The SeedsVideo

What’s A Few Bullets Between Friends?

A crude but effective sense of stealth and endlessly fun multiplayer made GoldenEye better than it should have been.

By John Teti • October 16, 2012

In case you missed it: Previous episodes of The Seeds looked back at the heady freedom of Grand Theft Auto III and the inner space of Metroid.

Nobody expected GoldenEye 007 to be any good. There had never been a decent James Bond game, and games adapted from movies rarely impress anyway. Plus, the studio’s development team was made up mostly of people who had never worked in video games before. And yet here we are: It’s one of the few Nintendo 64 games—made by somebody other than Nintendo—that managed to leave a lasting mark.

For me and a few other folks interviewed for this series, GoldenEye is memorable as the game that made the experience of stealth feel real and exciting for the first time. It paved the way for the more refined worlds of the Thief series and, as Scott Jones mentions in the video, Syphon Filter. But a whole lot of GoldenEye players never bothered with the solo mode—it was all multiplayer. And to that end, as Anthony John Agnello points out, GoldenEye changed the industry by taking the rough edges of the PC shooter experience and sanding them down for console players. Letting players shoot at each other’s head has been the No. 1 focus of the mainstream studio system ever since.

By the way, I replayed GoldenEye for this series, and I have to agree with my friend Mr. Jones that it really does not hold up. (In fairness, we did have a lot of fun playing the four-person multiplayer again, so there’s that.) Maybe I’m spoiled, though. Would you still sit down for a game of GoldenEye? Looking forward to hearing your thoughts, theories, and reflections in the comments.

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  • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

    I could watch these things for any game ever made. Maybe my favorite feature on here (aside from keyboard geniuses and the friday “what are you playing?” threads). 

    MORE MORE. GIMME GIMME.

    • Dunwatt

       Oh, God, Perfect Dark.  If I can’t get a handle on GoldenEye anymore, Perfect Dark would probably put me in my grave.  Or to bed early.  Probably the latter.

    • MalleableMalcontent

      I replayed Perfect Dark this summer on the XBox version, which smooths over a lot of the quirks of the original release (especially the frame rate and resolution). The controls aren’t as precise on the XBox, but it’s the best way to experience the game today. If only GoldenEye could get an update like that instead of an outright remake.

      • AHyperkineticLagomorph

        I might have to disagree. I would prefer a total remake*. If they could remake either game in modern hardware, I would be a happy man. Goldeneye and Perfect Dark had such great designs, but have aged so poorly you really can’t just play them anymore. Some games from the same era, like the original Deus Ex, look about the same: complete ass. However, the gameplay there remains hasn’t aged the same way.

        *I’m aware there’s a “modern” Goldeneye, but it’s neither the same gameplay or even the same levels, despite being based on the same goddamn movie.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Was the modern Goldeneye okay though?

          I’m wayyyyyy too young for the N64, so I’m just curious; is there still competitive split-screen multiplayer and is it up to snuff?

        • http://www.facebook.com/andy.tuttle.79 Andy Tuttle

           I enjoyed the Goldeneye remake when I got it for the Wii. It does allow four player split screen, I think, but I only played it online. I can’t really do split screen anymore unless its with my brothers, because then it just feel like I’m a kid again.

    • GaryX

      Screen peeking isn’t cheating, but it does get a little annoying. 

      One of the only reasons I’d like 3D TV’s to take off is the chance that they bring local multiplayer back. Some of them have modes where you where glasses and, instead of seeing it in 3D, you screen share with someone else but both see only your own screen.

      • NarcolepticPanda

        Yeah, I’ve heard of that. That technology would be awesome for racing games. Being able to see your car on the full screen, but being right next to who you are racing against. I think the gaming industry is pretty much slowly, tortuously killing off non-online multiplayer for good, but, hey, hope!

        • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

          Pretty soon, local multiplayer will be relegated to the fighting and artillery genres. It’s a damn shame, because some of my best gaming experiences have involved co-op-ing Perfect Dark and Brute Force.

        • El Zilcho

          Oh man, Brute Force was so much fun. I feel like Borderlands could hold the same appeal, with the local multiplayer co-op, but I don’t think it lets you play more than two people on the same screen, if there’s any local multiplayer at all.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Borderlands has 2 player split-screen. Apparently it’s fun, but there’s no way the game fairly divies up loot. That’s more of a problem online, but if your friends are jerks, you’re kinda screwed.

        • ApesMa

          “I think the gaming industry is pretty much slowly, tortuously killing off non-online multiplayer for good” – luckily, Nintendo didn’t get that memo.

          This is so far from the truth that I wonder if many so-called “hardcore” gamers are aware what the rest of the world is doing. Most people want to play together in the same room, and there is nothing the gaming industry can do about that. FPS’s and MMO’s are the exceptions, not the rule.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Well, Nintendo local multiplayer games are fighters or platformers, but all right…so, name five GOOD local multiplayer games that aren’t fighting or platforming.(And just to be contrary; fighters aren’t fun when there’s any sort of skill disparity, and platformers are often frustrating when playing with others.)

          Many racing games don’t have split-screen anymore and if they do it’s tacked on, for shooters there’s Halo and Borderlands (and Borderlands doesn’t have any competitive modes) and that’s it, sports games aren’t fun because they take too long, there can be camera issues, and again skill disparity, co-operative RPGs are non-existent, party music games are dead, and were only fun when drunk in the first place…

          Damn, long sentence. Some James Joyce stream of consciousness right here.

          Maybe local multiplayer isn’t DYING if you like certain types of games, but it is definitely not thriving.

        • ApesMa

          I was a bit harsh there and should have done some thinking before I posted, so I’ll concede these points; I guess local multiplayer is only thriving on the Wii, and my knowledge of what’s happening on other platforms is highly limited so I should more careful about my statements.

          Your last sentence there pretty much fixes the problem I had with your post. I guess I just reacted to the idea of local multiplayer gaming slowly dying when the 4 top selling games on the most popular platform of this generation, which have sold 160 million copies combined, are all almost entirely about local multiplayer gaming (and the fifth one, NSMB, also focused quite a bit on it). Somehow it just got sectioned off to a single platform.

        • Bad Horse

          @ApesMa:disqus If Nintendo won the generation, it was the most Pyrrhic of victories. They may have moved a lot of Wiis between 2006 and 2008, but they learned all the wrong lessons from it, didn’t develop long-term customers, and shot their credibility with the core audience. This generation is a toss-up and it depends how you measure it.

          Also, local multiplayer still definitely thrives on the XBLA/PSN scene. 

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Yeah, me saying “killing off” was probably a bit of an exaggeration. Nintendo does do it, and it’s thriving in that sense, but Bad Horse mentions they lost a lot of credibility among gamers who like deeper experiences. I mean, Wii Sports is fun, but they’re not lasting. Which is why Bad Horse’s point makes perfect sense; Nintendo was selling like hotcakes until 2008, but then all the soccer moms and their children got bored and moved on to iDevices. After that Nintendo had trouble adjusting, and with most of their games appealing to hardcore gamers coming out in that period when they were dominating, they were screwed. Hopefully Nintendo can rectify their mistakes with the Wii U, and have local multiplayer games that are good for both the casual and hardcore crowd, as well as good single player games.

          Bad Horse, I don’t really know of any good local multiplayer PSN games. Got any examples? Not trying to be a jerk; I’m genuinely curious. Most critically acclaimed ones seem to be single player only.

        • Bad Horse

          A lot of old-school style brawlers have come out this generation that have been fun to excellent. Castle Crashers, Scott Pilgrim, Double Dragon Neon all come to mind. I’ve also blown a bunch of time with PSN rereleases of classic fighters, like MvC2 or SSFIITHDR.

