Snake is a Top-Down View Maze Game, with a twist; you not only navigate the maze, you are the maze. You play a snake, slithering around in a pit eating food. Every time you eat, you score some points, and you get longer. Eventually, you get so long that you have to navigate around yourself. The game ends when you crash into yourself or a wall.
Based on an arcade game from 1976 called Blockade. First appeared in its present form in the late 1970s on the TRS-80, Commodore PET, and Apple ][. Port Overdosed in the extreme, because both the program and the graphics are so simple. In 1997, it became the first Mobile Phone Game when it appeared on Nokia phones starting with the Nokia 6110 handset. Some versions, rather than being endless, reset the snake after eating enough food and advance to a new level, with each level after the first having pre-built walls.
Snake provides examples of:
- Border-Occupying Decorations: In III, there's a leafy border around the gameplay window.
- Collision Damage: One of the greatest hazards in the game is your own body, which grows larger with every piece of food you eat.
- Endless Game: The basic version of the game will eventually end should the player grow large enough to fill the playfield, or end up with the snake chasing its own tail without further progress. Instead, early versions of the game require the player to exit the arena after eating enough food, and enter a new map with a pre-built maze. Keeping the game properly endless requires adding additional hazards (e.g. bouncing plums) or making the snake go faster.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: If you crash into the tail "maze" you made by yourself, you die.
- Hyperactive Metabolism: Eating a food item makes the snake grow longer instantly.
- Maze Game: The player's tail inevitably becomes maze-like as a play session continues.
- Mythology Gag: Gameloft's 2017 version, Snake Xenzia allows the player to not just move in curves, but to move in four sides like most original versions.
- No Plot? No Problem!: There is no plot. Just eating while avoiding your body and the walls.
- Ouroboros: You die if you bump into your tail "maze" as if you bite your own tail.
- Segmented Serpent: Variations of the game give the snake segments, with an extra segment being added as it eats an item.
- Scoring Points: Each piece of food eaten is a point. Eat as much food as you can before you eat your own tail or you hit a wall.
- Top-Down View: The typical viewing position for the player is a bird's-eye view of the field.
- Vegetarian Carnivore: A lot of the variants of the game have the snake eat fruit, mushrooms etc. instead of other animals or meat baits (presumably to keep the snake sympathetic). In reality, snakes are exclusively carnivores.