Forgive me as I veer off from YBS’s normal subject matter for a moment.
I’ve not really been around much in the last few days, hence the lack of posts here. I’ve been catching myself up with the last week or so’s news and my attention is drawn to this unfortunate announcement (courtesy of most excellent gaming blog Rock, Paper, Shotgun).
While the original Beyond Good and Evil had its share of frustrating moments and missed opportunities – I think that there are not many games that do not – it was still a beautifully different game. That quirky sci-fi world, the photography aspect (“shoot-em-up” as in “through a lens”), the characters. It was very simple, very easy to grasp with no complicated controls or crazy stats to manage (although the last boss fight was unreasonably difficult. It must’ve taken me a couple of dozen consecutive attempts followed by crashing during the final cutscene. Grr), but it made a far greater impression on me than a dispassionate analysis of its parts would suggest.
When it was announced leaked a trailer was released that was clearly teasing at a BG&E 2 appeared on the internet there was much cautious rejoicing. It seemed from “sources” within Ubisoft that development was going ahead, the project was all but officially announced. For Ubisoft to commission a sequel to a game that wasn’t really a commercial success was daring for a mainstream publisher, but all indications were that it’d happened. The original game has achieved quite a cult following on the interwebs, and some careful marketing could probably launch a second game into quite a respectable position.
Regrettably, Ubisoft may not concur with my analysis here. They didn’t even ask me! How inconsiderate… Regardless, there are some indications that the game has been put “on hold” indefinitely, which is often just shy of – or even a euphemism for – cancellation. The French team have said as recently as August that development continues but Colin Solal Cardo of Gamesyde claims to have confirmation of the game’s halted status.
All this for a game which so far as I am aware still is not officially confirmed. I am not terribly optimistic about ever seeing BG&E2 at this stage, sadly. It just seems too likely to me that someone high up in the publisher has squashed the project because he’s only interested in MMOs and AAA shooters.
On the bright side, at least there’s no indication that they’re converting it into an MMO (as if the market’s not saturated already)…