Bayonetta has developed a name for itself over the past few years since its initial release in Japan in 2009 and America in 2010. A brain child of Hideki Kamiya, best known for his director’s role in the Devil May Cry series, Bayonetta seems to be a unique third person action game that places “sensuality” at the core of its identity. Bayonetta centers around emphasizing the titular character’s sultry nature through mannerisms, appearance, camera angles during cut scenes, and even the way she engages in combat. The game itself centers around Bayonetta, a shape-shifting gun-slinging witch, and her struggle to recover her lost identity. While the story itself has often been criticized, the gameplay is what really has gained Bayonetta its popularity.
The gameplay centers around executing combinations that incorporate both melee and long-range attacks and timing to unleash hidden abilities, such as “witch time”, “torture attacks”, and other quicktime events. I did find the quicktime events to be a little challenging to time as it seemed to be a little inconsistent and difficult to gauge, which is a common criticism of the game. There is also a variety of weapons and shape-shifting abilities that can be unlocked. The game features a rating system, which encourages multiple playthroughs to attain high scores.
It is well known by now that Bayonetta has just been ported for PC, which is what I intend to focus on for the remainder of the review. This game unfortunately seems to follow the trend of other popularly ported games in that the quality control is just not there. Despite the game’s graphics not being updated, there seems to be issues in the frame rate of cutscenes and at times even into gameplay. This really damages the gameplay experience because the story often comes in staggering, out-of-sync chunks, which is emphasized by the audio not being affected at all. There is also quite a few clipping textures that give the game a sloppy appearance, which I’m sure is quite frustrating to long-time fans who understand how important appearances are in this particular game. These issues do not cross over too often into the actual gameplay, but it is still quite frustrating with how often they appear. It is in dire need of having a quality control team clean up all the bugs, which hopefully will be done through updates.
In the meantime, Bayonetta is still the same sensual, action-packed game it was seven or eight years ago. However, if you are a fan of the game or want to experience playing as the badass Bayonetta, I would stick to playing it on your console.
Here is the Bayonetta Launch Trailer:
Bayonetta is now available on Steam and follows Typing of the Dead, Valkyria Chronicles and the SEGA Mega Drive Collection which SEGA has successfully converted for Steam.