Nintendo has just concluded today’s Nintendo Direct presentation, focusing completely on their upcoming Wii U exclusive Bayonetta 2. Aside from reiterating what we’ve already been told, like including the original Bayonetta as part of the purchase, today’s Direct presentation was full of new information that’s bound to make the wait for October 24th even harder.
Bayonetta is a very fast-paced, stylish action game that may be a tad intimidating for newcomers. As the original never reached the Nintendo audience, it’s expected that Bayonetta 2 will be the first experience for a lot of Wii U owners. To make the game accessible for all ages (pending the gratuitous sexual innuendos and fanservice moments), a new gameplay mode is being added, called Automatic.
Automatic Mode will allow you to complete more difficult combos by simply mashing the attack buttons, rather than worrying about perfect timing and the intricacies that made the game so popular to begin with. It’s a great way for newcomers to get their feet wet, or just enjoy the game for its story. You can also play Automatic Mode off-screen using the GamePad, controlling Bayonetta’s movements and attacks by swiping the touchscreen with your stylus pen.
Also new to Bayonetta 2 is the Umbran Climax ability. As Bayonetta kills her enemies, she’ll fill up her magic gauge which can be used for torture attacks. These attacks are the same as they were in the original Bayonetta, dealing a large amount of damage to a single enemy in a sadistic fashion. If you find yourself surrounded, you can use your magic gauge on Umbran Climax instead. This will drain your magic gauge while granting the ability to summon large demonic arms that attack in unison with Bayonetta herself, essentially causing her attacks to deal damage to multiple targets at once. In short, torture attacks are ideal against a single enemy, while Umbran Climax is best suited against larger groups.
Also new to Bayonetta 2 is the ability to dodge offset, which allows her to dodge an attack while in the middle of a combo, and segue back in to the combo immediately afterwards. According to a member of the Nintendo Treehouse group, you can use the dodge offset ability as many times as you’d like, effectively continuing on with an extensive combo all while avoiding damage from numerous enemies at once. It’s pretty safe to say that failing to dodge an attack will cancel out your combo, so perfecting the dodge offset will be key to completing the game at higher difficulties.
Not only will Bayonetta 2 feature plenty of high-speed, technical combat on the ground, but she’ll also take the battle to the skies, underwater, and even feature segments of vehicular combat. Some of these segments seemed similar to the original game’s ‘Space Harrier‘ level, although there was a brief glimpse at some rather impressive mech-suit combat, as well as Bayonetta dishing out punishment from the back of a fiery warhorse.
As expected, Bayonetta 2 will feature a new array of weapons, but what’s new to the series is the ability to equip your weapons to either her hands or feet. Depending on which way you go, your combos and attacks will be completely different. You can also buy duplicates of your weapons in Rodin’s shop if you’d like to use the same weapon both ways.
New weapons include a massive hammer, a whip, a bow that deals poisonous damage over time, a faster multi-bladed weapon, and two fiery maces that incinerate foes if you prefer your meat extra crispy. I got jokes! To add a bit more depth to the game’s already advanced combat system, players can also save two weapon sets and switch between them seamlessly during combat.
Adding a bit of replay value to the campaign, certain levels will feature secret side-rooms called Muspelheim that will teleport Bayonetta to another realm and task her with completing specific objectives with strict rule sets. Think of them as challenge rooms, rewarding you for completing objectives like killing all enemies under a certain time limit, taking zero damage, or defeating a powerful enemy without dropping your combo.
Moving along to the costumes, it’s already been revealed that you can dress Bayonetta up as a few different Nintendo characters in the original game, but today it was confirmed that you can use the costumes in Bayonetta 2 as well. Not only are costumes aesthetically pleasing, especially for you pervs interested in seeing up Daisy or Peach’s skirt (as was shown multiple times during the presentation), but they also change the game up a little bit.
For instance, using the Link costume causes enemies to drop rupees instead of halos, hide treasure chests inside of the levels, and play familiar tunes as you discover new items. Using the Princess Peach costume will summon the massive hands and feet of Bowser to strike down enemies, instead of the usual hair monsters. I’m not sure if the Princess Daisy costume provides the same aesthetics as Peach, so we’ll just have to wait and see. Bayonetta can also dress up like our favorite bounty hunter Samus Aran, allowing her to use the Morph Ball ability.
As another surprise during today’s Nintendo Direct, it was revealed that Bayonetta can also use a Fox McCloud costume, changing her guns to mini Arwings, and adding a Star Fox-style aiming reticle on to the screen. Bayonetta was also shown wearing a traditional Chinese dress, although I’m not quite sure if there are any added benefits to doing so.
The titular Bayonetta and her BFF Jeanne have already been confirmed as playable characters, but Platinum Games revealed today that the shopkeep, Rodin, will also be playable. Judging by his gameplay in the presentation, he seems to play very similar to Devil May Cry‘s Dante using the Eryx gauntlets, or God of War‘s Kratos using the Gauntlet of Zeus; using slower, but more powerful punches that can be charged for additional damage. He also doesn’t have the luxury of Witch Time during perfect dodges, which can potentially make him slightly more difficult to play.
If you like to get down with a bit of bro-op action, Bayonetta 2 will feature a brand new mode called Tag Climax, allowing you and a friend to team up online to battle waves of enemies across 6 different levels. You can also choose to wager halos to increase the difficulty, at the risk of a higher reward should you manage to survive. Players can choose between Bayonetta, Jeanne, and Rodin in this mode, and can customize their costumes as well. As an added bonus, all halos earned in Tag Climax will be available for you to use in your own campaign, making it easier to purchase the plethora of new costumes, weapons, and assist items.
Sadly, there was no mention of Tag Climax mode being available offline, although I sincerely hope it’s present and accounted for as it’s a perfect fit for off-screen co-op using the GamePad and your television.
Overall this was yet another fantastic Nintendo Direct presentation, and gave us all a ton of new information on the upcoming Wii U exclusive. I was already excited for Bayonetta 2, but now October 24th can’t come soon enough.
Bradley Keene is the Executive Editor here at What’s Your Tag?, generally handling reviews, public relations, and our social media communications. He’s an aspiring video game journalist, Baltimore native, and on again/off again WoW player that favors roguelikes, horror games, and point-and-click adventures. His favorite console is the Dreamcast, favorite game is the original Metroid, and he could watch The Goonies for the rest of his life. Contact him by e-mail at the address above, or follow his insanity on Twitter.