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Gamer Savings Time: Beyond Good and Evil - The Ballad of an Un-Deadpan Yankee
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." Dr. Hunter S. Thompson
drewness
drewness
Gamer Savings Time: Beyond Good and Evil
Ok, here we go with installment #2 of Gamer Savings Time. Today, I'll be talking a bit about an excellent game that you might have missed. If you have played this well, then you don't need to read this entry and my safely skim on to the next post on your auspicious F-list and we'll speak no more about it, shall we my son?

For those that are still with me, hi there! So, today's entry into Gamer Savings Time is a game from Ubisoft called Beyond Good and Evil. BGE is a fantasy sci/fi adventure game at its core. The story takes place on the world of Hillys, a planet that is under attack by the mysterious alien race called the Domz. A division of the military called the Alpha Section is meant to be protecting the citizens(a mix of humans and various forms of animal people) from the Domz, but it's becoming unclear as to how well they're actually doing their jobs. Enter two of the most important characters in the game, Jade and her pig-man friend, Uncle Pey'j. Jade and Pey'j run a lighthouse that doubles as a shelter for some of the children that have been orphaned by the war with the Domz, Jade also earns extra credits as a freelance photographer. Over the course of the game, Jade, Pey'j, Jade's AI buddy Segundo and others that they will meet along the way become more and more involved in a conflict between the suspect Alpha Sections, the Domz, and the rebel underground news organization, the IRIS Network.

One thing I like about BGE is that it starts you into the action right from the get go. While this is an adventure game, complete with a lot of sneaking around and puzzle solving, there are several times throughout the course of the story that Jade is going to have to, quite literally, get out her ass-kickin' stick and do some damage. The game throws you right into your first combat less than 2 minutes into the game, and it serves as a great way to kick off the game's excellent story. The story and voice acting in the game are top-notch. I was interested all the way through, and there weren't any moments where the game suffered from "Developers Doing the Voices Disease". The sounds and music are also great. I mean, the soundtrack doesn't really stand out most of the time, and can be a bit generic sci-fi, it works here. It doesn't distract from the game, and it's handled quite well.

The game also looks great. In many places it looks like an animated movie, and it's a lot of fun just cruising around, which you do have reason to do since in addition to completing the regular mission goals to advance the story, you can use your camera to take pictures of the wildlife on Hillys for a woman at the Science Institute to earn extra credits, and to earn more pearls. You will need several pearls in the course of the game, since while credits are useful to buy health packs, healthbar upgrades, vehicle repairs, and a few minor upgrades for your vehicle, the most important upgrades can only be purchased with pearls(large, sparkling spheres that are somewhat reminiscent of crystal balls, yes the double entendres could be FLYING here. hehe), from the Mamago Garage, run by a group of friendly Jamaican Rhino-men. Yes, that's right, Jamaican Rhino men. Look, if you're going to accept without question the scantily-clad rabbit-eared woman in Final Fantasy 12, you've got no right to raise a quizzical eyebrow at a group of Rasta Rhinos. Where was I? Ah yes.

This game is a heck of a value these days. It looks, sounds and plays great, has an interesting story, and is just an all around great gaming experience. It never sold that well, something I just can't quite figure out, but I think it had the misfortune to be released against a few other really big titles and probably got lost in the shuffle. Can't quite remember. Anyway, you can find the game now for 10 bucks or less, and for the quality of the game experience, that's a steal. It's available for the OGXBox, the PS2, and the Gamecube. I recomment the XBox version of you can. From what I hear the PS2 version has some issues, although the the Gamecube version should probably be fine. Probably just a little less pretty-looking.

So there you have it. A great game for stupid cheap. You can't beat that. If you're a fan of adventure games, head out and pick it up. Hopefully, it might encourage UbiSoft to do a sequel. Doubtful, but you never know. OK, probably not. Still, fans of the game can hope. Anyway, off you go. Take some pictures, kick some butt, save Hillys. GO NOW!! heh.

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