Nut Load. Mini reviews of games old and new. No fuss. No spoilers. Occasional shock face.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

GoldenEye 007 (1997)

Genre: Awesome as Fuck | Players: 1 – 4 | Developer: Rare

It’s hard to believe in the current gaming climate that a title based on a movie licence could be so damn good, but this one was and still is. I acknowledge the debt the FPS genre owes to Doom (1993) and Quake (1996) and the like, but, for me and many others, GoldenEye is the pinnacle and the epitome of the FPS. I don’t even like FPS games in general, but it has something special and that ingredient wasn't James Bond, because I don’t even like Bond very much either.

The single player story has you playing through events of the 1995 film of the same name. You have objectives to fulfil and access to level-specific gadgets to help achieve them. Some objectives are optional, but you're rewarded at the end for doing them and for the time taken.
Unlock the hardest mode (007 Mode) and you can even tinker with enemy attributes, increasing or lessening health, accuracy, damage and reaction time.

It finds a balance between linearity and player freedom that lets you do certain objectives in the order that best suits your playing style. You can go stealthy, choose to go all out with guns blazing, or more sensibly mix the two in an adaptive style that gives you the best of both worlds.

The quality of the game, the calibre of the developer and the sheer enjoyment attained from having 4 players onscreen at the same time, in the same room, with one-shot-kill turned on remains unsurpassed.
The Facility is the most perfectly designed level in a FPS that I've ever seen. The tight corridors and dangerous corners make every gaming session a tense, pants-shitting joy to play. It was so good they recreated it for Perfect Dark (2000).

It helps that I think the N64 controller is the best one Nintendo ever made, despite not having a second analogue stick. It fits in the hand beautifully, it has that satisfyingly responsive Z trigger and the additional, optional Rumble Pak gives it extra weight that makes it feel even more solid. If you're a real pro you can even have a controller in each hand and fire dual wielded pistols independently!

5 indicative barrel twitches out of 5

1 comment:

Impudent Urinal said...

It was great at the time, but I don't think it holds up with replay. The controller bit is definitely debateable.

3 I was the prick who picked oddjob out of 5