Before he's even had a chance to ditch class or hock a loogie in a single freshman's face, Jimmy Hopkins Bully's 15-year-old hothead is already making a name for himself as the hero of the next bad game to ban. What, you mean PTA groups and antiviolence crusaders take issue with a game in which your main mission is to rise to the top of a juvie-delinquent school's social order by fighting dirty and attending as few classes as possible? It doesn't help that Bully is from the publisher of the Grand Theft Auto and employs the same do-anything mechanic even if the hero isn't old enough to drive.
The makers of Grand Theft Auto swap prostitutes and carjacking for wedgies and cutting class at this prep school. Also, as in its controversial cousin, you’ll always have multiple avenues for reaching the top of the class. Need the secret password to a house on campus? Choice No.1: Politely ask yourfellow schoolmate Choice No. t Give him a swirly until he spills the beans. Yeah, we’d choose the latter, too.
We've all known a bully--that kid in school who had a reputation for "borrowing" lunch money, cutting class, and greeting others with a fist to the face. And even though we knew these troublemakers were in the wrong, it was hard not to admire their power over the student body. Thanks to Rockstar and its Grand Theft Ar/fo-inspired game Bully, it's now your turn to rule the school through intimidation and--when needed--muscle.
Here you step into the shoes of Jimmy Hopkins, a 15-year-old ruffian who, according to Rockstar spokesman Hamish Brown, "heads to Bullworth Academy because no other school will take him." The goal is clear: Climb your way to the top of Bullworth's social order by the end of the school year. Like GTA, the campus is a living and breathing environment where completing certain missions helps improve your standing. We'll assume most of you are more familiar with the receiving end of schoolyard bullying (hey, don't get bent out of shape-- so were we), so here's a quick three-step primer on how to be the wedge-r, as opposed to the wedg-ie. Those of you who were bullies, think of this as a nostalgic trip down memory lane.
Play by Your Own Rules
Obviously, being at boarding school means Jimmy has a full academic schedule. But does that mean he actually goes to class? Not necessarily--it's totally up to you whether Jimmy pays attention to or neglects his studies. But if you continually play hooky, "teachers and prefects will begin to take notice and be tougher on you," says Brown. Heck, they'll even bitch if Jimmy doesn't wear the required school uniform.
If you do make it to class, you'll be treated to several minigame-esque events. For example, gym class may involve participating in a game of dodge-ball. Wonder what happens during sex education?
Picking fights is an integral part of the bully code--and Jimmy is a pro at egging on his fellow classmates. Aside from the usual assortment of punches, kicks, and grapples in Jimmy's repertoire, he can perform a variety of distasteful special moves, like hawking a loogie in another student's grill. And when knuckle sandwiches and saliva don't get the job done, he can resort to some classic childhood weapons such as slingshots, cherry bombs, and baseball bats.
Use Excessive Force
Remember, you have only one school year to reach true bully status, so make sure that everyone (and we mean everyone) at Bullworth knows that you mean business. For instance, one of the game's missions requires you to find out the password to a house on campus. Now, you could ask the knowing party in a nice, respectable manner (which would probably involve a long, drawn-out conversation), or--like a real bad boy--you could stuff his head into a dirty toilet (known to some folks as "giving a swirly") until he coughs up the necessary info. So if you want respect, don't show any.