- Rodin's shop screen is a fountain of these:
- "Hey, check this out. Whadya buyin'? Heh. Heard that in a game once."
- "If you bring me enough of these Halos, maybe I can buy a ticket to space. Always wanted to be a bald space marine."
- "No matter how much you ask, I'm not puttin' a chainsaw to your arm."
- "Bein' a demon lets me read minds. You're thinkin', "Shuddup and take my halos." Let's do it."
- "Just hold on a sec. I'm playin' this game, and I gotta sprinkle some magic powder on a chicken... Alright. What'll it be?"
- "Diplomacy has failed. Thank goodness capitalism still has its place in Hell. Let's do business."
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- Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance:
- Noatun's alley cats will backflip whenever the player tries to hit them.
- One of Luka's reports is titled "Rules of Nature."
- The climax of Glamor's boss fight, in which Diomedes slices three separate Glamors into several pieces, bears a strong resemblance to the Blade Mode sequences in Revengeance, right down to the slicer being in the same position as Raiden.
- The Wonderful 101:
- Valiance's entry in the Hierarchy of Laguna implies that it's a part-time Wonderful One. Its name could be a reference to the sting of Wonder-Blue's Valiantium Blade.
- When the Masked Lumen vows to finally kill Bayonetta after their previous two fights, she responds "So you're saying diplomacy has failed, then?"
- The final boss of Bayonetta 2 can throw Providence at the player during a cinematic attack.
Capcom and Clover Studio
- Four of Luka's supposed past flingsnote have some... familiar names: Claire, Trish, and Silvia, and Ammy.
- Devil May Cry:
"Flock off, feather-face!" [powers up] "Let's rock, baby!"
- The development team named themselves "Team Little Angels" as a reference to their spiritual predecessors, Team Little Devils.
- Luka's father is named Antonio Redgrave.
- One of the demonic beasts Bayonetta can summon is a reference to Phantom from Devil May Cry. Both happen to be giant demonic spiders filled with lava. Oddly enough, it's portrayed in almost the opposite way; this demon is one of only two demons referred to positively. It is described as curious, rare, and willing to offer treasures or rare knowledge to those who find it, as opposed to the others which are for the most part described as brutal monstrosities.
- Before Bayonetta fights the series' first proper boss, Fortitudo, she tosses out a couple of Dante's most famous lines.
- Enzo shares his name with an offscreen Devil May Cry character who Dante owes money to.
- Yet another Devil May Cry reference: an item Bayonetta can earn is called the "Bracelet of Time", which lets her trigger Witch Time on command. A similarly named "Bangle of Time" appears in the original Devil May Cry and serves a nearly identical purpose (halting enemies while letting Dante move freely). The description itself reads "Eva, a truly extraordinary witch, entered into contract with a legendary dark knight, and then faced the amassed armies of Inferno," which clearly references Dante's mother Eva and his father, the Legendary Dark Knight Sparda.
- Grace & Glory's intro cutscene looks a lot like when the Frosts were introduced during mission 17 in Devil May Cry.
- The bonus weapons for completing the game on any difficulty, the 'Handguns' (non-magical guns similar to Beyonetta's normal guns) look similar to the guns used by characters from the Devil May Cry series; specifically the hand set look like Dante's own Ebony and Ivory, and the heel set look like Luce and Ombra, the guns used by Dante's father. This may also be a subtle Take That! to the DMC series after Hideki Kamiya's departure from the franchise, since these guns are the weakest weapons in the game, being incapable of channeling magic and being referred to by Bayonetta as "cheap toys" in the first game and "on sale" in the sequel.
- Bonus Boss Rodin Turns Red partway through the fight, his visage looking very similar to the concept of the Devil Trigger in Devil May Cry.
- The demons in Inferno drop life essence in the form of red orbs, which have the same monetary value as halos.
- The angels share some major similarities with Mundus, the Big Bad of the First Devil May Cry, being Body Horrific masses of flesh, tentacles and eyes encased in bodies that resemble divine statues. The Cardinal Virtues in particular show off some grisly detail when you damage them enough.
- Bayonetta draws Ammy's facial markings onto Luka's face at one point.
- The Beast Within speed forms all leave behind flowers as they dash. The Masked Lumen's is most blatant, as he morphs into a white wolf that leaves behind very healthy and colorful wildflowers.
