With PAX West coming to a close and no Rockstar presence even at Gamescom, many hopeful Bully fans were left dashed by the studio's utter silence. With leaks galore, the prospects of a Bully 2 don't even seem speculatory, it's more in the line of 99% confirmed happening, yet still no word on the title's potential development behind the doors of Rockstar and Take-Two Interactive. As always, silence has tended to be their strong suit, but it's about time they let the potential game see the light of day.
By no word, we mean literally Rockstar hasn't said a single word, whether they are or are not making the game, which is rather frustrating for gamers, especially when media outlets, such as Polygon, reveal their own leaks were mere pranks. With an overriding fandom, one that has waited patiently for 13 years, gaining in both annoyance and high levels of excitement, leaks are the only forms of potential with weight that keep them preoccupied as time drags on.
We just want our slingshots back!
New ALLEGED Bully 2 gameplay screenshot.— SWEGTA (@SWEGTA) August 30, 2019
I did my best to make the image less crooked, blurry, and overexposed, but there's only so much I can do.
What are your thoughts?#Bully2 #Bully #CanisCanemEdit #RockstarGames pic.twitter.com/4DsLdtTOCh
The Signs Are There In GTA
Add all of this to the fact that years of Rockstar games have alluded to a Bully sequel in the form of easter eggs and character likenesses, it's safe to assume the title will appear, it's simply a matter of when. The most recent in-game Bully 2 hint appeared in Grand Theft Auto V's casino update, which showcased a drawing of Bullworth Academy's coat of arms. Though it's not very explicit, it does lend credence to the Bully 2 hype, which will only be a catalyst for Rockstar's downfall if the sequel never reaches shelves.
In addition to easter eggs, the leaks coming out on both Reddit and Twitter are innumerable. Below is an image posted relatively recently that may or may not be a direct image of the title's in-game map. Only a few days ago has gameplay leaked as well, courtesy of Reddit user felipeborges388. Well in the past, Rockstar tended to have a vice grip on internal game productions. Nowadays, with social media running the world, it's darn near impossible to have such a hold with so many employees and insiders, added to the fact that many of these leaks may not even be real in the first place.
Easter eggs and Reddit leaks only add more and more hope to a fandom that simply wants to get back in the classroom. The excitement, as so evidenced by the multitudes of Bully fans desperate for a sequel only makes it more confusing as to why Rockstar has remained so quiet while still winking at the possibilities in its other games. If you're going to tease us, at least give us a hint as to whether or whenever it's actually going to arrive, especially when you take into account other anticipated titles, like the long-forgotten Agent, or Midnight Club and L.A. Noire sequels, that never came to fruition.
Are we all headed for disappointment? Many of the social media-specific gaming insiders, like SWEGTA and Legacy Killah seem to believe that at least some of these leaks are false, and if not they still remain highly skeptical when it comes to Reddit leaks in general. If Rockstar wants to steady a potential fallout, that is if and when no Bully 2 appears, they'd be wise to speak out now, rather than later. Announcing a Bully 2 game in the midst of a swirling mass of leaks only tarnishes the potential release date. It's one of those simple shrugs we make. Fans will just say, "Yeah, okay, we knew about this ages ago..." and there go the hype and enthusiasm.
Even A Short Trailer Is Fine
The hype for Grand Theft Auto V began, for me at least, in 2009 when leaks and pictures began circulating and the craze became ecstatic, almost religious. That first trailer, released November 2011, propelled me into the game; it made me feel like I was playing it, even though it wouldn't come out until late 2013. All Rockstar has to do, for the sake of the many Bully fans out there, is release a trailer. It doesn't need to be too long or revealing, but that initial teaser, especially when dropped at random without any prior detailing, is a mind-explosive hype extravaganza. They wouldn't need any other forms of an announcement, it would merely give fans that added sense of security and relinquish their hope to plain old anticipation, which is what Bully 2 needs right now.
Whether they're too busy with GTA and Red Dead Online, or simply biding time for their game's hype to grow, Rockstar will eventually hold that open house at Bullworth, but until then keep annotating those notes and handing your homework in on time. Soon enough we'll all be reenrolled, aiming this time for that seal of approval, that document that will finally give us necessity: the scholarship of bullying.
On that inevitable day, I'll see you all on campus.