Congo Bongo

aka: Africa Nera, Jīn gāng sāndà, Tip Top
Moby ID: 3955
Atari 8-bit Specs

Description official descriptions

Congo Bongo is an arcade platform game similar in many ways to Donkey Kong, but with an isometric perspective. The player takes control of a safari hunter who is searching for an ape named Bongo, determined to punish him for setting the hunter's tent on fire. The game consists of four one-screen stages, each with an objective to jump on platforms and reach the top. Various animals will try to stop the protagonist: for example, in the first level a large gorilla throws coconuts at him. The hero has no offensive abilities and must jump or otherwise avoid enemy attacks. Stages may contain obstacles or hazardous spots that would kill off the main character.

Spellings

  • 金鋼三代 - Taiwanese spelling

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Credits (Commodore 64 version)

Additional programming (uncredited)

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 46% (based on 9 ratings)

Players

Average score: 2.6 out of 5 (based on 56 ratings with 1 reviews)

No bananas for you, monkey boy

The Good
Congo Bongo is an usual game. It is similar to Donkey Kong, where the game involves your character, an ape, and a few obstacles that come tumbling down at you. In the game, you play an explorer who gets revenge on the ape for burning his tent and making him scream. To do this, he must get to where the ape is standing. You must dodge the obstacles by moving the explorer left or right. The ape isn't going to make things any easier for the explorer to reach him, as he has to dodge coconuts that he throws down at him, and just to make sure that he remains safe, the ape has sent three monkeys to guard him, and if our explorer gets in their way, they will slow his progress down.

After the explorer gets to him, he runs away to Lake Lazy to sit down and warm himself in front of the fire, waiting for the explorer to cross the lake full of lilies, hippos, and fish by jumping on them. After the explorer survives the dangers of the lake, you could say that the ape will pay the price. When the explorer comes in contact with any dangers or fall down gaps or drown in water, then he dies and his spirit gets taken to heaven. These are the two levels that are in the game.

Congo Bongo was originally a coin-op game that was designed for 1-2 players. The game introduces something that was not present in other coin-ops for its time: the ability to hang on to ledges. This means that if you jump to a platform but just couldn't make it, the character will hang onto a ledge and pull himself up to the platform. The music has a very simple jungle theme to it that changes from level to level. The sound effects were pretty basic for its time.

The Bad
Unfortunately, C64 users have to miss out on two additional levels that most versions have. The third level is where the explorer have to get through a herd of rhinos who are charging at you, and the fourth level was a much harder version of the second. At the end of the second level, the explorer must light his torch and burn the ape's ass like in all other versions, but instead of this, the ape just holds his hand up as if he wants to play high-five.

The graphics in the C64 version are very primitive for a 1983 game. The explorer looks a bit blocky at all times, even when he goes to heaven, and most of the characters and obstacles, particularly the monkeys, look like that they came straight from the Sega SG-1000. There was one sound effect that I annoyed the hell out of me, which was the sound that the game makes when you jump.

The Bottom Line
You know, the original coin-op version of Congo Bongo had an interface that closely resembles that of Donkey Kong. If you like monkey-themed games and enjoyed playing Nintendo's game, then try having a go at Congo Bongo, but if you like more of a challenge, i suggest that you go and play the coin-op version.

Rating: ***

Commodore 64 · by Katakis | カタキス (43092) · 2004

Trivia

Cancelled releases

Although advertised, a Spectrum conversion was never complete; neither did an Amstrad CPC conversion which U.S. Gold advertised around the same time make it to the market.

Conversions

The PC Booter version appears to be the only version with all four arcade levels. Most ports had two or, if you were lucky, three levels.

Intellivision version

Although SEGA announced four games to be released on the Intellivision, this was the only title they did release for that platform.

Information also contributed by LepricahnsGold

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by jeff leyda.

TI-99/4A added by Corn Popper. Coleco Adam added by Hipolito Pichardo. SG-1000 added by Kabushi. Atari 8-bit, MSX added by Martin Smith. Arcade added by Pseudo_Intellectual. Apple II, VIC-20, Atari 2600, Commodore 64, Intellivision, ColecoVision, Atari 5200 added by Servo.

Additional contributors: Alaka, Martin Smith, LepricahnsGold, Trypticon, Andrew Fisher, Patrick Bregger, nicholas mccolm.

Game added May 1, 2001. Last modified February 4, 2024.