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Beyond Good & Evil 2 trailer features a young Jade

Developers collaborating with Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s HitRecord

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

We already knew that Beyond Good & Evil 2 is a prequel to Beyond Good & Evil, but in a new cinematic trailer that Ubisoft showed during its E3 2018 press briefing today, we got a glimpse of the original game’s protagonist, Jade.

It’s certainly a surprising reveal, not least because developer Ubisoft Montpellier said when it unveiled Beyond Good & Evil 2 at E3 2017 that the game is set “before the birth of Jade.” It appears that this trailer represents a flash-forward to a point that’s still sometime before the events of the original game, since Jade looks younger than she did in Beyond Good & Evil. And it seems that Pey’j, the boarlike animal who served as Jade’s guardian in that game, is on the other side of a galactic battlefield from her in this prequel.

The trailer follows last month’s gameplay reveal, which consisted of a 45-second compilation of footage of spacecraft in flight and melee combat. Ubisoft Montpellier showed a snippet of gameplay footage, but said the full gameplay demo — which is set in the city we saw before, a futuristic metropolis with a giant statue of the Hindu god Ganesha — will be showed behind closed doors at E3.

Ubisoft Montpellier introduces some characters from Beyond Good & Evil 2.

Ubisoft Montpellier also said that Ubisoft teams in Barcelona; Bordeaux, France; and Sofia, Bulgaria, are working on Beyond Good & Evil 2. And the developer brought out actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt, whose production company, HitRecord, is partnering with the developers and the game’s fans to collaborate on creating content that will appear in the game. Ubisoft Montpellier is “inviting artists to create content for the game, such as poster designs, radio ads, and music,” Ubisoft said in a blog post.

After years of radio silence that left fans wondering if the project was in development hell, Ubisoft introduced Beyond Good & Evil 2 at E3 2017, closing its press conference with a four-minute cinematic trailer. Ubisoft Montpellier is asking fans to contribute to the game’s development in what the studio calls the Space Monkey Program. Ubisoft has yet to confirm the platforms on which it plans to release Beyond Good & Evil 2.

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