Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Why Bayonetta is my favorite game

Bayonetta is my favorite game. Although, unlike many other people's favorite game, it isn't so obvious why. So here's why:

- Bayonetta has the most satisfying gameplay I've ever expereinced. I have always been interested in the action games, but when it came to 3D action games, I have been met with only disappointment after the original Devil May Cry. Devil May Cry, while excellent, was a very rough game that had a lot of untapped potential. In my opinion, no 3D action game after DMC1 dwelved into the untapped potential of 3D action. 3D action games over the past decade have felt very limited; mainly in that combos were very short and the amount of freedom given to the player was very limited. Furthermore, 3D action games never really felt satisfying. They simply felt like more of a chore than an experience; I mean, sure, God of War had epic scale battles, but that was more of something you watched, mainly due to the QTEs that would break up the flow of the battles. I thought the potential would never be realized, that is until Bayonetta. Leave it to the Hideki Kamiya to bring out the potential of a genre he cultivated.

With Bayonetta, the combat is simply spectacular. Bayonetta is built upon the same foundation of Devil May Cry, but developed the formula to whole new level. The combat is a beautiful. It flows and it has depth, but most of all: it has freedom. In past action games, the combat felt so limited, like there was a set path you had to follow to achieve goals. In Bayonetta, there are so many options that everyone who plays the game will play it differently than someone else. The amount of weapons, techniques, and accessories all come together in an excellent free-form battle system. Truly, Team Little Angels has made gameplay perfection.

Furthermore, the combat is insanely satisfying. From the Torture Attacks to the incredible enemy AI, the combat all comes together in one fantastic package. The use of button-mashing sequences in Bayonetta simply further enhances the satisfaction. That combined with the awe-inspriing action on-screen all makes for a fantastic experience. It really isn't so much the scale of the enemies you fight, but the fact that you, as the player, are part of this incredible scale and fighting it.

And, of course, there is Bayonetta's diversity of gameplay. From the large assortment of enemies, to the motorcyle and missle sequences; Bayonetta's gameplay never gets dull; even through multiple playthroughs.

Gameplay doesn't get any better than Bayonetta's.

- Next comes the presentation. Detailed graphics mean nothing without a great presentation. Art direction and style mean everything in a game's presentation, especially in an action game. Bayonetta's presentation of gameplay is one of the best I've ever seen in an action game. Sure, the film-strip cut-scenes are very bad, but when it comes to what you see throughout most of the game, it's beautiful. Bayonetta herself is a spectacel for the eyes with incredible animations all emphasized by the stylish weapons she wields. Her sexy style is something refreshing in a character because it's something never seen before in an action game, and from the stylish techniques to her beautiful voice, Bayonetta is always the highlight of the screen throughout the whole game. Furthermore, the gameplay never stops once it gets going. Only in boss battles does there ever occur a break in the action, and it is always used to push the battle forward, never halt or pause the excitement.

Bayonetta's boss battles are easily some of the greatest moments I've experienced in a game. The graphics are astounding, and not simply in detail, but animation and interaction. Animations of the enormous bosses are astounding, but none of that would mean anything if the boss was sationary or locked in place. No, not in Bayonetta. In Bayonetta the bosses are always moving and attacking fiercely with never a dull moment, especially on the harder difficulties. The spectacle of the battles goes even further by having the bosses interact with the stages Bayonetta is on.

Furthermore, Bayonetta has some of the most epic boss battle themes ever. A lot of passion went into each boss theme, and the result is something that enhances the action to an even greater level. A simply mind-blowing presentation, but that's to be expected from the developers of Okami.

- What all these factors create is combat that feels "alive". This is what makes Bayonetta my favorite game of all time. Bayonetta is the first game that I've played that felt like more than a game. Bayonetta is an experience. Hideki Kamiya put it best: Bayonetta is a game you feel. The gameplay gives the player freedom, and the presentation gives the player excitement. All of these apects makes for something that feels like no other game. Many other games have come close to being an experience, such as Shadow of the Colossus, Okami, Metroid Prime, and SoulCalibur; and there are several other games that are better than Bayonetta. But Bayonetta excels so much at what it does right, that it is impossible not to be impressed by it all.

There may be games with better stories than Bayonetta. There may be games with better detailed graphics than Bayonetta. There may be games that have higher production values than Bayonetta. But none of those games will ever feel the way Bayonetta does.

1 comment:

  1. just finished the game and couldn't have said it better myself