In 1986, Taito released an innocent game called Bubble Bobble. It featured two humans who had been transformed into dinosaur protagonists. They were named “Bub” and “Bob” and appropriately enough, they blew bubbles. They captured enemies in these bubbles, and then would have to pop them—which turned the baddies into food. Simple, abstract and adorable Bubble Bobble had great gameplay and a VERY memorable tune serving as background music. The game appeared on the NES, and was one of a handful of games for the system that allowed simultaneous 2 person co-operative play.
The Bub & Bob characters endured, appearing as humans in the follow-up, Rainbow Islands. The characters continued to return in various sequels. Years after their debut, they appeared in the 1993 game “Puzzle Bobble.” Instead of blowing bubbles, Bub & Bob fired multiple colored balls to the top of the screen. The colored balls stick together and once three balls of the same color are connected, they burst, clearing room on the game screen. If you are unable to eliminate the balls in a timely manner, they will begin to accumulate. If the balls mount up pass the boundary line, well… “Game over, man!”
For reasons unknown, the game appeared in North America as “Bust a Move,” which would later caused Enix’s rhythm & dance game of the same name to be renamed to “Bust-a-Groove” in the States (but that’s quite a different story…). Bust-a-Move became intensely popular, and has subsequently received sequels & re-releases across many video game systems without ever changing very much at all.To date, 7 versions have been released on almost every console (PlayStation, PS2, Game Boy, PC, Dreamcast, Nintendo 64) and all of them have been successful, selling millions of copies around the world.
On the N64, the dinos faced off against several classic bad guys and characters from Taito’s other video games—many which had not been seen outside of Japan previously. On the Dreamcast, characters were more detailed and animated than before. For Bust-a-Move 4, players could actually play each other over the Internet. Throughout all the iterations & additions, the game has remained essentially the same.
Now Ubi Soft will publish the latest incarnation of this classic puzzler on Game Boy Advance and have released details regarding the game during this year’s ECTS. Called Super Bust-a-Move, the handheld version breaks down into 565 puzzle screens that comprise 311 total levels spread across 27 funny “universes” (26 plus one bonus one universe that is unlocked). This time around, there will be six types of bubble balls. Alongside one of the familiar dinos, have been seen many oversized, colorful creatures. There will be 10 characters in all. Screenshots seem to show the green dino blowing bubbles so the classic character may not be playable himself. The creatures shown as playable characters are very… different, than the competitors seen in previous games.
The characters may look weird and a little simple, the graphics in the game seem highly improved. The game has a detailed look and is somewhat textured, reminiscent to the appearance of backgrounds in Yoshi’s Story for N64.
Although the version on N64 sported four-player VS modes, it seems that this version will only allow two people to go head-to-head. Even more discouraging, you’ll need two copies of the game along with your link cable.
Hardcore gamers will almost certainly have (or played to death) at least one version of the game before, but its portability may give “jaded” fans pause. For people who haven’t played this game, this will be a very good version to pick up, and pocket for on the go. Its game play rivals Tetris, plus it has that cute anime dinosaur thing going for it…
A release date for Super Bust-a-Move has not been set as of yet. We’ll post about any additional details we learn as they surface.
That’s right! Thanks to Ubi Soft, one of the greatest puzzle games is coming to Game Boy Advance. We’re so happy with the news that we couldn’t help but do a preview straight away! Get the skinny on the latest version of this addictive series!...
by Max Lake - September 3, 2001
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