Despite recent reports that Bully 2 could soon be a reality, some new details have come to light detailing what happened to the sequel to Rockstar’s hit PlayStation 2 title. Prior to The Game Awards 2021, a reputable source claimed that the game would be making some sort of appearance during the event, though nothing ever came to fruition. Now, Game Informer has posted details gained from a new interview with five former Rockstar New England devs and one from the NYC headquarters about what happened to Bully 2, and what to potentially expect going forward.
Rockstar Games acquired Mad Doc Software in 2008 and renamed the company Rockstar New England, and to prove that this new studio had the ability to work with the big dogs, they took on the ambitious Bully 2 project. At the time, Rockstar was transitioning to a time of big box releases like Grand Theft Auto 5 and Red Dead. Compared to the first game, the sequel would be bigger and better in every way, with three developers in this new interview claiming that the title would have been three times the size of the original Bully. Players would be able to break into houses, which resulted in an in-depth glass breaking mechanic now seen in Max Payne 3. At one point, between 50 to 70 members of the Rockstar staff were working on Bully 2.
When the game was shelved, it had six-to-eight hours of playable content, along with completed terrain, working missions, NPCs, and more. However, one developer states that although so much was completed, the project would have needed two or three more years until completed. When asked about workplace conditions, the report states “While most developers speak fondly and excitedly about their work on Bully 2, when talking about projects such as Max Payne 3 and Red Dead Redemption, their tone turns dour.” One developer mentions crunch, saying When it came time for you to leave, it was a lot of just trying to get out without being harassed on the way out of the door.”
None of the developers offered information regarding the future of Bully 2.