Graphics:
4.4
Gameplay:
4.0
Sound:
4.7
Control:
4.2
Replay Value:
3.4
Online Gameplay:
3.9
Overall Rating:
3.8
Publisher:
505 Games
Developer:
A2M
Number Of Players:
1-2
Genre:
Action/Adventure


You know, when I first heard about the concept behind Naughty Bear and started checking out some video installments of the maliciously hilarious “Book of Naughty,” I was quite enthusiastic about it. It was sort of like stomping on fuzzy childhood memories but there was a sadistically gleeful side of me that desperately wanted to beat the stuffing out of roving toy bears. …please don’t ask me why. Perhaps I need help. But then again, none of this really matters in the slightest because the game turned out to be a waste of my time, primarily due to poor execution, repetitive and unfulfilling gameplay, and a constant reminder of all the missed opportunities. This latter downfall made the experience all the more frustrating; every few minutes, I’d say to myself: “damn, it would’ve been so cool if they had done this…” It’s just too bad.

The low-grade graphics are part of the reason Naughty Bear trips and stumbles. It’s certainly colorful and I particularly liked some of the animations; I laughed out loud when a bear safely locked inside a house mocked me with the standard, tongue out, fingers waggling in the ears expression. The cut-scenes are decent, too, but that’s where the good news ends. There’s clipping and graphical hitches galore during the gameplay, the special effects are nowhere near where they need to be, and the level of detail and polish falls well below par for this generation. I understand the need to keep it cartoon-y – it’s the contrast, similar to what we saw in Fairytale Fights , that works – but without the requisite amount of refinement, the flaws become painfully evident. The minute you start to become somewhat immersed in the atmosphere, you spot another major drawback that makes you frown in disappointment. Overall, “lackluster” is almost too good of a description.

The sound is a little better, only due to the crisp sound effects that accompany your achievements (but do not accompany even the most brutal kills) and a genuinely humorous narrator. The soundtrack is almost as repetitive as the gameplay and it always takes a back seat to the effects, which aren’t even remotely memorable. One would expect that with the ability to burn bears to a crisp, hack the stuffing out of them, or electrocute their unknowing heads, the sound would be hysterically grisly. Instead, it all sounds sort of muted and dull, and only very occasionally does the sound seem to enhance your killing spree. There’s also a significant balancing issue, as some of the environmental effects are much louder than others, and far-off sounds can be just as loud as up-close-and-personal audio. As a whole, the technicals just don’t work very well and again, it’s a shame.

I suppose we could get past the shoddy technical aspects of any production if the gameplay is fun, tight, and ultimately satisfying. And although it starts off semi-entertaining, everything gets old really fast, for a number of reasons. But first, let’s start on a positive note- the game starts as “naughty bear” is shunned from a birthday party. He wasn’t invited and when he still tries to act in good faith and show up with a present, he’s laughed off the premises. Well, this causes him to snap and sets the tone for the rest of the adventure: you’re gonna get your revenge, and it doesn’t matter if the bear deserves it or not. The goal is to find new and unique ways to terrorize the inhabitants of the town, and this can involve scaring the crap out of them, torturing them, and executing insane kills with either environmental tools or a variety of weapons, ranging from axes, baseball bats and even a gun.

Sounds just plain nutty, right? You can hide in wooded areas with a big palm leaf shielding your existence, lay down traps for unsuspecting wanderers, sneak up behind bears and push them into bonfires, shove them into electrical boxes, and even scrape their head along turntables. Each weapon has a unique kill animation; after beating on a bear enough, you have the option of hitting the R2 button and executing an immediate kill: if you’ve got a stick, naughty bear will actually sit on his victim and rub the stick into his or her face until the bear ignites. He’ll just keep beating on an opponent with a bat and if you so choose, you can even scare the ever-loving crap out of them (this could even result in death). The game encourages you to be inventive and switch it up; your “kill chain” continues to fill if you keep using different weapons and finding new ways to slay bears.

Yeah, great. Unfortunately, the problems are everywhere. First of all, as soon as one bear is alerted, every last bear in the vicinity is alerted, and will remain so forever. That basically eliminates any chance you have at stealth, although you might get lucky as the entirely unreliable AI might cause a fleeing bear to suddenly stop and warm his hands at a bonfire. Furthermore, while they can never seem to hear you run up behind them, they apparently have super-bear hearing when you’re slinking around outside and they’re inside a house. You’ll likely have seen most every unique kill animation within the first hour of play, picking up a gun turns the game into a slow-moving, badly conceived third-person shooter, and the massive clipping issues combined with poor visuals really hinder the experience. In the end, I just got really bored and really disappointed.