        • WL14

          I’m surprised no one’s brought up sports games in this thread. I’ve been getting my hockey fix via NHL 13 at a friend’s place once a week – we play on the same team with position lock, so I play left D and he plays center (centre). We used to have as many as 5 people playing locally, which was a lot of fun when everyone was on the same page. I don’t see that local multiplayer going away anytime soon.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          “sports games aren’t fun because they take too long, there can be camera issues, and again skill disparity”

          As I said previously, unless you have two hardcore fans of a sport, each with similar skill level, local sports multiplayer isn’t great. Some sports work better; for example, games in MLB The Show take 3 hours and are tactical affairs, while matches in Fifa take 30 minutes and have an element of luck.

      • brennanpd

        Screen peeking is unavoidable, but it does kinda kill multiplayer once you are familiar with maps.  When me and my buddies were obsessed with Red Faction 2 Breakthrough multiplayer we made a giant poster board screen to divide team one and two.  

  • oneEvolved

    I can’t get behind the idea that GoldenEye has aged “poorly”; at least when put up against its peers.

    there are only two games of which thoughts will make me wonder where I stashed my N64 (leading to a dull thud of realisation and further head-scratching over which one of my past housemates fucked off with it), and they’re GoldenEye and 1080 Snowboarding.

    hell, I even bought that N64 for $20 from a second-hand store, then $15 apiece for a total of 4 controllers, just so I could have that polygonal experience again. and I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/OZNYYTHFPZDVWNXP2QQQXZPA2Q Trent

      Goldeneye & Perfect Dark don’t work with modern controllers, but they work so easily with the N64 trident controller.

      It’s funny though, because the goldeneye/pd/timesplitters control scheme could make a big comeback if anybody applied it to a Wii remote & nunchuck. Think about it: every Wii shooter has you move the cursor everywhere around the screen and only at the edges does it move. Then when you aim down sights you move your view much quicker (though it still rotates the viewpoint way too slowly). Basically it’s the opposite of Goldeneye. Now if you applied GE controls to the Wii, you solve every issue with Wii shooters and give that unique feel of precision unavaliable on the sticks. Move the Wii remote in a direction, screen turns pretty hard and quick. No need to accurately turn and aim up close because GE’s massive autoaim gurantees quick up close battles. And for precise headshots or long range shooting, GE’s original aim down sights (can’t turn the screen, cursor moves all around the players viewpoint) gives you that precision and accuracy you can’t replicate in the same manner on control sticks.

      • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

        Great point about the aiming controls. I did notice something different when I was replaying the game the other day, and I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but you did. I wonder why this technique has fallen by the wayside. Is it too unrealistic and “computer-y” (for lack of a better word) to freeze the bounds of the screen while still allowing the player to adjust their perspective?

    • MalleableMalcontent

      Poking around the blogosphere, I get the feeling that a lot of gamers have no sense of history: it’s pretty common to bash GoldenEye, especially for the graphics. But it’s easy to forget that despite how smooshed and faded characters’ heads look, this was the first time (I think) where the hoardes of generic guards actually had different faces. Effects like the flecks that rain down when you shoot the ceiling, paintball mode, and all the explodable objects were all very detailed for their time, even compared with the PC shooters that were coming out, even if the poor N64′s hardware was being stretched beyond its limits and the resolution looked like it would be more at home on a Game Boy. Of course, similar charges could be leveled at most of the games from the early 3D era, especially those that tried for more ‘realistic’ graphics.

      Also: mission objectives. Freakin’ mission objectives. GoldenEye was, I believe, the first shooter to have mission objectives.  Closely connected to that is what still makes the game a classic today, and why its worth suffering through the elements that we may have less patience for today: the level design.  I’m not sure there’s ever been a game that did levels like Goldeneye, where they designed the levels first and then figured out what you could do in them, shaping the content to the space. And it worked amazingly.

      See http://www.zoonami.com/briefing/2004-09-02.php for an interview with designed Martin Hollis that talks more about the process.

      Compare that to say, Doom 3, which is now for some reason getting a remake/re-release. The game looked and felt atmospherically creepy, but the level design was just an endless succession of hallways.

      • GaryX

        Gamers really don’t have a sense of history other than cheap nostalgia–generally speaking. People like to look at past games and geek out over their retro nature or remember how much fun they had with them back in the day, but beyond the occasional retrospective there’s no real criticism of video games that attempts to place them in an overall context (whether someone wants to call it a “canon” or whatever). Film historians can look back at something like Citizen Kane and understand and discuss its revolutionary nature that now might appear commonplace. Further, because so much of the evolution in games has been technical rather than artistic, many gamers are constantly demanding mechanics move forward or older games be retrofitted rather than understanding the their intrinsic value to the game itself (Resident Evil has become the poster child for this mentality).

        We’re finally getting to the point where people’s first games are going to have been Halo, FarmVille, or Call of Duty rather than the oft-lauded classics, and I think we’re in for a lot of complaints about how old games don’t hold up, and we’re just remembering it wrong.

        Of course for most of the gaming community, wanting to have this conversation turns you into a hipster douchebag who’s desire to take games as a sincere medium is gettin in the way of everyone’s vidja games.

        • MalleableMalcontent

          That’s a good point that so much of the fixation on ‘advancement’ in games is thought of in terms of the technical elements. Personally, I agree with you, too, in that the game has to be considered (in part, and especially in its immediacy) as an experience unto itself.

          There are some books at least that want to seriously consider the medium – for example, Bogost and Montfort’s “Racing the Beam,” about the Atari VCS.  And I have faith that as the Gameological Society site develops, there are going to be more good conversations here.

        • Ben Silverman

          Read also: “Unit Operations” by Ian Bogost

      • http://www.facebook.com/andy.tuttle.79 Andy Tuttle

        Didn’t Nintendo Power do some contest where the grand prize was your face on a soldier’s body in Goldeneye?

      • kampfy

        I believe Dark Forces (1995) was the first FPS to have mission objectives beyond reaching the exit, beating Goldeneye by two years 

        • MalleableMalcontent

          Thanks! I was mostly a console gamer at the time…

    • http://twitter.com/DomKing456 Dom King

      Oh come on, not Ocarina or Majora’s Mask?

      • GaryX

        I’ve slowly been making my way through Majora’s Mask ever since I got my N64 back and forgot how just flat-out good that game is. Yeah, it reuses pretty much all of it’s OoT assets, but it all has these surreal dream quality that makes it work.

        Also, if Super Smash Brothers and Mario Kart aren’t something you still play, you’ve fucked up.

        • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

          On my old laptop, I used to spend hours playing Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart through the magic of N64 emulation. Yes, this was something that I was doing in 2012.

      • Bad Horse

        As overrated as I think Goldeneye is, you can’t deny it is way more influential than Ocarina or Majora’s Mask. 

        • Moonside_Malcontent

          I think there’s a lot of the N64 canon that can be seen as super
          influential in hindsight, really.  Goldeneye might be the ne plus ultra,
          sure, but Ocarina of Time? Smash Brothers?  Hell, even delightfully
          crappy NFL Blitz?  Many of these games that came out in those pioneer
          days of 3D consoles were total crap, but a select few of them helped redefine their genres or at least change peoples’ perspectives of what a genre could include.  Shooters with stealth elements?  Okay.  A platformer/fighting game with four people at once instead of just two?  Pretty big deal.  Even if you just look at OOT as a refinement of the classical Zelda formula, some grains of it are present in everything from Ico to the Prince of Persia series to Okami.  It’s fun to look at modern games and try to trace back some of those threads of influence.  And I think many of those threads were spun by the non-Euclidean ergonomics of that shitty little joystick.

