Rare’s GoldenEye 007 for the N64 needs no introduction, and now it’s possible to revisit the game in a more modern form. This week, a ROM of a canceled 2007 Xbox 360 remaster of the game appeared online, allowing those with a PC to play it using an emulator. According to VGC (via Polygon), the leaked ROM includes the game’s entire single-player campaign, as well as its multiplayer component. It also allows players to seamlessly toggle between the remaster’s enhanced textures and effects and the original’s blocky N64 graphics.
Be sure to press RB when playing Goldeneye XBLA pic.twitter.com/xBa7Qb9JSk
— Andi Hamilton (@andihero) February 3, 2021
The ROM made its way online shortly after a YouTube channel named Graslu00 uploaded a two-hour video on the remaster. We’ve seen bits and pieces of the game in the years since news of its existence first came out in 2008, but that video was our best look at it to date. The closest we’ve gotten to a proper GoldenEye 007 rerelease since then was Activision’s 2010 remake of the game, which replaced Pierce Brosnan with Daniel Craig — so, you know, not exactly a faithful recreation of the original.
As for why Microsoft never released the game, it all comes to all the rights holders that were involved with the project. “The main reason it didn’t happen was because there were too many stakeholders. Microsoft, Nintendo and [Bond rights-holder] EON could never agree on terms, and that’s before you even start to consider getting all the original movie actors to agree to have their likenesses used again,” Grant Kirkhope, who composed the music for the original game, told VGC. “It would’ve cost a lot of money to get it done and because of that the project probably wouldn’t have been financially viable.”