Bug! is a 3D rendered platform/adventure video game developed by Realtime Associates for the Sega Saturn. Released in 1995 as a launch game for the Saturn in North America, it was one of the earliest 3D platform games. It was later localized to Europe and Japan, then ported to Windows 3.x and Windows 95 on August 31, 1996 by Beam Software, on one CD that contains both versions of the game.
A sequel was released in 1996, Bug Too!.
The background plot centers around the title character, Bug!, a famous Hollywood star hoping to make his "biggest break" ever. Players take control shortly after Bug! has signed up a deal for the lead role in an action film in which his girlfriend is kidnapped by Queen Cadavra and must set out to rescue her. The gameplay takes place "on the set" of each scene and cutscenes between levels indicate Bug! moving over from one set to the next.
Bug! was played like a traditional side-scrolling adventure game. In the same fashion as Sonic the Hedgehog , Bug! must jump and stung on the heads of his enemies to defeat them while making his way through large levels and collecting power-ups. What sets Bug! apart is the game's 3D levels, which take the side-view and tweak it. Bug! can walk sidewise up vertical surfaces and even upside down. Each set of levels (ranging from a bright, green grassy area to a deep red, desert level) has a deeply individual look and feel.
Bug! released to strong critical acclaim from Game Informer magazine, which awarded it an "excellent" score of 9/10. It also received a 9/10 from Electric Playground and an 8/10 from Electronic Gaming Monthly. Sega Saturn Magazine gave the game 5 out of 5 stars, praising the game's massive size, high level of difficulty, and "stunning" graphics. GamePro gave it a moderately positive review. They commented that the huge levels and excellent graphics are what make the game overall enjoyable, and called it "an excellent game even with the lead character's annoying one-liners." Maximum gave it four out of five stars. They criticized the sometimes blocky and repetitive backdrops and "lacklustre music", but considered it an overall strong title due to the innovative 3D maneuvering, well-designed puzzles, and high longevity, calling the game "very definitely the toughest Sega Saturn release we've played to date." By contrast, Next Generation rated Bug! 3/5 stars, stating that "this title is mostly a direct translation of 2D gameplay into a 3D format." Likewise, GameSpot gave the PC version a 6/10, calling it "visually stunning" and praising the "quick and responsive" gameplay, but concluding that it "fails to explore any new territory...in a tired genre."
- "Sega Hopes to Run Rings Around the Competition with Early Release of the Saturn". Electronic Gaming Monthly (Ziff Davis) (72): 30. July 1995.
- McNamara, Andy; et al. (September 1995). "Not To Be Denied!". Game Informer. Retrieved 2014-03-15.
- "Bug!" Game Rankings. Accessed October 19, 2011. http://www.gamerankings.com/saturn/573934-bug/index.html
- "Review: Bug!". Sega Saturn Magazine (Emap International Limited) (1): 95. November 1995.
- "ProReview: Bug!". GamePro (IDG) (84): 44–45. September 1995.
- "Bug!". Maximum: The Video Game Magazine (Emap International Limited) (1): 147. October 1995.
- "Bug!". Next Generation (Imagine Media) 1 (9): 88–89. September 1995.
- Varner, Jim. "Bug! Review." GameSpot. Aug 29, 1996. http://www.gamespot.com/pc/action/bug/review.html