James Bond: Quantum of Solace Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | Wii | DS
James Bond: Quantum of Solace box art
System: Wii, X360, PS3, PS2, DS, PC Review Rating Legend
Dev: Beenox 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Activision 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Nov. 4, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-4 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Teen 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Back in the N64 days, an amazing Nintendo exclusive Bond-themed first-person shooter came out of nowhere and quickly became one of the console’s best-selling and most beloved titles. I am, of course, referring to GoldenEye, which, at that time, revolutionized the first-person shooter genre on home consoles. While that game hasn’t aged particularly well, it has been many years since its release and there still hasn’t been another Bond game that has managed to recapture this same magic. Unfortunately, even with the potential afforded by the Wii’s innovative control scheme, the use of the Call of Duty 4 engine, and the addition of online multiplayer, this statement remains true.

James Bond: Quantum of Solace screenshot

Quantum of Solace is a fairly odd title for this game. The name itself isn’t too strange, but when you look closely at the game’s levels, the name choice becomes very curious. In total, there are fifteen levels that make up this game, with around two thirds coming directly from Casino Royale. This would be like making a Batman game involving mostly events taken from Batman Begins with a couple from the new film thrown in and calling it The Dark Knight video game. Thankfully, this doesn’t really hurt the game in any way, as all the levels are actually woven together quite well, it just seems like a bit of a bait and switch for fans looking for a complete Quantum of Solace-based experience.

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Calling this game a first-person shooter is also somewhat misleading. While you can play most of the game in this fashion, you are continuously encouraged to make use of cover, which places you in a third-person perspective. Pressing A will make Bond stick to the closest sizeable obstacle that can stop bullets. From here, you can either blind fire at enemies or peak out and aim down your gun’s sight for a better shot. When in cover, your health regenerates more quickly and your shots also get a noticeable boost in accuracy, making this method of play very advantageous. Implementing third-person combat and a cover system into a first-person shooter is an interesting idea and works well at times, but it is also plagued with some problems.

James Bond: Quantum of Solace screenshot

The biggest issue this cover system suffers from comes from the controls. As I previously stated, pressing A will make you stick to cover, but it is also the same button used to sprint. There were countless times when I was trying to sprint to a better position during combat and I would just press up against a wall, table, or vehicle, leaving myself completely open to the gunfire I was trying to avoid by repositioning. Another problem stems from the fact that not everything you would expect to be able to use for cover will actually let you. One wall will allow Bond to seek refuge and gain a tactical advantage, while another, entirely similar wall can’t be utilized. This becomes increasingly frustrating when you are pinned down in a corner that just so happens to be one of these cover dead zones.

Once you get past, or at least adjust to, these issues, the gameplay is surprisingly solid. This is thanks mostly to the control sensitivity options provided. Thankfully, you are able to tweak just about every aspect of the Wii-mote’s sensitivity and, perhaps most importantly, the bounding box. This allows you to directly control how quickly your view will change when moving your crosshairs around the screen. The smaller the box, the quicker the screen will turn when you aim outside of it.

James Bond: Quantum of Solace screenshot

Screenshots / Images
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