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Canis Canem Edit

Friday 29 September 2006
Canis Canem Edit - the schoolyard adventure game formerly known as Bully - is only four weeks away now, but you could be forgiven for being a little clueless about how the game will work. We've been hands-on with Canis once before but to give you more of an idea of what Bullworth Academy has in store, we've picked the three best missions from Chapter One.

This is your School
Your first task is scoping out the school. Gary, an ADD-suffering megalomaniac who befriends hero Jimmy Hopkins, gives you the tour. We'd hardly reached the front door before being jumped by bullies, though - Bullworth's playground is busy with other students, and if you've irritated a particular gang (the greasers, say, or the jocks) they'll try and give you a beating whenever they see you.

Fortunately, Canis Canem Edit's punchery is satisfyingly simple. From the start Jimmy can lash out with some basic combos or even grab weapons to fight with, like bin lids or planks. But fisticuffs doesn't always work. Inside, we bumped into Russell, the man-child bully leader, and taking on his powerful punches is a quick way to end up with concussion.

Russell demanded we pay him a 'Russell tax'. You can interact with everyone at Bullworth in either a nice or nasty way and so we hit the 'nice' option, stumping up $5 to stay safe. But you can be the bully, too, and if you sneak up behind someone and hit the 'nasty' option you'll give them a sore-looking wedgie.

Gary then shows you how you can help out other pupils, triggering side-missions like putting a letter in someone's locker or getting a fat girl's chocolates back for her.

Finally, the mission ends with your first lesson. All the classes are minigames and if you pass the test you'll get a bonus. We aced our first art lesson - a version of old-school game Qix - to get a health bonus from kissing girls. Just like real life.

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