Bayonetta 3's lead facial animator has addressed the titular witch's face change and "cute" new look in the third game.
Platinum's Umbra Witch is iconic not only for her no-nonsense attitude but also for her unusual style. The character's appearance changes considerably from game to game, with Bayonetta 3 offering the most drastic departure from her original design so far.
In a blog post on Platinum's website, Bayonetta 3's lead facial animator Senkan discusses Bayonetta's new design and the challenge of creating a more realistic look for the protagonist that also retains the essence of who she is.
"Bayonetta, who appears in Bayonetta 3, has a more realistic expression than in past works," explains Senkan. "So I am particular about creating expressions that connect to the image of the character 'Bayonetta' common to the series, and the hairstyle has also changed, so I had a hard time getting close to the image in the early days."
With her pink make-up, larger glasses, and Cereza-style locks, Bayonetta's look is also a lot more cutesy than before. "While incorporating this element of cuteness, I tried to create an expression that would not ruin the impression of Bayonetta," says Senkan.
Far from ruining anything, Bayonetta's new style is the perfect nod to the character's roots and her past life as Cereza, something that we'll get to explore more of in the newly announced prequel Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon, which is set to launch on Switch next year.
Bayonetta's look isn't the only thing that's different this time around. For the third game, she's voiced by Jennifer Hale rather than Hellena Taylor after the latter issued a video statement claiming she'd received an "insulting" offer to voice the character. Bloomberg reports disputed the actor's claims, and in subsequent tweets, Taylor confirmed she was offered more than she initially implied.
Bayonetta fans can seemingly expect plenty more from the zany action series as in a recent interview, series lead Hideki Kamiya said he "can't conceive the Bayonetta series ever ending".
Check out our upcoming Switch games guide to see what's launching on Nintendo's console next year.