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Centipede (video game)

Centipede is a 1980 arcade game produced by Atari. It was one of the more popular arcade games of the entire 1980s.

The player is represented by a small, insect-like character at the bottom of the screen. The player moves the character about the bottom area of the screen with a trackball and fires laser shots at a centipede advancing from the top of the screen down through a field of mushrooms. Shooting the centipede's head creates another mushroom; shooting a body segment creates another centipede.

If the centipede reaches the bottom of the screen, it moves back and forth within the player area and adds segments to itself as it traverses each row. When all the centipede's segments are destroyed, a new centipede forms at the top of the player area. A player loses a life when hit by a centipede or another enemy, such as a spider, a flea which leave mushrooms behind when less than five are in the player area, or a scorpion which can poison a mushroom and send the centipede hurtling straight toward the player area. When a player loses a life, any mushrooms that have been partially destroyed are also restored.


Centipede was followed by Millipede in 1982, a somewhat less successful, though respectable, game.

This game, like many other Atari arcade games, was ported to the Atari 2600 for home play.

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