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#1 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

I keep hearing, as recently as on the GB Freedom Stream, that games like GoldenEye, Perfect Dark, and Halo were only good if you had never played FPS games before, didn't own a PC, or just didn't understand what made games good.

This has become one of those videogame cliché's that people say over and over again to the point where it becomes "Fact" to people who weren't even around when these games came out. It's as common as the sister comment, "Halo was the first game that made FPS games work on console" (Forget all about Disruptor, a game from a little small time developer called Insomniac...)

But I have to ask, can someone actually justify that opinion?

GoldenEye came out in 1997, by my understanding. The key games happening on the PC at that time were Duke Nukem 3D, Quake, and if you were of that persuasion, Jedi Knight 2. Unreal was on the horizon, but it was still 3-4 years until "Unreal" meant anything with the release of Unreal Tournament.

Understand that there was no Half Life. PC games weren't doing grand interactive cutscenes. Most people had modems that were connecting over dial up. A few people had network access, but not many. Those that did were relegated to playing games that supported network play, and most of those games capped at 8 players. There was no mouselook. From what I remember, in the original Quake, which had little to no verticality in the level design, you had to hold down the "\" key to enable mouselook, which planted your characters feet and didn't count for aiming your gun (which was assisted anyhow, which means that, just like doom, shooting at ground level would hit enemies in towers above you... because the game was built with horizontal level design). In fact, I remember there being a huge backlash against quake when it first released. The current king of the hill was Duke Nukem for it's fantastic level design and innovative weapons. Even though quake was in 3d, people didn't want to like it because it lacked Duke's personality and sense of "cool". When Id released the demo a few months before release, PC Gamer even ran a cover basically saying "Quake sucks!" and had a whole article dumping on the game. It wasn't until months later that gamers got behind the network play and started to make Quake into the legend that it would become. (And it wasn't until Quake 3 that it really became the rocket jumping, track balling game that most people know it as being)

So, as much as I love both Duke and Quake, which are both some of my favorite games of all time, GoldenEye was still something really special. Not because it was a console game pretending it could compete with PC FPS games, but because it was LEGITIMATELY mind blowing at the time. It's use of traps (trip mines, etc.) had been used in DN, But Goldeneye brought them into 3d, and improved their usage. It's level design was fantastic. It's graphics were incredible for the time. And more than anything, it's use of missions was novel and interesting from a single player gameplay standpoint. Most games at the time were still doing "levels", (which I still enjoy) but Goldeneye brought in the concept of having "objectives". Some were even optional. And in a design decision I still think is absolutely genius and not copied nearly enough, the difficulty levels in the game were tied to objectives. So, the levels basically morphed into entirely new experiences based on the difficulty the player was playing. Playing thought the game again on hard didn't just mean enemies took more bullets, or that the player had less health, it meant that the player was actually going to new areas and doing entirely new things that were more challenging than earlier levels required the player to do. As a result, there was always a reason to play a level over again, but the "story" was not held up by a player being unable to play the game well. Also, it was one of the first games to give the player a sense of inhabiting an actual "character". Duke Nukem had done it before, so it wasn't the first, but Rare pulled a few great tricks to achieve the same result by different means.

Ultimately, as someone who owned both a PC and most of the leading consoles of the time, I could write essays on why Goldeneye, Perfect Dark, and Halo were great games in their own right and not just games that people played because they couldn't play PC games. That mindset is not only entirely fallacious, it's the domain of PC elitist who frequently seem to misremember gaming history.

I encourage someone to provide a different point of view, because as a Console and PC gamer who loves FPS I legitimately don't understand where that sentiment comes from.

#2 Edited by Chop (1992 posts) -

I don't really hear this out of anyone besides Brad and that's just Brad being Brad; you know how his foot lives in his mouth.

I <3 Brad btw, in case anyone construed me as being a negative troll D;

#3 Posted by MooseyMcMan (10384 posts) -

I didn't have a PC, and I thought Goldeneye was a bad game that didn't control well when I tried playing it in the 90s.

