The game was initially teased in May 2008, with Jade and Pey'j appearing in a short trailer showcasing a new graphics engine. Michel Ancel would later state that the game was only in pre-production and had not yet been greenlit, though a gameplay trailer would be leaked the following year.
BGE2 would undergo radio silence after this, with there being endless rumors of the title supposedly being cancelled as Ancel and Ubisoft Montpellier would continue to put the bulk of their focus on various different projects over the following decade, including Rayman Origins and Rayman Legends. The game wouldn't be mentioned again until October 2016, when after a string of concept art posts from Ancel on Instagram, Ubisoft would officially announce that the game was in production via a post on the game's Facebook page.
At E3 2017, the game was given a new trailer that revealed the game would now be a prequel, with prior work on a direct sequel having been scrapped in the intervening years. The new narrative would instead focus on two new heroes who are part of a group of space pirates in pursuit of "true freedom". As of July 2021, Ubisoft has continued to ensure fans that development is "progressing well".
Has the following tropes:
2009 Ubidays trailer
- Call-Back: Pey'j still has the bandage on his hand from where a DomZ creature emerged from it in The Stinger of the first game...
- Cool Car: The car Jade and Pey'j manage to crash into a tree in the desert. It makes it here only because it's a hovering car.
- Crossing the Desert: Jade and Pey'j are shown in the middle of a desert traversing trip...with their car broken down.
- Messy Pig: Pey'j does it better than ever. Poor fly...
2009 leaked gameplay trailer
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The city which Jade is being chased through has a mix of Indian and Middle Eastern culture.
- Jitter Cam: Used liberally during the trailer
- Le Parkour: The trailer features Jade going parkour-tastic in an urban India-esque city, leaping off roofs, the heads of policemen, and some poor guy stuck in a bathroom.
- Nobody Poops: Amusingly averted, Jade escapes through a family's house, exiting through the bathroom while someone is still on the toilet.
- She-Fu: Jade appears to have gotten better at it in the combat shown in the leaked trailer.
- Ambiguously Brown: Shani averts this, she's confirmed on the game's website as Somalian. The various human cultures in System 3 are ex-pat communities formed from various cultures from Old Earth, meaning that the diversity will be less ambiguous this time around compared to the original game.
- Bermuda Triangle: Moksha's Gate is a kind of legendary space anomaly with different theories floating around about what it is. The Space Pirate protagonists believe "true freedom lies within," but it's highly dangerous, and a graveyard of spaceships surround it.
- Big "WHAT?!": Zhou Yuzhu yells this when he finds out the Pey'j idol is nothing more than chocolate painted to look like gold.
- Bilingual Bonus: The neon halos around the giant Ganesha statue state in Hindi Devnagiri script: Swagat! (Welcome!).
- Character Customization: According to the developers, instead of a pre-established character like Jade, players will create their own customizable Player Character that will start with nothing but move up the ranks to amass their own ship and pirate crew.
- Chef of Iron: Pey'j is the Chief Cook of the Gada and is just as certified an ass-kicker as always.
- Cluster F-Bomb: A lot of f-bombs are dropped in the trailer.
- Darker and Edgier: Not a whole lot, but the overall style from the gives this impression. The cartoonish style from the original game has given way to a more realistic look, which is carried on from the footage shown in the pre-2017 Ubidays trailer and leaked gameplay. The trademark humor is kept, but there's way more swearing than the original game.
- Desert Punk:
- In stark contrast to the first game's City on the Water setting... at least for this specific Indian-inspired city on this specific planet.
- The pre-2017 leaked gameplay trailer takes place on a similar planet, if not the same one. The Ubidays 2017 trailer also features Jade and Pey'j in the desert.
- Designer Babies: Cloning actually became the only way to populate System 3, so everyone in the solar system was designed from the limited number of DNA strains available onboard the very first spaceship. Now these clones—particularly the hybrids—are designed to fulfill a certain role in society. Turning to piracy is the ultimate act of rebellion, as it's seen as defying your ordered place in the universe.
- The Dreaded: Jade, who's referred to as a "demoness" for hunting down and slaying pirates throughout System 3.
- Earth Drift: Inverted. The prequel's publicity has so far referenced Somalia and Switzerland, and establishes that the universe of BG&E is that of space colonies descended from Earth, with the Talking Animals being the result of genetic hybrids. While the world of the first game made reference to being a system colony, the suggestion of a wider galaxy was there, but merely implied.
- The Engineer: Callum is the Chief Engineer for the crew.
