The Game: Bongo the Ape sets your toes on fire while you’re asleep during a jungle expedition. So naturally, you drop everything to take revenge on the goofy gorilla. But first you have to reach him. The first level is a hazardous assortment of ramps and levels and a waterfall to jump across. Be careful of pesky little monkeys who can weigh you down so you move slower (and jump lower), and watch out for snakes. Then you have to hop across various islands and dodge more snakes as you try to get across a river. (Sega, 1983)
Memories: What an utterly strange gaming experience this is on the 5200. The system is much better equipped to handle this game than its older and less capable brother, and yet it still falls strangely flat. A big part of the problem is motion.
Your character has a full range of movement throughout the screen, and so do a few of the obstacles. But, to give one example, the falling coconuts that you need to dodge in the first level are clunky – it’s almost like an LCD handheld game, where the objects only have a handful of predetermined paths to follow. Which would make sense if this was an LCD version of Congo Bongo, but it’s not.
Other than that, the game is great to look at, a vast improvement over the Atari 2600 version also made by Sega.