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GoldenEye Rides A Very Strange Line

There's something sort of weird about remaking levels from someone else's game, but this modernized GoldenEye is no simple remake.


Activision announced a new game called GoldenEye 007 at Nintendo's press conference to uproarious applause from folks with fond memories for the last game to bear that name. But after digging a bit deeper into this whole project, it's sort of weird and not exactly what you'd expect. For starters, it feels like a modern shooter, not a remake of an N64 game.

The first thing you might notice about this Eurocom-developed game is that James Bond is now being played by the current movie Bond, Daniel Craig. In addition to Craig's involvement, Judi Dench is reprising her role as M. The original writer of the movie has been brought on to "update" the story of the movie to make it fit better with a more modern Bond. So you'll still see characters like Alec Trevelyan and General Ourumov, but the game now takes place in 2010. In-game gadgets have also been given a fresh coat of paint, so you'll hack computers with a smartphone in the new game.

So it's telling a story that's roughly the same and taking you through a lot of the same sequences from the original game... but it also has very little to do with the actual game. Rare, the developer of the original GoldenEye, isn't involved with the project, so the levels can't be 1:1 remakes. But you'll still see some familiar sequences in new ways. The game still features the dam sequence and offers similar (though, I suspect, not legally actionable) design.

The other major difference comes from the game's controls. While you can play with a Wii Remote and Nunchuk, if that's your thing, I played the game with a Classic Controller Pro. With two analog sticks and plenty of shoulder buttons, the game simply plays like a modern console-based first-person shooter. None of the swimmy analog gun movement from the original is there at all, and you can now vault over low barriers. Heck, you can even hold down the left trigger to aim down the sights. With that control scheme in place, the game feels like a Bond-themed Call of Duty game.

The multiplayer in GoldenEye includes four-player splitscreen, which I suppose you kind of have to put in there if you're going to write "GoldenEye" on the box. But it'll also have eight-player online with standard deathmatch and objective-based modes. It sounds like there will be some persistence to the online multiplayer, include a perks system that, you guessed it, sounds just like something you'd find in a Call of Duty game. Classic character models from the Bond franchise will be present, including Jaws, Scaramanga, and Oddjob, who throws his hat instead of lobbing grenades. Some of these characters and other customizable options will be unlocked along the way.

Visually the game looks pretty good, and the action Activision showed off looked pretty intense, with some good melee kill animations. When you marry that to a proper, modern control scheme, you get a game that manages to recall the original game just enough to remind you that it was a popular N64 game without making you ignore all of the things that console shooter developers have learned over the last 13 years. It's out this holiday season on the Wii. Jeff Gerstmann on Google+
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Posted by Jeff

Activision announced a new game called GoldenEye 007 at Nintendo's press conference to uproarious applause from folks with fond memories for the last game to bear that name. But after digging a bit deeper into this whole project, it's sort of weird and not exactly what you'd expect. For starters, it feels like a modern shooter, not a remake of an N64 game.

The first thing you might notice about this Eurocom-developed game is that James Bond is now being played by the current movie Bond, Daniel Craig. In addition to Craig's involvement, Judi Dench is reprising her role as M. The original writer of the movie has been brought on to "update" the story of the movie to make it fit better with a more modern Bond. So you'll still see characters like Alec Trevelyan and General Ourumov, but the game now takes place in 2010. In-game gadgets have also been given a fresh coat of paint, so you'll hack computers with a smartphone in the new game.

So it's telling a story that's roughly the same and taking you through a lot of the same sequences from the original game... but it also has very little to do with the actual game. Rare, the developer of the original GoldenEye, isn't involved with the project, so the levels can't be 1:1 remakes. But you'll still see some familiar sequences in new ways. The game still features the dam sequence and offers similar (though, I suspect, not legally actionable) design.

The other major difference comes from the game's controls. While you can play with a Wii Remote and Nunchuk, if that's your thing, I played the game with a Classic Controller Pro. With two analog sticks and plenty of shoulder buttons, the game simply plays like a modern console-based first-person shooter. None of the swimmy analog gun movement from the original is there at all, and you can now vault over low barriers. Heck, you can even hold down the left trigger to aim down the sights. With that control scheme in place, the game feels like a Bond-themed Call of Duty game.

The multiplayer in GoldenEye includes four-player splitscreen, which I suppose you kind of have to put in there if you're going to write "GoldenEye" on the box. But it'll also have eight-player online with standard deathmatch and objective-based modes. It sounds like there will be some persistence to the online multiplayer, include a perks system that, you guessed it, sounds just like something you'd find in a Call of Duty game. Classic character models from the Bond franchise will be present, including Jaws, Scaramanga, and Oddjob, who throws his hat instead of lobbing grenades. Some of these characters and other customizable options will be unlocked along the way.

