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“90 bugs left”: Rare devs talk about the nearly completed Goldeneye 007 remake

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The original Goldeneye 007 remake team, hanging out with cardboard Pierce Brosnan; this photo was graciously provided to Ars Technica by original team member Ross Bury (bottom-left). [credit:
Ross Bury ]

At Ars Technica, our love of classic shooter video games usually revolves around the PC, but it’s hard to talk about that golden age of shooters without talking about Goldeneye 007. Rare’s first shooter for the N64 was an astounding technical achievement in 1997, and many of its innovations still hold up nearly 25 years later… but that’s only part of its modern mystique.

Unlike many classic ’80s and ’90s games, Goldeneye 007 never got a formal re-release on newer game systems. But it nearly happened. I’ve spent years reporting on leaks about an Xbox 360 remaster, helmed primarily by original studio Rare, which was nearly completed and then canceled. Last week, those years of teases exploded when a near-final beta dated August 2007 leaked—playable from start to finish on Xbox 360 hardware and emulators.

In light of the latest leak, I spoke via email to two of the Goldeneye 007 remaster project’s eight original team members, artist Ross Bury and programmer Mark Edmonds, to fill in as many gaps as they could remember 14 years later. I tracked those names in part because they’re not credited in the leaked game’s normal credits sequence, but rather are visible when looking at any in-game computer terminals. When pressed about his involvement, Bury began his first email with two modest answers: “Not sure that there’s too much to tell,” and “I’m pretty sure I’m no longer under an NDA regarding it.”

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