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Why the Wii U Needs a Game Like Bayonetta 2
The Wii U is a console that may be on its way to niche status, much like the Gamecube when it failed to catch on like the Xbox and especially the PlayStation 2. I’m not saying this is a bad thing – the Gamecube is one of my favorite consoles of all time, and it produced a ton of games you just had to play.
From the excellent Wind Waker, to epic RPGs like Tales of Symphonia, and great action titles like Viewtiful Joe the Gamecube ended its life cycle with a library of games to satisfy anyone looking for a good time.
Speaking of Viewtiful Joe, it’s worth noting that the company that developed that game, Clover Studios ended up becoming Platinum Games, one of the best developers of action games in the modern games industry. Directed by Hideki Kamiya, Clover produced a unique action game which emphasized controlling the game’s speed in order to get through the game.
It was a tough game, but highly rewarding – a reputation that has come to serve as a common factor in the games which Platinum Games now makes. Without a lot of hand holding involved, Platinum lets players learn for themselves.
Last year, Platinum released The Wonderful 101 on the Wii U. A unique game that combined elements of an action game with a Pikmin-like twist of controlling many characters at once, The Wonderful 101 did what Platinum does best. It was hard, and rewarded players with lots of skill and the ability to learn fast.
Now, we’re waiting on the next game from Platinum to launch for the Wii U, hopefully sometime this year. I’m talking about Bayonetta 2, a game I believe the Wii U needs – a title with loads of personality and if its anything like the first game it’s going to be a tough game.
The Wii U, I believe has tried its best to establish itself in the time since its release. Yet, despite these efforts I think the console’s best games haven’t done as much to distinguish themselves*. Bayonetta 2 is the kind of game that will bring a type of high speed action to the Wii U that it’s yet to have glimpsed.
The first Bayonetta made dodging a key mechanic, to the point where last second dodges opened the title character up to using her magic and unleashing her most devastating attacks. The less you get hit, the more her magic would build which not only unlocked her finishing moves, but also special quick time event moves. Get hit even once, and Bayonetta’s magic (and of course, her health) drops. Without proper dodging, the game becomes incredibly difficult to clear – you need to be on your A-game.
It doesn’t look like the Wii U version will be letting up. And the other part of Bayonetta’s appeal doesn’t seem to be doing so either.
The first game had personality, and tons of it. It was edgy and over the top – Bayonetta didn’t mind having sex appeal, as exaggerated as it was. The game threw baffling cutscenes at you with great action and at times and a total disregard for sense and logic. I’ve heard people complain that the story didn’t make sense – why would you expect it to?
What mattered was that Bayonetta was an incredibly fun game, even when it was totally unforgiving. Even when its personality reached out and demanded your attention with its insanity, it never felt overbearing. It was just preparing you for another moment of crazed action – warning you that your finger should be squarely on the dodge button, because it’s about time you earned your way through the game.
And to me, this is exactly the kind of game the Wii U needs. Bayonetta 2 will be the type of game that appeals to the hardcore gaming crowd, a group that may end up being the only real audience that the Wii U has. If that ends up the case, we need games from companies like Platinum – we need something that will test us and make us earn our fun. I believe that Bayonetta 2 will end up being one of the Wii U’s best games.
*Except Super Mario 3D World, which introduced multiplayer into a 3D Mario game with a bang, coupled with amazing level design and a set of some of the best power ups to ever grace a Mario title