Bayonetta 2 is an action game and the direct sequel to PlatinumGames's Bayonetta. Published and funded by Nintendo, the game released originally as a Wii U exclusive. In February 2018, a Nintendo Switch port was released.
Like its predecessor, Bayonetta 2 is a character-action game with a focus on intense combat. In the sequel, the combat has been nuanced with tighter controls and quicker responses from button inputs.
Many gameplay elements return, even allowing the player to begin the game with certain abilities and techniques that were learned in the first game. As the game goes on, the player will acquire new abilities and techniques that were not present in the first game at all (such as the serpent within).
Bayonetta 2 builds on the combat concepts of the original game with new features such as the Umbran Climax. This new move is tied to the magic gauge. When the gauge is filled, the Umbran Climax can be triggered by pressing the L button. While the Umbran Climax is in effect, Bayonetta's attacks will power up and she can also regain health by dealing damage.
Bayonetta 2 offers two basic control methods. The game can be played with traditional button controls, or via the use of the Wii U's GamePad touch screen. The touch screen controls are geared toward lower difficulty levels. In the Switch version, the touch controls are available in handheld mode.
Following the events of the first game, Jeanne is now Bayonetta's best friend, and comes to her aid in battle. However, her soul is taken by demons down into the realm of Inferno, and Bayonetta embarks on a mission to rescue her. Bayonetta's quest takes her to the realms of Paradiso and Inferno, pitting her in battle against a variety of angelic and demonic enemies.
In the Story Mode, the player progresses through the game chapter by chapter in a linear fashion, but is allowed to replay stages that have already been cleared to attempt better stage rankings. Along the way, Bayonetta can spend Halos at Rodin's shop to purchase new weapons, attacks, and costumes.
Bayonetta 2 features a cooperative online multiplayer mode (the Switch version also supports for local wireless play, requiring both players to have their own Switch and a copy of the game) for two players called Tag Climax. It can be played with friends, random players or the CPU. This mode also allows players to play as characters other than Bayonetta, including Jeanne and Rodin.
Tag Climax pits players in a series of challenges such as fighting hordes of enemies or boss characters. Players can wager halos against each other, and the more halos wagered, the more challenging the stage becomes. The higher the difficulty, the greater the rewards for completing the challenge.
Throughout the game, new weapons will become available to Bayonetta. Each weapon varies greatly from one another in both form and function. Just as it was before, within each of these weapons is the spirit of a demon who has been reduced to essence.
Weapons are acquired by finding fragments of golden LP's, or by buying them in Rodin's shop. Any owned weapon can also be upgraded for different uses.
- Love is Blue: A set of four, royal blue handguns. These act the same as Scarborough fair did in the first game, meaning that they are reliable, balanced, and have no particular strengths or weaknesses.
- Rakshasa: Wickedly curved blades that were made from a demon god. Quick, strong, combo-capable, and able to be wielded on either the hands or the feet, these make for a reliable melee weapon.
- Alruna: A pair of spiked whips that were made from the remains of a personal enemy of Bayonetta's. Their power is somewhat limited, but their reach, speed and swath are second to none.
- Kafka: There was once an insect who dreamed he was a man. That creature's soul was made into a bow and arrows that fired pure venom. Not much for strength, but the long range and mobility granted by this weapon makes Bayonetta almost untouchable
- Chernabog: A triple-bladed scythe that was made from souls harvested by the god of death. At the cost of speed, this weapon combines range and power to become a fearsome weapon.
- Undine: Twin batons with the powers of ice and fire, that can be equipped to the hands or feet. By performing a spin attack, the element of these weapons can be changed.
- Takemikazuchi: Nothing compares to this hammer's sheer power. Though slow and with limited combo potential, one swing will rain down the strength of the thunder god that it was made from.
- Salamandra: Made from the teeth of a fearsome dragon, these twin chainsaws are both powerful and quick, but with limited combo capabilities. When worn on the feet, they allow Bayonetta to slide around quickly.
- Chain Chomp: Something that Rodin found when he was visiting Kyoto, Japan. Unable to tame this creature, he quickly gave it to Bayonetta to make sure it was her problem instead. Only equippable to the feet, the chain chomp can be swung at other creatures for a vicious bite.
The game will ship with both Japanese and English voice tracks included in the digital and retail versions.
The physical release of Bayonetta 2 will include a Wii U port of the original Bayonetta as a bonus. This version of the original has been updated to include extra features such as costumes inspired by some of Hideki Kamiya's favorite Nintendo characters such as Link, Princess Peach, Princess Daisy and Samus Aran. In addition to changing certain game aesthetics and sound effects, each costume also features special alterations to Bayonetta's moves and abilities. For example, when equipped with the Samus costume, Bayonetta can enter morph ball form.
The costumes are also available for use in Bayonetta 2, in addition to a Bayonetta 2-exclusive costume themed after Star Fox protagonist Fox McCloud. When using the Fox McCloud costume, Arwings replace Bayonetta's gun-heels and feature a lock-on indicator similarly inspired by Star Fox.
In the Switch version, these costumes can be instantly unlocked by using the corresponding amiibo figure.
As digital purchases, Bayonetta and Bayonetta 2 will be available separately, but if bought together, a special discount will be applied to make their combined price equivalent to the physical release package.
Visually, Bayonetta's character design has changed, giving her a new outfit and shorter hairstyle. The producers stated that they rationalized this change in appearance as something Bayonetta would do; they see her as a woman that makes bold changes in her appearance, and hinted at the possibility that her appearance could change again in a potential future sequel down the road.
Special Edition (Wii U)
The Special Edition only available in Europe and Australia includes physical disc copies of both Bayonetta and Bayonetta 2 in a special cardboard packaging.
First Print Edition (Wii U)
The First Print Edition is available in Europe (not in Australia) in limited quantities of 15,300 copies. This edition also includes Bayonetta and Bayonetta 2 each in its own separate Wii U game case. Together they are packaged inside a faithful recreation of the Book of Angels with an embossed foldout-design.
Special Edition / Climax Edition (Switch)
For the Nintendo Switch release, Bayonetta 2 was available together again with the original Bayonetta in a Special Edition (PAL) or Climax Edition (Japan). This edition contains both games, a steelbook featuring key art from both games but represented with the respectively other game's version of Bayonetta. Additionally, it contains six Verse Cards and a set of stickers.
Notably, the copy of the original Bayonetta is only available via a download code in the Bayonetta 2 case in the PAL Special Edition whereas the Japanese Climax Edition does include Bayonetta in its own separate case on a game card.
All standard retail copies of Bayonetta 2 on Nintendo Switch (all regions) come with a download code for Bayonetta as well.