James Bond in video games
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The James Bond video game franchise is a series of predominantly shooter games and games of other genres (including role-playing and adventure games). Several games are based upon the James Bond film series and developed and published by a variety of companies, centering on Ian Fleming's fictional British MI6 agent, James Bond. The intellectual property is owned by Danjaq, LLC.
The game logo of James Bond (007)
Electronic Arts (1999–2006)
MGM Interactive (1999–2005)
|Platform(s)||Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Atari 8-bit, ColecoVision, Commodore 64, Sega SG-1000, Amstrad CPC, Apple II, MS-DOS, Macintosh, MSX, Oric 1, Oric Atmos, Amstrad PCW, BBC Micro, Amiga, Atari ST, DOS, Sega Master System, Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Genesis, Game Gear, Nintendo 64, Game Boy, PlayStation, Game Boy Color, PlayStation 2, GameCube, Xbox, Microsoft Windows, Game Boy Advance, OS X, Nintendo DS, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360, Wii U|
|First release||James Bond 007|
|Latest release||007 Legends|
|1982||Shaken but Not Stirred|
|1983||James Bond 007|
|1985||A View to a Kill|
|James Bond 007: A View to a Kill|
|1986||James Bond 007: Goldfinger|
|1987||The Living Daylights|
|1988||Live and Let Die|
|1989||007: Licence to Kill|
|1990||The Spy Who Loved Me|
|1991||James Bond Jr.|
|1993||James Bond 007: The Duel|
|1998||James Bond 007|
|1999||Tomorrow Never Dies|
|2000||The World Is Not Enough (N64)|
|The World Is Not Enough (PS)|
|2001||The World Is Not Enough (GBC)|
|James Bond 007: Agent Under Fire|
|2002||James Bond 007: Nightfire|
|2003||James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing|
|2004||GoldenEye: Rogue Agent|
|2005||James Bond 007: From Russia with Love|
|2008||007: Quantum of Solace|
|James Bond 007: Blood Stone|
Early era (1983–1994)Edit
Nintendo era (1995–1998)Edit
The popularity of the James Bond video game series did not rise quickly, however, until 1997's GoldenEye 007 by Rare for the Nintendo 64. GoldenEye 007 expanded on the plot of the film GoldenEye, and is a first-person shooter with a multiplayer mode. The game received very positive reviews and sold over eight million copies.
In 1998, Nintendo released James Bond 007 for the Game Boy developed by Saffire Corporation. The game features a story including characters from multiple James Bond films, such as Oddjob and Jaws. It also incorporates gambling minigames, such as Baccarat and Blackjack.
Electronic Arts era (1999–2005)Edit
The next Bond game, 1999's Tomorrow Never Dies, based on the film Tomorrow Never Dies, was the first released by Electronic Arts. Developed by Black Ops, it is a third-person shooter, released for PlayStation. The game was a financial success and received mixed reviews. The next titles, The World Is Not Enough (N64) and The World Is Not Enough (PS), are first-person shooters. However, publisher Electronic Arts, which owned the rights to publish video games based on the Bond franchise, chose different developers for different systems - Eurocom for the Nintendo 64 and Black Ops for the PlayStation, with different results, and the N64 version getting better reviews. Both versions were critical and commercial successes.
A Game Boy Color game developed by 2n Productions, also titled The World Is Not Enough, was released in 2001. The game is played from a top-down perspective, and contains seven levels. The game includes a password feature. AllGame praised the game for its diverse level designs and its soundtrack, but noted the game's difficulty.
In 2001, EA released Agent Under Fire for Xbox, PlayStation 2, and GameCube, featuring an original storyline and lacking the likeness of then Bond actor Pierce Brosnan. The game added the elements of "rail" shooting and driving segments to a first-person shooter. The game sold nearly 5 million copies, making it the second-most successful game in the series, while only receiving mixed reviews. There are no differences between the console versions.
In 2002, Nightfire was released, coinciding with the 40th anniversary of the film franchise and retaining Brosnan's likeness for the Bond character. It was developed by Eurocom for the PlayStation 2, GameCube, and Xbox consoles, with a PC port by Gearbox Software and a Mac port by Aspyr. The computer versions are substantially different from the console versions, featuring different missions, a modified story line, and online play. In 2003, the game also had a Game Boy Advance version by JV Games, which also differs from both the console versions and PC versions.
In 2004, EA released Everything or Nothing, developed by EA Redwood, for the PlayStation 2, GameCube and Xbox. Unlike the two previous installments, Everything or Nothing is a third-person shooter with driving missions, and it stars the voices and likenesses of Pierce Brosnan, Judi Dench, Willem Dafoe and John Cleese, among others. It was written by the scriptwriter of GoldenEye and Tomorrow Never Dies, screenwriter Bruce Feirstein, with a plot connected to the Roger Moore Bond film A View to a Kill. It was released to mostly positive reviews, the game also had a Game Boy Advance version by JV Games, which differs from the console versions.
