Wolf 2 Complete

Wow, that was a quick turnaround! I managed to play Wolfenstein II for a couple hours here and there throughout the week and made a final push over the weekend, finally completing the game last night. It turns out I was at the very end of the game on Sunday but had stopped to go play some MTG with my roommate, so within 30 minutes last night it was over. There are DLCs and things but I’m going to pass on those, as my girlfriend bought me a copy of The Old Blood, which is the prequel to the original game and should hopefully fill in some story gaps. I should be able to complete that one long before Youngblood comes out, but at least I’ll be able to say that I played all of Machine Games’ Wolfenstein titles on offer.

What a crazy adventure this game was. There are some spoilery screenshots ahead, so if you haven’t played this year old game, you might want to skip this post.

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From getting beheaded on national television to having your severed head put in a jar and then attached to a cybernetic body, this was surely a crazy experience. Seeing an aging hitler, and finally getting your revenge on the Frau was an amazingly fun time. I was hooked from start to finish, and though there wasn’t anything too challenging to complete, it was still not the easiest shooter I’ve played through. There are varying difficulty levels, so most players should be able to find their sweet spot. Graphically the game was amazing, if not a little gory. As a matter of fact there is a bunch of adult oriented content in this title, from sex scenes, to the aforementioned gore, to various vulgarities and slurs. But if you aren’t a snowflake, you’ll probably be able to take it for what it is. I’m not sure why this game got some negative reviews, as there wasn’t anything I took issue with, but perhaps I’m part of the crowd the game was designed for. I look forward to the next iteration that’s for sure!

The New Colossus

The Steam Summer Sale is in full swing and as usual I was tempted by some titles that have long been on my wishlist but are normally full priced. It’s hard to pass up a good deal, so I was trying to justify spending the money while having a conversation with my girlfriend. I really couldn’t justify the expenditure, but she pulled the trigger for me. I’m a lucky guy! As you could probably guess by the title and picture above, Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus has been on my list for a long time and it was 60% off during the sale so for $24 it came into my possession.

During my first session with the game, I was already impressed. It gets a little graphic and touches on some important social issues within the first thirty minutes, but otherwise feels much like the original. Graphically it seems to be done in the same engine because I feel like it’s similar enough to The New Order, but I also haven’t played that one in quite some time so perhaps there have been some updates that I’m unaware of. I was happy to see that it supported 21:9 aspect ratio and 2k resolution, so it looks glorious on my new (ish) monitor. I saw no issues with framerate drops or hitching/tearing. It flows seamlessly between cut scene and game engine and I have been enthralled with the storyline once again.

I’m still impressed by the way these developers managed to take a 1990’s FPS with zero story and turn it into this magnum opus, but I’m glad they have because it feels like so much more than a mindless shooter. Sure, the game is fairly linear and has its share of big fuck you weaponry and explosions, but in between we see the humanity of this world and these characters and it’s a nice change of pace from the hoorah military shooters that have dominated the marketplace for so long. Similar to titles like Bioshock, this one has a compelling story that keeps you invested after the firefights have calmed down.

When the game opens, it gives you a little snippet of what happened in the first game, and then picks up precisely where it left off. B.J. got a little fucked up at the end of the first game, and gave the order to blow shit up despite the fact that it would kill him. Thankfully his friends came to his rescue, but the extent of his injuries were pretty dire. He floats in and out of consciousness, having flashbacks of his childhood (which seemed pretty fucked up) while his friends cut out bits of his guts and whatnot. Eventually he recovers, just to find that the ship he’s on is under attack, and finding that his legs aren’t working at that juncture. Equipped with a wheelchair and a gun, he goes on the offensive.

Through the first few scenes he eventually gets captured and his friend gets beheaded. The evil leader from the first game is back and wants to make the revolutionaries pay. She fat shames her daughter, tries to force her to do the beheading and then takes matters into her own hands. Thankfully at one point while trying to kill another friend, he breaks loose and shoots some of the soldiers, and in the ensuing scuffle B.J. is able to get into the power armor that had been worn by his beheaded friend and can now use his legs again! The Frau escapes while her daughter helps the team to escape and release their U-boat from the airship’s grasp.

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At this point I took a break but intend on pushing through this title fairly quickly. My girl also ponied up for the Dark Souls Remaster and I really want to get going on that series so I’ll have more to write about in that regard soon.

Did you grab anything in the Summer Sale?

