|System: X360, PS3||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Artificial Mind and Movement||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: 505 Games||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: June 29, 2010||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1 (2+ Online)||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Adam Brown
January 26, 2010 - There aren't many things cuter and more heartwarming than teddy bears. Since their creation in the early 1900s, these fuzzy bears have continued to grow in popularity and it's not hard to see why. Being soft, cuddly, and completely innocent, these bears have been a staple toy for younger children worldwide. But what would happen if these bears lost their friendliness, becoming angry, sinister, and even violent? We'll have to wait until June when Naughty Bear sees its release to find out fully, but until then this is what we know so far about the title that shows what happens when a good bear goes bad.
Recently released trailers depict the events that set this game in motion. They begin with Naughty Bear in his home, saddened by the fact that he wasn't invited to another teddy bear's birthday party. After contemplating it for awhile, Naughty Bear decides to go to the party anyway to deliver the gift that he has already procured for the event. On his way there, a couple other teddy bears laugh at him and he finally just snaps. Naughty Bear, tired of being looked down upon by the other teddy bears decides that it's him versus the world and all the other teddy bears must pay for the way they've treated him.
Let me just start off by stating that this definitely won't be a game for younger players. Naughty Bear is set to be an open-world game where messing with and destroying other teddy bears in sadistic and gruesome ways is the ultimate goal. There will be a wide variety of weapons to use throughout the game such as knives, machetes, baseball bats, and shotguns that will make quick work of your fellow bears. However, unlike in Fairytale Fights, your enemies won't erupt in fountains of blood but instead will do what you'd expect. Eviscerating a teddy bear will send puffs of stuffing and fabric into the air. While this may not seem as disturbing as if your enemies were squirting quarts of blood, it still looks pretty unsettling.
Just walking up to hordes of your fellow bears and pummeling them is the most straightforward way of dealing with Naughty Bear's problems, but there are definitely other options. Naughty can sneak into other bears' houses in order to steal things, set up traps, or just scare the stuffing out of them. Of course, when breaking into homes, you'll also have to be careful as to not get the authorities called on you. One way of accomplishing this involves breaking all of the nearby phones, making it impossible for your intended target to call for help. Naughty can also endeavor to rain on the other bears' parades by sabotaging other parties and events that they have planned, which likely also have lists that exclude your name. There seem to be a ton of ways to stick it to your foes, it just depends on whether you'd like to go about it in a more subtle or direct fashion.
Killing everything in sight will have the game labeling you as a psycho, while being more covert and underhanded will net you a label of clever. Either way, your progression and success in Naughty Bear will be determined by the naughty points you'll earn. Beating down and killing a teddy bear will earn you some points but killing him in front of other bears will score you even more. However, setting up a series of events and/or traps that result in scaring your target to the point where they commit suicide will rack your naughty points score up even higher.
As your naughty points score climbs, Naughty Bear will also move up in overall rank. With a total of fifty possible ranks to achieve, you can rest assured that you'll be doing some pretty awful things to quite a few teddy bears to earn each one. Increasing your rank will also unlock more areas, new levels, and additional abilities for Naughty Bear, giving him more misery to cause and new ways to do so. There will be a total of four areas on the Island of Perfection, where this game takes place, as well as 28 levels to play through. To help make it through all of these levels, Naughty will also be able to put on various outfits that will grant him different abilities. The few that have already been mentioned are Voodoo, Ninja, Policeman, Robot, and Doctor garb which will give Naughty new ways to exact his revenge against the other bears.
In addition to the single-player campaign, Naughty Bear will also include some multiplayer options to help extend the life of the game. Not much has been confirmed about exactly how many modes to expect or how many players will be able to play together at once, but a few modes have already been revealed. The modes slated to be included so far are king of the hill and capture the flag. However, to add another dimension to the online gameplay, players will also be able to enlist the help of A.I.-controlled bears. Exactly how to recruit these A.I. helpers, what they'll do, or whether or not they'll be helpful has yet to be confirmed, but hopefully we'll learn more about this aspect of the multiplayer as June approaches. Until then, don't count this one out just because of its seemingly child-friendly exterior.
CCC News Director