Bayonetta 2: Back & Better than Ever
Written by: J.H. Longman
Even now, two weeks into relentless playing of Bayonetta 2, I am at a loss as to where I should even begin with my review, the game is insane! So I guess I’ll just start with Bayonetta and take it from there. Cereza, aka Bayonetta, is back and she is sporting a new look and I don’t just mean she’s wearing Princess Peach’s and Daisy’s dress, but she’s cut her hair and looks more like a librarian than a Witch, change from a nun I guess. But don’t worry, she is still the long legged, “I should be a member of LMFAO because I’m sexy and I know it,” all woman heroine, gamers know and love and yes, she still walks like a model, pounding the catwalk and still talks like a dominatrix you can expect to find in the likes of Soho, forcing you down on hands and knees, making you pounce around like a hapless pup as she cracks her whip.
You probably got that image stuck in your head now, so best move it on to the game itself, the game so full of magical realism, stunning architectural backgrounds that the sheer detail is staggering and compared to Bayonetta, where that was darker, we get to see a whole range of colours to this one and plenty of new changes, such as cleaner displays, smoother gaming mechanics, Witch Time which is a lot easier to achieve, unless you’re playing as Jeanne. Oh and even just the fighting is great on this, whips on the end of your arms, with the option of Undine on your feet, icing or acting as a flame thrower and let’s not forget the chainsaws because you can literally skate round the level, jump up and chainsaw kick an Angel straight in its face and if weakened enough, cut it in half, with blood just coming out. Now if you think that’s fun, hahaha, the torture sequences are much better, such as sticking a centurion Angel on a gigantic treadmill with a deadly apparatus behind and Sparta kicking him into it.
Then there’s the colourful language to it, done with such timing that each f-bomb isn’t just another in a long line of f-bombs, like we often see in a lot of teen movies, but swearing done the right way, the English way as Loki proves time and time again with his “pure English” mannerisms. Every time I hear him say “drink,” I get that special tingly feeling, but onwards with the game, so prologue begin. Luka returns from game one to give us a lesson on the Eyes of Aesir, the Right eye of Light & Left eye of Darkness. Now I could tell you more about what he was saying, but the immediate close up shot of Bayonetta with her legs open proved distraction and it was the same with her mother, Rosa, who we get to see a lot more of (not in that way you perverts, I just meant “mummy” returns later on in the game, during cinematic scenes and in later levels. And because that’s still not enough, she can also be unlocked as a story mode playable character, by completing 3rd climax on every story mode level. Oh and if you want to see more of Bayonetta, you can purchase plenty of short skirted, costumes from Rodin, over at the Gates of Hell, for those extra close, close-ups. There really is no doubt about it, intense fighting aside, this is a very sexually charged game, its no wonder so many of us like it). But yeah Rodin’s back and yes he is still the hardest boss to fight in the entire game, but the weapon is awesome and that is not until like way later in the game, 9,999,999 saved up halos to be exact. Or as a “you just got lucky because he’s now challenging you in tax climax, so for the love of God…” scrap that, “…for the love of Aesir, whatever you do, do not wage extra halos,” the fight will be hard enough, unless you’re like me or Barney Stinson. “Challenge accepted.”
So after the close ups, mummy and daughter find themselves battling against those grotesque, golden villains known as Angels and when the final fight has been won, why we’re graced with a skipable cinematic where Bayonetta is fighting the main villain from the last game, Balder the Lumen Sage, aka Daddy and it gets a lot better because we get to see a lot more of him as he dons Jeanne’s role from the previous game as our constant adversary, challenging us to full on battles, which can be so distracting, such as having your summoned Infernal beast, battling one of his more angelic summoning that you spend more time watching them slug it out, taking in the scenery, as Balder deals some devastating damage, as Mad-Eye Moody from the Harry Potter series said, a lot, “Constant vigilance!” is a must. It isn’t just his fights that are so engaging, in fact all of them are, especially the boss battles, surfing your way to Paradiso, entering the Kingdom of Heaven itself as you strive to save Little One.
