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Serious Mode is a technique featured in the first Bayonetta game. It is a temporary state of enhanced strength that enables an Umbra Witch to fight at her strongest.

The ability is only activated at certain points during the story of Bayonetta, primarily before a battle against the Auditio, and the player is not able to manually activate it at will without the use of certain accessories.

Umbran Climax, a version of Serious Mode that can be triggered by the player, is featured in the sequel.


Serious Mode is wielded by Bayonetta at certain points in the story in order to battle particular boss characters. It is automatically enabled during the following Chapters:



Bayonetta in Serious Mode using 修羅刃 -Shuraba-

As an automatic "state", Serious Mode causes Bayonetta's hair to become long and flowing instead of from her sleeves, signalling her enhanced strength. In combat, it allows each attack performed to conjure a Wicked Weave that can hit foes multiple times. When using weapons such as 修羅刃 -Shuraba- or Pillow Talk, the Weaves are replaced by powerful slashes or a supercharged blade for the same effect. This greatly increases the amount of damage and combo points that players can earn during the fights where Serious Mode is used, balancing out the impressive size and power of the bosses.

Though not normally able to be triggered by players outside of specific Chapters, the Climax Brace accessory will allow the use of Serious Mode at any point in the game. However, any records created while the Brace is equipped will not be saved.


Jeanne in Serious Mode.

Serious Mode is also seen being used in cutscenes outside of gameplay, such as when Bayonetta attempts to use its power against Balder following his attack on Luka. The Sage is able to dispel it with his counterattack, forcing Bayonetta to fight him normally.

When playing as Jeanne, the same cosmetic and mechanic alterations are in effect as when playing as Bayonetta, though with the differences in combo point modifiers making it easier to rack up even more points during those Chapters.


  • According to the gameplay commentary of Bayonetta from director Hideki Kamiya, Serious Mode was actually not something that was intended from the beginning. During the playtesting phase against boss characters, the developers realised that Bayonetta's damage output was severely lacking when fighting such titanic enemies. The idea of Wicked Weaves for each attack was suggested to combat this.
    • Additionally, the decision to make Bayonetta's hair long during Serious Mode was done intentionally as a reference to the character's earliest concept designs where said hairstyle was the default. Though originally cut because it would frequently cover up the action in normal gameplay, the hairstyle was returned for Serious Mode to explain the abundance of Wicked Weaves.