During the preparation of the "eleventy-seventh" anniversary of the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob tells Gary that he has been entrusted by Mr. Krabs to keep the Krabby Patty secret formula safe and secured, but while talking to Patrick, who has been hired for free as a guard, SpongeBob struggled hard to remember the location of the secret formula but ends up forgetting where the formula was at. Noticing his current sadness, SpongeBob worries as he states to Patrick that bringing up sad thoughts makes him unable to remember anything.
Upon hearing the dilemma of the sponge, Plankton shows up and offers a partnership in order to remember the formula's location. SpongeBob hesitates at first, thinking that Plankton might be available to use him to steal the formula but was convinced by Plankton's "honest face."
The two head to the Chum Bucket and SpongeBob is strapped to Plankton's memory machine, in which SpongeBob relives his memories through the help of his friends recreating memories inside his mind.
Unknown to SpongeBob, Plankton deploys his robots to SpongeBob memories to search the formula's location. Unfortunately for Plankton, the remote for the robots was broken accidentally, forcing him to go to the sponge's mind and search for the formula's location himself while guiding SpongeBob and reliving events in the sponge's life.
SpongeBob, finally remembering the formula's location, wakes up and declares that the formula is inside a safe. Plankton suddenly laughs and reveals his entire plan to SpongeBob that he only used him to find the formula. Plankton, then, turns the Chum Bucket into a massive robot that is headed to the Krusty Krab and ejects SpongeBob out of the giant robot. SpongeBob desperately chases the giant robot and goes inside to destroy its core.
After destroying the giant robot, SpongeBob rejoices but was approached by Mr. Krabs and was asked about what happened. SpongeBob answers that he lost the formula but was able to remember it where he hid it. The two headed to the Krusty Krab's safe where, much to the sponge's surprise, as the safe was empty. SpongeBob cries in complete sorrow but was able to suddenly find a paper in his pocket which is the secret formula. Upon giving the paper to Mr. Krabs, the crab recognizes that the paper was not the secret formula, but his lottery ticket instead, realizing that he handed the wrong paper all along, much to SpongeBob's surprise. Mr. Krabs was able to find the real formula on his back pocket and laughs it off, to which SpongeBob mocks him after learning that all the things are done for nothing. Plankton appears near to them while angrily whine about his constant loss and decides to give up and walk away.
PlayStation Portable version
A scenario exclusive to the PSP version shows that before waking up and unintentionally destroy's Plankton's machine, SpongeBob remembers that the formula is somewhere the Krusty Krab but was unsure if he is correct. Patrick suggested that he should remember all of his happy memories at the Krusty Krab, much to SpongeBob's disdain. SpongeBob then encounters Mr. Krabs giving the formula to the Robot SpongeBob, whom he mistook for the real one. As the robot runs away, SpongeBob chases the imposter while surviving hordes of robots, including mini-bosses, while jumping into mysterious teleporting boxes. After catching up with robot imposter, SpongeBob rejoices, only to find the imposter suddenly changed into one of Plankton's rogue hammer robots and knocks out the sponge.
Nintendo DS version
The main plot stays the same as the other versions with some alterations to fit with the exclusive gameplay modes and mini-games. One of the differences is that SpongeBob was convinced to accept Plankton's offer after asking Patrick and SpongeBob was not the cause of Plankton losing control of the robots but rather an unknown error. Another difference is that Plankton pretends to be a part of the recreation of SpongeBob's friends in his mind who offered help after "hearing his scream."
The game features ten levels (twelve on the PlayStation Portable version) that are reminiscent of various events on the television series.
Each level features platforming with hordes of enemies that can be destroyed through attacks. SpongeBob has three types of attacks that are obtained as the game progress, although attacks that are later unlocked cannot be used when replaying earlier levels. SpongeBob can also absorb water and spray it on various objects such as water-powered machines, fire, and sponge platforms. All attacks in the Nintendo DS version are already available from the beginning.
Spatula Slam - SpongeBob morphs his head into a giant spatula (hammer if in buffed form) and slams onto the ground. The PlayStation Portable version grants twice the damage when performing this attack in mid-air.
Spin Slap - SpongeBob morphs his head into a giant rotating ship's wheel (mechanical fans with long blades if in buffed form) to hit multiple enemies at once on a short-range but has weaker damage compared to the spatula. It can also be used for turning on rotating switches and gliding for a half-second.
