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SummaryGoldenEdge: Rogue Edge...ent
The Good+ Fun run and gun combat...initially + Decent dual-wielding and power elements + Great graphics, sound and music + Surprisingly well-done multiplayer + Christopher Lee
The Bad- Clunky controls - Utterly repetitious and dull gameplay - Not very James Bond-ey - Story is rather unoriginal - 3edgy5me
The Bottom LineMy first review of 2017. Taking length from a long an busy January, now was a good time to at least review some game...I was torn with Sniper Elite and GoldenEye: Rogue Agent, but I ended up settling with the latter. Don't let the name fool you. GoldenEye: Rogue Agent is not similar to the James Bond movie or even the excellent FPS game it spawned. No, GoldenEye is very much a spinoff product, featuring a darker, edgier and more violent take on the James Bond world...in this case, it's the Timothy Dalton out of the James Bond games.
The main story deals with a MI6 agent that was discharged after going gung-ho during a training simulation. Goldfinger requests his presence, and gets himself sucked into a war between him and Dr. No, who wants to acquire a new weapon designed by Goldfinger's organization. The plot itself is rather unoriginal, and not very James Bond-y...it plays like a crummy action movie. The good news is that there's plenty of Bond villains to go around - from Xenia Onatopp, Oddjob, Francisco Scaramanga and Pussy Galore, so there's a lot of fan service present...and yes, the late and great Christopher Lee reprises his role as Scaramanga, and it's good. Oh, don't forget Judi Dench too!
Gameplay wise, it's...Serious Sam meets James Bond. Every level is the same: run and gun every single baddie possible. Take them hostage if you want to, toss them as shields, dual wield guns to mow down more baddies, or use your eye abilities to gain a tactical advantage. The abilities range from seeing through cover, hacking computers and weapons, a shield and a force field that sends enemies flying to their deaths. But to hell with abilities, you cry, I just wanna shoot things! And yes, that's where much of the gameplay is. There's a few dozen guns on offer that allow you to mow enemies down, from traditional rifles and submachine guns to magazine fed miniguns and a remote mine gun. Many of the one-handed weapons can be dual-wielded, meaning that you can go all John Woo on Dr. No's goons. Yet, this is the most repetitious and dull part of the entire game. I compared this game to Serious Sam, and while Serious Sam had a lot of charm with it's dumb gameplay, GoldenEye is different. At least Serious Sam had variety in contrast to GoldenEye. On the other hand, the multiplayer is real fun, and I remember playing it with some family and friends (and myself because LONELINESS). They put more detail in the multiplayer than anything else, and that's saying something. As for the technical stuff, the graphics, sound and music are pretty good. The game is rather detailed for 2004, the sounds brutal and violent and the music pumping and technical (not the Trent Reznor type, no no). Enemies moan and groan violently and gun effects have a lot of serious 'oomph'. Controls, however, are clunky and muddled, and lead to some nasty confusion.
Of course, the game is very flawed - my biggest problem being with the tone and story. GoldenEye takes itself dead seriously to the point of absolute hilarity. It's so edgy and dark that it ends up killing off a couple beloved Bond characters in rather dumb ways. The game's sounds and graphics contribute to the mood, and the bloody concept art makes me wonder if this game was actually attempting to target an M rating. It's attitude is rather out of place, especially for something in the James Bond world - even though it had it's fair share of dark storytelling with the Timothy Dalton and Daniel Craig side of movies. It's just that in GoldenEye's case, it's hilariously stupid and manages to give Shadow the Hedgehog a run for it's money in edginess. The story GoldenEye has is also rather weak, and possibly the weakest out of any James Bond game I ever seen.
Nevertheless, GoldenEye Rogue Agent is a special FPS...yeah, it's slightly buried deep into my heart but much of it's reception is spot on, citing the repetitiousness and sheer mediocrity of the game itself. Is it the worst James Bond game ever? Not really, though it isn't great. It's just a very middle of the road FPS that happens to have decent sound effects and multiplayer. If you're curious and want to pick the game up, just remember that the game is a testament to mediocrity and edginess, and nothing else.