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Top 50 Challenge 2014 – Wolfenstein: The New Order

by Wade Wojcik on Nov 28, 2014 at 04:00 AM

I'm a huge fan of shooters, so I had no qualms with picking up the new Wolfenstein game for this year's top 50 challenge. Oddly enough this is the first time I've ever played this classic series, but I'm glad I did.

At this point we're all more than familiar with the World War ll shooter formula, however Wolfenstein: The New Order managed to keep me intrigued with its unsettling premise. The year is 1946 (what should have been the year after the surrender of Germany) and Nazis are winning the struggle against the allies with the aid of strange, advanced technology not unlike that of Hydra from Captain America.

We’re thrown headfirst into an intense airborne raid of a Nazi fortress with the objective of bringing down general Wilhelm "Deathshead" Strasse. This menacing figure catches you in a trap shortly after the raid begins, and with a genuinely creepy grin he makes you choose which teammate of yours to spare, with the other doomed to a grisly fate.

I’m told this is a more personal journey than the other games in the series, and it shows. The interactions with non-player-characters do much to add emotional investment to the plot, but I was disappointed that of all the characters I got to know during my first few hours, the one I found least interesting was the protagonist.

Learn more about the Game Informer Fight For The Top 50 Challenge 2014

The gameplay is well tuned, and doesn’t deviate much from the standard first-person-shooter, with the exception of the handy lean-out mechanic for use behind cover. The game also gives you several options for shooting style. I liked that I could opt for a more precise single shot mode on my assault rifle, or go in guns blazing with the ridiculous dual wield mode.

The combat AI was moderately underwhelming, even on the hard difficulty setting. If these are the soldiers that brought the world to its knees, they must’ve just woken up from a nap. They do little more than stand in one spot and shoot, waiting to be picked off. Occasionally one or two of them will attempt to flank my position, but if I back through a doorway they either forget we were fighting or are too scarred to follow.

My Vote
Wolfenstein: The New Order brought enough to the table to make me forget about any AI shortcomings. It’s a fun shooter and looks great on the new-gen systems. The fast paced gameplay, excellent character animations, great voice acting, and formidable atmosphere make it a sure-fire choice for this year’s top 50 list.