Written By: Tyler Oldfield
Review On: PlayStation 4
“With an unfortunate snooze-fest of an opener, the game quickly picks up the pace and provides a solid first-person action that fans of the serious will adore.”
World War 2 games have been a running trend for the first-person shooter; it was until only a few years ago the steam had settled. Developers understand the fatigue in the era, which why if a game takes place in this time period than there is most likely a twist thrown in to keep things fresh. Machine Games–developers behind this latest entry–have succeeded in bringing the beloved series back into the light, with a more “serious” and grounded story.
You’re opened with the series hero, B.J. Blazkowicz, engaged in an all-out dogfight high above the ocean. Things of course begin to go wrong and you are tasked to care of certain objectives in order to keep your plane flying. Your overall mission is to reach a compound that is holding a rather disturbing general; General Deathshead, and to simply eliminate him. This opening scene acts like a tutorial to get an understanding of the games mechanics. However, the opening can leave a bad taste in your mouth and can get you discourage from wanting to continue. Fight through this section, and things will begin to roll.
After being in a vegetable state for 14 years, Blazkowicz comes through just in time to save his own life from the terrorizing Nazis. He quickly learns that the fascist army had won the war and rule nearly the whole world. He takes matters into his own hands and sets out to find the resistance army to help stop the evildoers and take revenge on General Deathsheads. I found the story very interesting and the solid voice acting helped to sell it. Wolfenstein has never been about taking itself too seriously and neither does this one, however; out of all the entries this one has a more serious tone to it. Another reason the story is interesting is because the setup is almost plausible. History has told us that the Nazis did secret experiments on bodies and put a ton of resources into developing world destruction weaponry. In this story you see that, and it makes the story more grounded.
After grinding through a forgettable opener you’ll begin to see that Wolfenstein has a lot more going for it. Its fast pace first-person action leaves you gripping your controller and feeling satisfaction with every bullet penetrating your enemy. The weapons are unique in a way that they don’t stray too far off from familiar but also don’t get carried with the “high-tech” advancements. Most weapons can be dual-wielded, even though there is really no advantage into having two weapons out. In fact, I rarely used duel weapons, it was highly inaccurate and the recoil of two guns [mainly machine rifles] was causing bullets to spray everywhere, hitting targets if lucky. If surrounded by a ton of enemies then maybe bringing out the second gun will help, but I recommend sticking with just the single weapon in hand.
The games presentation was remarkable but with its flaws. The changeover from gameplay to cut scenes can be inadequate, and takes you out of the intense action. Although during the cut scenes you’re addressed to some believable acting, with great body and facial animation, along with the already mentioned, superb voice work. The in-game scenery can leave you in awe with its Hollywood-esque set pieces, and the gratification of seeing a Nazis brain burst onto a wall with a faithful headshot. The game earns its mature rating, with limbs being blasted off and heads popping off like grapefruit from explosions. Hearing the kick of your arsenal mow down your foes pumps the action up. Shotguns blast with a devastating shockwave, assault rifles echo through hallways. Even the silence of a muffled pistol makes the noises realistic.
FINAL SAY: Machine Games did a sensational job bringing the classic Wolfenstein brand back into the light. With an unfortunate snooze-fest of an opener, the game quickly picks up the pace and provides a solid first-person action that fans of the serious will adore. With its more serious tone in storytelling and a diverse set of characters, Wolfenstein is a game everyone should check out.