Friends, the moment has come: the most influential first-person shooter in gaming history* has transcended the limitations of a single screen. Yes, GoldenEye 007 for Nintendo 64 can now be played without screen fraud because a british museum has rigged $10,000 worth of hardware to give each player their own screen† It’s all in celebration of the game’s 25th anniversary.
As my former colleague Andrew Liszewski at Gizmodo points out that this would radically change the experience of one of the greatest multiplayer games of all time, one that had you and three friends huddle around a large, boxy television when the game debuted 25 years ago.
We agree on that. But this?
However, multiplayer on a console before everything was connected to the internet was not perfect. Four players had to share the same screen, eliminating some FPS strategies like finding a secret place to camp and snipe at opponents.
Yes, Golden EyeOn-screen cheating eliminated camping and sniping – but that was a damn good thing in a single joystick shooter where you can barely turn around and aim freely as you move. Not to mention those situations where a sniper armed with a sighted AR33 zooms in on a sticky mine placed somewhere that you can’t possibly see if you turn the corner, and you’re instantly blown to the kingdom.
Screen fraud has made so many Golden Eye tricks acceptable, because even if you weren’t actively peeking at the other corners of the TV to see exactly what your opponents were doing, you’d know they were setting a trap when those corners stopped moving. I’ve played Golden Eye‘s unofficial PC multiplayer remake, and it just isn’t the same, with all the camping and sniping that the OG developers didn’t have to factor in when building a game for Nintendo.
Granted, some of these are sour grapes! I’d jump at the chance to try if I could magically teleport to the Center for Computing History in Cambridge this weekend; it’s part of what sounds like a incredible exhibition, which may also feature a fully playable version of the canceled GoldenEye Remastered for the Xbox 360.
Hopefully the museum also preserves how it used to be actually play Golden Eye also on a nintendo 64.
By the way, if you’re nostalgic for on-screen trickery, I’d also highly recommend trying it Screen cheat the pc game, where you to have to screen cheat because every player is invisible.
*you know, besides Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, Quake, Half-Life and Counter-Strike.