Hot chick on the cover? Check. Kind of resembles the Baroness from GI Joe? Double Check. Guns? Check – check her feet too, cause those high heels are packing heat too. Wait, what? From the get-go, you know this isn’t going to be a normal shooter. But just how far down the rabbit-hole does it go? Come with me for an interesting journey.
To be totally honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect from this game. On the surface, it looks like Devil May Cry and God of War thrown together, mixed in with a few of the more “respectable” character models from the Dead or Alive series for good measure. In other words, it had the potential for being something very entertaining, or something that felt like it’s been done to death a hundred times before, and that within minutes I would be turning off my Xbox and tossing the game and case back into the Give to Friends I Don’t Really Care About pile of games.
But along comes one of the most over-the-top, guns-blazing, unforgettable prologues I have every experienced in my 20 plus years of gaming. Without warning, you are thrown into what in most other games would be the lead-up battle to a boss fight, with seemingly endless wave after wave of enemies, just asking to be executed in the most over-the-top style you can imagine. Of course, at this point, you have had no proper introduction to the control system or special move-list, so you are basically pulling off random combos and incredibly well animated visceral executions without knowing how or why you are doing so. Did I mention that this was all happening on the face of a giant clock tower – as it is careening end over end down the face of mountain? Bayonetta is a game that reaches through the 4th wall, grabs you by your face and screams “can you hear me now?” as loud as possible, while punching you repeatedly about the head and neck.
The art style for the game is very unique as well, which fits the over-the-top in-your-face atmosphere, from having still photo spreads for cutscenes (which are actually still images from a roll of film, interestingly enough) with the dialogue played over the images, to full out game-engine animated scenes mixed up to keep you on your toes. Bayonetta herself is apparently the last Witch on the planet, and has just woken up from a 500 year nap at the bottom of a lake, and is on a mission to find her memory and cause general havoc and chaos for the good guys – or bad guys, in this case. Every singles enemy in the game is an “angel”, replete with glowing halo’s over their heads, and your job is to eradicate them in the most awful and punishing ways possible. You even have the option of executing Punishment and Torture attacks, such as summoning an Iron Maiden to crush and destroy your enemies, or at later stages when you have improved your magic abilites, calling larger than life demons to eradicate all the enemies around you. Read more…
Gaming has become quite the luxury these days. Some people have plenty of money to spare and some people don’t mind skipping meals and cutting down on haircuts but it seems to me that a person invests in only one system. Interestingly enough, rivalries between system owners are as heated as those between the developers themselves.
So now that the consoles of today are just about obsolete and new ones are on the way, who?s side are you going to be on?
Sure, there are people who have been loyal to Nintendo since the first Super Mario Brothers game, thus they are sure to buy their next system. Sure, there are people who love Halo so much they?re going to invest in Xbox 360, heck, I know someone who?s trying to pre-order it.
But for the most part I?m finding that from the people who play video games so much that they should seek medical attention to the people who buy a game once a year ? PS3 is the system of choice.
If you read my column last week about the Xbox 360 you know I went into a lot of detail with regards to its impressive hardware specs and PS3 is no exception. The key to the power of the PS3 is it?s exclusive Cell processor technology developed by IBM. The Cell processor is composed of a PowerPC processing element (PPE) and eight Synergistic Processing Elements (SPEs). Basically, information flows from the PPE to the eight SPEs; as a result the PS3 is capable of concurrently processing eight threads at its full speed of 3.2Ghz.
Similar to the Xbox 360, to truly appreciate this kind of a CPU you?ll need a High Definition television but the PS3 will still operate just fine on any modern TV. The definitive difference between the Xbox 360 and PS3 has to be that while the Xbox 360 is sticking with a DVD drive, PS3 will boast a Blu-ray disc drive.
Blu-ray, which employs a blue-violet laser to read and write data technology, is apparently the format aimed at replacing DVDs. Once again, this all goes back to the push tech-developers are making towards HD television as Blu-ray is hoping to become the standard of high-def DVD flicks and consequently making us all jealous of the bourgeoisie.
A single-layer Blu-ray disc holds 25Gbs and a double-layer disc a whopping 50Gbs. Now first of all, if this is true, for all the people who invested thousands into building DVD collections ? I told you so. Second of all, although this technology will obviously make the PS3 a powerhouse it is still quite the gamble.
Blu-ray discs are very expensive to develop and consequently for this medium to pick up PS3 itself will have to do most of the work and frankly, nobody has been in a rush to buy minidisks so that they can watch movies on their PSPs so far. Sony is hoping that Blu-ray becomes the standard so that buying a PS3 becomes easier but has made sure that its compatible with CR-ROM, CD-RW, DVD, DVD-ROM, DVD-R, DVD+R formats
As if the Blu-ray factor wasn?t dubious enough it also looks like you will have to purchase the hard drive separately. Now this right here is what I like to call the low-blow: to buy a system and then more for extras such as memory cards or RF switches is quite the annoyance, but just imagine how much hard drive is going to cost.
Now in terms of connectivity, the PS3 has built in Wi-Fi and Gigabit Ethernet connections. In english, the PS3 will be able to connect at an incredible speed, ten times that of the Xbox 360?s. Speed is not as important to multiplayer gaming as people think so it?s likely PS3 has it?s site of expanding into other markets – rumours have it Sony plans to eventually distribute movies online. There hasn?t been an indication as to how much the online service will cost but I?m betting that it definitely won?t be free.
Making use of Bluetoooth technology the PS3 will have wireless controllers and will be able to interact with the PSP With the six USB ports you?ll be able to plug in anything from a camera to an mp3 player and likely a keyboard; similar to the Xbox 360, PS3 will operate as a multi-media centre.
In the end what really matters are the games and PS3 is going to have a solid selection such as the next instalments of Devil May Cry, Final Fantasy, Killzone, Metal Gear Solid, and Tekken.
Clearly these are examples of what made the PS2 a huge success: the very fact that Sony has always made sure to provide a selection of games that span such a wide range. On the contrary, catering mostly to a younger crowd is what led to the Nintendo Gamecube?s poor success in North America. How fitting it is that the title of their next console is exactly what Nintendo needs – a revolution. Come back next week to find out more.