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Bubble Bobble Advanced Information

Secret Levels

There are three secret levels, which you can access from levels 20, 30 and 40 if you make it there without having died. (Or regardless of having died if you use the "original game" cheat). A silver door will appear; enter it and you'll be taken to a room full of diamonds. Diamonds aren't the only point to these secret levels though...

Gareth Hall's FAQ says to look for hidden messages in the secret levels, using the first block of strange characters as the letters A to Z to translate the second block into a message. So I had a look and translated the messages. In order, the three messages translate as follows (in the original Japanese English ;-)):

"If you want to become the old figure,use the power of your friendship,and fight with me"
"I enclose these magical medicine here,because those are my worst fears...."
"If you want to get back your love of truth,you must help each other untill the last......."

The first refers to returning to your human form, "old figure" means "old form". The second refers to the lightning-bubble potions that will be available on level 100 to kill the bad guy. I guess that "worst fears" probably means "nastiest weapons" or something. The phrase "love of truth" in the final one should probably read "true love", refering to your girlfriends who've been captured.

And, last but not least, at the end of the game (after level 100), there is 1 last encrypted message telling you the cheat for "Super Bubble Bobble" mode. I have seen a "Bobble Bobble" arcade game once when I was on holiday which was permanently set to "Super Bobble Bobble" mode on the title, screen, and according to Oliver White (see thanks list), it is a DIP switch setting in some games which just cheats away the cheat and dumps all our hard work down the drain. :-(

The "TRUE and HAPPY Ending"

Well... there's been a lot of talk about this next section; it's not a rebel section. Here're the details...

When you finish the game normally, you get an ending (duh). Of course, this is not the real ending, just one put in to make the kids in the arcade happy. The real ending happens when you play in "Super" mode; that is when you input the title screen cheat which makes the cloud read "Super Bubble Bobble", not just "Bubble Bobble". Then you play the second 50 levels' monsters on the first levels 50 and vice-versa, and you get the "True and Happy ending". It has also been rumoured that if you finish the game with at least one player never having died, you get a different ending from the original one. I tend to believe this, seeing that a similar thing happens on Rainbow Islands... but can you find anyone who can finish Bubble Bobble on their own on one life? ;-)

Title Screen Cheats

These cheats come from the Bubble Bobble FAQ written by Gareth Hall. They need to be typed in while the title screen is displayed. For those battling to find out which is the title screen, it's the one that says "Bubble Bobble" in a cloud. (L = Left, R = Right, U = Up, D = Down, B = Bubble, J = Jump, S = Start (1 player button)) You can enter more than one cheat by entering one, waiting while the attract mode stuff happens, and then entering another one before putting the coin in.

LJLSLBLS It will say "power up!" at the bottom of the screen and you will have fast feet, and fast bubbles.
BJBJBJRS It will say "original game..." at the bottom of the screen and the secret level doors will appear regardless of whether you have died.
SJBLRJSR This enters the "super game", it will add "super" to the title screen. You play the game with the nasty monsters substituted for the nice monsters and vice versa. (This one isn't really a cheat as such because the game tells you to do it when you finish the game in normal mode so that you can get the true and happy ending.)

High Score Cheats

There are a number of letter combinations that you can enter if you get a high score that will have an effect on the next game. These cheats give you a special item to use on the frist screen of the next game. (Might be a later screen if the game gives you some other special item on the first screen e.g. the silver bell). I am pretty sure that these are all the high score cheats because I found them together in one of the ROM files. (And then Chris Moore said that there were no more too :-)) Pictures of the items are here.

codeitemitem's effect
TAKoctopusall remaining bubbles turn into wooden crosses worth 700
STRflamingoall remaining bubbles turn into pink dogs worth 700
KTTglass mugall remaining bubbles turn into pizzas worth 700
SEXforkfruit and vegetables fall from the sky and kill enemies (using this will actually put H.! into the high score leaderboard)
...knifevaluable food items fall from the sky and kill enemies
can of colaorange potion items fall from the sky and kill enemies

Number of Potion Items Given

The number of items that appear when you pick up a potion seems to be constant for each level. This number if not stored anywhere; it gets worked out at run-time. If you get a potion on a screen that's not here please let us know how many items you get. :-)

1or 56?
2or 62?

DIP Switches

Most of the DIP switches in the arcade game are self-explanatory, eg. lives (2,3,etc). The one that confused me was "bonus", which can be set to 30/100, 20/80,40/200 or 50/250. What this turns out to be, is the score (in 1000's) that you get lives on:

settingget a life on
30/10030 000, 100 000, 400 000
20/8020 000, 80 000, 300 000
40/20040 000, 200 000, 500 000
50/25050 000, 250 000, 500 000
Other DIP switches are lives (1/2/3/5), Difficulty (medium/easy/hard/hardest), coin slots (1credit 1player/2 credit 3player/etc), attract sound (title screen music), test screen (makes the screen white and crashes) and screen (upright/invert).

Interesting feature about level 97

This is pointed out in Oliver White's FAQ. On level 97, it is possible to get the game stuck in a state where you have no way to die and no way out of the level. This is the only level in the game where you always have infinite time to complete it, and Baron von Blubba never comes to get you. This makes it a great place to take a breather as it can take an hour or more to get this far. However, with some fairly tricky Moves it is possible to pop a water bubble inside an area with no outlet and a monster inside. (There is a screenshot of this on his page).

The water sloshes back and forth for eternity, and the level never ends because there is infinite time and the last monster never leaves it. Once the other monsters are killed, there is no way to die, so the only way out is to switch the machine off! This Move could be used by unscrupulous players to gain a free credit in an arcade by claiming the machine had crashed. :-)

Also, if a monster throws his paddle/spade thing at you in a certain position on this level it will bounce between two walls for ever, with the same result as before.)

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This page last changed 2000/04/01