The lights are on
Now a cult classic in the video game world, Ubisoft’s Beyond Good & Evil debuted to critical acclaim, but its poor sales hindered its initial trilogy plans. In the decade since its original release, however, the game has earned both a devoted following and an HD remake on XBLA and PSN.
First hinted at with a teaser trailer in 2008, a sequel to Beyond Good & Evil has been in development for many years now. Series creator Michel Ancel has since returned his focus to the project, having been occupied developing Rayman Origins and Legends. According to an interview with Eurogamer, Ancel’s vision for the sequel is so grand that it couldn’t have been achieved on the consoles present during initial development in 2008. He’d been waiting for the next-gen systems to be announced before doing more work on the game.
Now that those consoles are here and BGE 2’s development is hopefully underway, our minds are brimming with ideas of what this sequel could bring to the series.
Please note that this article does contain spoilers for Beyond Good & Evil.
More To The Story And Characters
It’s easy to get attached to BGE’s likable protagonist, Jade, and her allies, which is impressive considering the relatively short length of the game. Jade’s origins are a mystery to herself and players alike, and the game doesn’t reveal much. Although the conclusion did shed some light on Jade’s past, it introduced more questions than answers. The sequel could give players the option to investigate Jade’s connection to the DomZ, her arrival on Hylis, and the nature of Shauni.
BGE provides even fewer details about NPCs and Jade’s allies than it does about her. Pey’j, Jade’s adoptive uncle, is the easiest of her allies to grow attached to. However, this may be because Pey’j is the ally players learn the most about. There is also a limited amount of conversation Jade can have with each companion, and new dialogue choices are few and far between. Providing backstories and interactions to flesh out future characters would make them more interesting and relatable. Having voice-acted dialogue would also help.
Multiple, Dynamic Worlds And Their People
The story of BGE took place largely on the planet of Hylis, and Ubisoft did its best to make it feel like a sprawling, populated world. The effect was convincing when I first played the game, but now it feels a bit forced. According to various interviews, Ancel wants to include numerous planets in the sequel. These planets could be completely open to exploration, unlike Hylis in BGE, where players are limited to a sectioned-off area.
The multiple worlds Ancel envisions for the sequel would feel more vibrant if they had a dynamic, diverse populace. Compared to the busy, sometimes roaming, people of Skyrim, Hylis’ populace seems pretty staged. With the new generation of consoles, BGE’s static NPCs, drawn from a small pool of character models, will hopefully be a thing of the past. Cities should feel lived-in, with NPCs going about their lives, and perhaps even seeking you out.
Jade only had two different companions over the course of the first game, but the sequel could introduce more. We want to see Pey’j return, naturally, but BGE 2 might allow players to have more than one companion at a time, and even recruit some. Alternatively, players could also choose to venture out alone.
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Email the author Katie Seville, or follow on Game Informer.