James Bond: Quantum of Solace review
Quantum of Disappointment
The James Bond movie franchise has been nothing short of spectacular over the past 22 movies seen on the silver screen, and with great movies, games are surely to follow in their footpaths, or at least you'd consider it. It's understandable that movie tie-in games have that pressure to be released with sound quality of gaming which accurately imitates it's movie counterpart, but as most common with these movie license games, this leads to their demise. Quantum on Solace for the Playstation 2® is unfortunately one of the key examples of this.
Levels in the game are to a satisfactory standard. Although relatively large, they are far too restrictive, meaning that even when an attempt at creating a 'free-roaming' level has been made (Cities for example), there is still only one set path Bond must traverse in order to progress. In other words, levels are very predictable. Texturing on objects such as boxes, guns, walls and doors have been kept to a basic standard of quality, and really have nothing to gloat about.
The character graphics look horrible to say the least. Daniel Crag's James Bond looks like he has oddly like he has down syndrome. Olga Kurylenko's Camille Montes looks like she is a decrepit old woman (hardly what she should look like). Bond's clothing is varied and gives a natural feel to his character, but amidst in the action it looks stretched and unappealing, as if to say that it it was painted onto Bond's own body.
The game seems to follow in the footsteps of most movie license games, with the attempt to replicate movie quality graphics, but in doing so fail very noticeably. The game's graphics look simply rushed and overlooked.
The soundtrack seems to be very plain. Not at all memorable and at times cut off by in-game action and other gameplay scenes. Unfortunately, it plays such as small role overall in the game that there's hardly anything at all to mention about it.
Sound effects of guns are pretty good. Weapons tend to have the sharp booming sound which pleases the ears. Voices on the other hand aren't very noticeable at times, and become somewhat annoying as they interrupt your gameplay right in the middle of a gunfight.
The overall gameplay seems horribly rushed and it seems that very little attention was paid to the principles of action games. Action can get very repetitive, following the very successful yet completely repetitive process. Take cover, fire, rinse and repeat. Alternatively, running in guns blazing creates an even simpler experience with enemies falling over rather easily. The lack of blood makes these action scenes uninteresting and unrealistic and takes away that essence of 'Action' we've all come to enjoy.
The controls are very stiff and very limited, in some odd cases your character may do unexpected things or even nothing at all. Even trying to force your character up a ladder or through a door can become a pain. Even more so, switching cover (moving to a new place to take cover) makes Bond unrealistically and somewhat disappointingly slide several meters to another wall or waist-high object. It all looks terrible to be honest.
'Interactive Scenes' are hardly what can be deemed as interactive. Having to push a certain button at an appropriate time during a choreographed action sequence can yield some enjoyment, but with Quantum of Solace you'd expect a much larger range of opportunities. Throughout the entire game, only several moments (Definitely less than 5) allow the player to experience a button sequenced scene, but even then these scenes only allow 2 or 3 chances of button moments which makes you wonder why they even chose to implement this feature in the first place.
There are small moments of frustration and uncertainty where you're lost in gameplay and have no clue as to how to progress further. These situations cannot be easily resolved either, as there are no hints, tips or even accurately listed objectives which can provide helpful insight into what is needed. It's moments like these where you'll feel almost compelled to quit the game and pursue it another day.
As mentioned before, levels are far too short. As a matter of fact, the entire game is too short. It's quite easily that you can finish the entire game in as little as a day, even less if you felt committed to play through this atrocity.
What Eurocom got right:
Third Person Mechanics
What Eurocom need to fix:
(Summarised: Almost everything)
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