- If you beat the game on its hardest setting, you unlock a weapon called Pillow Talk, which is a green, lightsaber-ish sword, and was taken straight out of Okami (including the name), in which it was wielded by Waka during both battles against him. Pillow Talk hosts a charge attack that will extend the blade and increase its power , and both and the Shuraba host a cool but lengthy secret special attack that has Bayonetta perform a clockwise brandish before slicing downwards, unleashing a beam of energy when fully charged. Older fans will realize that these moves and even the weapon itself are brought over from the repertoire of Hayato Kanzaki of Star Gladiator fame. More fun references, Mahavirocana, the demon that inhabits Pillow Talk, is the king of Asura in Hinduism, and Hayato's blade extending move is called Asura, and his downwards energy wave slash is called Engetsu, meaning Full Moon. Even in Okami, Waka unsheathes Pillow Talk in the same fashion as Hayato. Someone down at Platinum must be very proud of Star Gladiator in his resume, and for good reason too, the game was Capcom's first foray into the 3D genre. "Pillow Talk" is also the name of one of the end songs from Devil May Cry, the very first one.
- The Golem boss is basically a magitek version of Yami.
- God Hand:
- Rodin makes a home run on some angels. His animation and the accompanying camerawork are identical to the "Home Run God" move.
- Viewtiful Joe:
- Joe has a headstone in the first game's graveyard, complete with the epitaph of "The Red Hot Home Run Hitter," in a possible Take That! at Capcom for abandoning the franchise.
- Bayonetta shouts an unclear, unsubtitled line in the third chapter of the first game that sounds as much like "Dancin' a-go-go, baby!" as it does "Henshin a-go-go, baby!"
- Bayonetta's After Burner Kick has similar attributes to Joe's Red Hot Kick.
- Street Fighter:
- The Moon of Mahaa-Kahlaa accessory enables the use of Street Fighter III's parrying system, complete with its method of use (move toward an incoming attack shortly before it hits).
- The series Bonus Boss has a signature move similar to Akuma's Shun Goku Satsu, complete with a blank screen and multiple hits shown. It drops your health down to a single point, but kills instantly when you have less than 50% health left. Fuck.
- Decoding some of the angelic text on Sapientia will reveal that he runs on Sega arcade hardware.
- Sega has had a long relationship with Evangelion. If they're making a game with angels as the bad guys, they might as well reference it.
- Sonic the Hedgehog:
- You get bonuses for collecting halos, similar to how you collect gold rings in the Sonic games.
- The poor sap whose funeral baits the angels in the first game's Prologue is known as "Eggman."
- Eating a Yellow Moon Lollipop will give you a coloration and aura almost identical to Super Sonic's. Eating a Bloody Rose Lollipop gives you Super Shadow's aura and color.
- In the initial cutscene to Chapter I in the sequel, Bayonetta is seen standing on the wings of a red plane akin to how Sonic usually travels on the Tornado.
- One of the unlockable attacks is the Tetsuzanko, a shoulder check commonly used by Akira in Virtua Fighter: if you finish a verse with a Pure Platinum rank and use it as the final attack, Bayonetta will quote Akira's Catch Phrase — "You're ten years too early!" in Japanese, regardless of whether her English or Japanese voice actor is speaking. By extension, it references Street Fighter III's Yun, who performs the move similarly, and Sylvia's Tetsuzanko from Viewtiful Joe 2, both of which followed.
- At the start of Isla Del Sol's Unexpected Shmup Level: "Welcome to my Fantasy Zone! Get ready!"
- Fantasy Zone:
- Back in the SMS days, the Sega-sponsored anime Zillion was popular enough to spawn two video games, laser tag merchandise, and more. And so we have the Bazillions.
- The symbol on Bayonetta's chest, when combined with the crescent-moon shape cut out of her catsuit, forms the symbol of the Oboro clan from the PS2 Shinobi game.
- Bayonetta apparently has Alex the Kid to thank for chartering Enzo's plane to Noatun.
- World of Chaos, the prologue level of Bayonetta 2, was called Jet Set Holiday in the E3 2013 build.
Other video games
Recreations of video game sounds, logos, and gameplay
- In one of the early scenes where Bayonetta gets a ride from Enzo, the radio in Enzo's car is playing "Magical Sound Shower", one of the music tracks from the original OutRun.
- Certain levels in Bayonetta have spiced-up remixes of old Sega tunes: "Splash Wave" from OutRun, the boss theme from Fantasy Zone, "Wiwi Jumbo" and the main theme from Space Harrier, and the main theme from After Burner. The lead-up to Angel Attack will play a random snippet from these themes, but holding down the left shoulder buttons in the cutscenes before those levels will swap out the remixes for their chiptune equivalents.
