MGM put the breaks on the next Bond film largely because the company is short on funds. That’s pretty discouraging considering how Daniel Craig was shaping up to be a good Bond since his no BS mentality brought new life into the character. Casino Royale is one of my favorite James Bond films and Quantum of Solace had its moments despite being worse in comparison. Still it’s a shame that MGM is holding up production on the next film since good action flicks, let alone good big budget flicks, are in short supply these days.
Things don’t look that bad if you’re a gamer looking to get your Bond fix. Two projects featuring 007 (Goldeneye for the Wii and Blood Stone 007 for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC) are shaping up to be solid titles in the otherwise so-so James Bond game franchise even if you take OG Goldeneye into account. It remains to be seen if these titles will be hold the torch. But they have some promising features in the early going that are worth checking out.
Let’s kick things off with Goldeneye 007. First, you ought to know that this game isn’t a total remake of the classic N64 shooter. It’s more of a re-imagining of that game with modern day FPS sensibilities. The Wii version will include re-arranged campaign levels seen in the first game along with the hefty multiplayer mode accommodating up to fours player in split screen and eight players online. It’s easy to see that Activision is using huge doses of nostalgia to their advantage to get fans excited. Still it looks like the gameplay doesn’t look too reminiscent of the source material. Instead it looks like it’ll play more like Call of Duty with a James Bond skin. At any rate, I haven’t played it yet so I can’t truly judge. Here’s hoping they don’t stomp on my childhood memories of the original when it drops November 2nd for the Nintendos Wii and DS.
PS3, Xbox 360 and PC owners likely feel like they got jipped when they found out Goldeneye would be only on the Wii and DS. But Blood Stone 007 is looking like it’ll be a fun alternative for Wii-less gamers. The third person action game features an original story yet doesn’t appear to offer much in terms of groundbreaking gameplay innovations. Instead it’s influenced by a collection of good to great titles (like Splinter Cell Conviction, Uncharted, Batman Arkham Asylum etc.) and puts their hallmark features together in the James Bond universe. News on the game is trickling in as it doesn’t have an official street date. Still this may be one to keep an eye on since there’s a 16 player spies versus mercs online component in the works and fans of Everything or Nothing, the game Bizzarre Creations (Geometry Wars, PGR, Blur) admitted played a huge influence in developing Blood Stone, may see this as a spiritual sequel. Also the transitions between shootouts and driving sequences from the demo look impressive and hold some promise.
Bond 23 may be on the shelf longer than Detox. But these games may help fans weather the storm barring disaster. What’s more is Daniel Craig and Judi Dench (M in the films) will lend their voices and likenesses to the games to give them a more authentic feel. Moreover, Joss Stone will play as the bond girl for Blood Stone so you’ll have something to look at between the action packed scenes. All in all these games are shaping up to be enjoyable releases. They may not shape up to be as great as their great-granddaddy in Goldeneye but they should end up being fun in their own way.