Codex Gamicus

Congo Bongo Tip Top (ティップタップ Tippu Tappu?) is an arcade game released by SEGA in 1983. Strong evidence from analysis of the game's ROM[1][2][3] claim that Ikegami Tsushinki also did development work on Congo Bongo. The game has come to be seen as Sega's answer to the highly successful Donkey Kong game that was released two years prior. The player takes the role of a red-nosed safari hunter who tries to catch an ape named "Bongo". The hunter seeks Bongo to exact revenge for an apparent practical joke in which Bongo set fire to the hunter's tent, giving him a literal "hotfoot". The game was a commercial failure when it was released.[4] but was popular enough to be ported to nearly every major platform of the day including Atari's consoles, MSX, Intellivision, ColecoVision, Commodore 64 and IBM PC. Most recently Congo Bongo received an enhanced remake and port on the PlayStation 2 as part of the compilation SEGA Ages 2500 Vol 23: Sega Memorial Collection. The game is also unlockable in Sega Genesis Collection for the PlayStation Portable and Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection (Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection in PAL regions) for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.


The gameplay is highly similar to other popular arcade games of the time, most notably Frogger and Donkey Kong, but is viewed in an isometric perspective, or oblique perspective in some versions. It is characteristic of early platform games, as the protagonist has no offensive abilities and depends on timing jumps and movement to avoid enemies, obstacles, and complete the level.


Like Donkey Kong, the levels are composed of a series of four single screens that loop in a higher difficulty when completed.

Screen 1: Primate Peak - This level most resembles Donkey Kong; the player must travel to the top of a hill while avoiding coconuts being thrown by a large gorilla. Also walking around the level are several small monkeys who attempt to grab the player. They can be shaken off by jumping in place, but if three of these monkeys attach to the player, the protagonist will be thrown off the cliff face.

Screen 2: Snake Lake - This level contains a grassland that is connected to a series of square platforms with thin pathways between. The player must avoid scorpions on the grass, snakes on the platform, and time movement with hippos in order to complete the level.

Screen 3: Rhino Ridge - This level takes place in a wide-open Savannah environment where the player needs to navigate around rhinos charging in different directions. Stepping in the puddles results in death, but the player can hide in the empty holes. The rhinos can also be jumped over.

Screen 4: Lazy Lagoon - This level closely resembles Frogger, as the player must cross a body of water by walking on and off various lily pads, logs, hippos, and large fish.









Congo Bongo has been ported to many video game consoles, including the ColecoVision and the Intellivision. The Atari 5200 port contains only two of the four arcade levels: "The Great River" and "Jungle Mountain", while the ColecoVision version is missing "Snake Lake". This game is also an unlockable in the PSP version of Sega Genesis Collection (Sega Mega Drive Collection in PAL regions). When the Atari 2600 port came out, it was a flop and was missing the second and third levels due to the 2600's hardware limitations. the Intellivision port is the only one to contain all 4 levels of the game.


  1. Ikegami Tsushinki
  2. ドンキーコング裁判についてちょこっと考えてみる Thinking a bit about Donkey Kong, accessed 2009-02-01
  3. It started from Pong (それは『ポン』から始まった : アーケードTVゲームの成り立ち sore wa pon kara hajimatta: ākēdo terebi gēmu no naritachi?), Masumi Akagi (赤木真澄 Akagi Masumi?), Amusement Tsūshinsha (アミューズメント通信社 Amyūzumento Tsūshinsha?), 2005, ISBN 4-9902512-0-2.
  4. According to "Video Games Go Crunch!" in TIME magazine October 17, 1983 issue, Congo Bongo was a commercial failure initially,

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