Headscratchers / Beyond Good & Evil

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    Pey'j's Voice 

  • Why didn't anyone from IRIS recognize Pey'j's voice? Yes, yes, I know, the plot, but given that his voice is distinctive enough to be instantly recognizable to the player when he comes in over the radio, coupled with his unique accent, one would think that someone there would notice that the short guy who just walked in with their new recruit sounded an awful lot like their boss. Also, his code name is "Wild Boar." Come on.
    • Just because he's the only pig dude we see doesn't mean he's the only pig dude period. Besides, it didn't seem like Pey'j really interacted much with IRIS members.
    • Pey'j actually never interacts with the IRIS members. He always stays in the main bar when you go into the back room.
    • And yet, in an isolated incident of creator oversight, Pey'J says exactly one line to Hahn while they were on Hahn's taxi cab. Unless Pey'J had made Hahn swear to say nothing...
    • The other IRIS Network members mention that they maintain as little personal contact with other members of the Network as possible, so that in the event that they're captured, the information that can be tortured out of them is kept to a minimum; and that they've never personally met their boss "Wild Boar", who organizes several chapters of IRIS here on Hillys; probably, Hahn realized that going to the other members and saying, "Hey guys, I totally just figured out who the boss is," would do more harm than good.
    • One line is not something you can make a firm case out of, but it is stressed by Hahn that members of the IRIS Network take precautions to make sure no one person holds all the cards. It's possible that, while he was on the Moon Base, Pey'j simply didn't have time or reason to mask his voice.

    Looters and Money 

  • How exactly do the looters make off with your money when everything is handled digitally via credit card? Do they somehow jump aboard your hovercraft, steal your card, swipe it in a pocket card reader, and then jump back into their car in time to make off? I suppose you could make the case that they're actually pocketing your crustals, but if that's the case, why doesn't Jade, Pey'j, or Double H just beat them into a bloody pulp before they make off with your money?
    • Come to think of it, why do the looters steal such tiny amounts of cash? 100 credits will buy you, what—a snack?
    • Which is why the Army, Police, nor Alpha Sections wouldn't bother investigating.
    • It'll also pay your electric bill. People who don't survive on K-bups and Starkos probably consider that fairly good money.
    • Note that they just say that her account is short by that much, not that that's her total electric bill. It's probably just that she underpaid them by 300 units, and the Alpha Section-controlled regime, being both mean and incredibly anal, wouldn't cough up the power until she paid up the rest—even if it was only about 3 bucks.
    • For what it's worth, everything being handled digitally means everything can be hacked. It's possible that they can hack Jade's account via remote connection the same way that Secundo can transfer credits to the power company on his own, or that the biologist transfers money, pearls, and film to Jade.
    • The Police — some of whom may be Looters, or may just have their cars stolen by the Looters — automatically deduct their fine from your account when you shoot civilians enough. Hackers aside, that may just be something the cars can do, which is why they're useful in either scenario.


  • What's the deal with Shauni? How exactly did Jade get to be this centuries-old entity? Since she does have power over life force, it does stand to reason that she could be immortal, but then what happened to turn her back into a baby? Does she have some kind of rebirth/regeneration cycle? (In before "Jade is a Time Lord.") Is Jade a distinctly different entity who somehow had the power transfered into her? Did she get put into "sleep mode", causing her to forget her powers? The sequels got some 'splainin' to do.
    • The game left you with questions? I believe that's what a cliffhanger ending on the first game in a series is supposed to do. That brings up what REALLY bugs me: Ubisoft is making indecent amounts of money on all sorts of things, BG&E is the best Zelda ripoff I've ever seen, Zelda is teh hueg (and another 3D Zelda title like we've seen before is NOT going to happen,) BG&E has tons of street cred, and there's NO WORD AT ALL OF THE SERIES BEING UN-CANCELLED. Please mister Ancel!
    • Well, actually...

    Suddenly a fanbase? 

  • It seems like everyone and their mom is going on about how much they love this game now, and how they can't wait for the next installment, and it's about time those Froggy Bastards decided to get off their baguette-eating asses and do something blah blah blah. My question is this: where were these bastards when the game came out?
    • They were sitting in ignorance that the game even existed. Splinter Cell and Prince of Persia: Sands of Time came out from Ubisoft at about the same time, and Ubi put all the advertising money behind those two and BG&E got shafted. People started noticing it when they saw a game the dedicated few were raving about at bargain-bin prices.
    • You know those lists of hottest video game women in the previous year? Yeah, that's how I found out about it. I'd probably heard of it, but not what it was about.
    • I wonder how many got interested via Chip Cheezum's Let's Play...