        • ApesMa

          How is Goldeneye overrated? Sounds like you didn’t play it when it came out, it was a fucking miracle back then. Mission objectives, stealth and the multiplayer all revolutionized the genre, and it was an incredibly enjoyable game before technical advances and improved control schemes made it hard to go back to.

        • Bad Horse

          @ApesMa:disqus There’s two kinds of classic games. One is the true timeless classic, where the mechanics are sound enough that no matter how much gaming moves on, there is still a wonderful game in there that people can pick up fresh and enjoy without the benefit of nostalgia. The other is the “important” game, which represents a milestone or turning point in design that has been copied and refined to a T in the years since, but that by itself is substantially unpolished and overshadowed by its successors.

          As influential as Goldeneye is, it is definitely the latter. That C-button aim scheme is basically broken if you didn’t play it back then, and that’s really the core of the game, especially in multiplayer.

  • Dunwatt

    I replayed this game a few years back.  The dreamy nostalgia for my youth was quickly replaced by the cold bitterness of adulthood, frustration, and an inability to come to terms with those controls.  Whose hands are these, and when did they replace the supple, limber ones I had as a child? 

    But anyway, Oddjob still rules.  Even if he is struggling to figure out how to turn around and get out of the corner he’s wandered into, and continues to attack with his face like it’s a key-lime pie on his last day on death row.

    • rvb1023

      Same.  My personal favorite part was seeing how far I could get on the harder difficulty modes without firing a shot. And how circle strafing was faster than walking. And how enemies couldn’t turn and shoot at the same time.

      The MP probably holds up better but copious amounts of auto aim make it a lot less exciting than it used to be.

      • HobbesMkii

         The MP is still the best designed local multiplayer game out there, for my money. There aren’t any maps that are huge cavernous valleys with only four people and the balance of available weapons largely means that no one person has an advantage (outside of the Golden Gun). Sure, the graphics are laughable (some of those boxes don’t appear to be cubes), but it was fifteen years ago.

        • rvb1023

          I’d say the Timesplitter games still take the cake for local FPS MP. Made by mostly the same team as Goldeneye (The pistol reloading sounds are the same as in Goldeneye) but far more refined and versatile. I would say it even had more solid single player content, those challenge modes really were challenging.

        • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

          I’d still rank Perfect Dark as the best for local multiplayer, but that’s only because of the improved graphics over Goldeneye.

      • WL14

         Oddjob was the best. Until people figured out that you could headshot him by not moving your aim. I definitely remember playing a lot of multiplayer, but for some reason I can’t remember with whom I was playing said multiplayer. On the screen-peek issue: did anyone else figure out you could sneak up on people by staring at a wall and strafing towards where you knew they were? Or was I such a big cheater that it became an art form? Ooohhhh – now I remember who I played MP with. And he cheated so much I was forced to do that.

        Seeing those enemy animations when you shot them in the arm or leg brought back a ton of memories. This is definitely my favorite feature – I was a little disappointed not to see it on Friday. And that intro animation? Beautiful.

        • Dunwatt

           The people I played with were never clever enough to figure out the Oddjob headshot.  Or maybe they did and I just don’t remember being as bad at GoldenEye as I don’t think I was.  Up until around Halo 2 I could still hang with folks in the shooters…and then, off the cliff I went.

  • Spacemonkey Mafia

    The video is still jamming up in Chrome.
       But Goldeneye is one of the rare, small handful of games my wife, a decided non-gamer, has a history with and not me.
       It -along with Mario Cart- was what she, her then boyfriend, her brother and friends would play for hours on end in a College freshman-haze of marijuana smoke.
       She neither remembers nor cares anything about the mechanics, maps or the game’s place in the history of FPS’s, but still remembers it fondly as a really fun game her and her friends could play and laugh their asses off.
       I, on the other hand, was spending my College freshman-haze of marijuana smoke playing Ocarina of Time in a dark room with headphones on.

    • Effigy_Power

       We played copious amounts of WipeOut after smoking copious amounts of weed, because it really was the worst gameplay experience to have once your system was sufficiently slowed down. Baked out of our minds, huddled 4 feet away from a 28inch CRT television, with dilated pupils and eating M&Ms (who really lost out by never advertising as a stoner snack) and hitting every damn wall on those snaky courses.
      We tried it with other racing games, like the terrible PS1 Ridge Racer and so on, but somehow only WipeOut turned being really stoned into a gaming experience that totally wiped us out, if you pardon the pun.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia

        I don’t have a lot of good to say about first-gen polygon games, but it was an advancement that did correlate nicely with one’s formative pot smoking years.
           Such a quick and fundamental shift in how games looked, played and behaved dovetailed nicely with the exaggerated sense of consequential enormity brought on by a lungful of pot smoke.
           M&M’s, huh?  As evidence of how rapidly my youth is receding behind me, I’ve only recently come to appreciate the platonic wonder of the M&M after we got a bag to dole out for my daughter’s potty training reward.
           I’m lame, now.  I was lame then, too, but youth and drugs did a good job of obscuring that fact.

    • Bad Horse

      I never played much Goldeneye until late in college, when I finally got my hands on a secondhand N64. This was like 2005, mind, so it already looked and played very, very old. Anyway, there was a girl I knew, a real innocent-faced choir ace who I was hanging out with, and she walked by while I had the door open and she was all “Goldeneye? I haven’t played this in years” and she grabs controller 2 and just DESTROYED me. Absolutely took my ass out. Then she literally giggled and walked out, leaving me agape with a 20-1 defeat on my screen.

      Haven’t played Goldeneye since. I missed the boat in 98 and there’s no getting back on.

      • Djur

        That’s the hottest story I ever heard.

      • Effigy_Power

         ”real innocent-faced choir ace”

        Code for “f@%#ing tigress in the sack”…

      • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

        It’s amazing how video games can bring out a different side of people. In my freshman year of college, I lived in a dorm. Across the hall from me lived a guy who had recently immigrated to Canada from China. He was a very devout Christian, and he was one of the nicest, meekest people I have ever met in my life.

        Our dorm had an unwritten open-door policy, which was that unless you were studying, sleeping, or away, you left your room door open. So, often times, when I was playing computer games, people would wander in and comment on what I was doing. One day, my neighbour from across the hall walked in while I was playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. I was in the middle of a mission where I had to drive around in a cop car. I knew that my neighbour was a big Starcraft fan, so I expected him to be interested in what I was playing. But I didn’t expect this reaction:

        “Run over the old lady!”

        “What?”

        “You should run over the old lady!” He was laughing hysterically at this point, pointing at the spot on the screen where I had just passed an old lady. I was shocked. I mean, this was a guy who used to get up early every Sunday to go to church.

        I tried my best not to react. “I’m in the middle of a mission. I can’t do that right now or I’ll fail.”

        He seemed unfazed. “You should run over those people over there!” he said, pointing madly at the screen.

        “Maybe later.”

        “You should blow them up. Do you have a bazooka?”

        At this point, I lost control of my vehicle and ran over a couple of pedestrians. “No, not yet. But I did manage to kill those pedestrians, so…”

        “More! More! More!”

        He watched me play Vice City on a few more occasions, and every time, he would demand that I go on a wanton killing spree. His bloodthirst seemed to be increasing, and I worried that I was corrupting this nice, seemingly innocent guy with my evil video games. But outside of my room, he was as friendly and meek as ever, with not a hint of the disregard for virtual human life that he displayed when I was playing Vice City.

        One day, I talked to one of my neighbour’s close friends to get some insight into his behaviour.

