From Russia with Love is a video game featuring Ian Fleming's secret agent, James Bond developed by Electronic Arts and released on November 1, 2005 in North America. The game is based on the 1957 novel and the 1963 film of the same name. The game follows the storyline of the book and film, albeit adding in new scenes to make the game more action-oriented, as well as changing the affiliation of the main villains. Additionally, it features many elements of earlier Bond films to recreate the feel of the era such as the jet pack from Thunderball (1965) and the Aston Martin DB5 that debuted in Goldfinger (1964). From Russia with Love is also notable in that it is the first video game to use Sean Connery's likeness as James Bond and the first to include all new voice work by the actor. From Russia with Love is the last James Bond video game EA Games marketed before they lost the rights to Activision in 2006.
On April 5, 2005, Sean Connery was slated to lend his voice for the game, as well as likeness Connery said "As an artist, I see this as another way to explore the creative process. Video games are an extremely popular form of entertainment today, and I am looking forward to seeing how it all fits together". On October 20, 2005, From Russia With Love was complete.
Gameplay and design
From Russia with Love is the first title developed by Electronic Arts Redwood Shores to use an integrated game engine for the 3rd person action and driving segments. It was a new engine that was not based on any of the technology used for previous titles in the series but the result was similar to Id Tech 3.
The game was penned by Bond veteran Bruce Feirstein who previously worked on the film scripts for GoldenEye, Tomorrow Never Dies, and The World Is Not Enough, in addition to the script for the 2004 video game, Everything or Nothing.
The game's soundtrack was composed by Christopher Lennertz. Additionally, Vic Flick, best known for playing the original guitar riff in The James Bond Theme announced that he contributed to Lennertz's score.
Unlike in the 2004 game, Everything or Nothing, From Russia with Love features a third-person multiplayer deathmatch mode, however it lacks a cooperative feature that was present in Everything or Nothing.
One of the most obvious changes to the story for the video game is the absence of the villainous organization SPECTRE, who played a vital role in the film version, but not the novel version of From Russia with Love. Due to legal issues that have plagued the James Bond series of films since 1963, the organization was renamed as OCTOPUS and appears to lack a central leader in the same vein as Ernst Stavro Blofeld. The SPECTRE name was tied up in a long-running dispute over the film rights to Thunderball, between United Artists/MGM and the now-deceased writer Kevin McClory.
The game begins with a standard pre-title sequence in which Elizabeth Stark, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom's daughter, is kidnapped by OCTOPUS while attending a party. Fortunately, Bond was assigned to attend the party for just such an event, and he defeats OCTOPUS and rescues Stark.
Similar to the film, OCTOPUS has conceived a plan to embarrass British secret service agent 007 for the death of Dr. Julius No from the film Dr. No, in which No was an agent of SPECTRE. The plan involves the theft of a Soviet encoding machine known as the Lektor with the help of a defecting Soviet agent, Tatiana Romanova. Romanova, however, is being used by OCTOPUS to lure James Bond into a trap; their ultimate goal is to let him obtain the Lektor and then ambush him for it, killing him in humiliating fashion as well. Romanova is sent by Rosa Klebb, an agent of the KGB (in both the novel and film, an agent of SMERSH) who has secretly defected to OCTOPUS. Her immediate subordinate, Donald "Red" Grant, protects Bond through the first half of the game and attacks him in the second. The game ends with a final assault on OCTOPUS headquarters.
Many of the cast from the film version of From Russia with Love return in likeness. Sean Connery, the first official actor to portray James Bond in the EON Productions film series, returned to the role for the first time since the unofficial 1983 remake of Thunderball, Never Say Never Again. Connery not only allowed for his likeness of Bond to be used (appropriately from the 1963 film), but also recorded all new voice work for the character.
|James Bond||Sean Connery||Sean Connery|
|M||Bernard Lee||Peter Renaday|
|Miss Moneypenny||Lois Maxwell||Karly Rothenberg|
|Q||Desmond Llewelyn||Phil Proctor|
|Tatiana Romanova||Daniela Bianchi||Kari Wahlgren|
|Rosa Klebb||Lotte Lenya||Karly Rothenberg|
|Red Grant||Robert Shaw||Brian McCole|
|Kerim Bey||Pedro Armendáriz||J. B. Blanc|
|Elizabeth Stark||Natasha Bedingfield||Natasha Bedingfield|
|Eva Adara||Maria Menounos||Maria Menounos|
- Miss Elizabeth Stark: Stark is the daughter of the British Prime Minister, whom Bond rescues in the pre-title sequence.
- Eva Adara: The driver and henchwoman of Red Grant. She is both a driver and pilot. She is ultimately killed in the level "Octopus Base" where she attacks Bond with a parked fighter jet. When it is damaged to the point where it is about to be destroyed, she flies down the underground runway at Bond who is using a jet pack. Bond easily avoids her plane which then smashes into the closed hangar doors at the end of the tunnel. Her role in the game was, however, minor.
Release and reception
|Metacritic||71 of 100|
|MobyGames||74 of 100|
|Electronic Gaming Monthly||6.17 of 10|
|Game Informer||7.75 of 10|
|GamePro||4 of 5|
|GameSpot||7.0 of 10|
|GameSpy||4 of 5|
|IGN||7.9 of 10|
|X-Play||3 of 5|
Electronic Arts announced on November 1, 2005 that it was shipping From Russia With Love for release.
Within three months of its release, it had sold approximately 277,000 copies.
From Russia With Love received mixed to positive reviews from critics. IGN gives the game a 7.9 out of 10, and GameSpy rated it at 4 out of 5. Many points were given to the enhanced graphics and play difficulty.
- ↑ From Russia With Love (VG) - James Bond 007 from EA Games :: MI6 (2005-01-25). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ EA Confirms, Previews 'From Russia With Love' - James Bond 007 - CommanderBond.net - James Bond At Its Best (2005-01-31). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ IGN: From Russia With Love. IGN (2005-04-29). Retrieved on 2005-12-24.
- ↑ IGN: Sean Connery Back as Bond..
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 IGN Page for the PlayStation 2 version..
- ↑ PS2 Games > From Russia With Love Review. Yahoo! (2005-11-02). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 From Russia With Love reviews. Game Rankings. Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ From Russia With Love (xbx: 2005): Reviews. Metacritic. Retrieved on 2008-03-29.
- ↑ 007: From Russia with Love - MobyGames. MobyGames. Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ James Bond 007: From Russia With Love Xbox Review Index, James Bond 007: From Russia With Love Reviews. 1UP.com (2005-11-03). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ From Russia With Love for Xbox Review. GameSpot (2005-11-01). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ GameSpy: From Russia With Love Review. GameSpy (2005-10-31). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ IGN: From Russia With Love Review. IGN (2005-10-31). Retrieved on 2008-03-30.
- ↑ X-Play's Review of From Russia with Love..
- ↑ Levine, Robert (2006-02-06). "Wave of Video Game Fatigue Afflicts Sales, Not Thumbs - New York Times". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/06/technology/06game.html?_r=1&pagewanted=print&oref=slogin. Retrieved 2008-03-30.
- James Bond 007: From Russia with Love at the Internet Movie Database
- From Russia with Love at Xbox.com