Dream Factory: Doki Doki Panic

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Doki doki cover.jpg
Dream Factory: Doki Doki Panic
DeveloperNintendo R&D4
PublisherFuji TV
SystemsFamily Computer Disk System
ReleasedJuly 10, 1987
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Dream Factory: Doki Doki Panic (夢工場 ドキドキパニック, Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic) is a platforming game that was created by Nintendo R&D4, in cooperation with Fuji TV, for the "Dream Factory '87" (夢工場'87, "Yume Kōjō '87") event.

"Doki doki" is a Japanese onomatopoeia for a beating heart.



Inside of a book resides the land of Muu, where the weather is tied to dreams, and a weather machine makes sure that everyone has good dreams.

One day, an evil toad named Mamu corrupted the dream machine and made it so that it produced nightmares. However, Mamu's weakness to vegetables was discovered, and he was defeated.

One day, twins named Poki and Piki discover the book and fight over who gets it. They accidentally tear out the last page and free Mamu. He reaches out from the book, and pull them inside.

It's now up to the twin's Mama and Papa, as well as their brother Imajin and his girlfriend Lina to enter the book to rescue Poki and Piki.

They need to complete each chapter, and finally complete the final chapter and defeat Mamu once again, to restore peace to Muu and to get the twins back.


In 1987, Fuji Television created a special event titled Dream Factory '87 (夢工場'87, Yume Kōjō '87). Fujisankei Communications Group, the company that owns Fuji Television, previously worked with Nintendo in 1986 to create All Night Nippon Super Mario Bros., a version of Super Mario Bros. that contained celebrities, logos, and other objects related to the All Night Nippon radio program. Fuji Television commissioned Nintendo to create a game based on characters from their Dream Factory '87 event.

Kensuke Tanabe and the team at Nintendo R&D4 already had a Mario platforming prototype. The prototype originally had vertical scrolling gameplay and emphasized throwing blocks. Shigeru Miyamoto suggested adding horizontal scrolling gameplay as well. When the prototype was expanded into a full game it contained Mario elements, such as the POW block from Mario Bros. and the Starman from Super Mario Bros.

However, Doki Doki Panic contained characters from Dream Factory '87. The story revolves around a storybook. Twins Poki and Piki were fighting over the last page of the book, and the evil Mamu pulled them into the book. Their family has to venture into the storybook themselves to save them. The brother, Imajin, was average in all areas. Mama could jump high and float for a bit. Lina, Imajin's girlfriend, could hover, but she lacked speed and strength. Papa was the strongest and fastest, but he couldn't jump very high.

Conversion to Super Mario Bros. 2

Nintendo decided not to bring the game that was released as Super Mario Bros. 2 in Japan to North America. They felt that it was too similar to Super Mario Bros. and would be too hard for North American gamers. Instead, Nintendo localized Doki Doki Panic so that it would be a Super Mario game. This game was released in 1988 in North America, Europe, and Australia as Super Mario Bros. 2. It was localized in Japan as Super Mario USA in 1992. Then, when the original Super Mario Bros. 2 was released outside of Japan in 1993, it was titled The Lost Levels to differentiate it from the game they received as Super Mario Bros. 2.

Differences between Doki Doki Panic and Super Mario Bros. 2

  • The storybook aspect was removed, and the land wherein the game takes place was now named Subcon rather than Muu.
  • The evil villain was now named Wart rather than Mamu.
  • Imajin became Mario, Mama became Luigi, Lina became Princess Toadstool, and Papa became Toad.
  • It is now possible to press the B button to run.
  • You can pick a character to use at the beginning of every level.
  • The level introduction screen no longer shows the number of lives remaining, unless the player loses a life and has to try the level again.
  • The leaves that contain vegetables that can be pulled out of the ground are orange instead of black.
  • Magic lamps are now magic potions, hearts are now mushrooms, the head with a big face is now a turtle shell.
  • The mask gate has been changed to a hawk.
  • Masks are now mushroom blocks.
  • The white Mouser boss in 5-3 has been changed to a rock-throwing crab named Clawgrip.

Other versions of the game

Dream Factory: Doki Doki Panic has never been released on any other platform other than the original 1987 Family Computer Disk System release.

However, since Nintendo owns all of the assets used in the conversion to Super Mario Bros. 2, this version has been brought to many different systems, both through traditional game ports and through emulation.