Developer: Zombie Studios
ESRB Rating: Everyone
Old-school gamers probably spent many dollars, one quarter at a time, trying to get an arcade frog across a busy street and treacherous river. Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition revives this concept while adding a few new features to the classic game. Can Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition find its way into the heart of the gamer, or will it get squashed on its way? Look out for the crocodiles: here’s the review.
“He Looks Like A Frog…So Do You”
As mentioned before, Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition combines the core mechanic of the original Frogger game with a few new gameplay modes. Some of the modes are multiplayer based, such as Tile Capture, Battle Royale, and Lady Frog Rescue. For those that don’t play well with others, the game also has single-player features, such as Paint, Twin Frogger, Frogger Freakout, Challenge, and the classic Frogger.
Starting with Tile Capture, up to 4 players are assigned a different color frog who leaves their color wherever they jump; the goal is to cover as much area as possible on the screen. If the frog is squashed or falls into the river, the colors are erased and the player must start again. Once a player makes it safely across the screen, their colors are locked for a set amount of time, and the score is locked in. This continues until all of the lily pads have been filled, and, naturally, the player with the highest score at the end of the game wins.
Battle Royale is basically a “last frog standing” mode, where players will use their quick thumbs and wits to out-survive and outlast their opponents. As is usually the case with this and other multiplayer modes, power-ups are available, such as slowing other players down when you eat a fly. When a player comes across a lady frog, that player becomes the 4th frog of the apocalypse, bringing instant death to other frogs in its path. Luckily, the effect is temporary, so the other players still have a chance.
Lady Frog Rescue involves all the players trying to gather up to three lady frogs and traverse the map to get to a lily pad. The more lady frogs the player gathers, the more points they gain; however, if they should die before securing a lily pad, they must start over.
The single-player modes include Frogger, Paint, and Twin Frogger; Frogger is the classic mode, while Paint and Twin Frogger add their own twists to gameplay. Paint makes the player fill in a specific pattern before time runs out. Twin Frogger is basically the classic style, except the player controls two frogs at the same time, separated by two spaces.
Frogger Freakout is essentially a medley of other modes; each level gives you a random mode. Challenge mode allows the player to choose from game-specific challenges, such as “Paint pattern (x) in (x) amount of seconds”. Each challenge ranges from easy to hard, and they also unlock hidden movies and other rewards.
I’m Buying The Frogger Machine…Now The Torch Will Burn Forever
For those that have played Pac-Man Championship Edition DX, the initial looks of Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition are very similar to its “neon lights” style. Also, players can adjust the skins of the maps to look like the classic Frogger of the past, which is a very nice touch. Along with those skins, there are a couple of unlockable map skins that pay homage to Konami classics Castlevania and Contra. While neither of these really change the game, the maps have some nice touches to replace roads, logs, and cars.
You can count on Slippery Pete, he’s the best…And the worst
While the controls to the game are responsive, and work well, it’s layout can be adjusted to two different modes. The classic control scheme works with the player having to press the direction buttons individually per movement. This is opposed to the regular control scheme for the game which allows the player to hold down the directional pad or analog stick to maintain movement.
I’m going to need a battery for this kind of job, can I at least steal a battery?
Among some of the things Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition has going against it is the fact that it may draw a lot of comparisons to Pac-Man Championship Edition DX. However, for a collection of Frogger based mini-games, there is still some fun to be had here. A major flaw in the game is the lack of online multiplayer. Multiplayer in the game is confined to the local controllers a gamer has for their console.
Another problem with the game itself is the lack of maps to make the levels feel different from one another. The game usually takes logs away to add difficulty as the player progresses, and in Paint Mode, it’s only traffic, rather than traffic and a river. There isn’t any depth, outside of map skins, that can add to the overall experience. The opportunity to add different styles of maps with certain areas blocked to add more strategy and/or difficulty would have helped.
Tile Capture and Lady Frog Rescue stand out as the better of the multiplayer modes; however, Battle Royale mode just isn’t much fun, possibly due to the more aggressive style of the gameplay, or the simple fact that it just doesn’t add much to the game itself, especially since the game is local multiplayer only.
As for the single player modes, Challenge Mode and Frogger Freakout kind of feel like the same mode. The problem is that since they both are almost the same thing, one feels unnecessary. Classic Frogger will give classic gamers a fun time, and the same can be said about Paint. Twin Frogger will challenge the player and test their accuracy (as well as their patience), but it’s a polarizing experience: players will either love it or hate it.
In summary, for $10, Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition isn’t a bad experience. Where some things could have been added to the game itself, for what the game does have, it does very well for most of the modes. This game suits the hardcore Frogger fans best, and teaches a new generation of gamers of the Frogger franchise. Gamers should download the trial, give it a test run, and see if the game fits their personal taste.
Final Verdict: Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition gets 6 eaten flies out of 10.
This review is based on a retail copy of the Playstation 3 version of Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition by Zombie Studios, distributed by Konami.