Sunday Jul 26, 2009
Friday was Bayonetta Day, I’m calling it. Friday was the day we not only had the first appearances of the Bayonetta model at the Comic Con show, but also the PlatinumGames Panel, and our special community event for Bayonetta at the Hard Rock Café. And to top it off, Friday was easily the busiest day at Comic Con that I’ve seen yet.
Where to begin? I guess a good spot is with our real life Bayonetta, who dazzled the crowd at San Diego Comic Con throughout the day. The costume is really amazing, and for a show that has such great support for costumed attendees, many people took the time to admire the quality outfit. What really cinches it is the way our Bayonetta model looks against the game, she’s a perfect fit and there’s no question, she is Bayonetta. I was fortunate to take some photos with some of the other cosplayers at Comic Con who stopped by for a photo opportunity.
Comic Con is also the first time we are showing Bayonetta as a playable demo for consumers outside of E3 and the response has been fantastic. People have been lining up to play the demo the entire show and there really hasn’t been a time when a controller isn’t in the hands of new or returning Bayonetta fan. While the demo stations were pretty packed all day, we still saw people walking down the aisles and working their way into the booth to get a shot at the game.
Rounding out the night our night was two very special events for the Bayonetta community. To kick it off we had a Bayonetta panel running with special guests from PlatinumGames to discuss Bayonetta’s design. I was only able to catch a few minutes of the presentation and handed out some passes to our Community event, which followed directly after the panel at the Hard Rock Café. The panel featured Bayonetta Producer Yosuke Hashimoto and Character Designer, Mari Shimazaki, as well as message from Hideki Kamiya taped prior to the show. G4TV was on hand to offer a live blog and GameTrailers was also in attendance to capture it in full. At the time of this posting, GameTrailers hasn’t yet posted their video, but we’ll update once it is added to their site.
While the panel was picking up and the tough questions were answered, I was off to help set up at the Hard Rock for the community event. The event was set to be one of the first community events I’ve been involved with and a chance for PlatinumGames to meet the fans directly and discuss the game they are creating. We also had some special things planned, including a raffle for our fabulous Bayonetta themed Xbox 360 and a score attack contest to award a special prize; one of the Scarborough Faire prop guns from the Bayonetta motion capture sessions.
In addition to the prizes, another brief presentation was made by PlatinumGames to show off some new areas within Bayonetta. First, another message was posted from Hideki Kamiya, welcoming the Bayonetta Community to the event, and wishing everyone a good time. Next, Yosuke Hashimoto and Mari Shimizaki spoke a bit more on Bayonetta and revealed the E3 behind closed doors demo that was previously only show to press. Hashimoto-san was guiding the controls and walked through a level surrounded by fire and molten lava, as Bayonetta navigated through the full 3d landscape across the floor and walls to reach a new boss encounter in a secluded courtyard. The encounter featured two fearsome, well, creatures, that required tactful dodging to enter witch time, or a slow motion state, to gain an advantage and deliver some punishing attacks. Mari Shimizaki then spoke about designing Bayonetta and showed off art from design concepts and renders. One interesting note was how Bayonetta’s hair was not always black, in the early concepts of the character, designs were made in a variety of colors.
After the presentation was completed, the score attack was announced to the crowd. The goal was to get as many halos from downed enemies as possible during a short playthrough on the Bayonetta demo. The rules were simple, players had a chance to log their score and would complete once the first boss was defeated, after 10 minutes were up, or if a death occurred. Since most players hadn’t considered the halos during the demo, the score attack offered a bit of a different strategy on how to be successful. After a few playthroughs and a handful of scores logged, some strategies were being devised and we even had some repeat players looking to update their scores. At the end of the 45 minute session, we had a clear winner with a score of 9300 halos, which is quite a feat indeed. Not only was the score better than anyone at the event, it was also better than the test runs performed at PlatinumGames prior to the event!
Rounding out the event was our raffle for the one and only Bayonetta Xbox 360. The Xbox is completely one of a kind and everyone in attendance had a shot at winning it! This was a big moment, as everyone in the room, myself included, was interested in picking the Xbox up (no, I was not eligible). The basket was revealed, a number pulled, and a Bayonetta fan picked up an awesome Xbox 360! And as you might expect, this was also the moment my camera memory card filled up, so I was not able to post shot of the winner for the blog. We did get some photos from others on the floor, so look for a follow up in the days to come once we’ve all had a chance to recuperate from the show.
Overall, the event and the day was a lot of fun and truly Bayonetta’s day at Comic Con 2009. PlatinumGames was fantastic throughout and I am very thankful that they came out in force to meet the Bayonetta community. We will have more photos from the event and show in another update, thanks to everyone who we met at the show and we hope you enjoy Bayonetta when it releases this January.
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