#4 Posted by GERALTITUDE (2862 posts) -

I think you're being a wee bit too thoughtful. Basically you just had a much higher frame-rate on the PC. Mouselook or not - FPS games were just much easier to control with a keyboard than a controller. I mean, just listen to Brad talk about framerates lol (I love you Brad). To some dudes that shit is everything. When you talk FPS on PC vs FPS on Console things like the actual level design, story, scripting, enemy behavior, difficulty level, it's all on the side. All the matters to most people in this debate is the raw mechanics, and it's hard to argue PC FPSs didn't run smoother...

The other qualities of GoldenEye that you mentioned *are* amazing, regardless of what system it was on. It was, yeah, a super sweet, legitimately impressive game at the time.

#5 Edited by CornBREDX (4757 posts) -

Good is subjective.

The controls for console FPS have always been poorer but a lot of people are used to the way they work and Halo was the first console game to perfect it (games like Golden eye and Perfect Dark did it some what successfully but wasn't quite there yet).

I still cant stand the way playing a shooter feels on a console, but it has come a long way. It has always felt natural with a mouse, even when we go back and there was no up and down axis (really), it was still miles ahead of console FPS'.

Still, though, it is subjective. Everyone has their experiences and tastes. I have played all classic console FPS at the time they were new, and I have never found them to be all that great. Removing the control- which again always felt inferior to me because a mouse feels more natural- I never liked the map layout of Halo or the way shooting feels. I never found playing Goldeneye or Perfect Dark to be all that fun.

It's not elitism; it's just preference. Console aiming feels slow, and makes sense with mech games or flight games due to the nature of a joystick. Control has gotten better, and I still play shooters on consoles from time to time, but as I grew up using the mouse, for me, the mouse is more natural. I know tastes are different.

From what I understood them to be saying on the recent stream, they feel the same. I know there is a generation now that may only know gamepad aiming, and have perfected it so it's probably just as accurate as me using a mouse/keyboard, but at one time the mouse/keyboard combo was ideal and it was the norm for a lot of people.

#6 Posted by JasonR86 (9587 posts) -

lol

#7 Posted by TheHT (10812 posts) -

I had a PC and played FPS games before, and I still really liked GoldenEye and Perfect Dark and Halo.

Don't dwell over statements like that.

#8 Posted by Zidd (1836 posts) -

I think its a game speed thing. Goldeneye and most modern shooters made for consoles move at a snails pace compared to what was on the PC in that day. Keep in mind Quake 2 was also released that year.

#9 Edited by Counterclockwork87 (581 posts) -

Goldeneye blows all FPS PC games of that era out of the water when it came to the campaign. Nothing even came close. It was the first first person shooter I can think of where it wasn't "kill kill kill," you had to use stealth and smarts to complete the objectives. Beating the Goldeneye campaign on the harder diffiulties was about sneaking around corners and shooting everyone silently.

It's an asinine argument, and it doesn't matter much anyway because Goldeneye is considered a legendary game.

#10 Posted by TheNihilisticIdealist (44 posts) -

I've said it once, and I'll say it again: GoldenEye 007 hasn't aged well. It's spiritual successor Perfect Dark is superior in every conceivable way.

#11 Edited by EvilNiGHTS (1093 posts) -

@chop said:

I don't really hear this out of anyone besides Brad and that's just Brad being Brad; you know how his foot lives in his mouth.

I <3 Brad btw, in case anyone construed me as being a negative troll D;

I think Jeff might have made that sentiment before.

Nonetheless, I do think it's a valid opinion, to be honest. The zeitgeist of Goldeneye rivals COD4 in a fashion, in the sense people were still talking about it like it was a new game years after its release, regardless of whether better games existed before or after it. Games like Quake 2 and Jedi Knight came out mere months after Goldeneye but ask the average male in his late 20s which was better and he'll probably say Goldeneye without really thinking about it.

Better games were coming out on the PC without question, but 3D gaming on the PC back then had enough barriers to entry that the average high school kid (in the UK at least) wouldn't have a whole lot to do with it. Thus Goldeneye got a lot more exposure, especially towards people who had only a moderate interest in gaming and may have owned a N64 but would never have bought a 3dfx card. Just one of those things sadly.

