Bubble Bobble.

Issue 30. 1987.
Firebird, £ 9.95, cass, £ 14.95 disk, joystick only.

Gold Medal (8k)

Downloads: Download the game No documentation Available

S. J.
I 'd only ever seen the arcade machine once before playing the 64 version, so I'm not terribly prejudiced one way or the other as to the quality of the conversion. The game is technically adept, with heaps of things whizzing all over the screen and the great graphics - endowed with loads of 'cute' appeal and plenty of character. It's the gameplay however, that brings the game into its own - it's unbelievably addictive. If you buy this on a Saturday, you can kiss the rest of your weekend goodbye! Having seen most of the 100 screens (we've got a cheat version here in the office), I can safely say that you're in for a pretty tough time. Play on your own - or better still, play with a friend, but either way - play! This has got to be one of the best platform games of all time if not the best!

Now it is the start of a fantastic journey! Let's make a journey to the cave of monsters.' And so begins a strange and surreal adventure through 100 cavesS filled with bubble-spitting Brontosaurii, horrific hostiles, exotic fruits, wonderful presents and a large assortment of generally useful items. Each cave consists of a screen filled Swith platforms, and progression from one to another occurs when the entire screen has been cleared.

Title Screenshot (5K)


An initial decision is made between either one or two-player mode. Choose the single player option however, and a second player can still join in at any time during the action. When the start button is pressed, the Brontosaurii appear at the bottom left and right. Shortly after, the hostile cavedwellers emerge and rush around the network of platforms. These are deadly to touch, and should be avoided at all costs.  

The only means of defence are the bubbles which a 'saurus spits when the fire button is depressed. A bubble travels forward a short distance before floating upward, and any creature caught in its horizontal path becomes trapped, and is helpless about its predicament. Now the fun begins - if the bronto jumps up and pops the bubble with his tough horny head, the creature within bounces around the screen, stunned, and turns into a banana which is collected for an extra score. Bubbles always mass at the top of the screen, and a cluster of bubbled enemies can be bust at the same time, resulting in different fruits worth bigger points.

level 5  Screenshot (4K)

Bubble Bobble is one of my favourite arcade games at the moment, and I must confess to waiting for this conversion with some trepidation. After all, there have been so many disappointments lately, with pale, bastardised imitations of original arcade games being the usual result of a conversion. Imagine my surprise when Firebird's conversion turned out to be one of the finest yet seen on the Commodore. All the features of the 100 screen arcade game have been included, and the graphics, music and gameplay are about as close as you're ever going to get. The action is maddeningly addictive, and I've been playing it solidly since it came into the office. There's so much depth, and so many different features, like working out how to trigger the mega-bonuses and how to break into the hidden screen. Bubble Bobbie is simply superb - a licensing triumph which shouldn't be missed at any cost.

Julian Rignall

Greed is a terrible thing though, and if a dinosaur waits too long for bubbles tSo mass, the creatures can escape. Their constant struggling weakens the bubble wall and they break through after 15 seconds or so. An escapee is a horrible sight, all red and angry, and rushing around the screen In a complete strop, looking for the brontosaurus responsible far his imprisonment.
It's a rare and beautiful occasion when a great arcade machine is perfectly converted - but thankfully this is one such event. No matter what format it appears in, there are very few games which generate as much fun as Bubble Bobbie - and even watching two other people playing is marvelously entertaining! After all, this is the game with everything that your average games player could ever want - Wacdonald's fries, the evil count, cuddly monsters and alcohol-free lager! Although it's basically a two-player game, it's still a real pleasure to play on your own. So go out and get it now and experience some fun graphics, silly sounds, whacky gameplay and, most importantly, a lot of laughs.

Another hazard which appears if a screen is not cleared quickly enough is the dreaded Baron von Blubba. This indestructible horror emerges to track down the heroic dinos, eventually giving his fatal touch if all the other creatures aren't destroyed quickly enough.

Throughout a level, bubbles float up from the bottom of the screen. Some of these are water-filled and cause a mini-flood when burst. This then pours down the screen, sweeping away any creature that stands In its path. Other bubbles contain letters, with an extra life awarded if the word E X T E N D is formed. On some screens, bubbles containing lightning can also be burst to send deadly bolts of electricity whizzing across the screen.

level 6  Screenshot (4K)

Goodies appear randomly, either giving extra points, or endowing the prehistoric pair with special bronto-powers. Trainers for example, give a Bronto extra speed, and a Lamp either gives faster bubble-producing abilities or extra fire-spitting capabilities. Sometimes an object sets off a reaction - such as filling the screen with water, killing all dwellers within, causing a huge explosion or sending huge bolts of lightning from above. On very rare occasions, collecting an item makes all the hostiles disappear and the screen becomes filled with objects - which are collected within a 20 second time limit for a 100,000 points bonus.

As the dinosaurs progress through the levels, all manner of creatures are encountered. Early levels are inhabited by square-headed morons, whereas later screens contain boulder-lobbing ghosts, flying fish, helicopter hippos, springing things, gremlins and missile-dropping Space Invaders. When the 100th screen is reached, the extremely large chief cave-dweller appears and is bubbled many, many times before dropping the final curtain and joining the choir invisible.

level 7  Screenshot (4K)

Finally, there's a secret screen which is revealed when a special fruit-collecting sequence is completed. Can you find it?

Presentation 92%
One or two player mode, a hidden level, and good on-screen presentation.
Graphics 84%
Extremely 'cute' and highly detailed sprites, finished off with great use of colour all round.
Sound 87%
A jolly soundtrack plays throughout, exactly like the arcade game's.
Hookability 9% Instant appeal and massive addiction.

Lastability 91%
One hundred screens of highly addictive action, with plenty of depth.
Overall 97%
A superlative conversion which retains all of the fun and features of the original.
Note : This article was originally on Alex's "Brigadoon - Zzap!64 Online" site, which has closed down while he's gone on a world trip and eventually planning to live and work in Dublin, Ireland. According to his farewell message on his site he gives premission to grab and download any pages of use. I contacted him directly to request permission to actually use those pages on this site and he agreed. His site will be offline (for at least a while) and these articles shouldn't be lost. Should he request it or his site comes back at a later stage, I'll delete these related files.

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