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Proto:Puzzle Bobble (Arcade)

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This page details one or more prototype versions of Puzzle Bobble (Arcade).

Bubble Buster is the unreleased US version of the B-System Puzzle Bobble. A prototype B-System board containing a build of the game was found in 2021.

Notably, while the final Japanese game was released in June 1994, Bubble Buster appears to have been intended for release around the latter half of 1993.

To do:
  • Rip Bubble Buster music and sound effects and compare it with the Puzzle Bobble (B-System) ones.
  • Continue with Regional Differences


Compared to the Japanese version, some drastic changes were made. Notably, Bubblun and Bobblun from Bubble Bobble were completely removed. Curiously, a similar set of changes would be later made to the Taito F3 System version of Puzzle Bobble 2, Bust-a-Move Again, which did get released in the US.

Title Screen

Puzzle Bobble shows in a spacey background an animated sequence where twelve bubbles flying in the center of the screen then Bub and Bob join them. Then Bub and Bob appears on the edges of the screen and starts to fire bubbles from their mouth and starts to pop all the bubbles, then they jump on the last three remained bubbles revealing the title name. Finally, the title makes and a small dance in rhythm with the music and the sequence ends. Bubble Buster shows in a black background the a title game, bouncing twice and then approaching in rhythm with the music.

Japan US
PuzzleBobbleJPTitle.png BubbleBusterUSTitle.png

Game Mode Selection Screen

Apart from the text that was translated in English, Bubblun was removed from the game mode selection screen in the US version. Also to play the 2P VS mode, in the Japanese version, only a credit is required. While in the US version two credits are required.

Japan US
PuzzleBobbleJPModeSelect.png BubbleBusterUSModeSelect.png


Bubbluns/Bobbluns below the cross line were removed, the bag was replaced with a pipe, the golden arrow was recolored in a silver arrow, the Bubble Bobble enemies that are encased in the bubbles were removed and the waiting Bubblun/Bobblun in the bottom-left/bottom-right of the screen was removed.

Japan US
PuzzleBobbleJPGameplay.png BubbleBusterUSGameplay.png


In the Japanese version, the ending shows a plain "congratulations" screen followed by beautifully rendered scenes of all the characters from the game, followed by a credits sequence (where at the end, the Silverhawk and King Fossil from Darius make a cameo).

In the US prototype, the ending shows a plain "congratulations" screen with a different, less bubbly font. Notably, this is followed by a screen for a "Taito T-Shirt Challenge", displaying a scrambled sentence and a deadline of January 1, 1994.

Japan US
PuzzleBobbleCongratulations.png PuzzleBobbleEnding01.png

PuzzleBobbleEnding02.png PuzzleBobbleEnding03.png
PuzzleBobbleEnding04.png PuzzleBobbleEnding05.png