#12 Edited by Ares42 (2559 posts) -

I'd say you're looking at this from the wrong angle. Games that are cherished for their multiplayer usually have "lives", comparing how the games were at launch is too narrow-sighted. Sure, Quake and D3D might not have been perfect at launch, but as time went by they just grew and grew into better experiences. Also, while I can only speak for my own experience, it was a time in gaming when people didn't necessarily get games at launch due to poor distribution. I don't even know when most games from that era launched, but I would be very surprised if it didn't take a year or two (if not more) before I played many of the great games before this current generation/steam came around.

#13 Edited by Subjugation (4716 posts) -

It was a game of the time. I would argue that it was very good for the period, but it isn't really something you can go back to now.

#14 Edited by believer258 (11569 posts) -

As someone who really liked FPS games for a while, I did try to go back and play Goldeneye a few times and yes, it's really hard to control. All of the other things that might make it special are things I could appreciate if it was just easier to actually play.

#15 Posted by groin (833 posts) -

Your memory of Quake 1 is inaccurate. Mouselook was enabled by typing +mlook in the console. Most people would just add "+mlook" to the autoexec.cfg file so that it was enabled every time the game was started. Quake did not have the vertical aiming assist that was in Doom. Quake 1 had rocket jumping and was the fastest paced game in the series due to bunny hopping. Every Quake game was slightly slower paced than the previous entry. That is to say that Quake 1 plays faster than Quake 2. Quake 2 plays faster than Quake 3.

Quake 2 had bunny hopping on release but it was patched out in version 3.14. Version 3.14 introduced another movement related bug which resulted in strafe jumping. Id software decided to not to fix the bug because it made the game more fun to play. Quake 2 also has weird bugs with steps which allowed the player to get increased momentum by double jumping.

The strafe jumping bug was carried forward into Quake 3. Brad Shoemaker did not know how to strafe jump when he played Quake 3 on TNT.

Anyway, the Quake games are the greatest multiplayer FPS games of all time. Goldeneye is hot garbage.

#16 Posted by Jimbo (9769 posts) -

Nonsense. It wasn't good even if you didn't have a PC.

#17 Posted by JackG100 (403 posts) -

You can argue all you want, NOLF & NOLF 2 are better and more awesome games than Halo ever was.

#18 Posted by Demoskinos (14524 posts) -

I pretty much agree. PC stuff was great but the design of those games boiled down to kill kill kill. Goldeneye was fascinating with its par times for earning cheats and all the weird secret stuff packed into the game combined with all the clever objectives in the campaign that scaled with difficulty. I was one of the first interesting approaches to difficulty I ever saw. There is more to a game than mouse look and frame rate.

#19 Posted by Skytylz (4025 posts) -

@jimbo said:

Nonsense. It wasn't good even if you didn't have a PC.

I never had it at the time and when my friends talk about how great it was. I never share their feelings. It's literally impossible to enjoy without nostalgia.

#20 Posted by Humanity (8729 posts) -

I was a PC gamer until like 2007 and after having played massive open ended matches of Battlefield 1942 I could not comprehend what anyone found so revolutionary about Halo.

#21 Posted by Video_Game_King (35849 posts) -
Online
#22 Posted by Skytylz (4025 posts) -
#23 Posted by cloudymusic (1041 posts) -

I was a really big PC FPS gamer at the time, and I still loved Goldeneye. Like was said on the stream, it had little things that were cool like added objectives for higher difficulty levels, time challenges, a large variety of weapons, Bond gadgets, fun cheats, and a pretty authentic 007 feel overall. It was a totally different animal from PC FPS games, and I liked them both for different reasons.

I can totally see why people might not have liked it, but I don't agree with the sentiment of "that game was only fun if you had no access to PC gaming at all."