        “Don’t worry about it,” said the friend, “He gets like that when he plays video games. It’s normal for him.”

        I wasn’t entirely convinced that such behaviour was “normal,” but I felt reassured that it wasn’t me who had corrupted him. Some folks just turn into different people when they play Starcraft or GTA. I’ve lost contact with him now, but I still think about the shocking Jekyll-Hyde transformation that my neighbour used to undergo when in the presence of video games.

        • Enkidum

          I looked at my stats for GTA IV over the weekend, and I’ve run over something like 1700 people. I’m pretty sure that only includes saved games too, so all the times when I went on mad killing sprees and quit after getting killed without saving, those aren’t included. 

          Why yes, I’m a perfectly normal person.

        • Bad Horse

          When the DC Sniper shit was going down, I reenacted it in GTAIII. Mostly I just blew motherfuckers away with a sniper rifle from parking ramps. 

          I too am a normal person.

          • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

            Bad Horse, GTA III didn’t have co-op.

            (I’m a terrible person and I’m going to burn in hell for that comment.)

    • GaryX

      It’s weird that this video works in Internet Explorer but crashes the shit out of Chrome.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=836639950 Evan Kersnar

    We have a 64 set up in the break room and GE is the hottest thing going.  I’m thinking of setting up a tournament.

  • flowsthead

    There is a pretty cool mod, Goldeneye Source ( http://www.moddb.com/mods/goldeneye-source ), which you can play for free. I think the game holds up really well, and I enjoy playing it a lot more than halo. For one, the characters are actually unique instead of playing random colored Spartan. My other reasons are probably nostalgia based, but damn do I love the sounds of that game. The gasping and wheezing and blowing up sounds are just so satisfying.

  • Geo X

    Perfect Dark is better.  That is all.

    • AHyperkineticLagomorph

      The laptop gun.
      The far-sight.
      An assault rifle that you could turn into a proximity mine.

      I’m pretty sure most modern FPS games would love an arsenal like that.

    • GaryX

      Incorrect! I recently played it for the first time, and while good, it’s funny how much of it is just GoldenEye with a different texture pack.

      • Geo X

        Oh yeah?  Well can you play Goldeneye as a grey alien with a human head?  Oh, you can’t?  I rest my case.

    • Djur

      Pros: more interesting arsenal, more customizations, AI opponents
      Cons: level design isn’t quite as good, some of them are pretty garish and hard to see things in, performance issues

      I feel like GoldenEye is tighter and more balanced and aesthetically coherent, while Perfect Dark has more and cooler stuff. I love them both.

      Especially the instant-death crossbow, which makes the gold PP7 look like a peashooter.

      • MalleableMalcontent

        Having just replayed Perfect Dark a few months ago, I’d say the difference (at least for single player) is that GoldenEye feels much more like an expansive world that you’re a part of, and have to find your way through. I loved poking around GoldenEye’s levels just to see what obscure corners the main mission didn’t require me to traverse.

        Perfect Dark is a much more focused experience, but – especially if you play through on medium difficulty so you know what you’re doing, then switch to hard – it does have an amazing momentum and an awesome ‘action movie’ feeling.

        In the decade+ since it came out, more games have aimed for being ‘cinematic’, often getting literal with the ‘mash the button in the middle of an otherwise uncontrolled cinema scene’ style that was in the GoldenEye remake. Perfect Dark and GoldenEye, though, both worked within the mechanics and bounds of their games’ main engine, and I think they’re all the better for it.

  • vinnybushes

    I think what I always took away as a lesson from GoldenEye was the way the multiplayer ruleset was so insanely flexible. My friends and I developed a multiplayer mode of our own design that we played exclusively at sleepovers (which were always four people. Not a coincidence). There was something about the malleability of the rule set that sparked our imaginations, and everywhere you went everyone had their own house rules and modes, just like monopoly
    . You have to allow inventiveness in multiplayer for it to remain satisfying, which is why so few multiplayer games appeal to me over the long term. Also, having three other people in the room allowed for other people to be an immediate springboard to whatever crazy idea you had next. There never will be anything quite like it again.

    • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

      Only proximity mines was a frequent ruleset that my friends and I used. Man, that used to get hilarious. And explodey.

      (We used to do the same thing in Perfect Dark, but we’d add in 8 Perfect PeaceSims, so we’d be running around trying to place proximity mines while desperately trying not to get the fuck punched out of us. And if I accidentally threw a mine that landed on a PeaceSim, then I just had to watch in horror as he ran up to me and blew us both up.)

      • vinnybushes

         I would occasionally chase people with live grenades and get the  “lemming” award which was awesome. The game mode we invented was a 3 on 1 game where I had +10 health and would continually assault my friend’s “base” that they set up in that weird tower on that map with all the red railings. It usually ended badly for them.

  • Enkidum

    Never played the single player, but me and various groups of friends fragged the fuck out of each other on their N64s.  Such an entertaining say to spend the entire night until your eyeballs bled and your fingers were twitching mounds of calluses. 

    I think the point about Halo being Goldeneye tweaked to perfection is kind of harsh on Bungie, but essentially true. And to this day it’s got the 4-player split screen multiplayer. 

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

      I think I remember reading that Halo started out as an RTS but was changed into an FPS pretty early in the dev cycle. I’d be interested to know more about the link between the two games. 

      • GaryX

        Here’s some Bungie guys doing commentary through various builds of Halo including the RTS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN9vO_gRzoI

  • Kevin Irmiter

    I was a PC gamer, so I turned my nose at this game at the time. With good reason, I think–this came out at about the same time as Unreal and Half Life, which had better graphics, engines that ran smoother, and just offered a more polished experience overall. Hell, I still think Doom has way better gameplay than this one, in single player at least.

    I did sometimes play the multiplayer, although the one of my friends who was most hardcore into it would always get pissed at me for turning on the auto-aim when I played. But I hated trying to aim with that analog stick.

    • Effigy_Power

      I had the same experience. There were a lot of really horrid shooters for the PC at the time, trying to cash in on the “Doom” wave, all of which lacked any subtlety (Rise of the Triads, anyone?), but for me that was what FPS gaming was supposed to be like.
      Influenced by those early days of gaming, the concept of sneaking in first person still hasn’t really settled for me (I love sneaking in 3rd person for some reason) and I still abhor having to aim at something with a controller, even though they have become so much more precise.
      That said we played GoldenEye several times while I still lived on Campus (I moved off-Campus because I got stuck with college-comedy-style unbearable room-mates) and did have fun, I was just never good at it.

      • Djur

        Honestly, I find aiming with the N64 controller a lot more precise than most modern controllers. I’m definitely a PC/mouselook fan, but the GoldenEye controls are burned into my muscle memory and feel very natural. Although I play with a few control tweaks usually.

    • Enkidum

      I don’t think there’s any question that the single-player here doesn’t offer much that a contemporary PC FPS couldn’t do better – and certainly Half Life and Unreal would have smoked it. But it owned multiplayer, and as the folks in the video said that’s partly just in virtue of being on a TV screen. And the single player (apparently, I never played it) was perfectly good, and somewhat innovative in terms of stealth.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        I only ever had consoles growing up (as opposed to a pc), and Goldeneye is very dear to me, but I’m not so sure that it did own multiplayer at the time. I mean, when did Counter-Strike come out? I remember being in awe hearing about my brother’s friend who had several PCs set up in his basement for LAN parties.

        • Djur

          Yeah, but the total investment for those LAN parties would be thousands of dollars, potentially, while an N64+GoldenEye+four controllers were much more affordable.

