Legendary video game creator Michel Ancel has decided to call time on his career in the games industry, nudging Ubisoft to give fans a long, long overdue update on Beyond Good & Evil 2.
Michel Ancel announced his decision today on Instagram, deciding to turn in his mouse and keyboard to focus instead on the real world and the preservation of animals. “My new project takes place in the real world and consists in a wild life open sanctuary dedicated to education, nature lovers and… wild animals,” he wrote.
It’s a fantastic and truly worthwhile endeavour at a time when climate change and the impact mankind is having on our planet is seeing vast number of species becoming endangered and going extinct. We wish Michel well in his endeavour.
That said, it obviously leaves question marks over the two concurrent projects he had been involved with over the last half decade – the independent production Wild, and Beyond Good & Evil 2 – however he said that both teams have been working without his direct input for quite some time.
Still, it’s somewhat concerning for the future of Beyond Good & Evil 2, which was a cancelled project revived for E3 2017, just when it seemed that Ancel was on the way out and leaving Ubisoft. It seems that his passion project will continue on without him.
A statement from BG&E2 Senior Producer Guillaume Brunier reads:
For years, Michel imparted his creative vision and helped us remain faithful to BG&E’s incredible universe. His uncompromising passion pushed us to redefine what was possible in crafting an expansive, multicultural, and futuristic science-fiction world. As we move forward, we are all committed to remaining true to this vision.
As Michel noted, he hasn’t been directly involved in BG&E2 for some time now, as the team have been hard at work building on top of the solid creative foundation he helped shape. The team’s collective strength has us well on our way to developing a flagship next-generation action-adventure game. We recently passed an important internal milestone, delivering a build that proves our Space Pirate Fantasy and offers hours of gameplay and an incredible level of freedom in a seamless online sandbox, building upon the promise of our tech demos shown at E3. I’m incredibly proud of the team’s perseverance, dedication to each other and ongoing commitment to developing an amazing game.
We still have a lot more to do to, and we’re ramping up the size of the team to help. We recently added Ubisoft Paris as a partner studio, and in the past six months many new people have joined us here in Ubisoft Montpellier. If you’re interested in being part of the team, visit our careers site and search for keyword “Beyond Good & Evil 2.”
Next milestone: We are aiming to share more and show you the game in action sometime next year, once we pass our next internal production milestones.
We know many of you are eager to hear more from the team, get more detail on the story and universe, and try out the gameplay. We’re equally excited to share all of that with you, but we will take the time needed to get it right. We want to go beyond the high expectations you have of us, and that we have for ourselves.
Thank you for your patience, and remember we’re always happy to have your feedback, whether through the Space Monkey program, by collaborating and contributing with other fans via our HitRecord partnership, or by chatting with us in the forums.