GoldenEye 007 on the Nintendo 64 remains an all-time classic, often referred to as the title that revolutionised the idea of the FPS genre on home consoles. As an iconic Rare release it is, unfortunately, locked in licensing limbo, meaning that to play it you need to fire up the cartridge on the original hardware.
Many still do that, of course, due to its enduring popularity. It still fascinates gamers, and those that worked on the project are still able to catch attention by going over little-known details. Its unlicensed guns are one such area of interest, and something that was covered in an intriguing Eurogamer article last year. The game’s producer and director, Martin Hollis, has now spoken to Edge about the Klobb, widely recognised as the worst gun in the game. Speaking affectionately — it seems — about the mediocre weapon, Hollis said the following about its origins and source of inspiration.
The Skorpion is cheaply made in Czechoslovakia, I believe. There’s some kind of Eastern European Mafia connection too. There are various flashy guns in the game, but the Klobb isn’t one of them. It’s not a B-list gun. You might say it’s a K-list gun…
There are a few scenarios in which it’s possible to pick up two Klobbs and dual-wield them. When you do so, it makes an awesome sound and feels fantastic. You think to yourself, ‘Oh, yeah! I’m the s**t’. Until you actually try to shoot an enemy with the gun, that is, and realise that it’s a bit like a noisy water pistol.
It’s both the weakness of the bullets [and] also the wide angle of fire. Many of the guns were highly tuned, but the Klobb was not one of them. It was an unloved character – the runt of the group.
Like other weapons it was also loosely named after members of the development team, with Hollis regretting that the Klobb could be linked to producer Ken Lobb.
For example, we had the DD44 Dostovei, which was named after David Doak. The tradition even carried into follow-up Perfect Dark… But the Klobb was named after Ken Lobb, who was our Nintendo-side producer and contact.
I do slightly regret naming such a poor weapon after him, since I am tremendously fond of the man. He is astonishingly enthusiastic about games, even after years of working in the industry. It’s a little unfair that we named such a useless weapon after him. And for that I am sorry.
As Hollis explains, however, the Klobb was useful in one particular scenario, where its flaws of poor accuracy and weak power were assets.
Dual-wielded Klobbs are astonishingly effective in License To Kill mode. It’s a fast-paced multiplayer game in which there’s not a great deal of time to line up shots with any accuracy. It’s more like ‘spray and pray’, and the Klobb is ideally suited to this style. You can enter a room and let loose with the weapons; the somewhat random spread of bullets makes the gun come into its own.
We still enjoy the occasional round of GoldenEye 007 on the N64, though we don't often seek out the poor old Klobb. If you feel so inclined you can share your memories of this erratic weapon in the comments below.