Following the massive success of GoldenEye, it only seemed obvious that Rare would continue with the James Bond license, but the developer opted to work on its own, original FPS property instead.
The license was snapped up by EA, who, with developer Black Ops Entertainment, made the perplexing decision to turn the next Bond game, Tomorrow Never Dies, into a single-player only PlayStation exclusive third person shooter.
After the poor reception of that title, EA gave the N64′s version of The World Is Not Enough to Eurocom, who would finally deliver a competent sequel to one of the N64′s most iconic games.
TWINE’s gameplay picks up right where GoldenEye leaves off. The title’s single player component is broken up into 14 missions, each of which can be conquered on three difficulty settings. Just like GoldenEye, higher difficulty means more than tougher enemies. You’ll be faced with additional mission objectives which lengthen play time, and make your health reserves all the more precious.
Of course, The World Is Not Enough is the story of Elektra King, stolen plutonium, and oil pipelines. The missions roughly follow the plot of the movie – and short cutscenes, with voice acting, help push things along.
Each level requires a bevy of skills to master. Just as much as it demands quick reflexes, TWINE tasks the player to explore twisting maps and figure out just what’s needed to complete each objective. The thrill of stealthy sneaking is back too – attempting to run and gun it through these missions will quickly get you killed, especially on higher difficulties. Mastery will have you feeling like 007 himself.
To get through it, you’ll need a full spread of Bond’s best gadgets. From safe cracker and keypad decrypter to night vision goggles and grappling hook – it’s all here.
TWINE’s multiplayer component doesn’t quite live up to the quality of level design and gleeful madness of GoldenEye, and it certainly can’t compete with the sheer volume of options available in Perfect Dark, but what’s provided is certainly more than respectable.
14 arenas can be unlocked, as well as a host of classic and modern Bond characters to play as – and against. Weapon choices range from mundane pistols to high powered automatics and explosives. There’s also a tremendous set of modes available, including everything from the standard Deathmatch and Capture the Flag, to King of the Hill, and Last Agent Standing.
Most importantly though, TWINE allows you to introduce bots to your multiplayer mayhem. Although you can only add as many as you lack in human players (in other words, 3, if you’re alone), that’s still 3 more than GoldenEye had. It’s a great addition to any FPS, and one that is all too often lacking, even in modern games. I love being able to practice on multiplayer levels when human opponents aren’t available.
Although it doesn’t quite live up to the revolutionary gameplay of GoldenEye or the amazing advancements found in Perfect Dark, The World Is Not Enough is yet another absolutely worthwhile N64 FPS, and a great James Bond game.
By the way, the N64 version of TWINE is certainly the one to get. The PS1 version was handled by Black Ops again, and lacks several single player levels, a difficulty level, and the all-important multiplayer component.
Eurocom’s success with TWINE led to the developer working on several more Bond games, including the 2010 re-imagining of GoldenEye. Unfortunately, the poor performance of 007 Legends would also be the company’s demise.
Who’s your favourite Bond? Mine’s Pierce Brosnan. Let me know in the comments section below. Don’t forget to rate and subscribe.
Check back next week for entry #38 on the Definitive 50 N64 games.