Ubisoft to Begin External Playtesting for Beyond Good and Evil 2

A few years ago at E3 2017, Ubisoft took the stage to announce Beyond Good and Evil 2. The reveal came as a shocker to many because the game had been originally teased all the way back in 2008. After nearly a decade of silence and conflicting reports, the company made the game official and described it as wildly ambitious

People jumped aboard the hype train and there was genuine excitement around the world Michael Ancel—creator of Beyond Good and Evil—was trying to bring to life. It was clear that the release was not near due to his comments on how development is still at ‘day 0‘ despite being properly announced in front of millions.

Since its announcement, there hasn’t been a single official update on Beyond Good and Evil’s release. Everyone thought that Ubisoft had kind of just abandoned the project, akin to Skull & Bones, especially because it took 9 years to even get a trailer. Behind the scenes, however, the game was simply too expensive to leave behind.

The company had spent a ton of resources trying to uphold development and not let the title die. Ubisoft poured in so much cash that, at this point, canceling the game would cost more than just continuing development in hopes of producing a final, presentable product.

Again, this is a similar predicament to what Skull & Bones was in up until yesterday when the game was officially ‘re-revealed‘ after being dormant for nearly 6 years. Recent reports suggest a similar fate for Beyond Good and Evil 2 with Kotaku reporting earlier this year that the project is still in active development.

Beyond Good and Evil 2 is still alive

Now, Tom Henderson, an acclaimed leaker with a credible track record, is bringing new information forward which points towards bright signs for Beyond Good and Evil. According to Tom, Ubisoft recently held an investor Q&A session in which, after being asked what the company had in the pipeline for the future, this is how they replied:

This information is confidential until the games are officially announced to the gaming community. The games already known include Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora™, Skull & Bones®, Mario + Rabbids®: Sparks of Hope, Roller Champions™, Star Wars, Beyond Good and Evil™ 2, the remakes of Prince of Persia®: The Sands of Time and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell®.

There are also future projects for our brands, with among others Assassin’s Creed®, Far Cry®, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon®, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six®, Tom Clancy’s The Division® and our investments in F2P, including XDefiant, Rainbow Six Mobile, The Division Mobile, The Division Heartland and Ghost Recon Frontline. As previously stated, Ubisoft boasts the richest game pipeline in its history for years to come.

As you can tell, the French game developer is quite happy about its current slate of planned games. There are enough titles here to keep the audience satiated for potentially the next 5 years or so. But the main takeaway from that quote is that Beyond Good and Evil 2 is still in the works, and likely in a good state given how Ubisoft is willingly including it in the list. 

The leaker goes on to mention that external playtesting for the game will begin this month. More and more sources close to Tom have confirmed that the game is indeed still in development following the aforementioned quote. Not only that, but Ubisoft would be conducting more extensive playtests for Beyond Good and Evil 2 than they usually do for their games.

The company often follows a one-session-per-week model, but for this game, things are being taken a bit more seriously. That being said, don’t expect the game to now release in the near future. Playtesting isn’t a dead giveaway that the game is almost done, it’s more so indicative of the studio’s confidence in the project. 

Source: Ubisoft

Beyond Good and Evil 2 doesn’t technically even have a game director, or at least one that we know about. That’s because Michel Ancel, who was with the series from the start, left the video-game industry in 2020 and was then hit with toxic leadership allegations. As you could guess, this only served as another setback in the long list of development issues for the game. 

Moreover, Henderson closes off the article with pointing out that the Beyond Good and Evil 2 has been a victim of nightmarish development for 7 years now. Considering how the game was originally conceptualized years before its E3 2017 reveal means that it has been in active development for almost 9 years at this point. No wonder why Ubisoft didn’t want to give up on it.

There is a chance we might see Beyond Good and Evil 2 make an appearance at the Ubisoft Multi-Game Showcase at this year’s Gamescom. That would be one hopeful guess, but not a foolish one. So far, we haven’t heard anything about a planned re-announcement for the game, so keep your expectations in check.  

Huzaifa Haroon
Born and raised around computers, Huzaifa is an avid gamer and a Windows enthusiast. When he's not solving the mysteries of technology, you can find him writing about operating systems, striving to inform the curious.