- Expendable Clone: According to the developers, the first expeditions that left Earth to explore the solar system were made up of clones of Earth's top experts, rather than risk "real" people being at risk to the hostile conditions.
- Family-Friendly Firearms: Averted, with the first game's Frickin' Laser Beams being replaced with (or at least accompanied by) actual bullets. This is yet another element that carries on from the leaked gameplay trailer.
- Fantastic Racism: In addition to being used as slave labors, hybrids also are prohibited from accessing the upper echelons of society or even the temples they helped build.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Focuses on the city of Ganesha, colonized by people from "Old Earth", more specifically from India and Southeast Asia.
- Genre Shift: The first game was a Zelda-like Action Adventure with a female lead who was a photographer, and resistance fighter, and featured stealth/puzzle and limited combat. The upcoming second entry is an RPG with a customizable Player Character who is a Space Pirate seeking to advance in the ranks from lowly grunt to The Captain.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Just like the original Beyond Good & Evil half man/half animal hybrids return, only this time we discover their origins as genetically engineered slave labor designed to withstand hostile areas in space.
- Hero Killer: Jade who hunts down and kills pirates throughout System 3. It's said coming face-to-face with her doesn't end well for a pirate crew.
- Indy Ploy: Shani and Knox managed to elude the cops chasing them by hijacking a police cruiser in flight. Most of the missiles fired at them hit their pursuers instead and the rest slam into a police ship that was trying to cut them off when the duo divert their hoverbike towards it.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Shani is introduced saying "It's about bloody time".
- Lethal Chef: The rest of the crew accuse Pey'j as being this. Judging from the state of the crew at the time, its less that about the taste of his chili and more the alcohol content.
- Meaningful Name: Shani's name should be an immediate eyebrow-raiser for anyone familiar with the first game.
- The Medic: Uma is the holistic Chief Medic for the pirate crew. She uses advanced acupuncture technology with needles that turn red when they detect toxins.
- Mood Whiplash: The trailer start offs as a comedic action-packed scene of two of the protagonists making a daring escape after ripping off a big-deal gangster. Then they return to their ship to meet with their comrades and the mood turns more somber when we discover what was on the M-disk they stole.
- Pig Man:
- The E3 2017 trailer reveals Zhou Yuzhu, a pig man looking for a mysterious pig idol that shares a name (but not the same pronunciation) of good ol' Uncle Pey'j.
- The E3 2018 trailer confirms good ol' uncle Pey'j himself returns as a member of the Space Pirates crew.
- Prequel: Stated as such, taking place long before the DomZ invasion of Hyllis.
- Rank Up: In-between the E3 2017 and 2018 trailers, Shani has taken over as captain after their previous one went missing looking for Moksha.
- Real Is Brown:
- Compared to the original game, the footage shown so far indicates a more washed-out color scheme.
- The pre-2017 Ubidays and leaked gameplay trailer also share the same browner color scheme.
- Robo Sexual: The Gada's AI has a thing for the ship's engineer, Callum.
- Rogue Protagonist: The Wham Shot of the E3 2018 trailer reveals Jade leading what appears to be Alpha Section soldiers in attacking the Space Pirate protagonists. Though it's technically not an example of a good guy going bad for the sequel, since, despite the naming, Beyond Good & Evil 2 is a prequel, and Jade was revealed to have been part of the DomZ Priest in the previous game.
- Sapient Ship: The E3 2018 trailer shows the spaceship used by the protagonists, the Gada, is controlled by an AI who banters with the ship's engineer.
- Seers: Uma, the Chief Medical Officer, is described as a dubious oracle.
- Silly Simian: Knox, taking on the role of boisterous comedy relief from Pey'j and adding some monkey business, bruv!
- Smart People Play Chess: Callum, the ship's engineer, is the only person on the Gada smart enough to play chess against the ship's AI.
- Space Pirate: The sequel will focus on a group of space pirates as they make their way to an artifact in space in pursuit of "true freedom".
- Stock Scream: A Wilhelm Scream when the duo kick a guy from his ship.
- Unobtanium: Diwalight, a rare, valuable mineral that exists only on the side of Soma that's bombarded with constant meteor showers. Hybrids are essentially used as canon fodder to mine it, resulting in them dying by the hundreds only to retrieve small chunks of the mineral.
- Victoria's Secret Compartment: Zhou Yuzhu's lackey pulls a M-Disk from her cleavage.
- Wham Line: From the E3 2018 trailer: "J-Jade?"
- You Have Failed Me: If the hybrid slaves aren't able to collect their quota of diwalight, they're abandoned to die on the Death World side of Soma.