Hang on. Bayonetta and Vanquish are ten years old?!
I swear, 2010 seems to be the year that stemmed a number of previous generation classics, with some of them continuing to live on in this generation. And that includes a couple of Platinum Games releases that continue to feel fresh and lively, especially with a new coat of paint.
Bayonetta & Vanquish 10th Anniversary Bundle relives two of these classics, now with 60 frames per second animation and 4K support, so they look better than ever. Two years ago, PC owners were treated to this smorgasbord of nerve-wracking delights. Now, it’s time for console owners to have a turn, and I love it.
On the PS4, Bayonetta serves as a vindication of sorts. The PS3 port left a lot to be desired, even though it was still adequately fun. But on the PS4, it goes all out, not holding anything back as you follow the beginning of a witch’s journey into a fight against the balance. This means going up against all sorts of luxurious beasts, using gunfire and even your own wardrobe to chew them into tiny pieces.
While the sequel has gone on to greater success exclusively as a Nintendo release (first on the Wii U and then the Switch), the original game still deserves celebration. The gameplay is wildly fun, as you unleash all sorts of crazy attacks on your opponents, chaining together combos and using witch-like abilities to get ahead. There’s even a pretty cool maneuver where you can activate temporary platforms thanks to some split-second timing, with a quick move on your part.
Bayonetta has also never looked better than it does. The beautiful animation still stands out after ten years, and the 4K support is greatly appreciated so you can see every little detail. It still gets a bit frantic at times, especially towards the end. But this is one ride that Bayonetta fans won’t mind taking again.
The real gem of the collection, however, is Vanquish. This is an outstanding port, running at a beautiful 60 frames per second without missing a beat. And considering how ridiculous the action gets, it’s great that it holds up so well.
In Vanquish, you’ll follow a soldier that has no problem sliding into hellish scenarios as he takes on a rogue army of robot soldiers. Along the way, he’ll use some slo-mo abilities, a rocket-powered jump kick and even some different types of firepower as he mows them down. One particular sequence has him on a fast-moving platform that takes the game to new dizzying heights.
The original Vanquish was already a technical achievement with the way it was put together, but with its newfound visual polish and tighter-than-ever gameplay, it feels phenomenal. The game doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to action; and it delivers around every corner. Every damn action fan needs to give this one a go, without hesitation.
As far as what the Bayonetta & Vanquish 10th Anniversary Bundle is missing, I’d say it’s extras. There’s really not much here to explore the making of the games, or even any extra art. Just the games themselves. On the plus side, the physical version is quite the collectible, with excellent Steelbook art that truly stands out in your collection.
But sometimes the core ingredients just click. Bayonetta & Vanquish 10th Anniversary Bundle is a terrific package that’s worth revisiting, and the games continue to be outstanding, even with their delightfully smooth repackaging. No Platinum fan — hell, no action fan — should be without it.
Now, while we’re celebrating tenth anniversaries…hey, Activision, how about that Blur re-release?