I heard Naughty Bear sucks massive dick, and I've seen gameplay vids that I think look fucking awful, but I still really want to play it.
I've been watching this game for a long time. The sheer concept of it made me tingle inside. A scorned teddy bear (which ironically looks identical to my childhood teddy bear) is shunned by teddy bear society and goes on a murderous rampage to exact his revenge. As the trailers began to roll out, especially the ones with the Alien/Blair Witch/Jaws spoofs, I got even more and more excited about the game. I promised myself I wouldn't pick this up on release day, even though I wanted the Friday the 13th slasher outfit you got from preordering AND/OR K-mart was selling it for $35 on release day.
I ended up picking up Naughty Bear this week through a trade at CAG. I had read the shitty reviews; I had heard about the freezes and bugs; but I had been waiting for this game for awhile and I went ahead and decided to get it. The kid who traded with me had only played the first level (I could tell by looking at his Xbox Gamercard) and didn't even try to haggle me when trading it, so I knew he probably didn't care for it.
While I was waiting for it to arrive, I read a shitton of negative reviews, like horrible, terrible ones. Usually, I don't really pay attention to reviews, but all the negative shit being said was getting to me. Plus, I kept reading about lots of freezing issues, even with the update that 505 games had put out. I have a newer 360 and I think that I am God, so I was hoping the freezing wouldn't affect me.
I got the game the next day and popped it in. I read through the ingame instruction manual to get a heads up for how shit works as far as the combo system and everything works. The premise is great - you control Naughty, a bear who is denied an invitation to another bear's birthday party, even after making a special present for him. After being shunned, the narrator - who is straight out of a children's afternoon program convinces Naughty to destroy the present and punish the other bears for humiliating him.
For each main level, there are certain objectives that have to be met before continuing on to the next level. The first objective is to punish a certain bear (the one wearing a hat), secondly, reach a certain number of Naughty Points and there is usually an optional objective to destroy a certain number of items (gifts, badges, birds, etc.) - all which yield Naughty Points. I'll skip the explanation of the optional objectives as they are pretty self explanatory and really just have you destroy shit by smashing it, shooting it or throwing it in the fire/toilet.
Naughty Points are earned for just about everything naughty that Naughty does. Points decrease with each repeat action (example: Smash some balloons and you get 500 NP, smash more and you get 450, 400, 350, etc.) so it helps to mix things up and use different weapons and strategies for killing/maiming the other Bears. There is also a combo system in place that multiplies with each bit of naughtiness completed and slowly depletes when mayhem isn't be caused. There is a lot of strategy involved with accumulating Naughty Points. It's easy to go in and just kill the bears with hack and slash and break all their shit, but when you get creative, that's when the Naughty Points come rolling in. There are bronze, silver, gold and platinum trophies to be unlocked for each level by accumulating shittons of Naughty Points.
The main objective of the game is to exact revenge on Naughty's trespassers. I've only gotten through the first couple of levels, but each Bear has wronged Naughty or wants him removed from the island where the Bears live. Each level finds a group of bears getting ready for an event (I've seen a party and an election so far) and it's up to Naughty to exterminate them. Naughty can hide in the wooded areas in a stealth mode (branches in front of his face) and creep around the small Bear community to stalk the residents and plan their impending doom.
At his disposal are a bunch of weapons lying around, bear traps, land mines and a bunch of context-sensual areas that can be used to exact revenge on the Bears. The weapons range from knives to axes to guns to legs of beef and each features an ultra-kill option that features an execution animation (or two) that involves murdering a bear. They are fairly gruesome executions, comparable with Manhunt or the Punisher games. Naughty can also sabotage just about everything in the Bear's homes, including televisions, toilets and ovens - and when a Bear comes to fix it, Naughty can initiate a context-sensative kill with that item, ie. drowning them in the toilet or smashing their head in the oven. The execution moves and context sensual kills are known as Ultra-Kills and yield more Naughty Points. Bear traps and landmines can be used to injure the Bears and slow them down, or you can execute an Ultra-Kill (or scare) while they are trapped.
If you're not feeling so murderous, you can simply scare the Bears to death. Scattered around the map are closets and cupboards that Naughty can hide in and jump out of to scare the other Bears. Bears that have become startled, trapped in traps or that are distracted by fixing something can also be Ultra-Scared, and driven to insanity to the point they will kill themselves or their head explodes. Again, more Naughty Points for the Ultra-Scare, but you also get points for scaring the Bears when they see a dead Bear or hear a Bear screaming for help from a trap.
Anyway, that is pretty much the premise of the game. For each level of the game, their are sub-levels with different objectives than the main level - for instance, your objective may be just to kill all the bears or to kill the bears without being seen, etc. Basically a spin on the original level. Each requires a different strategy and provides an opportunity to whore more Naughty Points and trophies. With each trophy unlocked there is a new outfit unlocked - which provides additional benefits; more life/agililty/etc. and some have stealth and combat benefits as well.
I've only had one glitch since I got the game, it froze at the end of the first level, when going through the door to complete the level. I spent over 30 minutes figuring the game out and getting over a million Naughty Points and then it froze, had to reboot the 360 and got no credit for any of the points or for completing the level. I was fucking pissed. I even put the game on eBay before taking it off and deciding to give it another shot. I'm glad I did, haven't had anymore glitches and I've really started appreciating the game.
There are lots of things about this game that would annoy the casual gamer and cause them to hate this game. There isn't much variation in gameplay given to you, it's actually on you to get creative with carrying out the missions. The game can be very boring and tedious if you just kill, rinse, repeat. If you're a closet homicidal maniac, this game is perfect for you.
It reminds me of Smash TV, Manhunt, Hitman and Conker's Bad Fur Day all rolled up in a fat blunt and smoked straight to the head.
That's the best way to describe this game. If that appeals to you, light it up. If not, please don't.