Bayonetta Review

Bayonetta's climactic battle

The seeker will find, the one who waits will wait – even if they have to wait for a very long time. How long has it been? Eight years? “Bayonetta” has been raised to the top, forgotten, remembered again, crowned with a sequel, and forgotten once more during that time. Console players have long played the famous “Devil May Cry in high heels,” but for the PC audience, this story is just beginning. Yes, we are late for the celebration of the slasher life, but we received, as often happens, the best version of all.

In honor of this, it wouldn’t hurt to take a small excursion into history. Below is a retrospective look at how Bayonetta won the love of the gaming audience in its time and what still captivates it to this day. If you are only interested in the nuances of this belated port, You can go straight to the point..

The witch’s service of chopping

At the threshold of getting to know Bayonetta, it is important to understand one thing: this is a Japanese game, where “Japanese” means “don’t ask what’s going on.” Unlike most relatives, it does not try to conform to European standards, does not limit itself in means of expression, and does not worry about being understood – it simply lets loose in every way possible.

There is a somewhat coherent introduction about the witch Bayonetta, her murky past, and her struggle against angelic creatures, but it is desirable to understand and accept that this is just a starting point for subsequent fireworks of madness. Striving as far away from common sense as possible, the authors’ imagination pours into unrestrained action, where the heroine rides a motorcycle in multiple dimensions, shoots with her legs, and collects various monsters from her hair, inevitably exposing herself during the ritual. Why? Well, why not!

It is thanks to the absurdity of the action that Bayonetta possesses boundless energy. She throws together everything associated with excitement and coolness, gradually escalating from modest fights in back alleys to interplanetary battles in the style of “Gurren Lagann,” and literally every scene is accompanied by powerful discharge. The satisfaction the game brings is not from a well-thought-out world and narrative, but from the opportunity to throw a tram at a dragon and charge it with an icy skate to the mouth – because for such simple joys, we slashers and respect.

Chainsaw-wielding action

It is especially pleasant that this energy here is combined with a diverse combat system. An impressive move list, a huge selection of weapons, and brutal finishers using sophisticated torture mechanisms allow you to experiment throughout the game and constantly complement your style with new techniques. The entire gameplay fits within the confines of the controller, but with enough effort, it extends far beyond its limits.

Moreover, soon after the start of Bayonetta, even on the medium difficulty level, it turns into an unexpectedly tough challenge that requires constantly honing your own skills to overcome. If the first levels are passed by mindlessly defeating rare enemies, a little later, without a coherent logic of actions, you won’t get anywhere. You need to learn to connect strikes into elegant combos, calculate timings, and timely dodge attacks, activating the signature time slowdown.

Confronting a fearsome dragon

But it is really exciting to learn and develop here, as the interest is continuously maintained through new enemies, additional techniques, spectacular boss fights, and unexpected tricks. For example, the enemy can attack immediately after the end of a cutscene, and the platform under your feet can treacherously disappear at the most inconvenient moment. And when the game reminds you that you completed the level only on the tenth attempt, awarding you the lowest score, you involuntarily strive to be faster, higher, and stronger.

It is even more frustrating that towards the end, its enthusiasm fades away and gives way to battles with minimal changes. It is hard to say whether these are Japanese quirks or simply problems of outdated design, but the ending noticeably affects the overall impression.

Nevertheless, most of the chapters are a powerful and unadulterated meat grinder. There is nothing more beautiful than smashing stone faces with blows of 900 GIGATONS and summoning giant demonic spiders that tear apart yet another invincible deity into meaty chunks, accompanied by a j-pop cover of “Fly Me to The Moon”. That’s what Bayonetta is about, and it doesn’t need any justifications.

Facing the guillotine's edge

You never know where a portable guillotine might come in handy!

In this, essentially, lies the main drawback of the game. The story in it is simply unnecessary – at least in this form. The plot often dissipates into long and meaningless dialogues involving annoying characters, replacing full-fledged cutscenes with static frames, and overall behaving like the worst storyteller in the world. And there are even more cutscenes here, judging by the compilations on YouTube, than in Devil May Cry 4, which, no matter how you look at it, was several times more engaging in terms of narrative.

Bayonetta – 4K witch

On PC, Bayonetta finally feels at home – which can’t be said for the initial release on Xbox 360, suffering from “tearing” graphics, or the terrible port on PlayStation 3, where owners enjoyed the action at 20 FPS. The closest analogue is the Wii U version, but even it doesn’t compare to what we got.

First and foremost, it’s the support for sky-high resolutions. While graphically Bayonetta is no longer surprising, in 4K it looks much more vibrant, allowing you to see the excellent work of the designers in the smallest details.

An intense close-up encounter

Secondly, the game has flawless performance. Not enough to achieve the infamous “four-K” on a GTX 970, but at 1440p, the same graphics card consistently delivered 60 frames per second. However, it won’t go higher due to the fixed frame rate – a downside for owners of 144Hz monitors.

Furthermore, the PC version has been slightly enhanced visually, with added anti-aliasing, anisotropic filtering, and modern shading models. It’s difficult to notice the difference without a direct comparison, but the overall image has become more pleasant. The only noticeable improvement is the increased quality of shadows – in pre-rendered cutscenes, which were originally from consoles, they are significantly worse.

An important addition is the detailed graphics settings menu, which allows Bayonetta to be played smoothly even on configurations that barely meet the modern minimum requirements. Although even on the maximum preset, our not-so-young guest only utilizes a few gigabytes of video memory.

Battling demonic forces

The worst thing that happened to the PC version during the playthrough was a reset of all settings. After a restart, the game for some reason decided to turn off the sound and decrease the mouse sensitivity to zero. However, this problem never occurred again, so it cannot be considered significant in any way.

* * *

Without losing any of its relevance over the years, Bayonetta has finally made its way to computers in the best possible form. It’s time for us to fully immerse ourselves in the crazy whirlwind of Japanese creativity and thrilling action.

PC, PS3, Switch, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One
Nintendo, Sega
Release Date:
Editor's rating:
Is it worth playing? (If the score is more than 70%)



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