Puyo Pop Fever
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|Puyo Pop Fever|
North American GameCube cover art
|Publisher(s)||Sega, Atlus, THQ, Ignition Entertainment|
|Distribution||DVD-ROM x1 (PS2, Xbox)
Nintendo optical disc (GC)
Puyo Pop Fever, known as Puyo Puyo Fever (ぷよぷよフィーバー Puyo Puyo Fībā ) in Japan, is the fifth installment in the popular Puyo Puyo puzzle game series, developed by Sonic Team, released on a wide variety of systems in several regions. Sega published all the Japanese versions of the game; the game was scarcely released internationally, and versions of it were released by other publishers. North America only received the Nintendo GameCube and DS versions, whereas Europe received all domestic and major handheld versions. Sonic Team acquired the rights to develop the series from former publisher Compile, after they went bankrupt prior to the release of Sonic Team's first Puyo Puyo game Puyo Pop. The NAOMI port to Dreamcast was the last Dreamcast game developed by Sonic Team.
Ms. Accord, a teacher at the Primp Magic School, has lost her Flying Cane, the equivalent of a magic wand, and claims to have a reward for the student who can find it. The player plays the role of either Amitie or Raffine, students at the school, as they venture across the Puyo Pop Fever world to find the cane, while meeting many wacky characters along the way and battling them. Raffine's course contains more difficult gameplay and alters the characters the player meets, as well as which character actually finds the wand. When playing as Raffine near to the end of the game, it is revealed that Accord never actually lost her flying cane. Raffine then plans on revealing her and Popoi's secret, but fails in her ending, as she is knocked unconscious by Ms. Accord, losing all memories of the flying cane incident. She regains consciousness near her school where Amitie and her friends congratulate her.
The basic game mechanics are mainly similar to those of Puyo Puyo: the player has a 6x12 board, and must decide where to place incoming groups of variously-colored blobs, or puyo. After placing each set of puyo, any groups of four or more of the same colored adjacent puyo will pop. Any above will fall down and can form more groups for a chain reaction. Each time groups of puyo pop, the player will score points and, more importantly, send trash (aka garbage and nuisance) to their opponent. These trash puyo are colorless and will only pop when puyo next to them do so, rather than in groups as normal. When a player's board fills up, either if they cannot make groups or if they are sent a large amount of trash (usually the latter), they lose and the other player will win.
A new addition to the game mechanics is fever mode. Fever mode occurs when a bar in the middle of the screen is filled up. To fill the bar, one must offset (or counterattack) the trash being sent to the field by the opponent. Every chain, which is a single popping of puyo, will fill one space in the fever meter until it is full, which is when fever activates. In fever mode, a pre-designed chain will fall onto an empty field. In a limited amount of time, one must find a trigger point in the puzzle, which will cause a large chain to go off and attack the opponent. Once a chain is made, another puzzle falls, bigger and more complicated than the previous one. This keeps occurring until time runs out, then it returns the player to his or her original field.
The Nintendo DS version supports 2 to 8 players, as opposed to the others which only support 2 or 4. In this mode, one can play as any available character.
There is also an endless mode, where one can practice fever mode, complete small tasks as they are given, or play the original game. However, the grid and all clear rules remain the same as they do in fever, so it's not exactly classic (in the original Puyo Pop series, you could use the top of the fourth column fully for building chains if needed. If you fill it all the way in this form of endless, you lose).
The different characters of Puyo Pop Fever offer different gameplay. With the addition of groups of three and four Puyos, unlike previous Puyo Pop games, each character has his or her own pattern of which different types of Puyo groups fall onto the field. All the characters are playable in most of the game modes, the only exception being Story Mode, where one must be Amitie or Raffine, respectively. There are also two hidden characters, one possessing a powerful pattern of Puyo groups. Most of their names derive from different languages.
- Amitie (アミティ Amitī )
- Amitie is a spunky, adventurous girl who attends the magic school with Raffine and the rest of the gang. She wears a large, red hat shaped like a Puyo and is the first to set out on the quest to find Accord's cane. She doesn't mind insults too much, and acts ignorant when Raffine insults her. Her name is French for friendship.
- Oshare Bones (おしゃれコウベ Oshare Kōbe , lit. Sharply-dressed Skull)
- Oshare Bones is a skeleton who follows the steps somewhat to Skele-T. He often thinks highly of himself, and tends to put down others who aren't as stylish as him in his opinion.
- Klug (クルーク Kurūku )
- A purple-clad boy in Amitie's and Raffine's class, who is rumored to have a demon possessing him (the demon is actually possessing his book). His attack titles are based on astrological/Latin-based words. Klug is the German word for "clever".
- Dongurigaeru (どんぐりガエル Dongurigaeru , lit. Acorn Frog)
- Dongurigaeru is a frog that rolls around in an acorn top. The only thing he ever says is "ribit" (kero in Japanese).
