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Bayonetta 3 Release Date, Trailer, And Gameplay - What We Know So Far

At long last, "the witch. Is. BACK!" So declared Nintendo during its September 2021 Direct presentation, much to the delight of patient fans who have waited years for a new entry in PlatinumGames' beloved hack and slash series.

"Bayonetta" first graced television screens worldwide back in 2010, releasing for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 before later making the leap to other platforms. It received universal acclaim, earning 90 and 87 Metacritic scores on its initial systems. Bolstered by the strong reception, Platinum greenlit a sequel. Despite hitting a few snags during the development process, "Bayonetta 2" finally launched in 2014 as part of a collaboration with Nintendo. Though it started as a Wii U exclusive, the sequel wowed critics and players, much like its predecessor.

The third installment in the "Bayonetta" franchise brings the titular protagonist to the streets of Tokyo where she encounters a never-before-seen enemy type that is "neither angel [or] demon." A fresh game director, new gameplay elements, and an updated ensemble combine to deliver an experience at once mysterious and familiar, with Bayonetta dancing "into the fray looking more fashionable and elegant than ever."

Here's what we know so far about "Bayonetta 3."

What is the Bayonetta 3 release date?

PlatinumGames and Nintendo revealed "Bayonetta 3" way back in December 2017 at The Game Awards. Almost four years passed without substantial updates, leaving gamers to wonder whether "Bayonetta 3" is still coming out. Executive director Hideki Kamiya answered this question with a resounding "yes!" in September, revealing the team had kept players waiting for all the right reasons.

"With 'Bayonetta 3,' I'm still overseeing the world and story, but in order to breathe some new life into the game I've chosen Yusuke Miyata, a longtime and trusted co-worker (although he can be a bit of a goofball), as the director," shared Kamiya in a blog post. As divulged in a second message from Miyata himself, the third "Bayonetta" installment marks his first time working on the series. Miyata assured fans that he had experience developing a number of "character games," and that he had consumed all media related to "Bayonetta" in preparation for his new role.

"No matter how great your expectations may be, I promise we'll deliver an experience that exceeds all of them," asserted Kamiya. Thankfully, players won't have to wait much longer to discover whether the developers can deliver on that vow. As announced during the September 2021 Nintendo Direct, "Bayonetta 3" releases at some point in 2022 for Nintendo Switch.

Is there a trailer for Bayonetta 3?

Nintendo unveiled "Bayonetta 3" with a brief Teaser Trailer in 2017. A second, more extensive showcase followed in 2021, providing the first look at "Bayonetta 3" gameplay.

The September 2021 trailer opens with a tense scene in which local military forces attempt to take on a massive creature in the streets of Tokyo's Shibuya area. Their weapons, which include automatic firearms and rockets, have no effect on their target. Another of the mysterious entities appears from thin air behind the soldiers and quickly lays waste to the unit.

Bayonetta chooses this moment to make her grand entrance, destroying one of the creatures in just a few seconds. "It seems I'm unfashionably late," quips the protagonist, "but I'm ready to give you everything you want." It seems even the star of the franchise knows that PlatinumGames has kept players waiting, and she's eager to ensure the delay was worth it.

What is the gameplay like in Bayonetta 3?

As laid out by director Yusuke Miyata, Platinum has gone out of its way to keep the gameplay fresh for the third "Bayonetta" entry. "We sprinkled a lot of new elements throughout the frenetic pacing," explained Miyata. While the team has reserved some secrets for later reveals, Miyata zeroed in on a new mechanic called "Demon Slave."

As you might have guessed from the name, "Demon Slave" allows players to take control of Infernal Demons. "Unlike the Climax Summons of previous games that automatically defeated enemies and returned to Inferno, this mechanic lets players control demons during gameplay and unleash a host of intuitive actions," Miyata offered. Different demons provide their own unique abilities, creating advantages in specific scenarios. Miyata didn't go into further detail, though he did encourage fans to hunt for more clues in the September First Look trailer.

The official PlatinumGames site provided another interesting gameplay tidbit: Bayonetta will have the ability to perform a "Demon Masquerade," "[fusing] with an Infernal Demon to wield even more formidable magic power." You can expect additional "Bayonetta 3" news in the coming months, as the team has entered the "home stretch of development."