• February 3rd (and again on (early) February 5th) • Xbox 360 (via Xenia emulator) • Leaked XBLA Remaster •
✓ Completed campaign on Agent
You can blow up the boxes in Train and find the secret RC-P90. There's a computer monitor hidden inside of several tiny boxes in Caverns. You can shoot through the door windows in Bunker and can still remain unseen. The same enemy waves, the same weird tics, the same level design - this is Goldeneye, all right. But, like - the KF7 soviet doesn't look like a pencil anymore. In fact, most of the weapons look like actual weapons instead of weird, abstract objects. It's Goldeneye, yeah, but with a new pretty textures here and there.
As far as retexturing and remasters go, Goldeneye 007 for XBLA is probably as faithful as it gets. A lot of the work on this probably informed the Perfect Dark XBLA re-release, given it had the same great controls + frame rate, but without the retexturing. It's a fuckin' strange product - or, lack thereof given this 2007 beta build was leaked just this week. I love playing unfinished video games, because you always get to see a fraction of what the development process is like. The placeholders, the glitches, the unfinished parts - it's bizarre how this version doesn't even have proper lighting in some levels, or how Statue is rendered even less legible because there's no skybox. It's so fucking cool, aside from being a pretty and more playable version of Goldeneye. Like, imagine what could've been if this miraculously ended up coming out? Do you think we would've been spared that fucking pitiful reimagining from Activision? Who knows, but more importantly, I bet it would've helped people understand why they liked Goldeneye in the first place.
Like, I love Goldeneye so much, but I don't have any affinity for the James Bond name whatsoever. I like fast, fun first person shooters and Goldeneye was one with a super sharp eye for details, single player innovation and a no-frills, fun-as-shit split screen mode. Goldeneye wasn't good because it was a James Bond game, though I'm sure the big name lent some sort of credibility to it. The fact that its success tainted James Bond games forever by forcing them to chase after some sort of lightning-in-a-bottle FPS rush is, in retrospect, fucking bizarre. James Bond, from my understanding was never about gunning millions of dudes down. You can fuckin', like, dual wield SMGs in this game and how has that ever been a James Bond thing???
I feel like no matter what kind of game Goldeneye was - racing game, puzzle game, action adventure, fuckin' anything - as long as it was this detailed, innovative and popular with multiplayer, it would've still set the standard for what Bond games would be like in the future. Alas, everyone thinks that Bond games need to be this, while completely missing the point on what *this* even is.
I don't know. Rare, Microsoft, and everyone in between have said it more times than I have, but Goldeneye is one big, fuckin' headache when you take it out of the extremely specific context that birthed its success. Whether this game being shelved was for the best or not, will probably forever be up to the gods. Being able to play the beta version of it was one hell of a thrilling curiosity, but beyond that, I genuinely don't give a shit.
Some stray thoughts:
- I fell to my death in Cradle, but still managed to complete the mission? I've never seen that happen before.
- Statue is one of the most fucked up and unrecognizable levels in any video game. Playing it unfinished somehow made it even less legible.
- The placeholder faces for all the models are so fucking funny, dude.