Even as a critically acclaimed cult classic franchise, the Bayonetta games truly earn their rep as M-rated titles. The series follows the titular Umbran Witch as she uses a combination of hellish magic and deadly weapons to mow through armies of angels and demons that relentlessly pursue her. Her never-ending conflict against these hordes is filled with violence, gore, profanity, and a nigh-infamous amount of nudity that has drawn both the ire and the praise of feminist game critics.
And it's true. The series is notorious for having the main character strip naked during gameplay as she uses some of her stronger attacks. As if in response to this controversy, the highly anticipated Bayonetta 3 will implement a new family-friendly mode that players can toggle. Whether you're playing Bayo 3 with someone else in the living room and you want to hide some of the naughtier bits or just feel like the experience could use a lot less gratuitous nudity, here's what to know about this mode.
'Bayonetta 3' has a new family-friendly mode.
We're gonna have to ask you to stay with us as we explain Bayonetta lore and what it has to do with Bayo 3's new mode. As a witch, Bayonetta wields demonic magic that she uses to enhance her attacks. She accesses many of her moves by using her hair as a portal through which her demons can crawl out and aid her in battle. However, she also uses her hair to form her outfit; meaning when she uses her hair as a portal, it comes off of her body, rendering her mostly naked.
Still with us? OK, great.
So of all the things that make the Bayonetta games, and subsequently 3, rated M for Mature by the ESRB, her constant nudity is by far one of the most egregious examples of its rating. As such, the development team at PlatinumGames has implemented a rather delicate alternative for the latest installment.
Enter "Naive Angel Mode." By toggling this option on, Bayonetta's clothes will no longer disappear whenever she uses her hair demon attacks.
All things considered, it's a unique solution to a unique problem. Previous installments in the series have never implemented a mode like this before, even as Bayonetta 2 became a Nintendo exclusive. Whether or not you're comfortable with Bayonetta's nudity, players now have the option to toggle it on or off as they please.
Interestingly enough, fans are already divided over Naive Angel Mode. While some fans are arguing that censorship is ruining the game, others appreciate at least having the option.
"People who are uncomfortable with the sexier mode can turn it off and people who enjoy it can play with it on," one person tweeted. "Everyone wins."
Another fan poked some lighthearted fun at the new mode, tweeting: "Thanks PlatinumGames! Now I can gleefully slaughter enemies using sexual torture devices in the living room without feeling awkward around my parents and young children!"
And they certainly have a point. As far as we know, Naive Angel Mode doesn't do anything to address the violence or profanity in the game. All it covers up is the nudity.
If nothing else, this truly helps the new installment stand out from its predecessors with its family-friendly options.
Bayonetta 3 comes out on Oct. 28, 2022, exclusively for Nintendo Switch.