By Leo Stevenson
Oh my god. Did you hear? Bayonetta got a haircut. It’s like totally all that anyone is talking about. She cut it like all short and stuff. Oh shh here she comes... “Hey girl! Love the new do”... Oh my god, how is she even supposed to kill ANYTHING with her hair so short?
That brief exchange was brought to you exclusively by the vipers’ nest that is my mind. I apologise for revealing the man behind the curtain. I know it’s a frightening revelation, but let’s put it behind us and talk about Bayonetta 2, Platinum Games' other Wii U title. The one that may actually get Wii U consoles into people’s homes.
A follow-up to the 2010 original, Bayonetta 2 is set an undisclosed time after the events of the first game with the titular character sporting a funky new hair style. My hands on was very brief and consisted of a short – but insanely action packed – level set atop a fighter jet.
While I was initially sceptical of using the GamePad, Platinum has managed to make the oversized controller feel very natural. Despite the frenetic, over-the-top insanity the GamePad felt comfortable and natural. If the GamePad is not for you though, the Pro controller will do nicely. There’s even an amateur friendly touch control screen for those who want to be eased in as slowly and gently as possible.
Fans of the original will be very pleased to know that the signature style of Bayonetta is back (completely intact) in the sequel. Witch time, combos and Torture Attacks are all back, just as you remember and then some. Everything has been kicked up a notch and it’s like the game’s been supercharged. Flying though a city on the back of a fighter jet I was confronted by a horde of angelic enemies.
Acting like a tutorial, the game took me through the various moves, combos and powers I could use to take enemies out. Having been a long while since I’d played the original Bayonetta, a refresher was welcome. It wasn’t long though before I was destroying everything around me. When Bayonetta materialised a treadmill covered in spikes and drove the enemies into them, I knew Bayonetta 2 was going to be every bit as brutal and fun as the original. It’s an odd concern that a game being exclusive to Nintendo will mean that violence or content gets toned down. It’s a hangover from the SNES days of Mortal Kombat, but it’s no longer a concern. Bayonetta 2 is going to be exactly as out there in terms of adult content as you would expect.
There was so much going on in my brief hands on with Bayonetta 2 that it’s difficult to put it into words. The combat flowed quickly and brutally. I racked up combo after combo after combo, flitting around on the top of a moving fighter jet between enemies to attack them almost simultaneously. Activating Witch Time and causing unholy amounts of damage. Creating instruments of torture out of thin air to decimate bad guys and of course shooting the absolute shit out of everything that moved. It was a total rush.
If the hardcore gamers out there ever needed a reason to buy a Wii U, it’s Bayonetta 2. It’s the kind of game sorely needed for Nintendo’s console and will hopefully breathe some life into its sagging sales. While it didn’t do anything particularly interesting with the GamePad, the build I played was still early days and so something may be implemented before launch. Either way Bayonetta 2 is going to be one hell of a ride.
Bayonetta 2 will be available exclusively for Wii U in 2014.