If it is true that ‘the path of excess leads to the palace of wisdom’, which William Blake said, ‘Bayonetta 3’ has built a seven-story palace and lapis lazuli-encrusted ivory escalators. Because we can’t think of anything more over the top than this third installment of the adventures of the Platinum witch, with a melancholic tone and certain airs of closing a cycle.
‘Bayonetta 3’ is absolutely dependent on previous deliveries. In fact, its argument is a real gibberish that we are not going to bother to unravel, because it is doubtful that even knowing the first two parts it makes any sense (yes, it works independently and delves into the very fashionable topic of the multiverses). But to ‘Bayonetta 3’ it is better to arrive already seasoned from previous hours controlling the witch, because this new installment only bothers to provide a small tutorial with the great novelty in the game’s mechanics: the invocations of kaijus.
The game allows you to combine between three possible giant monsters from a wide catalog of monsters: grabs, kicks, punches and special blows will happen in the background (that is, if it is not Bayonetta herself who turns into a colossus) while our witch dances to keep the demon standing. It is the main change of mechanics in the game, along with the inclusion of a new female to the protagonists, Viola.
Viola introduces a subtle difference to Bayonetta’s mechanics when we control her: as we know, the dodge with the protagonist witch launches us into precious seconds of Witch Time where everything slows down. In the case of Viola, it will happen with the parrys at the right time, which gives some oxygen compared to the button mashing typical of Bayonetta’s parts (to be exact, it replaces it with another form of button mashing). Viola will also take us to some nice 2D phases like ‘Rolling Thunder’ or ‘Elevator Action’.
More of the same (as it should be)
All of this runs on esemi-open scenarios that include downright fun and challenging parts of exploration and side quests to find objects that will enhance our powers. ‘Bayonetta 3’, in short, has made an effort to expand and improve the proposal of the first games, especially the second, which at times gave the impression of settling for being a mere extension of the original.
And that has been achieved by respecting but, at the same time, fine-tuning the very polished mechanics of the original game, which have not worn out in the slightest in 13 years of life. ‘Bayonetta 3’ finds a way to nuance them and provide new ideas: in this case, for example, is how the theme of the Slave Demons changes the rhythm of the game, which are invoked (and uninvoked) by pressing the left trigger, which leaves Bayonetta unprotected for the duration of the demon bar. A capital power, which, however, has many nuances.
For example, if Bayonetta takes damage during the summon, the summon is cancelled. And if the rage meter reaches the maximum, our demon will turn against us. Details like the ability to queue the daemon while it executes hits they are a good test of the extent to which Platinum knows that he has a superb combat system on his hands (on par with, or even superior to, those of classics like ‘Devil May Cry’ or ‘Ninja Gaiden’), but that can be fine-tuned to Infinity.
That is the magic of excess that ‘Bayonetta 3’ champions and that we highlighted at the start of this text: you can always go further. And they know that in Platinum: the aesthetics can be more churrigueresque, the weapons more convoluted (by the way, the groups of weapons are a great idea… and that of handling a locomotive as if it were a mechanical saw) and the Seemingly unbeatable combat. But you always have to aspire to more. Another stairway to heaven in the palace of wisdom.