Review by DandyQuackShot
"You Only Need One Shot. Make It Count."
Somewhere in videogame land a lone spy on Her Majesty's Secret Service with a View and License to Kill is on his way to scoring yet another successful game under the 007 agent number. Odd Jobly enough you cannot review a James Bond game without mentioning the precedent setting Goldeneye 007 for the Nintendo 64. In fact I would not have tried to mention it if it was not for the small yet surprising tribute that is placed into Quantum of Solace. Quantum of Solace takes you through the highlights of the movie and adds in the highlights of Casino Royale. This game is a shooter that packs in much more than the first person shooter experience and although you get a messy single player story that remains three steps ahead of the audience as the movies do you still get a great all around game with a better than average multiplayer.
*Cue blood flowing past a gun barrel and psychedelic theme song.
This must be the first Daniel Craig James Bond game to come out since Quantum of Solace actually incorporates both movies with a flashback to the highlights of Casino Royale. As 007, you will be in for a lot of missions that are slam full of shootouts, acrobatics, and exotic locations to move through. Quantum does a good summary job of both of the movies and features the likenesses of all of the characters from both. The game starts off where Quantum begins and then retraces its steps when Bond catches Camille Montes (played by Olga Kurylenko-the chick that was also Agent 47's woman companion in Hitman) up to speed on what happened in Casino Royale. So you get to do missions from Casino Royale like chase the through the Madagascar construction site and struggle to the Aston Martin to survive the poison attack. Seriously, who thought spiking Bond's drink was going to actually work? Most of the missions center on what actually happens during the movie and you can understand what is going on from both movies by playing through this game. Nothing is left out in the plot of this game that would leave you wondering what the movies are about. Even the last mission is the climax of Quantum of Solace with a few minor differences of course in the game play and number of enemies Bond has to deal with. The only two characters I think that are totally left out of the game are Felix Leiter and Rene Mathis, both of whom are Bond's friends in the movie. You can never go wrong with a game based off one Bond movie, and it definitely beats all to do a game based on two. The big theme from the movies carries over into Quantum of Solace with the big question being-is Bond out for revenge or still dedicated to his career?
License to Kill How Do I Apply For One of Those?
The single player takes you through various missions with some emphasis on trying to be sneaky. The harder the difficulty the more useful using cover and silenced weapons will help you out. The controls and game play range between a marriage between Call of Duty and Rainbow Six Vegas. You will do most of your moving around in first person mode with the ability to take cover behind doorways and boxes and shoot from behind cover. There are even special things like pressing and mashing buttons during fight sequences and trapeze over beams while avoiding falling off a high rise. Of course you are going to run into more bad guys and thugs than Bond would rather have run into in the movies so prepare to get bogged down on more than one occasion and sneaking shots off to take out legion after legion of foes. The lazy eye will also catch the flashing items like propane tanks and fire extinguishers to blow up or temporarily disable your enemies. Experienced gamers know what happens when you shoot these things and I do not think there is any reason to see these flashing items everywhere you go. What Quantum of Solace does lack, which kind of surprised me during the whole single player, is that there is little use of gadgets in the game. What you do mess around with are the security cameras and security panels with simple mechanisms, but I guess with the movies there was just no replacing Q.
Multiplayer features some excellent game types with a very large community. You can easily jump straight into a match in games like Bond Versus, Bond Evasion, Golden Gun, Team Conflict, and Territories-good stuff. Some of these game types require teamwork and tactics that come in very handy when you know how to use them. Online features small scale maps and matches to keep the lag away and you can set up your own private matches as well. A good surprise in multiplayer for Goldeneye 007 fans is an old favorite map that was revamped and renamed Complex. I bet you can guess which map this would be, but if you need a hint it has stairs that lead a to bathroom. Multiplayer is fun, fresh, and will keep you playing. Any critics of the multiplayer probably forgot to check their look sensitivity.
The Living Daylights
I only have one very minor criticism of the graphics. Just one tiny one. Everything else is slamming with spot on Bond themes and excellent likenesses of most all of the characters in the movies. There are very few cut scenes and the briefings between missions are not too special, but the graphics are great. My minor criticism is that you cannot shoot lights out. The graphical effects are amazing, but that was one of the exciting highlights of the legendary N64 game was to shoot out the lights without the rooms becoming any darker. There is no blood in this game so it keeps a PG-13 rating. I am not too sure about the voiceovers. Some of the dialogue comes straight out of the movies while in the game the dialogue does not actually sound like the original characters. The music is excellent, and I totally love the realism of the guns. The sights are set to aim down the barrel instead of using a crosshair. A crosshair is used when you are shooting from behind cover of course, but this is just a minor detail I found to be very awesome.
Tomorrow Never Dies
What makes Quantum of Solace so very worth it is that it is a game that has plenty of replay value and a multiplayer that is going to last. After completing the game, or certain parts, you can unlock bonus material where you walk around MI-6 and can enjoy a lot of the concept art and view the characters and weapons of the movies as if walking around in a kind of museum. The missions are fun in single player and the whole thing lasts a good while as long as you play on something harder than the easiest mode. Bond games were never meant to be played by amateurs. It also spans across both movies so there you go. The multiplayer has a very large and dedicated community so you will not have to worry about popping this game in next year and not being able to find a match. The multiplayer will definitely be around for a long time. The reason being is very simple. Quantum of Solace has an excellent upgrade system where getting kills and completing objectives during matches earn you credits. You can use these credits to purchase weapons and gadgets and the achievements for the online play are situated so that you will at least try out all of the game types as well as try to save up your credits.
As for the achievements, you get a great list of easy to get achievements. Most have to do with the single player mode such as completing levels and performing certain actions. Online involves winning a certain game type at least once along with purchasing all the upgrades and weapons as well as earning certain numbers of credits. The achievements are convenient and are great for those looking to boost their bragging rights and most of them are named after a quote or Bond movie title.
Final Recommendation 9/10
Quantum of Solace is another great James Bond game that you cannot go wrong with. Nothing sets this game back, as it is a solid move-based game that does an adequate job of telling the story of both Daniel Craig movies. Being as this is a Bond game lacking in only minor regards, this is definitely a good buy. The multiplayer community is going to be around for a good long time and you get just about everything you expect and more from such a game. What is great about this particular Bond series is that it looks to be continuous and so we can definitely expect even greater games to accompany the Daniel Craig Bond.
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 03/03/09
Game Release: Quantum of Solace (US, 11/04/08)
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