Later that year, GoldenEye: Rogue Agent was released on the same platforms with the exception of the Game Boy Advance version. A first-person shooter loosely connected to the Bond franchise a spin-off, it stars a former MI6 spy known as "GoldenEye", who works for Auric Goldfinger against Dr. Julius No. The game was panned for its misleading title and poor storyline. The game was released on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube and Nintendo DS. EA listed 007 Racing and GoldenEye: Rogue Agent as spin-offs, out of their canonical order they have built.
2005 saw the release of From Russia with Love, based on the film From Russia with Love. It stars Sean Connery as James Bond, and the other characters had the same likeness of the original cast. The game is a third-person shooter in the same style as Everything or Nothing, with expansions in the story and certain details changed (such as trading SPECTRE for OCTOPUS, due to legal problems). The game received positive reviews, and was released on GameCube, Xbox, PS2 and PSP.
Electronic Arts announced in 2006 a game based on then-upcoming Casino Royale, but it ended up being cancelled, because it would not be ready by the film's release in November. This fact, which would lead MGM to lose millions in licensing fees, along with EA's commitment to move away from movie franchise games and focus more on internal intellectual properties, led the company to abandon the Bond franchise in May 2006.
Activision era (2006–2013)Edit
Shortly after Electronic Arts abandoned the license, in May 2006, Activision acquired non-exclusive rights to develop and publish James Bond games, which were to become exclusive in 2007. Activision's first game was a tie-in to Quantum of Solace. Quantum of Solace: The Game, which also included elements from Casino Royale, was released on 31 October 2008. it was released on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, Xbox 360, PC, Wii and DS. The game received mixed reviews, with the PlayStation 2 version receiving the best reviews.
At E3 2010, Nintendo revealed GoldenEye 007, a remake for the Wii of the 1997 game. Developed by Eurocom, using their Dead Space: Extraction game engine, the game updated the story of the movie, with a script by Bruce Feirstein and the current Bond actor Daniel Craig as 007, it received positive reviews. A month later, a leaked media release suggested that Activision had hired Bizarre Creations to work on Blood Stone, an original Bond story written by Feirstein. Both games were released on November 2010. Blood Stone was released for PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and DS, with mixed-to-positive reviews. In December 2010, a video and some screenshots from a new Bond game were leaked, identified as developed by Raven Software. The game was thought to be set for release in 2011, but Activision did not commented on any connection or status of that apparent title. In 2011 Activision ported GoldenEye 007 to PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles. Entitled GoldenEye 007: Reloaded, it presents an HD remastering of the original Nintendo Wii shooter from the previous year.
On 19 April 2012, Activision announced plans for a game titled "007 Legends" to coincide with the fiftieth anniversary of the James Bond film franchise. The game has been described as a "greatest hits compilation", retelling six film narratives with an overarching storyline to connect them together. Activision did not comment on which film stories would be included in the game, but announced that the gameplay mechanics would return to the first-person shooter after Blood Stone experimented with the third-person perspective suggesting that this had been the case due to the mixed reviews the game in question had received. On 21 May 2012, Activision released the first trailer for 007 Legends. Thereafter, the missions were revealed to be based upon Goldfinger, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Moonraker, Licence to Kill and Die Another Day. On 9 November 2012, Activision added the last mission to the game, released as a downloadable content, which was based on Skyfall. The game received negative reviews from several reviewers. Eurocom has since closed down.
On 4 January 2013, Activision and Steam's online stores removed online availability and pages for Quantum of Solace, Blood Stone, and 007 Legends without explanation or warning, only to confirm three days later that the James Bond game license was revoked. A month later, Activision themselves declared that they would be backing away from licensed games in a formal statement.
On 7 January 2014, president and co-founder of Telltale Games, Kevin Bruner has expressed an interest in making a future James Bond game if he were afforded the chance. He stated that "I'm a giant James Bond fan and I'm always frustrated by games that make him a mass murderer." When he was asked which license he would adapt next if money and licensing hurdles were not a factor. "He's a super-spy, and that's a different skillset. The films make him less of a mass murderer, and there's not much killing in the books – more spying and intrigue." Following the inquiry, a rumour sparked in June 2017 about a potential video game regarding the franchise being developed by Telltale, entitled 007 Solstice. However, the rumour has become further unlikely when Telltale filed for bankruptcy and closed down in November 2018.
