I love bayonetta, not just love it... but LOVE it !
Not because I am one of those "I was there first so I must gush about it in ridiculous ways to show how awesome I am" but because those initial reviews of Bayonetta... famitsu's and Edge magazines perfect scores are completely spot on.
As a fighting game in the same vein as Devil may cry, god of war and Ninja gaiden it takes all of their best ideas and boils them down to the core, the game isn't about a bazillion upgrades or buying a million different moves (not to say there isn't any to buy) its about style, timing and memorization of devastating combos.
The tools given to you from the beginning are all you need, there is some extra weapons and charms with different effects but they are all just there to give the player a little more power when the game starts throwing a stream of bosses at you like they were regular enemies.
When you look at Bayonetta from just the demo or promotional videos you get the feeling that Platinum have just created a flashy oversexed version of Devil may cry but in reality they have crafted an action game that feels like a love letter to why japanese games used to be the ones western developers wished they could make.
It feels pretty hard skirting around why the game feels like that because I really don't want to ruin any of the surprises for people if they are going to play the game. At its core it is about the arena based fights and gaining medals for how well you did but I was not expecting there to be as many puzzle and platforming elements as there is. The game has a lot of shifting plane stuff like say ratchet and clank or mario galaxy and some basic use of slowing time to get past certain obstacles along with some vehicle sequences, one of which is a little too long and another a breathtaking "FUCK YEAH!" moment very near the end.
Bayonetta is weird, everything about it is so strange, the story, the cutscenes, its sense of humour. it feels a little like all the developers put their sexual fantasies up on a white board and then stared at them so long that what was once a joke became the outline for a new videogame. There is some really messed up sequences with angels touching theselves inappropriately and light bursting forth from them (this is a minor spoiler ) I felt a little dirty witnessing some of the naked-lady poledancer moves on screen... and there is a LOT of it.
I giggled a lot throughout the game and that seems intentional, nothing about the game is played straight, even the big emotional sequences seem like they have their tongue firmly in their cheek right next to a brightly coloured lollipop. (the games item of choice)
While I have said almost nothing of the content of the game because it is best witness first hand I can only really talk about the combat stuff which everyone can get their hands on by playing the demo, If that stuff is not your cup of tea then I doubt you could be persuaded that this really is one of the best games of it's type.. no... THE best... God of war III seems like more of the same , albeit more of the same of what is a very fun game but there is no way that game could even come close to Bayonetta, a fountain of creativity with everything amped up to maximum , it's apparent love for all things to do with videogames and mishmash of game mechanics make it quite hard to put into words why the game is one of the best games I have played in the last couple of years...
if it was a movie... it would be Crank 2
but with more magic.
and you can turn into a panther....
and a flock (?) of bats....