        • Enkidum

          Just wikied it and Goldeneye is 97 while Counterstrike is 99. But your general point is true either way – e.g. Duke Nukem 3d comes out in 96, and it has a fairly legendary LAN multiplayer too (and even an internet multiplayer, which must have been one of the first successful ones). The only categorical difference with Goldeneye is ease of access. You could just have four friends come by and sit on the same couch they always sat on, with no special set up necessary. This opened the game up to people who had no idea what LAN stood for, and weren’t comfortable futzing around in DOS or whatever.

          I’m sure there’s still earlier examples, but if it’s not the single first, Goldeneye is one of the first, and certainly one of the first good ones.

        • http://www.facebook.com/andy.tuttle.79 Andy Tuttle

           Enkidum, I would think that Doom was the first successful online multiplayer game. In fact I’m pretty sure that’s where the term “frag” comes from in gaming, but I could be wrong. The first game I played online was probably checkers in this little gaming world Sierra created in the early 90′s. That was also my first exposure to chat rooms.

        • El Zilcho

          Doom was a pain in the neck to play online multiplayer in. The biggie was Quake.

  • http://twitter.com/Evad_Dalrymp David Dalrymple

    GoldenEye is the only FPS I’ve played extensively on multiplayer. It came out at a time when out house was constantly filled with teenage boys.

    MY preferred N64 multiplayer game, though, was WCW vs. NWO: Revenge. The quintessential casual competitive game, even if you could cheat with the stick. 

    • AHyperkineticLagomorph

      The same guys who made WCW vs NWO: Revenge went on to make WWF No Mercy, which is the game I consider the pinnacle of sweaty, oiled up giants in tights beating each other senseless with blunt objects simulator. Everything was so polished. The pacing was perfect. The animation was fluid (unlike the Smackdown! series of games whose animation was particularly simple). And best of all, you could take a friend/sibling and piledrive him through an announcer’s table.

      I’ve never found a wrestling game that fun again. Although, to be fair, I stopped looking when I stopped being 12 years old.

      • GaryX

        Yup. WWF No Mercy was a fantastic game in a genre that had no sense being that good.

        • http://www.avclub.com/users/ghaleonq,4597/ GhaleonQ

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcb8RoxQPD0  In this situation, you are HHH, I am Regal, and wrestling games are Eugene.

          But, seriously, wrestling video games seem to me to be the easiest games to make awesome.

        • GaryX

          @GhaleonQ:disqus That was incredible.

          I have no idea how people think that stuff isn’t staged.

        • El Zilcho

          If there was a wrestling game as good as No Mercy now, I’d buy it, even though I haven’t watched wrestling in over a decade.

      • Bad Horse

        Dude, I loved Smackdown 2. It let you play a 60-minute Hell In A Cell wherein you could actually tombstone Mankind through the top of the cage through a table 15 feet below on the mat.

      • http://www.avclub.com/users/ghaleonq,4597/ GhaleonQ

        Well, there are some people who hold that Revenge is better or that the Japanese versions http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_Pro_Wrestling_2:_Oudou_Keishou (ever wonder why they included so many “extra” items, moves, and taunts?) are better.  They are, naturally, wrong.

        They also make the handheld Yakuza/Like A Dragon games, which have AKI wrestling-influenced sections.

        That said, the Japanese fighting game companies made some pretty good pro wrestling (and sumo!) games in the 1990s, and Wrestlemania and In Your House are my preffered Midway-published, digitized-graphics fighting games to Mortal Kombat.

        I’ve mentioned how I’m also a little obsessed with Fire Pro Wrestling, which was made by all-time greats at Human and Spike, which has influenced Grasshopper Manufacture’s games as well as the only good modern beat-’em-up series, Kenka Bancho/Brawling Hoodlum, and which just had an awful Xbox Live cash-in.  You should buy Returns for the Playstation 2.  It’s really inexpensive and a top-notch party game.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        The only wrasslin game I ever really liked was Def Jam Vendetta. Holy hell I’d love to find a copy of that somewhere.

        • http://www.avclub.com/users/ghaleonq,4597/ GhaleonQ

          Spoiler: ALSO BY THE SAME GUYS.

          There are whole tubs of used copies in Wisconsin Gamestops, if you want to make the trip.  I can promise you every MX Versus ATV game for 5 cents as a bonus.

  • Effigy_Power

    Funny enough, when I think of GoldenEye’s legacy, I think much more of the Hitman series than of Halo.
    The sneaking, elimination of guards and soldiers, theft of mission sensitive materials, evasion of cameras and spotlights, intermingled with full blown shootouts… never having played MGS or other stealth games really before the first Hitman (unless you count the original and infuriatingly horrid Rainbow Six) I instantly compared it to the 2 hours of GoldenEye I had played in college.
    What I remember most was that someone I played with mentioned a few times that the game would be so much easier if you could just take a soldier’s uniform and pretty much tapdance through the levels. For a professional operative, GoldenEye’s James Bond had a pretty limited skillset.

    • GaryX

      Is the original Rainbow Six really that horrid? I haven’t played it in ages, but I remember it being incredibly engaging if difficult.

      • Effigy_Power

        It’s perfectly possible that I played it wrong, but the fact that missions often failed because the moronic AI couldn’t find a door or suddenly just walked into a hallway, with no possible influence at all times by yourself, made it too frustrating for me.
        I lost more SWAT guys than pennies in some of those matches and while a lot of them were my fault, nothing makes a game more unbearable than when an otherwise perfect run is spoiled by unthinkable lapses of the AI team members.

    • Enkidum

      I think you can say something like Halo = Goldeneye multiplayer raised to perfection and Hitman = Goldeneye single player raised to perfection.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/IQ2BZIV3YMPBDZM6ZTKICH6SRA James

    This was thorough and enjoyable. The only thing I would add is that Goldeneye also had difficultly challenges, ranked by “agent status,” which unlocked different modes, i.e., paint-ball, big-head, or other models. I think this marked a shift from completionist (like collecting all the stars in Mario) to more of the modern achievements we have today.

    As for the game not holding up, I suspect the N64 trident controller doesn’t help (and as another commenter mentioned below). The graphics aged appropriately (Halo’s first iterations didn’t look that much better, see early Master Chief’s helmet on the Mac editions), but that control scheme is neither the PC’s mouse and keyboard nor the now well established dual analog.

    But what the heck happened to Rare? Was it the continued attachment to the decaying N64 that spent the prestige garnered by Goldeneye? Was Microsoft’s acquisition less to develop the Xbox platform and more to stunt rivals?

    • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

      I’m really glad that a couple people have mentioned the agent-status objectives. I did have some interviews on that but had to cut them for length. It figures that Gameological readers would fill in the blanks regardless.

      When I was playing the game recently, my old save was still intact, and I saw that a few missions still had the “00 Agent” objective incomplete. I immediately got that itch again to TRULY complete the game.

      It’s amazing how much a simple stroke of design genius like that could add untold hours of interest to the game. Of course, those stratified mission objectives were effective because the level design itself was careful enough and rich enough to support them all. Put another way, the agent-status thing invited you to discover the layers that the game had, but it only worked because the game HAD those layers.

      • duwease

        The strategy of having each difficulty level add totally new objectives to the existing levels is something I’ve always been surprised hasn’t become more popular.  I guess with the advent of achievements, that’s a cheaper and easier way of doing the same thing, but GoldenEye may have been the first game that I kept replaying the single-player on repeatedly to meet the special objectives.  I’ve been a obsessive completionist ever since.

        • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

          Command and Conquer: Renegade did something similar with secondary and hidden (a.k.a. tertiary) objectives. Trying to accomplish every single objective could involve hours and hours of replaying, especially on the hardest difficulty setting.