You end up doing the same things over and over and all the fun goes away extremely quickly. How bears are alerted and how they react appear entirely random and erratic, there’s only so many times you can stab a bear in the stomach before you start to yawn, the stealth (sneaking, hiding) and action (combat, general movement) is essentially broken and oh yes, the camera is downright awful. One time, I laid a trap just outside a door and when the bear got stuck and I went up to finish the job, the camera view got so wonked-out, I was seeing bits and pieces of bears and houses and trees in strobe-like, screwed-up display. Naughty Bear is just another game that features a great concept but fails miserably in execution, which is why you really shouldn’t bother paying full pop for this one. Maybe when it arrives in the bargain bin (which won’t be long) and you’ve got absolutely nothing to do…and you’re a touch masochistic…

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MartyRules
MartyRules
11 years ago

To bad, I had high hopes for this game. oh well I guess I need to save for next couple of months NE way

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
11 years ago

Wow, to tell the truth though I never understood why so many people thought this would be a good game.

Kangasfwa
Kangasfwa
11 years ago

Especially when since it's developed by A2M, the makers behind Wet.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
11 years ago

Wet was mediocre, this sounds like trash, but I haven't played it (nor will I) but I trust Ben.

JMO_INDY
JMO_INDY
11 years ago

For shame…naughty developers.

Alienange
Alienange
11 years ago

Wouldn't just about ANYONE snap if the same things happened to them? Can't really blame this bear can we?

I'll tell you though, your comment about warming hands at the bonfire was hilarious. Great review.

You only left out the part where you feel like a creep walking around the store holding this game for purchase.

fluffer nutter
fluffer nutter
11 years ago

I thought he was sent a copy to review?

Scarecrow
Scarecrow
11 years ago

Too bad, this had a lot of potential

Danny007
Danny007
11 years ago

I was expecting it to be low, but not that low. Dang, I had high expectations for this game. O well… Thanks for warning us Ben.


Last edited by Danny007 on 7/6/2010 10:25:58 PM

Mamills
Mamills
11 years ago

Yet another game going nowhere, never expected anything from it. i really don't know why people expected anything from it.

What was with the hype?

looked like crap from the get go. not to say a game like this cant work.
conkers bad fur day was awesome, this is not.
Graphics are horrible, gameplay looks dull and it doesn't even seem funny.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
11 years ago

That's along the lines of what I was thinking.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

OUCH! That's a bad score. This game must absolutely suck.

Bugzbunny109
Bugzbunny109
11 years ago

3.8?! Oh my god!!!! I have never seen a review score this generation that low.

Mr Bitey
Mr Bitey
11 years ago

Rouge Warrior

Jawknee
Jawknee
11 years ago

I've never seen a game with a score this low.

MyWorstNightmar
MyWorstNightmar
11 years ago

And you can only imagine Mr.__________ will think it to be one of the greatest games of all time. I am waiting for his comment.

Jawknee
Jawknee
11 years ago

Wouldn't surprise me. Maybe this was the game he had in mind when he said Xbox devs are putting out games that make Uncharted 2 look like a last generation game. lol!

Kangasfwa
Kangasfwa
11 years ago

I found a game called "riding star" (i think that's its title) for the PS2 rated 1.5 (or close to that, it was below 2 I remember).

Anyway, Ben and Arnold, your work is much appreciated.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
11 years ago
Jawknee
Jawknee
11 years ago

lol nice, i haven't dug around the reviews, thanks for linking them.

EDIT: I completely missed that Last Rebellion review.


Last edited by Jawknee on 7/7/2010 12:08:56 AM

Vitron
Vitron
11 years ago

MyWOrst.

LOL, so true.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
11 years ago

Good memory, Kangasfwa!

It was Riding Star(for the PS2), and it got a 1.6 rating from Ben.

I'm not absolutely positive so don't quote me, but I think RS's 1.6 might just be the lowest score ever given to a review here.

Ben should be around soon enough to tell us, though.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
11 years ago

Yep, and it is indeed the lowest.

Banky A
Banky A
11 years ago

Just can't get up there with Naughty Dog can it?

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
11 years ago

Well, it was developed by A2M. Not a pleasant visual there to begin with.

Vitron
Vitron
11 years ago

Wow I could not believe it would be this bad.

Thanks Ben for the warning

sonic1899
sonic1899
11 years ago

I knew I was going say this game was "bad"…but not in the old sense of the word… 😛

Robochic
Robochic
11 years ago

Ben Thank you for the warning, defently a bargain bin game.

@ MyWorstNightmar & Jawknee LOL so F'ing true. LOL!!! u made my night.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
11 years ago

Low score or not, I'll still get it.
Just as soon it's in the $5 bargain bin, for my collection.

And I still need Riding Star for my PS2 collection, but I won't pay more than 50cents to a buck for it.

