Mysteries and Errors?
Herewith a collection of mysteries, bugs, glitches and all sorts of odds and ends about the game that make it a fascinating piece of software by all accounts!
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You can notice that in some levels… in many cases, levels in World 2… the enemies (usually floating enemies, like ghosts) will actually float into walls and get stuck, leaving Superfrog free to just walk past. This is particularly prominent in the cracked version of the PC port. Tight tunnels are generally bugbears for this, as there’s not a lot of space for sprites to manoeuvre, except for into background tiles... which they then can’t get out of!
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On the Amiga version, the Frog Wings will actually allow you to fly for a (short) time upon pressing the action/fire button. On the PC version, you need to press the action/fire button (CTRL) at exactly the right rhythm in order to fly (usually gamepad users with autofire find this a lot easier!). Without doing so, Superfrog can only manage an extended jump. This can be a pain, especially considering the huge expanse of spikes in World 6-4. I myself initially played Superfrog using a joystick, so I never managed to finish the PC version as, at the most, I managed two flaps with every jump!
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Thanks to Michael Walsh for this one:
When playing I jumped across a pit of spikes and just caught the restore point before falling to my death. I was then restored, but not where the point was, I was slightly to the right. This was where I was upon collection, so I thought, “damn, I'm going to fall again to my death.” To my surprise this never happened, rather I fell through the spikes, through the floor and started a little lower.
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Programming Bug… Run!
My first encounter with being mystified with an aspect of Superfrog was a small programming “bug”. It was very rare, and seized up the game, turning it into an orange screen with black bars all over the place.
The most prominent example of this happened in Level 4-4. I worked my way through the level as normal until collecting the fourth Restart Pill (situated underneath a section of withdrawing platforms). Continuing up the platforms, I collected all the Coins and Fruit, and ducked the Ghost as you go onwards.
Then I got killed. The game put me back to the position of the Restart Pill, and this (usually, not always) activated the bug, seizing up the game. I have yet to encounter this bug more than twice or three times, but I doubt it’s an error unique to my copy of the game!
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A Nicer Bug
Not all bad news, though: here’s a bug Leo discovered which allows you to collect all the coins you want! (This is probably unique to the PC Version, however, as Troels Jacobsen reports that it doesn’t work for him on the Amiga.)
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Slipping and Sliding…
Here is another situation which will get you stuck. On the Ice World (World 5), there are small "dips" in the landscape, which you can slide in and out of. It's pretty amazing, sure, but what if you don't have control of your body? Once I ran into an enemy and, still in the hit loss sequence, slid down a slope and into a dip, in and out of the dip, in and out, in and out… I do not doubt it would have lasted until my Lucozade had run out.
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Thanks to Alessio for this one:
“In the “witch’s castle” (world 2) level 4 there is an area. If you jump above this area, you can't touch the roof. Bug discovered by me!”
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God's on your Side
This tip you can actually work to your advantage. Invisibility Pills are everywhere in the last few worlds. They will SAVE YOUR LIFE.
For an example, go back to Level 4-4. Not long after the situation described above, with the programming bug, there is a platform contraption. It has spikes on it, and just underneath it is an Invisibility Pill. Leap over the spikes just before the platform and into the spikes on the platform. Just in the middle of the dying sequence, Superfrog will collect the Pill and turn invincible, causing you not to lose a life after all! This can be very handy, especially in the instance above where contact with the spikes could cause you to face the wrath of the programming bug!
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Out of the Page
While researching… uh, okay, playing Superfrog one day, I stumbled across a secret passage in Level 5-4 which led me to something... strange. I walked along the passage, and suddenly I found the ice-caves ripped away, as if I had run off the piece of paper. I was also blocked by a large pencil, which prevented me from going any further. Well... I never thought that I was going to get out of the game!
(Thanks to Leo for screenshot)
Michael Walsh says: “I think the pencil AND the white paper beyond it are both walls, I have no proof but it makes sense. I also think the secret area is just a wall, but I was not able to get there using any of my methods.”
Additionally: clocks. And a can of Lucozade. I wonder about those and I’ve thought of two possible solutions:
a) They’re abandoned items which were meant to be in the game and then cut
b) They’re not real items and Team17 put them there as a teaser
If solution a) is the case, then I wonder what they would actually do. My guess is that clocks would either stop the timer temporarily, or stop all the enemies on the play screen. The can of Lucozade might restore all of SF’s hits, or give him some more time (half as much as a usual bottle would). However, as the most likely possibility is solution b), let’s not worry about that…
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You can notice that there are loads of items in the bottom left corner of the screenshot. However, 5-4 is not the only level to have tantalising items. Level 6-4 has items placed underneath the scenery very near the end. Several different people have come up with several different solutions to this…
Penny Wyatt claims that they're not actually there (in the Amiga version) - they're just painted onto the backdrop; Troels Jacobsen states the same, and says that all the spikes there are genuine. However:
Leo claims the reverse; certain spikes won’t harm SF, and you can also get him to the area using cheat mode (hold down the right mouse button) and collect everything except the extra lives (which are painted).
"bias" has reported that on the PC version, you can fly down (as indicated) and collect all the items (except the extra lives). You will need to die to get back. Kas also sent me a screenshot of it, taken from the PC version.
Apparently it seems that this trick is true. However, I myself have tested this – both versions – and I always die when falling on said spikes. Maybe it just doesn't work for me, or the game doesn't like me. Or I’m not very good at Superfrog. Hmmm.
Michael Walsh sent in this cheat for getting to the area if, like me, you have problems doing so:
· To do this, first download Cheat Engine 5.2
· Collect the wings, and get to the general area (I used the platform that if you drop from causes you to land near the opening).
