Tag Archives: Nazis

Captain B.J. Blazkowicz resolutely takes on the Nazis

I’ve got bad news: I know all the spoilery bits for Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus already. That’s just one of the few sacrifices I had to make to listen to Giant Bomb‘s 2017 GOTY deliberations, along with knowing where things ultimately go in NierR:Automata, Yakuza 0, and Persona 5. Oh well. Thankfully, I was able to complete both Night in the Woods and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild just before the year came to a close. But considering that I’m only just now finishing up Wolfenstein: The New Order, here’s hoping I forget many details about the much-talked about sequel…whenever I get to it (my prediction: somewhere in late 2019).

I got Wolfenstein: The New Order, along with the follow-up/prequel Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, The Inner World, and Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, during Microsoft’s big Black Friday sale in that crazy year called 2017. Anyways, I’m trying to make a more conscious effort to the play the games I buy instead of letting them sit for months unattended, and so I recently loaded up Wolfenstein: The New Order, kept it on the default difficulty setting, and quickly got about putting Nazis in their place. It’s good fun, if surprisingly straightforward, both in terms of gameplay and plot.

I’ll do my best to provide a plot summary. Some three years after the destruction of the Black Sun portal, the Nazis deployed advanced technologies, which enabled them to turn the tide against the Allies. On July 16, 1946, at dawn, U.S. special forces operative Captain William “B.J.” Blazkowicz, accompanied by pilot Fergus Reid and Private Probst Wyatt III, took part in a massive Allied air raid against a fortress and weapons laboratory run by General Wilhelm “Deathshead” Strasse. Unfortunately, the three of them were captured and brought to a human experimentation laboratory where Deathshead forced Blazkowicz to choose one of his companions to die–either Fergus or Wyatt. Afterwards, Blazkowicz escapes the laboratory, but suffers a critical head injury, rendering him unconscious and putting him in a coma for 14 years. He comes back to life in a psychiatric asylum in Poland, now determined more than ever to find his friends and blast apart some Nazi faces. Phew.

Wolfenstein: The New Order is a first-person shooter that, at many times, asks to you to do things stealthily. There’s also cover-based shooting and entire sequences where you are exploring an area or solving some simple puzzles. I came at this as I do all first-person things–cautiously. Unfortunately, when the chaos kicks in and you are discovered, the best thing to do is keep moving and don’t stop firing. The game is pretty generous with armor, health, and ammo pick-ups, so, honestly, go nuts. However, when I got to Chapter 12: Gibraltar Bridge, I hit a serious snag, finding the difficulty–even on the normal setting–to be a bit much to overcome. I’m not alone in this. You are basically climbing up a broken bridge, at a serious disadvantage, with numerous enemies high above you and out of sight. After about ten or so attempts, I gave up and dropped the difficulty down to “Can I play, Daddy?”, which at first bothered me, but then I had a good time mowing down everyone in B.J.’s way without even giving a second thought to taking cover or needing more health.

Perhaps my favorite thing about Wolfenstein: The New Order is its perk system. Instead of collecting XP and leveling up your B.J.–keep it clean, kids–to spend skill points on perks, you earn upgrades by doing specific tasks. Kind of like in Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, where if you want to raise your blocking stats with a shield, start blocking with a shield more. These minor upgrades enhance Blazkowicz’s combat aptitude by increasing his maximum health, ammo count, and damage taken, which is all well and good, but you are playing on the easiest of difficulty levels this doesn’t matter much. Still, going after them is enjoyable, and I really had a good time sprint-sliding and killing Nazis to ultimately strengthen my skills at…well, killing Nazis. Also, you can totally take advantage of key checkpoints in certain levels to grind out some of the trickier perks, which I totally did.

So yeah, that’s Wolfenstein: The New Order. I’m currently playing clean-up on some of its collectibles and Achievements (none of them related to difficulty settings though), but I suspect after that I’ll move on to Wolfenstein: The Old Blood…soonish. Eh, maybe. I also need to finish Prey, and then I’d love to get into Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. Eep, too many games.


2018 Game Review Haiku, #4 – Wolfenstein: The New Order

Select your timeline
And start killing Nazi scum
Orders from B.J.

