The Weapons of Bayonetta – 2

Bayonetta

Filed: Bayonetta, Community, Games, PlatinumGames

Hello all, Bayonetta weapon designer (all of them) and CG modeler Muneyuki “Johnny” Kotegawa here.

It has been a long time since I last hit this blog, but I would like to share the story behind the star of the most recent trailer, Jeanne’s guns, as well as some of the other weapons that appear in the game.

These weapons, All 4 One, were designed with the concept that they would be given to Bayonetta’s rival, Jeanne. Of course, she wouldn’t be a good rival character unless her weapons weren’t greater than or equal to what the other one holds. However, keeping them two similar would be boring. I kept all that in mind while I designed.

Just as I mentioned previously, I start by thinking about real guns. Bayonetta’s guns are based on the simplest, semi-automatics possible since she uses them for melee attacks; however, her rival’s guns would have to be based off of the most complicated guns possible and then taken to their extreme limits of power!  With that in mind, I based Jeanne’s guns on a Parabellum Pistol, AKA a Luger. (I just like them and…)

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I gave the front end of the gun a quad shape, with that nice heavy sense of weight, while maintaining the delicate inch-worm style toggle and breach mechanism, and still making sure it had the heft for use as a melee weapon. Furthermore, even though a lot of guns say they are short recoil, when you actually fire them, they still kick back a little bit. This is something I preserved in my design, although it will not be something you really notice during the action of the game. (It’s a little thing that I was picky about.)
Just like Scarborough Fair, All 4 One has the same type of crystal in its center allowing it to magically summon bullets. The guns can also use their standard magazine/barrel mechanism to fire. Finally, I’ve added a high heel silhouette onto the knuckle guard.

While Bayonetta has her easy to identify long hair trailing from both arms to accentuate her action, Jeanne has short hair, so we added long feathers to her guns. Shimako wrote about this previously. I used the long ostrich feathers used during Carnival as reference and designed the accents. For me, the feathers are from angels that she has killed.

As for the coloring of the weapons, just as with Bayonetta, we needed to pick a color that would pop out from her limbs and be easy to recognize. Thus, we picked silver to contrast against her red clothing. However, normal silver would overlap with her head and the feathers attached to the guns, so I adjusted the colors to give the guns more of a stainless steel, blue tint.
To add a “clean” sense to the guns, I added ivory to the grips and gold accents to the inlays.
…Now that you mention it, I think I’ve seen guns like this before…

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This design was pretty much OK’d on the first, from-scratch design. Like I mentioned last time, once you have a design in place, things are much easier to lock down. In Shimako’s second post, Designing Bayonetta 2 – Jeanne, she mentions the same thing. (Although, I think we might have been in a pretty pitched battle, comparatively speaking…)

Out of curiosity, have you checked out the Custom Shot Bar “The Gates of Hell” that you can visit on our Bayonetta.jp website? Bayonetta’s guns, Scarborough Fair (which I talked about last blog), and Jeanne’s All 4 One were both made by The Gates of Hell’s very own Umibozu, Rodin. All 4 One is taken from D’Artagnan’s tale of the Three Musketeers, and their famed phrase, “Tous pour un, un pour tous.”(All for one and one for all.) Even though Jeanne and the gun’s name are of French origin, the guns are based off a German design. This must be Rodin’s personal preference coming through.
Finally, Rodin tends to inscribe sentences on his weapons along with his maker’s mark and brand mark. I think it would be fun if you tried finding them once you get the full game.

Ultimately, for Rodin, making guns for both sides of a rivalry is really about seeing how they hold u on the battlefield. You will have to see how it unfolds in the game to find out the answer!

As for the other weapons, I have the sneaking suspicion that Rodin will be explaining them further from now on, and many of them should be added to the Action section of the Japanese website. With that in mind, I’d like to introduce a few of the other weapons in the game.

Shuraba
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Put aside your idea of Shuraba being a homonym for the Japanese word meaning “site of a bloodbath,” and instead think of things this way – You definitely want a close combat weapon, and if Bayonetta is going to have a blade, it wouldn’t be a sword, it would be a katana. That why I designed this Japanese style sword for her. It isn’t even a normal katana. I tend to like things that are a bit underhanded, so while Shuraba may appear to be a normal katana, the tip of the blade actually has a notch in it. (It’s a little bit different than any katana you’d find in the real world…)
The enormous hand guard is actually the mark of the witches, while the grip has a special feature included in it that you only get to see during a combo.

Kulshedra
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Bayonetta’s weapons, including Kulshedra, all have something sealed inside of them. Naturally, the whip Kulshedra ended up having a snake sealed inside. As you can see, it appears to be a cobra-esque demon, but in reality, it can change into numerous types of serpents depending on the situation. Maybe Kulshedra isn’t the only one of its kind. You know, there are tons of different types of whips, and Bayonetta is a bit of a sassy, mean girl…

Lt. Col. Kilgore
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(Almost) Everyone loves tonfas. These were designed as rocket launchers that traded the ability to launch powerful attacks for a long period of vulnerability. You can, of course, equip these on your legs for a Tonfa Kick, or two.
We call this weapon a rocket or grenade launcher out of convenience; however, I did things like making it’s rear end an amalgamation of RPG-like recoilless artillery and a rocket launcher. Furthermore, if you are using this weapon, you can also attempt risky, long-range melee attacks. Finally, I wanted to make the front end stand out, so I added some rifling to the end of the barrel.

