Two major errors have been made with this game. The first is that they've called it GoldenEye. This is because the original was such a cherished game. Rare's N64 original was one of the greatest games ever made, so unless the 'sequel' is going to match it or better, why risk the comparison?
The other big mistake is giving the lead character a golden eye - a golden... wait for it... eye. A golden... frickin'... eye. The golden eye in the film GoldenEye was actually a big satellite, so where this literal golden eye has come from we don't know. Sure, The Man With the Golden Gun did actually have one, but Goldfinger didn't have a golden finger, no one had balls of thunder and Octopussy didn't have eight cats! Just what was the thought process?
So, we're off to a bad start with the choice of name and concept. Now the plot. The game is set in some Bond parallel universe where Dr. No is at war with Auric Goldfinger, and each have an all-star Bond villain team supporting them. You control an M16 agent that's expelled from Her Majesty's Secret Service and becomes a Rogue Agent on Goldfinger's side. Oh, and you've got a golden eye that's been fitted by The Man With The Golden Gun, who's working with Goldfinger - after Dr. No shot the healthy one out. Honestly, you couldn't make it up. Well, actually someone has, and now they're laughing at us while lying on a bed of money.
Anyway, ignoring the noise of Ian Flemming spinning in his grave, we got to grips with a fairly competent shoot-'em-up. In fact, there's no doubt that this game can be enjoyed.
Unfortunately, however, if you compare it to Halo 2, Killzone and Metroid Prime, it curls into a ball to protect itself. This is linear like a ladder. Some routes are marked out with shin-high boxes that you can't jump over... because you can't jump.
The one aspect that could elevate the game above average are the magical GoldenEye powers, but most of them are made redundant if you've got a good enough gun. It's almost as though EA, upon seeing Master Chief's helmet (ahem) and Samus' visor, decided they could do with some pretty patterns on the screen.
While there's nothing horrifically wrong with the game, it feels like a step back for EA's development of the Bond license. While Everything Or Nothing wasn't perfect, it felt like they'd finally claimed Bond as their own and put the GoldenEye ghost to rest by making the game a third-person spectacular. But rather than expanding on that, they've dredged the whole thing up again! They must be gluttons for punishment.