Blood Stone promises a brand new Bond adventure whilst MGM try to get funding to finish their so-far-doomed 3rd Daniel Craig Bond movie. This tale of espionage revolves around a UK top secret biochemical that’s fallen into the wrong hands and so Bond has to investigate where it is and gets into all sorts of bother in the process.
Most of this bother revolves around duck and cover shooting as we’ve seen done to great effect in Gears of War and Uncharted, and some short driving sections that should be good seeing as Bizarre Creations developed the game, the same team behind MSR and Project Gotham Racing.
So first, to the combat. Whilst it feels very derivative they’ve actually got some things very right here. There’s just the right amount of ‘stickiness’ as Bond sidles up against walls and crates and you can tap the cover button again to run to new cover or hold it to move round an object. There’s also a very satisfying close-range melee attack which will down an enemy Daniel Craig-stylee with a few choice karate chops to the neck or a kick in the chin. Doing these moves also earn you focus points which let you take down enemies with a single auto-aimed shot akin to Splinter Cell Conviction.
There’s also some secret documents and objects to scan and hacking to be done with Bond’s uber-powerful smartphone but these only amount to simple button combination presses and don’t really add to the gameplay experience.
When you’re rushing over rooftops or through mineshafts smacking people in the face and shooting emerging enemies with focus shots it all gets very exciting. It’s a pity then that the driving sections don’t work as well. They all revolve around chasing someone in a car or boat but you can’t actually catch up to them until the game lets you and if you hit an obstacle in your way it’s usually game over and a swift return to your last checkpoint. You rely less on skill in these parts and more on memory.
Presentation’s also a mixed bag. Joss Stone provides the soundtrack and along with a very tasty opening credit scene it stands up alongside other real Bond themes. However, Judi Dench’s M character model looks like Skeletor from He-Man. I’m still trying to work out if Craig’s model is good or not as he does have a head that resembles a Nik-Nak in real life anyway.
So in all Blood Stone is an enjoyable game that does have some great ‘Bond moments’ to get your adrenaline pumping if you play it on Agent difficulty. Play it on any difficulty below that and it’s a breeze where you won’t need to find cover and you’ll miss out on some of those afore-mentioned Bond moments. In my opinion it’s actually better than Splinter Cell Conviction so I’m downgrading my review of Splinter Cell Conviction to seven out of ten and giving this the same score to reflect its own flaws. Blood Stone gets 7 out of 10.
Get Blood Stone now
New: Buy Blood Stone from Amazon.com