If you are one of those people who goes into arcades in search of new games to play, you will be familiar with that little frog that you have to try to get from one side of the screen to the other where it is safe. If not, let me explain.
Croaker is an adaptation of the Frogger game in which you are presented with a small green frog at the bottom of the television screen, and your aim is to get this poor little thing up to the top without it getting run over by a lot of cars.
As the game proceeds and you get all the frogs home a harder screen appears, with more cars going faster and this time crocodiles and diving turtles. As for what comes next I just don't know, I have not managed to get that far yet.
To load Croaker simply type *RUN; there were no problems in loading. Once loaded the game starts by pressing space and you are then greeted by the sound of a chainsaw. (I think it's meant to be a frog croaking!) Colour is good and so are the graphics on screen. In the lower left corner is the time in which you must get all your frogs to safety and it's running out. In the lower right corner are your remaining frogs.
The control keys are A for forwards, Z for backwards, N for left and M for right.
I like the little frog and you feel so sorry for it; mind you the contrast is not very good when you land on certain things, for instance the turtles, so if you don't keep an eye on it you can lose track of where it is.
If you manage to get home, the frog croaks and fills its pen looking happily at you. The hardest pen to fill is the leftmost one and can be tricky as the game gets faster.
A tune is played throughout the game, which is very good quality and gives you some idea of what the BBC is capable of. However, as the tune doesn't seem to change, after about an hour or so you begin to wish that the suppliers Micro Power had given you the option of switching the sound off. This would also have been a good idea as so many of these games can end up being played at night when other people have gone to bed.
A table of high scores is also included. At the top of the table is the name of the person who scored the highest at Micro Power, the top score so far is also displayed during the game.
One thing I would like to see introduced by a company producing this type of software for computers where joysticks are not required is a change in the keys being used. Instead of A, Z, N, M, why not S, X, W, S or K, L, O, P? They are just as easy too use and would cut down on the excess wear and tear on the keyboard.
As I said earlier, the colour and graphics are good and a lot of fine detail has gone in to the making up of the program. To me this has been the closest a program has come to the original and is good value for money.