Are there other parallel universes or not? What is hidden beyond the anxieties of the human soul? And because SpongeBob is in trouble once again? Seemingly unanswered questions, but SpongeBob Squarepants The Cosmic Shake it’s that kind of video game that tries to answer each of them by pulling answers out of the hat that would seem meaningless, if read in passing, not well, and in an unclear way. In this case, however, there is very little to be happy about, and it seems that in the depths of Bikini Bottom, the underwater town that we have come to love over the years, there is something extremely mysterious hidden among its algae, the its rock houses and its sand. And there really is a broken veil to mend, as in the greatest cinematic stories. As has happened with so many other works, countless films and many other video games, SpongeBob now also has its own multiverse, with beautiful places, some scary, some chivalrous and just as many to discover. But let’s go in order.
A classic and clear story: a multiverse to the rhythm of SpongeBob
It’s just another day in Bikini Bottom. SpongeBob gets ready to go to work at Mr. Krabb’s, Patrick cleans the house and Sandy builds something rudimentary instead, because she doesn’t know what to do. The other inhabitants of the city, on the other hand, entertain themselves with little, eating and arguing with anyone who doesn’t like them. It doesn’t look like anything could go wrong, nor that someone can ruin all this monotony, badly supported even by SpongeBob himself. At least he has friends, his favorite people, his house and a nice TV. What could possibly go wrong with him?
All, actually, because the most talkative sponge in the world of pop culture is attracted by an idea that begins to creep into his simple mind: the possibility of granting any wish through a siren, who suddenly appears in Bikini Bottom. They already have tears, relevant for their new dream to come true, and they already begin to imagine themselves as rich tycoons and famous benefactors. But they don’t consider that everything has consequences, and as they rudely try to grant their wishes, a force more powerful than the universe completely damages the veil that separates reality, opening portals that suck in some of the dynamic duo’s inhabitants and friends. who once again finds himself having to save everyone. Incredulous, they look for any alternative way to pursue their goal, but the mission is only one: regain control before it’s too late, bringing lost friends back to reality. A completely new story in the world of SpongeBob Squarepants.
Without further spoilers, know that the new story of SpongeBob and Patrick is simple but powerful, written for both an adult audience and for the little ones, not disdaining moments of reflection. The new work dedicated to the yellow sponge, in fact, is classic and is certainly nothing new in the videogame panorama, considering the many other stories that the platform genre has managed to offer in recent years. However, SpongeBob Squarepants The Cosmic Shake arrives where other productions dedicated to the universe created by Nickledeon have failed to respect the premises, groping in the dark for years. Even if the writing is simple, it is nevertheless well condensed and structured, not presenting a certainly unedited story, however capable of attracting attention, taking up the relevance of the Multiverse but expanding its conception, leading the player to visit different places and interface with new realities. This is precisely the strong point of SpongeBob Squarepants: The Cosmic Shake: to tell a story with naturalness and freshness, maintaining a type of approach that entertains thanks to the writing of its protagonists, each of which with a soul and a past to be discovered.
Also, seeing typical characters from the series was a surprise, but we certainly couldn’t expect anything different. Traveling from one part of these worlds to another corresponds directly to discovering fundamental parts of one’s past, and the bond that many still have with SpongeBob and his imagination. What has been set up by Purple Lamp, therefore, is certainly not a new approach but still relevant to fully understand what is hidden in the bond between the various characters of this universe.
While not a captivating story, nor something that changes overnight the actual sensibility one has with a work of this kind, the story has the great advantage of addressing both the enthusiast and the neophyte, representing a perfect example of what it means to offer something that can be easily reached even by children. The story, therefore, is nothing particularly complex but is, consequently, perceptible to anyone looking for a product that is easy to understand. In this sense, the work done towards the narration, especially in some dialogues, describes the light-heartedness of SpongeBob Squarepants The Cosmic Shake.
