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Naughty Bear – first look

We all know teddy bears got their name from America's 26th president, Teddy Roosevelt. But the cute and cuddly nature of these stuffed bears is counter to what history tells us of probably our toughest leader to date, one who fought in wars and killed a fair number of men and bears alike. So presidential history buffs and gamers alike should be interested in Naughty Bear, a game that embraces the violent nature of their namesake.

Above: Naughty honing his social skills

As the developers took us through our first look at the teddy bear village, it was pretty charming, as happy bears of every color in the rainbow were a good time in an outdoorsy setting. But something that brings together this town of bears is the fact that they all hate outsider Naughty Bear and want to destroy him. So Naughty, who lives in the nearby woods, must defend himself by horribly murdering those out to get him.

As we watched Naughty skulk through the woods looking for his first casualty of the demo, one bear was going about his day fixing a fuse box that Naughty disabled. Naughty then snuck up behind the unknowing, cuddly guy and smashed his face into the power grid, frying his features and killing the first of many. And the fuse box is just one of many toys like it, as the whole town is like a playground, filled with different items for Naughty to use for his twisted needs. It’s a bit like Assassin’s Creed, what with the careful planning of mayhem,only your enemies leak stuffing instead of blood.

Above: He helps his furry friends enjoy the fire

Just how violent this demo got really surprised us, despite us thinking we were ready knowing the subject beforehand. Naughty stabs, bludgeons, curb stomps, and otherwise massacres whatever bears he can separate from the flock. One of the most shocking bits was when he stuck a gun in a kneeling bear’s mouth and blew his brains out. But the cruel nature of the violence was greatly outweighed by hilarity of the situation, as we couldn’t help but laugh.

But Naughty’s goal isn’t just murder. He wants to drive his enemies crazy as well, as he spreads chaos throughout the town to ruin everyone’s day. Scaring them is nearly as important as killing them and in an extreme case, one lead to the other. After Naughty freaked out a police bear to the breaking point, the cop pulled out his baton and beat himself to death with it. Yes, you can drive someone to suicide in this game, which is pretty awesome.

Above: Death looms over the unsuspecting victim, tee hee

We’re not sure if these amusing and witty snippets of action will add up to a great game, but it’s a nice place to start. We were just happy to see that this title seems to have more to it then the slightly old idea of cute things being violent, unlike other games (*cough*Fairytale*cough*Fights*cough*). With just a few months till a possible summer release, here’s hoping it all comes together.

Mar 11, 2010

Henry moved from the suburbs of northern Florida to work at GR+, and hasn't looked back once in seven years. When not collecting Mario toys, you can find him constantly checking his Twitter.