GSY REVIEW | X360, PS3 Wednesday, March 2, 2011 | 5:30 PM

GSY Review: Beyond Good & Evil HD

GSY Review: Beyond Good & Evil HD

It's been more than seven years that Jade and Pey'j invaded the Playstation 2 and a bit later the first Xbox and Nintendo's Gamecube. A great game that has left so many fond memories to some of the very few that bought it then. Unfortunately, it did not sell so well at the time and since then, we have been longing for a worthy sequel that hasn't come yet to this day. Thankfully, Ubisoft decided to give Michel Ancel's game a second youth with Beyond Good & Evil HD. Here is a very special review for a game that is just as special.





First and foremost, it seems to me that we need to go back in time a little, back to an ancient era when BlimBlim would give his personal opinion on games very rarely. The reason is twofold: first, I think it's interesting to compare what was said about the game then to what can be said now. Secondly, it will be a great moment of nostalgia for the oldest amongst you guys, back in the days when Gamersyde was still Xboxyde.

Xboxyde, February 29 2004, BlimBlim

BG&E is not your typical game. Graphically especially, it's very original. Some have said it's the "French Touch" ambassador, perhaps they are right.

Graphically even if it does not use any of the Xbox advanced capabilities, the game is really beautiful and different. The pastel colors and the really original character design help set a very nice atmosphere. The level design is also very good.

The sound is also praiseworthy with great music and excellent dubs (French or English). The sound effects are good but they do not stand out in comparison.



The gameplay itself has been designed to be easy to master. The fights are rather simple, as are the puzzles. You almost never feel lost or blocked. There are a lot of different gameplay types, fights, hovercraft sequences, platform and adventure, and they all blend perfectly.

The only downside of the game is that it's only 10 hours or so long. It's not much for such a game, but considering it's very cheap now it's not a problem anymore.

In conclusion: Go buy it! It's an excellent and beautiful game, with nice characters and gameplay. And it's cheap!



Gamersyde, March 2 2011, Driftwood

It is rather amusing to read BlimBlim's words seven years later. Funny to see how back then a 10 hour long game would be a bit of a disappointment when today, very few single player titles can brag of giving much more. It is also impossible not to react to what BlimBlim said in the end since most people obviously did not follow his advice to buy BG&E. Maybe one of the reasons why Michel Ancel hasn't been able to deliver a sequel yet.

But what is left of BG&E after all these years? Is it still as good as BlimBlim used to say? A lot of things have changed since 2003 in terms of game design, but hey, what do you know? Very little has changed when it comes to BG&E actually. With 1080p support and running at a steady 60 frames per second framerate, BG&E still is as charming as ever, with a very good artistic direction and design. True, character models could use more polygons these days, and so could the more open environments, but honestly, it is just impossible not to feel enraptured by the game's world.



The soundtrack in BG&E is just great, with fantastic music and good voice acting. Some sound effects show their age a bit, like the footsteps for example, but overall it is still very solid and really helps immerse the player in the story.

It is a shame though, that the many loading times have not been eliminated, and though they may not be very long to begin with, they could have at least been made shorter. They also happen quite often, every time you leave an area, each of them being sometimes quite small. It is clearly something we are not used to anymore with all the great open world games out there but it is still manageable.

Another old habit you are going to have to find is the manual saving system. It may seem odd to mention it but at a time when games auto-save every five seconds, you don't want to forget to use one of the computers that can be found in the different locations of the game's world.

A few minor flaws are also back with this 2011 edition, like the camera that sometimes gets in the way, especially in more narrow environments and during fights. That being said, there is not much to complain about and it'd be a shame to stop at such small details.



Verdict


With varied gameplay, a great story and appealing characters, the only thing missing from Beyond Good & Evil is a true sequel. Indeed, when you reach the game's surprise ending, all you want is to find out what happens next. Now, a bit like BlimBlim in 2004, I want to say that the release of a sequel is up to you. Show that you care and do what you have to do if you know what I mean...


Let's finish this article with one last video showing a bit more gameplay from the first real mission of the game :

The First 10 Minutes 2004 (FR)
Download: WMV | MP4 | AVI
The First 10 Minutes 2011
Gameplay 2011
Launch trailer

All comments

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Commented on 2011-03-02 17:43:57
If the game was in 3D, I would have bought it, but the graphics are too out-dated to sit through this (I'm a graphics whore). Further more, I think it's bad PR to declare there won't be a sequel if it doesn't sell well. Ubisoft bad, bad, bad.
Commented on 2011-03-02 17:48:45 In reply to droezelke
Posted by droezelke
I think it's bad PR to declare there won't be a sequel if it doesn't sell well. Ubisoft bad, bad, bad.
PR version of blackmail.
Commented on 2011-03-02 17:49:35
I don't believe they've ever said that officially.

