The History of SpongeBob SquarePants Video Games

The History of SpongeBob SquarePants Video Games

SpongeBob SquarePants a.k.a. SpongeBob is an animated comedy television series based in America. It was created by Stephen Hillenburg who is a marine scientist and an educator. Nickelodeon Network is the sole broadcaster of the series and it has won many hearts since its start back in 1999. Because of its success among the audience it has generated billions of dollars in revenue. 

Marketing 101 is to recognize the public’s demand and serve it for maximum profits, the same was done with SpongeBob. Based on the animated TV series, a video game was developed which was followed by sequels in this industry too.  

In today’s article, we will go through the SpongeBob SquarePants video games that have left their mark on history. We will bring on some amazing facts which are often left out. So without further delay, let’s get into it.

Greatest SpongeBob Games

SpongeBob SquarePants: Legend of Lost Spatula

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants: Legend of Lost Spatula

SpongeBob SquarePants: Legend of Lost Spatula was the first game based on SpongeBob. It was developed by Vicarious Visions and was published by THQ in 2001. And was released for the Game Boy Color console. It was made according to the action genre.

The game revolves around SpongeBob who is set out to become the greatest fry cook in the town of Bikini Bottom. The goal of the game is to retrieve the golden spatula from a pirate with name Flying Dutchman. Besides SpongeBob, this game also features many other characters from the series.

Although the game was liked by the younger audience, it was not very attractive to many people. After its release it received very bad review scores from GameSpot and IGN, however, Nintendo Power saw it as average.

SpongeBob SquarePants: SuperSponge

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants: SuperSponge

SpongeBob SquarePants: SuperSponge was developed by Climax Development and published by THQ. This game also came out in 2001 and it was released for PlayStation. It sold 1.06 million copies after it was released which made it one of the best-selling games for the console.

In this game three playable characters SpongeBob, Patrick, and Plankton were included. Basically, you need to collect the spatulas which are scattered all over the level but you need to do it without getting touched by the enemy. 

SpongeBob SquarePants: SuperSponge received mixed reviews from critics. But the numbers show that the game was a real success.

SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom

SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom was developed by Heavy Iron Studios and published by THQ. It was released for PlayStation 2, Xbox, and GameCube. There were also separate versions developed by AWE Games and Vicarious Visions for Microsoft Windows and Game Boy Advance respectively.

The gameplay of this game revolves around defending Bikini Bottom from the robots’ invasion. Plankton-made robots take initiative against the hometown of SpongeBob and he didn’t hold back to step up for the task. In this game, you can play SpongeBob in all versions and Patrick and Sandy in the console versions.

Battle for Bikini Bottom has a massive community that loves the game from the heart. The game received average reviews from critics. Following its massive success the game’s remastered version was released in 2020.

The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants Movie

The  SpongeBob SquarePants Movie was published by THQ and Nick Games for PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, Microsoft Windows, and Game Boy Advance. Heavy Iron Studios developed the versions for PlayStation 2, Xbox, and GameCube. WayForward Technologies developed the Game Boy Advance and AWE Games developed the Microsoft version.

The gameplay of this game is on a different console, PC and Game Boy Advance. You will play as SpongeBob or Patrick through all the versions. The console version is quite interactive, where each level has a different goal with many side objectives to play for. Whereas, in the PC and Game Boy versions the story is moved forward through the pictures.

The game received above-average reviews from all around. It was one of the “Greatest Hits” for PlayStation 2 and “Platinum Hits” for Xbox which reflects the great success this game achieved.

SpongeBob SquarePants: Lights, Camera, Pants!

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants: Lights, Camera, Pants!

In October 2005, SpongeBob SquarePants was released for the Xbox, PlayStation 2, GameCube, Game Boy Advance, and PC. It is the first SpongeBob SquarePants game to include multiplayer mini-games, much like the Mario Party video game series.

The console version of the game features a story where players play as SpongeBob and gain points through different minigames to win over the scouts hunting for an actor to play the villain. Whereas the PC version is a point-and-click adventure game, where you have to find the actors for a TV show.

It was one of the “Greatest Hits” for PlayStation 2 and “Platinum Hits” for Xbox. The PC version of the game received the best reviews among all the versions, yet this doesn’t take away the charm of other versions.

SpongeBob SquarePants and Friends: Unite!

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants and Friends: Unite!

SpongeBob SquarePants and Friends: Unite is a video game that includes characters from multiple Nickelodeon animated series. In the game, players can control four different characters; Jimmy Neutron, Timmy Turner, Danny Phantom, and SpongeBob SquarePants.

The ultimate goal of the game is to make all the characters work together and defeat the villains from all the included series. In the console version, all the characters are on the field and players can switch among them to play. Each character has special abilities which can be helpful in different situations.

Although the reviews received by the game were not that bad it was not much appreciated either. Still, the game made it to the “Greatest Hits” list of the PlayStation 2.

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Yellow Avenger

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants: the Yellow Avenger

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Yellow Avenger was developed by Tantalus Media and published by THQ in 2005. It was released for Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable, which made it the first game to be released on these two consoles.

The storyline of the games goes on as Bikini Bottom faces a lot of villains and the responsibility of its defense falls on SpongeBob. SpongeBob has the Mermaid Man’s belt which gives him extra powers, but a little mishap with the belt now splits him into bubbles when he put it on. 

The Nintendo DS version of the game received very good reviews, however, can’t be said the same for the PSP version.

SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab

SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab is an action-adventure game published by THQ. It was released for Windows, Game Boy Advance, GameCube, PlayStation 2, Nintendo DS, and Wii. Rumour has it that the Xbox version was also planned but the idea was dropped at some point. 

Blitz Games developed the PS2, GameCube, and Wii versions which are basically ports of the same game. AWE Games and WayForward Technologies developed separate games for Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, and PC. 

The storyline of the game goes forward in the dreams of three characters; SpongeBob, Patrick, and Plankton. The players take control of these characters and roam around the nine realms to complete objectives.

The game was nominated for the Annie Award for the best-animated video game. It is also on the “Greatest Hits” list of PlayStation 2. Overall the game received above-average reviews from all the critics and was a great success. It was also the first SpongeBob game to be released in Japan.

SpongeBob’s Truth or Square

Greatest SpongeBob Games- SpongeBob's Truth or Square

SpongeBob’s Truth or Square is based on an episode of a TV series with the same title. Altron developed the Nintendo DS version of the game. It was also released on Xbox 360, Wii, and PlayStation Portable.

In this game, SpongeBob is set on a mission to find the formula that he lost with the help of his friend. Well, the objective is to use the machine developed by Plankton to go back into his memory and find the location of the formula. The story of the game is built around this concept.

In general, the game received very mixed reviews, however, some critics, criticized the game brutally.

The Financial Side

SpongeBob has been part of everyone’s childhood and we feel a sense of attachment to it. This sense of attachment has brought a massive amount of revenue for the SpongeBob SquarePants brand. 

As Nickelodeon holds the rights to the TV series which is created by Stephen Hillenburg, so all the income generated through the brand deals goes to them, which also includes deals with games publishers. 

According to some estimates Nickelodeon has earned around $13 billion through SpongeBob SquarePants. The total earnings by the SpongeBob brand can’t be imagined but the above number does give us food for thought. 

Another number that reflects the great success of SpongeBob SquarePants is the SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom–Rehydrated has sold over 2m copies

People have always loved SpongeBob and it has served the producers generously for their efforts in making the project successful.

Why was there a need for Video Games?

Well, it is a valid question if you ask us. Back in the day, SpongeBob SquarePants has a massive percentage of the young audience. Producing SpongeBob games to entertain those kids would not be a bad idea by any stretch. And fair play to Nickelodeon and THQ they made it happen.

Fast forward to today, when gaming is the biggest industry in the world, producing video games can be considered a good business idea now. Everyone loves to play a good story and when you have a community as SpongeBob has then not making a video game would be the biggest business mistake.

Even if you are not a SpongeBob fan, playing the game may plant a seed of love for the show which ultimately benefits all the stakeholders. These things show how much a video game can impact the growth of a franchise.

TV Series vs Video Games

We can’t say that the SpongeBob Squarepants video games are a mirror depiction of TV series, however, some of the games do show the theme of the series. The important thing is that the viewers and gamers enjoyed both equally.

The amount of copies the games have sold shows how big the SpongeBob community is and how much they love the brand. Now whether it is an episode from the series or some SpongeBob game it has turned out well for everyone involved.

However, if you are new to the SpongeBob world, we would recommend you go for the TV series first before jumping on to the video games. It will give you a better context which will make your game-playing experience, even more, fun and enjoyable.

What to expect next?

From the success of SpongeBob SquarePants video games so far and the trajectory of the world’s general flow we can expect more games to come. The world of Bikini Bottoms will once again light up our screens.

However, SpongeBob might be in the new universe in the new game launching in 2023 as it seems from the demo. SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake features SpongeBob dressed as a cowboy wandering around the world. It doesn’t seem to be a very difficult game to play and neither should it be. As it mostly targets the young audience and according to that it is on point.

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake

Other than the Cosmic Shake there is nothing new to expect in the SpongeBob Squarepants video games genre. 

Will it ever end?

This big question will be on the minds of many, but everyone would be expecting the same answer. And that would be, “No”. But it is not up to us to decide that. Rather the creator of the show or the publisher of the video games can answer this question better.

But we can estimate things according to the provided information. If we analyze, we would come to know that SpongeBob SquarePants has been a great success whether it’s been on Silver screens or PC monitors. Everything has its end and we would want SpongeBob to end on a very high note but it must not be in near future. And fortunately for us– the SpongeBob fans– it looks like the end will not be in our lifetimes.

However, in the case of the drastic decision taken by the owner of the SpongeBob franchise (Nickelodeon), things can be turned out differently but it is very unlikely.

Conclusion 

SpongeBob is a much-admired toon character among kids and adults all the same. It has acquired a special place in our memories and as SpongeBob fans, we can understand how one must feel about the productions related to it. In this article, we have brought you a brief history of the SpongeBob SquarePants video games. 

There are a total of 45 games that have been released so far. And all of them have been a massive hit. Although some of them have made skyrocketed success in terms of sales and have gathered appreciation accordingly. 

This article covers such games that have marked history with SpongeBob’s name. The article discusses nine games in detail. We have added all the information that is needed by our readers to understand the standing of SpongeBob SquarePants on the Games chart. 

Was there a need for a SpongeBob video game? We have answered this question in a separate section. It’s important to address this question as SpongeBob was already a big hit on TV why would you take a risk in building a video game back in 2001?

We have also covered the financial side of all the production. We also added a small section to point out the differences between the SpongeBob SquarePants TV series and the video games.

There are also small sections that cover, ”What to expect next from the SpongeBob franchise?”, and an analysis of the life cycle of SpongeBob.

The main agenda of this article was to educate our readers, and hopefully, we have been successful in our attempt. Have a good one everyone, see you soon!!

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