Review by quadruplesword
Golden. Simply golden.
Even 12 years after its release, GoldenEye 007 still stands tall as the best FPS experience ever. Most FPS games today can't even begin to rival this masterpiece in terms of solo play. In fact, most FPSes today don't hardly even have a solo mode. Most FPS games have shifted their balance of power from single-player to the online (Call of Duty 4) or have completely tossed the campaign out the window and turned their attention to the multi-player (Halo 3). What GoldenEye really does better than any other, is that it strikes a near-perfect balance between campaign replay value (which it has tons of) and multi-player fun (which you'll have plenty of). Read on for more!
GoldenEye had some great graphics for its time of release. It's just the kind of stuff you'd expect from the good old N64. Not the greatest ever, but pretty good for the time of release. The only reason it got a 9/10 instead of 10/10 is because of the occasional clipping issues. Still, they are rare.
Sound & Music: 10/10
The sounds and music in this game are just great. Every weapon has a different sound effect (unlike most games), so you always know what kind of weapon your adversaries are using. If you hear a soft "bang", you know your enemy is wielding a PP7. If you hear a loud buzz-saw like sound, you know your enemy is wielding the almighty RC-P90. The music in this game really just never gets old, it's not like most games where after a while I wanted to hear a different tune, or just switch the music off entirely. On top of that, the music always seems to suit the atmosphere of the mission you are playing. You'll be impressed at how well the back-ground music adds to the atmosphere of the level. Add to that the fact that every mission has a different tune to listen to, which keeps it from getting repetitive. No flaws here.
Game Play: 10/10
Ah, the heart and lungs of every game out there. GoldenEye's game play is so much fun it should be illegal (joke). There is a total of 18 single-player missions to play through, plus 2 bonus missions that can be unlocked by completing the game at higher difficulty levels (which is pretty challenging). Most of the missions will pose a good challenge, some are easy, some are just plain crazy hard (few of these). However, all of them are memorable in one way or another, and will almost always make you want to replay the level again at a higher skill level. For instance, Facility was infamous for having one of the hardest (and best) cheats in the game to obtain. Cradle was famous for being a very difficult level, having a truly epic sound track, and having one of the game's more rewarding cheats. Aztec has earned the reputation of being the hardest level in the entire game, especially on the highest skill level setting. What adds more to GoldenEye's already epic campaign, is that each level has a special cheat that can be unlocked by completing the level within a certain time limit. This just adds loads of replay value, as you'll probably spend months earning every last cheat there is to obtain. Another thing GoldenEye was famous for, was its revolutionary and extraordinary multi-player portion. Up to 4 players can compete on the same screen, in one of about a dozen arenas, and with different rules to set and weapon classes to choose from. You'll find yourself playing against your friends for hours on end, maybe even past midnight. Multi-player is a blast in this game, with a plethora of in-game appearances ("skins") to choose from (my favorite being the Siberian Special Forces), a wide range of weapon classes to pick from, and a variety of scenarios to play on. Did I mention for completing all levels on 00 agent mode, you will gain access to a special skill setting called 007, which allows you to edit various enemy stats? Not too many games allow you to do that. Definitely no flaws at all in this section.
Replay Value: 10/10
You'll probably find yourself playing this masterpiece for years to come, as the plethora of cheats, multi-player arenas, and skins will always keep you coming back for more. Definitely a perfect score in this area. Even once you have unlocked everything possible in GoldenEye, you'll still find yourself digging up the good old N64, to go a few rounds with some friends or to just experience the memories once more.
I know I already hit this section in the game play portion of the review, but I felt that this deserved its own section entirely. There is a total of about 12 arenas (6 of which must be unlocked), a plethora of skins to choose from, several scenarios to choose from, and a wide selection of weapon sets for your fragging pleasure :). Playing this game with a few friends can lead to endless hours of fun, as you will never get bored of the various options to choose from. Scenarios include the usual free-for-all death match and team games, as well as a few other interesting modes of play, such as license to kill (all guns kill with just one hit) and my personal favorite, the man with the golden gun. The arenas are a blast to play, and offer plenty of variety. Your map selection includes fun stages like Caves (great for ambushing), Library (my personal favorite), as well as 6 memorable areas from the campaign mode. No complaints here.
GoldenEye 007 is an FPS experience unrivaled by any other. Epic campaign, plenty of replay value, extraordinary multi-player etc. The game is perfect, the only thing it needs to be able to compete with modern FPS games is online multi-player. ^_^
Buy/rent: Buy! This game can be bought for about $10 nowadays, which is a GREAT deal considering this game's endless awesomeness. Buy it today, and you won't be disappointed!
Product Release: GoldenEye 007 (US, 08/25/97)
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