Fighting Review

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl – Review | Cartoon Combat

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is the kind of game that usually just sneaks out into the market and doesn’t exactly cause any ripples. This one breaks the mold, with it receiving tons of publicity and people excited about it long before release. So does it live up to the internet hype train it garnered? Let me take you for a ride. 

Time to Slime

Now, this is where I would normally be talking about the story for Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl. Perhaps how some diabolical force has pulled all of these iconic characters such as Reptar, Cat Dog, and Ren and Stimpy together? Some kind of dispute? Sadly there isn’t any reason here for why this battle is going on.

It is almost like an early warning sign that permeates throughout the whole game; There is no story. Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl has no cutscenes. And aside from the same one-liners for each of the characters at the start of a match in Arcade Mode, there is no dialogue. There are no character endings and even the credits are Sandy Cheek’d away in the options menu!

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl - Sandy VS Patrick

The Rogue’s Gallery

Now onto something slightly more positive. Let us take a look at the roster, shall we?

You have some iconic Nickelodeon characters ranging from the popular Spongebob to classics like Ren and Stimpy. It covers new and old, with characters from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ahhh! Real Monsters, The Loud House, and far more. It’s a real eclectic mix but should reasonably cover any Nick fan ranging from younglings to the old-timers like me!

The characters are all well represented, they look well made and often have cheeky little nods to classic episodes. This is especially the case with characters like SpongeBob, which certainly received a lot of love from the Meme community!

Where the characters really fall down lies within the sound department of the game. Aside from the line already mentioned, they have no voices at all! This is quite disappointing and again smacks of budget issues. No matter how good the characters look it feels so dull when they don’t have iconic catchphrases or noises coming from them! Imagine a silent Nigel Thornberry; it’s good but not quite “Smashing!”.

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl - Nigel

Hug Me Brother!

So how do the Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl cast choose to throw down I hear you cry? Well in the style of a Platform Fighter like a little-known title called Super Smash Brothers. While not the biggest genre, there are plenty of titles just like it and we need to discuss exactly what this one brings to the table and why you should care. 

What Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl brings to separate the wheat from the chaff is basically the roster. Aside from that, it’s the standard affair you have seen in other “Smash Clones”. You can have up to 4 characters fighting on stages based on iconic scenery from Nickelodeon properties.

Each character has a percentage meter that shows how much damage they have taken. The higher the number, the more chance you have of getting knocked off the stage and losing one of your lives – lose the lot, and it’s game.

Unstoppable Death Machine

Where Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl seems to put its focus is more on the actual combat and combo potential, instead of chaotic battles. This is mainly because there are no items in the game. You don’t have that random nature that comes with RNG drops from items just appearing mid-match here.

You have weak, strong, and special attacks which can all combo into each other. There’s even is a handy movelist within the options menu for you to see what the moves look like and how to perform them. You also have block and throw options, along with a Strafe button which allows you to face the same way when you run. This opens up the combat much further than one would expect. Despite this, once you get over the fact that you can’t map jump to an up motion, you will be picking the game up and throwing it down in minutes.

The game provides you a very bare-bones Arcade mode, a battle mode for vs CPU or couch players, and online multiplayer both ranked and casual. It’s reported that the game has rollback netcode; when I played it the game seemed fine, but I couldn’t personally confirm that the messiah of online multiplayer had arrived.

The Future is Bright. The Future is Orange

Graphically the game looks fantastic. As mentioned earlier in the review, the character models are an absolute stand-out, are animated brilliantly, and contain various little Easter Egg nods to Nickelodeon history. 

The stages again are all brilliant nods to the iconic children’s programming but seem rather flat in comparison. When you’re competing with a title like Smash Bros you need to get the stages just right, and sadly here they feel mostly stationary and lifeless. It really just shows them as the window dressing that they are.


Sadly it is very tough to suggest anyone picks Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl in the state it is in currently. It is very bare-bones in content, unbalanced, and feels soulless and cheap.

Apparently, the developers are looking to further add to the game post-release but this model makes it feel like an overpriced Early Access run. The basics just aren’t here for the game, and I can’t help but feel that between the memes and rollback inclusions, they just doubled down on meme culture to sell copies of the game and hoped the fighting game community would stick with it.


Platforms: PlayStation 4/5, XBox, Nintendo Switch,PC

If you enjoy Fighting games, perhaps you’d like to take a look at Demon Slayer: The Hinokami Chronicles?

Many thanks goes to GameMill Entertainment for a PlayStation 4 review code for this title.

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