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5 new features to look forward to in Bayonetta 3

The witch is back, and she's bringing a ton of new mechanics and features along with her.

For many, it’s hard to keep your work feeling fresh after so many years. For some, it all comes naturally. And our favorite Umbra Witch Bayonetta has maintained a fiery passion since her debut game in 2009. With Bayonetta 3 just around the corner and all its new features on display, clearly, time hasn’t slowed this angel-slayer down.

We’ve been gearing up for the launch of Bayonetta 3 later this month. From the trailers so far, it looks like it will continue the high-octane action we’ve come to expect while throwing in some new curveballs our way. With new gameplay mechanics, play styles, and improvements on the way, PlatinumGames is shaping this up to be the best Bayonetta yet.

Today, we’re gonna talk about five new features Bayonetta 3 is bringing to the table. They’re in no particular order, but they all show that the series is still evolving while staying tied to its roots. We’d hope for nothing less from Bayonetta and her gang of misfits.

1. Expanded demon summoning with Demon Slave

Bayonetta 3 still lets you deal out the punishment as you always could.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Bayonetta series, let’s do a quick breakdown of what it’s all about — and what the new game brings to the table. In Bayonetta, you take control of the titular Umbra Witch and hunt down monsters known as angels. Using her multitude of weapons and combat skills, you can deliver devastating combo attacks that pile on the pain.

Bayonetta 3 doesn’t revamp the gameplay, but does make little enhancements here and there to tighten it up in addition to new features. Perhaps the biggest change to the combat is an expansion to Bayonetta’s demon summoning abilities. Bayonetta can once again transform into her demons to aid her in battle, but now she can do so at will. This new mechanic is known as Demon Slave, and dramatically changes the flow of battle.

Previously, you’d only be able to use these demons in special events, but now, Bayonetta can summon demons at any time during combat. So while they don’t have as much significance as a climactic finishing move, you now have far more opportunities to turn the tide in battle with your demon companions.

2. Demon Masquerade

Bayonetta 3 Gameplay 1
Bayonetta can now transform into her demon companions at any time in combat with Demon Masquerade.

Right from the reveal trailer, we got a taste of one of Bayonetta’s most powerful new additions in combat. As previously mentioned, Bayonetta’s demon summons used to be relegated to cutscenes and special occasions. Now, in addition to bringing them into the fray and controlling them externally, you’ll have a brand new way to bring them into the fray.

Bayonetta is able to transform into her Infernal Demons to perform incredibly powerful attacks. It’s essentially an expanded version of the Beast Within mechanic, with an added emphasis on using demons as combo finishers or to deal a special attack.

Your Infernal Demon will change depending on which weapon you have equipped. Confirmed returning Infernal Demons you can transform into include the butterfly Madama Butterfly, the dragon Gomorrah, the spider Phantasmaraneae, the harpy Malphas, and the toad Baal. New weapon Dead End Express grants you access to T696 the train.

3. Homunculi, the new enemies

Bayonetta 3 Homunculi
You’re going up against a brand new foe this time with the Homunculi.

There’s a brand new kind of threat that Bayonetta and the crew face up against this time. Dubbed the Homunculi, these creatures are neither demon nor angel and appear to be vaguely humanoid. It’s not exactly known where they come from, but they’re no less of a threat.

These creatures apparently are manufactured from human beings, and thus, don’t belong to either the realm of Paradiso or Inferno. We can infer from some of the trailers that they come from a human named Sigurd. However, why they’re invading the mortal realm and what their master’s ultimate goal is still eludes us.

We don’t yet know a ton about these enemies in terms of gameplay. We’re also unsure if angels from previous games will return. Yet it’s a great way to keep the series fresh with its combat.

4. Viola, the new playable character

Bayonetta 3 Viola
An Umbra Witch in training, Viola delivers the pain with her devastating attacks and demon companion Cheshire.

Bayonetta has never truly fought alone, although she’s certainly capable enough to do so. In past games, she’s had a litany of allies by her side including the infernal arms dealer Rodin, journalist Luka, informant Enzo, and, of course, fellow Umbra Witch Jeanne. The latter has been playable since the first game, yet Bayonetta 3 introduces a brand new playable character to the roster: the rookie Umbra Witch Viola, who looks like a fun and different addition to the team.

Viola brings a whole different playstyle to the table — fitting, as she’s still in training. Compared to Bayonetta, she’s overall slower both in field movement and combat. Thus, you’ll have to be a little more careful when it comes to evading attacks, as Viola relies more on blocking than dodging. (Blocking is also how she activates Witch Time.) Yet she makes up for it in raw power, with her untapped and uncontrolled potential letting her deal damaging attacks with her sword Mabu-Dachi.

Like Bayonetta, Viola can also call upon the aid of a demon summon. She’s limited to only one, the demon cat Cheshire who, unlike Bayonetta’s demons, attacks independently of Viola. That means you’re still able to deal out damage with the Umbra Witch while Cheshire is active, at the cost of not being able to directly control him.

5. Jeanne’s stealth platforming adventure

Bayonetta 3 Jeanne
Jeanne’s got her own little adventure in Bayonetta 3, it seems.

Fans expected that Bayonetta’s part-rival part-ally Jeanne would make an appearance in Bayonetta 3. However, it wasn’t confirmed until recently whether or not she would be playable or not. With all the attention in Viola as a new main character, it made sense to assume that Jeanne might have a lesser role this time.

However, the latest trailer revealed that Jeanne will have a role in the sequel — albeit not in the way you might have expected.

A brief bit of gameplay showed gameplay of Jeanne in a 2D action-platformer style. She’s infiltrating some kind of laboratory performing stealth kills and navigating around larger rooms through acrobatics. With a time limit in place and an emphasis on stealth, these sections might be more of a race against the clock with less bloodshed in mind. (If you can avoid it.)

We don’t yet know how big a role these sections play in the story. Jeanne has also been revealed to still be a character in the main narrative, at least as an NPC. How PlatinumGames will integrate Jeanne’s stealth platforming into the main adventure, we can’t say.

The witch is back — and back in style, as always.

Bayonetta 3 will launch on Oct. 28 for the Nintendo Switch, costing $59.99 USD. In addition to the standard digital edition, the game will be receiving a physical edition as well, dubbed the Trinity Masquerade Edition. It includes a 200-page artbook and three special game sleeves.

Pre-order the game for your Nintendo Switch here via our affiliate link!

What new features are you looking forward to most in Bayonetta 3? Let us know!

Daniel Hein

Daniel Hein is either A) a lifelong video game fanatic, writer, and storyteller just sharing his thoughts on things, or B) some kind of werewolf creature. We're not quite sure which yet. He also makes mediocre video game retrospectives (and other content!) on YouTube where you can watch him babble on for hours about nothing.
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