- The nametag on Jeanne's "Cutie J" costume references Viewtiful Joe, and alters her taunt pose accordingly when used with her Pillow Talk equivalent.
- A Chain Chomp makes a guest appearance as the only leg weapon in Bayonetta 2. The LP that Rodin uses to lure it out is the theme from Bob-Omb Battlefield, and the Umbran Elegance that goes with it will give Bayonetta and Jeanne custom hats and mustaches based on Mario and Luigi.
- Based on its description, Rodin encountered the Chain Chomp in Kyoto, which is where Nintendo of Japan's headquarters are located.
- The Nintendo costumes come with authentic gameplay and sound effects based on their source character:
- The Hero of Hyrule costume plays sound effects from The Legend of Zelda or The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, gives Bayonetta a permanent parry option thanks to the Hylian Shield on her wrist, and replaces Shuraba with the light-elemental Master Sword.
- The Star Mercenary costumes can play sounds from Star Fox or Star Fox 64 and lifts wholesale gameplay from Star Fox during the Jetfighter Assault level, complete with homing charge lasers and smart bombs replacing the slash attack.
- The Galactic Bounty Hunter suit gives Bayonetta sounds from the Metroid Prime trilogy and Jeanne sounds from the original Metroid 1 and Super Metroid. Additionally, the double jump and Beast Within dash are replaced with a Screw Attack and morph ball (including bombs in Bayonetta 2), and the "fire" button instead fires Samus's arm cannon and Charge Shot, complete with pose.
- The Princess costumes come with coin sounds and fresh Bowser roars from the Super Mario Bros. franchise.
- The Bayonetta soundtrack uses a similar naming scheme to the soundtrack of Evangelion by sorting its menu, cutscene, and stage music with abbreviations and numbers ("GM01 Chapter Start", "EV02-1 Prologue", "ST01 The Falling Military Transport" for example).
- The Unexpected Shmup Level stages usually come with a logo based on classic video games:
- The font for the display in the motorbike section control instructions? Straight out of Hang-On, Sega's 1985 motorbike-based classic.
- "Missile Operation" references After Burner. Before the miniboss fights in this level, the player will be warned that an intruder has penetrated their force fields.
- The Ithavoll Building's cannon instructions reference an old Sega arcade game variously called "Strategic Defense Initiative," "SDI," or "Global Defense."
- "Climax Horse" references Excite Bike.
- "Jetfighter Assault" uses the After Burner logo again, and its gameplay and user interface become a Star Fox shout-out if the Star Mercenary costume is equipped.
- The news channel at the start of Bayonetta 2 borrows a jingle from the Wonderful Mart.
- One of the unlockable weapons was forged with the soul of an insane Vietnam veteran named Lt. Col. Kilgore, and shares his name. And Jeanne's version of the same weapon is filled with the malice of Col. Slade.
- "Tentacles... why did it have to be tentacles?!"
- The scene where the giant Beloved grabs Cereza and tries to take her is quite reminiscent of King Kong, with the giant monstrosity falls for a girl smaller than his hand.
- "Oh, what a lovely tea party!" Leave it to Bayonetta to reference Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back and her Alice in Wonderland motif simultaneously.
- According to Loki in the sequel, you don't just walk into Fimbulventr.
- Antonio Redgrave would like you to know that Rodin's bar is a wretched hive for all sorts of scum and villainy.
- Some of Bayonetta's character and dialogue heavily reference Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
- The names of the in-game worlds, Paradiso, Purgatorio, and Inferno are a reference to Dante Alighieri's The Divine Comedy.
- The bow weapons for Bayonetta and Jeanne are called Kafka and Samsa respectively.
- When demanding that Loki come with her into Inferno, Bayonetta says that the world "is dark and full of terrors".
- One of the Vigridian shops with signs written in angelic script is named Lyra's Café.
- "I've got a fever and the only cure is more dead angels."note
- One to Chappelle's Show, which can only be heard after getting a Pure Platinum trophy as Jeanne: "It's a celebration bitches!"
Anime and Manga references
- According to this video, the Let's Dance, Boys! dance number was inspired by the "Nowadays" number in Chicago, with Bayonetta and Jeanne's moves being inspired by Roxie and Velma.
- Vigrid has a lot in common with Vatican City, complete with well-armed security forces, people openly walk around in holy dress, and so on.
- Death Dealer Loki has a necklace that looks very similar to the Millennium Puzzle.
- Performing the PPPPP combo with Sai Fung will make Bayonetta let out Bruce Lee's signature Kiai.