Designing Bayonetta Part 2 – Jeanne

Bayonetta

Filed: Bayonetta, Community, Games, PlatinumGames

Hello again, everyone. Mari Shimazaki here, back to talk a little bit more about the character design on Bayonetta.

Thank you all so much for the comments on the blog!

Your comments are the source of much happiness here, so everyone on the staff makes sure to read them.

Well, E3 is now over, and I think everyone has finally seen videos of Bayonetta being played. I hope you are looking forward to the game even more now…

Since this is my second blog post on character design, I thought I would write about Bayonetta’s fateful rival, Jeanne.

jeanne_front

I think the only thing that could rival a woman is another woman, which is why we decided early on that Bayonetta’s rival would be female.

I thought about what we could do to make her the antithesis of Bayonetta… With Bayonetta, she carried strongly held, specific design cues such as witches being black with long hair. However, with Jeanne, I was able to freely deviate from those cues despite the fact she is a witch. Bayonetta is known for her long hair, so I felt that Jeanne needed to have some kind of defining trait as well. It became her large lapel. It kinda looks like Pon De Lion, don’t you think? LOL (Note: Pon De Lion is a popular character in Japan.)

Thematically, Bayonetta’s color is black, so to provide symmetry, Jeanne’s color is red. I added the slit-esque accents down the legs of her dress to allow users to easily see her action-game-style movements. The coloring on Jeanne was actually a result of me paying attention to another character’s design. It’s subtle… But maybe you can figure it out? You have to admit, the nice blend of red, black, and silver is cool, right?

jeanne_back

jeanne_back_embro

I also added some faint embroidery on her back.

From a game character design standpoint, having something that really stands out is what you would usually go with; however, we are intentionally avoiding that on this game. All of the characters in Bayonetta share a theme of being “fashionable,” so we try to keep the ornamentation subdued.

Moreover, Jeanne needed to have something moving, or she wouldn’t be very interesting in-game. Thus, I added a long, plume-like accessory on to her guns. Once that was done, Kotegawa-san took over and designed incredibly cool weapons for me.

jeanne_face

I wanted to make Jeanne feel like something out of the 1960s, so she wears rather thick makeup. Her blood red lips and lower eyelashes are the key points to this design. She actually wore her glasses at first; however, I felt it was a bit strange, so I decided to put them on her head instead. While Bayonetta is straight-forward and strong, I designed Jeanne to be a bit of a change-up if you will, with a sense that she is haughty and putting on airs.

To be honest, Jeanne’s design didn’t require a huge amount of effort, so there aren’t any particular incidents that happened during her design to revisit here…

Nevertheless, there you have it, our two witches. Checking around with the team, it seems that Jeanne is overwhelmingly the more popular of the pair. Kamiya-san is also extraordinarily attached to Jeanne. (He even told me exactly what her bust, waist, and hip measurements were.) But to be honest, I personally prefer Bayonetta…

Which one do all of you prefer?

Next time, I hope to blog about designing the other characters in the game.

jeanne_raku

(NOTE: Higher resolution versions of the concept art in this post can be found on the PlatinumGames Inc. Flickr Page)

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36 Comments Add Your Own

zaka Posted on June 27, 2009 at 5:43 am

She is basically vergil, anithesis of dante(bayonetta).

Good to have you guys doing freely whatever you hoped for, i hope it does good sales wise.

I personally am not thrilled and wowed like when i first got DMC or first checked DMC trailer. The problem is this game feels like made in frustration from DMC franchise lost, but its hard to get out of the shadow of dante or do better than dante and vergil.

Also the game would be really good action/adevnture but it doesnt seem to reinvent the genre which kamiya claimed that he wants to(its been 7 years and stuff interview he once did).

RVR- 42 Posted on June 27, 2009 at 6:39 am

:D! Thank you so much for posting this. I love that you all enjoy our comments…I find it so cool and just flatout awesome, that you all really take time to let us get involved. Means so much to us fans! As for Jeanne…I too am starting to like her alot. Red looks good on her, yes? ;) And what you said about Bayo's rival needing to be a woman, because only a woman could rival a woman…I love that. So true too. lol And in case you didn't know on the boards here there seems to be a huge Jeanne following. I, myself, prefer Bayonetta still, though. Looks like we have that in common! Once again thank you so very much!

