007: Quantum of Solace (Xbox 360) Review
Picture this… Call of duty 4 breeding with Rainbow 6 Vegas 2. Then throw the two most recent Bond films into the mix and you pretty much have 007: Quantum of Solace.
This game was developed by Treyarch, who have brought us such good games as Call of Duty 3 & World At War, and if you can’t tell… that was sarcasm.
This game showed promise at E3 when the teaser trailer was shown, but when the time came this game was swamped in the desperate struggle of games trying to quickly pinch Game Of The Year. Maybe… just maybe, this game might have been better received if it wasn’t in the shadow of the titans of Fallout 3, Left 4 Dead, Gears of War 2, and many others.
The game takes the story of Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace with tweaks to make it work well as a game. I’m not sure if playing the game is a replacement to seeing the movie, but if you’ve seen the movie then the direction the game is going in will not surprise you one bit.
The game is built on the CoD4 engine with an added cover system, alternate weapon fire (being able to switch from single shot to 3-burst to full auto, with compatible guns) and the ability to take silencers on and off (all of things that R6V2 has done).
The single player campaign is very short even with its fifteen levels (one of which consists of being poisoned and staggering to your car), ducking and diving between Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace, and would probably take 3-5 hours on first play through. In my first play through I played on Field operative (2nd easiest) and it seemed too easy. On a second play through I did it on 007 (hardest) which seemed like it was how the game was meant to be played.
Throughout the campaign there are ‘Cell Phones’ for you to collect each with a snippet of information. There are typically 1 – 6 per level and there is a 30g achievement for finding thirty and a 40g achievement for finding all of them.
In addition to ‘Cell Phones’ there are ‘Power Weapons’. There is one ‘Power Weapon’ per level (some don’t have one). These weapons can range from a Super Magnum to the D.A.D. rocket system, with all points in-between being just as destructive.
There are a few QTE’s (Quick Time Events) which work rather well:
~ Hacking locks – D-Pad when green is shown in direction.
~ Takedowns – Only takes one button press (X,Y,A,B), after the initial LS Click. Then cuts to an animation of Bond taking this enemy down (There are many animations so it will take while for the same one to come around again).
~ ‘Bosses’ – Now I hate to call them bosses because that stirs up images of Bowser, etc… but at the end of some levels there will be a Fist-Fight with a main character which involves the pressing or ‘mashing’ of the colored buttons.
Also to add even more depth Treyarch added the clichéd Spotlight or Camera movements making you time your next time to cover. Balancing along thin poles also plays its part with a bar and siding ball on the bottom of your screen which needs to stay in the middle or Mr.Bond meets with the iconic blood trickling down the screen.
First of all, I was too young to enjoy the value of the original GoldenEye, yet I have extremely fond memories of Agent Under Fire and Nightfire local multiplayer for the PlayStation 2.
The multiplayer consists of 9 playlists: Although strictly speaking there are 7 unique playlists as two of them are a mixture of some of the others.
Now the online playlists that are different from the normal Deathmatch, Free for All, Territory Control, etc are the Bond Themed modes: Bond Versus, Bond Evasion and Golden Gun.
In Bond Versus you see one player as Bond (Daniel Craig) and everyone else as ‘The Organization’. Bond has two lives, everyone else has one. Bond’s objective is to defuse two of the three bombs or eliminate the Organization. Bond is rotated at random after the round. And in Bond Evasion there are two teams MI6 and the organization. MI6’s task is to escort Bond to the extraction point, which is at the Organization’s spawn. The Organization has to kill bond to stop him reaching the extraction point, or run down the clock so he does not do so.
Teams are swapped halfway through and Bond is randomly rotated.
Golden Gun is a Free for All Mode in which there is a Golden Magnum with an ARO Scope which spawns in the middle of the map. The player with the gun can be seen my all on the mini-map, but to make things fair the bullets from the gun explode on impact. Although this may seem unfair it is surprisingly hard to fend of 7 other players as they hunt you down in order to receive the gun. The gun is so sought after because getting a kill with the gun or killing the possessor of the gun with bank you 5 points as opposed to the normal 1.
Depending on your game type you will earn ‘credits’ (form of currency) per kill. This relates to what you can buy. You can spend your hard earned credits on a variety of things to give you an edge over the opposition. There are weapons ranging from Machine Guns to a Nail Gun…(Yes you can buy a Nail Gun). Gadgets also appear in the ‘shop’ although they are just a Jamesbondification of ‘Perks’ from Call of Duty 4 & World at War which is disappointing. The gadgets can do things such as allow you to reload faster, have more health, see proximity mines on the map, etc…
A range of grenades are also available, but realistically you’ll only use Proximity Mines once you get a grip of things.
There are four attachments: Holo Sight, ARO Scope, Scope and Silencer. Although this may not seem like much, but they can be mixed and matched on specific guns (that allow the right combination).
To buy everything costs around 80,000 Credits, and handily there are achievements for buying everything AND obtaining 100,000 Credits (not at once), so really many of the Multiplayer achievements revolve round the quest for 100k Credits.
I only really have two problems with the multiplayer. The first is the fact that Shotguns are EXTREMELY overpowered, although after you’ve played the game for awhile you will soon be able to combat this. The second is that there is something wrong with the sounds of your own footsteps, although I cannot put my finger on what exactly is wrong. It sounds like someone is behind you when you walk; I am not using surround sound however, so that might be the problem… instead I am using Turtle Beach Ear-Force X1s (which are pretty awesome nonetheless) .
Overall this game is worth it at the average price (which seems to be around £17 -£25) or as a rental from LOVEFiLM, Blockbuster or whatever your preferred medium of renting is. It will have you playing the single player for 8 hours or so (That’s one play though on Field Operative, One on 007 and another on the lowest setting to retrieve all the ‘Cell Phones’ and ‘Power Weapons’)
When you strip the game down it is clear that it is packed full of gunfire with stealth thrown in, and at times it may seem as though you’re just following the compass and killing the swarms of henchmen that want you dead. Then dodging the lights/cameras, only to be spotted (if it finds you) to then be swarmed again by baddies.
It took me half a month to complete this game (1000g) and I had tremendous amounts of fun doing so, shame it’ll be gathering dust on my shelf, or end up being traded-in to CEX or GAME.
This game looked as if it had the potential to break the curse of giving a game a movie license which has plagued games such as King Kong, Enter the Matrix & Jumper. This is due to the game merely being a marketing tool and most games with a film associated with them arebad due to rushed development. This game was close however to breaking the ‘curse’, but not quite there.
This review was written by Matttbh (Penguin_Cube) for BrutalGamer.com and DooYoo.co.uk and may only be used with permission.