The long-awaited Beyond Good and Evil 2 was re-revealed with a cinematic trailer during Ubisoft’s E3 press conference, and more details about the incredibly ambitious game have emerged in the days since.
Foremost among the tantalising new details of the game is the unprecedented scale and scope of the adventure. Unlike 2003’s original, which was a semi-linear open-world adventure, Beyond Good and Evil 2 will offer a much larger play space, with the team at Ubisoft Montpellier crafting a fully-simulated star system with several planets and numerous cities that can be fully explored. While the likes of No Man’s Sky and Elite: Dangerous have offered larger scale, Beyond Good and Evil 2 will go further than either of those games through the inclusion of a physically-correct play space, with an authentic replication of planetary rotation giving rise to dynamic sunrises and sunsets.
In order to ensure the accuracy of the simulation, the team at Ubisoft Montpellier have spent three years crafting a new game engine capable of achieving the developer’s vision. This new engine also allows the game to include both the immense scale outlined above, as well as the fine details shown in the game’s debut trailer embedded below.
In addition, players will be able to create a character, whether a human or one of the Hybrids featured in the trailer, and work their way up through the story. At the present time, story details are light, but the game will take place in the 24th Century, long after China and India have risen to become global superpowers and have led the charge to create the Moreau-esque human/animal hybrids as a slave labour workforce. Early details indicate that Beyond Good and Evil 2 will offer a rags-to-riches story, with the player character rising from a nobody to a space pirate, while also exploring themes of slavery and freedom, as the game’s prequel status suggests that it will lead into the original game, which had the hybrid characters as free citizens.
The journey will be different for each player, however. Although certain characters will appear in every story, the game’s director, Michel Ancel, told IGN that many of the characters the player meets will be determined by a mechanic similar to Middle-Earth: Shadow of War’s Nemesis System, giving them unique personality traits, abilities, and character arcs.
The game’s engine is reportedly fully functional, though the team expects to take another year before being able to offer a playable build of the game, meaning that Beyond Good and Evil 2 could still be a long way off. Reports of the game’s target platforms vary, though PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One are widely expected, while a Switch version is also possible.