Cuddle Bear

Cuddle Bear received a Second Chance with the Chick.  Vast improvements have changed it from one of the worst games ever made to merely terrible.  I kid, it’s not really that bad anymore.  Read the new review.

In order for Cuddle Bear to be as bad as it looks, it would have to walk around kicking puppies and luring children into discarded refrigerators.  I’m not sure if it does those things, but I can’t swear it doesn’t.  This is one of the worst Xbox Live Indie Games of the year.  It didn’t start that bad.  You play as a psychotic teddy bear that goes around killing various bugs and animals.  You’re armed with a gun, you have the ability to buy more guns, and levels are usually filled with plenty of God’s creatures for you to gleefully murder.

No really, that is what the game looks like.

The first world, set inside a house, is actually not too bad.  Yes, the MS Paint graphics are embarrassing, the amusement level of the sound effects gets old fast, and the floaty jumping  I just fucking knew would be problematic later, but it was still kind of cute in a “oh, look at the three-legged kitten” kind of way.  And then I got to the suburb level, where the game took a turn for the worst.  The platforming started to rely heavily on leap-of-faith gameplay.  You know what I’m talking about.  It’s where you have to jump to a platform you can’t see, possibly into enemies that you can’t defend yourself against.  Some levels from that point on are completely centered around that concept.  You jump, wait for the platform to appear, see an enemy next to the ledge, hit the enemy, recoil hugely off it, and fall to your death.  Or even worse, you don’t die, fall to the ground, and have to walk all the way back to the start of the level to try again.  At this point, if I had a button in front of me that would have detonated the developer’s head, I can’t say I wouldn’t have pushed it.  Actually, I probably would have had someone else push it for me.  Never hurts to have a second set of fingerprints on head-popping buttons.

I’m not sure how a game gets made in this day and age with gameplay like this.  Did nobody play this far and tell the developer “you know, this is kind of just a series of dick moves that isn’t fun in the slightest bit?”  I’m guessing not.  It sucks that it falls to me to tell the developer that Cuddle Bear is just a series of dick moves that isn’t fun in the slightest bit.  At least the leap of faith stuff isn’t the only thing to complain about.  The graphics are shitty, but the game somehow still comes in at 241.5MB, necessitating an insulting 240 Microsoft Point price tag.  Truth be told, that’s probably a good thing.  It means nobody is likely to waste any time or money on this piece of shit.  The enemies end up being bullet sponges, it takes too long to upgrade guns, and the game is kind of too long and samey for what it has to offer.  I was getting bored with it long before I was getting angry at it.

Pictured: Cuddle Bear after he murdered fun itself.

Cuddle Bear isn’t the first title here that featured leap-of-faith platforming, but it will be the last one that I make any effort to finish.  If developers don’t want to put in any effort into their level designs, I’m not going to make any effort to play them.  I did excuse the first couple dozen instances of blind jumping in Cuddle Bear, but it became apparent during the second beach level that I was wasting my time.  Nothing good had come of the game by this point.  It was just getting worse and worse.  This kind of stuff worked in old school games where the enemies didn’t spawn until you reached the point they were meant to appear.  In this game, and many other XBLIGs for that matter, the enemies are just there, walking back and forth.  You can’t prevent them from being close enough to the ledge, and thus all platforming is left completely to chance.  I find it odd that the developer requested I review this game.  Maybe he wasn’t aware how bad it was.  Well, hopefully he knows now.  If not, I’m not sure how else to say it.  I could sing it.

Beneath the knees, hopefully nobody pees.

He’ll slurp and gag and gargle the sea.

Because that’s the day the Cuddle Bear sucked a big dick.

Cuddle Bear was developed by Happy Sock Entertainment

240 Microsoft Points read that the developer has Cuddle Bear 2 planned, says this is confirmation of the existence of evil in the making of this review.

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