Bubble Bobble 4 Friends, the latest game in Taito's classic co-op arcade platformer series, released on PlayStation and Switch a while back and later received extra levels with 'The Baron is Back' update. The next logical step for Taito and publisher ININ would seem to be the release of Xbox and PC versions. Sadly, Taito continues to avoid showing Xbox any love, but a Steam version is finally happening. It will be called Bubble Bobble 4 Friends: The Baron's Workshop, and it will feature a brand-new level editor.
Every version of Bubble Bobble 4 Friends is a 2.5D sequel to Bubble Bobble, featuring 3D characters on a 2D plane. Gameplay closely resembles that of the original Bubble Bobble. Players take on the role of Bub, Bob, or one of their girlfriends as they navigate scores of challenging single-screen platforming levels. To defeat enemies, our heroes must blow bubbles onto the baddies and then burst the bubble before the foe can escape. Gameplay additions over the classic arcade game include the ability to duck and crawl, special equippable power-up bubbles, and 4-player local co-op.
Bubble Bobble 4 Friends: The Baron's Workshop will feature all of the content of Bubble Bobble 4 Friends: The Baron is Back, and, for the first time in the series, a level editor. Levels can be shared online. Considering that reviews of the first version of Bubble Bobble 4 Friends harped on the number of built-in levels (it launched with only 100 levels), a level editor seems like a pretty terrific solution to those issues.
- 1-4 player couch co-op.
- 4 Friends – With 100 stages to take on!
- Arcade of the Future – Play 100 more super-difficult stages with no continues for pro Bubble Bobble players.
- The Baron’s Workshop – create, share and download new Bubble Bobble stages with players around the world.
- Original Arcade Mode – A faithful port of the classic Bubble Bobble for 1-2 players, with scanlines and screen ratio options for a truly authentic arcade experience.
- Global online leaderboards – Challenge your friends’ best scores across every game mode.
As a huge Bubble Bobble fan, I'm glad the series will finally see a Steam version. Bubble Bobble 4 Friends: The Baron's Workshop will release sometime this summer.
Speaking of Bubble Bobble, don't forget that the upcoming Taito Egret II Mini arcade cabinet will feature the three true Bubble Bobble arcade games: Bubble Bobble, Bubble Symphony, and Bubble Memories. The Egret II Mini is due out in Japan on March 2, 2022, and will include 40 arcade games.