Xbox 360 Review: 007 Legends

October 30, 2012 by  

No Mr. Bond, I expect you to cry…

James Bond celebrates 50 years with Skyfall this year and although I have yet to see the film, I have heard great things and hope it lives up to my expectations when I go to the cinema. The Bond license has had mixed fortunes in the gaming universe with highs like GoldenEye to lows like Rogue Agent, Blood Stone and now sadly, 007 Legends.

The story starts with a scene from Skyfall where Bond is shot by accident from a sniper and he reminisces about his past adventures, each from a different era of Bond. There’s no connection between the 5 films, which I was led to believe there was…in the end, its poor story-telling. The 5 Bond films that have been selected as “Legends” are Goldfinger, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, A View To A Kill, Die Another Day and Moonraker. Now, apart from Goldfinger, could any Bond fan consider the others as Legends?

Legends takes its cue from the Call of Duty license, but fails to recreate the magic of the series. The shooting mechanic is flawed, the framerate is all over the place and the game is overly buggy. I found mission objectives vanishing off the screen, like during the first mission where you need to photograph the boxes of gold only for the last waypoint to disappear…so I was clueless as what box I hadn’t taken a picture off, I had to resort to reloading a checkpoint to make it work.

Bond will use gadgets through the game, but they are awkward to use and the mini-games you have to go through to hack devices is a real pain. There are also annoying stealth sections which become all the more frustrating as you fail the mission if you are spotted or if the enemy spots a body, it doesn’t help that you can’t move bodies either, Dishonored this is certainly not. Besides the short campaign, there are M16 ops that are even more frustrating and retread old ground, while multiplayer is a mess and there’s hardly anyone online at this point.

Visually, 007 Legends looks incredibly dated. The framerate stutters at random points, the animations are lacklustre and repetitive, while the weapons lack the punch they should have and don’t look that impressive. Voice-acting is a mixed bag and the person filling the role of Daniel Craig just isn’t convincing…

The Verdict

007 Legends feels severely rushed, which is more noticeable when you consider Skyfall is a downloadable mission in November. It’s sadly a poor man’s Call of Duty, it doesn’t feel like a Bond game at all and I honestly think Activision need to take a good look at the license and what to do with it or they might end up losing it, because Bond deserves so much more than this…

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