Review: Quantum of Solace (360)


In the long history of Bond games, one has been excellent (Goldeneye) and one has been good (Everything or Nothing). To varying degrees, the rest have been garbage. EA was at the helm of the poorer titles, so many gamers were hoping Activision's takeover of the series would bring a level of quality back to 007. After all, the Bond movies seem custom-made for exciting videogame scenarios. With their first attempt, Activision wraps the narrative of Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace around the superb Call of Duty 4 engine. It sounded like a perfect match, but the end results are a bit messy.

When I first heard it would be using the COD4 engine, I thought there was no way they could mess this up. The engine is absolutely perfect for FPS gameplay, but I started getting concerned when I heard they'd be adding third-person elements to the mix. As I expected, they're jarring and detract from the overall experience. The cover system isn't awful, but the melee attacks are unnecessary. A simple COD-esque stab, punch, or pistol-whip would suffice, but instead we get an awkward "zoom out, look at Daniel Craig doing an ugly headbutt" third-person view.

Gunplay is unsatisfying, and there's some seriously odd physics when it comes to dead enemies. More often than not, I would shoot an enemy that was behind cover, and his body would then awkwardly flail OVER the cover he was behind, basically falling in the direction the bullet came from.

Most games based on movies have to exercise their fair share of creative liberty, but Quantum of Solace gets downright ridiculous. Hey, remember that scene in Casino Royale where Bond went into the Bodies exhibit with guns blaring, killing dozens of terrorists that were standing next to exploding barrels? No? Maybe that's because the scene simply involved him quietly following his target, stabbing him stealthily, and leaving. I understand that this needs to be done occasionally, but the scenes in the game and the movies differ wildly.

If you were hoping for another fantastic Bond multiplayer experience a la Goldeneye, don't look here. Also, it may run on the Call of Duty engine but it still manages to make it feel generic. I had trouble finding matches already, and the game has only been out a couple of weeks.

Quantum of Solace is a very generic FPS, which is a shame considering it could have been much better. It has the tested Call of Duty 4 engine behind it, and the fantastic Daniel Craig movies to go off of, but it ruins both of these opportunities.

Graphics: 7.0

Sound: 5.5

First Play: 6.5

Replay value: 5.0

Gameplay: 6.5

Overall: 6.7


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