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Review

James Bond 007: Quantum of Solace (Wii) Review

I still have the fondest memories to this very day of playing Goldeneye 64 on my beloved 64. With a few mates around or the younger siblings, I could spend hours playing the multiplayer mode. Backed up by a robust and well designed single player mode, Goldeneye was, and still is, one the finest console based FPS even conceived. That was a long time ago, and since then, quite a few new James Bond films have been made which also means quite a few James Bond video games have been made. No James Bond game has really come close to emulating the brilliance of Goldeneye, but does Quantum of Solace (QoS) finally knock Goldeneye of the helm as best Bond game? Well, no. In all honestly, QoS falls well short of even being a challenger to the quality that is Goldeneye. In fact, Goldeneye is a far superior game on just about every level despite being about 10 years older. Read on to find out why QoS falls so short.

I was quite disappointing after playing QOS. I havent played a good FPS in quite some time and I was hoping this game would satisfy my hunger for a quality FPS. How wrong I was. Due to my being disheartened after playing this game, I am going to provide to you a detailed list of what is wrong with this game. Should you consider buying this game, I implore you to read this first, as it just might save you wasting your hard earned cash.

The first thing that is wrong with QoS is the visuals. Now normally I can be forgiving of less than impressive graphics, but QoS is just terrible. A couple of generations ago it would have been brilliant, but by todays standards, it fails miserably. The animations are crude, the character models are block, the landscapes are bland, and the textures arent anything to ride home about either. However, the worst culprit here is the frame rate. QoS suffers from an unbearable frame rate issues resulting in slow down resembling that of trying to play a modern computer game on a 15 year old computer. The slow down is so bad that it actually interferes with the gameplay, and in some instances, slows down to a point that it is unplayable. I will be fair and say that it doesnt happen all the time, but the reality is, it should not happen at all.

Another problem with QoS is a lack of originality and a poorly conceived story. Now I went and saw QoS just a few days before I began playing the game. Despite this, the games story line doesnt flow nor does it resemble the movie as much as it should. New characters are just introduced in the game without any back story of explanation as to why they are there. Regardless of whether you have seen the movie, you probably wont make much sense of the games plot. On top of this, the levels in the game are generally bland and very much a case of been there, done that. The environments are all very familiar and lack any sense of originality. This lack of originality is also evidence in other elements, such as the games weapons. All the guns look bland and uninspired, and theres a distinct lack of cool gadgets such as the remote mines that were in Goldeneye.

Further problems are evident with multiplayer. I will give the game credit for providing online multiplayer, but the local multiplayer is poor. Problems with slow down and a lack of originality are again the main culprits. Theres also no option for having computer controlled opponents. If they can do this 10 years ago, why the hell is this not possible now? Well, it is possible; its a lack of effort and thought that leads to such poor design choices. Perhaps local multiplayer options are being neglected in favour of paying more attention to online. There is merit to this argument, thought the online multiplayer in QoS is nothing to ride home about.

Enemy AI is another of the games drawbacks. In some cases, the enemies will just stand there allowing you to walk up to them and take them out with ease. There is a real lack of intelligence in the enemy making the game rather easy to complete. They also have this really stupid sliding animation that is supposed to be some sort evasive move. The problem is, the silly sliding sequence takes a few seconds allowing you to quickly run up to them and shoot them whilst they are sliding around like morons. Another gripe I had is the dull animations that occur when you defeat an enemy. A lot of effort went into this aspect in Goldeneye, and I recall that there were a number of cool dying sequences, as well as localised reactions (e.g., getting shot in leg). Not the case here.

The game also suffers from bland sound. The typical James Bond tunes are there, but the remaining sound track is boring and fails to add to the game. Sound effects also leave a lot to be desired. Another thing I would have liked is some driving levels. The opening sequence in the QOS movie involves a great car chase seen along some winding mountain roads in Italy. The driving elements in some previous Bond games were well done and would have been welcomed here, but alas, it was not the case.

One thing that is generally good in QoS is the controls. The Wiimote and Nunchuk combination work well, and although it is not quite as intuitive nor as well conceived as the control scheme in Metroid Prime, the controls here are solid and easy to learn. Your pointer does drag from time to time due to the slow down, but aside from this, the controls are one of the few good points in QOS.

At the end of the day, I cannot really recommend QoS as it fails to deliver on a number of levels. To be frank, when a game that is 10 years old looks, sounds, and plays better than a modern game based on the same franchise, you know there are problems. If you are really after a Bond fix, I suggest you whip out you 64 and give Goldeneye another play through. It will leave you much more satisfied than Quantm of Solace.

Graphics 5.0

Gameplay 4.0

Sound 4.0

Tilt 5.0

Value 5.0

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About The Author
Toby Mizzi
First gaming experiences were with my older brother playing Sonic the Hedgehog on the Sega Master System and Sega Mega Drive. I was about 12 years old when the PS1 and the N64 were just about to be released, and I wanted to get a PS1 based on my experience playing some demo PS1 games at a Video Games Heaven store. On the day we came to lay buy the PS1, they had demo N64 consoles set up in the middle of the shopping centre and we naturally took some time to sample the goods. Dad, who barely played games, decided that the N64 would be a better console and I have never looked back since then. Don't get the time to play games as much as I did when I was younger, though I still enjoy nothing more than sitting back on the couch and being absorbed into a totally different world.

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