          C&C:R was very much an old-school shooter experience in that regard. It wasn’t the hyper-linear, spectacle-heavy experience offered by Halo or Call of duty. There was no regenerating health. I think that’s part of why it was so poorly-received: it was sticking to the old shooter tropes established by the likes of Goldeneye just as they were going out of fashion.

      • dmikester

        I agree with the objectives being genius; without too much effort, it made the game have enormous replay value, and it also made you have to approach levels in completely different ways.  I will never forget the experience of trying to get the speed run objective in the second level on 00 Agent, which granted the invincibility cheat.  It was so, so, so difficult, and something I still consider one of the most memorable accomplishments of my gaming career.  However, despite it being a not particularly good game, Perfect Dark did these objectives even better; you had levels where there were entire areas and characters you didn’t have to deal with on easier difficulty modes.

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/IQ2BZIV3YMPBDZM6ZTKICH6SRA James

          I tip my hat to you sir. That challenge was in the chemical facility level. And it was always mere seconds beyond my reach…

          • dmikester

            Why, thank you. It is absolutely one of the hardest things I’ve ever accomplished in a video game, and took I don’t want to know how many tries. But I was really, really obsessed with Goldeneye, and absolutely wanted to find and do everything in the game.

        • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

          Yeah, I’m with James. Kudos. I don’t remember if I ever finished that challenge, and I’m afraid to check, because I know I poured many hours into it, and I suspect they were fruitless.

      • large_marge_sent_me

         *Very slight dishonored spoilers below*

        I was thinking the same thing about mission objectives when playing the ‘Golden Cat’ mission in Dishonored last night. (Trying to remain vague…) At one point you can do something to make you not have to kill certain people, and the result is that there’s no incentive to go to the part of the level where they are.

        And since the game dis-incentivizes kills, it really decreases the value of exploration. If you tread into unknown areas, you’re more likely to have to kill someone. With a slightly better/deeper mission objective system, there’d be a reason to “discover the layers that the game had”.

    • http://www.facebook.com/andy.tuttle.79 Andy Tuttle

      Rare didn’t really make any FPS games after that. There was Perfect Dark and Perfect Dark Zero, but really they just kind of started making platformers. Banjo Kazooie, Conker, Grabbed by the Ghoulies, Star Fox Adventures, Kameo and Viva Pinata. I guess they just didn’t like the FPS genre, or maybe they thought they weren’t as good as others, or maybe Microsoft and Nintendo just wanted them to make cute jumping games for the kids. Who knows.

  • rogerbix

    These videos would be much more entertaining if there was someone just offscreen that would punch Ever Mainard in the shoulder every time she says the word “like”.

    • http://www.gildedgreen.com/ Girard

       Hey, you leave Never Cartesian alone!

  • Captain Internet

    Firstly, the video is still causing Google Chrome to crash- other browsers are giving me the same error message as before. 

    Secondly, this wasn’t the first first-person game to do stealth; that would probably be Ultima Underworld.

    Finally, who is everyone in this video talking to? It’s really unnerving. Why won’t they look into the camera? It’s exactly like being Patrick Swayze in Ghost, to the point where I am now typing this from inside Whoopi Goldberg.

    • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

      1. I’m very sorry about that. I will poke the tech team again.

      2. It would be great to hear your insights on Ultima Underworld. I don’t think anybody was trying to maintain that GoldenEye was absolutely the first game to do stealth — rather, it was a game that brought it into the popular consciousness for a lot of folks.

      3. Errol Morris’ Interrotron is a cool thing, but having subjects speak to an off-camera interviewer is an extremely common (really the standard) way of shooting interviews like this. It’s fine if you find it weird, but unless you never watch any documentaries, reality shows, or news shows, you must feel like Whoopi Goldberg an awful lot. Which, in fairness to Whoopi Goldberg, is probably not so bad.

      • Captain Internet

        That came across as an angry list, didn’t it? Apologies. Anyway:

        1. You might want to tell them it’s happening on the AV Club site as well, and that there’s several comments on the ‘AV Undercover’ series where other people have said they’re having the same problem. 

        2. I think I got the wrong end of the stick on that then.  I never finished the first Ultima Underworld- I was too young and terrified of the dark to get very far at all. But I remember watching my cousin play it, and casting a sneak spell, and being amazed that the world responded. 

        3. I don’t watch much TV these days, so any chance to get my Whoopi on is welcome. To be honest I’ve just always found the format makes me slightly uncomfortable, but perhaps I should make my own damn documentary rather than criticising yours. 

        • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

          I give regular commenters like yourself the benefit of the doubt re: apparent grumpiness, so no worries. The AVC tech crew is definitely aware of the video player’s enduring hatred of PC Chrome on both The A.V. Club and Gameological. I pinged them for an update to see what’s what, and I’ll report back what I hear. My fuzzy understanding is that it’s a pretty tricky bug that was introduced by a change in Windows Chrome’s handling of Flash and not-Flash video. (The player is supposed to serve not-Flash video to Chrome.)

          The detail in Gameological readers’ bug reports has been helpful in tracking this down, so much obliged to you and the others for letting us know. I apologize again for the crashiness.

        • Effigy_Power

          There are some massive Flash issues these days because some of the latest updates have been tremendously botched. Look into your Chrome Plugins and make sure you don’t have 2 Flash plugins active (I had that in Firefox). After deactivating the newer of the two, everything went fine again.
          There’s a lot of flack for Flash at the moment due to some terrible bugs. I would wonder if Silverlight is laughing, but they’re no better.
          Might be time to go beyond Flash, internet magic developers.

          But yeah, check your Flash plugin.

      • http://www.facebook.com/andy.tuttle.79 Andy Tuttle

        “I was a fool to think anyone would want nude pictures of Whoopi Goldberg.”

  • JokersNuts

    It’s aged fine nerds. But I don’t play your halos or call of dutys, so I guess I wouldn’t know. Goldeneye is awesome.

    • Enkidum

      Congratulations.

    • NarcolepticPanda

      The reflexes of the majority of the population of this board are too languid for Halo and Call of Duty.

      I JUST CALLED ALL Y’ALL OLD

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        Halo and Calladuty are generally to slow for me. I prefer Quake 3 and TF2 and using a mouse to look around and all that jazz. 

        I AM YOUTHFUL.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          UR OLDRE THAN ME CUZ UR MOM LETS U PLAY MORTEL KOMBAT AND U JUST SUCK AT COD BECAUSE UR A DUMBASS N00B

          *spits out string of offensive slurs*

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

      The control scheme is just butts. I have enough trouble with modern console fps games. 

    • Effigy_Power

      Don’t use the “N”word. Just call them… imagineers.
      Also us folks from the Unreal side of the genre laugh pithily at your war-shooters and use the Flack cannon to do so.

      • JokersNuts

        I say it totally out of love. My name is JokersNuts after all ;-)

      • Enkidum

        Unreal all the way, mofos!

        I seriously love that game – wish I was better at it.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/7HJSKEMHZXO77XDHFCVZNZQSKU Xan Innes

       I agree. The control scheme certainly isn’t as intuitive and fluid as double analog, but it isn’t as bad as most of the whining indicates. It just feels a lot worse when you go back to it after using modern control schemes and not having played it in a while.

      3-4 summers ago, my brother got on a kick where he and a buddy would come by at around 11:30 most nights, and we would play Goldeneye till 3 or 4 in the morning. We hadn’t really played in years, but it was a blast. Maybe the graphics aren’t great, and maybe the controls don’t quite hold up to later developments, but the level design is top-notch, and the sheer joy of split-screen FPS action never gets old.

