Cherry and the Lost Demon
Accustomed to a fast-paced style of games, where combat comes first, Platinum Games surprises us with a new entry into the world of Bayonetta. But this time in a totally different mode, where the way of telling the story comes first and the complexity of the gameplay is not the first thing on our mind.
Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon, is then, a prequel to what we know as Bayonetta in its normal line.
Cherry, Cheshire and its origins
From the first moment, as soon as we press A to start playing, we find ourselves with a good sample of what the game will be like. Well, from the outset we begin to explain who Cherry is, where she comes from, and what her purpose is.
The game, then, introduces us to the young Cherry, the daughter of a forbidden relationship between a sage from Lumen and a witch from Umbra, the two races that dominated history at that time. And this is where we are introduced to Cereza, who desperately wants to become as powerful as possible to rescue her mother from the prison in which she is for having discovered her love affair with this sage, since a relationship of this type is outlawed.
Then, we are given a Cherry who is being trained by her mentor, Morgana, but since we are talking about a little girl, our protagonist is not trained enough to be able to face all the dangers that exist in the world.
This results in frustration with Morgana, and after a training session where things don’t go her way, Cereza is grounded. Naturally, our protagonist doesn’t like that, because she wants to rescue her mother as soon as possible.
Thus, after a dream sequence in which a mysterious child tells Cereza that the power she seeks lies in the depths of the Forest of Avalon, the young witch wanders into the night, abandoning Morgana, and immediately finding himself in all sorts of trouble as soon as he enters the forest.
And it is here where Cereza tries to summon an infernal demon to be able to protect herself from the malevolent and mischievous fairies that live in this forest, and although Cereza fails, if she manages to summon a demon, the one that lodges in the body of her stuffed animal Cheshire.
This is where the game really begins.
A perfectly told story
The game’s narration takes the form of a story where each of our adventures constitutes a chapter. And where there is also a narrator who, as if it were a story, tells us what is happening. This narrator is phenomenal, and she manages to capture the naturalness of the story very well.
Now, the adventures of Cherry and Cheshire can be played with two or with one person. If we choose to play alone, we will have to use the two protagonists together. One with the right stick, and one with the left stick. That means a challenge to those of us who do not have the best coordination in the world.
But if you choose to play in pairs, then things will be a bit simpler, as each player can make use of one joy con to be able to control a character, where each one has its advantages.
If we choose to control Cherry, then we will have control of the narrative, in addition to using the powers of the young witch, which consist of trapping our enemies using magic. All of this is achieved through the clever implementation of rhythm points, where we have to use the stick in a defined sequence.
Now, if we use Cheshire, things change. Our friend can switch between Unleashed mode, in which he can stomp and destroy enemies and barriers depending on the powers we have activated, and Embrace mode, in which he is reduced to his toy form, allowing Cherry to use it to hit enemies, jump through small gaps or launch it towards unreachable platformsin addition to recovering magic more quickly.
The game constantly presents us with puzzles, but the puzzles never feel impossible to solve, far from it. Most consist of simply making use of Cheshire with one of her elemental abilities to defeat an enemy or reach places unreachable for Cherry.
As we progress, we then discover that Cherry needs to find and destroy four elemental cores and each of them will imbue Cheshire with a new elemental form that he can use to solve puzzles and fight different enemies that get progressively more difficult and difficult. they can only be attacked with certain items.
Skills and challenges cleverly presented
As we go deeper and deeper into the forest following in the footsteps of the great white wolf, we also need more skills. So the game presents us with a skill tree system where we can exchange the elements that we are collecting for new skills.
This is where we will be able to make Cheshire, for example, after attacking, finish defeating his enemies with a bite, or that he can dodge attacks. The same for Cherry, who will be able to tie up her enemies for longer, or invoke new powers.
We also have the possibility of using the cauldron to make potions that restore our magic or health. This becomes essential if we choose to play on a difficulty that is not the simplest. Well, this can be changed at any time if you have problems with some game challenges or some enemies.
Finally we have the so-called Tir Na Nog, which are nothing more than small Zelda-style dungeons that will challenge us in the form of puzzles that we have to solve and that also include some battles. By completing them, we managed to unlock a special chest full of goodies and special items.
These objects, which can also be found throughout the levels as you explore them, are the ones that we have to gather in order to prepare potions in the cauldron to boost Cheshire and Cherry’s attacks.
Don’t expect, however, that the challenges will be very complex to solve, because the game is not meant for you to spend hours thinking about how to pass one of these Tir Na Nog. Their difficulty lies in simply your ability to solve them in the shortest possible time.
Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon is a very different game from what we are used to from our favorite witch. And it is that the game constantly takes you by the hand to be able to present you with new challenges and new adventures,
Gone is the Bayonetta 3 combat, where we have to defeat hordes of enemies to continue the story, because here the important thing is to enjoy each of the challenges that are given to us, in addition to understanding the history of Cereza.
The visual style is also one of the big pluses as well. We have consistency in style, and we really feel like we’re reading a story at all times. The game, then, is clearly a testament to what it’s like to think outside the box. And he does it very well.
Perhaps, yes, it is a bit expensive for what it offers. Well, we are talking about a little more than 10 hours of play that we can enjoy if we are not waiting to collect everything that is offered to us in an alternative way.
Its price of USD $60 is also one of its negative points, and that is that, for me, that type of price should be saved for games that are essential on a console. Cherry and the Lost Demon is not, but it is a very good testament to what Platinum Games can do when they set out to do something different.
Anyway, there is a demo of the game that can be downloaded from the eShop where we can play the first 3 chapters of the game. That’s enough to give you an idea of the game in its entirety, since at no point do things change radically from what is offered to us in those first hours.
Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon is, in short, a very good game that can be enjoyed by both one and two players. But personally, I think doing it together is better than alone.