Developer: Platinum Games
by: Nicholas Puleo
Action games have been refined time and time again since the era of Sony PlayStation titles like Devil May Cry and Legacy of Kain. Blending fast paced beat em up game play with giant weapons, guns, and over the top style not only are a visual treat to watch, but empowers players into feeling superhuman. Most of these Eastern inspired titles feel cheesy to us in North America, either by some incredibly horrible dialog, insane character outfits, and situations that make us squirm in our seats. Bayonetta takes everything from these previous inspirations and refines it with some of the best combat ever seen in an action game, the most over the top dialog you've ever witnessed, and situations that make you squirm as much as giggle.
I can imagine the concept pitch now, "You see... Bayonetta is a witch where her clothes are made of her own hair. The better the player does, the more of her hair is used for attacks, and the less she wears." It's on this concept that the ridiculousness starts in Bayonetta, who is the tall and sexy heroine of our story. She comes from a group that keeps the world in balance between good and evil, and in a unique twist on traditional prose, what most would consider "the good guys" are actually the enemies in the game. You literally battle angels and various creatures of Heaven's army as you unlock the mystery of your past. These creature designs are nothing short of amazing, it's as if Tim Burton and HR Geiger had a love child birthed straight into holy water.
Along the way you'll battle these creatures with various weapons that are both upgradable and unlockable. Your guns, which are also attached to your knee high boots, while weak at first help keep combos rolling in between flip kicks, sword swipes, and break dancing moves. Our dark haired vixen is as deadly as she is sexy, and she's not afraid to strut her stuff. Sexual innuendos fill dialog, suggestive poses that end special moves, and the games healing and magic items come in the form of lollipops. All of these things add to the campy, almost B movie feel of the game.
It's hard to find fault in Bayonetta, perhaps it's a little too forgiving at times, perhaps it tries to do a little too much. The bottom line with Bayonetta is fun and refined action. If you can look past the cheesy dialog and sexual undertones, there's a seriously solid game here that any action fan needs to play.