    Poorly-chosen code name 

  • When asked for a code name to obfuscate to the world who she really is, Jade gives them a name that tells the DomZ EXACTLY who she is.
    • In her defense, she didn't know the significance of the name. Although, the way she says it clearly indicates she knows it has some significance. What bugs me in particular is that half the planet seems to know she is Shauni, including the Alpha Sections, who should have been able to figure it out after seeing her sneaking around their factory as the incriminating photos start coming out.
    • They're also incredibly stupid. One does wonder, though, where exactly she got the name from when she didn't know who she was...
    • It's probably some sort of weird subconscoius thing. She doesn't know where the name "Shauni" comes from, but it seems oddly fitting to use as her identity. The only question I have is why she seemed so certain about it.
    • When that DomZ creature hypnotizes Jade at the beginning of the game, you can hear it saying, "Shauni (something) DomZ". Afterward, Secundo warns her that he thinks she got some "subconscious debris" or something to that effect.
    • A trace in her "psychokarma" was the line, if memory serves me.
    • In the end it is revealed the Domz knew who she was all along, and getting the Hillyans to fight on the moon base was exactly what they wanted. The Alpha sections have no reason to capture her.

    Stealth Vending Machines 

  • Scattered around enemy bases where stealth is (theoretically) necessary, there are vending machines. Vending machines which read your credit/debit/whatever-the-hell-it-is card. If this works anything like credit cards as we know them, wouldn't this leave some kind of record or something with the Alpha Sections? You know, a record of things like billing address and such? A name, perhaps? Am I the only one who sees a problem here?
    • It could operate on something similar to the Swiss banking system (or the pop culture variant of the Swiss banking system anyway) wherein the bank doesn't offer a name to anyone involved. It's just a number. And in a civilization where there is no option to pay with cash, perhaps it eventually became an issue that we were basically trading highly personal information at every opportunity, causing a change in laws.
    • Which would make the Alpha Sections THE most incompetent Big Brother-type regime EVER. Seriously, you install a supposedly neigh-omniscient military dictatorship, but you can't even learn people's banking info? Sheesh.
    • Might be some kind of quantum money storage unit. You know, you register money you recive in the card, wich has a quantum security making falsificating it impossible. The entire account identification might be some high-tech quantum identification, to ensure it is real money, without actually identifying the user. Like a quantum bag of holding for money.
    • Seriously thought this example was going to be about how the machines' interface is a recorded voice that bellows your every selection.
    • Was just coming along to say this. Sneaking in the Slaughterhouse, being all stealthy, ooh better get some snacks... 'ACCOUNT IDENTIFICATION OK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!'
    • If someone is sneaking around my base wreaking havoc, I'm probably not going to think of "checking the vending machines". Or maybe they did. Between the machines and the trap they nearly caught Jade in, they figure it out and shortly thereafter attack the lighthouse where she lives. Luckily, she's not there at the time. Since Mammago doesn't use money, they don't know she was ever there, or the Alphas don't have easy access to credit records outside of their bases. Or the Mammago Bros. scrub any client-identifying data from their machine before it's turned in or transmitted.
    • The explanation: it's a video game. You could just as well complain that in real life, getting hit with a gun would get you dead or seriously injured, and eating food will not heal you.
    • I point up to a previous headscratcher. "In the end it is revealed the Domz knew who she was all along, and getting the Hillyans to fight on the moon base was exactly what they wanted. The Alpha Sections have no reason to capture her." That is the point. They don't need to capture her, although they could - they're bidding their time. If they capture Jade, that's fine because the DomZ regain their power source instantly; if she manages to get all the evidence on Earth, this will lead to the Hyllians flying to the moon into the DomZ's trap, as intended. Kheck only let her get away after the roof-top chase because he knew her and Iris's next actions would play into their hands. This also explains some of the other behavior of the Alpha Sections' soldiers. They actively fight Jade whenever she gets spotted, but they stop searching for her if she hides long enough. Kheck or the DomZ Priest likely ordered the soldiers to do so, and probably also told them to ignore it if they hear the vendor machines' voices. This is actually Fridge Brilliance.
    • It is entirely possible that all the vending machines in the game have been supplied by a private company. Using any of those vending machines does indeed leave a record, but the data is sent to the company, not the Alpha Section. Since Jade always pays for the items she receives, they have no reason to suspect anything strange is going on, and as a private enterprise, they are not obliged to report to the Alpha Section unless there is a very definite reason to be suspicious.