Visually the game looks pretty good, and the action Activision showed off looked pretty intense, with some good melee kill animations. When you marry that to a proper, modern control scheme, you get a game that manages to recall the original game just enough to remind you that it was a popular N64 game without making you ignore all of the things that console shooter developers have learned over the last 13 years. It's out this holiday season on the Wii.
Posted by Killazilla

I can't wait for this game

Posted by Dipstick

4 player splitscreen? Cool D:

Posted by zoozilla

A very strange line, indeed.

Posted by Bucketdeth

Well that just ruined a lot of hope I had for this : (

Posted by StarFoxA

I'm cautiously optimistic for this game.

Edited by L33tfella_H

 "In addition to Craig's involvement, Judi Dench is playing the role of M."
 
the craig part is suprising, but Judi Dench played M in the goldeneye film aswell, marking her first appearance as bond's new superior. so it's not exactly a "new thing".
 
EDIT: if he means that statement in the way that Judi Dench is actually providing voice acting and all that, then i see what he meant.

Posted by Blueman

I know this game will probably be shit, but i can not wait.

Posted by bcjohnnie

This game might turn out to be good, but I have to say that going in this direction makes their marketing campaign for it at the press conference even more ridiculous.
 
Hey kids, remember how much you loved to play Goldeneye? 
 
Great!! Now forget about that and play some Call of Duty like all the other kids do these days.

Posted by Mechanized

lol 
 
I'm surprised you even looked into this game considering the amazing amount of hate you had toward people positively reacting to its announcement. Nice to see you have an open enough mind to look into it further. :)

Posted by Yummylee

Could be a very successful FPS for the wii, just for its brand name alone. But also hopefully because it'll actually be a great FPS.

Posted by jonnyboy

Waste of time, effort and money. 
 
Oh wait, It's got Goldeneye in the title? SOLD!

Posted by gunslingerNZ

Not for a minute did I expect this to be anything but a cheap cash in. Goldeneye was a fantastic console shooter for its time but things have developed so far since then that it really doesn't hold up very well at all.
 
The game is going to be made by completely different people, replaces the best bond of the modern era with joe action hero and it's being developed for the Wii giving it a severe handicap right from the outset.

Everyone knows shooters age the least well of all game genres and putting this old dog out with a new coat of paint (a terrible colour choice at that) is not a good move.

Posted by DukeTogo

Not sure what your meaning was in mentioning Judi Dench.  She was M in Goldeneye, so that's not weird like Craig is.
 
At this point I don't think the people that want this really know what it is they want from it.  Nostalgia is a powerful thing, but it blinds you from reason at times.  You remember the good things from long ago, but rarely can you re-live that feeling, especially when it's something tied to technology.  I remember going back and buying the Transformers TV show DVDs, 5 minutes in I was wondering what the Hell I saw in the show back then.  I just destroyed some fond memories of my childhood by trying to relive them, instead of leaving them in the past with the safety of a fuzzy memory.
 
So if you loved Goldeneye back then, the best thing you could do is not buy this game and just reminisce.

Posted by itsmadness

I still don't really care about this. But who knows, maybe it wil be good.

Posted by DevWil

wha...? 
 
file this under noscon
 
all this info makes me think this could actually be...like...good.  i can't help but feel like it's going to make a lot of fans of the original game go "wtf", though.

Posted by apoptosis61

this game brings memories

Posted by CyleMoore

Great write up, I might check this game out after the reviews come out.

Posted by Mikewrestler5

I don't care about this. It does nothing for me.
If I wanted to play GoldenEye, I would bust out the N64.

Posted by Gyoru

Nostalgia glasses in full effect

Posted by gesi1223

The original Goldeneye gameplay was shit compared to what's been made now. I'm glad they are updating it, even if it's being updated to a very easy style of FPS. Call of Duty gameplay is perfect for a console though.

Posted by agentboolen

Sounds pretty good, with that said I owned the original N64 Goldeneye game and remember how good that was for its time.  Now a days the current games (BF, GOW, Halo, COD) Multiplayer blows the N64 Goldeneye game away so it definitely needed to be updated.  I think this could be a good fun Wii game but I don't think its needed on the Xbox 360 or PS3....  Unless its brilliant and better then anything else out there, which i kind of doubt.  
 
Decent idea, great way for the Big N to capitalize on the love for the original Goldeneye, but I still feel kind of in the middle on this one.