Thoughts on E3 2017

Despite the fact that I knew E3 was coming up fairly soon I didn’t realize it was this weekend and ended this evening with Sony’s Conference. When I realized I had missed a couple of days worth of news I figured I would make my rounds and check out trailers and whatnot. The usual suspects were present as always: EA, Activision, Ubisoft, Bethesda, Microsoft, Sony, and the PC Gaming Show. Most years when I talk about the games coming out of E3 it’s difficult to cut a list down to a manageable size for a blog post, but this year it was difficult to put together this list. There simply wasn’t much announced that was really amazing and the rest of the show was just more information on things we already knew about. I was underwhelmed with the total package, and the sprinkled in bits from YouTube/Twitch personalities along with some cringy e-sports tie-ins did not add to the overall experience. That isn’t to say that I don’t see some games on the horizon that interest me, it just felt like less of them than usual. Perhaps I’m just less enthused with gaming in general as of late. Either way, let’s run through my anticipated games from E3 2017:

The Crew 2

I was hesitant to put The Crew’s sequel on my list, because despite owning the first game and enjoying it, at some point I was locked out of my Ubisoft account so I can’t access any of the games (of which I admit are few) that I own that are accessed via the Ubisoft launcher. And though I purchased most of said games via Steam, you still have to use the Ubi launcher to play them. I did my due diligence as far as trying to recover my account via their various means of support, but that’s basically shit so the games I did own I deleted and the launcher was removed from my system. I will not be buying anymore games from them on my PC. On PS4 however, I wouldn’t have any problems, so I might just go that route. The added elements to this sequel feel like they’ll make the game even more entertaining than it already was, and I’m sure the title would feel great on console anyway.

Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus

I didn’t think Wolfenstein The New Order would resonate as well with me as it did. Original trailers made it look rather hokey and generic, but after playing through DOOM I was still craving that old-school shooter vibe so I gave WTNO a try. I loved it. It had everything I enjoy in a single player shooter and played liquid smooth on my PC. I have no doubts that the sequel will also play amazing and bring back the feels.

The Evil Within 2

Admittedly I did not finish the first chapter of this game, and feel that I should do so before I play this one. I’d also say that this isn’t high on my list of must-haves, but I did enjoy the vibe of the original and felt it was more on par with earlier Resident Evil style games. This makes sense due to the pedigree of the creator, but I have to admit that the recently released Resident Evil VII was phenomenal. EW2 will have to pull it’s weight if it wants the survival horror crown.

Quake Champions

We saw Quake Champions announced last year, and I didn’t really think much of it. It’s been quite some time since I’ve played a true arena shooter with any regularity, but I did spend many hours playing Quake 3, Unreal Tournament and later Quake Live, so I do have that itch on occasion. The addition of some interesting layers such as individual champions and special abilities makes me think it will fit right up my alley. I love the shit out of Paladins, and though I know they aren’t an apples to apples comparison, the similarities are there and give me the feeling I’ll enjoy it.

Anthem

A new Bioware game comes with bated breath. Though I didn’t see anything wrong with what little I’ve played of their last two releases (ME:A and DA:I before that) there have been plenty of stories about broken releases and uninspired content for both so I look at Anthem as a possible must-have, but I’m not sure yet. From the trailer I gather that it will be a multiplayer RPG, and it looks like it’s Mass Effect style gameplay. I assume this is EA’s answer to Activision’s Destiny, similar to their yearly battle for profit shares via Battlefield and Call of Duty franchises. I’d also assume Bioware took lessons learned from their multiplayer formats for Mass Effect and Dragon Age and hopefully do this one right. Knowing the things we know though, it’s hard to say. I’ll be watching this one for sure.

Beyond Good & Evil 2

A long awaited sequel to a beloved game from early adulthood. I played the original back in the Playstation 2 days and then played it again when the remaster hit on Playstation 3. The cinematics alone show the sheer amount of time that has passed between the two games, we never imagined games looking like that when we were playing the original. Still, no real gameplay yet, so who knows if it’s really going to release? I think we’ll probably see it next year at the earliest. Still one I’m looking forward to!

BattleTech

An interesting looking title that came out of the PC Gamer show, it appears to be a turn based strategy game, but I only saw bits of combat. Will their be base management or other meta games? Time will tell I suppose. Still looks pretty cool even if it is just battles all the time!

Playlink

Sony introduced their Playlink program. An interesting new development, but not the first time I’ve seen apps on our phones try to interact with other devices. Companion apps are nothing new, but games where you get to play the game using your phone as a controller aren’t quite so common. The only one I’ve played was made by fellow blogger Talarian, called Eon Altar. The games they teased were nothing like the aforementioned RPG, but still the idea is a novel concept. I’m hoping something interesting comes out of this line of games.

Gran Turismo Sport

One of the games on my list that isn’t a new announcement, it’s actually supposed to release in Q4 of this year, but it’s very highly anticipated for me. I absolutely adore the GT series and I can’t wait to get my hands on this one!

Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

It was definitely teased at the end of Nathan Drake’s run of the Uncharted franchise that his daughter would pick up the reigns, and in the trailer we find a grown up daughter ready to follow in her father’s footsteps. It’s unclear if the game will be co-op, but it sure looked that way in the trailer. Though older entries have always had companions, so perhaps it’s still traditional AI. Regardless, Naughty Dog are great at what they do so I’m sure it will be a blast no matter how they tell the story.

Days Gone

This one came out of nowhere and has a very Last of Us sort of feel. I liked what I saw, but who knows what the game will actually play like.

There were many other titles showcased, and of course there are still a couple more days dedicated to Nintendo and I’m sure there are more indies to be announced, but this was the bulk of what I saw that I was the most interested in this time around.