Friday The 13th (NES video game)






Hirohiko Takayama


Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)

Release date(s)

February 1989


Survival horror

Game Mode(s)

Single player



Friday the 13th is a survival horror video game for the Nintendo Entertainment System released by LJN Ltd. in 1989. It was based on the film series of the same name and featured both hockey-masked serial killer Jason Voorhees and his mother, Pamela Voorhees.

Plot[edit | edit source]

It's a pretty typical summer at Crystal Lake. There's a group of happy children staying in the Camp. You and your six camp counselor friends are watching over the kids while enjoying the lake and the wilderness. The days are bright and sunny. The nights are cool and clear. But Jason is on a rampage, and it's up to you to stop him, but it's not going to be easy. You must first fight your way through forests filled with man-eating wolves, caves covered with blood sucking bats, and hordes of mindless zombies everywhere you turn. You must also help any friend who is in danger, or else you can just kiss them goodbye. Hiding in a cabin or staying adrift in a canoe won't keep you safe, as Jason will find you. The only way to survive this summer is to challenge Jason face to face, and destroy him.

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

In the video game, players take the role of any one of six camp counselors, switching between them as needed. As they explore the Camp Crystal Lake area, they are continually and randomly attacked by Jason.

Map of camp Crystal Lake

There are cabins near the lake that can only be accessed by boat. These cabins contain the small children who are camping at the lake and they too will be occasionally attacked by Jason. Should all the counselors be killed, the game ends with a message "You are your friends are dead: Game Over". If all the children are killed, the game is also over, albeit with a message "Jason wiped out all the kids." If one counselor is killed, he or she disappears from the selection menu.

Players can acquire various items to help them ward off Jason's attacks. At first, all counselors are armed with stones. Those are very weak weapons, especially if Jason shows up unexpectedly. However, weapons can be upgraded by finding knives, machetes, axes, torches (only found by lighting all the fireplaces in the large cabins) or a pitchfork. If a counselor enters a cabin where another counselor is inside, the current counselor can give the weapon upgrade to the dormant counselor. It is advisable to have all counselors upgraded to knives as soon as possible.

Jason appears randomly on the roads, then will run off after a short fight. If Jason attacks someone in a cabin, a "Jason alarm" will go off, and the map will show the counselor being attacked. The player can help the counselor in distress by getting to the cabin prior to the other counselor being killed, or become that counselor by switching counselors and immediately fighting Jason in the cabin. After a short fight, which is done in a 3-dimensional forum where Jason's blows are fairly predictable, either the counselor will be killed or Jason will take hits. If Jason loses a couple of his life bars, he will retreat and a short message will appear "You won...for now".

Some cabins are in the wooded areas, some of which have fireplaces which are needed to be lit to advance. It is safest to be in the woods during daytime where there are zombies but no wolves, as they are fast and strong enemies which require many hits to kill.

In order to win the game, Jason's life bar must be completely depleted three times. Once Jason's life bar is exhausted, that is considered one "day" in the course of the game. A cutscene will appear showing Jason knocked on his backside, and the message differs slightly depending on what day was completed. However, Jason becomes faster and more dangerous each time his life is depleted.

Counselors and Attributes[edit | edit source]

Counselor Icon Running Jumping Throwing Rowing
George F13NES-george.png Slow Low Average Fast
Mark F13NES-mark.png Fast High Slow Fast
Paul F13NES-paul.png Slow Low Fast Fast
Laura F13NES-laura.png Fast Low Fast Average
Debbie F13NES-debbi.png Slow Low Fast Average
Crissy F13NES-crissy.png Fast High Fast Slow

Weapons and Items[edit | edit source]

Item Icon Uses Notes


F13NES-stoneicon.png Weapon Every counselor starts with them. Takes three strikes from the stones to kill one zombie and five to take away one bar of Jason's life.
Knife F13NES-iconknife.png Weapon The next step up from the stones. You have to kill five zombies to get the knife. It takes two strikes from the knife to kill one zombie and four take away one bar of Jason's life.


F13NES-iconmachete.png Weapon The machete can be obtain by killing 60 zombies with one counselor, killing Pamela on the first day, or hiding in a room in the cave or cabin in the woods. (Letters in large cabins will instruct the player.) One strike from the machete will kill a zombie and three to take away one bar of Jason's life.
Axe F13NES-iconaxe.png Weapon The axe can be obtained by visiting one of the locked hidden rooms or in a locked cabin in the woods. Notes will give clues for when an axe can be found. One strike from an axe can kill a zombie, and two to take one bar away of Jason's life.
Torch ●● F13NES-iconttorch.png Weapon A torch can be found in a large cabin after all the fireplaces are lit. It is a slow weapon to throw but will remain burning on the ground to inflict damage for a short while. Takes one strike to kill one zombie and take away one bar of Jason's life.
Pitchfork ●● F13NES-iconpitchfork.png Weapon A pitchfork swipe can clear a path. One swipe of the pitchfork will kill everything in its path. One strike of the weapon will take one bar of Jason's life. It can only be obtained by killing Jason's mother on the third day.
Note F13NES-iconnote.png Item Notes can be found in large cabins. They give clues to where to find weapons and items as well as hints to destroy Jason.
Lighter F13NES-iconlighter.png Item Kill about three zombies to get the lighter. Use the lighter to light fireplaces in cabins. Light all the fireplaces and get the flashlight and a torch weapon (found in a big cabin around the lake).
Key ●●● F13NES-iconkey.png Item These are found randomly throughout the camp. Best place to find one are around the woods and cave. They are used to unlock cabins in the woods and hidden rooms in the cave.
Flashlight ●●● F13NES-iconflashlight.png Item Can get a flashlight by lighting all the big cabin fireplaces. It can be used to light up the cave.
Vitamin(s) ●●●● F13NES-iconvitamin.png Item Used to heal yourself and other counselors. It will heal and replace 4 bars of another counselor whose life bar is low. It also replace four bars in the life bar of the active counselor if his life is empty. You can collect multiple vitamins (the number of collected vitamins will show beside the icon).
Sweater ●●● F13NES-iconsweater.png Item The sweater of Pamela Vooorhees, Jason's mother. It will flash on the counselor and decrease damage taken by the wearer. It can only be obtained by killing Jason's mother on the second day

NOTES: ● Weapons are transferable using the selecting the "PASS" option on your screen . You can be in any room in the cabin but the counselor that you are wanting to pass it to must be in the same cabin.

●● The torch can only be obtained by the counselor who has lit the correct fireplaces and has followed the notes in the cabins. The item is still transferable as a weapon. The pitchfork can only be obtained by defeating Jason's mother on the third day.

●●● Items like the flashlight and sweater can only be obtained by the counselor who completed the task, and can only be used by that counselor. The flashlight can be obtained by any counselor, the sweater may only be obtained by one counselor who successfully completes the task of killing Jason's mother on the second day. Keys are obtained on the paths around or near the cave or woods. These items are not transferable.

●●●● Vitamins will replenish a small amount on the life bar if the counselor should happen to die and has this item in their inventory. Vitamins may also replenish counselors' life bar by a small amount if they are in the same cabin as you by using the "CURE" option.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

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