To Bear, or not to Bear…

Naughty Bear

Imagine an island full of cute and fuzzy teddy bears, all with adorable, cuddly sounding names like ‘chubby’, ‘stardust’, or ‘niggles’.  Now imagine being able to enter that world in the form of a bad-ass teddy bear with a lust for vengeance, as you take out your anger and frustrations at being an outcasted troublemaker on your fluffy, fellow island dwellers, with an array of lethal (and mostly sharp) weapons.  Does that sound good?  I certainly thought so!

Now, imagine having a rubbish control system,  a single animation for each of the few items you can kill another bear with, a ridiculously small ‘open’ world environment with pathetic, zoomed-in camera angles and controls, and not to mention some really mediocre AI to really get your fluff destroying juices flowing, albeit in the complete wrong direction.

Well, now you should be down to my level of excitement, ad you may be just as disappointed as me when I spent more than 30 painful minutes playing this atrocity of a game.  That’s right, I said atrocity.

I changed my mind about this game as quickly as I finished the first episode.  When I first started the game, the introductory cut-scene and hilarious commentary by the over-friendly narrator was a refreshing change to all the serious games I’ve been playing lately.  The story goes that none of the other bears like the player’s character, ‘Naughty Bear’, and in an act of vengeance he decides to wreak excessive havoc on any and all of them during their fun-filled festivities.  Teddy bear massacre!   What a brilliant concept!   Fluff replaces blood, dark, serious dialogue replaced by cute little squeaks, cheers, and laughter, screams replaced by, well, teddy bear screams, and last but regrettably not least, fun replaced by total crap.

I spent 30 minutes playing through the first episode, hunting down and torturing every last bear, and even allowing the police to turn up on their little boats, just so I could finish off every possible character that might appear and try and stop me.  I had a pretty decent multiplier to my score, and my points were really high.  The only problem was that by the time I had played for only 15 minutes, I was already bored and couldn’t bear it any longer.

The other bears laughed Naughty out of town when they heard he bought Naughty Bear on Xbox 360

The other bears laughed Naughty out of town when they heard he paid £32.99 for Naughty Bear

The game is a complete mess of bad camera angles, horrible controls, repetitive visuals, kills, and sound effects, and not to mention the tiny little locations that your allowed to ‘run riot’ in.  There is no skill involved in instantly hiding from the bears in the forest area, but then when you want to sneak up on a bear or plant a trap, it’s damn near impossible unless you’ve sabotaged something.  But once a single bear sees you, the entire bear population will then know you are there and all go into total panic mode, taking up arms and barricading doors or hunting you down.  As soon as you scare/kill your first bear, you will have to run around as fast as possible killing the rest of the bears and keeping your multiplier up because otherwise it drops right down and you end up with a rubbish score, all the while being chased by bears that decide they want to kill you one minute and then suddenly realize they want to hide in a closet the next.  No, there wasn’t any Hitman-style stealth kills to be had, or at least it never seemed to work when I tried it.

In all honesty, I did have a little fun with this when I first played it, but only because it was very funny.  Sadly, though, the humor is simply not enough to gloss over the terrible gameplay mechanics, awful controls, and crap camera angles you are forced to sit with when you attempt to play this dump-fest of a game.

If you are still REALLY interested in this unbearable game, then just rent it.  Do not buy.

Money spent wasted: £32.99
Immediate-trade-in value: £24.00

Total lost burned: £8.99

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