#901 Bayonetta

Posted: 10th December 2010 by Jeroen in Games
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7th game played so far

Genre: Action Game
Platform: Playstation 3, XBOX 360
Year of Release: 2009
Developer: Platinum Games (XBOX 360), Nex Entertainment (PS3, port)
Publisher: Sega

Another callback to a previous game, with the developers of this game coming from Capcom, developers of Viewtiful Joe. It shows in style and game play, with this game being as cinematic as the former. It also includes more fan service than the former, and quite a different storyline.

Basically, you’re a witch, the last surviving one, more or less, and you have to find rather non-angelic angels to stop the heavens from becoming too powerful. Sorry mum. The controversy seems obvious, but we will not let that distract us from the game itself.

The witch – creatively called Bayonetta – fights her way through using swords, guns, and demons summoned from her own hair – hair that also forms her costume, so we can only assume the average player tries to summon these as often as possible. We will leave it as an exercise for the reader to understand why we’re not as affected.

Our playthrough

Five hours of fighting action goodness, with frequent repeats, although many of these work quite well compared to the average ‘redo the level from scratch’ continues. One of us got addicted, the other loves watching but also has time to actually write about the game.

Our Thoughts

Right, now that I’ve finally dragged you away from the 360… I guess you think the game isn’t too bad then? You dragged me away for this!? I was about to disembowel an angelic manta ray… thing! Well, we have about 994 more games to play and you’ve been playing for a while, for good reason.

I could tell earlier you’ve lost sleep because of it. Well I’ve sort of been having dreams about having some of Bayonetta’s powers… it’s just way too immersive in that respect. Yeah, it is, even when you’re waiting for the next level to load.


The loading screens are a little bit of a hindrance, but in them you are free to practice any combo and (if anything) it makes a nice change from being spoon fed like you get in games like Assassin’s Creed. The fact that the first thing you get to do in the game is test drive it on opponents without any chance of dying is a great introduction.

And the introduction sequence certainly makes you wonder what’s going on; one big battle. The same goes with a lot of the cinematics. I am in LOVE with the creatures they have created to fight they are angelic enough to fit and are the right mix of scary, creepy and holy. Yeah, angelic, but weird enough to be credible as enemies, with unsuitable names like Harmony and Grace.

One thing about this game (which is a link back to Viewtiful Joe) is that there is a lot of restarting. There are battles that are brutally relentless. They are, and some take some practice. Yet it bothered me less than it did in Viewtiful Joe, in part because you always jump back only to the start of the battle or halfway through in some boss fights. Itโ€™s a credit to the people who were involved in the overall fight design, there is enough variation that a second or even a sixth go can still be incredibly enjoyable. It took me 5 attempts to clear a boss and I was still having fun ripping its dragon heads off.

Yeah, and it is rarely tough enough that you get the feeling it’s impossible unlike Viewtiful Joe where I was ready to through the Gamecube remote into moving traffic. I agree with that sentiment.

Some of the bosses are about the size of Birmingham… it’s amazing she makes a dent in them at all let alone manipulating her hair into the shape of a crow which then devours them. Again this is greatly helped by the mid-boss battle save points a fantastic little addition that is missing from so many other games out there which doesn’t detract from the overall difficulty in any way.

It keeps the focus on the fun parts – getting past the next bit – instead of on the boring parts – defeating the same enemy twenty times over because of the boss fight afterwards (by fun bit’s we mean the torture attacks. Gloriously gory especially when you chainsaw something in half.) Which says a lot in this game, considering the massive amounts of gore, chainsaws, iron maidens, you see all sorts of things. Further enhanced by the ‘climax’ moves you use to finish off bosses.

Can I get back to playing now?

Just one more thing of note here, the music; completely inappropriate and yet fits in perfectly (even if one of them is a JPop remix of ‘Favourite Things’ from The Sound of Music) It works. It sounds strange, but it works.

All I can say is… glory be to Bayonetta. One great game, an example of how games have improved over the past decade.

Final Thoughts

I know this is only the 7th game in but… I can not see that a game is going to top this for a while, especially in the action genre. It’s completely immersive, has a great back story and mythology plus some of the best use of gore that I have ever seen. True the British accent is a tad… weird but it all adds to the atmosphere.

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