Video game vixens become wickedly witchy action figures…
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Released earlier this year, Bayonetta is Devil May Cry-style third-person action title released for the Playstation 3 and XBOX 360 from Sega. In the game, players control Bayonetta, an “Umbra Witch” who awakens after a 500-year slumber to an unfamiliar world and amnesia that drives her to search for a mystical object called “The Right Eye” which she hopes will help her regain her memories. During her quest she is confronted several times by another Umbra Witch named Jeanne, who acts as Bayonetta’s rival and who is an unlockable, playable character in the game. Both of these shape-shifting, gun-toting witches are now captured for the first time as entries in Square-Enix’s continually impressive, hyper-detailed Play Arts Kai figure series.
The packaging for the Bayonetta figures keeps with the design of the Play Arts Kai figure line with no J-hook and a large window in the front and smaller die-cut windows on the sides. The overall color scheme of the box is red and black with the moon being used as a prominent graphic both on the insert and the back of the package. Both boxes have images of the enclosed figure on the side and well as multiple images on the back of the box. The figures are kept safe and secure on the inside of the box in plastic trays with form-fitting tops.
Sculpt & Articulation:
Square-Enix has taken all the style and flair of the game and it’s character designs and has translated them fairly accurately to action figure form. Both girls have long bodies and elongated limbs that make their heads appear to be a tad small, but keep with the game’s art direction. Both girls have over 25 points of articulation, with Bayonetta having a bit more due to her cape.
Bayonetta clothes are apparently made from her hair and it shows by the lined and textured surface of her one-piece, corseted outfit. She has what appear to be zippers running down her arms, from her breasts to her ankles, and from her neck and down her legs on her back. Her back is open, while her front is mostly closed except for a crescent shaped opening over her breasts. The moon symbol is used throughout the figure on the ends of the zippers, and her various medallions. All of these small features are perfectly sculpted and offer a lot of detail to enhance the look of the figure She also has long, cape like extensions coming from her arms that are not only articulated, but are bendable for posing. Her face is done perfectly, with a small trademark smirk and glasses that don’t overtake her face.
Jeanne, like Bayonetta, features a unique outfit with a fantastic amount if detail that really sets her apart. Her jumpsuit seems a little more bulky than B.’s, and features snaps instead of the zippers of the other woman. Her snaps run from her chest and down her leg in the front and from her behind down her leg in the rear. The snaps are opened on her legs to reveal and mesh texture on both sides. Jeanne features sculpted fur on her wrists and around her neck and a long bow on her lower back. A tree-like design is sculpted as a relief on the back of her outfit and looks similar to the design on the medallion at her neck. Like Bayonetta, Jeanne has glasses, but hers are propped on her head, contrasting her short, slicked back hairstyle.
The paint is applied perfectly on both girls and adds to the detailed sculpting and sets the two apart with colors that contrast much like their personalities. Bayonetta is overly black with gold accents throughout and red highlights that hint at her connection to Jeanne. All of the small details such as her jewelry, medallions, weapons and zippers are all painted beautifully. Jeanne is primarily red with black fur and silver mesh that matches her hair. All of her accents are silver to B.’s gold ones and all of her small details are just as crisp. One thing she has that Bayonetta doesn’t is the benefit of some additional airbrush work that brings out some definition and form in her outfit.
Both Bayonetta and Jeanne come with the same amount of accessories and each with a second set of hands. Bayonetta’s four guns, known as Scarbourough Fair, feature two barrels and intricately sculpted details including a different colored jewel and keychain symbol on each one, representing the four herbs Parsley, Thyme, Rosemary, and Sage. Two guns are wielded in her hands, while the other two slide into grooves on her ankles. One issue I came across is that the “foot” guns don’t want to stay in their holders and fall right out with any sort of posing. Jeanne has similar weapons, known as All4One, that are a little more sleek and classy looking than Bayonetta’s. The biggest noticeable difference with Jeanne’s guns are the long feathers that hang from the butts. The handheld guns’ feathers attach via metal rings that allow for full movement and the feathers themselves are bendable for enhanced poseability.
Fans of Bayonetta will not want to miss the first, and perhaps some of the only collectibles to be based off the characters in the game. The quality and detail that Square-Enix offers is top-notch and won’t be easily outdone by another company. The Bayonetta Play Arts Kai figures are available now at many of your favorite online retailers and from Square-Enix’s online shop for around $39.99 each.
Review Samples courtesy of Square-Enix
Review & Photos by Michael Klein