The just-released Bayonetta prequel side-story, Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon, is actually really good, a return to form after the disappointment of Bayonetta 3, as I noted in my impressions yesterday. But apparently I was off base in positing that it was intended to placate lore-starved Bayonetta players like myself, because her creator, PlatinumGames’ Hideki Kamiya, said that actually, the game’s purpose is to solve Japan’s low birthrate problem.
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Last year, according to a recent Bloomberg report, Japan produced the lowest number of newborn babies since 1899. The Guardian adds that the downward trend was so dire that prime minister Fumio Kishida said the country should focus its attention on “policies regarding children and child-rearing.” Turns out the conservative prime minister has an unlikely ally in the form of Hideki Kamiya, the creator and supervisor of the Bayonetta series. As far as Kamiya is concerned, Japan’s low birthrate numbers will be a thing of the past once gamers develop baby fever after playing Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon.
Like a scene out of Canadian comedian Nathan Fielder’s Comedy Central show, Nathan For You, Kamiya, made a flowchart of a Twitter post detailing how, in his mind, the release of Cereza would lead to a baby boom among players. It should be noted that this post was made the day Cereza was released on the Nintendo Switch. Translated via Google, Kamiya’s PSYOP in full:
- Play ‘Cereza and the Lost Demon’ ↓
- I want a child like Cereza ↓
- An unprecedented marriage boom is coming ↓
- The problem of declining birth rate will be solved ↓
- Everyone happy
As a brain-rotted Bayonetta player, I find it ironic that Kamiya is willing to jokingly(?) credit Cereza for a boost in Japan’s birthrate considering the circumstances of the forbidden child’s birth led to the incarceration of her mother, Rosa. Never shall an Umbran witch and a Lumen sage “purple” at a school function.
Should Cereza and the Lost Demon fail in sparking a boom in Japanese marriages and babies, there will be other opportunities to inception the idea of conception among “Bayonutters” because PlatinumGames wants to turn the Cereza platform-puzzle game into its own series.
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In an interview with Famitsu (translated by Video Games Chronicle), Kamiya and Nintendo producer Makoto Okazaki revealed that they’d like to continue building out Bayonetta lore by possibly making Cereza an ongoing series.
“We would like to expand the world of the series with a new collection of games,” Kamiya told Famitsu. “We are currently working towards that, and [Bayonetta Origins director] Tinari-san and I have been discussing what we would like to do next. We haven’t spoken with Nintendo about it yet.”
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Piggybacking off of Kamiya, Okazaki said plans to continue the Cereza series aren’t “concrete” at the moment but for now he thinks it would “be best to listen to the opinions of everyone who played this game and consider where [they] should go next.”
Here’s hoping that the Venn diagram of players wanting more Cereza games actually coincides with couples in Japan being interested in having children in this economy.