Some may think that "children are our future." However, when it comes to kids, THQ is thinking about now. The game publisher holds some of the most coveted family-friendly licenses in the business with its arrangement with Nickelodeon, a brand of Viacom. In 2004, THQ cemented its position as a children's game powerhouse by extending its Nickelodeon deal through 2010 and inking a partnership with film studio Pixar.
Today, THQ announced its 2006 Nickelodeon lineup aimed at the prepubescent crowd. The kids cable network is responsible for some of the most popular children's shows, including SpongeBob SquarePants, The Fairly OddParents, and Danny Phantom. In this upcoming year, young gamers can expect to see more familiar Nick names, as well as a game based on an upcoming Nick movie.
The biggest announcement from today's news is a new next-generation game featuring kids' favorite underwater invertebrate, SpongeBob SquarePants. SpongeBob, Patrick, and pals are headed to the Revolution in SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab. The game, which features nine levels spread across Bob's home turf of Bikini Bottom, will also be released for the GameCube, Game Boy Advance, DS, and the PC this fall.
Avatar: The Last Airbender brings one of Nick's newest shows to game consoles for the first time. The show's martial-arts action will kick onto the Revolution, GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox, Game Boy Advance, DS, PSP, and the PC this fall.
Danny Phantom makes his first appearance on the DS in Danny Phantom Urban Jungle, scheduled to hit stores this fall. In the game, players control the spectral superhero as he takes on his archenemy and learns the new freeze power. Urban Jungle will also be released on the Game Boy Advance.
Live-action teen show Unfabulous is also headed to the Game Boy Advance. As teenaged girl Addie Singer, gamers will have to face one of life's ultimate challenges--the social ladder of Rocky Road Middle School. The game will be based on the characters and events from the show.
Fans of Nickelodeon in general will also get a chance to play as their favorite characters without having to lug around 10 different games. Nicktoons (working title) features characters from several of the network's shows, including SpongeBob, Jimmy Neutron, and The Fairly OddParents. By combining the strengths and weapons, the characters will take on an enemy aiming to destroy a Nicktoons island. Nicktoons is in the works for the PS2, GameCube, GBA, and the DS.
Nickelodeon's upcoming film, Barnyard, will be getting the game-to-film treatment. The film, written and directed by Steve Oedekerk (Kung Pow: Way of the Fist, Thumbtanic), is scheduled to be released on July 28 in North America, and gamers can expect Barnyard to hit the PlayStation 2, GameCube, and the Game Boy Advance a few days earlier. A PC version will be released later this fall.