Co-op makes the frantic action of Wolfenstein: Youngblood even better

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Co-op makes the frantic action of Wolfenstein: Youngblood even better

The Blazkowicz twins’s endearing rapport blends brilliantly with the series’ silky smooth gunplay

B.J. Blazkowicz is the FPS genre’s premiere lone-wolf hero. Unlike the grizzled Nazi-killing star, his twin daughter protégés appreciate the value of teamwork. Wolfenstein: Youngblood improves upon the iconic series’ silky gunplay with dynamic co-op action and protagonists with an infectious rapport.

A recent hands-on session focuses heavily on Jessie (“Jes”) and Zofia’s (“Soph”) backstory and an intense assault on a Nazi zeppelin. The flashbacks reveal how B.J. and Anya groomed their daughters to survive in a harsh world. Soph wails on a punching bag and screams as Anya pushes her past her limits. Jess learns to dial in a shot while hunting boar as B.J. explains how to hone her killer instincts. As with the past two Wolfenstein games, the character interactions a refreshingly authentic with a healthy dose of absurdity (after her first Nazi kill, Soph cheers, abruptly pukes, then cheers some more).

Wolfenstein: Youngblood on PS4

The quips and colourful dialogue adds welcome colour to Wolfenstein: Youngblood’s reliable gunplay. Stealth tactics or all-out firefights are still your two options for tackling the airship infiltration mission, but the twins’ power suits layer on more gameplay options from the get-go.

Double jump together around vertical locales, cloak up for synced takedowns, and spend ability points to gain skills like dual-wielding or knife-throwing. An RPG-like leveling system adds a rewarding drip-feed of overarching progression to experience.

These new features, along with the new two-player co-op, elevate Wolfenstein’s gameplay to new heights. Confronting a heavily-armoured Nat zi flamethrower trooper is more manageable when your partner can flank him and burst his gas tank. The sting of falling in battle is smoothed over by having your partner nearby for a quick revive. A treacherous boss battle against a power suit-equipped general is more dynamic thanks to his aggro being split between both players. Every aspect of Wolfenstein’s challenging, top-tier gunplay benefits from having a friend along for the ride.

Wolfenstein: Youngblood

A few more highlights and random observations from my time with the game:

  • Enemies now have health bars above their head – useful info for strategising with a friend against heavily-armored foes.
  • Leveling up mid-firefight restores your health, a classic RPG rite that’s handy in a pinch.
  • Melee is more powerful than ever. Your hatchet or knife is invaluable for close-quarters executions.
  • A “ping” system allows players to quickly tag ammo, armor, and other pickups in the area so their partner can find them.
  • Each player gets their own pickups (e.g. that piece of body armor in the corner can be grabbed by both players – no squabbling!)
  • The twins each have colorful emotes they can direct at one another for helpful buffs (e.g. Jes raising devil horns boosts Soph’s armor).
  • If a downed partner isn’t revived before a timer runs out, one of the players’ shared lives will be spent.

Prepare to team up with your most trusted co-op buddy and find B.J. Blazkowicz when Wolfenstein: Youngblood launches on PS4 26th July.

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  • does anyone remember “brute force” or the “conflict” series of games were 4 of your buddies could play all at once [need i say borderlands]. Hell even nintendo did that with zelda (although the way they did was way too expensive for some).

    And now we’re back to 2 man co-op, wow our limits are so great…. what next? back to 16 max for death mat… oh wait… seriously . it’s a step forward for wolfie [nothing beats xbox live Return to Castle Wolfenstein though] but a step backwards for gaming in general. It’s 2019.

    • Stop complaining Propinquity. I rather play this as a 2-player co-op because it seems this is a tight, storydriven single (or 2 people co-op) player game. I have no idea why you would want 4 or 16 players in a game like this. I think you need to go back to Cod or something, but this ain’t that kind of game.

    • Back to two player and back to moronic comments on the PSN blog. Gz

  • I wonder how this fits with ID’s original version of Wolfenstein.

    In ID’s games he has a son called Arthur, who is the father of Commander Keen, who in turn is the father of the main character of Doom. Though I guess the story of this game (or any ID game) matters not much at all.

  • Shame they couldn’t have kept it single-player only like Machinegames’ previous Wolfenstein games. In my experience the story isn’t as good in a co-op centric game as it is in a single-player only game.

    • Hopefully they wont ruin the complex plot involving the deep and meaningful reasons why you are killing 10000 people every level with akimbo machineguns..

    • I’ll take having a half-decent plot over just running around “maps” shooting other players in the face any day of the week. If just blowing stuff up was all I was looking for in a game I wouldn’t be playing single-player FPS games.

    • If you want a “half decent plot” then you shouldn’t be playing Wolfenstein games. The whole series is about silly mindless b-movie action with puddle deep stereotype characters.

      It’s like being concerned that the plot of Sharknado 4 isn’t going to be as good.

    • Well a B-movie plot in Wolfenstein is good enough for me anyway and I have played the series so I know what it’s “about”. I never said Wolfenstein took itself seriously. I will still play Wolfenstein: Youngblood at some point but the co-op focus has moved it to the back of the line for me.

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