Catalogue of Arcade Emulation Software - the Absolute Reference

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Jungle King (Japan)

Jungle King (c) 08/1982 Taito.

Jungle King has four levels, each of which could be considered a separate game in their own right. It is notable that this game scrolls right to left, while the vast majority of scrollers go from left to right, although most people probably wouldn't even notice that.

* The first level may have been the best level in the game. You use your jump button to move from right to left across a series of swinging ropes, while avoiding the monkeys that can send you falling to the ground. This level is easy to master, but you do have to time your jumps to make it to the next vine.

* The second level is a swimming sequence. You move Tarzan around in the crocodile infested water. You have a breath meter here that you must watch to avoid drowning (simply swim up to the surface to get more air). You can stab the crocodiles with your knife, but only when their mouths are not all the way open.

* The third level is a rock jumping sequence. Simply use your joystick and jump button to leap over rolling boulders as you climb a hill on the way to your eventual goal.

* The fourth and final level has you guiding your intrepid hero through a native village. You have to jump the villagers while their spears are down, and eventually make your way towards Jane who is being lowered into a pot to be boiled for supper.

You then get to view a short 'I Love You' ending, and then the game begins again with increased difficulty.


Jungle King used the familiar 'Taito Classic' cabinet that was used for a variety of early 1980's games. This was a rather short cabinet, and had a monitor that was laid back at more than a 45 degree angle. Most of these cabinets featured the same painted sideart which consisted of an ornate border and a 'Taito' logo. Many other early Taito games will plug right into your Jungle King machine without modification (although the boardsets for these early games tend to be expensive). The marquee to this title showed a 'Jungle King' logo, with Tarzan to the left of it and a (rather slutty looking) blond woman tied to a tree on the right hand side. Jungle greenery filled the rest of the marquee's surface area. The monitor bezel was decorated with a red and orange design, while the control panel overlay had a cartoony jungle scene on it.

Prom Stickers : KN

Main CPU : Z80

Sound CPU : Z80

Sound Chips : (4x) AY8910, DAC

Screen orientation : Horizontal

Video resolution : 256 x 224 pixels

Screen refresh : 60.00 Hz

Palette colors : 64

Players : 2

Control : 8-way joystick

Buttons : 1 (JUMP/KNIFE)


It was the first 'side-scrolling, jumping & attacking game with a humanoid character', appearing in arcades three years before Miyamoto's classic "Super Mario Bros.". This was also the first video game ever to feature Tarzan as a playable character. But, Taito never bothered to get permission from the estate of Edgar Rice Burroughs, so they were sued for copyright infringement for using Tarzan's likeness. So this title quickly went out of production, and is rather rare today. They later reworked the graphics and released this game as "Jungle Hunt".

A prototype of this game is known as "Jungle Boy".

A reworked version of this game is known as "Pirate Pete".

A Jungle King unit appears in the 1983 movie 'Joysticks'.


In "Jungle Hunt" :

* An opening musical theme is played at certain parts of the game instead of the opening Tarzan yell - the same music that plays at the end of the swimming sequence.

* The life-lines he swings on between the trees in the forest are ropes instead of vines.

* The player character is a jungle explorer clad in a pith-helmet and safari jacket instead of the Tarzan character.


Successful jump between vines : 100 points

Killing Crocodiles : 100 points/crock

Each Crocodile killed after four in a row : 200 points/crock

Jump over small (or large) rock : 200 points

Run under large rock : 50 points

Jump over cannibal : 100 points

Finish rounds 1 to 3 : 500 points

Finsih round 4 (jump into girl) : timer bonus