Dateline : 19th November 2011


The old foe stands opposite Retrobear – the move tie in. However on this occasion he is more than pleasantly surprised as this one is really rather good. In fact not just rather good but stupendously good. So grab your silencer and your tuxedo as RetroBear goes all Bond on us….


You can tell the quality that went into this game and that is why its a gaming classic

There comes along once in a while a game which defines a system. Everyone will mention Manic Miner or Monty Mole when you talk about 8 bit home computers. They will say Mario for Nintendo and Sonic for Sega. Those games were all groundbreaking titles when they came out for one reason or another : Manic Miner for its platform originality, Monty Mole because of the insane difficulty, Mario for being the world’s most immense platformer and Sonic for its speed and big, bold graphics.


When Nintendo nabbed the rights to Goldeneye more than a few eyebrows were raised. Firstly, there hadn’t been a decent James Bond game, ever. Secondly, how would it be transferred to the console. Thirdly, would it be one of those godawful formulaic platform games that all film tie ins become. And Fourthly would it be any good ?


The first thing Nintendo did was give the game to Rare Software to develop, so a new pair of eyes would be behind the development. Next they ensured the likenesses of then-Bond Pierce Brosnan and co-stars from the film would be included. All very good so far. The game, when it came about, was such a refreshing change from anything that we had seen for Bond before. All the action was viewed from first person, with only Bond’s hand and gun visible on the screen. There was the odd driving section as well. They had tried to cram as much of the film into the game as possible, including the abseil down the dam at the beginning of the film.


Yes that is an N64 version of Sean Bean.


Whilst it all looked a bit grey to start with, the use of colours was excellent. The music was fantastic with a mix of the Bond theme as well as other original tracks. Even Sean Bean is in it, and Robbie Coltrane too. It was amazing, it blew gamers away because not only did it look and sound good, it played brilliantly as well. To top it all off there was a multiplayer game thrown in where you and 3 mates ran round a complex shooting each other. The most deaths you caused, the more chance you had of winning and thus deathmatch multiplayer was brought to the masses.


Its hard to work out which is the best part of Goldeneye – the main game or the multiplayer. I have spoken to people who have never played the main game, just gone shooting with their chums. I spent many long and frustrating hours round friends houses getting my ass kicked on this game. Its only when I got an N64 for myself in 2009 that I was able to play the main game and experience how much fun it actually is.


Goldeneye has dated, there is no doubt. Some of the FPS sections are quite ropey and there is a lot of slowdown when things get a bit busy. However there is no denying this is a killer app for the N64. You know a game is good when there had been rumours of an update for years and years since its release. The Wii and newly released PS3/360 versions tart things up a bit and include the online multiplayer, but to true fans of the game they aren’t quite as good.


Its always a bonus in a game if you can mow down a few communists along the way


Truly and simply, Goldeneye is a gaming classic you cannot be without. If you have an N64 then you should have this.


VERDICT : 00-Amazing. One of the best games of its generation and a must play for fans of FPS but also fans of gaming history.


NOTES : Cartridge only on Amazon will set you back around £5.00. On eBay you can get loose and complete versions from 99p – just don’t expect them to stay there as picking up this game for less than a fiver is pretty good going.


TBC : Bring out the bongos – Donkey Konga on the Nintendo Gamecube