Pheonix03 Posted on June 27, 2009 at 7:49 am

Truly excellent design work Shimazaki-san!!! The originality and style of Bayonetta and Jeanne really stand out, and I'm really impressed by how you think of how she will look in battle, and thus you added her awesome plume ornaments on her guns.

As for your question. I prefer Bayonetta. Jeanne is amazing, while Bayonetta is simply epic!!

gpsato Posted on June 27, 2009 at 8:40 am

I saw this at Bayo-blog, she's beatiful i like her also, but I still prefer Bayonetta aahah. I loved the concept of Jeanne.

And I'm happy that you like our comments ( and as always my comments are so strangers lol )

karmacoma Posted on June 27, 2009 at 8:59 am

Excellent art~! The Dante influence is obvious, but it's cool. It's little side references like that that make the game more enjoyable.

Personally, I prefer Bayonetta as well, but Jeanne seems cool.

txGreg Posted on June 27, 2009 at 10:25 am

Thanks so much for these ongoing posts – very cool to see these "behind the scenes" glimpses.

Hmmm – I like 'em both, but Bayonetta's had longer to grow on me. I don't foresee Jeanne usurping B's place in my heart. I can't tell you how much I look forward to getting my hands on this game. With the price increase this generation, I've waited on most games to drop before buying them. At this point, I don't see Bayonetta being one of those – I'm pretty certain it will be a day 1 purchase.

SonicTHP Posted on June 27, 2009 at 11:47 am

Amazing character design. All the little details really make the difference, and I think Jeanne is the perfect rival to Bayonetta. You can tell Jeanne has a good design because it's just as easy to imagine a game with her as the protagonist as it is about Bayonetta.

All that said though, I think that I prefer the more subtle Bayonetta personally.

Humberto Posted on June 27, 2009 at 12:49 pm

Red, black and silver? is that Dante, Joe, or Amaterasu? Or maybe all three.

Anyway, I love seeing othier people's creative prosses, It's great. Althiugh I am corious as to why everyone has ether reading glasses or shades.

As to which one I prefer? I have to be honest, the first time I saw Bayonetta or Jeanne I really didn't like their design, maybe because they are so radical and different, but after a while you really beggin seeing the appeal and you can really get in to them. I still like Bayonetta more out of the two.

Marink Posted on June 27, 2009 at 2:48 pm

I like Bayonetta more.

But the game overall looks and sounds awesome.

Can't wait.

And the last picture looks awesome.

FAUNA Posted on June 27, 2009 at 2:49 pm

The art style on this game is the best I have ever seen. Please release a concept art book like the one for Okami.

Phillip Posted on June 27, 2009 at 3:21 pm

Hehe, I'm torn between Bayonetta and Jeanne. On one hand, I tend to lean towards liking the "good guy" (or "good gal," in this case), which definitely seems to be Bayonetta's role. But on the other hand, I like characters that show off and possibly seem a bit overconfident. I think my preference also still leans towards Bayonetta, but it's safe to say both characters seem like they have quite interesting styles and stories to tell.

zacattack214 Posted on June 27, 2009 at 6:26 pm

I DEFINATELY prefer Jeanne, mainly because I love the eyelashes and the lipstick combined with her more angular facial structure, but also I think she is just more attractive overall. Though I do admit, Bayonetta’s costume design is much sleeker and more attractive; this one feels a bit, clown-like to me because of its puffs.

The Baroness Posted on June 27, 2009 at 7:39 pm

I really enjoy your notes on how the characters were designed. There was a lot of care taken to how the looks reflect certain aspects of the character's personality. I hope you can post about other characters!

I love how Jeane looks, but I too am more in love with Bayonetta!

Phantasos Posted on June 27, 2009 at 8:06 pm

While i prefer your original Bayonetta´s sketches, Ms Shimazaki, which i personally find them superior over her 3D model (Much more stylish in my opinion, she looks better in a drawing format), the attractive aspect of Jeanne is that she looks like someone who´s just ready to make your day *very* hard, her smug look in her face is only amplified by the fact that she´s not even wearing her glasses but hangs them on her forehead, which i think was a pretty good decision from you. She look less experimental all in all.

Hope to hear more from you in the future, as i enjoy your artstyle and your Blog post are my favorite so far.

Rizhall Posted on June 27, 2009 at 8:52 pm

I love this design! I think all the subtlety is amazing, but at the same time, it's very over the top, and it's amazing.