  • "Safe and sound in its shell, the precious pearl is the slave of the currents." This is the secret password of the IRIS Network - yet the game allows you to tell it to just about everybody, and a majority of inhabitants seem to know it. The responses vary; one of the "loyal" citizens even flatly tells Jade that "it's the terrorists' password and I hope you don't have something to do with them." (No one seems to bother reporting her to the authorities, though.) And even though the password seems to be common knowledge, it's what gives you access to the IRIS headquarters.
    • How many people know where IRIS HQ is? And how many people trust the government?
    • I've heard an explanation: the sentence is more a motto than a password, and the true security is simple: it's Jade who has been invited to join the IRIS Network, and not some Joe Random, even if he happened to say it to the right person.
    • Considering that the guy she gives the password to is the very guy who scoped her out for recruitment...
    • As for who trusts the government - yes, this is what the slogan serves for in the game. Initially, most of the people have no idea what you mean (or even dismiss you as a supporter of the "terrorists"); as the IRIS reports are released, the public opinion begins to change ...

    Real name 

  • So...Shauni is Jade's actual name? Really?
    • No, it's the name of the entity that is somehow related to her. I think it boils down to in her or is her, but it's not her "actual" name, just a name.

    Hyperspace arsenal 

  • Jade's "backpack" is a little device on her hip that breaks down physical objects and "digitizes" them, then reconstitutes them...apparently deleting their data immediately afterward? This is worse than Star Trek's replicators, and more annoying as I cannot help thinking "Why don't I have infinite k-bups." "Why don't I just digitize the monster."
    • Jeez, why are you assuming the thing has infinite capacity? Also, conservation of mass is a bitch like that; it's probably easier to break them down and store them then to make them out of nothing. Also, notice how she doesn't digitize anything much larger than a k-bup? Or how the k-bup disappears when she digitizes them? Their mass probably isn't disappearing, it's just stored on her person and is now easier to carry.
    • Well, I was kidding about digitizing mons, though come to think of it that sounds like a fun side-game. I didn't think of it actually storing mass because it seems silly to me? But if it does, and it all fits inside the little device, it must be made superdense, which means for sure that not even the original molecules of the k-bup or whatever have survived. Presumably the device can synthesize a wide variety of stuff from probably basic elements. This should have an impact on how it works for you, the player — and the amount of energy needed to accomplish all this leads to the in-world economic questions raised below.
    • So it's less silly to think that the device is making the mass out of thin air when the device actually absorbs the mass of the original? You don't know how the device works: the mechanism is some unknown superscience. The only thing we do know is that the mechanism can't synthesise things out of thin air, which is good enough. There could be lots of good reasons for this (perhaps the digitization process is unique for each item, and the universe cannot produce extras while the digitized item is extant; perhaps without the original's mass the energy gradient is too high;) but we don't really need to know the Techno Babble. Also, superdense? What do you think a k-bup is made of? Neutronium?
    • Kebab.
    • Well, the thing is called a S.A.C., or Super-Atomic Compressor (if I remember correctly). I think we should apply the MS T3k Mantra, because this is just part of the Gameplay. Fewer people care about Link disappearing a fishing rod into his pocket.
    • Possibly, things it sucks up are stored as gigantic amounts of energy (no mass) in some odd way that makes it impossible to safely use the energy for any purpose other than being turned back into the same thing. As for why it's never used as a weapon? Y' got me there (Star Trek transporters also bugged me in that way.)

    Pearls in a post-scarcity economy? 

