ボンバーマン ユーザーズバトル / Bomberman Users Battle
Battle (defeat all Bombermen)
1 to 5 (battle)
Users Battle was a limited edition game with approximately only 1,000 copies produced. Some were distributed at Hudson Bomberman tournaments, though its main purpose appears to have been for demonstration purposes in demo kisoks. (source)
The game is literally just the multi-player mode on a standalone Hu-Card. That title screen is the only thing you won't see in the regular retail version.
Click to enlarge. Cropped from the Japanese manual, and edited (poorly) to remove overlapping text.
This music was recorded using the game's sound test.
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Stage Theme 1
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Stage Theme 2
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Stage Theme 3
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Final Boss intro
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Final Boss theme
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Fire Suit theme
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Ending, part 1
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Ending, part 2
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[unused track 1]
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[unused track 2]
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[unused track 3]
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[unused track 4]
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[unused track 5]
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Page 7, "Enemy Characters & The Big Bosses", is host to some mildly amusing errors. The images for Shashakin and Nagacham are switched, as are Boyon's and Pontan's.
In addition, Telpio (Terupyo) has a solid black rectangle where his mouth is. I presume this is due to the strictly black-and-white printing, and not due to someone taking offence to the abstract octopus thing's lips.
Alongside their MS-DOS, Amiga and Atari ST ports (see below), Ubi Soft had a Commodore 64 port planned alongside them, even going so far as printing instructions for it in the shared manual. The game never saw release, however, but was available for pre-order in German magazine Power Play , and was only ever previewed in German magazine Play Time (issue unknown). See Games That Weren't for more information.
The American release renames most of the options, updates the copyright date, and adds a trademark to the logo.
The Multitap was recoloured for the American release to resemble the TurboTap, adding additional details to complete the resemblance.
Likewise, the console and controller were redrawn from a PC Engine to a TurboGrafx-16 on the "Multitap not connected" screen.
This port was developed by System Software. Its resolution is 256x256, so you have a greater vertical visibility than on the PC Engine (the PC Engine can display in 256x242, and I haven't a good excuse for why I don't take screenshots in that size).
It drops the GT-link option for obvious reasons, and adds its porting credit to the bottom.
The multi-player is limited to 4 players. After selecting the number of players, each player must press a button on their input of choice - either a joypad or the keyboard (which can support two players - the left side uses ESDF to move, the right side uses arrow keys).
The screen resolution is 256x232, giving a slightly taller screen. There's a new logo, updated copyright, the clouds are missing, and the "LOAD" and GT-link options have been dropped, replaced with a new "SETUP" choice.
The "setup" option allows you to configure the controls for player 1 and 2, allowing usage of both the keyboard and any compatible gamepads. "TEST VGA" will make the logo scroll back and forth so you can tweak the settings until it scrolls smoothly.
The Battle mode only allows up to 4 players (how the controls for players 3 and 4 are configured is beyond me), though the icon for player 5 still appears on the Battle HUD.
This port was developed by Actionomics. The game runs in a variable resolution - probably 320x240 with black borders, though I cropped the borders in a futile attempt at neatness.
The animated clouds are gone, the GT-link option is removed, as is the saving and loading function. Despite the date of 1991, the closest release date I can find for the game is "early April" of 1992, cited in Amiga Power issue 12.
Since the game runs off a 3'5 inch floppy disc, there are loading times when a new mode or world is entered.
The battles against Warpman and Setsutore are modified for this version: Warpman doesn't warp, and rather than spawning enemies, the battle begins with around eight or ten of them on the field. You also fight three Warpmans rather than two.
Setsutore has lost its flame spray attack, and can do naught but wander aimlessly and periodically activate its force field.
The final battle is also slightly different: There is no introductory march before the battle with Black Bomberman; the transforming Bombermen do not spray projectiles; and Black Bomberman has no attacks whatsoever, he simply walks and lets his shield periodically deactivate.
The ending stops after Lisa hugs Bomberman, with no scene of Black's castle crumbling. This also makes use of a sprite that the original game does not - see below.
This version also has a brand new staff roll, set against a starfield and newly composed music, crediting the PC-Engine original staff, and the conversion staff at Actionomics.
The game runs in 320x200, squashing the screen somewhat. The GT-link option is removed, as is the saving and loading function.
The HUD is displayed as a vertical sidebar, making the most of the space and meaning you have the exact same visiblity as you would on the PC Engine.
Bosses don't flash when they are hit, so there's no visual indicator that you are damaging them.
In addition to the omissions mentioned in the Amiga version, this version also truncates the intro cutscene (it fades out before Black Bomberman flies to his castle) and removes the staff roll entirely!
This version also uses newly composed music, replacing many of the original tracks for wholly new tunes.
Found among Black Bomberman's ending graphics of him skidding to a halt. These sprites actually see use in the Amiga and Atari ST versions to segue between his running and begging animations.
Also, a really pedantic observation, but all of Black's ending graphics have a palette slot for his belt buckle, but it's coloured the same colour as the rest of his belt. Yeah. Impress your friends with that knowledge, buddy.
The sound test is home to several unused tracks, two of which wouldn't find a home until five years later!
Track 2D is a slowed-down remix of the Game Over theme that loops. Compare to the used version.
Track 36 is the first boss theme from Super Bomberman 3!
Track 37 is the second boss theme from Super Bomberman 3!
Track 38 is an extended remix of the Bomberman NES title theme.
Track 39 is an alternate death theme.