Forum member version of paranoia? ^^

Now a good number of sales could clearly help the sequel. And, I beg to differ, the game looks great, especially considering it was made back in 2003.
Commented on 2011-03-02 17:51:53
This is worth it on the basis of having a true 16:9 version of the game alone. The letterbox/4:3 PC/console versions no longer do the opening justice.
Commented on 2011-03-02 17:53:46 In reply to droezelke
Posted by droezelke
If the game was in 3D, I would have bought it, but the graphics are too out-dated to sit through this (I'm a graphics whore). Further more, I think it's bad PR to declare there won't be a sequel if it doesn't sell well. Ubisoft bad, bad, bad.
Bad droezelke for not buying this because the graphics aren't good enough. Droezelke bad, bad, bad. :)
Commented on 2011-03-02 18:06:36
it was always hard to get too excited about this when a far superior zelda game was asking for attention beside it.

Its now one of those games with a strange cult status...everybody loves it, nobody played it. I personally found it boring the first attempt at a run through. I've not looked at it in years though..so i'll check the free trial on xbla, and if i discover i am actually missing something thats more than gamers carried away nostalgia, i'll stick on my gamecube original thats been collecting dust over the years

Oh and if that doesnt get them making a sequal then they should of made a more tempting game the first time round..and done a better job at marketing it.
Commented on 2011-03-02 18:08:43
it's strange seeing the custcenes speeded up at 60 fps, but the gameplay is so much smoother. Is it me or the Jade VA is new? oO
Commented on 2011-03-02 18:14:53 In reply to bleachedsmiles
Posted by bleachedsmiles
they should of made a more tempting game the first time round..and done a better job at marketing it.
Well they learned fast and got it right with Warrior Within.
Commented on 2011-03-02 18:18:25
is this a pc port?
Commented on 2011-03-02 19:36:59
They said that? If BG&E HD doesn't sell well...there won't be a BG&E 2? So i guess that one trailer/teaser was just bullshit then? Sigh....i bought it and i'm liking it alot, but sadly i see it happening that alotta people still will pass.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:09:59 In reply to Moonwalker
Posted by Moonwalker
So i guess that one trailer/teaser was just bullshit then? Sigh....i bought it and i'm liking it alot, but sadly i see it happening that alotta people still will pass.
of course that was bullshit, i still can't believe people think target concepts are the real deal. Even the early 8 days footage was so obviously Cg and bots still keep going on about that one to this day.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:15:33
He did say it in this interview

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-02-24-keep-...

"When asked whether the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network re-release was being used as a test balloon to gauge consumer interest in the franchise, Xu was similarly coy.

"Yes it is true; please buy Beyond Good & Evil HD if you want more BG&E games :)" he wrote, before adding, "For real... I don't know."

I think it was intended as a joke, it just wasn't a very good one...

Will pass on this and save the money, already have it on Steam.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:34:52 In reply to Moonwalker
Posted by Moonwalker
They said that? If BG&E HD doesn't sell well...there won't be a BG&E 2? So i guess that one trailer/teaser was just bullshit then? Sigh....i bought it and i'm liking it alot, but sadly i see it happening that alotta people still will pass.
they're already halving their chances by releasing it only on the 360 (currently). if you want to guage a games popularity, at least release it on all consoles.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:42:32
It's part of MS something-or-other promotion though, which means MS sorta foot the bill for marketing and that's a huge boon for third parties. That's why some opt into the Summer of Arcade thing, too.

Being part of promotions like that secures a 3 month or something exclusivity window in exchange for that freebie marketing push.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:51:04 In reply to SimonM7
Posted by SimonM7
It's part of MS something-or-other promotion though, which means MS sorta foot the bill for marketing and that's a huge boon for third parties. That's why some opt into the Summer of Arcade thing, too.

Being part of promotions like that secures a 3 month or something exclusivity window in exchange for that freebie marketing push.
which is all well and good, but if a sequel litterally hangs in the balance based on a HD ramakes success, leaving a platform out for 3+ months doesnt seem like a great idea. will people care enough to pick it up on PS3 by that time? i personally doubt it.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:53:45
It's not hanging in the balance though, I can just about promise you that. They're not sitting at their desks now waiting to see the numbers to begin work on a thing. If it's actually coming its already well into development and shown interest now only spurs on their confidence in the title and meanwhile creates awareness in the marketplace.

