It began development as a crossover game featuring one-hundred Nintendo characters, but this idea was quickly scrapped. Instead, it became a superhero game about one-hundred superheroes (with the player being addressed as the one-hundred-and-first). The Wonderful 101 can be seen as a contrast to PlatinumGames' previous works, as it has a much more vibrant and bold colour palette, and has what might be considered a lighter storyline. It is also heavily inspired by one of Kamiya's older games, Viewtiful Joe, which was a game inspired by tokusatsu films and TV shows.
An updated port of the game, titled The Wonderful 101: Remastered, was the first product to be self-published by PlatinumGames after a successful backing on Kickstarter. It was released on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and PC through Steam in May 2020.
Connections to the Bayonetta series
Since both games were developed by PlatinumGames and are both action games, they share a lot of similarities:
In order to normally unlock them, the player must get specific sets of achievements, known in the game as "bottle caps", as listed here. (See "Hidden Characters" section.)
With the release of Bayonetta 2 in the west, PlatinumGames announced that the game has a special cheat code , dubbed as the "Platinum Code", which players can input to unlock Bayonetta at the very start of the game. However, players must have completed the game for the first time in any difficulty, and have 2,000,000 O-Parts (the equivalent to Halos in the game).
At the start of Operation 001-A, while holding the ZR button, press [↑ ↓ ↑ → ← XBYA]. A small jingle will sound if entered correctly. In the Remastered version of The Wonderful 101, the directional inputs for the code were changed to [↓ ↑ ↓ ← → XBYA]. The ZR button must still be held.
Players are also capable of unlocking Hideki Kamiya himself as a playable character, as "Wonder-Director". His weapon is his sunglasses, but can die in one hit.
- The ranking system is very similar to that of the Bayonetta series. Players are awarded with Consolation Prize, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Pure Platinum medals when completing each segment of a chapter, and after completing a chapter, the scores and medals are calculated and the player is given a Consolation Prize, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, or Pure Platinum statue. Each statue is of one of the characters of the game, and a quick quote will play, just like in the Bayonetta series.
- In some loading screens, the player is given a chance to practice their attacks, similar to Bayonetta's loading screens.
- When the player encounters a new enemy, a screen introducing the enemy will be displayed. However, unlike Bayonetta, the enemy's stats will be given.
- There is a major character named Luka Alan Smithee, an elementary school student who wears a scarf and who believes that his mom is dead. There are many references to Luka from the Bayonetta series.
- They wear similar scarfs.
- They both have similar backgrounds around their parents' deaths. Luka from Bayonetta believed Bayonetta was behind the death of Antonio Redgrave, his father. Luka from TW101 believes his mother Margarita was killed by CENTINELS, the Earth defense army.
- Luka from TW101 also wears a camera around his neck, which is a reference to the Luka from Bayonetta being a photographer and journalist.
- According to the personal profile of Luka from TW101 obtained when Wonder-Goggles is available for play, his mother's full name is "Margarita Redgrave", which indicates that Luka Alan Smithee's true name is Luka Redgrave.
- The "Wonder Jump" segments are incredibly similar to the Witch Time jumping segments.
- Also worth noting is that there is an ability that can be bought from the shop called "Hero Time", which lets the player slow down time when successfully dodging an attack, just like Witch Time.
- The "Kahkoo-regah" portals are reminiscent to the Alfheim portals. Both portals take the player into a different area (the villains' secret bases for the former, and Paradiso for the latter), and the player is given a challenge that they must complete within a time limit.
- On the Game Over screen, the corpse of the character that the player was using is placed underneath a big light, and a skull-and-crossbones icon appears in order to calculate how many times the player has died, just like Bayonetta's Game Over screen. However, in TW101, the character's soul is floating over their body and sobbing, whereas in Bayonetta, Bayonetta's corpse simply appears.
- One of the poses that Wonder-Pink makes in her introduction scene is very similar to the pose that Bayonetta is in on the Japanese cover of Bayonetta.
- The player can find Space Carrots, Space Peppers, and Space Eggplants scattered around each level. These can be used as mixing ingredients to make food that can regain the team's health or Unite Meter, similar to the Bayonetta series' concoction-mixing feature.
- The boss battles with Vorkken are reminiscent to the Jeanne battles in the first Bayonetta, as Vorkken is a recurring boss whose abilities are similar to The Wonderful 100's, and Jeanne is a recurring boss whose abilities are similar to Bayonetta's. Vorkken also joins The Wonderful 100 later on in the game, just like how Jeanne later joins Bayonetta.
- When Wonder-Blue fights Vijounne solo, Vijounne can blow a kiss toward Blue that will temporarily turn him into a puppy if the kiss hits him, and he will not be able to attack when he is in this form. In the first Bayonetta, Jubileus has an attack that will temporarily turn Bayonetta into her younger self if it hits her, and she will not be able to attack in this form.
