There are characters in literature that become so iconic that they provide amazing stories and adventures for decades and James Bond is one of those characters. An international super spy with A License to Kill, James Bond delivers one spectacular mission after another and now his mission will take him deep into Russia as he tries to uncover the secrets of GoldenEye.
When GoldenEye first came out it was on the Nintendo 64 and it immediately solidified itself as a standard setter for future games to be, unfortunately for us that the following re-releases of GoldenEye were more like BlackEye. It almost felt like developers were trying too hard and in the process taking something that once was great and making it mediocre. Gamers for years have been demanding a GoldenEye game for the current generation consoles that delivers the same quality enjoyment that everyone remembers finding back in the Nintendo 64 era. Now with GoldenEye 007: Reloaded, Activision sets its target on re-kindling the spark that has been lost; but with GoldenEye Reloaded being a beefed up re-release of the version on Nintendo Wii, does it hit or miss on the Xbox 360?
For starters there is something that doesn't make sense to me. Maybe it's become I still have the image of the GoldenEye movie and the N64 version, but if I'm not mistaken didn't both the movie and the game showcase Pierce Brosnan as 007, but in GoldenEye 007: Reloaded, Daniel Craig is James Bond. On top of that Alec himself is now a different character than who we remember. There are some other familiars in the voice acting however there seems to be a tremendous deviation from the original source material. While there are some events that pay homage to the original, it just doesn't seem to feel like GoldenEye.
GoldenEye 007: Reloaded dishes up three gameplay modes which are:
1) Campaign mode - A relatively short campaign that alters from the original source material, but does provide an entertaining experience but unfortunately is not something that would keep someone coming back. Even though there are some changes to the campaign there is the inclusion of a new 007 Classic mode that gives you the original heads up display and read-outs that we all remember from the original.
2) Mi6 mode - A series of arcade missions that are separate from the campaign and all allow you and your teammate to tackle multiple objectives in one of four different gametypes:
* Elimination (take out so many enemies as quickly as possible)
* Stealth (avoid detection at all costs as you make your way through the level)
* Defense (protect and defend an objective against waves of assailants)
* Assault (lock and load and go in guns blazing against an enemy base)
The Mi6 missions are new to Goldeneye Reloaded and do offer a challenge as you progress trying to get certain rankings off of each mission type. The easiest way to explain this mode is Spec-Ops in CoD. It's almost an exact copy but with a James Bond feel to it.
3) Multiplayer - This is where the main crux of the game can be found. How many of us who remember the original GoldenEye, remember staying up for hours with tons of people waiting for their turn in multiplayer? Well with Goldeneye 007: Reloaded, the multiplayer surprisingly packs more content than other big title releases by sporting 14 new multiplayer maps (4 of them are brand new maps) and 13 different multiplayer game modes such as Bomb Defuse, Escalation, Data Miner, and more. With a wide variety of multiplayer game types and levels that range from the wide and expansive, to the close quarters, the multiplayer aspect of GoldenEye Reloaded will be where the majority of the players spend most of their time.
While GoldenEye Reloaded tries to inject more content than the Wii version, the one thing that does stand out is the graphics. Now on the Xbox 360 we get to see some major improvements in the graphics as the action seems to flow uninhibited, but to say that GoldenEye Reloaded pushes the Xbox 360's graphics isn't necessarily accurate. You can definitely notice a difference between the Wii and Xbox 360 versions in the terms of graphics, but if you're expecting some mammoth graphical powerhouse of a game, then I'm sorry to say that you're going to be disappointed. While a 60fps rate at 1080p resolution is a great improvement, you will progress through the game thinking that they could have done more and thats a shame when it comes to the fact that all GoldenEye fans have been anxiously awaiting a great successor to the original GoldenEye.
Even through there are some tremendous deviations from the original source material some of the more familiar aspects reside in the sound category. The voice acting is done surprisingly well and GoldenEye Reloaded does do a good job trying to blend both the original material with today's twist on the new James Bond. M still sounds frosty as ever and while the opening sequence is different than the movie, the opening score is still the same. In the James Bond movies/games there have always been an action packed score and thankfully this fact applies to GoldenEye Reloaded as well. This is the best quality of GoldenEye Reloaded and could quite possibly be one of the few saving graces of this title.
Ultimately while GoldenEye 007: Reloaded is loosely based off of the original source material, the big question is, should you part with $60 to pick up this game? If you are looking for a beefed up version of the Wii title, then without question as you will find a lot to enjoy with GoldenEye 007: Reloaded. However, if you are a purist then unfortunately you will not find this game filling that void. While this game is enjoyable, there just seems to be too much holding it back that could make this the true GoldenEye sequel that we all have been demanding for years.