If nothing else, 007 Blood Stone
should go down in history as a cautionary tale of why movie-based games struggle in the marketplace. Blood Stone
was originally conceived as the plot for the project "Bond 23" movie before financial woes forced the cancellation of the film. 007 Blood Stone
the game feels like the lost script for the film and the resulting game feels very much like your average videogame tie-in, except that it has nothing to tie into!
So the plot for 007 Blood Stone follows all the beats of an actual James Bond movie. The globetrotting super spy will thwart terrorist groups attacking the G20 summit in Athens, track down kidnapped scholars, and meet lovely ladies on his top-secret excursions. The problem is that many of the locations and transitions feel disjointed. One minute you are fighting off thugs in the Roman Colosseum, then chasing suspects through a busy Monaco street before being captured and tortured in a Burmese prison camp. Obviously, you will have high-tech gadgets at your disposal while you sleuth around ritzy hotels, but I found I kept thinking the same complaint throughout the whole journey; namely that 007 Blood Stone tries to do too much and ultimately comes across as a rather average experience.
Essentially a third-person game roughly 60% of the time, 007 Blood Stone lets you navigate Bond through level after level dispatching bad guys and defusing bombs in much the same way you would expect modern action titles to allow. However, instead of sticking to this tried and true formula, 007 Blood Stone forces you to do more than just shoot your gun off at the henchmen. Some levels are solely focused on stealth, requiring you to play in the shadows and wait for the perfect moment to strike. Other levels become a shooting gallery where you simply have to shoot the cronies before they shoot you. Yet another level is solely dedicated to driving a fancy sports car through a high-traffic street. Sure, it sounds great on paper, but every gameplay model suffers from poor direction and a lackadaisical attitude. The shooting is rough, the sneaking is unforgiving, and the driving is abysmal. Just about the only improvement to be had are the spy-centric mini-games like hacking a safe or defusing bombs. They are quick and fun and the best part is that if you fail, it lets you start over immediately.
If beating the single player story left you wanting more, there is also a multiplayer mode. Limited only to competitive match types like "Capture the Flag" and "Deathmatch," the local wireless connectivity of the DS will be the only way for anyone to enjoy the promised 6 player matches. I attempted to go online and couldn't find a single game until I played with a friend of mine in the same room. The match types and weapons are pretty standard, but overall there isn't anything special waiting to be discovered online.