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Updated Goldeneye Article

Goldeneye 007 for the Nintendo 64 video game console is without a doubt the best video game ever created. The game truly defined what a First Person Shooter (FPS) should be. Before Goldeneye, few people had enjoyed the existing multiplayer shooters, which included the original Quake, Duke Nukem, and other such games. While these previous games were fun, none of them matched the caliber of gameplay, smoothness, and just plain fun that Goldeneye had. In a way, Goldeneye is like the original Super Mario Brothers. Without that game, the video game industry would not be where it is today. Take away Goldeneye, while less dramatic, still takes away a HUGE part of video game history. Goldeneye is the sixth best selling game from 1995 to the present, behind Super Mario 64, GTA 3, GTA: Vice City,and Pokemon Yellow and Blue. It is the second best selling game of its generation behind Mario.  Goldeneye truly established Rare as an elite developer, and immensely helped Nintendo get through the N64’s lifespan. 

Now I will explain why Perfect Dark sucks. First off, it took them almost three years to remake what was pretty much the same game. They added bots, slightly editable characters, weapons, and a few levels. WOW! What big additions! The game had almost no storyline at all and suffered from EXTREME slowdown without the memory booster, which was sold separately. To its credit, it does have bots, which is one reason I have it, in order to practice my Goldeneye skills when I am by myself (in case any of you are wondering).

In addition, when Perfect Dark came out, other games previously released included Soul Calibur, Super Smash Brothers, and some of Sega’s 2K sports games, among other amazing Dreamcast, N64, Saturn, and PS1 games. With all these games already out, one begins to wonder how Perfect Dark scores so highly, six months AFTER Soul Calibur's release. The game scored tens in gameplay (which was rehashed from Goldeneye) and graphics (which were marginally improved over Goldeneye’s). Also, Perfect Dark slowed down many times more than Goldeneye, even if it had the recommended memory boost. Try playing it with the normal memory and it is nearly unplayable. 

Yes, Perfect Dark did add some cool things, but it ultimately does not make the game more enjoyable in my opinion. Bots, for example, were either stupid and easy to kill, or very cheap and impossible opponents. When you play with four players, which is the best type of game, the bots ruin the gameplay by destroying the frame rate. The new game modes, such as King of the Hill (which was just a different colored room), are useless with bots. With the normal bots, they do not even look for the hill, so you are forced to play with the amazing, super-bots. The bots, voice acting, new characters, new weapons, firing range, in-game weapon select, and co-op/counter-op are good additions, but ultimately hurt the strongest part of Goldeneye, the multiplayer.

Perfect Dark is really more of an expansion, but many fail to see this. If the two games were released for the PC, Perfect Dark would definitely be seen as an expansion. I do not see how after about 3 years, people still somehow loved PD as much as Goldeneye. I do not see how its graphics score was as high as it was. If PS2 games suffer now in reviews because of graphical shortcomings, why didn't PD?

Goldeneye has a great single player and a classic Bond story. The controls are not overly complicated, and fit the controller perfectly. The game had great graphics and sound for 1997. Above all, however, it all comes down to the unlimited replay value, and an amazing multiplayer mode, which you can play forever and still have fun.

Goldeneye for N64 is and will always be the best FPS of all time. Not only was it innovative and fun to play, but the graphics and sound were outstanding for its time. There is nothing (feasible, throw online play out the window, its '97) at all that could make that game better than it already is. With game shark codes and hacks still being released by many, the game continues to grow, 8 years after its release. I bet $100 billion that the same could not be said about any other FPS of this generation 8 years from its release. People will move on and play Halo 3, or Quake 4. Perfect Dark Zero will diminish the original's reputation. There will never be another Goldeneye.

In the end, Goldeneye is just a much more fun experience. While other games may age over time and become less enjoyable to play, Goldeneye has retained its value for over eight years, and it will continue to maintain that enjoyable experience. How many other games will you play eight years after they come out? Classic arcade games, 8, and 16-bit games definitely. But what about the more current generations? There aren’t many people playing PS1 games right now. Even the Sega Dreamcast, a current generation game system, has been forgotten by many people, even though Sega has not fully stopped their support of it. Who will play Halo when Halo 2 or 3 is out? Who will play GTA 3 when San Andreas or GTA 4 is out? Not to downplay these games and their influence (especially GTA), but I do not see myself playing Halo over Halo 3 in a few years. 

Sega Smash Pack

I recently read the introduction for the Dreamcast's Sega Smash Pack, and it was very poignant and representative of the Dreamcast itself.
" Truly, there are more active gamers in the world today than at any other time in the history of our beloved pastime. And while many claim to know what gaming is all about, most have just jumped on the bandwagon of the world’s most dynamic form of entertainment. Thus, in the new realm of online gaming, 128-bit processes, true 3D graphics, and blazing frame rates, we often find ourselves missing something. Strangely, that “something” can be hard to identify or describe. The games of today are undoubtedly brilliant works of art created though a combination of ridiculously long hours, daily dedication, and teams of highly skilled artists, designers, programmers, and producers, but amid all this advancement, things are sometimes forgotten. Sega, always eager to push the envelope of technology and creativity, has made great strides over the years to accomplish one invariable goal: to produce the highest quality video entertainment the world over. 

 Within this collection of games, you will bear witness to this goal as evidenced by the numerous game titles that exist on this one disc. For those of you new to these classics, you’re in for an even more profound experience: the discovery of gaming’s true essence: the undeniable satisfaction that goes a long with finely-tuned gameplay, brilliant game design, and visionary characters. Welcome to the first installment of Sega’s Smash Pack series: games that play as well today as the first day they were released to the public, games that make gamers proud to be gamers—profound games that instantly remind us why we ever started playing games in the first place."

I think this really speaks for Sega and their games. They have that "something" that just makes you want to play them all the time. Probably the best example I can think of is Pong. The graphics suck, gameplay is extremely simple, sound is nearly nonexistent, and there is only one level. Why do people keep playing this game then? It's that "something". It's not even just the fun factor, because wouldn't that have worn out years ago? Unexplainable, yet known to all.