#24 Edited by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@groin said:

Your memory of Quake 1 is inaccurate. Mouselook was enabled by typing +mlook in the console. Most people would just add "+mlook" to the autoexec.cfg file so that it was enabled every time the game was started. Quake did not have the vertical aiming assist that was in Doom. Quake 1 had rocket jumping and was the fastest paced game in the series due to bunny hopping. Every Quake game was slightly slower paced than the previous entry. That is to say that Quake 1 plays faster than Quake 2. Quake 2 plays faster than Quake 3.

Quake 2 had bunny hopping on release but it was patched out in version 3.14. Version 3.14 introduced another movement related bug which resulted in strafe jumping. Id software decided to not to fix the bug because it made the game more fun to play. Quake 2 also has weird bugs with steps which allowed the player to get increased momentum by double jumping.

The strafe jumping bug was carried forward into Quake 3. Brad Shoemaker did not know how to strafe jump when he played Quake 3 on TNT.

Anyway, the Quake games are the greatest multiplayer FPS games of all time. Goldeneye is hot garbage.

I disagree.

Quake 1 DID have the same assists as Doom. I know this, because I played through Quake 1 entirely with a keyboard. In later releases mouselook was added to the game as a default, but as you mention, it had to be activated in it's original format and was not built into the gameplay.

#25 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -
#26 Posted by 71Ranchero (2673 posts) -

The control was fucking terrible. The way the gun swam around the screen was the worst.

#27 Posted by Sooty (8082 posts) -

100% true

#28 Posted by Video_Game_King (35849 posts) -
Online
#29 Posted by McGhee (6094 posts) -

The most fun to be had in that game was watching your friends run into proximity mines.

#30 Edited by Khann (2767 posts) -

Countless hundreds of hours were spent playing Goldeneye 4-player split screen with friends. If you want to look at it on a technical level, maybe it's not so great, but god damn was the multiplayer fun with friends.

#31 Edited by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@zidd said:

I think its a game speed thing. Goldeneye and most modern shooters made for consoles move at a snails pace compared to what was on the PC in that day. Keep in mind Quake 2 was also released that year.

See, I agree with you 100%, but personally, even as much as I love Quake1, I really enjoyed the pace that Goldeneye moved at because I felt like a person instead of an omnidirectional flying death robot.

That's one of the reasons I never got into tournament-style FPS games.

#32 Posted by MAGZine (435 posts) -
@groin said:

Anyway, the Quake games are the greatest multiplayer FPS games of all time. Goldeneye is hot garbage.

And Ford's vehicles were the greatest of all time. /s

Quake is good (great?) for what it is, but there are other games that are arguably just as good (or better) than Quake in different aspects.

Like team play/team mechanics, for example...

#33 Posted by groin (833 posts) -

@magzine said:
@groin said:

Anyway, the Quake games are the greatest multiplayer FPS games of all time. Goldeneye is hot garbage.

And Ford's vehicles were the greatest of all time. /s

Quake is good (great?) for what it is, but there are other games that are arguably just as good (or better) than Quake in different aspects.

Like team play/team mechanics, for example...

Ford would be the equilavent of Halo. Quake games are more like Ferraris / Lamborghinis. Quake had great teamplay in team deathmatch and capture the flag modes.

#34 Posted by august (3825 posts) -

Goldeneye is fucking amazing accomplishment but being a pc fps fan and sitting down to control a fps on the n64 controller for the first time with your friends was kind of like finding out they were secretly into cutting themselves.

#35 Posted by nintendork666 (203 posts) -

Two words: local multiplayer.

#36 Posted by Klei (1768 posts) -

Honestly... I had a PC at that time, and I was majorly a PC gamer. I was a kid, though, about 10 or 11 at the time. I also had a n64 with GoldenEye. All my friends seemed to love that game, and we played it for hundreds of hours in split-screen, but I didn't really love it all that much. It was an okay game to me, nothing more.

Because, you know, a year later, I'd get titles like Half-Life, Baldur's Gate, Grim Fandango and so on for my PC. Pretty much disconnected me from the console realm until the PS2 days.

#37 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@august said:

Goldeneye is fucking amazing accomplishment but being a pc fps fan and sitting down to control a fps on the n64 controller for the first time with your friends was kind of like finding out they were secretly into cutting themselves.