      Also, I continually won 1v2 matches because of my wicked grenade-launcher skills :). There’s nothing quite like bouncing a grenade around the corner in Caves to blow up someone who has no idea where it came from.

      • Effigy_Power

        Calling people’s control preferences “whining” is almost never a good idea, pal.

  • http://www.olympicartichoke.podbean.com/ The Warfreak

    Did anyone else buy a Gameshark just so you could play Cradle in multiplayer? Cause I did.

    • The Otter White Meat

      Why that level wasn’t multiplayer from the start is beyond me.

  • PappyBojiggity

    I love this feature and think the contributors and content are amazing.  I used to watch my little brother dominate ALL of these games.  Screen-peeping is totally legal in Goldeneye.  Maybe not other games, but for Goldeneye it was part of the experience.  Is Castlevania, Star Fox, or Mega-Man going to be on this list?  

    Keep ‘em coming and keep up the great work, G-Society!

    • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

      Thanks very much, Pappy. You’re very kind to take the time to say so. The next video, where we look back at Dragon Warrior, will conclude this first “season” of The Seeds. I did consider Mega Man for these videos, especially because it’s very dear to my heart, but I went with Metroid instead. And I think that Star Fox is a great suggestion for a second round of videos. I’ll keep it in mind!

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        Oh oh oh, do Yoshi’s Island! 

        You asked for requests demands, right?

      • Djur

        Dragon Warrior! Oh goodness I am so looking forward to that. I hope you touch on Dragon Warrior IV, which I feel is insanely underrated and surprisingly epic for an 8-bit RPG.

        • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

          The video focuses mainly on the first game, but I agree with you re: Dragon Warrior IV!

      • Effigy_Power

        I’d enjoy to see people talk about Sims or Black and White or some other “Johnny-come-lately” of game innovation.

      • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

        I nominate RollerCoaster Tycoon, SimCity 200, and the original Commander Keen for another round of videos. (I think my PC bias is showing.)

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Civilization 3!

          Half Life!

          Deus Ex!

          Counter Strike!

          *salutes*

          • http://www.avclub.com/users/merve,96925/ Merve

            I was going to suggest both Half-Life and Deus Ex, but I’ve read a lot of retrospectives on both. Gaming writers seem particularly keen to trace the history of the RPG or action genres, but there’s hasn’t been as much discussion of the simulation genre.

            That being said, I’d love to see Gameological’s take on those two games, especially since in my view, they, along with Call of Duty and Halo, defined the modern shooter.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Ah well, I meant that as more of a quip about the PC master race, but didn’t know if it would be PC to say *nazi salute*

          See what I did there?

          But yeah, in seriousness, I nominate Half Life. Even though it’s apparently oft discussed, Gameological will discuss it cooler.

      • http://twitter.com/SeannyBoy Sean Smith

        How about Driver?

        Oh, and Teti: You weren’t into Bond movies before this game? Fer real?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=508277364 Pat Dussault

    Proximity mines or Pistols on License to Kill, in the Facility.

    • GaryX

      Proximity mines.

      Caves.

      Pure anger and frustration.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky

        Proxy mines on Complex was my jam.

    • CNightwing

       All proxomity mines, all the time!

  • Aurora Boreanaz

    Shortly after high school, I carpooled with a friend to visit another friend on the coast, and we decided to head home late at night (around 1am).  In the middle of a mountain overpass (Route 17 between Santa Cruz and San Jose), both of his headlights went out.  Luckily he knew another friend in the South Bay, so we crashed there for the evening.  It was four of us playing GoldenEye all night, three drinking whiskey and soda.  (I tried it, but decided that whiskey tasted like liquid scotch tape, and passed on refills.)  Surprisingly fun to play against three drunk guys and still not totally dominate…either they were really good (likely) or I really sucked (also likely).  Finally slept for about two hours before heading home after dawn.

    Ah, the joys of being young(er).  I can barely make it to 2am now, and have to sleep for 10 hours to recover afterward.

    • Effigy_Power

      If I have my Ensure and my wool socks, I can make it to 2:30am.
      -rubs Bengay on everything-

  • stryker1121

    The mutiplayer was great, I whipped my friends pretty regularly in deathmatch;)– but the solo campaign was where it was at for me. 007 agent difficulty was bastard tough, what with ultra-aggressive enemies and extra mission directives to get through. It would take me weeks to beat a single level (Facility and Silo were particularly murderous) and I could not beat the Satellite stage on hard. One of the toughest endagames ever w/ that bullet sponge jerk Trevaylan (sp) running around along with 200 of his henchmen. The Moonraker bit was difficult, too. All in all a superlative shooter and one of my favorite games ever. Don’t know if I’d go solo again, but I’d be up for some MP.

  • http://www.facebook.com/bryanska Bryan Scholtes

    More words, please. I can’t watch the video at work.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/IQ2BZIV3YMPBDZM6ZTKICH6SRA James

    I tip my hat to you sir. That challenge was in the chemical facility level. And it was always mere seconds beyond my reach…

  • dmikester

    I typically can’t stand multiplayer in games, and even more so in modern games because of the anonymity of networks.  But there are two games where I got obsessed with multiplayer: Quake and Goldeneye.  I loved the single player in both games, but the multiplayer was just incredible, especially in Goldeneye, and the fact that you were playing with friends in the room just made it that much sweeter.  

    I actually became infamous amongst my friends for being vicious in Goldeneye, and one of the funniest moments of my gaming life came during a match where we were playing in the Egyptian level and I had a grenade launcher.  There were four of us, and it was a small TV screen, so it was pretty hard to see anything clearly.  I was hiding up high and just fired a grenade at random, talking trash the whole time.  Of course, it took an amazing bounce off some wall and randomly hit one of the players point blank, killing him instantly.  Result?  Everyone threw down their controllers and refused to play with me.  Yes, I love Goldeneye.

  • http://www.facebook.com/andy.tuttle.79 Andy Tuttle

    I think the big success of Goldeneye’s mulitplayer is that the N64 came
    pre-made to allow for party play with it’s four controller slots. That
    was a HUGE deal when it happened, and without that feature I think the
    N64 would have been even more of a failure than it was (although I’d
    hardly call it a failure, maybe let down.) Goldeneye was always a part
    of mine and my friends after school activities, along with Mario Kart 64
    and Mario Party. Really if you think about it, not only did Goldeneye
    popularize the FPS on consoles, but its brilliant use of the four
    controller ports made that a must-have feature on all future consoles,
    well, except the ps2.

    This was the best video you’ve done so far
    and I have a theory, I think its the game that most of the people in the
    video have actually spent the most time with. Most of you seem to be
    around my age, so that means Goldeneye either came out in your teens or
    early twenties, and I think that’s the time people play games the most.
    As a kid you have other things to play with and more restrictions from
    your parents and as an adult you have a job and bigger responsibilities,
    but that golden time between ages 12 to 22 you really have nothing else
    to worry about. The gleam of nostalgia in people’s eyes were finally
    there in this video, and it was the first time I actually saw, in my
    opinion, genuine passion for the game. Metroid came out when the panel
    were children, GTA 3 came out in their mid twenties, so maybe there
    aren’t as many good memories to go along with playing the game. Then
    again, maybe people liked Goldeneye more because of its social aspect.
    Dammit, your video made me think! How dare you.

  • http://twitter.com/devlin1 Mike Olson

    I still enjoy Goldeneye — but I don’t really play new video games these days. I did play the new Goldeneye for the Wii, and it was kind of awful. I guess the gameplay was fine, but they totally sucked all the charm out of it. What’s so compelling about Goldeneye for the N64 is how fiercely devoted Rare seemed to be to replicating as much of the movie as possible. Their attention to detail was both impressive and overkill, and I loved it. 

