Bully - hands-on

If you listened to all the insane parents and random, ignorant groups out there, Bully is the reason you cry yourself to sleep at night. They all took one look at this schoolyard tale woven by the same company that sells Grand Theft Auto and assumed the game was all about beating the crap out of kids, stealing their lunch money and glorifying everything we all hated about growing up.

In reality, Bully is almost the exact opposite. Jimmy Hopkins isn't out to cause trouble, or pick on students just for the sake of it - he's a normal kid who can't stand his constantly remarrying mother and isn't afraid to vent his frustrations in any way. As his mother jets off to yet another honeymoon, Jimmy's stuck at Bullworth Academy for a full year, forced to deal with another round of teachers, student cliques and an out-of-his-mind crazy that wants to take over the school.

On top of all that, you've still got class to attend. Bully sports an in-game clock that directly affects how you play the game. Classes run from 9-11, then again from 1-3. If you opt to cut class, prefects or teachers will be on the lookout (Metal Gear style) and can yank you out of whatever mission it is you're trying to finish. Thing is, you'll actually want to go to school, because each class is actually a minigame that teaches you new fighting moves, chemistry tricks and other helpful bits you'll need to complete the game. Hear that kids? Rockstar says, "Stay in school."

Brett Elston

A fomer Executive Editor at GamesRadar, Brett also contributed content to many other Future gaming publications including Nintendo Power, PC Gamer and Official Xbox Magazine. Brett has worked at Capcom in several senior roles, is an experienced podcaster, and now works as a Senior Manager of Content Communications at PlayStation SIE.