GoldenEye 007 has made its long-awaited return, as it’s available on the Nintendo Switch as part of the Nintendo Switch Online Expansion Pack and on Xbox systems as part of Rare Replay and Xbox Game Pass. These two versions of GoldenEye 007 are based on the Nintendo 64 original and are not full remakes or remasters but have unique qualities that set them apart.
GoldenEye 007 has online multiplayer on Nintendo Switch
The biggest selling point of the Nintendo Switch version of GoldenEye is the online multiplayer, which is absent from the Xbox versions of the game. This is the same kind of multiplayer as the other N64 titles on Nintendo Switch Online, with players given remote access to the local multiplayer modes in the game. This is notable for GoldenEye because all players have to share a split-screen view where everyone can see the screen of the other combatants.
However, there is a huge downside to playing on Nintendo Switch, as the control scheme for the game is terrible. GoldenEye was made with an N64 controller in mind, and the default controls are incredibly difficult to use with Joy-Cons or a Pro Controller. Now, there are options to remap the controls of the Nintendo Switch, which makes GoldenEye a little more playable, but this involves messing around with presets whenever anyone wants to play the game.
GoldenEye 007 has improved controls & visuals on Xbox systems
While the Xbox version of GoldenEye is based on the N64 version of the game (and not the canceled Xbox Live Arcade version from years ago), it does have some new additions, like unlockable achievements, as well as visual improvements in the form of native 16:9, a consistent refresh rate, and 4k Ultra HD support. These changes aren’t huge, as there’s only so much that can be improved about GoldenEye, but they make the game look better than the Nintendo Switch port.
Unfortunately, the Xbox version of GoldenEye lacks online multiplayer, which is a huge strike against the game. The Xbox version only has the local multiplayer modes from the original GoldenEye on the N64, with no new content included.
Still, the Xbox version does have one major change that makes it the superior version; the controls. The Xbox port has remapped the buttons, so they work better with a dual-stick controller. This makes the Xbox port the more comfortable version of GoldenEye, especially for those who never played the original and aren’t used to its unconventional control scheme.
Which version of GoldenEye 007 is better?
The two versions of GoldenEye have some differences in terms of their visuals, but the choice breaks down to the online multiplayer and the controls. The people who want to run around The Facility with their friends should play the Nintendo Switch version, while those who only care about single-player should go for the Xbox version.