Bubble Bobble is being released as a 4 player co-op on the Nintendo Switch!
Growing up in the 80s, the NES felt like the greatest invention in the world ever to me and my friends. While we spent most of the time mastering Mario, and unraveling Zelda, there were plenty of other games that we obsessed over. Contra, Megaman, Duck Hunt, Dr. Mario, Paperboy, Punch-out, Tecmo Superbowl, Battletoads, Metroid, Donkey Kong, and even Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.. the list stretches on and on..
One of the fondest and most addicting games we played was called Bubble Bobble... and it seems like this franchise is still holding strong after 3 decades, as the latest installment set to be released on the Nintendo Switch later this year.
Featuring two cutesy dragon brothers simply called, Bub and Bob The NES version of Bubble Bobble that I remember was unlike most of the violent 'destroy everything' games of the era. The premise, like most of the games of that time, is pretty forgettable. I think you were brothers who's girlfriends had been stolen by a evil magician or something, who also turned you into dragons and trapped you in a cave of monsters. Your job is to escape and save your girlfriends.
While it was a platform game, it was not a side scroller, like say Mario, or Double Dragon. This game had each level on one screen, and then when that level was beat, the next level would show up.. kinda like Donkey Kong. The only difference was you could jump down holes at the bottom of the screen and instead of dying, you would fall in from the top of the screen. In fact, using this mechanic of the game effectively was a key strategy for staying alive, especially in later levels.
The way to beat a level was to capture enemies in bubbles that the dragons were able to blow, and then jump on them before they broke out. Once all the enemies on the screen were defeated, the next level would scroll up. If you wanted to get to the end, you'd have to conquer 100 levels that got progressively harder and faster.. random items could help make you or your bubbles faster, etc. but we always scrambled to get the umbrella if it popped up. The umbrella would warp you ahead by skipping a random number of levels..
The thing that set this aside is that it was that while game can be played as Bub or Bob individually, it was one of the first games to be intentionally designed as a Co-op. In fact, if you somehow manage to beat all 100 levels on single-player mode, you're in for quite the disappointment..
[..that sux..] src
I don't think we ever beat the game, but we did get very far and had a lot of fun playing together and so it's kind of exciting to see that Nintendo is rehashing the game as a 4-player mode on it's newest console.. the Switch. If you want to pick it up this year you'll have to be in the European market, which has a November 2019 release date for the game.. otherwise, you'll have to wait until some time in 2020.
Personally, I most likely will NOT buy the new game, I'm sufficed to just reflecting fondly on my youth and good times with friends.. but I am happy that a newer generation can experience some classic co-op madness in the latest iteration of this classic arcade game.