Subject: Doki Doki Panic FAQ v1.0
From: kensu@madison.tdsnet.com (Chris Schumacher)
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999 21:02:40 GMT
Reply-To: kensu@madison.tdsnet.com
Newsgroups: rec.games.video.nintendo

There have been several inquires about this over the years, one would think they
would go away with the advent of Famicom emulators, but the most popular ones
don't emulate the Disk System, soooo.... Any corrections or additions will be
most welcome.

                                                                      !
DOKI DOKI PANIC
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: What does the name mean?

A: Yumekojo Doki Doki Panic translates literally as "Dream-Castle 
Throbbing Panic", some translate Doki Doki as "Crazy Crazy".

Q: What's the story?

A: Ah..uh...some kids get sucked into a book, and...uh, their family
   goes in to get them. 

Q: What's with the monkey/mouse thing that paces during the intro?

A: Damned if I know.

Q: Why was this released in lieu of SMB2j in the US?

A: The official line is that SMB2j was too hard for the American 
audience. This is suggesting, of course, that it was not too hard for
the Japanese audience. Let's face it folks, SMB2j was too hard for
ANYONE. I tend to think because of the difficulty level and lack of
anything that was really NEW in SMB2j, Nintendo of America had a
throbbing panic on their hands. SMB2j was as much a sequel to SMB
as Ms. Pac-Man was to Pac-Man. If they released it, they could have
alienated millions of their fans. Chances are that YKDDP never would
have been released in the states, so NOA saw an opportunity and took
it. To be bluntly honest, I'm glad they did. YKDDP is a better game
than SMB2j by a longshot.

Q: I thought the game that SMB2a was hacked from was called "Dream
 Factory".

A: If you made an alteration of a game called "Throbbing Panic" would
YOU give out the real name in publicity material?

Q: Where can I get it?

A: Since you'd need to get a Famicom Disk System, a Famicom, and
manage to find a secondhand copy of the disk, it would probably be for
the best to use an emulator. I suggest Famtasia for the emulator. Do
a search for Doki Doki Panic through Hotbot or any other good search
engine and you'll be able to find the rom. I downloaded the rom quite
some time ago, and since emulation sites have a life-expectancty
little longer than the amount of time it takes bread to mold, my
information would be fairly useless, hence no sites are mentioned in
this FAQ.

Q: Isn't that illegal?

A: I wonder. You see, the thing is that having roms is not illegal IF
you own the program that they are backing up. Since most of the code
of YKDDP is contained in the SMB2a cartridge I own, is it really
illegal for me to have it? However, the SMB2a title screen does not
contain a copyright notice for YKDDP. If it did, I don't think this
would be a problem. When in court, make certain to recount this
argument. Besides, YKDDP may already be out of copyright.

Q: Argh! The %^&*ing title-screen keeps looping! What do I do?

A: The rom is rather anal about these things. First of all, you need
to set Disk 1 Side A to even get it to load. When you reach the point
where it says "Set Side B", select "Eject" from the menu, and THEN
choose "Disk 1 Side B". It won't bother looking for Side B until it
detects the ejection. Annoying, huh?

Q: Were there ever any sequels?

A: I once read about a game with used a similar engine (right down to
selection screens that were carbon-copies of the ones in SMB2a) but
I don't remember the name of this game or whether or not it was a
direct sequel.

Q: Fuji-TV is listed as one of copyrights on the title screen. Was
this an anime series?

A: I don't know about this, does anyone reading know?

LIST OF DIFFERENCES

- Obviously the characters were different. See Character Stats for
  more information.

- Character system worked differently. Whichever character you chose
  had to go through the game unaided by other characters. There is
  a "chapter map" which constitutes the other side of the "book" that
  is the level information screen we see in SMB2a. 

- Many graphical and sound differences, which I will now go into.
  General alterations represent ones made by NOA to make it an SMB
  game. Technical alterations represnt modifications made to game
  to improve the system. With the extra added space of the cart the
  NOA programmers couldn't help but make a FEW changes.

