Treyarch have clearly done some research into the Bond series. You can tell because Quantum of Solace manages the impressive feat of being, quite literally, based on a different Bond film. In simple mathematical terms: two-thirds Casino Royale + one-third QoS = one QoS shooter. A few QoS missions to get you started, then ten Casino Royale missions in a row, before a single QoS level to finish you off. You almost suspect it’s a huge gag.
Is it a big deal? Well, seeing as the only reason people buy substandard licensed crap is because of the license, you do wonder if Activision and Treyarch have ended up with a rawer deal than they might have expected. It certainly speaks volumes about how co-operative the movie chaps were with Treyarch’s need to, you know, have a basic clue about what would happen in the new movie. “Bond is back”, the box blurb reads, when the truth would have been “Here’s some old Bond with a few teasers from the new film”.
Anyway, let’s hope they get a few angry letters. And move on, because QoS has one more big surprise in store. It’s not substandard crap. Standard, yes, and with a massive case of tunnel vision in its level design, but also a solid shooter with good set-pieces, decent AI and even the odd clever idea. Perhaps there’s a good reason for that, because if ever there was an engine that forced you to make a particular type of game, it must be the Call of Duty engine.
And this is CoD in a tux. Unfortunately, when the real James Bond stands up it’s Treyarch’s CoD in a tux rather than Infinity Ward’s. Dalton instead of Connery. And you know Timmy would get murdered if that ever happened. The first level plonks you in a mansion garden. Rather pretty, maybe a bit baroque on the railings, you think. Probably new money. Then a couple of bad men pop up from behind a bush and start shooting at you. This is generally what happens to videogame secret agents.