  • "Why does this economy have a medieval fixation on pearls when it should really be post-scarcity by this point."
    • Post-scarcity? An economy which still has stuff like power bills and is also at war? Also, dude, Mammago's is an illegal garage. Of course they're going to be using black-market currency like pearls and the like.
    • Should be post-scarcity; obviously the power bills are what I'm complaining about. The amount of energy freely being tossed around just to manage Jade's inventory makes it hard to buy that she has trouble keeping the lights on at home.
    • We are technically at post-scarcity right now; there's enough food being produced globally to keep everybody well-fed, for instance. Anyway, the power bills also pay for the Deflector Shields that defend them from alien invaders, they don't just keep the lights on.
    • Also, considering where the "pearls" seem to come from, it seems entirely likely that they have some kind of mystical power. The DomZ are telekinetic Life Energy-manipulating Virus-like aliens; their "bones" not only glow and float, but they're huge. Maybe they function as a power source or something similar.
    • This is a pretty good handwave even if it's nowhere in the text, which comes just short of forcing you into the conclusion that they're only valued for their rarity. Just short, though.
    • Scarcity is not a handwave.
    • The Economy? You mean Mama-go Garage? I don't remember anyone else accepting them as payment... reward, yes, but not to buy things.
    • Because they happen to be illegal to use as a currency?
    • I always figured that they were some sort of indigenous Hillyan barter-currency that the DomZ spent a lot of time phasing out. Since so many of the DomZ creatures use pearls or have pearls as a core part of their bodies, they'd have to replace the pearl system in order to stop ordinary Hillyans from needing them to keep a roof over their heads— hence the introduction of the Credit system. They're legal for people to own, buy, and sell, but not to trade, the same way that very old coins are no longer accepted as legal tender but can fetch high prices on eBay.
    • AS for the power bills, I wouldnt put it past the corrupt and DomZ-infested Hillian goverment to artificially impare the defence capabilities of the Hillians this way.
    • I always figured Hal, Babukar and Issam were just being smart, and refusing to accept a presumably fiat currency backed by a government currently embroiled in a war of uncertain outcome.

    Image editing 

  • Haven't any of the people of Hillys ever heard of Photoshop or image manipulation in general?
    • The Hyllian Word has. No one else, though, apparently.
    • That's not a given. The Word dismisses them as elaborate hoaxes, not as manipulated images, which could just as well mean that they want people to think the shots were of staged actors and designed sets. There's also the possibility that the Hillyans have technology designed to counter any tampering done onto photos. Lastly, it's part of the plot that more and more photographic evidence convinces more and more Hillyans that they're true.
    • A very in-depth review of the philosophical concepts I read in a blog also mentioned this; though I think I have the answer: Jade has a camera with super-zoom, all-round autofocus, wireless linkup that works even from the friggin' moon and a built-in computer capable of making three-dimensional maps off of two-dimensional sketches, not to mention recognizing at least 50 different species even if the photo is really, really blurry. If you photoshop a file from that system, that's probably all over the metadata. Basically, I think that sort of ubertech is too high for photoshop or related tools.
    • Metadata might serve as proof on the M-Discs, but I don't see how that'd do much good when they hijack the giant TV screens in the finale.

    Statue enemy 

  • What exactly was that statue thing that was helping the Domz High Priest? Some kind of golem?
    • O assumed it was some sort of "half-dead" being, barely alive and controlling itself. Note that when Domz High Priest is defeated the thing actualy reaches towards Jade and raises her into air, without doing anything hostile.
    • I always thought it was like an organic machine of some kind, and the actual DomZ priest stayed inside controlling it. And after it's defeated Jade somehow took control of it with her recently discovered powers.
    • I noticed that when we get the "flashes", we see the statue, as apposed to the Domz priest who was actually talking. I had assumed that that meant that jade was related to it somehow. This, combined with the fact that Jade was somehow imbued with a power that used to belong to the Dom Z, and that the statue still belonged to the Dom Z, made me think that the statue was the previous embodiment of Shauni. Which would make it a massive soulless alien, or in other words a "GIANT ALIEN ZOMBIE!", which is an awesome way to think of it.


  • Why does an electrically powered elevator have cylinders, pistons and a crankshaft to be repaired?
    • ...electric elevators have moving parts too and don't automagically move via electricity?
    • Cylinders, pistons and a crankshaft are for converting fuel via combustion (or steam/other gas directly) into reciprocating and then rotary motion. Typically this rotary motion is used directly as power, or goes to a generator which makes... yep, electrical power. If you already have sufficient power available (it is able to form sustained arcs, so one can assume it's enough power), then these particular mechanical parts serve no useful function. Other parts like gearboxes would be handy but these items? Nope.


  • In the very beginning, Jade faints and is injected with some serum that's never mentioned again. What's the deal with it?
    • I think it was the same serum they cured Double H with later. Somehow she managed to get infected during the short time she was around the monster. After the battle, Secundo mentions that "something got inside your Psycho-Karma", whatever that is.
    • It seems to be a not-uncommon affection.

