007: Blood Stone
Everyone’s favorite spy James Bond is back yet again, since Quantum of Solace was released in 2008. This time Project Gotham Racing developers Bizarre Creations are behind the next installment in the Bond series. Blood Stone is a third-person typical Bond action title, that sprinkles in some stealth mechanics at times, and over the top car chases. The main story will have you battling terrorists across six different locations in an attempt to take down Pomerov, a shady businessman who is up too no good. The story isn’t going to win any awards, but it does a pretty good job at keeping things fresh, as you travel to some of the different areas that the game offers. All in all it’s your typical James Bond taking down anything and everyone who gets in his way.
The gameplay in Blood Stone from time to time can be enjoyable. One of which is the melee combat. This is a major part in how successful and how quickly you mow down your enemies. By using melee, you earn what they call Focus Aims. These work similar to Splinter Cell Convictions Mark and Execute feature. But instead of highlighting your enemy, you just hold down the Left bumper and fire away. It is very satisfying and flows really well after a couple hand to hand combat takedowns.
Another element of gameplay I found enjoyable was the car chase sequences. In certain parts of the game you will have to chase down certain people in some fancy automobiles. What makes these chases fun is the environment changes that your racing your way through. Explosions, route changes, accidents, are things you will have to navigate through to catch your bad guy. These add a nice change of pace to the third-person shooting in the game, but I just wish there was more of it. There are times were these can be frustrating though. The sudden route changes and broken roads make it fairly easy for you to lose your way and have to restart at the last checkpoint. It kind of breaks up that movie flow that sucks you in. But after you overcome that, they do work fairly well, and from the people that brought you the PGR series, I can say the cars handle smoothly.
Other than the Melee and car chases, everything else plays out as your typical third-person shooter. Enemy A.I. isn’t the worst but it’s not the greatest either. There were instances in my playthrough where the A.I. would just walk right towards me to make it very easy to just give them a quick melee, but all in all the game is an enjoyable one. Blood Stone even offers a Multiplayer componet but sadly there isn’t much that’s going to make this hang
around amongst the rest of the shooter competition. It has your standard team deathmatch and capture and hold gameplay, with a ranking up system that unlocks more weapons for you to use. I will say that the multiplayer isn’broken in anyway, nor did I have a hard time joining a room. It just doesn’t have that “kick” that you need to keep the game fresh for a long period of time.
Even though 007 Blood Stone was a good experience, it barely goes beyond the 5 hour mark. You can literally beat the game in one playthrough, or even through the course of a day. Saying that, the game is a great rental for any James Bond fan, or just a shooter fan in general. I cannot recommend to buy this title based on its short campaign experience and shallow multiplayer, but if you see it in your local video game store, give it a rent for a weekend and give it a try. You might be surprised at what you find.
[starreview tpl=46 size=’30’]