Cannon Shot - SpongeBob morphs into a cannon to shoot water balloons at enemies and activates switches from a longer distance. The ammo is limited but can be replenished by collecting another pack of water balloons. The damage is doubled when in buffed mode.
Power-ups are also present in the game. When collected, the power-ups provide temporary enhancements to SpongeBob for only a short period of time.
Dumbbell - SpongeBob becomes buffed and gains muscular arms while wearing workout clothes. This power-up allows SpongeBob to deal twice the amount of damage to enemies and break stone tikis. Unlike the other power-ups, the buff power-up doesn't have a timer and will only disappear once SpongeBob gets hit once. This is absent as a collectible power-up in the Nintendo DS version where the buff power-up is activated by filling the gauge in the upper screen.
Hammer - SpongeBob morphs into a hammer and summons Patrick to hold him and rapidly slam into the ground, instantly dealing greater damage to enemies.
Karate Glove - SpongeBob morphs into a karate glove and summons Sandy to spin around continuously. It can destroy giant flowers that eat SpongeBob.
Music Note - Squidward suddenly appears and rapidly shoots two scattered water balloons.
Mr. Krabs - This power-up is exclusive to the Nintendo DS version. Mr. Krabs will turn SpongeBob into his gloves which can be used to rip through bags of money blocking the way.
Happy tokens are scattered throughout levels that can be collected in order to improve the furniture and memorabilia in SpongeBob's home. The coins can also be used to buy costumes and health upgrades. In the Nintendo DS version, tokens are used to fill the gauge for SpongeBob to become buffed.
A variant of the happy tokens, exclusive to the DS version, is the silver tokens, which are worth more than the ordinary happy tokens. Also, present in the Nintendo DS version is memory fragments, which allows players to enter secret areas, which will lead to bonus decorations in SpongeBob's house if all were collected.
There are also Patricks hidden around each level. Its purpose has no effect on the gameplay and is merely Easter eggs for the players to find. However, finding all of them will make players gain an Xbox achievement for the Xbox 360 version.
Differences between the console versions and the PlayStation Portable versions
The console version, which is the Wii and Xbox 360, was developed by Heavy Iron Studios, while the PlayStation Portable version was developed by Barking Lizards Technologies. The PlayStation Portable version was made to be similar to its console counterparts while having differences due to the handheld's limited hardware.
The HUD is closer to the edged screen on the PlayStation Portale version, due to the size of the screen.
The cutscenes are recorded instead of in-game.
Subtitles shown on cutscenes are on the very bottom of the screen and the text has a very small font while overlapped on a black transparent border instead of a blue rectangle.
In-game hub world dialogues are only voiced and subtitled as opposed to the console versions, which has characters animated to match the dialogues.
The PlayStation Portable version also lacks the letterbox screen during dialogues.
With the exception of pre-rendered cutscenes, small cutscenes, such as stage and enemy introductions, cannot be skipped.
SpongeBob instantly moves to the direction where the analog stick is pushed towards to instead of turning around first.
Using the spatula move in mid-air damages twice on normal enemies.
When buffed, one can see holes on the top of SpongeBob's eye.
There are fewer costumes and no health upgrades that can be bought in the wardrobe. Only one costume can be seen and the player needs to use the Direction Pad to view other costumes. The ones that are not bought are shown on silhouette forms.
Costumes are plain retextures of characters as opposed to actual costumes in the console versions.
There are two exclusive levels, Bikini Bottom and Krusty Krab.
However, Bikini Bottom was originally planned for the console version but was scrapped due to unknown reasons.
Multiplayer in the PlayStation Portable version is a set of party games that can be played through Ad-hoc as opposed to the console version's cooperative gameplay.
The graphics are scaled down due to the hardware capabilities of the PlayStation Portable.
This game includes a multiplayer mode in which the second player can play as Plankton. In the game, they can stun, zap, or grab enemies. When they stun the enemies, they will be temporarily stunned for a short period of time. This is an advantage to player one. When they zap an enemy, they will be damaged. When they grab enemies, they can shake the enemies left and right or they can slam the enemies down. This stuns them for a limited period of time.
The multiplayer option in the PlayStation Portable version is a set of party games that can be played by one or two players instead of a hidden cooperative gameplay. Press the triangle button to view a tutorial video depending on what game is selected.
Check Please - A hockey game with the patty as the hockey puck. The entire concept was based on the episode "Krabs à la Mode."
