Load up your silenced PP7s and fill the external mines: GoldenEye 007 is available now at Nintendo Switch Online and Xbox Game Pass subscription services. The beloved James Bond first-person shooter originally came to the N64 in 1997, and this is the game’s first re-release since then.
Playing GoldenEye 007 on Nintendo Switch
You must subscribe to Switch Online $50 a year expansion pack to access GoldenEye and other N64 games. Online multiplayer is exclusive to the Switch release, the official 007 website noted, but this version is otherwise the same as the N64 original.
The default control scheme will probably feel a little odd, but Reddit user Cuesport77 suggested changes that will bring it in line with modern shooters. I tested this and it works beautifully (although I chose to use the left analog stick to move around, the right to aim).
1. Go to System Settings > Controllers and Sensors > Change Button Assignments.
2. Create a control profile for GoldenEye.
3. Remap the left analog stick to act as the right analog.
4. Remap the right analog stick to act as the left analog.
5. Remap ZR button to act as ZL so you can shoot with ZR.
6. Remap ZL to act as L so you can aim manually with ZL.
7. (Optional) Remap L to act as B so you can activate things with L.
8. (Optional) Reassign R to act as A, allowing you to switch weapons with R.
(You must now navigate with the right analog stick and either A/B or L/R, depending on whether you followed steps 6 and 7.)
9. Launch GoldenEye and begin a mission, navigating menus with the right analog stick.
10. Take a break and switch to Check.
11. Switch from 1.1 Honey to 1.2 Solitaire.
12. Go over to Settingsand turn the Flip up/down setting to Portrait.
Playing GoldenEye 007 on Xbox
The Game Pass version can be played on Xbox One and Xbox Series X and S. A subscription costs $10 a monthbut people who own a digital copy of Rarely replay, the 30-game collection of classics released in 2015, can also access GoldenEye for free. It does not apply to physical copies of Rare Replay and the game is not available for purchase separately.
“The game now offers modern control options (including support for dual analog sticks) and a consistent refresh rate, running at a native 16:9 resolution up to 4K Ultra HD (where supported),” Craig Duncan, head of Microsoft-owned developer Rarely, said in a blog post marking the game’s release. “There’s also a full list of Xbox achievements to strive for, some of which are sure to test the mettle of skilled 00 Agents.”
So it offers more modern bells and whistles than the Switch release, but lacks online multiplayer (you still want local split-screen).
What’s the big deal about GoldenEye 007?
GoldenEye’s return was revealed in a Nintendo Direct live stream last September.
As a licensed tie-in to the 1995 film that introduced actor Pierce Brosnan as the legendary British secret agent, the game won critical acclaim for its fun single-player campaign and epic competitive split-screen multiplayer. It became the N64’s third best-selling title, with 8.09 million units sold – topped only by Super Mario 64 and Mario Kart 64, which sold 11.91 million and 9.87 million copies respectively.
Rare also developed the GoldenEye sequel Perfect Dark for the N64 in 2000, before Microsoft acquired the company in 2002.
Fans have been waiting for a remaster for Microsoft’s Xbox Series X and S to be revealed for several months, since achievements for it have been leaked several times. It was reportedly slated for release on the Xbox 360 in the late 2010s, and an apparently extended gameplay video surfaced in 2016. At the time, Xbox boss Phil Spencer said the game’s license rights complicated attempts to get it on the console. The versions that came to Switch and Xbox are not remasters, but scaled-up versions of the original game.
The original developer David Doak, whose face was known as Bond ally Dr. Doak in the gameexpressed both its joy and displeasure in a statement to CNET.
“It’s heartwarming and very special to see the outpouring of love and nostalgia for the game, it’s amazing to have been part of the team that created something that has touched so many people in a positive way,” he wrote. “Disappointing that none of the parties involved in this re-release have made any attempt to involve the original team in any way. Feels shabby and disingenuous.”
Doak regularly tweets about the game and engages with fans. Last September, he posted a picture of himself dressed as his in-game counterpart, joking that players shouldn’t “come crying” to him if they’re having trouble unlocking the infamous Invincibility cheat. It’s one of the game’s hardest challenges — you have to beat the facility level in under 2 minutes, 5 seconds to get it. He has spoken at length about the game’s development over the years, tweeting a 1997 photo of the original development team on Wednesday.
read more: GoldenEye at 20: We Raise a Martini to a Classic Game
This year marks the 70th anniversary of Bond’s first appearance, in author Ian Fleming’s novel Casino Royale. Last year it was The 60th anniversary of the Bond film series — with the latest film No time to die now available for streaming Amazon Prime Video — but the series is in a state of flux that fans are awaiting the announcement of Daniel Craig’s successor in the role. Hitman developer IO Interactive is too working on his own Bond game.
James Bond movies ranked, from Sean Connery to Daniel Craig
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