The classic 1997 vidoegame GoldenEye 007 “has finally landed on Xbox and Nintendo Switch,” writes the Verge:
On Xbox, the remaster includes 4K resolution, smoother frame rates, and split-screen local multiplayer, similar to a 2008-era bound-for-Xbox 360 version that was canceled amid licensing and rights issues but leaked out in 2021.
Meanwhile CNET describes the Switch version:
You’ll need to be subscribed to Switch Online’s $50-a-year Expansion Pack tier to access GoldenEye and other N64 games. Online multiplayer is exclusive to the Switch release, the official 007 website noted, but this version is otherwise the same as the N64 original.
But “No high-def for them,” adds Esquire:
GoldenEye 007 marks a rare case in gaming history, where the title never left the gamer zeitgeist. It has been talked about, wished over, remade, and totally Frankensteined in the modding and emulation community….
Rare, a favorite game studio of mine — its crew is responsible for many of my childhood memories, making Banjo Kazzoie, Donkey Kong Country, Perfect Dark, Conker’s Bad Fur Day, and so many more — was always a Nintendo sweetheart. Until it was acquired back in 2002 by Microsoft. While Rare didn’t pump out as many massive hits after the acquisition, the studio is responsible for one of my favorite games, Sea of Thieves. But arguably no game from those folks made more of a splash than Goldeneye.
Based on the 1995 film “GoldenEye,” the game follows a block-like version of Pierce Brosnan’s 007 as he shoots his way through various locales, all while a synthy version of the signature Bond theme plays….
The return of “GoldenEye 007,” often referred to as one of the greatest video games of all time, has been years in the making. The Verge reported last year that rights issues blocked developers from releasing it on newer consoles, including Xbox, since at least 2008. Undeterred N64 fans even attempted to remake the game themselves on several occasions, though the original rights holders usually shut them down.
Modern players “may not realise how many of the features we now take for granted in shooters were inspired by this one game,” writes the Guardian. “The game that would introduce a lot of players to the concept of using an analogue stick to look around in a 3D game — it’s difficult to overstate how important that was.”
But it was the multiplayer mode that really counted. Four players, one screen, an array of locations and weapons, and all the characters from the single-player campaign…. We would usually play in Normal mode, but as the hours dragged on and the sunlight began to creep in behind the blinds, we’d switch to Slaps Only, in which players could only get kills by slapping each other to death….
It is interesting how fables around the game and its development have survived — and still intrigue. The fact that it is officially cheating to play as Oddjob in multiplayer mode; the brilliance of the pause music, which has been heavily memed on TikTok, and how it was written in just 20 minutes by Rare newcomer Grant Kirkhope. The fact that Nintendo legend and Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto was so concerned by the death in the game that he suggested a post-credit sequence where James Bond went to a hospital to meet all the enemy soldiers he “injured”. I think the sign of a truly great game — like any work of art — is how many legends become attached to its making.
It is lovely now, to see the game getting a release on Nintendo Switch and Xbox Game Pass.