· Then run Cheat Engine.
· Click top left icon -> Window list -> Select the Superfrog window -> Attach to process.
· Then click enable speed hack. And lower the speed to 0.1.
· Finally drop from the edge, hold left, and when you get to the passage hit CTRL. You will fly under the gap a little, then you can release CTRL and collect the goodies.
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Here’s a neat little trick… some things in Superfrog are ‘coin loops’ (you know what I mean, hit them from below and they throw out a coin), like some of the pictures in World 2, and the tops of doors in World 4 – and so on and so on – well, you don’t need to jump into them to get the coins – you can hurl Spud right at them, and that’ll do the trick just fine!
Incidentally, this only works on the Amiga and CD32 versions (and in the demos). In the PC version, Spud will bounce off the loops, and you’ll need to get SF to touch them if you want to get the coins.
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Michael Walsh says that on the PC version, after you finish the last level and face the Witch, if you don't have Spud you need to die to get him!
Leo has pointed out that this is a difference between the Amiga and PC versions: you only start the fight with Spud if you’ve finished 6-4 with Spud in your possession. If you don’t have Spud (and considering the spikes in 6-4 you probably won’t), you will need to die to collect him. Thankfully, however, the level gives you Spud automatically when you die, so you can actually kill the Witch.
On the Amiga version, you start the level with Spud whether or not you had him in 6-4.
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No Frogs Allowed
Michael also found an area SF is able to stand on, to the extreme left of the last level, using his Cheat Engine. This is actually the edge of the play field; Team17 didn’t finish the artwork directly below this screenshot (see the map of the level for details), but SF can still stand on this platform.
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Just because I’m a perfectionist (and an English teacher, in fact)…
· World 2 Loading Screen: “The witches castle…” – should read “witch’s castle”.
· World 4 Ending Screen: “Whacky” should read “wacky”. Also, “froggie”. Strictly speaking, as an adjective this should read “froggy”. Yes, yes, I know I’m nitpicking!
· World 5 Loading Screen: “Icey”? What the hell is that? It should be “icy”. People have been hanged for less!
· World 6 Loading Screen: “Witches” again. It’s “witch’s”, with a possessive apostrophe. There isn’t more than one witch.
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Early Builds Catch the Worm!
I was playing the Amiga Demo (the one available on the downloads page) – don’t ask me why, but I was. I collected Spud, and hit fire. Nothing. So I tried again. I’ve got Spud, I hit fire. Nothing happened, again. No Spud. I assumed he wasn’t in the demo.
I soldiered on, and collected the wings. Jumped, hit fire. Ah ha. Superfrog started flapping. I hammered fire really fast and he stayed in the air. I hammered it faster and he actually ascended. Very good. So I decided to try and fly around the level without touching the floor.
Unfortunately, I flew into a Ghost. Superfrog stopped. I mean stopped. He paused in the middle of the hit loss sequence. And just hung in the air. The arrow keys wouldn’t work. It was like he was in a state of suspended animation. In desperation, I hit fire.
Spud came out.
Leo has reported that in the demo, you need to hold down fire and then press the direction in which you want Spud to shoot.
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Spring Is Here
What's this all about?
“I went and eventually got in,” says Michael Walsh, “seems you can’t get out (well without certain location cheats).”
“Then there’s some springs higher up that I couldn't for the life of me figure how to get to. Again a little cheating revealed they are impossible to get to as well, in fact (as I guessed from the screen size). Once you are in there, you can not move from one spring to the next.”
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The game can be kind to you sometimes, in the case of disappearing enemy sprites, or deadly traps that simply don’t work!
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CD³² Demo Version Glitch
Thanks to S-2K of Dream17 for pointing this out:
A demo version of Superfrog was included with some CD³² titles, namely Ultimate Body Blows & Project X and some release versions of Arcade Pool, which included the Circus World of the game in its entirety. However, a glitch with the Demo allows you to play the Forest World. Simply go to the Options screen and enter anything as a Password. This prompts the game to start from the Forest World - as it would on the Full Version.
Once you complete World 1, the game attempts to load World 2 but fails, as the Demo doesn't include it. So you end up stuck in a limbo world constructed from glitched-out Forest World sprites, complete with enemies in random positions.
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If you are in a tunnel or on a platform or something which is above ground level, you can run off the side and hammer the action button (as you would to fly) without jumping. Superfrog will then float off the side of the platform, but you won’t see the flapping wings animation; he will appear as if he is standing in mid-air. Similarly, some random objects in the game will produce an effect which makes it look as if SF is standing in mid-air (thanks to Leo for the castle screenshots).
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Spud the Spy
If you fire Spud at a secret passage, before it’s been opened, he’ll travel through the landscape. This is quite handy for revealing secret passages before going for them!
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B is for Balloon!
The balloon platform was featured in ‘The One’ demo. Jump on the weight, and the balloon will carry SF upwards. Alas, it didn’t appear in the final cut of Superfrog, although a similar idea’s present in Super Princess Peach!
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Check this one out – it’s from a secret tunnel in the Circus World. There’s no way for the fish to touch SF (they can’t jump that high), so they are – in fact – harmless! (At least they are in the PC Version; on the Amiga, according to Troels Jacobsen, they can and will attack you!)
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Thanks, once again, to Leo for sending me screenshots of another irritancy. These are from the end sequence. In the first instance, SF’s cape is the wrong colour. In the second, the screen has had its top and bottom cut off!
Also from the ending, this is the code you get after the last level, which does absolutely nothing.