Beyond Good and Evil is an HD remake of an Action-Adventure game from the last generation. It was a cult classic and was admired by those who played it. With strange and lovable characters and an interesting plot, I immediately saw why. But the splendor of this game is not without a few faults.
You play as a young girl named Jade. Her name fits her well considering she wears nearly all green and even her eyes are green. She runs an orphanage and is a photo-journalist. Her main weapon is a pole that she swings at her foes in a way that resembles Kung-Fu.
The controls were fairly good other than the odd "X button to confirm." The only other control issues I had were with the vehicles. They seemed too
loose. The slightest movement for a turn could be more drastic than you anticipated it would be until you get used to the steering. The aircraft controls are, strangely, not inverted for the controls like most games; In Beyond Good and Evil when you move the stick upward, you go upward, and vice versa.
There are two forms of currency in this game, Dinero (normal money) and Pearls. The latter used to buy vehicle parts off of a "Black Market." Money is earned very easily throughout the game and is never really a problem to obtain. Pearls, though, are slightly harder. These are earned by chasing down looters, killing somewhat tougher enemies, sneaking through warehouses full of enemies, winning some of the fun hovercraft races, finding them around town (harder than it sounds), winning them by gambling in the bar and are rewards for completing rolls of film - which brings me to my next topic.
The in-game camera was very neat in my opinion. Not only was it used to take pictures of creatures to earn money but it had many other uses. It could be used to take a picture of a map on the wall to give you a full map of the area in your menu. It would also tell you information about enemies and let you know their weak spot if you focus on them.
The "camera-view" also comes with an FPS style of aiming a, for lack of a better description, frisbee launcher. While the discs do not damage enemies strongly by any means, they can distract guards, hit switches, and weaken certain enemies so that your normal attack will kill them.
The combat system is very simplistic but it is perfect for the game. When you are attempting photgraph enemies while also fighting them a more complex battle system would be a nuisance. The battles are generally with mobs of foes but they are normally done away with fairly easily. The only difficult fights are boss fights, but only until you realize how to beat them which doesnt take long.
The puzzles in this game were quite fun. They ranged from just finding your way through a cave to having to stealthily sneak past guards. They were not too challenging but took a little thought. If I didn't analyze the situation enough it generally took me two or three times to complete each one.
The camera-angles were probably the most annoying part of the game to me. Most of the time they were pretty good but some points of the game had me looking at walls when I tried to move the camera for a better view instead of showing me what I wanted to see. This isn't a huge problem except when the view is blocked while trying to get past guards. In those cases, you have to nearly come out of hiding to see where the guards are. Heads up though, rushing in and hoping the guards don't see you doesn't work that often....I tried and failed.
This game makes you not only watch your character's health, but your companions' health. If you accidentally strike your ally/allies too many times, or do not keep your eye on them during fights, it could be a fast and unexpected Game Over. Luckily, you have the ability to give the others items, before and after battle. If you give them something while they are injured, they immediately use it. But on the other hand, if you give them items while they have full health, they hold on to them and use only when necessary.
Regarding AI partners, they are not too bad but do not always help as well as you would want. The biggest help they give is launching enemies into the air so you can baseball bat them at certain targets. Other than that, they do not provide too much support in battle, or at least that was the case when I played it.
This game gave me a good 10 hours of gameplay and I still didn't obtain all of the pictures. I will definitely go back and play it again in the future. This game is a gem from the previous generation that was over-looked by many gamers and knowing there is a sequel in the works gives me much joy. With the $10 (800 Microsoft Points) price tag, the interesting, although somewhat cliché, story and fun gameplay (not to mention an easy 200 for the achievements hunters) this game is a MUST HAVE for the XBLA, especially if you are a fan of action-adventure style games.