Bully 2 would have seen its development hampered by layoffs and reduced resources

If the project seems today on the verge of being materialized in the eyes of the general public, the development of Bully 2 was marked by pitfalls which obviously led to a first cancellation. Redundancies and reduced resources are believed to be at the root of this latest decision.

Ardently desired by the players of the only component available to date, a sequel to bully failed to be announced at the recent Game Awards. A disappointment after the fact, but let’s remember that the idea of ​​this Bully 2 had apparently been abandoned many years ago at Rockstar.

But what happened behind the scenes? A Game Informer article, titled “The Version of Bully 2 You’ll Never Play,” just raised a corner of the curtain on this mystery. At the end of the 2000s, Rockstar New England, formerly Mad Doc Software and which had just been acquired by Rockstar, was keen to prove its quality in the development of an ambitious title.

Bully 2: between 6 to 8 hours were playable in its first version

Rockstar New England studio was supposed to take care of the sequel to bully, but Rockstar’s priorities decided otherwise. Max Payne 3 and Red Dead Redemption thus appeared as more important projects for the publisher, and a developer to evoke the very difficulty of existing for Rockstar New England:

“[Rockstar New England] wanted to kind of be Rockstar’s darling, but it was really tough when Rockstar North [NDLR : développeur de GTA] was the one who produced all the golden eggs at the time. Living in the shadow of someone who casts a shadow like Rockstar North’s, and trying to usurp that role, it’s really difficult and almost impossible. But damn they tried. Oh yeah.”

Five former members of Rockstar New England and one from New York headquarters have been approached to comment on the matter. Rockstar had asked Mad Doc Software to develop a new version of Bully on Xbox 360 and PC, following the success of the first release on PS2. Following this, the studio was bought by the publisher.

Little by little, the craze for working in such a famous company has subsided. Rockstar New Englash discovered that the crunch was even more important to his new employer. But despite everything, after working in support on several Rockstar titles, the studio had the chance to prove itself with the full development of a new title: Bully 2.

Except that at the end of the 2000s, Rockstar began to put its eggs in one basket, thus reducing the number of its new releases. For its part, according to three sources, all Rockstar New England was working on Bully 2. We are told that a six to eight hour version was playable. Rockstar, however, began to dig into the studio to find people who could help with other projects. Developers who never came back to work on Bully 2 afterwards.

As a result of a predominance of crunch and a change in culture, members of Rockstar Newx England left on their own, when they simply weren’t fired. Difficult, under these conditions, to deliver a Bully 2 up to the studio’s ambition. A story that would still have several chapters to scroll, if the project has been resumed.

Source: Game Informer

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