Remember the days, the beautiful days when you'd be sat in front of your television screen, the N64 all wired up and ready to go? You preemptively blew into the cartridge to make sure that things would run smoothly on startup. You got your friends over to hang out, maybe your mom gave you all a bowl of chips. Thanks, mom.
You probably didn't have a whole bunch of games. Those things were expensive, man. But you did plead and beg to make sure you had at least a couple, some games you could play with your friends and such.
The game was high-octane ploygonal fun. It was the shooter we all wanted it to be, needed it to be. It had a compleeing narrative for those who idealize the single-player, and it had a awesome multiplayer.
I would say it was the most awesome multiplayer on the market. It was frantic and fun and based out of some truly amazing source material. Seriously, who can hate on James Bond?
The game also included a built-in frustration mechanic, in the way of the character Oddjob, playable in the multiplayer. That little shit.
HUGE GODDAMN DIFFERENCE
He was short enough that he stood beneath the reticule, so you would have to very quickly be able to look down to shoot him. He would be virtually untargetable, and in the one-shot one-kill matches, it meant he would be virtually impossible to kill.
Everyone had that one friend, that one Oddjob friend. Oddjob friend was an unquestionable douche.
But the fact that the game has this kind of thing to point to, that is such a universal memory for everyone who played it, makes it iconic among all games, especially from that era.