I can absolutely appreciate that it was different, and probably hard to get used to. But different doesn't equal bad.

As a hardcore gamer who played almost everything that came out back then, I remember it being really hard/annoying to switch from using a straight keyboard to using a keyboard and mouse. Then I remember it being hard and annoying to switch from using arrow keys to using wasd keys. My friend a pro-level quake player who used a trackball on Quake. I HATED playing with the trackball even if he killed me every match with it and it was a superior controller.

#38 Posted by Itwongo (1101 posts) -

I never liked GoldenEye. I thought it controlled poorly. I didn't come around on the fps until halo. Granted, I was never exposed to quake and all that.

#39 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@klei said:
Because, you know, a year later, I'd get titles like Half-Life, Baldur's Gate, Grim Fandango and so on for my PC. Pretty much disconnected me from the console realm until the PS2 days.

All fantastic games. I think I have such fond memories of that generation because I had just built my first PC from parts and running Half Life felt brought about a great sense of satisfaction.

#40 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11423 posts) -

The difference is that there are still legitimate reasons to enjoy Quake's brand of absurdly fast FPS crazy, whereas Goldeneye is only appreciable in a nostalgic sense, because those controls do not hold up. I feel like Alexis gave a pretty good defense of that game during that part of the stream, so I'm not sure what the real outrage is.

Online
#41 Posted by EXTomar (4453 posts) -

Any game where you had to have "house rules" because the player couldn't aim correctly seems to indicate me that it is flawed game.

#42 Edited by Veektarius (4541 posts) -

Goldeneye was a great game with bad controls.

#43 Posted by Reisz (1455 posts) -

This thread just reminded me of par times. God damn, that was some fun.

#44 Edited by Scroll (593 posts) -

Goldeneye was a clumsy blurry mess but it had pretty solid multiplayer. Apart from controls I can't remember playing a more complex fps on the pc at that time. Sure a year later Half life happened but a year is a long time and Half life had terrible multiplayer.

#45 Edited by Djstyles92 (952 posts) -

The multiplayer is the reason I love the game. I couldn't begin to tell you how many all nighters my friends and I had.

#46 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3770 posts) -

@chop: nah Jeff says the same thing. Those dudes say a lot of things. They grumble about a lot of games I like its all just opinion. I'd bet there were PC gamers who thought Quake was balls. The idea that early FPS games are somehow superior to games like Goldeneye is a matter of taste. Don't get me wrong i respect those dudes but I don't always agree with them.

#47 Posted by Daneian (1202 posts) -

@mcghee said:

The most fun to be had in that game was watching your friends run into proximity mines.

Putting one on the center column that divided the 4 way path in Aztec equals hilarious.

#48 Edited by Maajin (1052 posts) -
#49 Posted by MAGZine (435 posts) -

@groin said:

@magzine said:
@groin said:

Anyway, the Quake games are the greatest multiplayer FPS games of all time. Goldeneye is hot garbage.

And Ford's vehicles were the greatest of all time. /s

Quake is good (great?) for what it is, but there are other games that are arguably just as good (or better) than Quake in different aspects.

Like team play/team mechanics, for example...

Ford would be the equilavent of Halo. Quake games are more like Ferraris / Lamborghinis. Quake had great teamplay in team deathmatch and capture the flag modes.

my point went totally over your head. Quake is good for twitch shooters, but that doesn't make it the be-all-end-all of the FPS genre. There are reasons Counterstrikes and battlefields and teamfortresses and halos are predominantly played today.

Ford makes a hell of a lot better truck than either of those, but then again, the Ford Fusion... lol...

#50 Posted by MormonWarrior (2534 posts) -

The first FPS I ever really enjoyed was Perfect Dark. I had played some Doom/other PC shooters and thought they sucked. I never thought GoldenEye was all that good though. It's okay.

And the first Halo was better than any shooters before it, and even for many years after it there were still shooters going with old conventions (Medal of Honor, Half-Life, etc.) that felt dated upon release.