For ‘GoldenEye’ at least, it’s good Bond is back

jheeter@macon.comNovember 12, 2010 

James Bond has stayed in the news plenty over the past few months.

Problems facing Bond studio MGM have made moving forward with the movie franchise difficult.

By the time the studio resolves its financial mess, it could be the longest break between Bond films since the series started with “Dr. No” in 1962.

But for those looking for a Bond fix, two games featuring the British secret agent have hit stores in recent weeks.

The Nintendo Wii remake of “GoldenEye 007” hit stores the same day as “Blood Stone 007,” an original story in the Bond universe.

Only one of the games, however, will make you celebrate Bond’s return.

The original “GoldenEye 007,” which was developed by Rare, was one of the best-selling games for the Nintendo 64. The game was way ahead of its time with a pioneering multiplayer mode in addition to a standout campaign mode.

One of my friends here in Macon still plays the game and brags continuously about his skill at playing the game 13 years after its release.

Rare used the engine to create another outstanding game in “Perfect Dark.”

Activision, which now has the Bond license, obviously wanted to recreate the nostalgic feel of the original with the remake. The developer accomplished that by delivering a game that stayed very close to the original. The changes are small.

The game is noteworthy because it’s easily the best shooter released thus far on the Wii. The original game is a classic, so expecting a game on the same level wouldn’t be fair. But the remake of “GoldenEye 007” still stands out.

The same can’t be said for “Blood Stone 007,” which is available for the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3.

Activision got together the Bond crew (Daniel Craig and Judi Dench) for an original story involving a terrorist plot and biological weapons.

“Blood Stone 007” has similarities to other games that use cover during battles as an important strategy. It also takes a page from “Splinter Cell Conviction” with its “focus aiming” system.

You play through action levels with the goal of shooting your way through the board. Also mixed in are driving levels.

The driving levels are the most maddening. This is a gripe I have with most Bond games. Why must there be driving?

Batman has a car, but the strong Batman games don’t have you behind the wheel of the Batmobile. Just because James Bond drives doesn’t mean you as a gamer have to control that aspect.

It’s hard to see where you’re going in the vehicle, and the car or boat controls are inconsistent. If you’re going to include driving missions, then you better perfect the driving mechanics. They didn’t here. The rest of the game is very formulaic. You don’t need this game if you already have “Quantum of Solace.”

“GoldenEye 007” is without question the one of the two to buy if you have access to a Wii. It can surely hold you over until the next Bond flick comes out.

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