After enduring months of hype and anticipation surrounding 505 Games’ Naughty Bear title, we bring the low down on mischievious little scamp and his murderous gameplay.
Now considering that we have played Naughty Bear for a good few days now to soak up all of the psychotic fluffy loon’s modes and maniacal behaviour. We have had the good fortune of having seen that a good many other games reviewers have been more than a little despicable towards our favourite little Brown Bear. Yes there may be gripes here and there, but lets face it people, when do you ever read a review these days where you don’t see moans and groans over the slightest little thing? But wouldn’t it be nice if instead, just once, the reviewer took the time to point out the games finer attributes and talents? Oh, thats right, we do that here at GamesMediaPro don’t we? So if you are looking for a review that goes “Baaa!” along with the rest of the sheep, seeking approval and ‘uber cool’ status by slagging off every game regardless of its merits, then I am afraid you have come to wrong cyberzine, we are Games ‘Media’ Pro, those other chaps are nothing to do with us we are pleased to tell you.
Okay, that out of the way. Still with us? Good, let’s get on to the review of Naughty Bear shall we? Off to the Teddy Bears Party with us then, hacking limbs and smashing heads as we go.
Lining up in the picture to your right you will see the character in question himself. Note the slovenly stance and the malice that lurks behind those button eyes. This is no ordinary Teddy Bear here, and far from the one that you would snuggle up next to in your bed at night as a child to keep the monsters away. Naughty Bear IS the monster! If you were to go to bed with this loon lying next to you, then in the morning all you parents would find would be the small blood soaked PJ’s that you left behind, and maybe a scorch mark or two? Depending on the ‘modus operandi’ of your untimely demise. Such is the murderous intent and level of plain comedic invention that sees Naughty Bear coming up with more and more ingenious ways at ‘offing’ anyone to whom he takes even a passing dislike to. So Ramblers everywhere be warned that if you do ” go down to the woods today?” Then just don’t expect to come out in one piece. As if you run into Naughty Bear they will be mailing your remains to your next of kin in a couple of boxes and a jam jar!
The storyline of the game is very simple in that Naughty Bear doesn’t get an invite to the Teddy Bears Party and so, in his own inimittable way, he embarks on a furious tale of innovative and murderous revenge. We say ‘innnovative,’ because as you will discover in more than one truly ‘laugh out loud’ moment, that Naughty Bear can be extremely constructive and extravagant when it comes to devising ways at disposing of his fellow Bears.
So the game begins with you on your home of Paradise Island where you set out to open a can of ‘Kick Ass’ on the Isle’s other fluffy inhabitants. That will teach them to point and laugh at Naughty Bear, or forget his party invite thats for sure.
In what we found to be a more challenging title than the other reviewers would like you to believe, the gameplay is really centered around stealth. The longer that you can stay hidden from the questioning or downright loathsome attentions of the other bears, the better. This means that gameplay is far more difficult and varied than other reviewers would lead you to assume. So instead of how most of them seem to have played the game, just charging around hacking, maiming and shooting. You get far greater ‘Naughty Points’ and bonuses within the game, if you play the game how it was intended to be played. We advise gamers to use the cover as often as possible to their advantage, darting in an out of the forest quickly to sabotage various items from modes of transport, (which the bears will attempt to escape your psychopathic intentions in), to telephones that they will use to call the Police for help. There is also everything from stoves and barbecues to an array of differing weaponary made available to you. All of which can then be used to string together impressive looking combo’s and gain untold Naughty Points towards those all important unlocks at the level assesment at the end of each chapter or section.
During gameplay, it has to be said, that there are not only items such as weapons to be unlocked. But more notably everything from additional multiplayer content, characters and bonus levels can be achieved if you just put a little effort and imagination into your style of gameplay. Doing this will unlock previously unavailable content that will make your enjoyment of this cracking little title all the more sweeter. There are those gamers, and indeed so it would it seem reviewers, that are bound to complain of repetitive gameplay in Naughty Bear. We are here to tell you that this is not the case! How and what you get out of Naughty Bear is how and what you put into it. Meaning that if you want to experience a very different title than is the normal gaming fare, then experiment with the game. Replay previously completed levels to do things a little more technically and sneakily the next time round, and all that the game genuinely has to offer will become apparent and made available to you. If you just play the game as the developers designed it to be played. We cannot stress this point enough to gamers. Too long have gamers been used to having everything done for them, and when a title shows up that means that they have to us a little of the grey stuff between their ears ro bring out all the title has to offer, all they can do is cry ‘repetitive gameplay’ or quote bad reviews from bad reviewers. If this is not your type of thing, then simply purchase a different game. But do not abuse a quality title just because you could not be bothered to put the effort into playing the game, and could not wait to head back in to whatever frag head title has gripped you at the moment? Gaming is all about games, and there are more games out there than just FPS.
