I’ve played the odd Platinum game before, so it shouldn’t have surprised me, but the final few stages of Bayonetta just went nuts. From the riding a missile Space Harrier homage (complete with “Welcome to My Fantasy Zone” and “Get Ready!”, and a remix of that games theme), to running up the wall of an external lift shaft, controlling Jeanne on her motorbike in space, to eventually taking on Jubileus: God in the form of a giant naked woman with elemental powers. And that’s just what happens before the end credits.
When I reached the tower that makes up the penultimate level of the game, I was fully expecting a SuckySuck(TM) bit – a boss rush, fighting all the previous bosses again. Which of course, is what happened. They were much easier this time around, and some were somewhat abridged, so it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. Part way up the tower there was a frustrating platforming section where Bayonetta had to run up some wall panels, but was only able to stick to those with patterns on. Oh, and the panels kept disappearing. The camera angle didn’t assist much, sometimes rotating so after a while I realised I had somehow started moving back down the wall instead of up it, much to my annoyance.
Like other Platinum games, though, it’s all about the fight, the pomp and the increasing levels of ludicrousness and focussing on the small minuses such as the camera or the asset reuse seems rather missing the point. After all, you’re a witch with sentient hair and guns on your feet who can summon demons and has to take down the creator of the universe. I don’t think slight quirks of the game engine really matter.
That said, fighting Jubileus was an exercise in acceptance. She/he/it was enormous, and fought you inside an even bigger sphere. Up and down had no meaning for much of the fight but navigating even short distances within the space was confusing, especially while avoiding attacks and trying to repel bullets-with-faces back at the boss. With her finally down, another nonsensical sequence played off with you flying after her into the sun, avoiding the planets on the way. The reason for doing this was not clear, as then the end credits rolled and after that there was another section of game where the statue of Jubileus needed to be destroyed as it plummeted to Earth.
More credits then, which went on for some time, with more lunacy. Some more fighting (for which you’re scored, so you’d better not have put the controller down!), a long sequence showing Bayonetta pole dancing, what seemed to be a music video with Bayonetta and chums (and foes) dancing in formation, and a bit where Jeanne cosplays as a nun. Erm.
What I’m trying to say, is that the game has lots of great fighting and is also one of the maddest titles you can (or rather, can’t) imagine. I’ve no idea if Bayonetta 2 can raise the bar, as I can’t see where else there is to go. It’s still Platinum though, so I expect it can.