For 2018, I’m mixing things up by fusing my marvelous artwork and even more amazing skills at writing videogame-themed haikus to give you…a piece of artwork followed by a haiku. I know, it’s crazy. Here’s hoping you like at least one aspect or even both, and I’m curious to see if my drawing style changes at all over three hundred and sixty-five days (no leap year until 2020, kids). Okay, another year of 5–7–5 syllable counts is officially a go.

Spent 75,000 contraband in The Saboteur, and all I got was this lousy Achievement

Yay, I can finally stop fully stocking up on weapons and ammo for guns I don’t even use in The Saboteur because I unlocked the following Achievement last night:

Saint Honoré (15G): You spent 75,000 contraband.

That took awhile, and yes, I’m including my own goofiness here from when I played for two nights straight and forgot to save each time. Oof. Basically, my strategy for this was as so: fill up on grenades and dynamite, buy ammo for ALL weapons, grab two, with one of them in particular the rocket launcher, go out and destroy some Nazi white dots until I ran out of ammunition, die, and do it all over again. Simple, but slow. I also was kind of banking on popping some other Achievements along the way–like the ones for clearing X ambient freeplay events in Paris Area 1, Paris Area 2, Paris Area 3, and the surrounding countryside–but that hasn’t happened yet. Phooey. Sure feels like I blew up a ton of Nazi guardtowers.

Reviewing the Achievements list, I’m a little uncertain about many of them. Solid Gold asks that Sean earned every gold level perk, which is not an easy task. I have four or five to go, but I’m struggling with the ones that say to blow up 10 Nazi soldiers with dynamite in like 10 seconds, as well as the perk specific for Nazi vehicles. I think I missed the boat on the Liberator of France Achievement as that deals with inspiring the people of France, most likely tied to a side mission no longer available, and I am only working off of one save file. The remainder do just involve a lot more grinding (finding postcards, kissing women, rescuing innocent civilians), which I feel like I’m going to get tired of very soon. If I don’t finish everything up here that I want to complete by the time I get Fallout: New Vegas…well, it mostly won’t ever get done then. Oh well. I’m okay with not 1,000 Gamerscoring this one, but it might’ve been nice since it’s very much an underdog release. It’s definitely given me a lot of content to eat up for a minimal price tag of $17.00 used.

Autosave feature, you do not complete me

I beat The Saboteur some weeks back, but it’s a game I keep on playing. There’s a lot of post-ending grinding to do (mostly for Achievements), and I know it’s not something one completes over the course of a single night. For example, one Achievement asks that Sean spend 75,000 contraband. That’s A LOT. By the game’s end, I had only spent around 45,000, and this Achievement now involves a lot of weapon/ammo buying, and dying to head back to the shop to rinse and repeat. So…slow is the name of the game, but that’s okay with me. I enjoy playing this game in short spurts, killing a couple of Nazi dots and continuing to explore this wonderfully open Paris.

However, I loaded up the game last night to discover that my last save was from early July 2010. Um, no. I had just played the game a few days before…which means all that hard work of blowing up Nazi towers and collecting postcards was all for naught. This also includes the roughly 5,000 contraband I worked on spending to get me closer to the 75,000 mark. And here’s why this happened: I relied on autosave, a function that worked well throughout the main story missions as it saved often and strongly, most often at different mission checkpoints. However, in the post-game world, where there’s no missions left to do, the autosave function does not compute as often as I’d like. I have to wonder if it even does anymore at all. Now there’s only manual saving, something I forgot to do last time. And after seeing all those white dots back on the world map, I will never forget again.

So yeah, I’m a little grumpy over this, and will now most likely take a break from The Saboteur. Just a few days, that’s all. It’s not been my proudest moment. And now I’m reminded of a beautiful little quote from our leading lad Sean Devlin, “Let’s see how proud you are with my f*cking boot up your arse!”