Its originality is inevitably lacking due to this assumption, even if we appreciate the irony of certain really funny moments. In this regard, nothing appears confusing: everything follows a well-thought logic and a type of approach that is structured especially thanks to a good job of care of the original material. Loyalty, especially in representing the characters, is therefore a correct intuition, net of the problems related to the missions, which are the same in the type of exhibition proposed, never outlining differentiations but unfortunately remaining on certainly less unexplored terrains.
Fun gameplay but no depth
As we mentioned before, SpongeBob Squarepants The Cosmic Shake is a platform adventure, with a simple and not at all complex combat system. In this regard, the difficulty, already criticized in the past, does not represent the most successful part of the production at all. In one way or another, it is directly connected to the various enemies of the adventure, sometimes too similar to each other and with few concrete differences in approach during the most agitated phases. However, considering who it is aimed at, the work packs a playful structure that is not particularly exciting but effective. Not boring, in fact, is the possibility of using different combinations of attacks, on which the entire game system is basically based, which is engaging and entertainingarriving at his goal.
We will combine attacks of various kinds, including special offensives and we will dodge the enemy offensives with agile and careful leaps, and then dedicate ourselves to counterattack and to winif we are careful enough. However, the most successful part, however, concerns the platform imprint, a structure that is actually not particularly varied in all eight available levels of the campaign, in which it is possible to face different challenges to your liking. This is nothing particularly innovative and, due to some rhythm problems, the experience could in fact not be particularly engaging, especially due to a certain frequency of actions which, instead of improving and proposing differences, are content to do the little is essential. Net of a not particularly successful pace, the part that most of all convinced us, however, is the layout of the various areas and how the portals have been implemented, which are fundamental during the entire game experience. representing the heart of the experience itself.
Not lacking impact, however, is the constant rhythm, never boring and engaging, which leaves no room for downtime or moments of boredom. There is nothing new, we want to repeat it, yet it is still well constructed. SpongeBob will also be able to count on Patrick’s help during the levels, as well as on the rest of his friends. Returning to talk about the variety of levels and the various maps, the most famous pop culture sponge will even be able to learn new ways to approach enemies. On more than one occasion, in fact, we found ourselves facing those in front of us simply by scaring them, in the level dedicated to Halloween, and we learned new ways to get rid of enemies, advancing in SpongeBob Squarepants The Cosmic Shake until its conclusion while still maintaining a certain kind of contentment, aware of the fact that there is no production that exaggerates but intends to propose its playful structure without climbing too much. A well-considered choice, we emphasize, which however shows the side of some small lightness in terms of game design.
The phases of combatindeed, they are not particularly fluid. They stumble, are inaccurate and are not always enjoyable due to enemies without the right creative flair. On many occasions, the fights are too easily won and the less successful aspect unfortunately does not reflect today’s standards, failing to respect them. We have often faced some creatures by simply repeating the same actions, leading us to repeat them over and over again. Nothing serious, mind you, but the imbalance prevented us from fully appreciating the attempt. Replayability, however, is a point in favor of the production, with the possibility of repeating the same past missions to unlock collectibles and collect what has not been taken previously, while also unlocking new costumes.
A sometimes lame technical system
The technical side, unfortunately, is the victim of interpenetration, with some non-destabilizing, but still persistent bugs. During the excited moments, it happened that the action stopped for a moment and then restarted as if nothing had happened. Another aspect that is not totally in focus concerns the input lag, with the hope that this will be corrected with the first updates of the game. The graphic aspect, on the other hand, is decidedly cartoonish, with rich and evocative settings, colorful and lively at the same time. Fidelity with the cartoon was achieved without a hitch and the concept devised is interesting but perhaps too closely followed by other productions.
Piattaforme: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, Nintendo Switch
Sviluppatore: Purple Lamp
Publisher: THQ Nordic
Ultimately, SpongeBob: The Cosmic Shake is a little guts production that, however, tells a classic story adequately. It uses simple, unsophisticated language, and arrives at the aim of proposing a story reserved for children and adults, specifically for fans of the crazy adventures of the sponge. Net of a gameplay that is not totally precise but still engaging, it is a useful production to while away the wait. A carefree game, quiet and with a modest graphic sector.
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