Beyond Good & Evil HD
Posted 2 years ago By - Jay Acevedo
With games like True Crime: Streets of L.A, SOCOM II, Need For Speed Underground, Mario Kart Double Dash, and Final Fantasy X-2 releasing in the same month back in 2003, Ubisoft went in and released two of their own games as well: Prince of Persia: Sands of Time and Beyond Good & Evil. If you were following the industry at that point, you may recall seeing the French developer putting a lot of emphasis on the Prince’s return rather than pushing Jade’s action/adventure/platforming story.
Of course, Prince of Persia went on to sell millions of copies and spawned several sequels - and even a reboot - since then, leaving Michel Ancel’s amazing work at the back of the room with no commercial attention whatsoever joining the likes of Psychonauts, Red Dead Revolver and Chronicles of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay as the most underrated games of the last console generation. Those who actually gave it shot discovered a very interesting, clever and charming adventure title. Fast forwarding to 2011, Ubisoft felt like it was time to give Jade’s forgotten quest for truth a second chance, only this time as a downloadable game on Xbox Live Arcade.
For those who haven’t heard a thing about Beyond Good & Evil, it tells the tale of a young photojournalist named Jade hired by the IRIS Network to investigate suspect disappearances on the planet Hillys, who happens to be in the middle of a war against an alien force known as DomZ. With Hillys being under the protection of the Alpha Sections, the IRIS suspects them to be playing double sides and helping the alien invaders. Alongside her guardian boar Pey’J and their robot buddy Double H, Jade embarks on an adventure that will lead her to explore the planet and learn the truth.
I think it’s fair to mention that Beyond Good & Evil HD is a direct high-definition port of the Xbox/PC/PS2/Gamecube game from back in the day and that aside from the obvious graphic revamp, leaderboard support, and the achievements, there’s nothing else new to expect. The simplistic controls and gameplay, amazing audio work (both soundtrack and voice acting), gorgeous level rendering...everything is there. The least successful points of the game are also back. The wonky camera, the not-so-cool hovercraft sections as well as the uninspired character models and animations.
Also, I need to point out the fact that Beyond Good & Evil isn’t the hardest game someone will get to play. Completing the whole adventure can be done in less than twelve hours, based on the person’s skill, which fits the XBLA format rather well. Don’t worry, Ubisoft plans to release the game on Playstation Network for you Sony fans sometime this year.
To me, Beyond Good & Evil circa 2003 wasn’t a perfect title and it’s far from being one eight years later. However, many imperfect games ended up being very interesting to play and this one, among those I’ve quickly listed earlier in my review, deserved the gamer’s attention.
Some might see it as a way to get people’s attention for the much-talked sequel. Others as a way to correct a marketing mistake. Personally I see both affirmations as correct. Still, this HD return is now available for 800 Microsoft Points (~ $10) on Xbox Live Arcade and it’s certainly worth checking out.
+ Great visuals, audio work
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Release Date : 2011/03/02
System : Xbox 360
Publisher : Ubisoft
Developer : Ubisoft Shanghai
Category : Adventure
ESRB : T
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