And it had better have a mint copy, manual & case too(although I'm sure most copy's are mint, & were put away after only one sitting, once the little tykes saw it more as a T.P. day at the crapola festival).

spiderboi
spiderboi
11 years ago

I was pretty amused by the concept of this game. thanks Ben for not letting me have the mistake of buying this 🙂

___________
___________
11 years ago

i always saw this game as fairytale frights, i always said to myself how bad could it be?
after playing fairytale frights i was 100% positive it will be the worst game i ever play.
oh, how wrong i was!
i thought it would be impossible, like the getting all your limbs blown off, thrown off a 1000 story building, getting fed into a wood chipper, than covered in thermite than lit , and surviving impossible!
sadly i was wrong.
lets hope naughty bear will not prove me wrong again.

what is the point of this game?
HONESTLY!
killing bears?
what for?
because its naughty?
OMFG!!!!!!!
remember watching those serial killer shows and thinking to yourself what in gods name would possess someone to do a sick thing like that?
well now i have the answer!

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

OK…..so, does that mean that you like it?

___________
___________
11 years ago

ahhhhhh i say its the worst game i have ever played, and you misconstrue that to me liking it?
im talking to turtles or something am i?

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
11 years ago

No, but you were hardly clear with your post, were you? That is why I asked.

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
11 years ago

Same boat with Highlander, took me a while to figure out that you actually hate Naughty Bear.

___________
___________
11 years ago

how is calling a game the worst game i have ever played unclear?

i hate the game because it is so boring and pointless.
you just go running around killing bears for the sake of it.
fairytale frights at least had a point to it, it had a plot, naughty bear does not.
its willy nilly for the sake of willy nilly.

kraygen
kraygen
11 years ago

Yeah I was hoping this game would be fun just because I thought it would be hilarious to find as many sadistic ways as possible to kill stuffed teddy bears. However I was afraid this would be the case which is why I didn't pre-order and am now never going to play it.

Wage SLAVES
Wage SLAVES
11 years ago

Dayamn! WIPEOUT!!!!

I was kinda hoping it would turn out like Conker…thanks Ben for taking one for the team. Ouch…

JackC8
JackC8
11 years ago

It sounded like an extremely lame gimmick right from the start: teddy bears killing each other – isn't that cool!?!? Maybe for about 5 minutes. Not surprising it turned out like crap.

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
11 years ago

Even when I watched the a footage of it for the first time, nothing looks appealing to me…..

Has 505 Games ever released any good games?

NeoHumpty
NeoHumpty
11 years ago

lol. I actually did a double take on the score. I didn't have high hopes for it, but dayum. Maybe they should have made is smaller and downloadable….and made it work right…..

bOnEs
bOnEs
11 years ago

i expected this low score after seeing what other sites were giving this game… but, i am still not turned away… i WILL rent this game someday soon because, even if it is repetitive, it's no different than a flash game, or the playstation minis…

i am used to repetitiveness… all games have it… even one of my most cherished ones, the GTA series, has a lot of repetitiveness…

it's the glitches and bad camera angles that could bother me a bit but, i still think the overall concept sounds like fun… so, i will rent this someday soon, i just won't go out and buy a copy…

ro kurorai
ro kurorai
11 years ago

Turns out we have to get our cutesy-cartoon-violence-fix by playing Conker's Bad Fur Day – the N64 original, not the butchered Xbox re-make ^^
CBFD was violent, mature, vulgar, hilarious, witty and featured superb art direction, as expected by RareWare (when they were still working for Nintendo).

The story was excellent as well and the voice acting was the best of its time (comparable to U2's or RDR's nowadays).
Not to mention all the fantastic movie parodies and the stellar MP, which imo was better than GoldenEye's, way more fun and variety 😛


Last edited by ro kurorai on 7/7/2010 12:18:43 PM

CharlesD
CharlesD
11 years ago

Must say I was quite disappointed with this one. I was looking forward to it due to the hope that the concept could be brought to justice w. a halfway decent control and display scheme. Even if it scored in the low seven range I would have probably picked it up. Looks like this epic fail will render the concept entirely unusable:'(

hadouken
hadouken
11 years ago

Really for reason I didn't think this was going to be any good. I guess too bad huh!

DazeOfWar
DazeOfWar
11 years ago

Sure glad I wasn't planning on buying this.

SirLoin of Beef
SirLoin of Beef
11 years ago

Too bad. After seeing some initial stuff about, I was intrigued by the concept. After reading this review and others like it, I'll be passing on this one.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
11 years ago

I'm so mad they they screwed this game up…..

…that I just ripped all the freakin' heads off of my gummy bears!!!!

cassaday
cassaday
11 years ago

It really sounds like this should have been a Downloadable title. I thought the idea would have been great for a "novelty" game, you know, fun for a few hours and then you leave it alone. I guess it doesn't even deserve that!

Thanks for the review.

Bandit King
Bandit King
11 years ago

Well, I can't say I'm shocked. After playing the demo of WET I moved A2M to my list of crappy devs/publishers. WET suffered all the issues mentioned here, clipping, poor graphics and just about everything falling well below par for this generation. A2M/505 games reminds me of those guys that made that terrible XBlades game.

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