Cool Spot is a mascot for 7 Up, introduced in 1987. During this time, the red spot in the 7 Up logo was anthropomorphized: given arms, legs, a mouth, and sunglasses. British video games developer Virgin Interactive’s American studio produced a platform game starring the 7 Up Spot, entitled Cool Spot. It was originally programmed in 1993 at Virgin Games USA by David Perry for the Mega Drive/Genesis and Super NES and then ported by other teams to Sega Master System, Sega Game Gear, Game Boy, Amiga and DOS in 1994.
The game is a 1-player platformer in which the player controls Cool Spot, who can jump, and attack by firing soda bubbles, which could be shot in all directions and while jumping. Cool Spot could also cling to and climb various things by jumping up in front of them. In each level the player must rescue other cool spots, who look exactly alike, from cages at the end of that level, which is not necessarily the point at the far right of the level map. In order to do so, the player is required to collect a certain number of “spots” that would change (usually increase) as the game progressed. “Spots” were placed across the level in large quantities, and were the game’s substitute for items such as the coins in Super Mario Bros or Sonic the Hedgehog’s gold rings (these were often used in this style of game, mostly for points and extra lives). A player’s health is monitored by a humorous Cool Spot face that gradually bends forward and will eventually fall from its position as damage occurs. Damage is taken by touching enemies, their projectiles, or certain level obstacles. Each level is played with a time limit. If the clock reached zero, a life would be lost regardless of a player’s health. If Spot lost a life and had no more lives left, the game would end, taking the player back to the title screen. The game had no save feature but did use checkpoints in the form of flagpoles. Once walked past, the flag would raise and a trumpet would sound. If a player lost a life after reaching a checkpoint, the player could restart further in the game. If the player successfully collects enough Spots to enter the Bonus Stage after defeating a level, it is possible to collect Continues by grabbing a letter hidden within the stage. Depending on the version of the game, all letters either spell “UNCOLA” (7up’s slogan), or “VIRGIN” (the game’s developer). If a Continue letter is collected, Spot will be able to restart on the level he was on at the time of losing his last life, although his total points will be reset.
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