EA may be making good on its promise to bring James Bond back in
true form on the PS2. Agent Under Fire looks to be the best 007 game since Goldeneye, and
a lot of information has been released since Sarahs enticing E3 preview.
The story of Agent Under Fire takes 007 on an all-new adventure,
written exclusively for this title, complete with brand new cast of evil geniuses and
beautiful Bond Girls. From what I can piece together, MI6 is investigating the criminal
activities of the Identicon Corporation and its shady CEO, Nigel Bloch. In his employ are
Reginald Griffin, a British diplomat and token turn-coat; Carla the Jackal, a hired thief;
and the evil twins, Bebe and Bella, who are experts in martial arts and firearms, and will
no doubt make 007s job um
The game includes 12 missions and various exotic locals. Players
will have to infiltrate Identicons Hong Kong headquarters in order to rescue fellow
agent Zoe Nightshade and sneak through the British embassy in Romania to retrieve computer
files without harming the guards. Other locales include the Swiss Alps and the
South China Sea.
The gameplay incorporates elements of both a traditional FPS and a
driving game. The driving scenarios in the game will have you navigating cities in a
heated chase as well as participating in vehicle weapon combat. Vehicles include an Aston
Martin DB5, a BMW 750iL, and a BMW Z8, all of which have been given a once over by Q.
Speaking of Q, what would 007 be without his gadgets? Expect to make ample use of items
like the hidden camera, the personal laser, and the Q Clawa small cell-phone looking
item that fires a grappling line and pulls 007 up to otherwise unreachable locations. The
arsenal boasts a .44 Magnum IAC Defender, a Mac-10, an M-16/Grenade Launcher combo, a
sniper rifle, dart gun, and of course, the ever trusty Wolfram PK2 with silencer, among
others. Up to four players can take part in various multiplayer competitions, although at
this point it is unclear if they include driving options.
The graphics look top notch, perhaps the best I have seen in a
PS2 FPS so far. Characters and backgrounds are rich in detail and special effects such as
explosions look terrific. In the kind of strange but cool department: the 007 of Agent
Under Fire is not a clumsy rendering of one of the many actors who have played him in the
films, but rather an all new virtual actor of sorts who is unique, but distinctively
James Bond. In the game movies that I have seen, the voice acting has been very
well done, certainly better than we have come to expect.
I hate to sound obsequious, but the only apparent downside to this
title is that it may be overly ambitious. You have to admit, it will take just the right
balance of game play to pull off both the FPS and driving elements in the same game,
without one or the other becoming tiresome or seeming out of place. But everything appears
to be coming together nicely. For screenshots, videos, and even more details weekly, check
out EAs Agent Under Fire website at www.007.ea.com.