With long-running rumors of a GoldenEye 007 re-release coming soon (pah, ‘soon’ my Aston!), we’ve been thinking again about Rare’s groundbreaking N64 shooter. Mention ‘James Bond’ and ‘games’ in the same sentence and gamers of any age will get a distant look in their (golden) eye if they remember crawling through vents to the gentlemen in Facility or shutting down security cameras with a PP7 in the Severnaya bunker. Good times.
However, there are many and varied games that bear the name of the world’s least secret agent, with winners like Everything or Nothing, the underrated World is Not Enough and many more appearing on Nintendo consoles. 007 may have been quiet for a while – in fact since 2012’s 007 Legends – but we’re counting 20 James Bond games released for Nintendo platforms over the years.
So while number 001 may be a foregone conclusion, we were very interested to hear how the other games in Bond’s previous rank. As with our other reader-ranked polls, we’ve asked you Nintendo Life readers to rate each James Bond title you’ve played from the list below.
Missed the ‘voting phase’? No you did not. Remember: The order below is updated in real time based on the corresponding user rating of each game in the Nintendo Life game database. Even if you’re reading this, it’s entirely possible to influence the ranking below! If you haven’t rated your favorites yet, click the ‘star’ below for the game you want to rate and assign a score right now.
So put that Walther on the shelf, grab a Martini and let’s take a look at the best (and worst) James Bond games on Nintendo systems…
Publisher: EA Games † Developer: JV games
We can’t lie, we forgot this game existed. The home console version of Nightfire already caught our attention at the time, and this GBA version from JV Games flew completely under our radar – to the point where we missed it in our first post asking for your reviews.
As a first-person shooter on a system that really struggled to handle first-person shooters, it looks like a technical triumph for the developer if nothing else. Feel free to let us know what we missed in the comments if you played this one!
Publisher: THQ † Developer: Gray matter
Based on a cartoon series of the same name, James Bond Jr. is a side-scrolling adventure title that suffered greatly from poor animation and a distinct lack of challenge. While it kept things relatively fresh with segments of gameplay not too different from R-Type, unfortunately this wasn’t enough to bolster its rather limited appeal. One for true hardcore fans, only.
Publisher: THQ † Developer: Eurocom software
The NES version of James Bond Jr. is arguably a more substantial experience than its SNES sibling, with fairly elaborate environments and more involved objectives to complete. The game is vague reminds me of Mega Man, but James Bond Jr. just doesn’t show quite the same flair.
Though admittedly it does show some pretty killer music.
Publisher: EA Games † Developer: EA Tiburon
What do you mean the name ‘GoldenEye’ was milked to death? How absurd.
Nevertheless, eight years after the N64 classic, we got another ‘GoldenEye’ game, and it’s safe to say that the DS version of this absolutely-no-crass cash-in-on-a-popular-name For real failed to hit the spot for longtime fans of the franchise. With poor enemy AI and a multiplayer mode lacking in all areas, GoldenEye: Rogue Agent was indeed a low point for the series.
Publisher: Activity † Developer: Vicarious Visions
Quantum of Solace for the DS, with a slightly weird top-down view, felt like a bootleg version of Metal Gear Solid – really bizarre stuff. Visually, the game is pretty bad, but it’s the gameplay that commits the worst sins, with an emphasis on slow, unwieldy combat that feels about as polished as a rusty fork.
So not very 007.
Publisher: electronic art † Developer: Griptonite games
From an isometric point of view, Everything or Nothing on GBA couldn’t get a hold of its home console counterpart, but it remained kind of yet cozy. There’s quite a range of environments to explore, the combat isn’t terrible (though it isn’t great), and who can forget the hilarious sprite images of Judy Dench and Willem Dafoe.
Distracting at times, but hardly worthy of the world’s greatest secret agent.
Publisher: Activity † Developer: n-Space
Despite some rather rudimentary visuals, the third-person shooting gameplay featured in Blood Stone on DS was not. That poor! Heck, we gave it an 8/10 in our review, calling it “surprisingly fun and well put together”, praising the weapons and the varied environments.
Double-O heaven? No, but double-O reasonable, at least.
Publisher: electronic art † Developer: 2N Productions
The Game Boy Color’s limited capabilities make The World Is Not Enough one of the most archaic of all the great Bond games. That said, the top-down gameplay is quite reminiscent of the original Metal Gear titles, with plenty of exploration and experimentation. We’d definitely go for the N64 version first, but Bond has run into much worse problems than this 8-bit adventure.
Publisher: Activity † Developer: Eurocom
007 Legends was billed as somewhat of a celebration of the franchise, with its campaign taking place across multiple iconic Bond eras, inserting Daniel Craig into non-Daniel Craig Bond screenplays. Despite the celebratory intent, developer Eurocom failed to create a worthwhile experience for 007 fans, with both the visuals and gameplay subpar. It’s clearly trying to capitalize on the success of franchises like Call of Duty, but struggles to create an identity of its own as a result.
Wii U had more than its share of gems, but this isn’t one of them.
Publisher: EA Games † Developer: EA Tiburon
GoldenEye: Rogue Agent for the GameCube isn’t a bad game by any means – in some ways it felt like a true evolution of the N64 classic. There are some exciting additions, like dual wielding, and it combines elements and characters from Goldfinger, The Man With The Golden Gun, and GoldenEye (it seems EA had gold in mind during the initial brainstorming sessions), but overall the fight maybe a little at bombastic for a Bond game.
EA’s blatantly misleading use of “GoldenEye” in the title also left a bad taste in our mouths.