Frogger: Helmet Chaos
Remember Frogger? You know, that one retro arcade game that had you taking the reigns of a suicidal frog trying to cross a busy intersection? Well, not only has little ol' Frogger crossed the other side of the street, but he's crossed over into the realm of 3D in Frogger: Helmet Chaos, and the results are better than you might think.
There have been numerous attempts to try and bring classic arcade franchises like Frogger back to life by imbuing them with the modern touches of the 3D world. However, it's more important that we note that a vast majority of those attempts have failed horribly. Remarkably, Frogger: Helmet Chaos does not fail in this attempt. It blends the simple hop and skip action of the original Frogger with the complexities of modern videogames. The end result is a simple but completely enjoyable game.
See, at heart, Frogger: Helmet Chaos is still a platformer. Through an isometric view, you hop and skip around levels, avoiding obstacles and the like. The interesting aspect of the game however, is the way Frogger controls around the map. Press the control pad in a particular direction, and Frogger hops one space that way, similar in how the original Frogger played. This simple mechanic works really well, largely ensuring that old school arcade fanatics who were weaned on the original Frogger won't feel out of place with Helmet Chaos. In addition, it's still accessible enough to the current generation of gamers. A smart touch.
The levels themselves are nicely constructed, offering a nice dose of variety and challenge throughout the course of the game. Initially, the game may seem to be overly simple, but the game does offer a definite challenge, testing not only your reflexes but your brain as well. There are also a decent amount of puzzles, though none of them are inherently ingenious, instead relying on the old 'move the block here'? gameplay mechanic.
They won't astound, but the visuals complement the friendly nature of the game perfectly. There's a decent polygon count going on and the textures, likewise, are sharp for the PSP.
That old adage has already established that dogs can't be taught new tricks, but apparently this doesn't apply to frogs. Frogger: Helmet Chaos is a surprisingly enjoyable title that blends the sensibilities of old school arcade games with the complexities of modern gaming, making for a title that'll likely please just about anyone, gamer or not.