Video Game: Gubble

Gubble finds himself in a bit of a screwy situation here.
Gubble is a Maze Game created by Actual Entertainment, originally released for the PC in 1997 and subsequently ported to the PlayStation and iPhone. Most of the game involves solving a series of real-time puzzles using tools, such as a hammer or screwdriver, which the main character, Gubble (an alien), uses in a humorous way to remove the implements of these tools, such as nails and screws, from the playing area.

The opening storyline to Gubble (only found in the instruction booklet) is very vague and is only used to make the game seem slightly more rational. Gubble has been abducted by a UFO (who mistook him for another Gubble, a workman), and is instructed to remove all the screws that have been hammered into some planet if he wants to get home. The majority of the game is spent on a fictional planet and many of the puzzles (known as "Zymbots") repeat themes of a certain world (the game is split into multiple worlds).

Unlike Pac-Man, Gubble has no way of defeating Mooks. His only means of defending himself from enemies is by flying over them via a jetpack embedded in the chair-like machine he rides in. However, many later enemies have ways to counter this.

A sequel was later released with much bigger levels. The sequel is so obscure Gamespot actually thought the game was cancelled.


Used Tropes:

  • Airborne Mook: UFO enemies and red balls can fly, and will damage gubble if he flies into them.
  • A Winner Is You: "Congratulations!! you are a Gubble expert and you had WAY too much free time"
  • Bonus Level: Two kinds-
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Completing the game with 100% Completion nets you a slightly different ending and a message: "Congratulations!! you are a Gubble expert and you had WAY too much free time"
  • Call a Rabbit a "Smeerp": The levels in this game are called "Zymbots".
  • Character Title
  • Cool Chair: Gubble rides one. In the sequel, he ditches it and walks around the place.
  • Corridor Cubbyhole Run: Usually done in areas with timed cannons. There's usually an alcove for Gubble to hide in.
  • Difficulty Spike: Both games have one around the second to third worlds. The enemy combinations get a lot more lethal and more deadly enemies are introduced.
  • Elmuh Fudd Syndwome: The "chair" robots are known as Wangry Wobots and Wangry Wobot Wannabees in the PC instruction manual.
  • Extra Eyes: One of the enemies is a blue caterpillar with five eyes.
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: Although Gubble can fly over most Mooks (effectively rendering him invulnerable to contact damage), some of them have developed methods to harm him while flying!
    • UFOs can fly and thus damage Gubble while flying.
    • Green spike enemies will jump up to pierce Gubble should he fly above them.
    • Wheel Robots/Row Bots are too tall to be flown over.
    • Pogo Toads/Froozes are blue enemies on springs that jump around. Gubble will have to go underneath them to avoid them.
    • A red set of floating, spinning balls ONLY damages Gubble if he is flying or on a tool.
  • Death Course: Some of the Special Zymbots are like this.
  • Flight: Gubble uses a jetpack in his chair machine to fly around.
  • Giant Mook: One enemy in the final few special stages is a large orange, evil looking paper bag. If Gubble comes into contact with this thing, it will keep ramming into Gubble till Gubble dies!
  • Guide Dang It: Many of the secret levels are so well-hidden that you'd probably need a guide to find them. Unfortunately, there is NO detailed guide of this game on the internet.
  • Humanoid Aliens: Gubble's race.
  • Interface Screw: Certain cannons in the sequel can shoot various coloured poisons at Gubble that temporary mess with his controls. Blue poison reverses his controls, red poison slows him down, yellow poisons make him unable to jump, and green poison shrinks him.
  • Land Mine Goes Click: One of the hazards that Gubble can encounter. Do NOT touch these, they hurt for a lot of damage.
  • Law of Chromatic Superiority: There are two "walker" robot Mooks (known as Chairs) in this game, red and blue. The red ones are faster, smarter and usually tend to chase Gubble around more often than the blue ones which usually just patrol one area.
    • In the PC instruction book, the red ones are called Wangry Wobots and the blue ones Wangry Wobot Wannabees.
  • Let's Mock the Monsters: Lampshaded with the first time you face Chet in the sequel. They're normally supposed to resemble a cardboard box with an angry face, but this one happens to have a picture of a real life boy's face on it. The game's hint tells you to "Stop laughing and start already!"
  • Man-Eating Plant: One of the obstacles is the "Alien-Eating Plant", a yellow flower that swallows, damages, then spits Gubble out onto a different area. They are known as Plants-O-Pain in the PC instruction manual.
  • Mecha-Mooks: The Gears (of war), red and blue "walkers" (Chairs), pincer drones (Drones), UFOs, Missile robots (Row Bots), Wheel Bots, etc...
  • Nintendo Hard: Around the fourth set of levels, the gameplay starts getting really difficult...
  • Odd Name Out: Most of the levels either end with a "hard A" syllable. Rennigar, Falzigar, Plumaxia, Tropiso, Melcosia, Rocobora, Saromesa, Nevisara, Carridessa, Walsamer.
  • 100% Completion: You need to complete EVERY Bonus Zymbot (and collect the 5-coin) AND Special Zymbot if you want to achieve this. Doing so just gives the player a slightly different ending as a Bragging Rights Reward.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: A number of the enemies are just plain strange. There are multi-eyed caterpillars, leaping spring things, golden coloured flatworms, a giant orange paper bag that murders you, etc.
    • The second game is no slouch either- behold the first Big Chet that you face. A paper bag with a boy's face that shoots cheese. Even the game tells you to "stop laughing and start already!"
  • Power-Up: Three Kinds: one gives Gubble back half his max Hit Points, one freezes all enemies on the screen and the third allows Gubble to move faster.
  • Save Point/Check Point: Very few and far-between. Unfortunately, the only way to restore all of Gubble's health was to use one of these. One of the reasons why this game is Nintendo Hard.
  • Spike Balls of Doom: The sequel features two variants as enemies. The blue/grey ones will accelerate towards Gubble in the four cardinal directions, while the yellow ones don't home in, but rush towards Gubble if he's on a path in line with them.
  • Spring Coil: Pogo Toads have one, which they use to jump around the area.
  • Time Stands Still: One of the powerups freezes all the enemies for a short period of time when collected.
  • Trap Is the Only Option: In the second game, there are levels where Gubble must deliberately get hit by a shrink poison cannon so that he can traverse an area with otherwise low ceiling.
  • When All You Have Is a Hammer: Taken LITERALLY in some stages, where your only tool is a hammer.