For my first game of 2010 I played and finished Bayonetta. In my opinion this game is best described as a mixture of Devil May Cry with the added cheesiness of Final Fantasy X-2 thrown in which makes it unique and humorous and lets itself not to be taken too seriously.
You play as Bayonetta who is an Umbran Witch equipped with handguns in both hands and two more attached to her stiletto heels. The Umbran Witches were a powerful and ancient clan of women who were capable of projecting magic to their own ends, fuelled by the power of the Moon, and the Lumen Sages were an equal group comprised of men who worshiped the light and were fuelled by the Sun. Bayonetta teams up with Rodin who provides her with weapons, extra moves, treasures and items such as Herb Lollipops used to replenish your health bar which you will need to replenish at every opportunity because you can only carry 3 small ones and 1 large. At the end of each level you also get a mini game allowing you to trade points for some of the items you can purchase at the store. This is the only way you can hold more than the quota for items unless you are lucky enough to find some in a chest.
The only problems I had with this game is some frame rate issues early on and also the camera isn’t always facing the way you are facing forcing you to slowly turn the camera back round manually. During the game there are a couple of vehicle levels which I feel adds something extra to the game but those who only want to fight hoards of enemies maybe slightly disappointed. The vehicle levels could have been better executed and one in particular goes on a lot longer then necessary.
Graphics are stunning; the different places you visit really improve as you progress through the game. The battle system is easy to pick up as most moves only requite the kick and shoot buttons to pull off combos, those more used to fighting games will progress to the longer harder combos which when executed correctly can make fights a hell of a lot easier. You can build up your combos and release extra powerful moves including torture moves and using your hair to release demons for finishing moves. Later in the game you will learn to transform into animals which will help you fly, jump further and travel faster which is needed in certain areas of the game, but another issue is that you have to click RT twice to change which is also the button used for dodging so when in the heat of battle you will sometimes find yourself changing into an animal instead of dodge.
One important move of the game is Witch Time, this slows down enemies on the screen allowing you to pull of bigger attacks without getting hit, Witch Time comes into effect when you successfully dodge an enemies attack at the latest possible time, you should think about mastering this move as it will be needed throughout this game, Witch Time is your friend!
Also thrown in are mini games which you have to defeat enemies in a certain way or you are stripped of some of your powers, this is against the clock and if beaten you gain self satisfaction, which is the best gift of all (Although I would have preferred an achievement for them)!
The game takes about 12 hours to complete and you will need your wits about you as enemies will come at you thick and fast and some take off a lot of damage. Boss fights are fun but are used time and time again as you travel through the game and there is nothing more frustrating than seeing a boss you defeated come back for the 5th time.