Bayonetta 1 and 2 are coming to the Nintendo Switch for the first time this month, bringing the two hack-and-slash classics together for the first time since the Wii U. The Switch versions don’t feature the most significant changes over the originals — but that’s not a bad thing.
The Bayonetta games, developed by PlatinumGames, are most recognizable for their similarities to Devil May Cry — which makes sense, considering both were helmed by Hideki Kamiya — as well as for their strong female lead, religious and sexual undertones and campy, exaggerated attitude. The protagonist, Bayonetta, also has a unique fighting style: Her clothes, which are made out of her hair, come off to use in special magical attacks.
The biggest change for the Switch versions of the Bayonetta games is the frame rate, with both games running at 60 fps. They still run at 720p, but the upgrade allows them to reach the better frame rate when the Switch is both docked and in handheld mode. That’s an improvement over the Wii U versions; those failed to run at 60 fps, despite fan expectations.
Bayonetta 2 will also feature upgraded amiibo support. Obviously the Bayonetta amiibo will work, but players can also unlock costumes based on other Nintendo characters with their corresponding amiibo. The 2014 former Wii U exclusive will also bring back touchscreen mode (usable with the Switch in handheld mode) and co-op.
Otherwise, the two games will remain largely identical to their older counterparts. But at a Los Angeles press event on Wednesday, I was treated to a bit of Bayonetta 2 on the Switch console, and was pleasantly surprised by how much it holds up and by how good it looks on a 60-inch TV. The increased frame rate allows for smoother gameplay, so you can dodge attacks with relative ease and finish off enemies with your chainsaw boots. I know a lot of people would’ve hoped for 1080p and 60fps, but even at 720p, it looks great.
With the Bayonetta series finally available on the Switch, more people will be able to relive two of the best hack-and-slash games of the last decade. They’ll also allow audiences to get ready for Bayonetta 3, which was announced at The Game Awards in December. There’s no release date yet, but it will be a Switch exclusive. The games will be released Feb. 16, 2018.