Collide & Conch-er - Players ride with their vehicles and capture jellyfishes scattered on the arena. If a jellyfish is captured, players must return to their starting points to score. There are also item boxes that contain weapons that can be used to attack enemies.
Reception for the Xbox 360 version has been mixed, with Metacritic giving the game a 6.5/10, indicating "mixed or average reviews," while the Official Xbox Magazine gave it a 4/10, stating that "Diehard fans may enjoy all the familiar faces, but a few hours was too much for us."
Reception for the Wii version has been slightly more positive, with Metacritic giving the game a 7/10.
Some of the game's stages resemble the ones from Battle for Bikini Bottom (Jellyfish Fields, Kelp Forest, Mermalair and Rock Bottom). The game also includes Tikis and Robots just like Battle for Bikini Bottom. In fact, it even shares some of the same music.
In the game, defeating the PatBot takes place at night while the episode it is based on takes place in the day, although the DS version of it takes place in the day.
The boxes around the level that you can teleport to when you have completed the level resemble the box from "Idiot Box." They also are similar to the boxes in Battle for Bikini Bottom and the SpongeBob SquarePants Movie game.
The Xbox 360, Wii and PlayStation Portable versions have the same gameplay, while the Nintendo DS version has its own gameplay style.
This game reveals SpongeBob's real muscles instead of fake ones.
Prawn, the mini-boss in the Mermalair from Battle for Bikini Bottom, appears in the Truth or Square Mermalair frozen in tartar sauce exactly as he appears when defeated in Battle for Bikini Bottom (except bigger, and SpongeBob said he was Man Ray by mistake and realizes he was Prawn, but calls him Mr. Shrimp).
In the PlayStation Portable version, Prawn is seen in just a default t-pose, instead of his regular pose.
Squidbot, the cut boss from Battle for Bikini Bottom, appears as a boss in "Squidward's First Yummy Krabby Patty."
On the Nintendo DS version, in SpongeBob's house, there is a 1% chance that Squidward will appear dressed up as Santa. He will start to say different quotes that he would say when acting like Santa.
In other SpongeBob games, jellyfish are common enemies, but the jellyfish in this game only appear in the first level but as platforms.
SpongeBob's tongue slider appears again in this game.
This game is developed by Heavy Iron Studios, which is the reason this game uses many elements from Battle for Bikini Bottom, another SpongeBob game, such as music, enemies, and objects like tikis. Three bosses (one which was scrapped from the home console version of Battle for Bikini Bottom) make an appearance in Truth or Square. It also has similarities to The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie video game.
The level "That's Not Your Formula, Plankton!" may have been originally named "Becoming a co-cashier," because the official site called this level "Becoming a co-cashier."
The last level of the Nintendo DS version is labeled "???" for some unknown reason.
And an exclusive level called "Krusty Krab Recall" is also present in the Nintendo DS version.
In the Nintendo DS version, Demento Bot appears as Santa, Santa, Santa boss and Tenderizer Bot become Kara-Tay! with Sandy boss.
In the tutorial videos of "Check Please" and "Collide & Conch-er" in the PlayStation Portable multiplayer party games, the floor has a darker lighting than the actual party game.
The game was originally tilted SpongeBob SquarePants: Happiness Squared according to two early trailer before being renamed to coincide with the release of the TV movie "Truth or Square". Thoses trailers also showcase many differences between the final game such as SpongeBob attacking with two spatulas or the presence of the tikis from "Battle for Bikini Bottom", They were however likely used as placeholders.
The game was supposed to be on the PlayStation 2 according to one of the trailer, but that version was canceled and possibly replaced with the Xbox 360 version.
This is the last SpongeBob game for the PlayStation Portable, as well as the last one to be distributed on a Universal Media Disc.
In SpongeBob's pineapple, there is a photo book that can be used to select levels. The pages shown have a picture of SpongeBob, Squidward, and Mr. Krabs inside the Krusty Krab from "Graveyard Shift," and a screenshot of SpongeBob and Sandy from "Tea at the Treedome."
This is the first Video game developed by Heavy Iron Studios as an Independent Developer.
The Wii version has slightly lower quality sound effects when compared to the Xbox 360 version. Some sound effects are also played through the Wii Remote.
The face SpongeBob makes on the cover art is different for every version.
This is the only Heavy Iron SpongeBob game to not be released on a PlayStation home console.
Similar to Battle For Bikini Bottom, you health in the game is underpants.
Even though the game was released after the 2009 rebrand, the game uses the old splat logo. The game also uses the splat game opening.