I think you drew influences from Dante. She dresses similarly, has white hair and hold the guns almost the same way.

But not only that, but they both seem to have similar attitudes. In DMC3, Dante wears his coat unbuttoned with no shirt on; I think wearing the glasses on the top and having that slit on the leg opening is almost the equivalent.

I don't know which one I like better. I really have to play the game and get to know the characters better before I can say that. I can't wait. =)

baberific Posted on June 28, 2009 at 11:26 am

hmmm…even thoughJeanne's character design is a bit simple……..sometimes, uncomplicated designs can really shine in the end.

The whole 1950's mom and pop feel of her clothing feels like a good fit for bayonetta's rival.
But as for a favorite….Bayonetta herself already has me covered. Anyways, thanx for the awesome character designs!

Crow T. Robot Posted on June 28, 2009 at 4:10 pm

I love that last piece of her. I do like the way her eyelashes are, I've always loved it when women do that. I also love the fact her eyes are also light green *swoon*

But I'm still in love with B.

Thanks for the blog post, I hope you get to post another one on the others soon.

:}

60Hertz Posted on June 28, 2009 at 4:14 pm

I hope she is playable!

hadoota Posted on June 29, 2009 at 6:46 pm

I really enjoy your notes on how the characters were designed. There was a lot of care taken to how the looks reflect certain aspects of the character’s personality. I hope you can post about other characters!

I love how Jeane looks, but I too am more in love with Bayonetta!

suneo Posted on June 29, 2009 at 7:24 pm

great insight to the game! Def lookin forward to this one, but I kinda suck at these games so I hope it's not too difficult to get through lol. Jeanne does look good, but I do like Bayonetta a bit more as well!

Ken Posted on June 29, 2009 at 8:09 pm

Keep up the good work, you are amazing, guys!

I love these behind the scenes for the game, even though they make this wait even more unbearable :)

No, wait, I love you all!

PlayBoy Posted on June 30, 2009 at 9:31 am

Incredible. I love this kind of art! Very retro.

prabu Posted on July 1, 2009 at 4:21 am

Bayonetta is the one I prefer. Excellent work Miss.Shimazaki.

Edsabre Posted on July 1, 2009 at 10:06 pm

I think she looks amazing! However, I have to say I still prefer Bayonetta for her black outfit and long hair.

I love reading these blogs, keep up the good work! ^^

Captain_Falcpwn Posted on July 6, 2009 at 3:40 pm

I love the rivals that go along with the main characters in Clover's games like Waka and Shiranui from Okami, Alastor from Viewtiful Joe and Azel from God Hand. From the opening trailer where you first saw Bayonetta fighting Jeanne I knew that the tradition was going to carry on. I'm sure Jeanne will prove a tough opponent and a fine character.

vincent. Posted on September 11, 2009 at 9:55 am

Jeanne looks like she would be a certain person that you shouldn't mess with…she looks a bit sinister yet with an air of sexyness…in a way. She may even turn out to be the complete opposite of Bayonetta, but who knows? Only the creators, obviously. Lol. But i digress; great work shimazaki-san, i salute you..you are officially my new favorite person. This work is really impressive and really creative. Its absolutely better than my work in many ways…care to take a look??? check it out. distortion-vince.deviantart.com

Chase Posted on April 6, 2010 at 2:14 pm

No, Jeanne is badass and all, but i prefer Bayonetta too. And I'm definitely glad you put Jeanne's glasses on her head instead. Love this game soooo much! I'm trying for the platinum trophy, never gotten one before so I hope I can *fingers crossed*

Asynca Posted on August 20, 2010 at 2:36 am

I prefer Jeanne, but only marginally. I adore the voice actress chosen for her (a perfect level of dry sarcasm, and the lines are just delivered so impeccably), and I found her eye makeup striking and memorable. Also her glasses are awesome (must… resist…. urge… to go to the optometrist and replace my own!). I also appreciate the decision to have a 'sexy' video game character without cartoonishly enormous breasts. The more modest bustline makes her more fashion-model-like in my opinion.

You've done really well to develop likeable, complex characters in the context of such a light-hearted game, and it makes the player wonder about them. The game asks so many questions about Jeanne and Bayonetta's past, I find myself wondering about all the details. A sequel hasn't been mentioned (woe!), but if it were, I would love to know more about their upbringing, and their close relationship.

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