Rockstar renews trademark for Bully… but what does it mean?

rockstarlogoIt looks like yet another long-dormant series has been given a chance at new life thanks to a recent trademark application. Rockstar Games has followed up last week’s filing for Agent with another application, this time for Bully, with the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Bully was originally released for the PS2 in 2006 (it was also ported to the Xbox 360, Wii, and PC in 2008) and generated controversy for some of its content. In addition to teen-on-teen violence, the game was criticized by some conservative pundits because the main character was able to enter into a same-sex relationship with another boy. In spite of, or perhaps because of, these controversies, Bully has gained a sizable cult following.

This new trademark filing doesn’t guarantee that Bully 2 is in the works, but you can count Rockstar co-founder among its fans. In 2011, he told Gamasutra, “[W]e knew that we didn’t want to start doing the Bully sequel instantly at that second with those guys — even though it is a property that, like Max, we adore and might come back to in the future.”

Rockstar’s Vancouver team was the original developer behind Bully, but they have since merged with Rockstar Toronto. The Canadian team is currently hiring for an unannounced next-generation project, so perhaps this is more than just a routine trademark extension…

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John Scalzo is Warp Zoned's Editor-In-Chief and resident retro gaming expert. You can follow him on Twitter or email him at john AT warpzoned DOT com.

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