Hands-On: Wolfenstein: The New Order Preview at E3 2013


Being completely outmatched never seemed so fun.

Wolfenstein: The New Order is something of a novelty in the gaming space. Wolfenstein is one of the most classic franchises out there, originating with Castle Wolfenstein way back in 1981, and they’ve been fiddling with the franchise since. The New Order takes the Nazis and puts them in charge, thanks to a mysterious technology. BJ Blazkowicz, the protagonist introduced in later Wolfenstein titles, awakens from a coma in 1960, to discover the new, Nazi-led order, and naturally decides to fight back in the most over-the-top fashion you can imagine.

The New Order isn’t just about dual-wielding outrageously large guns, though, there are characters, and a plot, and you’re supposed to get a glimpse of the softer side of the “Nazi-ass-kicking action hero,” in part thanks to his companion, Anya. It’s unclear how much of the story will focus on his companion or their relationship, but the one scene we did get to see, if it’s any indication, says that their interactions may well play a prominent role.

All that said, I’m not convinced that I really care about his relationship with Anya, at least not as much as I care about his ability to mow down Nazis by the truckload. Fortunately, that part of the series hasn’t changed a bit. You’ll still be using fantastic weapons to blow up Nazis left and right. It’s a pure run and gun affair, with giant Nazi robots taking center stage. The portion of the game I played featured nigh-unkillable robotic dogs the size of a small truck, which you had to use the environment to take down. These non-gunplay elements added a lot to the enjoyment of the demo, but the core experience is still gunning down the third reich.

One particularly interesting feature from the demo is the secondary fire ability on most guns, like the laser pistol, which doubles as a plasma cutter which you can use to cut through mesh wire walls to get to new areas. You can run, duck, and slide to navigate through small spaces, which is particularly crucial for taking out the aforementioned giant robotic canines.

This is definitely a game to keep an eye on. It’s an unapologetic blood bath, but assuming that’s what you’re looking for, this seems like where you want to be. If you like heavy weaponry, giant robots, and killing Nazis, look no further than Wolfenstein: The New Order.

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