A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off: Extra-Krusty Edition is an arcade cooking game for Switch. It's based on the popular TV show that has spawned a number of games, movies, toys, and more. Previously available on PC and mobile devices, this game has the popular sentient sponge making food for the hungry residents of Bikini Bottom. If he does a good job, SpongeBob not only earns the money he needs to keep going, but he can also earn some money to upgrade the grill or buy himself some snazzy sunglasses. Downloadable content (DLC) will be offered in the future, but there's no inappropriate content to be found in the game.
What's it about?
In SPONGEBOB: KRUSTY COOK-OFF: EXTRA-KRUSTY EDITION, Mr. Krabs has decided to open a pancake kiosk outside the Krusty Krab, and he's assigned SpongeBob to work it. So SpongeBob is not only responsible for cooking the pancakes and putting jelly on them when asked. He also has to serve the pancakes and the coffee, and collect the money (though he does seem to have someone busing the tables). In doing so, he not only makes Mr. Krabs happy (well, as happy as Mr. Krabs can be) -- which could get him moved up to making burgers and other foods -- but he also gets to interact with many of his fellow Bikini Bottom residents. Exclusive to the Switch version are four new power-ups to help SpongeBob get orders done faster, 400 levels to complete, new challenges, and plans for future downloadable content.
Is it any good?
It isn't the best version of this entertaining cooking game, but this arcade game is still a fun time with the friendly sponge that lives in a pineapple under the sea. Previously available on PC and mobile devices, SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off: Extra-Krusty Edition has Mr. Krabs opening a pancake stand outside the Krusty Krab and assigning SpongeBob to man it. Er, sponge it. Using simple controls, you not only have to make pancakes -- pouring the batter, taking them off the grill, adding jelly when requested -- but also serve coffee. Performing these tasks means that he'll not only earn the money for some new sunglasses, but also move up to making burgers and other food. In other words, this is just like Cooking Mama with SpongeBob, with all the frantic foodie fun that implies.
The problem is that this version of the game doesn't work as well as either the mobile version or Cooking Mama. For starters, you use the buttons and thumbsticks of the Switch to do things as you move around the kitchen. This works fine, but not nearly as well as the far more intuitive touchscreen would for this kind of point-and-click game. Secondly, the challenge is lessened when hitting the "serve" button gives pancakes to whoever wants them, even if they're not first in line. If the first customer orders plain pancakes, and the second orders them with jelly, and you hit "serve" when there's only jelly pancakes waiting, customer #2 gets served while customer #1 has to wait. Which means you're less likely to mess up someone's order. While the mobile version may work better (and be free), SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off: Extra-Krusty Edition is still a tasty treat.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about marketing to kids. While SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off: Extra-Krusty Edition is clearly being made for fans, it also serves to promote the show. Did it make you want to watch a few episodes?
To do well in SpongeBob: Krusty Cook-Off: Extra-Krusty Edition, SpongeBob has to work fast but also get people's orders right. What does this game teach you about the value of hard work?
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