With Bayonetta 3 just around the corner, Bayonetta fans everywhere are preparing for the upcoming game. Whether it’s through analyzing the recent gameplay trailer or replaying past entries, the community is alive and well. Bayonetta 3 will be the latest in what some considered to be a tentpole franchise of the stylish action genre, having dovetailed off the Devil May Cry series when Clover Studio left Capcom to become Platinum Games. Some people take issue with Bayonetta 2’s gameplay changes, but despite that the franchise is still well-regarded after more than a decade.

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Part of that is because players struggle to find action at Bayonetta‘s scale anywhere else. These games consider over the top to be a baseline, and take great delight in sailing past any expectations for scope or reason. This is a series that started with two witches standing on a falling clock face fighting angelic dragons with guns and their hair. That moment was so iconic that it became Bayonetta’s stage in Super Smash Bros., yet the series was able to escalate from there. Each game ups the stakes higher than the last, and it’s been a joy to watch them grow each time Bayonetta reawakens.

RELATED: Why Bayonetta Fans Should Replay the Series Before 3


Bayonetta Has Already Gone Beyond Heaven and Hell

The first game practically represents an escalation from a normal action game. Immediately, players are thrown into battle with the forces of Paradiso with a monstrously overpowered witch at their fingertips. The game ratchets up the intensity from there, with Bayonetta regaining her huge Wicked Weave attacks after the prologue, meeting her rival Jeanne, and going on to gain successively more insane weapons and enemies in each Chapter. It just makes sense that the game’s finale takes place in space, with Bayonetta dueling a berserk statue imbued with the soul of Paradiso’s ruler Jubileus. It somehow manages to escalate one more time before the final credits roll, and that part really must be seen to be believed.

Bayonetta 2 had a rough go of following Bayonetta 1 up, and hardcore fans would say it fell short in many ways. However, it succeeded in its escalation. Bayonetta 2 made it clear that demons were not all Bayonetta’s friends, and that they needed to be fought just as much as angels. As the action continued, it was gradually revealed that Paradiso and Inferno are less like the Catholic imagery they draw from and closer to mirrored realms hanging in delicate balance, with more cosmic powers above them. One of these ends up being the final boss, and while Aesir’s fight is considerably less epic than Jubileus’ was, the fact that Bayonetta’s friends and family came together to defeat him by summoning an even stronger god still made the ending suitably epic.

Where Bayonetta 3’s Escalation Could Go

The Bayonetta games have scraped against the top of what cosmic forces the heroine could fight, so Bayonetta 3 has to go in another direction. Trailers have heavily implied the latest entry will be a multiversal story focusing on a different Bayonetta with even greater abilities than before. Where the first Bayonetta title used summoned demons in quick-time events, and the second introduced Umbran Climax to add brief summons to gameplay, the third goes even farther. Bayonetta can now summon playable demons with the Demon Slave ability, and can fuse with her current weapon to perform a Demon Masquerade. This is a tactical way to keep Umbran Climax around without it being as strong, and, with Viola serving as the first full secondary protagonist, the action is markedly wilder than before.

All that remains is the new enemy force. It seems that the old cosmic powers have been replaced with man-made weapons called Homunculi, which bring to mind the Chimeras in Astral Chain. As a point of comparison, Bayonetta flying towards the draconic Gomorrah in Bayonetta 2 is recreated in 3 with a Bayonetta-mounted Gomorrah leaping towards a titanic crystaline beast. The Homunculi are definitely strong, but it remains to be seen how high their power will scale compared to divine threats. Whatever the case, an epic struggle involving multiple versions of Bayonetta, Jeanne, and other familiar faces sounds like a blast.

Bayonetta 3 will be released on October 28, 2022, for the Nintendo Switch.

MORE: Bayonetta 3 Looks Like It Will Explore The Multiverse



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