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Video Game / SpongeBob SquarePants: Operation Krabby Patty

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"Lemme just grab some pants!"
SpongeBob SquarePants: Operation Krabby Patty is a 2001 Point-and-Click PC game developed by AWE Games and published by THQ. It is succeeded by SpongeBob SquarePants: Employee of the Month.

The plot is divided into two sub-plots: the Right Side and the Wrong Side. The Right Side revolves around SpongeBob trying to find Mr. Krabs to warn him about Plankton's latest invention, Robo Krabs. The Wrong Side revolves around SpongeBob embarking on a quest to find Gary, who has been hidden somewhere in Bikini Bottom by Plankton and used to obtain the Krabby Patty formula.

The game consists of five different minigames, with them being played in a different order depending on which Side you play:
  • Invasion of the Patty Snatchers: Play as Robo Krabs (Right Side) or SpongeBob (Wrong Side) and assemble Krabby Patties by retrieving ingredients from sea ants.note 
  • Boating School 101: Drive around the Boating School track and clear checkpoints of certain colors.note 
  • Who Cut the Cheese?: Play as SpongeBob and Patrick (Right Side)/Squidward (Wrong Side) and ride hooks to collect cheese.note 
  • Hide N' Go Jellyfishin': Play as SpongeBob and Sandy (Right Side)/Patrick (Wrong Side) and capture jellyfish of certain colors to collect jelly.note 
  • Save Me Money!: Stop the Flying Dutchman's pirate crew from stealing Mr. Krabs's money by blasting them with bubble cannons.note 

The game itself has an impressive level of Continuity Porn, containing quite a few references from the first two seasons.


  • Ability Depletion Penalty: Picking up the wrong color checkpoint in Boating School 101 or coming in contact with enemies like jellyfish, oysters, and electric eels in any of the games will reduce your time limit by a few seconds.
  • As Himself: All the canon characters are credited as themselves while the mentioned sea ants are given actual names.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: The plot of the Right Side has SpongeBob constantly getting distracted in his quest by hanging out with his friends.
  • Beyond the Impossible: The boat somehow ends up chasing and riding SpongeBob and Mrs. Puff in the end cutscene for the Right Side's version of "Boating School 101".
  • Big Bad: In both sides, Plankton leads an army of sea ants to do his evil bidding. In the Right Side, he builds a robotic replica of Mr. Krabs and sends him to go steal Krabby Patties, while in the Wrong Side, Plankton kidnaps Gary and sends SpongeBob on a series of missions before he'll return him.
  • The Cameo: Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy are among the people sitting in the stands in Boating School 101.
  • Continuity Porn: From the first two seasons:
    • Hide N' Go Jellyfishin' and the blue jellyfish can be seen as a reference to "Jellyfish Hunter".
    • The jellyfish Big Lenny from "I'm Your Biggest Fanatic" appears in Hide N' Go Jellyfishin' as an opportunity to capture and earn extra points.
    • The Right Side features Robo Krabs from "Imitation Krabs".
    • "Who Cut the Cheese?" is basically the episode "Hooky" converted into a minigame.
    • The pop guns from "Sandy's Rocket" are used to capture jellyfish in Hide N' Go Jellyfishin'.
    • Patrick gives Squidward mouth-to-mouth in the ending cutscene of the Right Side version of Boating School 101, like how he did in "Naughty Nautical Neighbors".
    • When Patrick is seen running on top of a dock in the ending cutscene of the Right Side version of Boating School 101, he falls down similar to how he did in "Texas".
    • Plankton's recurring exclamation of how he went to college, as well as him randomly pulling out the phonograph playing an ABC's song, are references to "Plankton!".
    • SpongeBob shouts "Bring it around town!" in the ending cutscene for the Right Side version of Who Cut the Cheese?, a line from "Bubblestand".
    • SpongeBob shouts "The Amazing Mr. Absorbency" in the opening cutscene for the Right Side version of Save Me Money!, referencing "Culture Shock".
    • In the Wrong Side version of Who Cut the Cheese? Squidward will sometimes play on his clarinet the song from the end of "Bubblestand" as he rides upwards on a hook. He will also do it if you press the spacebar while you play as him.
    • The minigame selection map for the Wrong Side has the techno song from "Jellyfish Jam" as the background music.
    • The wall from "Boating School" has a cameo in Boating School 101.
  • Deadpan Snarker: The audio tape Plankton listens to in the Wrong Side.
    • "Maybe SpongeBob should've applied for a moron's licence instead."
  • Dumb Muscle: The sea ants aren't all that bright, as they get Plankton's orders wrong and frequently fall victim to Poor Communication Kills.
  • Eleventy Zillion: The last item Plankton tells SpongeBob to bring him in the Wrong Side is one gazillion dollars. When the tape he's listening to tells him that a gazillion is not a real number, he decides to lessen it to just one hundred dollars.
  • Fetch Quest: Plankton sends SpongeBob on one in the Wrong Side in order to find Gary. The items include a learners permit, jellyfish jelly, Krabby Patties, cheese, and a hundred dollars.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: When the sea ants manage to finally bring the Krabby Patties over to the Chum Bucket from SpongeBob's house, they also bring the self-destructing tape he intended to leave for him. After he wonders why he is counting backwards while trying to total up the Krabby Patties obtained, the tape explodes, bringing the Chum Bucket down with it.
  • Jump Cut: Literally. When questioning how he can quickly come up with one-hundred dollars to pay Plankton, SpongeBob jumps in mid-air and somehow transitions onto Mr. Krab's sailboat in time for the final mini-game.
  • Random Events Plot: Both sides accomplishes this as even if you watch all the cutscenes back-to-back, you'd still be lost due to SpongeBob getting distracted by other things and Plankton coming up with weird demands for his ransom plot that only exists to justify the mini-games.
  • The Reveal: Parodied. After SpongeBob and Squidward collect enough cheese, SpongeBob questions why Squidward suddenly sounds like Patrick, so Squidward reveals that he's actually Patrick in disguise, only for Patrick to reveal that he's actually some anchovy named Willy, who sounds like Squidward. It turns out that it was Squidward all along, who was playing a prank on SpongeBob.
  • Scoring Points: Every minigame is built on a point system where completing objectives nets you points, with you being able to gain additional points from your remaining time or by picking up items like kelp bars or treasure chests. However, you can also lose points by running into enemies or objects like lone sea ants or cheeseless hooks.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: The ending to both Sides. The Right Side ends in SpongeBob successfully warning Mr. Krabs about Robo Krabs, only for Krabs to not be worried about it as he accurately guesses that Plankton will inevitably end up somehow sabotaging his own plan. The Wrong Side ends in Gary sneaking away and reuniting with SpongeBob and Plankton blowing himself and the Chum Bucket up with one of his self-destructing tape recorders.
  • Tag Team:
    • In Hide N' Go Jellyfishin', you can go behind Hideout Rock to reload your pop gun and switch between characters.
    • In Who Cut the Cheese?, one character is selected to ride on a hook with no cheese while the other character collects cheese from other hooks before the former reaches the surface.
  • The Television Talks Back: Plankton's audio tape in The Wrong Side gives Plankton sass for his various failures throughout the story.
  • Villain Protagonist: You play as Robo Krabs piloted by Plankton in the Right Side version of Invasion of the Patty Snatchers, and roam around on his mission to steal Krabby Patties.