A guide to unlocking the worst character in the game, Frog, and the “Frog Zone” achievement.
Guide to Unlock Frog
This guide contains major spoilers on many things in Nuclear Throne, including game mechanics, characters, secret areas, and more.
Read with caution.
Frog is one of two secret characters in Nuclear Throne. He is the hardest character to unlock and is also arguably the worst one. Unlocking him will grant the player the “Frog Zone” achievement, which is obtained by playing as Frog for the first time.
Frog’s abilities are weak and some of them even work against him. He has two passives – the first passive is that he needs to constantly move. He cannot stand still at all unless you use his active ability. His second passive is that he is immune to poison. This makes the fight with the “Mom” boss on 2-1 L (loop) 1 much easier, due to the bosses attacks spawning poisonous gas as well as transforming the many ballguys she spawns into toxic ballguys. His active ability lets him stand still, and when you stop using your active ability several small clouds of poison will spew from Frog. Frog is overall a very bad character but is good for challenge runs.
If you are willing to follow this guide then I heavily recommend getting some experience with the game. You should be able to loop semi-consistently and your personal best in terms of distance traveled should be at least 3-3 L1.
Onto the actual guide…
How to Unlock Frog
Frog is unlocked by equipping and storing the golden frog pistol on a character.
In order to get the frog pistol, you need to reach 2-1 L1 and defeat the loop-exclusive boss there, called “Mom”. If you deal any damage to Mom with any golden weapon and then kill her, she will drop the frog pistol. You then need to bring the frog pistol to a proto chest (a chest that spawns in any crown vault if you have a crown. Weapons stored in the proto chest will be in the chest on later runs) and store it in there. If you then come back to the proto chest on a different run the frog pistol will become the golden frog pistol. Equipping it and surviving until the next level will store the golden frog pistol on your character, unlocking frog. To play as frog, simply equip the golden frog pistol on the character of your choice then play.
Using this loadout isn’t required to unlock frog. Play what you feel most comfortable with, this is simply what I thought was easiest to play.
I recommend playing as Crystal because Crystal essentially has a built in melee (her crystal shield) which can deflect/destroy most attacks. Some exceptions include really powerful bullets, some melee attacks (assassin and elite inspect to name a few), and lasers. This is really helpful because you may be spending your entire run stuck with a golden weapon (depending on your strategy). Her passive is also very useful, those two extra HP points have saved me many times and will probably save you just as many times.
You need to take some sort of crown so that the proto chest spawns in the crown vault (break a portal which spawns on some levels, fill it with rads, then destroy it when there is a green ball in the middle to enter the crown vault). It is also required to bring some sort of golden weapon to the Mom fight so that you can get the frog pistol. Alternatively, you can enter a crown vault sometime during your run to get a crown. I personally took the Crown of Curses because it makes the least changes to the game and the golden crossbow because I think that it is a well rounded golden weapon. This is because the golden crossbow is easy to find (it can be found pre-loop) and also because it is a strong weapon until about 6-1.
A picture of my ideal loadout.
First things first, a bit of preparation. Equip a crown if you have one the golden weapon of your choice then start the match. You can play as any character for this. Go to a crown vault with a crown and put the golden weapon in the proto chest. This is incase you somehow lose the golden weapon along the way and need to get it back. This also enables you to not have to carry the golden weapon all the way to 2-1 L1. Just go to the 1-2 L1 crown vault, go to the proto chest, and get your golden weapon! This minimizes the amount of time you need to use your (probably weak) golden weapon, so you can use the guns you want for as long as possible.
So you start the match, hoping to unlock frog, end up in 1-1. I typically go through 1-1 normally, get a level or two, then take oasis skip (open all chests and canisters in any world 1 level, kill the Big Bandit in less then ten secs after he spawns, go to 1-? aka the Oasis, then end up at 3-3). Whether or not you take oasis skip really depends on your play style, if you take oasis there will be less enemies (from 3-3+) but worse loot as well. If you don’t take oasis skip there will be more enemies but better loot in the later stages (from 3-3+). The quality of loot and the enemies that spawn are fair either way, so taking oasis skip or not really depends on your play style. I personally found it easier to take oasis skip due to there being less enemies on loop, but maybe you have a different play style.
You want to get your ultra mutation ASAP with Crystal, as one of her ultra mutations gives you +6 HP. This is super useful everywhere, especially if you are using a (probably weak) golden weapon in loop. It can give you that extra bit of protection you need to not die due to your limited weapon choices. If you have rhino skin and you take this ultra mutation, you will have the most HP possible in the game – 20 hit points. Going to the cursed crystal caves (by bringing a cursed weapon to 4-1) will probably grant you an extra level. It would also be wise to not take oasis skip and to get those few extra levels so you’ll get your ultra mutation quicker. I personally found oasis skip easier, but, as I’ve said many times before, it all depends on your play style. If you take oasis skip, you’ll probably get your ultra mutation around 1-3 L1. If you don’t, you may get it around 1-1 L1 or 1-2 L1. If you do well you might even get your ultra mutation at the throne fight!
When you get to 2-1 L1, proceed as normally until you reach the boss. Hit it once with your golden weapon, and at this point your golden weapon is no longer required. The frog pistol should then drop from the boss when it is killed, assuming you hit it with your golden weapon, of course. Take the frog pistol and keep moving. The frog pistol is rather strong, even in loop, so you shouldn’t worry too much.
Make your way to 3-2 L1 and enter the crown vault there. You can enter through any crown vault, although taking the 3-2 crown vault is heavily advised due to it being the first crown vault that spawns past 2-1. There are many ways to open the crown vault, but probably the safest (and the most rng dependent) is to have an I.D.P.D. van run it over. This will destroy the portal and kill any nearby enemies, which will more than likely feed the portal enough rads for it to open. Now just enter the crown vault and put the frog pistol in the proto chest.
The hard part is now over. Congrats if you’ve made it this far, because you’ve practically won at this point. Just don’t do anything stupid and you’ll be fine.
Now for the second and much easier part of unlocking frog. First start a new run as a character that doesn’t need a golden weapon. This is because you will be getting the golden frog pistol on this character which will automatically transform the character into Frog when used. I recommend Rouge because her starting weapon, the rouge rifle, is already very strong, better than most pre-loop golden weapons.
All that you need to do now is get to the crown vault with a crown, take the now golden frog pistol out of the proto chest, and survive until the next level to store the golden weapon.
Please, don’t die to the guardians with the frog pistol in hand. Just don’t.
The golden pistol won’t store because you did not survive until the next level and you will have to do the whole thing over again. Instead, kill the vault guardians before getting the frog pistol. After that, grab the frog pistol, go through the portal, and it will be stored on your character.
Congrats, you just unlocked Frog! Not many people can even dream of playing as him. To play as him, select the golden frog pistol and then start the match. Your character will automatically be transformed into Frog. Playing as frog for the first time will grant you the “Frog Zone” achievements, for all those completionists out there.