For all intents and purposes, big sales is a boon for a sequel, but these wheels are man sized and are already turning if they're going to.
Commented on 2011-03-02 21:57:24 In reply to SimonM7
Posted by SimonM7
It's not hanging in the balance though, I can just about promise you that. They're not sitting at their desks now waiting to see the numbers to begin work on a thing. If it's actually coming its already well into development and shown interest now only spurs on their confidence in the title and meanwhile creates awareness in the marketplace.

For all intents and purposes, big sales is a boon for a sequel, but these wheels are man sized and are already turning if they're going to.
but from what i've heard, the wheels ARNT turning. since that teaser all i've heard is that the project hasnt moved anywhere. i wouldnt be surprised if this really was a guage on whether to actually work on a sequel or not. i mean if this completely flops, why would you even bother starting it?
Commented on 2011-03-02 22:02:02
didnt some gameplay footage also get leaked?

Odds are the games in developement and they're pushing the HD version of the first out this year to get the name back out there. If thats the case then they'll probably be something official shown at E3.
Commented on 2011-03-02 22:09:01 In reply to bleachedsmiles
Posted by bleachedsmiles
didnt some gameplay footage also get leaked?

Odds are the games in developement and they're pushing the HD version of the first out this year to get the name back out there. If thats the case then they'll probably be something official shown at E3.
that "gameplay footage" was CGi.
Commented on 2011-03-02 22:09:44
Well the rumours are that Michel Ancel with a tiny team has been tinkering away with BG&E2 for absolute yonks (ie, hasn't just been twiddling thumbs and making middleware for 2D rayman.. and twiddling thumbs). My guess is that this XBLA release is first and foremost a way to raise awareness among people who missed it the first time around and perhaps strengthen Ubi's belief in the IP and subsequent marketing prowess (aswell as sell a bucketload since everyone agreed that it's a cult classic, Rez style) and then follow this up with an announcement later this year.

I mean if they were to actually begin work on BG&E2 now it'd be approx two years until anything comes out of it, and it seems pretty unlikely that it'd be a 2014 release on current formats. In fact, that'd possibly put it in a just as awkward position as its predecessor.
Commented on 2011-03-02 22:33:23
So is this pretty much the PC version running at 720p? Or did they go back and enhance textures, geometry, and character models?
Commented on 2011-03-02 22:36:29 In reply to jackdoe
Posted by jackdoe
So is this pretty much the PC version running at 720p? Or did they go back and enhance textures, geometry, and character models?
from what i understand they've done all of those things. just not to the level of the upcoming strangers wrath port.
Commented on 2011-03-02 23:18:44 In reply to KORNdog
Posted by KORNdog
that "gameplay footage" was CGi.
hehe yeah. I hadn't seen it in so long..just remembered it looked like they were pushing for something more Uncharted than zelda this time.

Found this piss take of it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31QEERV4Rdc
Commented on 2011-03-02 23:23:27
I think they just can't expect to valuate to release a sequel just basing on how this Remake will sell on the Live..

I mean, cmon jesus, this game ain't MGS or RE or jeez, i dunno, any GOW.. this game didn't collect much sales when it first came out, even if it still was a good game, so why do they expect that it'll have now?

This is just ridiculous IMHO... if they wanna make a real sequel, then just make it and make it as beautiful as the first was, or even more.. Then u'll see the real EARNINGS, and not now with a damn remake with that g@ddamn "HD" label, that nowadays just remakrs SOMETHIN OLD, but somethin that some1 still wants to squeeze for making money on it..

Sorry about this endless opinion, hope u got the point.

Spaghetti. From Italy, with pomodoro.
Commented on 2011-03-03 07:00:41 In reply to KORNdog
Posted by droezelke
If the game was in 3D, I would have bought it, but the graphics are too out-dated to sit through this (I'm a graphics whore). Further more, I think it's bad PR to declare there won't be a sequel if it doesn't sell well. Ubisoft bad, bad, bad.
Huh, never heard someone say that 3D would have convinced them to buy it.
The game looks pretty good, and the style is really nice. The only lacking part is the polygons really. The lighthing, textures, etc all look great. Plus, lots of Anti-aliasing and super smooth frame rate.
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