On 21 January 2016, president of Curve Digital, Dominic Wheatley expressed his interest alongside the company in the series, saying "I'd be very happy to have a James Bond licence. We could do a cracking game around that," adding that these opportunities are overlooked by the bigger firms, since Electronic Arts and Activision have their own IPs and no longer want to "promote someone else's brand."
Shortly after James Bond 007 was released in 1983 by Parker Brothers, another video game was announced, titled Octopussy, based on the film of the same name. The game was planned for release on the Atari 2600 System, Mattel Intellivision, and compatible systems. Set for release in the summer of 1983, it was cancelled shortly after it was announced by Parker Brothers.
- GoldenEye 007
A revamped version of the Nintendo 64 game GoldenEye 007 by Rare was scheduled for release on Xbox Live Arcade on Xbox 360, 27 February 2008, but Microsoft (who acquired Rare and their intellectual properties in 2002) couldn't get the publishing rights from the intellectual property owners, Danjaq, LLC, resulting in the cancelation of the project. It was rumored that Nintendo (the publisher of the original title) or Activision (who had exclusive rights to publish video games based on the James Bond franchise at the time) may have been involved in the project's cancellation, but no sources confirm the rumor.
- Tomorrow Never Dies: The Mission Continues
The original VHS release of Tomorrow Never Dies featured a brief trailer with Desmond Llewelyn which highlighted a game that would "start where the film ends". Footage shows Bond skiing, scuba diving and driving in third person and on a first-person shooting mission. The game was to come out on PlayStation and PC in the fall of 1998 and was being made by MGM Interactive, not EA; EA was not involved in Bond until November of that year. Because MGM's motion picture division had licensed exclusive James Bond console rights to Nintendo (for GoldenEye 007 for the Nintendo 64), MGM had to buy some of their rights back from Nintendo in order to make the game.
A Tomorrow Never Dies game was released on 16 November 1999, distributed by EA, but with notable differences from the 1998 attempt. The game was a third-person shooter with no scuba diving level. The story follows the plot of the film, not the continuation that had been planned.
A level in the game sees Bond skiing down a mountain and killing a Japanese terrorist named Sotoshi Isagura (who had featured very briefly in the film), while on another stage Bond has a driving mission in Switzerland. These were not from the film and may have survived from the 'continuation' story.
- The World Is Not Enough
A game based on the 1999 film The World Is Not Enough film and using the Quake III Arena engine for the PC and PlayStation 2 was cancelled in favor for Agent Under Fire. Electronic Arts thought, by 2001, that too much time has passed since the release of the film, and that fans would be no longer interested in the product as talks of the succeeding film in the series, Die Another Day, were taking place.
- Casino Royale
A game was in development based on the film of the same name. Daniel Craig, in character as Bond, was going to give his voice and likeness to the video game. It was set to release on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 platforms. The game was 15% developed when the project was cancelled, as Electronic Arts would not finish it by the film's release in November 2006. Later, unfinished development screenshots from the Venice level were uncovered. Activision's debut in the series, Quantum of Solace, combines the storylines of Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace.
In January 2012, it was announced that a video game based on Skyfall would be released by Activision. Ultimately, a downloadable level based on Skyfall was released for Activision's 007 Legends, although a full game was not released.
- 007 Racing sequel
EA Games began conceptual work on the game in 2003, under the working title of Bond6. The game was originally meant to be released in 2005, set to star Pierce Brosnan as James Bond. A video game adaptation of From Russia with Love began development when Brosnan announced that he was stepping down from the role, which ended plans for Bond6. CGI work for the game was reused in television commercials for GoldenEye: Rogue Agent.
- Blood Stone sequel
In December 2010, some screenshots and a video were leaked online that depicted a new James Bond game, which shared similar gameplay to its predecessor, Blood Stone. Reportedly, the project had been in development by Raven Software, but was postponed six months prior to the leak, at which point the game was believed to be back in development.
Mobile and smartphone gamesEdit
Since 2002, games featuring the Bond character and the 007 trademark have been published and distributed on mobile phones. The first two are based on action sequences from Die Another Day, one of them is titled Hover Chase and the other is Ice Racer. Both were published by Vodafone.
In 2006, when the franchise was rebooted, Sony Online Entertainment released a side-scroll action game based on Casino Royale, which followed the storyline closely to that of the film's. In 2008, two games were developed and produced by the same firm to promote the release of Quantum of Solace, one of them was a tie-in based on the motion picture itself, featuring similar gameplay to its predecessor, and the other one was an arcade game called Top Agent. With the exception of the arcade game, the film tie-ins were developed by Glu Mobile.
