Help Popeye in his quest to save his beloved Olive Oyl from the clutches of the evil Brutus. A multi-level platform game in the style of Donkey Kong, Popeye is set over 3 screens which have to be cleared to rescue Olive, by collecting the items Olive throws and negotiating the platforms by use of the ladders.
Popeye has two methods of defence on each screen. Firstly he can punch anything thrown at him (bottles and skulls). Secondly there is the Spinach, which when punched makes Popeye invincible for a few seconds. While Popeye has Spinach power he can catch Brutus and throw him into the water for bonus points.
The first screen sees Popeye having to catch the 20 hearts which Olive throws down the screen. The hearts must be collected before they reach the bottom of the screen, or they fall in the water and you lose a life. The hearts are paused for a few seconds
All the while Brutus is wandering around the level trying to catch you, and occasionally the Sea Hag appears to throw bottles at you, which must be avoided or punched. Brutus will jump up or down to the level you are on and try to hit you, which will lose you a life. He will also try to grab you from the level above by kneeling down and stretching his arm down at you. In addition, if Brutus is on the same level as you he will also thrown a rapid succession of bottles at you which must be avoided or punched.
On this screen Popeye has an extra method to slow Brutus down: he can hit the punchbag to cause the bucket to fall on Brutus' head, which stops him for a few extra vital seconds. There is also a one way ladder in the centre of the screen which Popeye can use to get down from the third to the second platform, and a passageway at the edge of the screen which allows Popeye to travel instantly from one side of the screen to the other.
The second level sees Popeye having to catch the notes thrown down by Olive to complete the musical score at the top of the screen. At the bottom left of this screen there is a see-saw Popeye can use to bounce from the bottom to the top platform. There is also a passageway from one side of the screen to the other on this stage.
The final screen is located on a ship and Popeye must catch the 'HELP' letters to build a ladder to the crow's nest where Olive is being held. Use the sliding platform at the top to scross from one side to the other. There is a large bird on this stage which swoops down and moves towards Popeye, but this can be punched to kill it. Completion of this screen sees Popeye rescue Olive, and then it all starts again but harder.
On later levels the Sea Hag also appears at the top of the screen and drops deadly skulls down which bounce down to the bottom of the screen, and must be avoided or punched.
If a heart, note or HELP letter is about the fall into the water, collect the Spinach to pause it for a few seconds.
Always kill Brutus when you get the Spinach, or you waste 3,000 potential points.
Use the tunnels at the side of stages one or two to confuse Brutus.
If Brutus pauses above you he is either about to reach or jump down to where you are.
When Brutus reaches down, he pauses for a couple of seconds when he retracts his hand, and you can use this time to run under him.