007: The World is
System: Nintendo 64
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Genre: First Person Shooter
Capabilities: Controller, Rumble, and Expansion Pak Compatible
Its been 3 and a half years since we last saw Bond on the N64. Rare left us with high expectations after delivering one of the most surprise hits of 1997. It decided not to do any more Bond games (except for a fairly good Game Boy Bond game in early 1998) so it can move on to its other projects, and so MGA Interactive then decided to make the next Bond Movie-to-Game translation, Tomorrow Never Dies, an exclusive Playstation title, but the game well, pretty much sucked. Then developer, Eurocom picked up rights for the game and started to develop the newest Bond game, The World is not Enough, and decided to make it a first person shooter just like Goldeneye did. Will it succeed with the same formula? Lets get onto the review and find out.
This game is translated right from the movie so you get the exact same plot, in case you dont remember it, Bonds out trying to save a couple of new chicks after former Soviets murdered an M-16 agent. The only man containing info about this info, is a friend of Q headquarters who accidentally purchased this classified info. You solve the clues and move along at the same pace of the movie. The game has excellent cinematics with actual voices of the real actors from the movie. Great experience.
The character models, are definitely a step up from the ones from Goldeneye, and about equal to the ones in Perfect Dark. The models look a lot more polished off and detailed, and look like they came right out of the movie. The guns all look great, and you can choose the amount of detail you want on them in multi player mode. All of them have there own little animations for reloading which look great. The thing that astonishes me the most here is how great the cinematics run. They look, and feel, ten times better then Perfect Darks, this is probably cause of the use of actual voices from the real actors from the movies. This also makes the single player missions run at a surprisingly realistic rate, and I actually think these games single player missions run at a far better rate than Perfect Darks and Goldeneyes. To make things look even better, this game is (and the only EA game) compatible with the Expansion Pak to make everything run at a better rate and polish off the graphics a little bit more.
Some things arent so good about the visuals in this game though. Like the environment textures look very, jaggy, but thats without the expansion pak, if you do have it installed in your N64, there still there, but a lot less distracting and noticeable. Opposite from the games single player missions, the games multi player mode seems to run a little bit on the slow side. I was just a tad disappointed that there wasnt a tad of a gore in the game, I know the games rated T and all, but Goldeneye was also T rated and there were stains of blood, but no gore found here whatsoever. Oh, and one other thing that wasnt a must, but sure did spice up Perfect Dark, was the actual body shot reactions in single player mode (like the computer shaking there hands after getting shot in the hand). But other than that, just about everything else seems fine with the games graphics.
The audio is another part of this game that was pulled off nicely. The music has that kind of Bond feel to it and is faded out just right so its easy on the ears, but the classic Bond theme isnt in here (or I didnt come across it yet). The sound effects are appropriate, like all the guns have there own little type of firing sound, plus you can easily tell the difference by the sound if the gun is a single shot type gun, or burst/auto firing weapon. The best part of the sound is the use of voice from the real actors from the movie, I dont know if these were pre-recorded at studios, are dubbed in from the movie itself, but they sound perfect, and really give you a sense of watching the movie after seeing those cinematics. Characters and guards also talk to you during the game when you walk up to them.
The games default controls is identical to Perfect Dark and Goldeneyes with a couple of substitutions. The top and bottom C buttons dont look up or down, they instead act as jumping and kneeling down. If you dont like the games default controls, you can pick from a set of preset controls, or customize your own. If youve played any other console first person shooter before on the N64, these controls should become second nature to you in no time.
The games missions play out just like in Rares shooters. Where youre suppose to complete the missions objectives in order to proceed. And just like in Goldeneye, you get complete mission briefings also. But the missions are much more interactive than in Rares games, just about every level has more objectives later to come as you progress so they dont seem like a breeze to pass by, resulting in a much more better experience for the gamer. Theres plenty of gadgets and guns here for your time being. Most of Bonds old gadgets are here like his watch laser, keypad decoder, X-ray scrambler, modems, and the list goes on, and on. Lots of guns are here, and you got a nice variety like single shot and burst fire guns, and even some great auto firing ones also. And theres plenty of explosives to monkey around in here too, including several types of grenades, which have features similar to the mines in Rares games.
The multi player experience is somewhat of a mixed bag, to me it seems like a mixed combination of the multi player modes of Perfect Dark & Duke Nukem 64. It borrows a page out of DNs book by allowing computer opponents play, but only replacing absent human gamers, like 3 CPUs and 1 human, or 2 CPUs and 2 humans. So only 4 people can play at max. A little bit disappointing after playing with loads of sims in Perfect Dark, but I adapted. Also you wont find all the customization here like you did in Perfect Dark. You can name characters, but cant save stat profiles, your own game settings, or even create weapon sets. In a Goldeneye like style, you can choose from a preset of certain weapons like explosives or close combat, and a type of arena to play in. There are lots of arenas to choose from a total of 14 in all. The game runs at slightly slower rate than Rares games, not in frame rate, but speed wise, I mean the characters seem to just walk around, and the CPU opponents are really tough, no matter what you set their handicap at, they are really hard to kill off. And for some odd reason, you always start off with a gun. I didnt like the feature at all, because here, I just killed the CPU, and then they regenerate right behind me, and kill me before I even turn around. Despite all these shortcomings, I somehow found myself unusually hooked to the multi player (funny how the Playstation version of The World is not Enough didnt even have a multi player mode), probably because I love these weapons so much.
Itll take you a good amount of time to beat the games 14 missions on 3 difficulties. So expect lots of hours of game play trying to accomplish that task. And your friends can go at it with you in the multi player mode, or you can go by yourself in the multi player mode with CPU players.
+: The best cinematics Ive ever seen on the N64, superb voice acting, single player missions are better than those in Rares games!
-: The multi player mode is really disappointing, the games environments have a jaggy feel, and no gore!
The Final Ratings Rundown
Game play: 8.4
Replay Value: 8.1
Rounded to fit GameFAQs Score: 9
I really didnt expect this game to be that good. The games single players missions really astonished me. And even though the multi player mode is disappointing, at least the effort was there to include it, and it can be enjoyable to a certain extent. Any Bond fan should get this game, or at least give this a rent. This is one of EAs last N64 games, and EA decides to go out of N64 publishing with their best non-sports game yet!