- One of the later bosses, Gimme, calls The Wonderful 100 "crying baby cockroaches". This is a reference to a line from the first Bayonetta: "If there's two things I hate in this world, it's cockroaches and crying babies. ...Well, a crying baby cockroach would be truly terrible."
- The first Bayonetta's story began at a graveyard, and ended at a graveyard, while Bayonetta 2's begins on a shopping trip, and ends on a shopping trip. The Wonderful 101's story begins on a school bus, and ends on a school bus. In addition, both Bayonetta games ended with Bayonetta and Jeanne fighting more angels, while The Wonderful 101 ends with The Wonderful 101 fighting more aliens.
- During the credits, the player replays short versions of many important battles, and then plays a battle continuing from where the ending left off.
- After the credits, a "Congratulations!" message is displayed, along with a picture containing every character, enemy, and boss, accompanied by an emotional-sounding piano version of a song from the game.
- Upon completing the game, the player is rewarded with a model gallery and concept art gallery.
- Achievement #36 is named "Platinum!" and is earned once the player obtains ten Platinum medals. The first Bayonetta game had an achievement with this same exact name, and same exact way to earn.
- Achievement #62 is named "Nice Try!" and is earned once the player successfully evades an attack ten times. This is a reference to a line Bayonetta says when activating Witch Time. The first game even had an achievement named this, that was awarded once the player activated Witch Time ten times in a row.
- Completing all of the Kahkoo-regah portals gives the player an achievement named "GEATHJERK Slayer", just like how completing all of the Alfheim portals gives the player an achievement named "Angel Slayer".
- Completing half of the Kahkoo-regah portals gives the player an achievement named "GEATH May Cry", which is a reference to both the "Angel May Cry" achievement from the first Bayonetta game (earned when the player completes half of the Alfheim portals), and the Devil May Cry series.
- In Bayonetta 2, it's written in The Hierarchy's description of Valiance that his blade, the "Valiantium Blade" is said to one day "assist a team of over a hundred heroes in saving humanity from an invading evil." This is a clear reference to this game, where one of the protagonists, Wonder-Blue, wields a sword named the "Valiantium Blade" and the game itself, which features one hundred one heroes in total.
- The W101 jingle is used as a newscast jingle in Bayonetta 2.
- A store in Bayonetta 2 is named "Wonder Toys."
- The Masked Lumen's Holy Glaive is strongly similar to Chewgi's double-ended naginata (the Japanese equivalent of a glaive), both of which are wielded by initially silent masked characters that eventually join forces with the protagonists.
- In Bayonetta 2, both Rodin and Bayonetta say "Diplomacy has failed," a line that Wonder-Red commonly uses.
- The description for the schoolgirl outfit in Bayonetta 2 mentions Shirogane High School, a reference to Professor Shirogane and his Shirogane Comet.
- In Bayonetta 2, one of Aesir's attacks involve summoning and hurling a gigantic space particle cannon at Bayonetta that strongly resembles the Shirogane Comet.
- Insidious' back has the same red, glowing pattern that Vorkken's ship does.
- Yagyu's description states if Rodin ever "used this hammer during a fight to save a certain planet in crisis.". This is a reference to his playable appearance in this game, and he also used the golden hammer with the same name.
- Many have compared Loki and child Loptr's appearance to that of Wonder-Black, as they are all young boys with dark skin tone, a cornrow hairstyle, and a symbol on the forehead. They also possesed a power related to time and space.
- The 7 main playable characters of The Wonderful 101 are also included in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U as collectible trophies. Two tracks (listed below) are available:
- "ST01 Roll Out, Wonderful 100!", the stage BGM of Operation 001, is available in the Pilotwings stage.
- Jergingha - Planet Destruction Form, the final battle BGM, is available in Mario Galaxy stage.
- Wonder-Red and Wonder-Blue appear as Spirits in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The two tracks featured in the previous game return.
- Although Wonder-Pink has been frequently compared to Bayonetta, and does make one of Bayonetta's poses, she has more in common with Juliet Starling from Lollipop Chainsaw. Both characters are depicted as cute, sexy, athletic high-school girls who wield weapons that they have given a "girly" theme to (Pink wields a pink whip with a heart on the end, while Juliet wields a pink chainsaw with heart designs), and are both voiced by Tara Strong in the Western releases.
- Bayonetta, Jeanne, and Rodin all use reused voice clips from the first Bayonetta game.
- The characters' designs are changed slightly to give them all black masks instead of glasses.
- As found on Wii U and Nintendo Switch. For PlayStation 4, the order is Triangle, Cross, Square and Circle while holding R2. Using an Xbox controller on PC, the order is Y, A, X, B while holding RT.