THQ Nordic has announced a remake of the 2003 cult classic SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom, just ahead of E3. The upcoming title, SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated, was revealed via a quick video announcement showing SpongeBob SquarePants announcing he’s ready, then giving a battle cry.
The announcement comes a year after THQ Nordic first announced they would team up with Nickelodeon to revive classic titles from the ‘90s and 2000s based on fan-favorite Nickelodeon shows from those decades. Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated is the first of three new titles that THQ Nordic promised to reveal this week. The next two will be unveiled tomorrow, June 6, and Thursday, June 7, at 11 AM PT / 2 PM ET each day. SpongeBob won’t be coming to E3, according to THQ Nordic on Twitter, but the title is set to release on the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC eventually. As far as release date goes, the game’s Steam page says it will release “(When) I’m ready!”, a play on SpongeBob’s classic catchphrase.
The original Battle for Bikini Bottom, a 3D platformer developed by Heavy Iron Studios. released back in 2003 on the PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, and PC, with a handheld version for the Game Boy Advance. Playing as SpongeBob, Patrick, or Sandy, players would adventure through different parts of Bikini Bottom inspired by the cartoon, collecting items, avoiding traps and other environmental hazards, and fighting robots. It became a surprisingly popular game for hardcore gamers to speedrun and compare times. According to an online leaderboard dedicated to speedruns, the highest ranked Battle for Bikini Bottom player clocked in at 53 minutes and 25 seconds—just two months ago, well over 15 years after the game first came out.
Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated will be developed by Purple Lamp Studios and will feature a new multiplayer mode for up to two players. Though THQ Nordic has yet to release any gameplay footage or specifics about how the remake will compare to the original, they promise this will be a “faithful remake of one of the best SpongeBob games ever created” with updated and polished visuals, and even some content that was previously cut from the original game.