It wouldn't be fair to compare BB4CPC with the other 8-bit versions, especially when considering the time line. Instead, what we have here is the best damn conversion, we could have ever wished for, on the humble CPC. It completely trounces Firebirds effort of the 1980's, and unlike the CPC original, in this new version, the bubbles can't simply be popped by walking straight into them (I always hated that).
Bubble Bobble now boasts 16 colours, mode 0 graphics, and looks a thing of beauty. The amount of on screen action, especially in two player mode is exceptional, and this is where the game really shows its true depth. I didn't notice any slowdown, and the variety of enemies that move about in their different patterns, especially considering the already complex scoring system, seriously has you wondering how 64K of memory was anywhere near enough.
If you've never played the coin-op version, you'll love it. If you have, you'll still appreciate the effort and hard work that has gone into this conversion, as the game play remains largely authentic. The programmer has sensibly gifted the community with as much of the original game as possible, without any added gimmicks (although a level editor and on line multiplayer would have been nice).
Comments from the community
Retro Gamer - Looks good, but I'd still venture the C64 version is better.
CPC WIKI - Much better than Firebird's version of the game.