There are quite a few other weapons in Bayonetta; from the outrageous to the sublime, to some weapons that are borderline jokes. As Kamiya-san has previously written, we’ve made it so there are enough weapons that you won’t get bored with playing around even if it is your second, or even higher, run through the game. All you replayability hounds have something in store for you!

In my next blog, you can look forward to learning more about one of the highlights of Bayonetta – Torture Attacks!

Now to answer some questions from our global blog:

DancingRobot:
I think it is safe to say that the weapons in Bayonetta, especially Scarborough Fair and All 4 One for Bayonetta and Jeanne respectively, are part of their characters. (Especially Jeanne, whose silhouette would change drastically if she wasn’t holding her weapons.)
With these two weapons, I think it is better to show how they tie in with the character to make things look cool rather than just putting them out there by themselves. As for a model viewer… Look forward to the final game!

Black Chamber:
I took a look at the forum threads. The report you guys created from just looking at the trailer was incredibly detailed! I couldn’t believe you guys interpreted the trailer that much!
What you mentioned about the weapon naming and engravings is true. It does have that classic Hideki Kamiya sense, with JP and I coming up with the detailed ideas to flesh it out.
Scarborough Fair and Bayonetta’s past, Rodin in the Gates of Hell, or even that “famous poet,” are all places where Kamiya-san specifically chooses to leave his mark. Also, the way we placed the seal/engravings on Scarborough Fair and All 4 One are a little bit different.
Anyways, there are lots more of these little easter eggs in the game, so look forward to hunting them down!

MonkeyMagic:
Since I am such a gun nut, even when I get to work on a fictional gun, I start thinking about how it would actually work, and the design ends up becoming something a bit dull. Those are the times when I become envious of people who can put aside realism and design something purely for the fact that it looks cool.
You have to be picky about where you are picky, right. But even then, I will probably keep throwing in the little things you can’t see, like the short recoil on All 4 One.
Also, when you combine a gun and a sword, the idea of a gun blade is such an overpowering one, it is really hard to come up with some sort of original design! But I would love to take up the challenge and design that type of weapon in a way that doesn’t make you instantly think gun blade.

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

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30 Comments Add Your Own

FAUNA Posted on September 17, 2009 at 8:34 pm

I love the weapon design in this game! It's especially cool how she wields a katana. I noticed how during the 'flashback sequences', the witches have different guns. I'll say this until it happens: bless us with a full-fledged real artbook (not postcard sized!).

Humberto Posted on September 17, 2009 at 8:45 pm

I love the weapon's design and I can sertainly respect the artistic skill that it takes to come up with original designs. Keep up the good work.

RVR- 42 Posted on September 17, 2009 at 9:38 pm

Tha katana and those Tonfas are looking kickass. Keep up the amazing work P*. Thanks for sharing this with us Mr. Kotegawa!

baberific Posted on September 17, 2009 at 9:51 pm

Wow…I must say…I never would have even imagined RPG type Tonfas….I mean, CHRIST!!! THAT'S FREAKING AWESOME! Not to mention that with a name like Lt.Col. Kilgore….fear will be inspired for many days to come.

Both the shuraba and the kulshedra look sophisticated and new….I look forward to seeing more and more art before the arrival of this glorious title!

Thanx again, for sharing all the crazy info Johnny!!

Black Chamber Posted on September 18, 2009 at 12:22 pm

I am happy to hear I was correct about the guns and what they represent. I love a weapon with some history behind it and Hideki Kamiya always delivers the goods in that aspect!

I look forward to discovering even more Easter Eggs!

DancingRobot Posted on September 18, 2009 at 5:11 pm

Hey look I'm on there! But more importantly, a model viewer! I always like looking at these kind of things in a bit more detail. I can't wait. I hope we'll be able to zoom WAY in. I always think its fun to see every pixel on it. Maybe I'm just weird.

But not to criticize, do you guys really think a katana is appropriate considering how very European the setting seems to be? Don't get me wrong, I think its a beautiful weapon, I just wonder if the context of the setting fits the roll of having a Japanese style sword.

FAUNA Posted on September 19, 2009 at 2:21 pm

That's what I love about this game is the mix of styles. My favorite art direction is gothic fantasy (we need more games in this style!). And then there's a katana! Hell yeah! (It is the best sword in the world). Why make everything fit into a certain set of 'rules'? I say anything goes. A rotating model viewer for the characters would be greatly appreciated as well! (Oh yeah, and a mode to replay the cutscenes). Cheers P* Games.

Crow T. Robot Posted on September 19, 2009 at 5:56 pm

German Lugers are pretty awesome. A revolver type gun would be awesome, I've always liked those.

I hope there are more swords in this game, like a yataghan. I love those. oh oh or an Espada…

:}}}}

enozth Posted on January 16, 2010 at 9:42 pm

Great design i like the weapons it look like smooth but have more power.

albion Posted on April 22, 2010 at 12:25 am

Where do i get the two pieces of hymm LPs to get the Kulshedra?

biking games Posted on June 11, 2013 at 11:51 pm

Tha katana and those Tonfas are looking kickass. Keep up the amazing work P*. Thanks for sharing this with us Mr. Kotegawa

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