GameCenter - Issue 70 - 32

cover story

SPEEDRUN

SQUAREPANTS
Since SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for
Bikini Bottom - Rehydrated was rebuilt from
the ground up, the team needed to make
sure the game felt close to the original. To
help in that goal, Purple Lamp Studios actually arranged a visit from the current world
record holder for speedrunning the original
game, a player who goes by SHiFT.
"SHiFT knows the original game inside
and out," said THQ Nordic producer Martin
Kreuch. "He pointed the team to a lot of
little details, shortcuts, and gameplay
design choices that are hard to spot, even
for a game developer. He visited the development studio and played the full game,
as far as it was done by the time, together
with the team."
While SHiFT may very well be the
world's foremost expert on Battle for Bikini
Bottom, he wasn't the only fan that the
team at Purple Lamp turned to for ideas.
"We've looked through the discussions
fans had on various forums and tried
to adjust our vision to incorporate their
expectations," Kreuch said. In fact, the
game's achievements (or trophies) were
directly inspired by an imagined list posted
to a community wiki. "The team liked [it] so
much that we got in touch with them and
the authors kindly allowed us to use what
they came up with in the actual game,"
Kreuch said.

32

understandably, contained a whole
lot of ice cream.
"Since we didn't want to alter
the actual single-player campaign
and risk the new content feeling
disjointed, we opted for integrating it
all into the new multiplayer," Kreuch
said. (For more on multiplayer, see
the sidebar "F Is for Friends Who Do
Stuff Together.") "Robo-Squidward
will appear throughout the multiplayer mode and later on also attack
the players. And several islands of
the multiplayer are designed [to be]
reminiscent of the Patrick's Dream
level fragment. Another little fan service we added is that we made the
SpongeBall Arena that was present
as a video in the original game during the credits fully playable."
Much like its absorbent and yellow and porous star, SpongeBob
SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom - Rehydrated seems eager to
please, offering both a respectful and
polished take on a cult classic and a
generous helping of new stuff. The
parallel probably isn't a coincidence,
either. Kreuch, like many of the de-

velopers who worked on the remake,
has been a fan of SpongeBob from
the show's earliest days. He and the
rest of the team see Rehydrated not
just as a chance to bring the game
back for a modern audience, but
also to continue the philosophy of
series creator Stephen Hillenburg,
who passed away in 2018. "His core
message that hope, love, imagination, and friendship can help you
overcome any obstacle is timeless,
as is the wacky brand of humor he
helped create," he said.
"Underwater," as Kreuch pointed
out, "the glass is always half full."

The new multiplayer content adds
four new playable
characters to the
game, each with
their own special
abilities.



GameCenter - Issue 70

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GameCenter - Issue 70

Contents
GameCenter - Issue 70 - 1
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GameCenter - Issue 70 - Contents
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