Ribbit was Sega's long overdue sequel to the original smash hit of Frogger. The promotional materials even promised that "The "Ribbit" is so comical you'll find it impossible to stop playing!". Released in 1991, this was one of the few conversion games to ever require a medium resolution monitor (that was until the Virtua Fighter series started coming out with sequels). This game is highly detailed and shows the action from a top down viewpoint.

The gameplay to this title can basically be summed up with the phrase "2-player Frogger". Each player controls a frog that has to move around from place to place, eating insects and avoiding bad guys and large moving objects. It is pretty much the same concept as the original Frogger. They simply expanded it into a larger world and made it more complicated (and made the frogs a lot bigger). They also added bonus stages and a storyline that you get to read in between stages. At least one could read the storyline if one knew how to read Japanese. I myself have no grasp of that language, thus I couldn't tell you anything about the story at all. The controls remained the same as on the original Frogger. They consisted of a single 4-Way joystick for each player. There were no gameplay buttons at all, just the joystick.

This game could have been a hit. There were almost no games like this on the market at the time, but they made one fatal mistake. That mistake was making the game require a medium resolution monitor. In Japan all the new JAMMA cabinets had switching mode monitors on them that could run in either standard resolution or medium resolution. But in America operators either had to convert over the unlikely titles of Paperboy, Super Sprint, and Championship Sprint, or they would have had to have purchased a new monitor, adding a good $300 to the cost of converting a machine. The monitor issues alone would have mostly killed any chance of it going outside of Japan. But there are two more factors, 1991 saw two other major forces in the arcade industry, Street Fighter 2, and Sega's attempted release of their Hologram cabinet. Sega was trying to push their laserdisc based hologram cabinet off on operators, but all they were buying was Street Fighter 2. So this game never even had a chance.

This game is JAMMA compatible, and requires a cabinet with a horizontal medium resolution monitor. Operators could only buy this game as a kit (no dedicated cabinets were produced). As fas as I can tell not a single copy of this ever made it into any arcades outside of Japan.

You can play this game using the MAME emulator, although I personally prefer to either play the original, or one of the newer 3D versions of Frogger, as this one just doesn't seem to hold me. Although that might have something to do with the fact that it is one of the few games I have ever played in MAME that has a habit of crashing the emulator. This game does have one advantage over the original Frogger, it is absolutely huge in scope, having over fifty different distinct levels.

This game is almost completely impossible to locate in any format. I can find no record of any Ribbit JAMMA boards or kits ever being sold outside of Japan. So getting ahold of a copy of this is going to be fairly tough, and would certainly involve making lots and lots of inquiries to Asian PCB shops.

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Ribbit is the sound traditionally used in english to represent the noise a frog makes.

The use of the word 'ribbit' to refer to the sound that a frog makes came into popular use in the 1930. Before that it may well have been used regionally, but was not a common or well known, as most frogs do not actually make a ribbit sound, chirping, peeping, croaking, and quacking instead.

However, one particular frog does ribbit -- the Pacific Tree Frog. When the Talkies became all the rage, sound men went out to collect sounds for swamps, forests, streams, and rivers. The frog was appropriate for settings all across the world, and was a clear and nonthreatening sound of nature that could be easily inserted without interfering with dialog or plot... but useful though this sound was, the sound effects artists of Hollywood weren't willing to travel very far to get it. So it came to be that the Pacific Tree Frog came to speak for every frog in the world.

It may be interesting to note that the Pacific Tree Frog makes a number of sounds; the ribbit is one of the males' mating calls, along with a crek-ek call. A trilled encounter call is used to warn other males away, and a long cree-ee-ee-eek call is used throughout the year. The females are, as far as I can find, silent.

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