Let me boast about protecting the Le Havre coast

Work progresses slowly on The Saboteur as I sneak and sabotage my way to eliminating more and more white dots, also known as ambient freeplay missions. I try to focus on pockets of them, but do occasionally get sidetracked when escaping Nazis in pursuit and end up in a different area of the map than previously planned for. However, with a headquarters located in a church in Le Havre, I decided to try my luck clearing out the place, knowing that if Sean was killed in action, he’d respawn pretty close by so I wouldn’t have to trek back across the countryside and could easily stock up on grenades and such. This plan took some time, a lot of dynamite, and too much frustrating on having to constantly fight the same Nazis in the same spots after dying and returning to the scene, but it worked. See:

Coast Guard (15G): You completed 76 ambient freeplay in Le Havre.

Yeah. 76 is a lot of white dots. I’m sure I took out a few when playing the main story missions, but there was a good chunk I had missed. None were too hard to destroy save for three dots inside the fortress atop the hill, which, as you can see from my now unlocked Achievement, were not needed.

Le Havre is a nice little port town in the upper left corner of France. There’s docks and boats and a wharf and seagulls. It’s quaint, something out of a literary classic, and I like that. I can only imagine what it’s like now, in 2010, with iPads and tourists and sneakers with power laces. Maybe not as quaint, maybe not as literary. I almost felt bad when some citizens would spy me placing dynamite and go running off, shrieking, “He’s got a bomb!” as if I was ruining everything. My bad. Only trying to free y’all from Nazi oppression. I can just go back to drinking if that’s what’s preferred. Sorry, Jules.

My next Achievement target is for clearing out 53 white dots in Saarbrucken. Should be a piece of cake in comparison to Le Havre. I got a few last night before getting too sleepy. The problem this time around is that there isn’t a local HQ in the area, nor a weapons dealer. So, I need to stock up and go in prepared, not wasting a single grenade or bundle of dynamite. Otherwise, it’s a lot of back and forth, back and forth, and that’s just not fun. Yeah, if anything, The Saboteur could use a fast travel system. I understand why it’s not there–those Nazi checkpoints exist to keep you on your toes and give you something to run from–but it would sure make this end-of-game grinding a lot more feasible. Oh well. Still having a great time, and that’s nothing to complain about.

PURCHASES OF THE MONTH: Picross 3D and The Saboteur

Well, I caved over the weekend. Had to pick up something new before May ended, and so I nabbed Picross 3D for a cool $20.00 and a used copy of The Saboteur for $15.00. Yeah, not two games I’d really ever think of pairing together, but good deals nonetheless.

Picross 3D is a unique puzzler that, a bit to my dismay, relies heavily on math skills to solve. Me? I’m no good with the multiplication tables and such. But I’m getting the hang of it despite have trouble on some of the Beginner and Level 1 puzzles. There’s over 350 in the game, and I’ve gotten through about 50 or so at this point. Presentation is nice and unobtrusive, and you can change the game’s overall soundtrack to whatever you want…Latin, twinkly (?), calm. I locked it down on the 8-bit selection. Doot doot doot beet boot…

Also, evidently there’s a commercial for the game. And it shows a group of girls playing the game, having a blast, solving puzzles. Is this being marketed as a girl’s game and easy one, too? I should hope not. I think anyone can play it so long as they have patience.

Oh, and one puzzle solved resulted in creating a blocky dachshund. Tara liked that.

As for The Saboteur, it’s an open-world game set in Paris, France during World War II. Yup, a WWII that is not a first-person shooter. Crazy, right? What it is though is stylish and arcade-like. You play an Irishman named Sean who hates Nazis and ends up in France due to an earlier run-in with the Aryan race. He meets some other fellow Nazi haters, and the plot is on: uh, kill Nazis. Haven’t gotten too far in this one yet, but it seems like there’s a ton of things to see, do, and collect. Looking forward to exploring the world a bit more, but I can already tell that I like the map in black, white, yellow, and red much more than in full color. Once color returns, the game world sort of loses something.

Also, I ended up buying one month of Xbox Live Gold for $1.00 thanks to a spotlight advertisement. I mean, that’s a pretty rockin’ deal and so I figured to give it a shot. Now I have exactly a month to try and get some more multiplayer-only Achievements in some of my games and maybe try out co-op in Borderlands. Will have to plan accordingly.

Either way, that’s it for May. No more purchases until the end of June hits with LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4.