In 2014, it was announced that Glu Mobile was assigned to work on another game for tablets and smartphones. A year after, it was revealed that the application is titled World of Espionage, a point-and-click game that retells the stories of pre-existing films, debuting an early access mode in July 2015 and releasing a full version of the game in November later that year. The game, after being universally panned for its uninspired content, was removed from the online mobile stores in December 2016 and Glu Mobile pulled the plug on the title.
There are two separate fan-made remakes based on GoldenEye 007:
- GoldenEye: Source is a multiplayer only total conversion mod using the Source engine, which began development in 2005 and was officially released in December 2010.
- GoldenEye 25 is based on the single-player mode, entering development in 2017 by a different team using the Unreal Engine 4 as its host, aimed for release on August 2022 on the 25th anniversary of the original video game.
Appearance in other mediaEdit
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- Thompson, Jon. "The World Is Not Enough (GBC) - Review". AllGame. Archived from the original on 7 December 2014. Retrieved 7 December 2014.
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- "Activision Acquires Bond Video Game License". Retrieved 3 May 2006.
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- Earwaker, Kiran (8 October 2010). "GoldenEye 007 - Hands On Preview". TVG Media Ltd. Archived from the original on 6 December 2010. Retrieved 10 November 2010.
- Williams, Owen (19 April 2012). "Activision Announces 007 Legends". Empire. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
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- Reilly, Luke (7 January 2014). "Telltale President Keen to Make a James Bond Game". IGN. Retrieved 7 January 2014.
- "T007 Solstice". Mi6-HQ.com. 4 June 2017. Retrieved 5 June 2017.
- Chalk, Andy (14 November 2018). "After some uncertainty, Telltale Games is closing for good". PC Gamer. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
- Dring, Christopher (21 January 2016). "Curve Digital: We could make a cracking James Bond tie-in game". MCV-UK.com. Retrieved 21 January 2016.
- 2016, MI6-HQ Copyright. "Octopussy (1983) Cancelled".
- "Goldeneye Steps Up To NU64" (JPEG). Nintendo Power. 78: 112. November 1995. Retrieved 3 June 2006.
- "GoldenEye 007". GT Anthology. gametrailers.com. 11 July 2009. Archived from the original on 26 June 2011. Retrieved 7 May 2011.
- "Games - Unreleased - GoldenEye". Planet Virtual Boy. Retrieved 8 January 2007.
- "Rare: XBLA GoldenEye 'locked in no man's land'". VideoGamer.com. Retrieved 20 September 2019.
- "Tomorrow Never Dies Video Game". YouTube. 21 December 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- "IGN: 007: Tomorrow Never Dies Screenshots, Wallpapers and Pics". Media.psx.ign.com. Archived from the original on 31 March 2012. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- "EA and MGM Bond - PSX News at IGN". Psx.ign.com. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- "Gaming Gossip". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 97. Ziff Davis. August 1997. p. 32.
- "The World Is Not Enough - PlayStation 2 Preview at IGN". Ps2.ign.com. 27 April 2001. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- "The World Is Not Enough on PC and PS2". MI6-HQ.com. 6 January 2007. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- MI6-HQ Copyright 2011. "James Bond 007 :: MI6 - The Home Of James Bond". Mi6-hq.com. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- MI6-HQ Copyright 2011 (26 May 2010). "EA's Lost 007 'Casino Royale' Videogame :: Gaming :: MI6 :: James Bond 007 Video Games". Mi6-hq.com. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- "James Bond 'Skyfall' Game In The Works". GameRant. 3 January 2012. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- "Skyfall mission in 007 Legends launches first for PS3". GameSpot. 16 October 2012. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- "Bond Races to PlayStation 2 Again - PS2 News at IGN". Ps2.ign.com. 11 December 2000. Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- 2016, MI6-HQ Copyright. "MI6 :: The Home of James Bond". MI6-HQ.COM.
- "First Look At Next 007 Game". MI6-HQ.com. 7 December 2010. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- "Glu to Create James Bond Game with EON Productions and MGM Interactive". MarketWatch. 8 April 2014.
- "The Next Bond Game by Glu Mobile". MI6-HQ.com. 2 June 2015.
- "James Bond: World of Espionage". MI6-HQ.com. 18 July 2015.
- "Game Over for Glu Mobile". MI6-HQ.com. 2 December 2016.
- "One GoldenEye Fan Wants To Recreate The Entire Game In Unreal". Kotaku.
- "Nightfire: Source Community". Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 27 October 2013.
- "'Nightfire' being remade in Source Engine". PCGMedia. 27 July 2013.
- "Forza Horizon 4 is getting James Bond DLC". Retrieved 19 September 2018.
- "Best of Bond Cars". Retrieved 19 September 2018.