Ian Fleming's suave, sexy and totally badass secret agent has been the source material for a number of video games over the last two decades. It started in 1983 with “James Bond 007” for the Atari 2600 (amongst others), and the latest entry is Activision's “GoldenEye 007” for Nintendo Wii. In this time, there's been over 23 video games made based on the adventures of the British spy. Some of them have been worthy of the “James Bond” name, others haven't.
Here are ten of the best “Bond” games ever released and why.
James Bond 007 (Saffire)
Platform: Game Boy
Release Date: 1997
“James Bond 007” for the Game Boy had the misfortune of being released the same year as the critically acclaimed “GoldenEye 007”, and predictably enough, it was largely overshadowed by its Nintendo 64-based brethren. However, unlike “GoldenEye 007”, which revolved largely around dual-wielding grenade launchers and killing everything in sight, “James Bond 007” was a more traditional “Bond” experience that required gamers to rely more on wits and gadgets than high-powered firearms in order to defeat evil and save the world.
One of the last Game Boy titles ever developed, “James Bond 007” played more like an old-school “Zelda” title than many of its predecessors. You would journey from one grid to the next, speaking with and helping people, and, naturally, using your combat prowess to defeat enemies ranging from generic thugs to iconic “Bond” villains like Odd Job and Jaws. On top of that, there were even gambling mini-games, including Baccarat, to keep gamers distracted when not unraveling mysteries or introducing enemies to Mr. Bond's fist.
James Bond: The Duel (Domark)
Platform: Sega Genesis
Release Date: 1993
I'll be perfectly honest – “James Bond: The Duel” won't impress anyone today. The gameplay is incredibly basic and the obnoxiously loud stomping noise Bond makes whenever he jumps will probably make you start gnashing your teeth after a few minutes. However, if for some reason or another “James Bond: The Duel” ended up in your video game collection during the early 90's, you probably have some fond memories of it.
As James Bond (who wears a tuxedo regardless of where the level takes place) you'll be doing everything Bond normally does in the movies. Bad guys are in need of being shot, bombs have to be diffused, damsels in distress are begging to be rescued, and Q even hooks you up with a jet pack, a staple of any “Bond” experience before the franchise was rebooted by Martin Campbell in 1997.
Again, “James Bond: The Duel” isn't an exceptionally good game by today's standards, but it's by no means as awful as some of the more recent ones, like “GoldenEye: Rogue Agent” or even “Tomorrow Never Dies.” Besides, this is one had Timothy Dalton on the cover. Any game that recognizes Dalton as Bond (and an incredibly underrated one at that) is alright in my book.
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