    • LeaveTheBronx

      I was amazed on watching the movie again after having played the game obsessively just how much of the film ends up in the game.

  • His_Space_Holiness

    I enjoyed the little mini-debate about stealth. I always play stealth if that’s an option in games, though I’ve played Goldeneye but once. I fumbled around uselessly in Oblivion before playing a stealth character, and when I finally get around to Skyrim I’ll likely do the same. What Teti said about the real joy being in the moment where the enemy doesn’t know you’re there is very true. Invisibility is fun as hell.

  • http://www.facebook.com/obiwankikobi Kiko Correa

    How in the world was there a discussion of stealth in gaming where .syphon filter gets mentioned but not metal gear solid?

    • LeaveTheBronx

      It was also a little surprising that Goldeneye was given credit for having popularized the concept – while Doom 2 didn’t have stealth exactly, you could sneak up on things and kill them.  Even Wolfenstein allowed this on very rare occasions.  Goldeneye levels necessitated stealth – but hell, so did lots of Metal Gear 1.  So yeah, not new.

    • Effigy_Power

      I would say probably because these videos must be edited for time and there are so many games to mention. Something will always fall by the wayside.

      • http://www.facebook.com/obiwankikobi Kiko Correa

        I totally agree, you can’t be exhaustive of an entire genre in one short video and the focus of the video is a completely different game.

        That being said, when talking about the roots of stealth in gaming, Metal Gear is THE game. The fact that it wasn’t mentioned but syphon filter, a game that was basically riding MG’s coat tails, was just very surprising to me.

        I nearly shouted “C’mon” Gob Bluth style at the screen when he said that.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Yeah, of course they have time constraints, but still…I was surprised about that. Not that Syphon Filter doesn’t have stealth, but Metal Gear did it first.

    • http://gameological.com/author/johnteti/ John Teti

      Well, Scott was talking about the sensation of being a spy in that segment, not stealth specifically. I included Scott’s remark because that spy thing felt like a more direct connection to GoldenEye and because it was an unexpected connection for me. I generally try to gravitate toward the less expected connections in editing the videos (and in editing the entire site, frankly).

      You are absolutely right that Metal Gear Solid is a landmark in stealth games, and a couple of people did mention it in the interviews. It is the very familiarity of the parallel that made it less compelling for me.

      This is not to denigrate your observation, which is a good one. MGS would be a great candidate for this series, in fact, and I’d love to hear more about how you think Metal Gear compares to GoldenEye.

      Off-topic edit: Does anyone have a solution to Disqus’ occasional habit of eating all my line breaks and smushing everything into one long paragraph? (Or maybe I should just be less long-winded…)

      • http://www.facebook.com/obiwankikobi Kiko Correa

        Personally I dig responses that are a little long, and I especially appreciate the reasoning you gave, and the thought behind not including Metal Gear in this discussion. I definitely respect the desire to go outside the most obvious most direct connection for something a little deeper. I think it’s the best reasoning possible and totally appreciate that effort. That level of thoughtfulness really shows throughout the site.

        For me though, I think that in this particular case, even in regards to what better represents the spy experience, the less obvious reference in this case was a vastly inferior version of the obvious one. Sort of the direct to video knock off of a Pixar movie. That may very well be a view of Syphon Filter not shared by others. As someone who owned and played both a lot, that’s how I saw it.

        As for how I see Metal Gear comparing to Goldeneye I think I’m pretty biased if you couldn’t tell. I never owned a 64 so my experience of Goldeneye was mostly limited to multiplayer matches at friends’ houses and sleepovers. I did play a level or two but my biggest impression of the single player campaign was that the camera sway gave me motion sickness.

        So my biggest takeaway of Goldeneye, like most, was the multiplayer experience, where with Metal Gear I felt like the experience was by design much more of a solitary one. That along with that fact that there are SO many memorable story moments, twists and experiences that I can remember my experience of specifically. 

        I would be really interested to hear the point of view of someone who had completed the campaign on Goldeneye how they felt it stacked up. Most of what I hear is that when you talk about Goldeneye, you talk about that one sleepover where your friends little brother killed you with the such and such, and when you talk about Metal Gear you talk about the first time you changed the controller to beat Psycho Mantis.

        (as a ps: in my thoughts above i am trying only to think about these games as compared to their era appropriate counterparts, but when talking about MGS vs. Bond as well as the spy experience in video games I think Snake Eater deserves a mention. I love the great exchange between Snake and Major Zero in regards to James Bond, Zeroes admiration, and Snakes distate and the unrealistic nature of the movies.)

        That was WAY to long.

  • http://www.facebook.com/thatfield Troy Hatfield

    Every weekend I would go to my cousins’ house to play goldeneye in their garage.  We always started off in a good mood, making fun of the kid from down the street (the worst goldeneye player).  Inevitably someone would pick Oddjob (cheating) or proximity mine themselves into a corner (cheap). 9 times out of 10 it would be one of my cousins who did so.  He and his brother would start screaming at eachother then the whole experience devolved into a fist fight.  Great times were had by all.

  • Citric

    Since Syphon Filter was mentioned, has that aged well? I’ve been tempted to get it on PSN because of the memory of playing a borrowed copy that had been driven over by a truck, and enjoying it, even though none of the FMV would play.

    • NarcolepticPanda

      Oh nuh-uh-uh. I mean, unless you’re okay with people with disturbing Lego block heads with no discernible noses. The gameplay probably hasn’t aged well either.

      • Citric

        Actually, I have inexplicable nostalgia for 32-bit graphics so that wouldn’t bug me.

        • NarcolepticPanda

          Well, look at screenshots. I mean, it really does look much worse then lots of PlayStation games. But if you played it back in the day, it might give you a good nostalagia trip.

  • Alan Fischbein

    Only ever played multi-player at my friend’s house. 
    House Rules:
    - Always “License to Kill” (i.e. one shot = kill)
    - No one may choose Odd Job (too small a target, unfair advantage).
    - Screen watching and ‘dot-hunting’ (that is, targeting newly-spawned players before they have a chance to find a weapon) are perfectly legal, since bans on them are virtually unenforceable (we tried).
    - Winner chooses next board and weapon set (no consecutive repeats)
    It was great how each of us had our own strengths and would choose weapons and tactics accordingly.
    Damn you, ‘prox / ‘plex! (Proximity mines in the Complex)
    The most reliably fun activity of my college days, no doubt.

    • LeaveTheBronx

      I can’t believe that anyone played without looking at other player’s screens.  That is an absurd prohibition and changes the game into a reflex match instead of a match of cunning.  When your opponent knows you can see what he’s doing and he can see you, it makes the ensuing battle that much more interesting.  Hell, I got so good at watching other player’s screens that on some levels I figured out their spawning patterns and could shoot them as they appeared.  (This I stopped doing because it was unsporting).

  • jarek

    My favorite things to do were to

    a) let everyone get into a firefight down the hall, stand back with an RCP and kill everyone

    b) run around and throw mines onto the body armor and ammo boxes, therefore screwing everyone in the game

    c) play 1 Hit Kills with the Sniper Rifle

    I haven’t played GE in years, only because I don’t have anyone to play it with anymore. I guess I could try to scrounge some friends together to play it but I think the interest would be minimal. =(

    What used to be fun was in The World is Not Enough, playing the Multiplayer with explosives. That was the only fun way to play the MP, everything else about it sucked.

    Maybe this Thanksgiving I can try to get my cousin (who is a huge fan) and my brother to sit down and play it, and maybe get one other person involved too.

    • stryker1121

      You were the original griefer!