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Video Game / Trog

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Trog is a 1990 video game developed by Midway Games originally for the arcades and later ported to both the NES and DOS. Set in a time where cavemen lived alongside dinosaurs, up to four players can play one of four dinos: Rex, Spike, Bloop, and Gwen. The ports reduce you to just two of the dinos, Spike and Bloop.

Like its spiritual predecessor Pacman, your mission is to clear the screen. You must collect all the colored eggs you can while avoiding the "Trogs", vicious one-eyed cavemen that would love to eat dinosaur. (The name is derived from "troglodyte", an older word for caveman and the scientific name for chimpanzees.) Once you collect all the eggs, you have to make it to the exit, labelled "Home", in order to advance to the next screen. In a multiplayer game, the first player to make it off the screen gets bonus points and a brief victory animation.

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Unlike Pac-Man, your dinos are not completely helpless without a power-up.note  You can punch the Trogs at any time (it takes three hits to knock a Trog off the screen). As for power-up items, you can collect: horseshoes that give you temporary invulnerability; red flowers that raise your speed; ice cubes that freeze all on-screen Trogs and enable you to punch them off the screen with a single punch; pineapples, which turn the character into a full-grown T-Rex that can temporarily eat his enemies (like Pac-Man's Power pellets), and a chili pepper which gives you temporary fire breathing power. Mushrooms should be avoided as they will decrease your speed.

The Trogs aren't your only worry. Hazards can kill you such as wheels, fire, pits, and tar; however these hazards can also affect the Trogs. If you're not careful, you can also walk off the edge of the play area and die! Later levels contain teleporters and catapults, which you can use to get around the playing area...and the Trogs can use them too.

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This game contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Adapted Out: Rex and Gwen are absent from the NES version, while Spike and Gwen are absent from the DOS version.
  • All Cavemen Were Neanderthals: Averted; the Trogs are depicted as being stylized Cyclops creatures.
  • Antagonist Title: Named after the chief enemy of the game.
  • Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Rex is red, Bloop is blue, Spike is yellow and Gwen is purple.
  • Bonus Stage: Three that pop up throughout the game. One has you eat as many Trogs as you can, another has you burn as many Trogs as possible with fire breath, and the last has you collect as many gems as possible.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Or having a good attempt at doing so. Whenever a spring-powered Trog lands on a trampoline, he gets splatted against the monitor screen.
  • Breath Weapon: If you eat the chili pepper
  • Camera Abuse: If one of the Trogs wearing spring shoes lands on a bounce pad, the combined bouncing power launches them into the screen.
  • Claymation: or "PLAYmation" to be exact. Partly as an Incredibly Lame Pun and partly to work around the trademark.
  • Cute Bruiser: The dinos.
  • Cutscene: Happen occasionally in both the arcade and NES ports where the Trogs are shown plotting some new way of killing you.
  • Cyclops: The Trogs.
  • Easter Egg: The hidden warp system. At the start of any level except 1 and 48, a particular egg (one for each dino in the game, in the corner opposite that dino's start position) will very briefly sparkle. If a player clears all their eggs without dying, and clears the sparkly egg last, as well as the exit a pit with flashing squares in it will open somewhere. If any dino (not just the victorious one) falls down that pit, all dinos will warp 2 or 3 levels ahead and will get a bonus.
  • Exotic Entree: Your fate if a Trog kills you; they get shown feasting on your remains, complete with silverware, until you're skeletonized.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: When you turn into a T-rex from the pineapples, you can actually chase and eat the Trogs.
  • Megaton Punch: Your primary weapon against Trogs; your third punch will hurl them off the screen.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: The dinosaur characters have the bodies of a tyrannosaurus with the heads of a styracosaurus.
  • Monowheel Mayhem: Trogs roll wheels at you on later levels.
  • Oh, Crap!: When they are about to be eaten by a t-rex, Trogs react appropriately.
  • Punny Name: Rex, obviously. Also Bloop (he's blue).
  • Ring Out: You can fall off the edge of the play area and so can the Trogs.
  • Schmuck Bait: If two or more dinos have collected all their eggs, sometimes each has a different (colour-coded) exit. If a dino should go into the wrong exit (or a Trog into any exit), it will turn into a pit and swallow them.
  • Screams Like a Little Girl: Any dino who falls off the edge of the island.
  • Spring Coil: Later levels have Trogs coming at you by bouncing around on springs.
  • Smurfette Principle: Gwen. Not that she looks or sounds different from her male companions though.
  • Tyrannosaurus rex: What you become when you eat the pineapple; you're invincible for a short time and can eat the Trogs.
  • Unwinnable by Mistake: In multiplayer, the last egg for one of the dinos sometimes fails to spawn, in which case that dino cannot win the round.
  • invokedWhat Could Have Been: In the prototype, the player didn't control his dino directly, instead laying bones in the dino's path to force it to turn. This however proved too confusing, so a more conventional control system was implemented instead.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: The arcade version has the Trogs with hair (and clothing) of blue, red, green or yellow.

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