Beyond Good & Evil – 20th Anniversary Edition review

by on June 28, 2024
Release Date

June 25, 2024


Playing Beyond Good & Evil – 20th Anniversary Edition on PS5 is a very strange experience. At least, it was for me. BG&E is one of my all-time favourite games, but like many games of the era, it was very much “of its time”, especially in a mechanical sense. Even when I played the remaster in 2011, it was a game I struggled to go back to. I’ve written about it fondly before, and have always had a soft spot for it, but it was a game that never lived up to my memory of it, and so I haven’t really touched it in the last thirteen years.

So what’s different about the Anniversary Edition? Well, loads, but also not a lot. The story follows Jade, a freelance reporter who also runs an orphanage for children affect by humanity’s war with the DomZ, an evil alien race. The world of Hillys is a lot like our world, only with anthropomorphic animals and some pretty cool tech.

Beyond Good & Evil - 20th Anniversary Edition

As Jade, you spend the bulk of the 10-ish hour campaign travelling by hovercraft between a number of islands, and infiltrating bases owned by both the DomZ and Alpha Section, the supposed protectors of Hillys who are in fact complicit with the invaders. There’s an element of stealth, and you’re tasked with putting Jade’s photography skills to good us, taking incriminating photos or snapping the weird and wonderful wildlife to sell to the Science Museum, which is how you earn most of your money.

When called upon to fight, Jade does so with her Dai-Jo staff, which affords her a few combos and a charge attack. Combat isn’t particularly deep or nuanced, but it feels smooth and satisfying in Beyond Good & Evil – 20th Anniversary Edition. Later you can acquire the Gyrodisk Glove, which lets you attack enemies at range or solve some fairly simple switch puzzles.

Beyond Good & Evil - 20th Anniversary Edition

Along with her Uncle Pey’j (a talking pig mechanic) and Secundo, her virtual assistant, Jade joins up with IRIS, a resistance group opposed to Alpha Section. At times you will need to work with NPCs via contextual button prompts, The story is enjoyable enough, and Jade is a capable, likeable and sympathetic badass always willing to put herself in harm’s way.

That said, the bones of this game are 20 years old even if it does look gorgeous now: there are some clunky animations, a few too many instakill stealth sections, and a generous helping of early-noughties sass in the dialogue. But it’s still so good, with tighter, more responsive controls, a reworked soundtrack (although I’ll be honest, I wouldn’t have known if the marketing hadn’t told me), and a few extras thrown in.

I say “thrown in” but that’s a little unfair. The detailed museum mode is fantastic, offering an almost unprecedented level of information on the history of the game and Ubisoft itself over the last two decades. In these days of Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry it might be difficult to believe that this is a Ubisoft game at all, but it’s all right there in the superb gallery.

In addition to this, Ubisoft has a put a few modern extras in there, such as cosmetic outfits for Jade – something rarely seen in back in 2003 – and even a whole new ending that leads into Beyond Good & Evil 2. Yeah, you read that right: BG&E2 is not only still in development somewhere, but it’s also real enough to warrant a whole new ending for the first game.

Whether you played the original or its remaster, or this is your first time experiencing Jade’s adventure, Beyond Good & Evil – 20th Anniversary Edition is a great version of a genuinely wonderful game that truly does the original release justice and even adds to it. Either way, it’s a stone-cold classic and well worth your time.


Feels great to play
Museum gallery is wonderful
New ending and features


Insta-death stealth sections
Some clunky animations

Editor Rating
Our Score


In Short

Beyond Good & Evil - 20th Anniversary Edition is a great version of a genuinely wonderful game that truly does the original release justice.