For me, Wolfenstein: The New Order, was a title that came out of nowhere. I say this because it wasn’t something I had done any research on before purchasing, it wasn’t a game that I had heard much about during development, and I am currently undergoing a phase where I am overloading my gaming appetite with genres other than first or third-person shooters. So when I did get around to looking into it, I went into the experience with little-to-no expectations.
All I knew was that this was a successor to one of the “grandfathers of first-person shooters,” Wolfenstein 3D, which is one of my favorite classic titles of all time. Wolfenstein, a series of games which have echoed through time to have–at the very least–an above average level of quality standard within the genre. With that in mind, and simply because I was yearning for a fresh new title to play for my PlayStation 4, I let my impulses get the better of me and swiftly purchased the title to give it a try.
With all of that being said, and after having played through the game and completing the campaign/story mode, here is how I would rate various aspects of the game.
You hear that? That’s the sound of me letting out a sweet sigh of both relief and satisfaction. Why? This game offers nothing short of a much-needed breath of fresh air as it stands out head-and-shoulders above many of the shooters recently released. You can easily tell that effort and time were put into the development of the game just by how smoothly things run.
One thing worth mentioning is that there is only a single player campaign; no multi-player. This was actually something that a lot of individuals griped and complained over beforehand, however–in my opinion–this is an aspect that I think many will welcome with open arms. It certainly doesn’t hurt the content that we are offered, in fact, one could argue it is why everything seems nearly immaculate and clean. Many games–especially of the shooter genre–in today’s flooded market tend to be packaged with sub-par/mediocre multi-player modes and after a while, it pretty much gets tiresome dealing with different variations of the same thing over and over again. What you get here though is a solid single player experience which I will cover a bit more later on. So if you’re looking for a title with an intense multi-player, then you should look elsewhere.
This game includes all the little extras that seem to be the standard today like finding little collectibles and secrets of that nature, so if you enjoy exploring and really taking in the scenery, then you’re in for quite the treat. In fact, speaking of treats, later on in the game, there is actually a spot that can trigger the ability to play through the first level of the classic Wolfenstein 3D! Awesome!
Aside from that, if you’re familiar with the shooter genre, then you’ll pretty much know what to expect. There are various difficulty settings, lots of action, a variety of enemies that compliment the overall story, perks that can be unlocked to make the experience more enjoyable or less difficult, and a decent amount of weapons to sort through at your convenience. The auto-save feature is a nice touch and runs efficiently, as well as the frequent checkpoint system that can give you a second opportunity at those tough spots.
Concerning the game play, one final aspect worth detailing is the fact that you can choose to go through each level (with the exception of a few segments) covertly using stealth tactics. Or, if you’d rather just wreak havoc, you can just “spray-and-pray” and watch as the carnage unfolds before your very eyes. Personally, I prefer a healthy balance of both, and this game really executes both methods very well.
All in all, the game play featured here is very solid and definitely offers up a hefty serving of fun for the player; and isn’t that what it is all about?
Depending on which version you purchase, this is definitely one of the things that help to make the game stand out. No, it’s not the most eye-popping display of pixels out there today, but it’s the detail put into the little things that are the real treat here. The glistening of eyes, the spewing of crimson blood, cloudy mists of dust and smoke hovering throughout the air, the shattering of glass, and even basic things like documents scattered around on the floor or hanging up on the wall. There are certain sequences where there is a lot going on in the background and it would be nearly impossible to catch everything that is happening all at once. All of these added touches, on top of the already well animated visuals, all help to make this game a feast for the eyes.
I’ll keep this segment as brief and as free of any dynamic spoilers as possible. Yet basically, the story takes place in an alternate reality where Nazi Germany won World War II and–for all intents and purposes–have since taken over the world and spread their regime throughout the entire planet. That alone is honestly all you need to know, because that is enough to get just about anyone pumped up and ready to jump right in on the action.
The characters are very well done in both their development as well as the voice acting. There is enough interaction with most of the main cast that allow you to actually “care” about what is happening and that is a crucial aspect of any story; feeling invested. As for the antagonist? Well he does his job in being someone that you generally want to see put to justice. Trying not to say too much, but one neat and enjoyable aspect is that there is even an opportunity to play through the game a second time with different dialogue and character involvement.
So as far as the story goes, the bottom line is this tale is extremely well written, captivating, and intense; especially considering it is a member of the shooter genre.
When it comes to how the game plays out, feels, and controls, it all seems very natural and if you’re familiar with shooters, the button combinations should make you feel right at home. Of course, if something doesn’t suit your needs here, you can always reconfigure the control scheme to one of the different configurations made available; which is always a plus. For the most part, there isn’t any lag, so if you make a mistake here, sorry but it’s most likely your own fault. While not perfect, there is pretty much nothing to complain about here. Had there been a multi-player mode, things may or may not have been worse in this department.
As mentioned earlier, the voice acting is executed very well and the same can easily be said for most of the audio throughout the game. Gun sounds all seem authentic, as well as all the various “bangs,” “booms,” and “pows,” that go with a game of this nature. There are so many things you may not catch at first, and having subtitles on can be beneficial in that regard. It’s really satisfying–I must say–to hear a Nazi soldier mutter something just before shoving a knife through his neck; is that wrong? Really helps brings back some nostalgia from the old Wolfenstein 3D days!
Playing through the game with the music on–if that is your sort of thing–proves to be a rewarding experience. There are some games out there where the selection of music can be questionable at best, yet here, it really helps to set the mood and can even be suspenseful when first encountering unknown areas. Personally, I think the intro music is really epic and it easily gets me fueled up and ready to lock-and-load.
As far as finding incentives to replay through the game, as I mentioned before, there is an opportunity to play through the story with alternate character dialogue and involvement, so a second play-through could easily be warranted if you so desire.
Aside from that, there is no multi-player mode…so that does hurt the chances of keeping the disc inside your system for too long. There are things to collect like concept art, hidden items, perks, and even trophies/achievements if that is your cup of tea.
Yet due to the lack of variety in this department, I have to rate things for what they are, and therefore this category suffers the most in terms of my rating.