Beyond Good & Evil

10 06 2008

BG&E is a game that has been brought up from time to time during my classes. It was recently added to Steam and I decided to give it a shot. I was quickly introduced to the main character, Jade, who runs an orphanage on a small island with the help of her talking pig sidekick Pey’j. The Doms are invading her planet and it is made immediately apparent that her planet’s defense force, the Alpha section, may be in league with this hostile threat. Jade and Pey’j hop into their hovercraft and eventually join the IRIS network in hope of finding the truth.

In terms of gameplay BG&E plays out like a typical adventure game. There is somewhat of a sandbox environment or hub that leads to linear branches of the story that are blocked until your vehicle, a hovercraft, receives as certain modification. Each different style of gameplay whether it be platforming, driving, stealth, or combat isn’t particularly noteworthy. These systems have been stripped down to very simple controls with combat only being one mouse click. However, none of these systems are broken and manage to do their part. Stealth sections in particular (there are a lot) never seem impossible or cheap in being discovered. The control and in particular the camera feel like they need some reworking as this feels like a direct port from the console version.

BG&E’s strongest point is definitely in its story. Not so much in the actual writing but in how everything fits together. Everything meshes together really well to make a game that is much greater than its separate parts. Jade and Pey’j are great characters but the support cast could use some further development. BG&E also tries to pull some emotional strings that aren’t setup correctly. BG&E is an enjoyable experience over an enjoyable game. It has a lot of cool ideas and I’m looking forward to see what happens in BG&E2. Granted the stylized and almost cartoon look that works so well here looks to have been dropped in favor of realism in BG&E2 which is a dissapointment.

score: 85% | metacritic: 83

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