007 Legends Review

I love James Bond. I love how he can be so suave while also kicking a lot of ass. He has a good history in video games. For every stinker like GoldenEye: Rogue Agent there are great games like GoldenEye 007 for Nintendo 64 or Agent Under Fire. 007 Legends has a cool concept behind it, even if it doesn't make any sense. I love the idea of being able to play through moments of James Bond's life. Too bad the game itself sucks so much.

Abominable game design permeates 007 Legends. Enemies are so damn stupid that they will just stand out in the open, basically begging to be killed, or just stare at walls like they're the most interesting thing in the world. A shotgun was the weapon of choice for me for the majority of the game because a single shot from one was enough to kill every enemy type I came across, and the death animations for a shotgun kill are hilarious. The enemies do some sort of backflip like Gene Hackman when Sharon Stone shot him in "The Quick and the Dead."

Experience points are earned for kills, which should make this game at least recommendable as a Call of Duty rip-off, but 007 Legends even manages to mess that up. Too many experience points are doled out over the course of the single-player campaign. I leveled up my health and my gadgets a few times, and I added a few attachments to my shotgun and pistol and I was done. The experience points feel like a tacked on and unnecessary addition that should have been relegated to the multiplayer.

The main problem with the game, aside from it being glitchy and ugly, is that it's boring. Every level is all about getting from point A to point B with a few really, really, really bad stealth segments tossed into the mix. There's nothing on the on-screen map to indicate that a certain part of a level requires stealth, so I hope anyone who plays this game has good memorization skills. Some quicktime events in "boss battles" do nothing except make the game even more boring. I don't mind quicktime events as long as they're well implemented and fun, but the ones in 007 Legends are shit. They made me miss the ones in Resident Evil 6, which is sad.

What breaks my heart the most about 007 Legends is that it does contain a few very good ideas, but they're all ruined thanks to the overabundance of bad ideas. Some of the level designs are cool (despite still being ugly), but the enemy AI goes out of its way to ruin that. Controlling 007's iconic cars should be fun, but I'll be damned if the game doesn't offer up some of the worst driving segments in recent memory, complete with that part from "Die Another Day" where Bond drives over ice. It's as bad as it sounds. The best moment in the game comes during the zero-G segment of the "Moonraker" mission, and I found myself thinking it was awesome…until I had to actually control Bond. At that point it became one of the most thankless tasks I've ever done.

People who complain about the multiplayer in the Call of Duty games should try out 007 Legends' offering and then shut the hell up. The deathmatch mode, Legends, is just as boring and glitchy as the rest of the game is. I played one match where an opposing player got stuck in the rafters of a warehouse and kept shooting all the other players, and neither me nor my opponents or teammates were able to hit him. I eventually wound up in the same warehouse, and THE SAME THING HAPPENED AGAIN. Ridiculous issues like that plague the multiplayer and suck all the enjoyment out of it. Also, the four-player split-screen multiplayer should have brought back memories of the fun of the N64's GoldenEye 007, but it's dull and has "novelty" written all over it.

I was really looking forward to this game and I feel so, so disappointed. I had the same feeling towards GoldenEye 007 for the Wii, but 007 Legends is actually a worse game than it. Eurocom needs to seriously rethink their approach to James Bond. They need to take this series back to what made it so fun in the first place. What the hell happened to the originality? 007 Legends isn't original, and it isn't fun. It's sickeningly bad.