Along the way in Naughty Bear are secrets that need to be unearthed and fables to be told. Charaters such as the legendary ‘Unibear’ for example are just one of the secrets that the game holds, and if you are lucky enough to be able to actually catch a glimpse of one of the rare, shy creatures then make like a true Naughty Bear and terrify the very life out of it, before disposing of the horn-headed varmint in some spectacular fashion. Bonus awaits!
One of the more technically interesting aspects of the game is how open-ended the world becomes. That there are no scripted events, and instead all the bear’s antics are completely random, means that you can set up traps and more elaborate set-pieces of your own devising and create some pretty unique combo’s that spark together some truly hilarious chains of events. For example, driving a bear to suicide or killing a bear in plain sight might turn the witnesses insane with fright, leading to crazy scenes of self-exploding bears or mass suicides. Some may deem it inappropriate, but then they can always console themselves and appease their liberal consciences with Nintendogs or KrissX, maybe a spot of Countdown on Channel 4 would do they trick?
To top things offf nicely in Naughty Bear there is a nice blend of multiplayer action just waiting for you to pick up your controller and join in the merriment and mayhem. With four modes on offer that cover everything from co-op to competitive gameplay there is a little something here for everyone to enjoy and to be fair to 505 Games, it is a welcome break to play something else online other than the usual ‘run-of-the -mill’ combat shooter.
There is the chuckle-fest mode in Naughty Bear’s multiplayer that sees one lone bear playing as the Naughty Fella himself, going up against the team of bears who are guarding the World’s buggest Jelly. This provided many a giggle here in the office as we ran around scalping friends and colleagues or just roasting them on the barbecues. There is the standard ‘Deathmatch’ mode, and the Editor’s Choice award for online modes had to go to the joy that was ‘Golden Oozy,’ In this particular favourite of every here at GamesMediaPro Towers, players will take on the single combatant again, only this time round the player who takes on the solo side is armed with the World’s most powerful handgun. No, not the Magnum, although one is available as Cop Gordon when you unlock his character. The gun in question is the Golden Oozy, a weapon of immeasurable power, and therefore for the players who are attempting to take the soloist out, there has to be plenty of co-operation and deception going on, as the only way to take down the powerfully armed adversary is by sneaking up behind them and ‘doing them in’ with a swift backstab between the shoulder blades. But a highly enjoyable mode make no mistake.
So with all the unlocks, bonus content, additional online multiplayer action and first rate comedy gems that come by way of murdering your fluffy compadres, we can highly recommend Naughty Bear to those gamers who are looking for something new and fresh to take their mind away from Medal of Warfare Modern Battefield. We don’t deny that we experienced the same camera difficulties that most of the Whiney Brigade encountered, but at the end of the day we just entered the controller set up and adjusted the sensitivity and Robs your Mothers brother, all was well again. So to those other remarks that the whiners are crying about we will address them here shall we? Repetitive gameplay? I think we have taken care of that one in detail don’t you? Camera? Same thing. Next on the list of whines? Ah, now we understand, we were supposed to follow suit and join in the Naughty Bear bashing were we? Sorry to disappoint but we thoroughly enjoyed the game. And we can safely say that seeing that it is currently flying high on the UK Gaming Chart, that you will too!
So the fact of the matter is that this review and all others will come to down one thing, and that is personal gaming tastes. If you are the kind of gamer who closes off their gaming experience to anything that doesn’t involve online shooter action and warfare? Then this may not be for you,? We still say ‘may not’ as we are Frag Head’s too ,and we still enjoyed Naughty Bear. But if you are the kind of gamer that just loves gaming? Then this little beauty is for you all day long. The graphics are solid and the gameplay dependale. There are some minor issues with the camera during cinematic moments but nothing that will in any way detract from your gaming pleasure during this title. The audio is pleasant without reverting to the offensive to get the point across and even the gameplay itself, though obviously aimed at the more mature gamer, is by no means a ‘claret fest.’ So to round things off for you before the scoreboard, we can only tell you the facts as we see them. So in that respect we can honestly and thoroughly recommend Naughty Bear to those gamers who like nothing more than gaming. If that makes us uncool, then so be it. But we would rather be honest with you guys than fish for views and subscribers by ripping apart developers titles. One thing you will always be assured of here at GamesMediaPro is that we are not journalists and writers searching for credibilty. First and foremost we are gamers who review games. And we loved this one.
Graphics: Solid and dependable, a few minor blips on the radar but nothing to sink your Battleship. 7
Gameplay: Sniggeringly great fun when played correctly. The more you put in to Naughty Bear the more you will get out. 7
RePlay Value: With the amount of unlocks, bonus content and timed missions and just plain old great gaming fun. we can only tell you that we will be playing Naughty Bear long after this review has been consigned to history. 7
Presentation: Only a couple of minor hiccups stand between an additional point for Naughty Bear and the figure it recieved. The camera can be sorted out in the controller set up, but apart from that, this is a title that will keep you smiling long into the night. Audio is agreeable and gameplay satisfying. The multiplayer is good fun and the co-op well worthy of a repeat visit with friends. As a complete package you could do a lot worse than buy Naughty Bear this year, and lets be honest you probably will if you listen to those other reviewers. 7