Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition Review
Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition box art
System: DS Review Rating Legend
Dev: Altron 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: THQ 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Sept. 15, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Combat and movement feels a little tighter this time around. The D-pad and face buttons control most of the action, but you’ll also need to have the stylus handy, since each level contains foe-producing pockets of scribbles that must be erased via the touch screen. In most levels you can bring along a backup character that can be called upon to unleash a touch-specific special ability.

Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition screenshot

They’re helpful but ultimately not particularly necessary. Also, after whomping on baddies, you’re given the opportunity to draw your own friendlier versions that will pop up as pals and dance around the next time you defeat a specific foe. It’s an interesting new element that works well for the intended audience – showing kids they’re not “killing” bad guys per se.

Like the original, the one area where the game excels is in the frequent use of the drawing program to design various elements in the game. Frequently, new items, creatures, elements, and objects will crop up that require you to draw them in any way you’d like. The best part is skill is not necessarily required to make a functional object, but it’s great to see your own creations in action in the game. The opportunity to pick up and design unusual items to help your character throughout your adventure is also quite rewarding. Drawing and coloring in the editor is simple. It shouldn’t be too inhibiting for players who want to get on with the action to whip something up quickly, but it really does provide a great opportunity for creative players to serve a crucial role in the game’s experience.

Given the more kid-oriented nature of this version, the extra content is tuned accordingly. A series of “learning to draw” tutorials give tips on drawing different character design elements, including coloring, faces, shapes, and other features, and you can also practice drawing variations of SpongeBob himself. A coloring book option lets you paint colors from a variety of palettes into a number of different unlockable line drawings. There’s also a cheat entry menu and a limited multi-card mini-game to play with. Definitely meant for younger kids, these activities offer simple and fun diversions. They may perhaps prove enjoyable for younger siblings who are not quite ready to handle the main game itself.

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Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition is easily the lesser of the two different versions of the game. It ditches some of what makes Drawn to Life so enjoyable, in favor of pandering to the kiddy crowd. The move is successful – any young SpongeBob fan is going to love this title – yet most gamers should do themselves a favor and just go with the original.

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Staff Contributor

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.7
Graphics
Strong artwork amplified by the ability to create your own assets.
3.6
Control
Slightly improved button controls mix well with the same intuitive drawing elements.
3.2
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
How many times can you listen to the SpongeBob SquarePants theme and live?
3.7

Play Value
The intended audience will find much to enjoy in this package.

3.5
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Side-scrolling platforming action.
  • Explore unique worlds that have their own special mechanics and goals.
  • Over 20 levels, each with their own specific objective(s) that you need to complete before you can advance to the next stage.
  • The action increases as you complete the objectives and conquer the levels.
  • Puzzle, race, platform, and fight your way through the game!
  • Draw your own original character and control it.


  • Screenshots / Images
    Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition screenshot - click to enlarge Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition screenshot - click to enlarge Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition screenshot - click to enlarge Drawn to Life: SpongeBob SquarePants Edition screenshot - click to enlarge

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