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Children's Software Review:

The SpongeBob Square Pants Movie (for the PC)

PC Software Review: The SpongeBob Squarepants Movie (for the PC)
Children's Computer Game for the PC

By THQ

Our Recommended Age: Ages 8-11

Our Rating: B



about our reviews:
All reviews at Edutaining Kids are independent and impartial. Our children's software reviews are designed to help parents and caregivers find the right computer games for their kids. Evaluations and ratings are based on educational and entertainment value, age appropriate content, and innovativeness.

Spongebob Squarepants pictures

The Spongebob Squarepants Movie software game for the PC should not be confused with the video game counterparts -- it is not a platformer. Rather, it's an adventure game that involves hunting for objects to add to the inventory, using the items in order to solve problems, and advancing to the next levels. This game is divided into chapters. Each chapter involves some kind of special task and opens with a story that sums up portions of the feature film.

Interestingly, the different chapters in the game allow kids to lead different characters, such as Spongebob and Mindy, in order to perform the chapter's tasks. Chapter Two, for example, involves helping Plankton, the "bad guy", carry out his evil plan "Z"!

Kids need to lead the star character through the chapter by exploring an area (such as the rooms of Spongebob's home), picking up objects, talking to characters, and solving problems. In Chapter One, for example, kids move Spongebob through the rooms of his home. If they try to exit the house, Spongebob will tell them, "I can't go outside in my underwear!" They need to find his clothes, which involves first picking up a spatula in the kitchen and using it on the lock of his chest, which is broken. He talks to a "highstrung" telephone repairman in his yard, to his pet snail, and, later, to Patrick and Squidward. He needs to brush his teeth before he can move to the next chapter, but he doesn't have toothpaste.

There are some perhaps questionable moments in the game, although that  is to be expected with the Spongebob license. For example, if kids leave the water running in the sink, there doesn't seem to be any consequence. Although the game plays with a similar style as Putt-Putt and Freddi Fish, it's not as socially responsible. (Makes me think that Putt-Putt would definitely remind kids to turn off the water!). Speaking of comparisons to Putt-Putt, when Spongebob sees that Squidward has toothpaste and players try to take it, Spongebob says, "I can't take that!", but then follows with the reason, "Squidward might see me!", and the only way to get the toothpaste involves deceiving Squidward by distracting him. Kids are also told things like, "You have GOT to be kidding!" when they don't use the right item. Definitely not Putt-Putt! Granted, some parents have expressed that they find Putt-Putt a bit too squeaky clean.

There is a fair amount of humor in the game that helped hold children's interest. Because there is a lot of waiting and re-tracing one's steps in the game, the program feels tedious at times. Reading is required.

Kid testers got stuck early in the game. However, after they solved their initial dilemmas, they became more accustomed to the gameplay and had a far easier time completing the game after getting past the original hump. It is important that users read the jewelcase insert for basic instructions. If kids don't know that they often need to combine items in order to solve a problem, they will be hopelessly stuck. For those who want a few hints, we have put together a few tips to get through some of the trickier stages of the game here: Spongebob Squarepants Movie for the PC Hints.

See also: More screenshots from the game

Our Rating:

B


more information:

For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Spongebob Squarepants The Movie

Reviewed: April 2005

Comments? Email us

Other Guides, Reviews, & Articles at Edutaining Kids:


see also:

Gift Guides for Ages 9-up

Fun & Learning with Digital Cameras

Spongebob Squarepants Article

 



Spongebob Squarepants The Movie


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