Frogger: Hyper Arcade Edition review for XBLA, PSN, WiiWare

Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
Also On: PSN, WiiWare
Publisher: Konami
Developer: Zombie Studios
Medium: Digital Download
Players: 1 – 4
Online: No

Frogger has been around for over 30 years and has seen many variations in that time. No matter what world they attempt, game play gimmicks, or action adventure failures, no version of Frogger stands the test of time and is in the hearts of so many as the original. Hell they even made a Seinfeld episode based on it. When Konami announced they would be developing a ?Hyper Arcade Edition? based on the original I was just wondering in what way they could possibly mess up my child hood and arcade loving memories this time. I?m happy to say that Konami and Zombie Studios finally learned their lesson and has stuck to their roots of what made this game so loved, and while they may have tinkered with the game a bit to add variety and additional modes, the basic concept of getting from point A to B without dying still exists.

For those who live under a rock or are too young to fondly remember Frogger the premise was simple: take the joke ?why did the chicken cross the road? and replace the chicken with a frog, and change the punch line to ?to get to a lily pad on the other side of the screen?. Of course getting from point A to point B isn?t as simple as you expect since you have obstacles like moving cars, turtle shells that sink under water, snakes on logs, and even alligators obtruding your path to freedom.

In Frogger: Hyper Arcade Edition, not only did they keep the classic game of Frogger intact, but have added several variations that use the same game play and mechanics, but blend them up into other great and frantic modes that will appease Frogger fans without disappointing them.

In classic Frogger mode you have your choice of playing the game just like the old school classic, but using a variety of different visual patterns. You have your choices of original 8 bit, Next Gen graphics, Hyper graphics that look like Tron, DDR and Karaoke Revolution that uses the symbols from those classic game as the obstacles, Castlevania that uses those classic monsters and symbols as obstacles, and even Contra which uses sprites and characters from that classic series and can only be unlocked using the Konami code.

Other modes include Tile capture where you capture and hold tiles for points, a Battle Royale mode in which you place 1-4 players against each other to squish the other frogs and become king frog, Lady Frog Rescue where you simply rescue lady frogs for points, Paint Mode in which you have certain tiles that are lit up and others that are blacked out and you can only jump on those lit tiles to paint them all one color to succeed, Twin Frogger has you controlling two frogs simultaneously, a Challenge mode that puts your Frogger skills to the test, and Frogger Freak Out that takes all the aforementioned modes and randomizes them into one great mash up survival mode.

The great thing is no matter how mixed up the modes may seem, the game play elements that made the original such a hit are still intact, just changed up to provide some extra excitement. While this version isn?t as white-knuckled as Pac-Man Championship Edition, you can rest assured that the new and unique challenges the added modes present will still challenge the brain and reflexes of even the most ferocious Frogger champion.

Overall, this game of Frogger isn?t going to win over anyone who isn?t a fan or maybe too young to really ?get it?, but for old fogies like myself, this game is a new and ?ribbeting? challenge that will more than satisfy fans of the series without tainting their memories in the process.