Friday, December 15

The Bubble Bobble Franchise

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Bubble Bobble , with Bub & Bob, not so famous as Mario and Luigi, but known by many and gotten real famous in the myriad of bust-a-move-clones. They are dinosaurs, nononono, not the fiersome sharptoothed reptiles! Their main weapon is bubbles! Yes, their enemies get trapped inside these bubbles, making them defensless. Essentially they become piñatas. As soon as Bub or Bob jump on them, goodies comes out of them. Well that’s basically it.




Bubble Bobble flyer


Not like you’d expect, but it was founded by a Russian: Michael Kogan, in 1953. It just rolled into the arcade business, starting to make vending machines, then coin-op machines, then pinballmachines, and in the 70’s arcademachines and the games for it.

Because of their big hit: Bubble Bobble, they survived the downfall of arcade and are now a daughtercompany of Square Enix. Still making games, but you’ll rarely see the names of the company on them.

Is Bubble Bobble the only game they made? No they had another great arcade hit, even one of the most famous: Space Invaders!

Space Invaders

Well not many other Taito games have reached the collective mind: Arkanoid, a known clone of the Break-out games, Darius, Full Throttle, the first Lufia game, Qix, later on they just made remakes of their games

Bubble Bobble

The game was released in 1986 on arcademachines,  it had music, fun music, a bit like a fair. loads of levels, the character became harder, they even spit fire and had lasers. It was successful and it has been ported to 34 other platforms, even to TI graphic calculators and mobile phones. Well the graphics, they weren’t revolutionary at all, just going with the flow, nothing special. Gameplay is addictive, short levels that keep you going, on and on, just a few more levels till your eyes got so dry and you wet your chair because you didn’t want to quit. For people that want to play it, just press start game. ^^

After that, many sequels followed: the next year there was “Rainbow Islands, The Story of Bubble Bobble 2” besides the graphics, lots of improvements has been made, it is full of secrets and riddles. The scoring system was a bit different, all these elements made it a very everlasting game.It was very succesful and got high ratings, even on the ports. 

Bubble Bobble 2 (aka: Bubble Symphony) brings two new characters in the game Kululun and Cororron. They have to fight the evil Hyper Drunk, because they were reading books. More Bosses, powercharged triplebubbles,  lots of enemies come from other taito games(ie Darius, Soace Invaders, Arkanoid,…) 

Bubble Bobble is still going, in 2009 Taito released “Bubble Bobble Plus!” for the Wii  containing the classic levels with 100 new and some expansions with very difficult levels. in 2010 Taito released “Bubble Bobble Neo!” for Xbox360, it doesn’t feature many news under the sun, 4-player support and some more bonuses.

Puzzle Bobble

Puzzle Bobble, released in 1994, also known as Bust-a-move, features Bub and Bob as hard working animals who fires the bubbles. You have to shoot same-coloured bubbles to pop them and thus remove all the bubbles from the playing field. Quite easy, depends, the playing field will drop, leaving you with less and less space to put your bubbles! Don’t lose your nerves, try to ignore the speeding music, be focused! As with most arcade games, the highscore is the most important, the ingenious highscoring where more bubbles popped will get your an exponent of the score, can make you take the risk to wait a little longer to pop lots of bubbles.

Puzzle Bobble got lots of recognisition and is still a popular game in clones, most usually in the form of casual flash games. In all sorts of forms.

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It had an enormous success and soon sequels have been made by Taito: “Puzzle Bobble 2” wich introduced tournaments,  No machine in the the third installment and the introduction of nodes and high playing fields. Also it has prettywetty rainbowbubbles ^^ 

“Puzzle Bobble 4” got a staggering 640 levels to complete. also it has a balancing system that even the playing field a bit. It got 7 modes including the multiplayer mode where you can choose different including the evil Develon, the archnemesis of Bub! Eevil EeeeeeeeeeeEEEeeeeeeevil!! MUHAHAHAAAAAAA HA!

The latest versions by Taito are on the wii: ‘Puzzle Bobble Plus!”; “Puzzle Bobble Live” for Xbox360 and simply Puzzle Bobble(why change the name) for the Iphone.

Clones of the games are “Frozen Bobble”, “Snood”, “Bubble Shooter” and “Squirrel Bobble”

Well I hoped you enjoyed reading. Hope you like the included games.

Till the next read!


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