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Travel Frog: Behind One of China’s Most Downloaded App Store Games

Developed by the Japanese Company: Hit-Point, Travel Frog is one of China’s most downloaded AppStore games. Upon seeing the many screenshots that my friends had posted on their social media accounts, I must say that acquiring a frog of my own took very little persuasion–I decided to name mine Dipsy, after the green Teletubby.

As a “frog owner,” you gain the privilege of observing your little frog do its own thing in its own little house: writing, eating, reading–you name it. But that’s not it–you also get to pack its little backpack and send it off on a journey across the nation, hence, the name “Travel Frog.” Some of my friends don’t see the point in the game at all–and I don’t blame them. In my honest opinion, nothing much happens in the game, really; yet, something about it lures my need to log in every once in a while. Perhaps it’s the anticipation of receiving cute digital postcards and the occasional souvenir that your frog may bring back from its trips.

It’s funny, but I do get annoyed to see my Frog traveling for days without any signs of its existence. Similarly, seeing it back in its little crib ignites a tiny burst of joy. I promise that it isn’t just me, for my “frog owner” friends and I will sometimes engage in lengthy conversations over the lives of our little frogs.

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At first, the game didn’t seem to mean much for me. But as I started to read articles about it, I was drawn to the philosophical meaning that it’s supposed to hold. The game is often associated with the idea of  “parenting anxieties” that comes with caring for a child. Personally, however, I must say that owning a virtual frog and actual parenting are two very different things that cannot be compared on any level.

To others, the game also promotes a “Buddhist attitude,” with the minimalist ideology that it encompasses. The lack of competition and the inability to exert control over the game as the frog ventures the nation encourages people to let go of their stress and to live without worrying. As much as I want to agree with this concept, I have to admit this game has had little effect on my level of stress. 

Nevertheless, “Travel Frog” is a uniquely interesting game, and I encourage everyone to give it a go!

Image via The Star Online. 

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