Crazy Climber is a coin-operated arcade game produced by Nichibutsu in 1980. It was also released in North America by Taito America Corporation by UA Ltd. in 1982 for the Emerson Arcadia 2001 and other video game consoles. It is one of Nichibutsu's most highly acclaimed video games in its library. A precursor to the platform game genre, Crazy Climber was the first video game revolving around climbing, specifically climbing buildings, before Nintendo's 1981 release Donkey Kong.
In Crazy Climber the player assumes the role of a stunt performer who is attempting to climb to the top of four skyscrapers. There are a number of obstacles and dangers to avoid including:
Windows that open and close (the most common danger).
Bald-headed residents (a.k.a. Mad Doctors), who throw objects such as flower pots, buckets of water and fruit in an effort to knock the climber off the building (with larger objects appearing by more aggressive Mad Doctors in later levels).
A giant condor, who drops eggs and excrement aimed at the climber (two at a time in the early stages, four in later levels).
A giant ape (styled like King Kong), whose punch can prove deadly (he becomes more aggressive in later levels).
Falling steel girders and iron dumbbells (more numerous in the later levels).
Live wires, which protrude off electric signs.
Falling 'Crazy Climber' signs.
Some of these dangers appear at every level of the game; others make appearances only in later stages. Should the climber succumb to any one of these dangers, a new climber takes his place at the exact point where he fell; the last major danger is eliminated.
One ally the climber has is a pink 'Lucky Balloon'; if he is able to grab it, the climber is transported up 8 stories to a window. The window onto which it drops the climber may be about to close. If the window that the climber is dropped onto is fully closed, the balloon pauses there until the window opens up again. The player does not actually earn bonus points for catching the balloon, but he is awarded the normal 'step value' for each of the eight floors that he passes while holding the balloon.
If the climber is able to ascend to the top of a skyscraper and grabs the runner of a waiting helicopter, he earns a bonus and is transported to another skyscraper, which presents more dangers than the past. The helicopter would only wait about 30 seconds, then fly off.
If the player completes all four skyscrapers, he is taken back to the first skyscraper and the game restarts from the beginning, but the player keeps his score.
One feature was that the difficulty level of any game was modified to take into account the skill of previous players. Hence if a player pushed the high score up to say 250,000 (needed a really good player), any novice player following would get thoroughly wiped out for several games due to the increased difficulty level, and would have to play until it dropped back down.
Musical cues used throughout the game include 'Baby Elephant Walk', 'The Pink Panther Theme', and 'The Entertainer'. Some cues were played to announce a danger; others served as 'victory' music.
The game also featured an early use of voice emulation. If the climber is not moved for several seconds, a voice says 'Go for it!'
Crazy Climber is one of the few video games to use two joysticks and no buttons, and is also one of two non-twin-stick shooter games to do so (the other being Data East's Karate Champ, released years later in 1984.)
The Family Computer version had a special controller that could be used with it.
Find digital download of this game on
This version of Crazy Climber was designed for Atari 2600, which was commercially very successful video game console of second generation produced by Atari from 1977 to 1992. It was the first console that used removable memory modules with games. At the time of its greatest fame, more than 30 million units of this console were sold for about $ 200 a piece. To date, the game library for this console contains nearly 1,000 original games. More information about the
Atari 2600 can be found here.
Recommended Game Controllers:
You can control this game easily by using the keyboard of your PC (see the table next to the game). However, for maximum gaming enjoyment, we strongly recommend using a USB joystick that you simply plug into the USB port of your computer. If you do not have a joystick, buy a suitable USB controller on Amazon or AliExpress or in some of your favorite online stores.
Available online emulators:
5 different online emulators are available for Crazy Climber. These emulators differ not only in the technology they use to emulate old games, but also in support of various game controllers, multiplayer mode, mobile phone touchscreen, emulation speed, absence or presence of embedded ads and in many other parameters. For
maximum gaming enjoyment, it's important to choose the right emulator, because on each PC and in different Internet browsers, the individual emulators behave differently. The basic
features of each emulator available for this game Crazy Climber are summarized in the following table:
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