|System(s)||Arcade, Atari 2600, Intellivision, ColecoVision|
When Pac-Man arrived on the arcade scene, and literally took it over, the arcade industry stopped and took notice. So it wasn't long before imitations arrived on the scene. Three such imitations were Lock'n'Chase, Mouse Trap, and Lady Bug. Interestingly, all three games offer the player with a mechanism to alter the layout of the maze.
Lady Bug was an arcade game developed by Universal in 1981. While it borrowed heavily from the Pac-Man theme, it incorporated a few new ideas, more than most imitators. For one, the chasers and chasee were all insects, the protagonist being a ladybug. Next, not all of the maze walls are stationary. A good portion of the maze features turnstiles that can be swung about, providing you with escape routes from your would-be killers. And lastly, bonus items are scattered around the maze to spell out words like "SPECIAL" and "EXTRA" and increase the bonus multiplier.
Lady Bug had its share of fans, and so when Coleco was hunting for licenses that would compliment its ColecoVision system, they saw Lady Bug (as well as Mouse Trap) as good competition to Atari's Ms. Pac-Man. Coleco proceeded to develop and manufacture the game for their own system, as well as port it to Intellivision. While they advertised it in a catalog that listed forthcoming Atari 2600 games, Lady Bug never saw an official release. Until 2006, that is, when John W. Champeau of Champ Games programmed the game for the Atari 2600 from scratch, resulting in an outstanding conversion of a game that was almost lost to time.
In a world beneath man's notice, a war is being playing out in the gardens of every home; a survival of the fittest among all insect-kind. One Lady Bug is destined to outwit all of the others in a mad dash to claim all of the food in the garden before the other insects can get her. Will she be able to use the nature of the garden to outsmart her opponents, or will she end up as worm food. Only you can decide.