- Rider (リデル Rideru )
- Rider is generally shy girl that tends to stutter often. Her magic involves the power of thunder, summoning thunderbolts and lightning sparks (all named in Italian).
- Onion Pixy (おにおん Onion )
- Onion Pixy tends to just say gibberish, mostly relating to the word "onion" (in Japanese he merely says "On!").
- Ocean Prince (さかな王子 Sakana Ōji , lit. Fish Prince)
- A fish prince thinking he's a king. He's a bit conceited.
- Raffine (ラフィーナ Rafīna )
- Raffine is a snobby girl from a wealthy family who decides to beat Amitie to the punch and find the cane before she does, thus earning Accord's respect. She often exclaims French words; even her own name is French for refined.
- Yu (ユウちゃん Yū-chan )
- A happy-go-lucky ghost girl. Yu is derived from the former part of yūrei (幽霊), the Japanese word for 'ghost'. In the English dub, she has a habit of constantly shouting "Yes, indeedy!"
- Tarutaru (タルタル Tarutaru )
- Tarutaru is a large classmate of Amitie and Raffine; his actual age is unknown but has a suspected occupation as a law enforcement officer. He usually uses the Sumo attacks.
- Hohow Bird (ほほうどり Hohō-dori )
- A horribly conceited bird, who overuses the phrases "mmm-hmm" and "uh-huh" and other phrases related to those phrases.
- Ms. Accord (アコール先生 Akōru sensei )
- Accord is the teacher of Amitie's magic class alongside her cat puppet Popoi. She is also the diabolical mastermind behind the events transpiring within the PPF world involving her Flying Cane and Popoi. Most of her attacks are Italian words dealing with music, such as allegro (although her name comes from a French word, meaning "chord"). Whether she is supposedly evil or not, is unknown.
- Frankensteins (こづれフランケン Kozure Furanken , lit. Frankenstein With His Child)
- Frankendad, lacking the proper language skills, insists on grunting to get his message across. Frankenson, however, is the "mouth" for his dad and translates for his linguistic-disabled father, with his sentences often starting as "Daddy says" or "my daddy says".
- Arle Nadja (アルル・ナジャ Aruru Naja )
- The original heroine of the previous Puyo Pop classics makes a return from the Compile games as a side character who was "separated" from her own Puyo universe. In a nod to the gameplay of the original Puyo Pop, all of her drops are two-sets.
- Popoi (ポポイ Popoi )
- Popoi is the diabolical looking cat puppet that Accord carries around with her. He is also the boss character of the game. The relationship between the two is largely unknown, and it is widely believed that one is controlling the other. He prefers being called, "Prince of Darkness."
- Carbuncle (カーバンクル Kābankuru )
- Carbuncle is Arle's sidekick and the secondary boss character of the game. Carbuncle really does not speak but just shouts "Ta-da"; or "guu", as usual, in Japanese.
- Carbuncle exploit
- In versions of the game that support saving replays (i.e. Dreamcast and PC), the player is able to exploit the replay system to fight Carbuncle without meeting the original requirements, and unlock both Popoi and Carbuncle at the same time. Whilst playing Popoi in the HaraHara course, lose on purpose until 6 continues are lost. On the 7th loss, choose to save the replay. When the game resumes, the player will now be facing Carbuncle, and he will already be unlocked without a need to beat him. However, this does not unlock the Carbuncle cutscene in the gallery.
- Replay bug
- Puyo Pop Fever replay files store the replay information in an obscure manner. As a result of this, some replays will desynchronize when they are played back. The chance of this happening is far higher in online games due to lag, but can still happen in games played against the AI. The effect of the bug on replays is that one player's board will lock up part way through, while nuisance sent by either player in the original playthrough will continue to queue up (though is not displayed correctly). The replay continues until the other player finally dies (from the nuisance that will queue up eventually), and the first player's board unfreezes at that moment.
- Fever time bug
- In online games, if the game lags while any players are in Fever mode, their time counters will continue decreasing during the lag. This has been dubbed the worst bug affecting online play in this game. It was fixed in Puyo Puyo! 15th Anniversary.
Sega Superstars series
In Sega Superstars, there is a game based on Puyo Pop Fever, though the gameplay differs from the original game. The player must position his/her body in a certain position to get the Puyos into a pot of the same color. Bombs will also fall, and if they get into a pot, points are lost.
In Sega Superstars Tennis, a minigame based on Puyo Pop Fever is playable. Players have to clear Puyos by hitting the ball at them. If the ball hits a Puyo touching another Puyo of the same color, all of them disappear and extra points are awarded. Occasionally, some Puyos become garbage Puyos that don't disappear when the ball hits them, but they can be cleared if one of the colored Puyos attached to them are hit. This minigame is played on the stage based on Nights.
- Official Japanese Website
- Official U.S. Website - Nintendo DS Version
- Official Japanese Tournament Information and Videos
- CubeIGN Review Article