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|Developer: Realtime Associates, Sega Away Team Beam Software|
|System(s): Sega Saturn, PC|
|Number of players: 1|
The plot revolves around the title character, Bug, an actor in Hollywood hoping to make his "big break". Players take control shortly after Bug has signed a deal for the lead role in an action film, in which his family is kidnapped by the evil Queen Cadavra and he is tasked with rescuing her. The gameplay takes place "on the set" of each scene of the movie, and cutscenes between levels show Bug moving from one set to the next.
Bug! is a "2.5D" platform game, which for the most part is played like a traditional side-scrolling title. At various points in the level, Bug is allowed to travel towards or away from the camera, up vertical surfaces, and even upside down, adding a third dimension in the process. However, players are always confined to corridors, meaning gameplay is not as "open" as future 3D platformers, for example, Super Mario 64. Though levels are built using 3D geometry, the objects in a level are represented by 2D sprites.
The game is set on "Bug Island" and consists of six worlds made up of three "scenes" each, with each final level culminating in a mandatory boss ("finale"). At certain points in the game bonus stages can be activated where certain tasks must be achieved (for example, one stage has Bug race against Sega's mascot, Sonic the Hedgehog). Enemies come in the form of insects and are defeated by jumping on them. Each level ends when the player jumps on a "Bug Stop", which will then make the player proceed to the next level. Every level contains collectable items: 1-UPs supply the player with an extra life, collecting a heart will restore one hit point to the player whereas Bug Juice will fully replenish it, and a coin will allow the player to take part in a bonus round whereby they are given the chance to win more lives. If the player runs out of Bug Juice, they lose a life. The game will end once the player runs out of continues.
Collectable items in the form of blue crystals are found scattered throughout the game's levels. If the player collects 100 of them, they will earn an extra life along with a dragonfly icon, in which three icons are needed for the player to take part in a special bonus round. In addition, the player can collect power ups which will enable them to defeat enemies instantly. These come in the form of "zap" and "spit" attacks; the former allows Bug to fire missiles made out of saliva for long-range attacks, and the latter unleashes a close-range bolt of electricity.
According to producer Steve Apour, "Once we were working on Bug!, we'd meet twice a week to talk about gameplay, just to plow through it and decide what the system could do. Some ideas we weren't able to include, such as the 'wait animation' where Bug was going to leap up and come down right in your face."
By the end of 1995, 150,000 copies of Bug! had been sold in the US, making it the second most popular Saturn game (behind Daytona USA). In Europe, it was the best selling CD game across all platforms for two weeks. Bug! toys and merchandise were sold in the gift shop of Sega World Sydney. According to Sega, discussions were underway for an animated TV series, though this never materialised.
A direct sequel, Bug Too!, was released for the Saturn in 1996.
Opening and Win Movies: Asbury Entertainment
A Realtime Associates, Inc. Sega Away Team Production
|Sega Retro Average|
| Based on|
|Sega Retro Average|
| Based on|
|PC, US (Expert Software)|
|PC, US (Expert Software; alt)|
The Sega Saturn version makes use of the Saturn's internal battery back-up to save progress. The game will save when an entire world is cleared.
|Games in the Bug! Series|
|Bug! (1995) | Bug Too! (1996)|
|Bootleg Sampler (1995) | Bug! Playable Preview (1995) | Sega Screams Volume 1 (199x)|