The mildly exciting on-rails truck section then has you blasting enemies from the passenger seat before you breach a room and have to take out three soldiers in bullet-time before they trigger the alarm. This is apparently an example of variety, as if they do get to the alarm you'll have to shoot some of their colleagues. As you make your way through the dam, it's a mixed bag of strafing, sniping, and at one point taking photos of a helicopter using your 'unified smartphone device', one of the rare concessions to the gadgetry of the Brosnan era.
Finally, having heroically fought your way to the top of the dam - thanks in part to a perennial white dot telling you exactly where to go - you're about to recreate the iconic bungee jump when a hairy developer puts his arm across your face and snatches the controller from your clammy paws. Presumably it's at this point that the theme tune kicks in, and the adventure is afoot.
It's a decent enough opening salvo, but the fun doesn't end there as we're also given a bash at a midpoint level, accurately described as Tank Chase. Taking control of a sturdy tank in St Petersburg, again you're chasing a white dot, hampered somewhat by a cavalcade of RPGs, kamikaze trucks and hostile helicopters. Thankfully you're packing some considerable heat yourself, and pick them off with a combination of infinite machinegun fire, missiles, and - for those pesky helicopters - uncannily accurate homing missiles. A ridiculously over-the-top affair, it's presumably chosen to demonstrate the destructible environments, and the fact that the game is about more than skulking around with a silenced Walter PPK.
More on GoldenEye 007
Review: GoldenEye 007
You know the name. You know the number.
Preview: GoldenEye 007
Shield meter decreases as your battery drains down.
Dam fine action.
Arguably nobody's really here for the single player levels anyway, and GoldenEye's seminal four-player split-screen mode is present and correct in all its knee-touching glory. Squeezed onto a seat with three other hacks, the proximity to a massive flatscreen TV does the Wii graphics no favours. (Neither does a bank of TVs showing Activision's other Bond title, Blood Stone, on 360.)
Using a version of developer Eurocom's Dead Space: Extraction engine, GoldenEye looks passable in single-player, but up close and personal it's a fitting tribute to the nineties. While eight classic characters are still there - including Jaws, Oddjob, Rosa Klebb and Scaramanga - GoldenEye 2010-style features all-new levels with a different core mechanic and control setup, such as the ability to vault cover.
In comparison to the frantic multiplayer action we're now used to, it's something of a change of pace as you casually wander around, sluggishly switch between your two weapons, and embark on extended gunfights with anyone you happen to run into. You eventually work out which of the men sat next to you is controlling which character, and proceed to gently berate them for their despicable tactics. In the real world such social occasions are increasingly rare, and GoldenEye will feature a fully-fledged eight-player online mode with all the perks, buffs and XP nonsense you might expect.
Due for release within days of some other Activision game this November, GoldenEye 007 could be a tough sell, but as executive producer Julian Widdows says, "We're not creating a nostalgia piece." It's clearly the full James Bond experience, and could be in danger of receiving the coveted Hen's Teeth award for decent first-person shooters on the Wii. Look out for the review soon, where we'll decide if they got Bond wrong...
GoldenEye 007 is due out for Wii in November.