Come the end of the cinematic, feel free to fist pump the air because that’s the prologue complete, time to get on with story mode, so get ready to expect cinematic after cinematic and then prepare to fight a horde of Angels, atop of a jet fighter, then on a plane. Then teaming up with Jeanne to fight two-on-one against a bigger Angel before lastly summoning Gomorrah (think Godzilla but much more demonic and bigger, oh and think King Kong too, because he does climb a tower building) but just as soon as he is done devouring the Angel, he sets his sights on you, only to have Jeanne save you instead and wind up with her soul going down below, a very bad day in my book, if you ask me. But Gomorrazilla is being a bad pet, time to discipline it, so break those wings out and start firing. Once Gomorrah has been defeated, cue another cut-screen, set in the Gates of Hell (Rodin’s bar, not the actual place that comes later). Turns out, Jeanne’s situation is pretty dire and going down to Inferno to save her is Bayonetta’s priority and with that, Chapter 1 is complete.
Now with the level over, it’s time to be rated on your progress, scoring a medal between stone to platinum, based on damage taken, time it took you to complete the level and combo, the results are then tallied together and you will receive a character trophy based on how well or bad you did and naturally Bayonetta is the platinum medal. You are also rated on each individual fight you engage in during the Chapters, on the same combo, time, damage, parameters, but every time I see the rating system in action, I can’t help but remember the days back on when I had a PS2, playing colosseum mode on Dino Crisis 2, one of my favourite games ever and DC2 isn’t the only game Bayonetta 2 reminds me of, what with fighting flow and mechanics of both Devil May Cry and even Hyrule Warriors, but that isn’t it’s only Zelda connection, what with actually being able to don the Hero’s tunic and with the salamandra equipped, you’re actually able to use the Master Sword, it’s always fun to use the Evil’s Bane to slay some demons, which is something Link has done. Then there’s also the fact that Link collects heart pieces to form a new heart container and Bayonetta has to collect for broken witch hearts to form a new one. Lastly, the other gaming series Bayonetta 2 gives me déjà vu of, Final Fantasy itself, purely because of the amazing settings, the fights, the fighting methods and use of magic.This is truly a great game that although it bears strong qualities of other games, doesn’t feel like a rip off whatsoever and takes all those great qualities the games share and giving them Bayonetta’s own flourished twist on it. With that, time for a quick list of Pros & Cons:
-Flowing fight sequences
-So many combos to be used and abused with the range of weapons
-A wide range of costumes and weapons for variety
-The large scaled boss battles
-Stunning cinematics, which there is a skip function too
-A thrilling gaming experience to be had and a game difficulty mode for all
-Plenty of collectables, thus ensuring more replay value
-Other than once, where you are running away from a large, pissed off Angel, you never get to play Loki again and you don’t even get to use his cards.
-Being as the game is entitled Bayonetta 2 and has both Bayonetta & Jeanne on the cover, Nintendo and Saga really could have implemented a two-player function for story mode, such as the levels where you and Loki, or Rosa, are fighting together. Very easily a second player could play as the other character and I mean 2nd player as in, sitting on the couch next to you, as opposed to half way round the world like in climax mode. Online multiplayer is great and clearly is the direction Nintendo is going in, but sometimes, it is just really great to be playing alongside a cherished friend, or annoying partner who keeps moaning you spend more time playing videogames than doing things with them.
-Not enough “Little One” & “Love”
-No Zero suit Samus costume? When in the default uniform, or the “Witch with no Memories” costume (Bayonetta’s look from the first game, including the long hair), when attacking, the “hair constructed” uniform becomes less and less, the Metroid suit could have worked hand in hand with the Zero suit in this way.
This game has a great hold on me and really made me glad that I did pick this one out of a list of games I could have chosen and in light of everything stated above, there is only one clear choice for its rating, a solid 9.1/10.0 because it really is an energetic, fast paced, constantly moving game, even when you’re just “runway model, cat-walking” your way around the detailed, beautiful architecture settings, shooting up random barrels. So close to knocking Hyrule Warriors off its top spot, but not close enough, maybe if you stuck with your old look and not just had it as a costume you could purchase, well maybe things would be different, but hey, second place isn’t bad, the silver Luka medal goes to you Bayonetta 2 and I honestly hope they make a third one. It would be so insane I’d need to be institutionalised after playing it.
So while I leave you to ponder all of that, I’m off to kill some more Angels. Kick a couple of Demons in the face with my chainsaw boots all and see just how the Aesir likes it when I dominate him with my Master sword.
Till next time folks.