This year, we’re celebrating fifty years of James Bond on film. You can now buy every single film on Blu-Ray (for the first time ever) in an enormous set (with room for the upcoming Skyfall) or you can play some missions from some of the best films in the upcoming 007 Legends video game from developer Eurocom and publisher Activision.
In 007 Legends, you’ll play one mission from each of the six actors’ time as the character. (Though you’ll play only as the Daniel Craig era Bond.) The movies included are Goldfinger, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Moonraker, License to Kill and Die Another Day. (Skyfall’s mission will be released as downloadable content for free later after the movie comes out November 9.)
007 Legends is out next week, October 16, for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, November 2 for Microsoft Windows and December 4 for the upcoming Wii U.
To learn why those movies were specifically chosen for the game, why Daniel Craig’s Bond is the one featured and what else fans can expect in the game, I recently spoke with Dino Verano, Associate Producer for the title, over email.
For those who aren't familiar with 007 Legends, tell us what the game is all about.
As many are aware, this year is a very important year for the James Bond franchise as it marks the 50th anniversary for James Bond in film. What better way to celebrate and commemorate this year by releasing a game where players can relive some of the most memorable moments from the James Bond legacy.
We’ve worked closely with EON Productions and Danjaq, as well as writer Bruce Feirstein, to select five classic films that will be a part of 007 Legends. The five classic films will be tied together with an over-arching story lin and will be punctuated by the release of a sixth movie-inspired mission based on the upcoming feature film Skyfall, which will be released as free downloadable content shortly after the movie’s US debut in November.
007 Legends is mostly first-person shooter gameplay, but between action sections, players will also get to experience some very cool Bond moments in an array of different gameplay segments including car chases, skiing, helicopters and even a foray into outer space. All of this, tied together with some spectacular cinematics, that include voice talent from the original films, will make for a truly memorable and unique experience of the Bond universe.
Each of the missions is from one of the movies made by each of the different six Bond actors. How did you go about choosing some movies over others? (I was a bit surprised to see Die Another Day over GoldenEye for instance.)
Numerous factors went into choosing the films for 007 Legends.
First off, we wanted to have a movie for each actor that has played Bond over the years. This narrows it down a bit since George Lazenby was only in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, and in Brosnan’s case, both GoldenEye and The World is Not Enough had already been made into video games.
From there, we take into account movies that have iconic moments that lend themselves well to gameplay, and unique vistas that give us a variety of visual elements.
Die Another Day, for example, was chosen for items such as the Ice Palace and Bio Domes that looked great and felt like unique environments within the game; also it had the opportunity for a great vehicle segment in the car-chase/duel sequence with Zao.
You play the entire game as the Daniel Craig Bond, however. Why make the decision not to use each era's Bond? And how did you settle on Daniel Craig's version of the character?
The producers for the films have been working hard to reboot Bond into Daniel Craig’s version as the darker, grittier, more immediate and physical Bond. We wanted to fully support them in their efforts, as well as have 007 Legends feel like a more modern, contemporary piece by having Daniel Craig be Bond throughout.
Having Daniel throughout also helps tie the narrative together into one cohesive piece; to dispel a myth that the name “James Bond” and “007” is just a code name given to MI6’s top agent, there is only ever one Bond and Daniel Craig is today’s Bond.
Talk to me about some of the gadgets players will get to use in the game. What's your favorite?
There will be several gadgets that Bond will have access to through the course of the game and will be available for his use at all times.
Bond’s smartphone is a handy tool that has multiple view modes. It is capable of hacking computers, taking pictures to send as intel to MI6 and also it is able to detect hazardous materials as well as finger prints and traces of evidence, which come in handy for your typical espionage scenario.
Bond’s wristwatch has a built-in radar ping, which maps out enemies around corners, through walls and even between floors—very handy for sneaking about and subduing enemies stealthily. It is also equipped with an EMP laser that can overload and scramble certain electrical devices.
My personal favorite is the dart gun. It’s cleverly disguised as a fountain tip pen and can hold several types of darts. You can use tranquilizer darts to covertly put enemies (and the occasional scientist or bystander) to sleep quietly. There are also shock darts that can be used to put multiple enemies out at once with a surge of electricity. My absolute favorite is the distraction dart. This dart can be fired against walls, floors, etc., and emits a noise that will cause your unsuspecting victims to go and inspect it. I love using this to separate patrolling guards, lure prey into dark areas where I can subdue them or if I just feel like having a laugh from sending the hapless henchmen right where I’ve placed a mine (sounds a bit sadistic, yes, but it’s just a video game).
I think I read that Skyfall will be available as DLC. If the game does well, could we potentially expect other "movies" to get released as DLC?
Correct, Skyfall will indeed be available as FREE downloadable content shortly after the film launches in the US.
There are currently no plans to release additional movies as downloadable content.
How much of the gameplay will involve cover-based shooting versus driving a car versus stealth? Are their multiple ways to solve a situation (e.g. go in stealthily versus go in hard, guns blazing?)
Majority of the game is first-person shooter, however, there will be vehicle sections strung throughout; expect one or two per movie.
As far as cover based vs. stealth, each level will have some of both. Sometimes there is no stealth option, and sometimes stealth is required; however the majority of the game will give the player the option to stealth until the alarm is raised and reinforcements are called in for a firefight.
I never, ever play multiplayer. Why should I play it in 007 Legends? What are some of the modes players can expect?
Well, if you’re not a fan of the online multplayer experience, 007 Legends gives you a chance to relive the days of yore and actually play the game in the same room as three of your friends, enemies or frenemies with the four-player split-screen multiplayer.
Fans can expect a couple standards such as Conflict (death match) and Team Conflict (team death match), as well as the newest game mode “Legends” where players can play as their favorite characters from the Bond franchise, each with their own unique abilities.
Also making a comeback this year is the “Golden Gun” game mode, where the almighty Golden Gun is located somewhere in the level for players to pick up. Careful though, the Golden Gun is a one-shot kill but only has one bullet in the chamber, which makes it difficult to fend off the hordes of other players that will be hunting you down to take it from you.
Who do you think is going to be the ideal audience for this game? Bond fanatics who will love playing some of their favorite movies in a game for the first time? Or someone who isn't as well versed in Bond lore?
Both! I think that 007 Legends is a great opportunity for Bond fanatics to relive some of their favorite movie moments, but is also a great chance for someone who isn’t familiar with the history of the Bond franchise to see it first-hand.
What are some of the main differences fans can expect if they choose to play the game on the upcoming Wii U?
The Wii U gamepad will allow for some unique ways to manage your inventory, interact with mini-games and puzzles, as well as allow for a couple unique split-screen game modes.
Anything else you'd like to tell fans?
007 Legends will be available for PS3 and X360 on October 16th and following that will be available on PC and Wii U. Whether you have always been a Bond fan or have just recently joined-in on the Bond franchise, 007 Legends is a great way for you to either relive or experience some of the most iconic moments in Bond history for the first time.