Michel Ancel’s science fiction fantasia Beyond Good & Evil turns ten this year. A lot’s changed since then. Ancel himself went Hollywood, working on an adaptation of Peter Jackson’s King Kong in 2005 before returning to the Rayman series that made him famous for Rayman Raving Rabbids and Rayman Origins. Meanwhile sprawling adventures like Beyond Good & Evil have become even more common, while its unusual themes of political dissidence and photojournalism have remained relatively unique. Another strange truth: It’s now been five years since Beyond Good & Evil 2 was announced, with no official imagery of the game shown since that brief 2008 trailer. As its done annually since, Ubisoft swore this week that the game is still in the works. New job listings uncovered at LinkedIn, though, suggest that it may well be coming soon.
First, Twitter user DeSero (via GoNintendo) noted on Monday that Ubisoft designer Mathieu Audrain’s resume now includes an entry for Level Design on two projects. The first is Killer Freaks, a Wii U exclusive announced at E3 2011 that later turned into ZombiU. The second is none other than Beyond Good & Evil 2, which he worked on through 2011. The game is listed as a multiplatform title for Wii U, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3.
This is surprising as Ancel has said for some time now that Beyond Good & Evil 2 was delayed after its 2008 announcement since it would require next-generation console technology. “I can say that it’s a very ambitious game and we need some tech to achieve that ambition,” said Ancel in 2012, “We focus on the game. We create it first, then we’ll see what can run it.”
At the time, Ancel said that the team would only discuss the game when it’s ready. “We won’t make promises that we can’t keep. We are in an active creation stage and at the moment we are only focusing on the game and making it the best that we can.”
Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said much the same thing to Kotaku at last week’s PlayStation 4 announcement, which Ubisoft was a significant presence at thanks to Watch Dogs. “It’s coming,” said Guillemot, “I don’t give any more comments on Beyond Good & Evil 2 because I think the next time we communicate we have to have something new.”
Ubisoft’s 2013 line up is shaping up to be a cross-generational investment, with games like Watch Dogs coming to both current consoles as well as PlayStation 4 and the next Xbox. Beyond Good & Evil 2 may end up as one of those titles.