I mentioned this in passing yesterday, and couldn't believe that I've never mentioned it before today. Beyond Good and Evil is not just one of the most underrated games ever made. It is THE most underrated game ever made.
As wikipedia so wonderfully sums up the basic story:
Beyond Good and Evil takes place on the futuristic planet of Hillys, where a mix of human,anthropomorphic animal, alien, and robotic species co-exist. The planet is under siege by alien DomZ forces. The DomZ abduct beings on Hillys, and either drain their life force for their own, or implant them with spores that convert them into creatures that work for the DomZ. A militant force called the "Alpha Sections" emerges to defend the populace. However, the Alpha Sections have a mysterious secret hiding beneath their helmets. An underground group ofjournalists, the IRIS Network, attempt to uncover the secrets of the DomZ and the Alpha Sections and expose the truth to the population of Hillys.You follow Jade, a photo journalist / adoptive parent / all out wonderwoman who joins the underground IRIS network as mentioned above. What follows is one of the most magnificent stories ever told in a videogame and an experience that you'll never forget. This game just oozes with charm, which is just what you'd expect from it's writer and developer Michel Ancel (that's the creator of Rayman, the developer of the fantastic King Kong and more recently the Raving Rabbids series) . It's one of those great, beautiful game that you never forget. It's an experience, a life affirming at that. You walk away feeling.... fulfilled, at peace. Yes, the gameplay can at times be frustrating and some of the sections are bland but give me a world that can combine fascists space oppression and talking animals, blended within a narrative surrounding photojournalism and religious connotations and I'll not only eat my hat but my shoes as well.
If you haven't played this game, and I presume a lot of you fall into this category, get yourself to eBay and be enlightened. Especially seeing as the sequel is currently in development.