Rockstar has been my favorite studio due to the Grand Theft Auto franchise. However, there was a time when the developer had a plethora of other IPs. Among other games in the early 2000s, the studio released Bully in 2006.
Having recently revisited this game, I found myself being absorbed in the excellent world and diverse gameplay of Bully. Several hours later, I was questioning why Rockstar never released a sequel to this game.
While the studio’s success with GTA Online 10 years ago changed its trajectory forever, I believe now is the perfect time for the studio to finally release the much-requested Bully 2.
Why it matters: Franchises like Midnight Club and Manhunt offered some of the best games in the early 2000s. Such variety ensured that Rockstar thrived through different genres, but this is no longer the case today.
Rockstar Relying Too Much On GTA
I think it is safe to say that we all have enjoyed playing GTA games, but Rockstar has become too reliant on the franchise. Over the last ten years, the developer has released only two games.
Apart from Red Dead Redemption 2, GTA 5 has been the team’s main focus, with the game being released three more times after its original arrival on the PS3 and Xbox 360. With this focus, it comes as no surprise that the studio’s next game is also a Grand Theft Auto title.
GTA 6 has been in development for around eight years, and this entry is expected to arrive in early 2025 at the latest. As excited as I am about the game, Rockstar desperately needs more variety in its catalog.
This is where Bully comes in. No other dormant Rockstar IP can rival the popularity of this series. To this day, fans are theorizing about a potential new entry and speculating about the allegedly canceled sequel.
Bully would be a breath of fresh air for the studio’s fanbase while allowing the team to work on something other than the Grand Theft Auto or Red Dead Redemption series.
A Timeless & Nostalgic Franchise
Though 2023 has been one of the best years for gaming, and I have enjoyed playing many games over the last few months, when I recently revisited Bullworth Academy, I concluded that the game is timeless.
From its setting to the protagonist, Bully is a very distinct game. Activities like the classes were unlike anything seen in modern games, allowing Rockstar’s unique game design to shine.
The dynamic of being able to skip certain classes also added to the fun, leading to a risk and reward factor. Additionally, I enjoyed the exploration of Bully more than most games.
Being able to partake in activities during the Carnival or racing in Go-Karts was a nice change of pace compared to the traditional gameplay loop of driving, shooting, and killing foes in other Rockstar titles.
Admittedly, Bully had the nostalgia factor for me. While playing the game, I immediately recalled my time spent with the game over a decade ago. However, I reckon this nostalgia factor will play a role for everyone else, bringing millions of fans back to this iconic franchise if Rockstar announces a new game.
Sky Is The Limit For A Sequel
Although a sequel may never come to fruition, with modern game design and technology, the possibilities would be endless for Bully 2, leading to a fresh experience, one that would continue the tradition of award-winning releases from the developer.
A game set in an institution like college would already open up more possibilities than ever for new types of classes, different hurdles, and varied side activities. Assuming Jimmy returns as the protagonist, an older version of the character would present a new story while retaining a sense of familiarity.
Modern innovations like smartphones and the interactivity of today’s classes could also mix things up, opening up possibilities for new mini-games or punishments in a scenario where Jimmy is caught cheating in an online exam, for example.
I’m sure the talented developers at Rockstar could come up with more than a few engaging mechanics and scenarios with today’s technology that would make Bully 2 a blast to play through.
For all of these reasons and more, I think we can agree that the franchise is very much due for another entry.
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Abiyan is on track to complete his Computer Science bachelor’s degree. His enthusiasm for writing and gaming motivates him to keep readers and gamers updated with the latest information from the industry. In his free time, Abiyan enjoys playing Dota 2 and Rocket League. Abiyan has also been cited in reputed websites such as Kitguru, Comicbook, GamingBible, Eurogamer and Gamingbolt.