Fire the laser and move around the bottom quarter of the screen to take out centipedes and all of the other insects crawling around. The main goal in Centipede is to get the highest score possible.
With each new wave, different mushroom cap field configurations will emerge. Eventually, there will be more mushrooms on the screen that there is open space. This will give insects and centipedes less ‘wiggle’ room, and you will have to contend with more enemies.
Shoot a centipede in the middle will cause it to split up, essentially turning into two or more centipedes heading in your direction. Centipede is not a ‘winnable’ game, which makes getting a high score the main objective. Whenever a centipede is completely eliminated, one emerges at the top of the screen to take its place. Newly spawned centipedes have fewer segments than their predecessor, but they slither across the board at a quicker rate.