Bayonetta 3 was originally designed as a “semi open-world game” according to games journalist Imran Khan.
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Announced back in 2017 and finally released last week (October 28), rumours about Bayonetta 3 being open-world have constantly followed PlatinumGames’ action/adventure game. Those rumours were partially fuelled by comments made by head producer Atsushi Inaba who, in a 2018 interview, confirmed that missions wouldn’t follow a strict, chronological order.
Now games journalist Imran Khan has claimed that at one point, Bayonetta 3 “was scoped as a semi-open world game.”
Writing on his Patreon, Khan claimed that the semi-open world idea was one of the reasons Bayonetta 3 took five years from announcement to actual launch.
“The design was going to draw more off Astral Chain than NieR Automata, but the idea was that a large hub world would send Bayonetta (or whoever else) to different worlds which would themselves be fairly open,” Khan wrote. “Maybe Super Mario 64 would be a good reference point for this.”
He continued: “There was a lot of work and experimentation on this idea, but it kept falling apart when it came to pacing, and eventually Nintendo wanted them to scale back. It was, I hear, also not particularly well-performing on the Switch hardware either.”
He goes on to claim that there are still “a lot of vestiges of the semi-open world design in the final game.”
New Public Patreon Post: I have COVID, but here's a newsletter about how Bayonetta 3 was once a somewhat different kind of game, the strange racial politics of FFXVI, and how big a Dragon Quest fan is Ichiban Kasuga?https://t.co/7AQ6s4W8k1 pic.twitter.com/s458Xr01zL
— Imran Khan (@imranzomg) November 5, 2022
“The hub world, Thule, is broken up into smaller pieces that Bayonetta and Viola navigate to get into the next major world. The chests were redesigned a bit to be searched for in larger areas and provide a lot more variety to make use of the environment. Even the various weapon transformations were going to play into traversal a bit.”
“I’m of the opinion that if it didn’t work and the developers don’t think it worked, then we’re probably not missing anything huge,” he finished. “Still, PlatinumGames tends not to throw away old ideas, so I would not be shocked if something else gets this treatment later.”