  (General)
  - No selection screen as we know it. There was simply a chapter
    map status page which played to a choppy rendition of the music
    we now know.
  - Level screens were a page of a book, the actual number of the
    level (i.e. 1-1 - Page 1, 2-1 - Page 4, et cetera) adorned the
    lower right hand corner of the book. Character selection screen
    was the other "page" of the book. Interesting to note that the
    book went from left to right, instead of the Japanese standard of
    right to left. Interesting also is the book is lying on its front
    [hence the back is showing] during the ending credits, indicating
    that it was read from right to left, which it wasn't.
  - All enemies, not just bosses, screamed when hurt/killed.
  - Subspace potion were replaced by an arabian oil lamp (think 
    Aladdian). The music in subspace was not a slow rendition of the
    SMB theme but a short Arabian tune played at normal speed.
  - When you collect the Star to become invincible another tune played.
    The star WAS, however, a reference to SMB.
  - Power Mushrooms didn't exist. In their place are heart containers.
  - 1-Up mushrooms didn't exist. Head icons of your current character
    represent the extra lives.
  - Shells were not used to mow down enemies. A strange looking
    vegetable did the same job. Personally, I think they should've 
    called a spade a spade and made it a shell.
  - In order to win the game you had to free the Subcons with all four
    characters. Hence the game takes four times as long as SMB2a!
  - In place of mushroom blocks were little mini jars with faces
    painted on them. They look like something you'd see in a hack,
    too.
  - The sound effect when a bomb explodes was spelled as "BOM" in the
    game, not "BOMB" as in SMB2a.

  (Technical)

  - The main characters had, I've noticed, fewer frames of movement.
  - Many of the sound effects and music have been smoothed out in 
    SMB2a. Most noticable are the sounds that Tryclyde and Wart make
    when they vomit their projectiles. The music when you fight Wart
    is also a weaker version of the SMB2a theme.
  - Some large vegetables were merely sketches of what they looked like
    in SMB2a.
  - Some building blocks (especially the floor of Wart's lair) were
    drawn less spectaculary.
  - The key guardians (known as Phantos) were more crudely drawn.
    Also, they did not start to chase you until you took the key from
    their room, picking it up did NOT set them off. I tend to think
    that this was a technical limitation rather than an interesting
    cultural detail of the Phantos.
  - The masks at the end of each level were drawn differently. They
    appeared to be a simple jade mask and looked nothing like a hawk at
    all.
  - In place of the slot machine was a low-tech, low-resolution version.
    Interestingly enough, the vegetables changed to reflect what 
    chapter you were in.
  - The "POW" on the POW blocks didn't move.
  - You couldn't pause within tubes.
  - There is no red pulse of energy within the crystal ball you use to
    open the jade mask at the end of levels.

Characters Stats:
Note: In scales 1 is best, 4 is worst.


IMAJIN
Appearence: Short, thin, turban wearer.
Running Speed: 2
Jumping Power: 3
Lifting Power: 2
Encumberedness Factor: 2
SMB2a Equivalent: Mario
Evaluation: Imajin is the most well-rounded character of the game,
hence you will find his conquest of the game the easiest.

LINA
Appearence: Female, wears tiara, pink hair and pink dress.
Running Power: 4
Jumping Power: 2 + Float
Lifting Power: 4
Encumberance Factor: 4
Smb2a Equivalent: Princess
Evaluation: Lina's abilty to float is extremely useful because it
allows her to make jumps that no one is capable of off. She can also
jump the second highest in the game, and her lack of lifting and
running abilities are easily compensated for by her jumping abilities.

MAMA
Appearence: Female, purple robes.
Running Power: 1
Jumping Power: 1
Lifting Power: 3
Encumberance Factor: 4
Smb2a Equivalent: Luigi
Evaluation: Aside from being the fastest runner and highest jumper,
Mama is also extremely well read. When playing with her you can skip
the first chapter right off the bat. Mama tends to be people's 
favorite character.

PAPA
Appearence: Plump turban-wearer.
Running Power: 3
Jumping Power: 4
Lifting Power: 1
Encumberance Factor: 1
Smb2a Equivalent: Toad
Evaluation: Papa is not encumbered by holding an item, hence he is
able to jump and run at normal speed with items. Like Lina, this
enables him to go to places and do things which no other character
can do. Although his lack of running speed and minor jumping abilities
will get him into trouble, his quick pick-up abilties will net him
a lot of extra lives (via the slot-machine) and allow him an edge when
fighting enemies.

THAT'S ALL---

For now. I would appreciate it if someone could get me a scan of the
original instruction booklet, or even a translation of the text would
be fine, it would help fill in some of the gaps in this FAQ.
Also, any information on the story (why was Fuji TV involved?) and
and about that possible sequel would be appreciated.
If Famtasia ever develops a screen-shot option I'll make an HTML
version of this, but I don't think that likely.