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Bugaboo (The Flea)

aka: Booga-Boo (The Flea), La Pulga, Roland in the Caves
Moby ID: 14332
ZX Spectrum Specs

Description

A Flea arrives on board of a space probe at the Cebolla-7 planet, an intricate labyrinth of caverns. The objective is to find the exit to each maze-like level. This isn't so easy as the player must ascend very carefully, avoiding protruding rocks and branches and taking care to not fall (which forces the player to start again from the ground level). The only enemy here is a Pterodactilous that will do everything it can to devour the flea. It is not always present, but when it attacks the flea must avoid it.

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Screenshots

Credits (ZX Spectrum version)

By
Special effect
Cover artwork by

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 65% (based on 11 ratings)

Players

Average score: 2.8 out of 5 (based on 14 ratings with 2 reviews)

A frustrating and limited experience

The Good
Bright and colourful graphics and a cheery tune set the tone for what should be a fun and entertaining game...

The Bad
.... which all comes crashing down when you land at the bottom of the cave, are confronted by an awkward jumping mechanic that isn't captured properly by the game's graphics to let you see how far your jumping; and are invariably munched by that pterodactyl!

The Bottom Line
While it becomes easier to get the feel after a few goes - the cavern itself never really changes - just a few extra hazards added so really if you escape once, you've seen the entire game.

Amstrad CPC · by Ritchardo (2896) · 2023

An original, well presented game offering lots of replayability

The Good
The early Eighties saw the rise of Spanish software houses, and the first one of these was Indescomp (headed by programmers Paco & Paco). Their first game, Bugaboo, is well presented. It was original at the time and was a breath of fresh air from the many clones of various arcade games. It was also one of the first games to feature cut-scenes. Publisher Quicksilva made it clear on the cover that Bugaboo is the flea you control in the game. Various home computer ports were produced under different names, and the Commodore 64 version was called Booga-Boo.

Booga-Boo decided he would rather cruise through space than move around in the fur of cats and dogs. One day, he beams down on Cebolla-7, an unknown planet full of life, and upon exploring, he accidentally stumbles onto the wrong spot and falls down to the bottom of the cavern, and this is where you come into the picture. Using the joystick, you need to guide Booga-Boo to the top by hopping onto the various platforms and ledges. This is achieved by pushing it in the desired direction to make a red gauge appear on the screen, and then holding it for as long as you can to make him hop higher than normal. Both timing and position are crucial; try to hop onto a platform or ledge from the wrong position, and you’ll likely ricochet off them. Don’t gain enough momentum, and you’ll miss. Fortunately, the flea is very strong and can withstand long falls.

You can press the fire button while holding the joystick left or right. This lets you scroll the screen in the respective direction and find out for yourself if there are any dangers nearby, such as Venus flytraps and yellow pterodactyls. Contact with any of these creatures, and you’re out of the game. I found that unlike the other ports that also feature a pterodactyl, the C-64 variant is the more dangerous; it always homes in on your position, and it is rather difficult to evade when you are in close proximity with it. A timer is located at the bottom, but this counts up instead of down. It is there so that you can write down the time it took you to reach the top - if you wish - and beat that time when you play your next game.

Judging by the YouTube clips I have seen, Booga-Boo only has one level. Once you complete it, you see a cut-scene, and then you are asked to enter your name. Because there are different routes you can take to the top, the game is worth playing more than once. The way the graphics are presented reminds me of those from BC’s Quest for Tires. The developers took a lot of time designing the environment; there are mushrooms, plants, trees jutting out of the platforms, and even blinking eyes that don’t pose a threat to you. I like how the background music suits the gameplay and doesn’t get boring the more times you hear it. Outside the game, the credits are well presented; I like watching both the QS and Indescomp logos get drawn on the screen.

The Bad
When you start a new game, you have to watch Booga-Boo as he jumps down to the bottom of the cavern, and watching this scene again and again every time you start gets tedious. Why couldn’t the developers let players bypass this by hitting a key? Also, the title screen looks hideous.

The Bottom Line
This is an original game where the object is to get your flea to the top of the cavern without running into any creatures. Both timing and placement are required to jump onto the platforms and ledges, and a little trial and error is necessary. The graphics and animations are excellent, and so is the sound. But the big plus for the game is the replayability it has to offer. If you are into the kind of games where timing is crucial, then this game is worth a try.

Commodore 64 · by Katakis | カタキス (43091) · 2022

Trivia

Legacy

This game was largely responsible for the rise of Spanish software houses, being one of the first games developed in Spain.

Awards

  • Zzap!
    • May 1985 (Issue 1) - #61 'It's the Zzap! 64 Top 64!'

Analytics

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Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 14332
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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Kohler 86.

ZX Spectrum added by Martin Smith. Amstrad CPC, MSX added by koffiepad.

Additional contributors: formercontrib, nicholas mccolm, FatherJack.

Game added August 10, 2004. Last modified January 18, 2024.