The original GoldenEye 007 on the Nintendo 64 is possibly remembered as one of the greatest shooters of all-time. Much like Halo did for the original Xbox, GoldenEye filled a large gap in the game library of its system. The lack of competition on the N64 allowed the James Bond shooter to stand out from the crowd and also gave players plenty of time to delve deep into the gameplay. It wasn’t long before GoldenEye 007 was loved throughout college dorms, military barracks and neighborhoods around the world. After many years of fans begging for a remake and overcoming obstacles like multiple license holders and bickering console manufacturers, we have a true remake. Thankfully this isn’t one of those rushed-out-the-door rehashes that is made purely to make a quick buck. Instead we have a well-made sequel that is so good on its own, it almost feels like the sequel to the original we all wanted. Whether you approach this one as a sequel or a remake, you’ll love it; and here’s why.
GoldenEye 007 on the Wii is a great shooter that doesn’t force you to rely on fond memories of the past for it to succeed. It’s a completely new title that brings enough new with it to create that addictive fun all over. We all know the story of international ladies-man James Bond. He’s had multiple incarnations with stars like Sean Connery and Roger Moore filling his shoes. Even the extremely talented Timothy Dalton carried the name James Bond for a short time. The latest version of Bond stars Daniel Craig and Activision has opted to sub in Craig for Brosnan. Many considered this near blasphemy when it was revealed, but it also shows that Activision wanted this game to be as original as it is a throwback to the original. No easy feat by any means, but this hybrid of original and remake rewards anyone willing to try it.
One of the best things this version of GoldenEye brings to the table is the mixture of gun-toting firefight action along with an emphasis on stealth by using your silenced pistol or whacking a baddie upside the head with a melee attack. This mixture of fast and slow helps keep things fresh, while extended the life of the game. No one wants to play a shooter where it’s non-stop shootouts. That gets old after a while and Activision realizes this. Everything isn’t perfect however as there will be occasions when the game’s AI will know you’re there despite every effort to be stealthy and silent. Thankfully this is a rarity and not something you’ll experience too often. So of the opportunity to pick off your enemies in silence presents itself, make sure to take. There’s always something more satisfying about a silent kill. (That sounds creepy.)
You must remember though that James Bond isn’t just a hired gun out to kill anything he sees. He’s a spy with a mission to uncover the truth… about something. In addition to killing those evil forces of the world, you also have to accomplish various tasks and objectives on each level. These objectives aren’t exactly going to keep you up at night racking your brain for ways to get them done, but much in the same way that combat is changed up, the objectives on each level keep things fresh. They are all relatively simple and range from taking pictures with your cell phone to hacking a particular device to continue or disarm something. Each one is pretty simple, but again are nice to have in the mix to break up the combat and deliver more of an experience than just travel from point A to point B and kill. Thanks to these little pitstops, it feels like more than just a shooter.
Combat in the new GoldenEye 007 is as smooth as ever. While you can use the Wii-mote for some point and shoot fare, the real shooter action (at least for fans of the original) comes when you use the classic controller or an old GameCube controller. Aiming is a breeze and surprisingly accurate. The original was a great shooter because of the pick-up-and-play feel provided by simple controls and accurate shots, but we were a little worried coming into the remake because of the Nintendo Wii’s track history. Lucky for us, Activision made sure to deliver a spot-on shooter with simple and precise controls that helps this shooter stand above the competition, while still coming off as very accessible. This probably sounds a little familiar to anyone who played the original.