At PAX East, Nintendo gave us hands-on time with the Switch version of Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, last year’s story-heavy action showcase from Bethesda.
The demo we played started about half an hour into the game, where protagonist BJ Blaskowicz obtains the ability to start moving around in the game’s action sequences. The first area had Fergus Reid, BJ’s partner-in-arms from the army through the resistance, imploring BJ to take back the resistance U-boat from Nazi clutches.
On first glance, the game looks like the PC version on lower settings. It makes a lot of the same compromises that Doom made on the Switch last year, lowering resolution and depth of field to run at a consistent albeit decidedly lower framerate. When just walking around, this is not terribly noticeable, but getting close to walls or character models like Fergus bring you back to the reality that you’re playing a game where the baseline was PlayStation 4 and Xbox One now crammed on to a Switch.
That said, the game still plays like Wolfenstein II, for better or for worse. The introduction to the game still has BJ stealthing around and taking out Nazi officers before they can raise an alarm or, more likely, simply going in guns blazing and hope for the best. Both strategies function the same on Switch as they do on other consoles, though the system’s slightly larger deadzone on its analog sticks makes fine adjustments harder. While we did not get a chance to try the motion controls out, the slight wrist movements involved there should compensate adequately to help make more accurate shots.
We also asked whether the game still features the ill-fitting cover of We’re Not Gonna Take It. The Nintendo representatives could not confirm or deny, but did say the game is identical content-wise to its brethren.
There’s still no word when Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus will launch for the Switch, but all indications are that it will come out this year. For people looking to take Wolfenstein’s brutal kills and story on the go, the Switch version should function fine, just with a lot of the expected compromises.