It’s hard to imagine that any modern gamer hasn’t played or at least heard of the Nintendo 64 version of 007 Goldeneye. At the time of its release it was the best first person shooter on consoles. When they remade the game for the Wii with Daniel Craig I was pretty excited. I loved the Craig Bond films and was disappointed that I didn’t own a Wii so I could play it. However now the game is available on the PS3 and 360 with some revamped graphics and a few more features so now I could finally try out the game. Unfortunately the better graphics and extra features aren’t enough to make this game live up to its birth right.
The game tells basically the same story as the GoldenEye movie in a more updated and modern time which apparently means looking at your cell phone every five seconds. They did do a good job of capturing the story of the film and translating it to today’s time but the means of storytelling really doesn’t let you enjoy this great story that is there. GoldenEye was one of my favorite Bond films and this game does the same thing that the previous Craig Bond games have done and mimics Call of Duty by conveying the entire story on a map screen with voice over. It’s a terrible way to tell a story and you don’t get a real sense of the action that is happening or care about the characters that you have to use aside from the fact that it’s James Bond.
There actually aren’t a lot of bad things to say about the multiplayer. It is a completely competent experience that tries really hard to be Call of Duty and only falls a little short. The game is more sluggish than your average shooter but multiplayer fans can still find a lot fun facing off against other players. There are more game modes than I can even hope to try out and there were new modes added that weren’t in the Wii version. Overall I found the regular team death match to be pretty satisfying. The MI6 Ops however is the new feature added to this game to make it worth sixty dollars but it may have been better left off. These are basically just challenge maps where you have to do some sneaking or shooting and either way gets pretty boring fast. The game also allows you to adjust every possible setting for the challenge making it almost completely pointless. I never found myself wanting to try them and when I did play them it just felt like repetitive nonsense.
GoldenEye is essentially Call of Duty with James Bond. Most of the game is just point and shoot. There are sometimes objectives where you have to take pictures with your cell phone but those are just doing the same thing with a phone. It controls just like any modern shooter which is only a good thing for this game and is the best thing going for it. Anyone who plays a lot of first person shooters should have no trouble just picking up the controller and blasting through the game. That also brings up another point. The game is not very difficult at all. I played through the first five chapters without dying once. There are a few moments where it feels like there are a lot of enemies coming from out of nowhere and you get surrounded and confused but those moments are rare and the bad guys are pretty easy to take down.
I had the most fun with the game when I was sneaking through the levels and it definitely seems like the game is set up to the point that if you are careful enough you could sneak through most of every level. The biggest issue with the game is that since it came from the Wii it feels kind of like a kid’s game. It’s too easy and doesn’t seem to lend itself to hardcore gamers.
While the game does look much better it still looks like a game with just an HD code slapped on top of it. There are parts of the game that look great but most of those happen at the beginning of the game. If you were to compare this version against the Wii version side by side you would notice a large difference but compared to other shooters on the 360 it hardly holds a torch. Where I felt the game lacked the most was when you were actually firing the weapons. The gunplay seemed more like paintball then actually shooting real guns (which makes the paintball mode much more interesting.) There is little muzzle flash and recoil on the weapons and the sound design just sounds very weak like every weapon has a silencer and even when guns do have a silencer that only makes them sound worse. The best looking part of the action is the first person takedowns. GoldenEye reloaded has really good first person interaction which is something I love in my FPS games and the takedowns do look really satisfying which is why I loved the sneaking so much.
Even though the game is easy and the story telling is flawed I still managed to have some fun with this game. It is refreshing to play a good James Bond game as there aren’t many out there and while people looking for the same experience as the original GoldenEye may be disappointed there are still reasons to play this game. The problem is the game is not worth full retail. This game would have been much better priced at forty or fifty dollars.
Shooting bad guys is still a satisfying experience but again I can’t recommend going stealth enough. You get the best James Bond experience by popping head shots with your silenced pistol or performing a take down on an unsuspecting enemy. Unfortunately the first level of the game is the strongest part but the rest is still fun to play through and whether you are renting this game or picking it up on the cheap you shouldn’t feel cheated.
While this game has its faults it will definitely appeal to the gamers who loved the Wii version or any hardcore James Bond fans. The shooting and controls are solid and if you love multiplayer there is still a good competitive online. With the single player being pretty easy it does present the opportunity to go through it again and try playing it different ways for a little more fun. I know I plan on playing more of the multiplayer here and there beyond the single player and I recommend this game for at least a rental because the single player and online are at least worth a play through.