007 Legends preview

By John Keefer, Jun 05, 2012 2:00pm PDT

QUICKTAKE: 007 Legends reboots the classic Bond films to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 007 franchise, chaining five Bond films together as individual multi-objective missions. Developer Eurocom has cast Daniel Craig in the lead role, however, with no plans of unlocks for Roger Moore of Sean Connery. A sixth mission will be available as DLC soon after the game launches in October.

THE DEMO: My behind-closed doors demo at Activision featured associate producer Dino Verana taking us on a trip through the first mission in the game, Moonraker, based on the 1979 film in which James Bond is tasked with stopping Hugo Drax from launching shuttles that endanger the space programs of Russia and the United States. The goal here was to infiltrate Drax's base in the Amazon, and although you could take a head-on approach, stealth is suggested to avoid alerting the heavier security forces in the base.

Verana used traditional cover and fire techniques, as well as stealth, tranquilizer darts and a silencer, to take out wandering guards without being scene to get to his first objective. As with any Bond game, gadgets are part of the fun and in this case a EMP scanner in a smart phone can be used track electric current to aid in disabling some electronic devices such as security cameras. Bond's watch also acts as a sort of radar, pinging the area to reveal enemy targets on the game's minimap.

Each mission will have numerous objectives, and while players can make a direct line to complete each one, there is nothing stopping the player from exploring the area and taking on any enemy he sees. Misdirection can also be used to distract guards so the player can sneak past. It was noted that players in single-player mode can gain experience points throughout the various missions to use for various upgrades.

In one scene, however, Verana was spotted an then proceeded to take out the responding security with weapons he picked up from the fallen bodies. Later in the mission, stealth was not an option and an all-out firefight ensued as the player must make it to a helicopter to get to the next stage of the mission. Bond will occasionally have characters who tag along with him, in this case Holly Goodhead, but they are more than capable of taking care of themselves.

The demo ended with a massive helicopter crash and Bond saving Goodhead from falling to her death, before the two take off to stop the Shuttle launch.

DETAILS: Eurocom's reboot of the franchise puts Daniel Craig in the leading role. Some may be disappointed in not being able play Roger Moore or Sean Connery, but it was a conscious decision aimed at focusing on the current Bond actor, and to have a darker feel to the game.

The premise of the story is that Craig's Bond is unconscious and floating in the water, with little description as to why, but the game is set up to use the missions as a series of flashbacks to get to present day and why Bond is in the predicament he is in.

The game will offer four-player split-screen mode as in previous games with traditional bad guys players have come to expect in the Bond games.

Eurocom is playing coy with support for future films as DLC, but they have acknowledged that the upcoming Bond film Skyfall will be available as a free DLC mission soon after the game releases on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on Oct. 16 this year.

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