Classic Frogger Atari arcade game. Get the frog across the road without getting run over.

Arcade Games

History of: Frogger
The early 1980s was a big time for video games, with the various gaming companies competing tooth and nail to release the most popular game in the arcades. In this era companies were breaking away from the norm, and the trend seemed to be the designing of what can only be called “cute” video games. The example below is no exception.

Hot Dog Jumping Frog: The History of Frogger

Published in 1981 by Sega/Gremlin and developed by Konami, Frogger became a classic among the gaming public, with a truly original concept and theme. Frogger was originally going to be called “Highway Jumping Frog,” but after much deliberation, the bigwigs at Sega decided that this didn’t quite capture the fun nature that the game was trying to achieve.

The object of the game was quite simple. The gamer had to move their frogs (5 in total) from the bottom to the top of the screen in 60 seconds or less, while avoiding the hazards along the way. In the first half Frogger had to avoid a bi-directional flow of traffic, which included cars, buses and the faster moving race cars. In the second half of the game, the player had to try and negotiate a fast flowing river by hopping onto logs and the backs of turtles before jumping into the home base situated at the very top of the screen.

At various times throughout the game a lady frog would appear. Bonus point were earned if you could jump on the back of the lady frog, and guide her home. Other bonuses were flies that would randomly appear in the home bases themselves. So the objective would be to steer Frogger into the base were the fly was situated. As the game progressed other hazards would become ever more present, animals such as crocodiles, otters and snakes. Although Frogger could jump on their backs,(except the snake) the trick was to avoid their open mouths at all costs.

Conversions and Sequels

Frogger, although simple by design was thoroughly addictive to play, and the inevitable release on home consoles seemed to increase it’s popularity even further. These include;

Commodore 64
Atari 5200
Nintendo Game Boy
Microsoft Xbox 360

The success of the original lead to the release of numerous sequels including; Frogger 2: Threeedeep
Frogger 3D
Frogger 2: Swampy’s Revenge

There have also been many clones produced throughout the years including; Froggy, for the Spectrum, and Hopper, which was released for BBC Micro and Acorn Electron home computers.

The success of “cute” games such as Frogger go along way in proving that fancy graphics are not everything, and addictive game play is what turns games into true legends.