SpongeBob SquarePants Collapse Review
By James Archuleta |
A puzzle game based on the SpongeBob SquarePants license? Must be a quick and dirty cash in, right? Well, yes and no. SpongeBob Collapse is a surprisingly competent puzzler, mixing both speed and a moderate amount of strategy into the mix. Unfortunately, the game quickly degenerates into a frenzy of mouse clicks that eliminate any of the strategy from the equation.
SpongeBob Collapse provides you with a Tetris-like playing field. You start out with a few rows of colored blocks, and new rows are added from time to time. Your goal is to click on any groupings of the same color numbering three or more. The strategy comes in trying to create sizable combos, eliminating lots of blocks at once, as well as trying to clear the entire board for substantial score bonuses. Along the way, the speed will gradually pick up, and new power-ups--like bubbles that clear all blocks of a single color on the board, or stars that shift some of the surrounding colors around--start appearing. You also get a few short bonus stages to try.
The problem with the game is that once you get past the first several levels (which doesn't take an awfully long time), the strategy completely disappears. The game starts moving so fast that all you can really do is just mindlessly click away at the board, hoping to try to knock away as many blocks as you can before it reaches the top and the game is over. Similarly, once you hit a few high scores and advance about as high as you can reasonably go without losing your mind, there's really no incentive to come back.
The SpongeBob influence in Collapse is minimal at best, including only a few pieces of artwork and no voice acting or anything of that sort. Thus, for SpongeBob fans, there's really nothing in Collapse worth lauding; for puzzle fans, the game is merely an OK distraction at best. It's worth checking out via the free one-hour demo, but it's severely questionable as to whether it's worth a purchase.