Friday, February 24, 2006

Still some doubts about Bubble Bobble

The emulation of Bubble Bobble is already virtually perfect, but there is still a doubt about the clock item.

Currently, when you pick it up the enemies stop but the bubbles continue moving.

It would make sense if the bubbles stopped moving too, and this idea is corroborated by the way variables are set up in the MCU shared RAM. The MCU would be responsible for stopping the bubbles and make them start again when the clock effect ends.

What we need is to verify the behaviour on an original board. Bootlegs don't count (the clock behaviour is definitely wrong in them), nor do other emulator or ports count. Only the original board matters.

Can anyone help?

7 comments:

Nomax said...

Hi!
We just played through the game and saw the clock on two stages. On the first one, there were no bubbles coming from top or bottom of the screen, but we could still fire bubbles while time stood still. On the other stage, the clock appeared at a very tricky place and we couldn't catch it on time. Do you have a tip to have more clocks appear or know on which stages there's one?

Nicola Salmoria said...

Thanks for the feedback.
When you could fire bubbles, did they float normally after the initial horizontal movement, or did they stay still? E.g. if you bubbled an enemy did it float after being bubbled or did it remain in the place it was freezed?

The clock item appears after you've popped at least 12 lightning bubbles. The first level where lightning bubbles appear is round 17. So the quickest way to get to a clock item is to play to round 17 and pup at least 12 lightning bubbles, then the clock will appear in round 18.

Nomax said...

>When you could fire bubbles, did they float normally after the initial horizontal movement, or did they stay still?

They behave normally.

> E.g. if you bubbled an enemy did it float after being bubbled or did it remain in the place it was freezed?

I don't remember, I'll check as soon as I have some free time...

> The clock item appears after you've popped at least 12 lightning bubbles.

Didn't know that. Thanks for the tip, it'll be faster to check it!

Stay tuned! ;-)

MDARULZ said...

Hi Nicola - we've talked via e-mail in the past (you corrected an issue on the MAME emulation for The Glob that I wrote to you about).

Anyway, I've always been big into arcade gaming (the classics, of course), and now have my own web site - www.classicarcadegaming.com. OK, 'plug' over.

Now, to your question. I'm running a tourney at an arcae this month, and they have Bubble Bobble there, plus, the owner is an expert. I asked him about the clock stoppage issue, and he confirmed that what you observed (the enemies stop but the bubbles continue moving) is correct game behavior.

Well, thanks as always for your work and dedication to the MAME project. My only long-term 'gripe' is on the handling of mouse input, with regard to trak-ball games, with Crystal Castles being a prime example. I'm the former wr holder, and still own the arcade game. It's terrible to play on MAME, as both the speed (meaning, how much the character moves in relation to mouse movement), and the top speed (meaning, how fast the character can be moved, at the fastest) are both way off, as far as being much too low. I can finish the arcade game in my sleep (it ends upon completion of level 10), but have never come close on MAME, because of the mouse I/O issue. What's the problem with getting this adjusted, Nicola ??

metaterpe said...

I used to play Bubble Bobble in arcades, and the clock item did not freeze bubbles, which, by the way, were essential to reach enemies freezed in hard-to-reach points of the screen. Actually, sometimes enemies freezed in impossible places (like the upper limit of the screen, so that they were hidden and/or virtually unreachable), and, as in our arcade version of Bubble Bobble the effect of the clock item did not vanish at all, we were forced to turn off the machine and start playing from the beginning...

Nicola Salmoria said...

Thanks to all for the answers.

However I have to stress that only the original version of Bubble Bobble counts, therefore metaterpe's comment is not applicable. The effect of the clock item not vanishing is a typical symptom of the bootleg versions, so what happened to the bubbles in those versions is irrelevant to us.

James said...

Nicola,

I noticed you're credited on Taito Legends games.

How about a blog detailing your involvement and the accuracy of the ports?