Bayonetta Panel Recap

Platinum Games staff members tell us a bit about the making of this upcoming action game.


Who Was There: Producer Yusuke Hashimoto and lead character designer Mari Shimazaki were in charge of this panel. Director Hideki Kamiya unfortunately could not make the show, but the team played a video where he urged everyone in the room to go play Bayonetta on the show floor.

What They Talked About: After making introductions and showing the room a Bayonetta trailer, Hashimoto-san gave us a high-level description of what Bayonetta is, saying that it was all about what he referred to as "climax scenes." One of the main focuses of the team was for them to make all of the action seem like something straight out of the climax of a blockbuster movie, hence some of the crazier things that happen, such as the summoning of demonic entities within Bayonetta's hair.

Shimazaki-san went on to describe the character of Bayonetta herself, saying that she was designed to be a really strong female figure--the type who goes it alone without backup and never gives up. When it came to actually designing the character, Shimazaki-san was guided by three unbreakable rules given to her by Kamiya-san: Bayonetta had to be a woman, she had to be a modern-day take on a witch, and she had to have four guns. It has often been pointed out that Bayonetta has unnaturally long arms and legs, but this was done on purpose to accentuate her grace and to give her a longer reach.

One interesting thing to note about the character of Bayonetta is that her design has remained just about the same from the very beginning. Though a couple of things have changed, such as the placement of her leg holsters and the removal of the red accents in her outfit, most of her design (including her hair style) hasn't changed. According to Hashimoto-san, hair is very important in the world of Bayonetta, because "the source of a witch's power comes from her hair." As for the hair attacks themselves, they came from the idea that they wanted to find a way of portraying a witch's magic in the modern world. The reason these attacks manifest as elaborate torture mechanisms is that Bayonetta herself is a bit of a sadist--she doesn't just want to kill her enemies; she wants to inflict great pain upon them as well.

Next up, the character of Jeanne, Bayonetta's rival, was discussed. Jeanne was designed from the beginning to mirror a lot of Bayonetta's traits and powers, because according to Kamiya-san, fighting someone with the same powers as you is cool. Shimazaki-san wasn't as restricted in designing Jeanne as she was with Bayonetta, and so she really wanted to give Jeanne her own unique style, which is what resulted in the red color scheme.

When asked about Bayonetta's enemies, the team said that the reason they went with angels as the antagonists was that they had created a very powerful character, and they wanted to give her something really tough to fight. Angels, it was decided, were a natural fit--after all, if angels can beat up on demons, wouldn't it be cool to see someone who could take on angels?

Best Audience Question: An audience member asked what other animals Bayonetta can transform into besides a cat. "Let's get this straight: she doesn't turn into a cat. She turns into a panther. There's a difference." Hashimoto-san went on to ask the audience what sorts of animals we thought a witch could turn into, and someone shouted, "A frog!"

Worst Audience Question: Two people asked about completely different games and were told that they should keep things on topic. Focus, people!

Random Quote: When asked about Bayonetta's glasses, Shimazaki-san said that "Kamiya-san likes girls with glasses." There was quite a bit of applause from the audience for this one.

The Takeaway: Bayonetta is one crazy, over-the-top action game, and we got the distinct feeling during this panel that we haven't seen anything yet. While the Platinum Games staff didn't open up too much about story elements, we did get a few nice tidbits here and there, and we're definitely going to be keeping an eye out for this one.

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