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Bubble Bobble 2

Bubble Bobble 2

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Bubble Bobble Part 2 is a game in the Bubble Bobble series. Never released in the arcade, two versions of the game were developed independently from each other (for the NES and Game Boy formats), with each game receiving a different storyline as a result. The Game Boy version is also known as Bubble Bobble Junior.

Story

According to the NES version's manual this game would supposedly star Bub and Bob as the original duo[2]. However, the protagonists are actually intended to be Cubby and Robby, their descendants (hence the name "Junior" used both in the NES game's bonus rounds and in the alternate title of the GB port - see Notes for more information).

As seen in the game intro, Cub, and a girl named Judy, were sitting in a park. Suddenly, a floating skull character captures Judy into a bubble, and sends her and Cub into the air. Two characters named Drunk (from the original Bubble Bobble) follow the skull and take Judy away. Cub turns into a bubble dragon and heads off to rescue his girlfriend. There is also a two-player mode, leading one to assume that Rob has suffered the same events as Cub had. However, the manual states that Judy is a friend of both.

In the Game Boy version, Rob has to rescue people from a village, who are assumed to have been captured by the skull character.

The NES version actually features three Skull Brothers as the final villains. This story was anticipated in the Rainbow Islands arcade version's ending, which was left in Japanese but revealed that the spirit of the final boss, the giant Skel-Monsta had, upon dying, split into three that would eventually come back as the Skel Brothers to be fought by Bub and Bob's descendants a hundred years later (consequently this game would take place at least one generation or more after the events of Bubble Symphony).

Enemies

Many enemies from the original Bubble Bobble appear in this one. However, the NES manual gives some of them different names. As well, newer enemies appear.

Existing Enemies

Some of the existing enemies include:

Uncategorized Japanese Game Manual Instruction Booklet
Bubble Buster Zen-Chan Hoppit
Beluga Monsta Slider
Hullaballoon Pulpul Nimbus
Coiley Banebou Apogo
Baron von Blubba Skel-Monsta Sawbones

New Enemies in the NES Version

Here are some of the newer enemies in the game.

Needler

It has a spring-like body and stays in place. It has a needle hat on its head. If a player goes above him, it fires the needle to attempt to kill the player.

Chucker

It spits rocks at players that move adjacent to it.

Flarion

A fire-type character. The small fireballs it fires move upward and slightly outward, and then fall toward the bottom of the screen. It stays in place. The only way to kill it is to rapidly fire bubbles at it, because it usually quickly "grows" back to its full size.

Snagger

A tall white mechanical enemy with a cat's head. It extends its head toward players that move close to it and tries to bite them.

Among Collectors

Because of its late release on the NES, Bubble Bobble Part 2 is exceptionally hard to find and is somewhat sought after by collectors. Loose copies of the game routinely sell on eBay for between $100 and $150.[3] Complete-in-box copies of the game carry prices ranging between $300 and $400 on eBay and Amazon.com.[4]

The game was only available on the rental market, making it difficult to find even at the time of its release.

Development Notes

  • The game's plot was originally preannounced in Rainbow Islands. Obtaining the true ending in the Arcade version of that game, would display a screen with text in katakana. Oddly this was presented as the "Legend of Bubble Bobble 3". Below, the enemies of the original Bubble Bobble were seen as they turned into human beings. This last bit doesn't seem to have any particular significance.
  • There are a few bonus games after each world (after an area boss is defeated) in the NES version, or if the character heads into a secret door in a world.
  • Cubby/Robby changes back into a human in the "good ending" of both versions.
  • In the NES version, the bubble dragons are larger than the enemies (and more cute than usual, probably due to the simplicity of the game sprites). In the Game Boy version, the dragons and the enemies are about the same size.
  • The back of the box of the NES version states that the two main characters are named Cubby and Robby[5], but the manual contradicts that, and says their names are Bub and Bob.
  • In the Game Boy version, the starring character is named Robby.
  • In the NES version, in the bonus games, the starring characters are named "Junior".
  • In the Game Boy version, the player has a sort of spiritual guide (he just shows up but does nothing) helping them that looks kind of like a Viking. It is unknown whether this character is referenced in other Taito games or what other meaning there may be to him.
  • By holding the 'Bubble' button, the character can inflate and become able to float, as long as the bubble button is held and the character does not touch a hazard.
    • In the NES version, the characters actually inflate.
    • In the Game Boy version, a bubble forms around the character.
  • Though there is a mention of a Cave of Monsters when beginning the NES version (it is only a copy of the opening script of Bubble Bobble), there isn't one in the game. Most of the game takes place under skies, though the world bosses' levels take place in caves.

References

  1. RottenTomatoes.com review
  2. Bubble Bobble Part 2 instruction manual
  3. eBay completed items listings - Registration needed
  4. Amazon.com Marketplace listing for Bubble Bobble 2
  5. Back cover of NES version from RottenTomatoes.com