    The ending 

  • I actually interpreted the ending as The Plan on the DomZ' part. All this about Jade/Shani having the power to bring people back to life is a lie: think about it, the only person who tells you about it is the freshly-resurrected Pey'J, and he has some DomZ growth on him in the ending. DomZ have exhibited some mind-control ability in the game, so it's not too far out to expect there to be some less obvious form of such an infestation. The other people you save are probably infested as well, and the whole Alpha Section plan was probably that stupid deliberately so someone could defeat them, lull Hillys into a false sense of peace and create and implant a good number of undercover DomZ agents. Is there some extra info I'm missing?
    • DomZ power is green, Shauni/Jade's power is blue. With a game this heavy on the artisticness, that's info enough imo.
    • On the other hand, the game is all about a campaign of disinformation by the DomZ. This can be another layer.

    Psycho karma 

  • A thing is exactly "Psycho karma"?, something Secoundo mentons very briefly after your first fight against the DomZ. He says "Something got inside your Psycho karma". could it have something to do with her being a DomZ queen/Goddess? or maybe that she is a martial arts master of the future? Or is it something everybody has in the future?
    • Secundo being Secundo, chance is that he is using words that he doesn't really know what they mean. What he's referring to? Perhaps that her encounter with the DomZ had a lasting psychic influence on her. (It seems to be her DomZ side trying to awaken, but Secundo can't know that at this point. We see it again halfway into the game: when Double H is infected, she hears the DomZ priest speaking to her: "Your friend in exchange for your soul.")


  • What exactly are DomZ, and how do they work? On the one hand, the sarcophagi, teratosaurus, and the reaper are treated as autonomous species when you photograph them for the science report, and the pterolimax doesn't look much like a DomZ beast at all despite being described as one. On the other hand, the lighthouse DomZ and its cousins in the Factory (one of which buds off a pearl that morphs into Metal Gear DomZ) don't have the same treatment, and seem to be puppet bodies used by the DomZ Priest. Add on to that the fact that they can infect hosts like diseases and even rebuild bodies that way, and it becomes a little harder to work out whether a DomZ is a creature with a specific and characteristic disease, a coalition of species, a superorganism controlled by the Priest, or a mixture. So again, what are they?


  • Is the DomZ Priest the Spirit Eater? At first, Peepers' reaction suggested the reaper was one, but the M Disc claims that its taming is proof of the Spirit Eater's presence. Or is Double H's torture machine a Spirit Eater, and the reaper's presence somehow proof of such a machine's existence?

    Double H loss 

  • How did Double H, a soldier with some experience and IRIS' best agent, get beaten by a reaper when a girl with no armour, no hammer, and only a few discs and a less powerful stick managed to kill it outright?
    • She's some sort of magical entity. He is not.
    • Plus, he seems to have been taken by surprise, possibly while he was recording his last message.

    Yellow Backpacks 

  • What are the Alpha Sections' yellow backpacks for? It's implied in some scenes that they use the special gas mixture to breathe, but members turn up without them, DomZ seem perfectly capable of breathing normal gas, and at least two infected soldiers move around without helmets on at all.
    • Its revealed that the Alpha Sections need the life force of the people that they capture to survive, and they need the green gas to survive. I had thought of the green stuff as a sort of orange juice concentrate, but with souls instead of oranges.

    Illegal pearls 

  • If pearls are illegal, then how come that a SCIENTIFIC INSTITUTE sends one to Jade each time she photographs a bunch of animals?
    • They're illegal because an oppressive alien government made them illegal. Most people are happy to just ignore the Alpha Sections whenever possible.


  • How does that happen that EVERYONE gets the spelling of Jade's nickname (Shauni) perfectly right after she SAYS it, and says it ONCE? For all we know, they would be perfectly justified to interpret it as "Shani".
    • IRIS spelled it Shauni in their reports and that became the official spelling everyone else used. Jade just said it on the spot and likely didn't have any preference in how it's spelled and the DomZ Priest isn't likely to even use a written language should it ever need to spell it. Really isn't any more peculiar then Pey'j's name always being spelled that way as opposed to being spelled Page.

    The invasion 
  • It seems like the DomZ are only abducting people and draining their life force because their normal source of energy, Shauni, was stolen. Does that mean Jade's parents caused the war, or were the DomZ planning to invade anyways and the loss of Shauni depleted their army and forced them to resort to raids and infiltration?