Few movie-licensed games ever turn out well. One notable
exception is “Goldeneye,” based on the popular James
Bond flick, which ended up becoming one of the most memorable games
for the Nintendo 64. Nintendo subsequently lost the license to the
series and a string of mediocre titles using the Bond name were
released. With the release of “Everything or Nothing,”
EA finally found a way to make another game worthy of the 007
moniker by taking a different approach from the N64 classic.

Laura Wong
Shaken not stirred. (Courtesy of EA)

To create the feeling of a real cinematic adventure for James
Bond, “Everything or Nothing” boasts an all-star cast
for a videogame. As Pierce Brosnan, Judy Dench and John Cleese
reprise their theatrical roles. In addition, Mya, Heidi Klum and
Shannon Elizabeth are the requisite Bond babes and Willem Dafoe
plays the evil Russian antagonist. The story features the requisite
twists and turns as well as constant excuses for explosions and
sexual innuendo.

Bringing Bond out of the first-person was a risky choice and
could have been disastrous, but the third-person perspective
actually helps to create a more cinematic feel. The action system
features a targeting system and it relies heavily on the ability to
shoot objects from behind. Bond’s arsenal is full of guns
— from pistols to rifles, grenade launchers and machine guns
— and Q has provided plenty of gadgets.

Another new addition to the Bond franchise is the driving
component. EA went the extra mile, and taking the existing driving
engine of the “Need for Speed” series and applying its
game physics to “Everything or Nothing.” The vehicles
available include the Porsche Cayenne, Ducati motorcycle, the Aston
Martin Vanquish, a tank and even a van. Each ride comes equipped
with the appropriate weaponry and gadgets often seen in the 007
films.

“Everything or Nothing’s” greatest strength is
its theatrical feel. Besides the A-list talent, excellent espionage
gameplay and incredible driving, the game features “Bond
moments.” If the gamer completes a special objective —
like driving through a building instead of around it — a cut
scene or event will occur, indicating the “Bond
moment.”

While “Everything or Nothing” is not flawless,
especially with its average multiplayer and lack of true stealth
gameplay (a la “Splinter Cell”), it is the best game to
carry the Bond name since the seminal “Goldeneye.”

 

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

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