Coming off the failure that was Tomorrow Never Dies, publisher EA wanted to return to James Bond's roots as a first-person shooter. The game, based on the film of the same name, had a different developer for each of the three platforms that it was released on. The Nintendo 64 version was developed by Eurocom, the PlayStation version was developed by Black Ops Entertainment, the developer of the previous James Bond game Tomorrow Never Dies, and by 2n Productions for the Game Boy Color. Versions of the game for the PC and PlayStation 2 were planned for release but were later cancelled midway through the development cycle.
The campaign contained multiple gadgets and numerous weapons the player could use. Each weapon had a second setting on it, such as the SA90, which could switch between single and burst modes of fire.
The World is Not Enough contained a robust split-screen mode found in most James Bond games. Players could customize their experience in various ways. They could choose what weapons they wanted to be available ( sniper rifles, explosive weapons, close combat etc.), choose how they wanted their avatar to look while playing in the game, have either vertical or horizontal split-screen, and select score limit and match time. Players could fight in teams, Free-for-All, Last Man Standing, uplink, Capture the Flag and King of the Hill modes. During the game, players could pick up various gadgets and aids such as body armor and night vision goggles.