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Watch a Full 'GoldenEye 007' Xbox Series X Livestream

As promised last Wednesday, the remastered version of GOLDENEYE 007 for Nintendo 64 was released today for Xbox Game Pass and Nintendo Switch users. For those who don't have the appropiate hardware to play this version, Graslu00 has streamed the whole Xbox Series X adaptation of the game. Watch it below:

Stop Getting GoldenEye Wrong!

Ever since this release was announced last September, many aficionados noticed things that that didn't fit quite well with the idea of a remaster for modern consoles – or at least for what GOLDENEYE 007 fans were expecting for a "better looking" version of the game. The text and heads-up display looked blurry and blocky as if carelessly stretched and enlarged, something that didn't happen in emulated ROMs. Likewise, while a 16:9 widescreen version was promised for this release, they are giving us an option the Nintendo 64 version already have. To bring something new to the table in this area would be adapting the gunbarrel animation, intro and pause menu to widescreen, like the cancelled XBLA version offered. Sadly, the Xbox Series X release sticks to the 4:3 full screen format. Now that the game is out, the livestream confirms that not only these things prevailed, but some other questionable things were found as well.

The game now begins with some extra logos: Xbox Game Studios, Code Mystics and MGM/EON Productions (so, do you like the game after all, Babs?). After the BBFC-like screen, we move to the gunbarrel, intro and the classic main menu with the four passports. The rendering mistakes begin here, when the coat of arms on each passport is barely noticeable. The music sounds compressed like in the original N64 game, yet the developers back then had the excuse of hardware limitations that don't apply to a 2020 console. Even more so, pieces like Grant Kirkhope's "watch" theme seemed to lack some characteristic instruments. Kirkhope and his fellow composer Graeme Norgate were aware of this, although other users reported that the missing sound was there, but barely perceptible.

While a "consistent frame-rate" was promised, this new version runs at 30 frames per second, just like the original from 1997. At times, non-playable characters shot at close range didn't display the usual blood stains over their bodies, but the glitch was quickly solved with a system restart. What was surprising at first was the lack of the promised achievements. Graslu00 didn't have any real time announcement of them and it looked like they were scrapped without notice. Fortunately, he found them on his user dashboard later, but for some reason the expected pop-up announcing its completion wasn't triggered at the moment.

The Xbox controller seemed to be a bit of a problem as well: not only aiming seems to be difficult and imprecise, but strafing was almost impossible. The trick of pressing A+B to detonate a Remote Mine on the air was given a harder combination: now the player had to press A+Y. It appears the N64 controller wasn't so bad after all (realistically, it was never bad).

All these complaints may be percieved as an unnecessary lambasting of what should be –and it still is– a celebration, like the return of GOLDENEYE 007. However, when it comes to a legendary video game that people have played and replayed after more than two decades in different formats, more passion and love should have been put on this remaster. Let's not forget that as much as the corporations would like to forget about it, emulators are out there and so the game files for both the N64 game and its cancelled XBLA recreation in high-definition, which is much closer to what GOLDENEYE fans expected. No matter if you are against emulation, you still compete with it. And if you compete with something that is obtainable for free, you'd surely like to give your clients something better and exclusive, considering that they are paying for it. Taking into account that the superiority of the emulated N64 version was pointed out long before official remaster was out, something could have been done to improve the look of the Xbox Series X remaster.

On the bright side, it's quite positive to see the hype for GOLDENEYE 007 everywhere in social media. That alone is worth of celebration.

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