(Pocket-lint) – Bayonetta 3 has been a long time coming – the last game came out in 2014, after all, so we’re well past the stage where another sequel is overdue.
The bombastic action game series has legions of devoted fans, and we’re getting a third outing, but details have been thin on the ground. Find out all the key points right here.
Bayonetta 3 release date
We first got official confirmation of Bayonetta 3 way back in late 2017 when it was announced that The Game Awards with the extremely brief pre-rendered teaser you can check out below.
We then heard nothing for pretty much four long years, before another trailer surfaced during a welcome Nintendo Direct to show off the first gameplay and confirm that Bayonetta 3 should be coming out in 2022, although we don’t know exactly when.
Bayonetta 3 platforms
As both trailers have made clear, Bayonetta 3 is coming to one platform and one platform only – the Nintendo Switch.
Although the first game was available on a few consoles, Bayonetta 2 only ever appeared on the beleaguered Wii U before being re-released on the Switch, and it would seem that PlatinumGames is happy to keep things limited to Nintendo again.
There’s no saying whether it could be ported down the line, but if you want to play Bayonetta 3 at launch you’ll need a Switch to do so.
Bayonetta 3 story
Bayonetta’s story across two games so far has been frankly unhinged, with time loops and time travelling mixing in with crazy paranormal demons and a war between eldritch gods via their earthly worshippers or opponents.
If you haven’t played the last two games, we think you’re almost guaranteed to be able to drop into Bayonetta 3 without any real knowledge beyond the fact that this is a world of demons and warrior nuns that use their semi-sentient hair to fight evil.
If that sounds crazy, well, Bayonetta is more than a little crazy and leans heavily into its camp and crazy tone to serve up twisting melodramatic tales where the story is very much secondary to the action, and we’re pretty sure we’ll get more of the same from the third instalment.
One interesting tidbit is that the second trailer ends with a mysterious sword-wielding figure slashing the date away, and they’re an all-new character design for the series – could this be a new adversary for Bayonetta to face?
Bayonetta 3 gameplay
The second trailer we got for Bayonetta 3, in late 2021, is a longer look that gives us some snippets of gameplay to sink our teeth into, and you can see that it’s very much a smooth evolution of the combat we enjoyed so much in the first two games.
Once again you can blend ranged attacks using Bayonetta’s pistols with close-up assaults using kicks and jabs, powering yourself up to be able to unleash hair attacks that do more damage and torture attacks that finish enemies off in BDSM-inflected ways.
This time it looks like Bayonetta will have even more direct control over the super-enteties she sometimes summons, too, with a fight that looks like you might as well be a kaiju appearing at one point.
The visuals look fairly consistent with Bayonetta 2, which isn’t a huge surprise given that game also came to the Switch, but we might get some smoother performance since PlatinumGames has had a number of years to get to grips with the hardware’s kinks.
We’re clearly getting a return for the superb Witch Time dynamic, which lets you enter slow motion for a bit when you execute a well-timed dodge, and the scale looks even bigger than ever, which is very much saying something for a franchise this bombastic.
Writing by Max Freeman-Mills.