Posted by Double0hFor

this will probably be as bad as the Goldeneye game EA brought out some years back......... or worse. fuck activision, why couldnt they just make a bond game, not another cod

Posted by BergDK
@gunslingerNZ:

Wait.... what...Did you just write Pierce Brosnan was a good "Bond"


Posted by Tennmuerti

I cannot wait to not play this.

Posted by Ciffy

didn't see the appeal then, probably won't see the appeal this time either... sometimes I feel like i'm the only one that doesn't "get" FPSs.

Posted by HandsomeDead

This seems like the most cynical game since the Prince of Persia reboot. I have no idea why anyone would be interested in this.

Posted by rohanspear345

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Posted by willsmith

Let the haters hate, I'm going to play this.

Posted by Soulglove

Also, Steam version still looks better.

Posted by VoshiNova

I literally can't believe people are excited for this, Goldeneye had it's time- let it be.

Posted by TheHBK

When this game hits the bargain bin, I will buy it.
Edited by Cybexx

This game confuses me. So what I'm getting is that this is basically Activision's  take on EA's Goldeneye Rouge Agent, from the perspective of lets make a game with that name, but it is much more literal to the first game than that game was and doesn't have to try very hard to be better. 
 
I am still kind of bummed out that the 360 XBLA port of Goldeneye fell through due to Nintendo not being co-operative. So this whole thing feels kind of weird from that perspective. Add on the fact that this feels like it is based off a phantom modern day remake  of the Goldeneye movie, which didn't come out that long ago, possible to get around licensing problems? This just seems to be on Wii because of Nintendo's stubbornness, its good to hear it actually has online multiplayer because the initial impressions sounded like this was split screen only and I'm not in High School anymore. 
 
This could end up being cool, but it is carrying a lot of baggage and its being developed by a developer with just an average track record who already created some fairly mediocre FPS bond games. Hope this ends up being a pleasant surprise, but I really have a bad feeling about how the final product will turn out.

Posted by ImperiousRix

I just keep thinking, "Huh?  What?" every time I see this game.  To me... re-making this game is kinda beside the point, isn't it?  It'd be like if Rare completely re-made Perfect Dark.

Posted by Chris2KLee

Definitely a weird project. The classic controller support is a good sign, but I does feel like they are trying as hard as then can to cash in on the old Goldeneye name, while delivering a modern experience. I have a bad feeling they are not gonna please anyone with this, but I wish the team well.

Posted by Kazona

At least they're not just rehashing the original, which makes me more positive about this remake.

Posted by jos1ah
@gunslingerNZ:
Did you even read Jeff's impressions? He said it's NOT just a fresh coat of paint. ...Kids.
Posted by CaptainFish

I'm kind of confused. Did previous Activision COD-esque shooters play like this on the Wii? Because then it's basically a skin with 4 player co-op. Also I'm wondering how it will control with the remote and nunchuk since I don't have 4 classic controllers. How will that work with the 4 player split screen being so small? I understand it's fun to say "eff the wii remote, give me a controller", but that isn't always the most common experience especially with the 4 player stuff in this case.

Posted by Korosuzo

After reading this I'm a little optimistic on what it could turn out to be.

Posted by Gaff
@DukeTogo: Because Activision took the effort to cast the same actor from 13 years ago, while the rest is getting updated? 
 
But yeah, other than the title, it seems like a completely different game. Forget this remake, and keep the fond memories (and occasional sketches).
Edited by clubsammich

Eh, you don't need to remake the whole game, just give it a proper Virtual Console release. If I wan't to play GoldenEye 007, I would just pop it into my old N64 anyway. Not flop down 50$ for a "Modernized" version of a game that  I've invested a good chunk of time into. 

Posted by lmenzol

daniel craig? gay

Posted by runin

lookin good!

Posted by mrgreenfish

wonder if a graphically superior version will come to xbox and ps3 further down the road

Posted by Radar

DO NOT WANT

Posted by carlthenimrod

I have zero faith in this game. Treyarch has already failed once at making a James Bond game.

Posted by Crushed

I was kinda wondering if this game was CoD: Bond Edition. Not expecting the best result, but it'll be interesting to see if it at least turns out decent.

Posted by ChristianCastillo
@lmenzol said:
" daniel craig? gay "
this killed it for me
Posted by TheFreeMan
@willsmith said:
" Let the haters hate, I'm going to play this. "
This for me, too.
Posted by zonerover

"Bond-themed Call of Duty game". Last time we heard that, people were getting excited, but I'm pretty sure Casino Royale: The Game didn't do too well with reviewers or the public in general. I hope that they do better than Rogue Agent, for old times sake.

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