James Bond 007 (1998 video game)
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|James Bond 007|
European cover art
James Bond 007 is a 1998 action-adventure game starring Ian Fleming's secret agent, James Bond. The game was developed by Saffire and published by Nintendo for the Game Boy. Released on February 9, 1998, the game features a story that includes characters from multiple James Bond films, such as Oddjob and Jaws.
The gameplay of James Bond 007 is presented from a top-down perspective. As James Bond, the player controls an arsenal of weapons and items. Bond must use items at the appropriate place and time to either sneak past impossible odds or to solve a mission. The player can save up to three games and/or delete them. The player can also perform fist and karate moves. The game is played across 11 levels, and also incorporates gambling minigames, such as Baccarat and Blackjack. The game is presented in black and white, as it was developed for the original Game Boy.
The game begins with Bond in a Chinese village, ruled by a female martial arts warlord called Zhong Mae. After Bond infiltrates her dojo, steals the plans given to her and defeats her, Bond escapes the ninja clan by speedboat and returns to London. M, head of MI6, tells Bond that the plans are for a secret weapons cache somewhere in an unknown part of the world. Bond then heads to Kurdistan to find 008, who is missing in action. Bond manages to rescue 008 after killing Iqbal, who rules the town. 008 instructs Bond to go to Marrakech to find one of Bond's old enemies, Oddjob, who is working for someone that is smuggling the weapons.
After a little bickering within the black market, betting at a casino, and meeting the Rat Man, Bond receives a sleeping dart gun which he uses on Oddjob's henchman. After stealing the henchman's room key, Bond is ambushed by Oddjob inside his hotel room and taken to the Sahara Desert. A traveler gives Bond a canteen, which Bond uses to sustain himself as he goes through the desert, which slowly begins to kill him. Bond makes it to a nearby airport, which has been instructed by M to take him to Tibet, where he must scale a mountain, defeat Sumos and get captured by Oddjob again.
While awaiting torture in the secret weapons base, Zhong Mae arrives and tells Bond that she has changed sides, stating that she was only trying to aid her village financially. With her help, Bond defeats Oddjob and interrogates him on who is behind the plot. Oddjob gives the name: General Golgov, a top general in Russia. Oddjob tells Bond to return to Kurdistan where he finds Golgov's two associates, Saddam and Khatar, while Zhong Mae tells Bond to find her friend, Mustafa. After Bond defeats Khatar and Saddam, Mustafa thanks him for stopping the war that destroyed Iqbal's village and then gives him a mirror. With aid from a guide, Bond makes it to the edge of Golgov's base which Bond manages to infiltrate. Inside, Bond kills Jaws and then begins to unravel the general's true intentions: a nuclear holocaust with the general emerging as the ruler of the world. Bond uses a bazooka to destroy the General in his robot and then aids Zhong Mae in shutting the down the base. Bond and Mae then take a boat out to sea where a British sub rescues them and congratulates Bond.
Monica Wilbur of IGN wrote, "The only thing that Bond truly lacks is decent navigational system. The so-called 'satellite link' that is supposed to pinpoint 007's location is a poor excuse for a map. It doesn't show any of the places Bond has or has not visited and in fact, shows nothing but a blinking dot on a blank grid. The blinking dot is supposed to represent Bond, but big deal. As many of the levels Bond explores turn out to be repetitively rendered mazes, the omission of a suitable mapping system seems a huge oversight." Wilbur noted the fact that once a level is completed, "the only way to return to a previously played area is to start over from the beginning. Of course, having played this game a few times, I've realized that there is very little incentive for a player to want to return to a completed level. [...] The game's graphics vary from level to level. [...] The game's characters are creatively rendered and pleasing to look at in all their diminutive glory."
Wilbur praised the game's inclusion of the James Bond Theme, as well as the score used for the game's casino area, but wrote, "Other songs are nice while they last, but don't have too much of an impact. Too bad the sound effects don't live up to larger-than-life quality of the Bond myth. Most of the weapon effects are puny and mechanical – a bullet should 'boom,' not 'blip.' And as for the game's human contingent, Bond and his supporting cast utter nary a sniff. This silence tends to render the game's characters a little shallow in the 'personality' category. It would have been really swell to hear the enemies groan in pain as they bite the dust, or to have Bond make refined grunting noises with each barrage of bullets he bravely bears."
Wilbur concluded that, "Bond covers lots of ground in this game, but somehow it doesn't seem like enough. Compared with other RPGs, this one could have stood to be at least three or four levels longer. The game does, however, offer a few hidden items and features that may be missed the first time around. Then again, these items and features alter the gameplay only slightly and do not present any substantially different route of adventure for Bond to embark upon. Should you put the game away for a few months, you might take some satisfaction in playing it again if you've forgotten exactly how to beat it. Also, being able to play the card games outside of the RPG context is a nice touch. But for the most part, the game does not contain the depth and breadth that one normally expects from an RPG."
- "James Bond 007 - Overview". AllGame. Archived from the original on 2014-11-14. Retrieved 2016-05-26.
- "James Bond 007". GameRankings. Retrieved 2012-08-20.
- "James Bond 007". Nintendo.com. Archived from the original on 1998-02-05. Retrieved 2016-06-17.
- Wilbur, Monica (1999-06-23). "James Bond 007". IGN. Retrieved 2016-05-14.