You might have missed the release of Wolfenstein: Cyberpilot last Friday, overshadowed by the simultaneous release of another Wolfenstein game, Youngblood. This might have been by design because, as unfortunate as it is to say, Cyberpilot is a disappointment.
Cyberpilot should probably be considered more of a tech demo than a fully-fledged game, particularly at its $29.95 price point. In the end, the experience barely justifies even that cost. There's four distinct levels — you'll use a Panzerhund, a hacker drone and a giant Zitadelle to fight the Nazi forces, with the final level allowing you access to all three.
By the time you're familiar with each machine and well into the groove, the game ends. You'll be lucky to get three hours out of Cyberpilot at a stretch. And that's a shame because Cyberpilot has potential, as short as it is. Who wouldn't want to smash through the streets of Germany astride a giant metal doggy?
That's not even mentioning the best part. As you trample through the crisply-rendered Nazi-occupied streets of Germany on a semi-invulnerable Panzerhund, you get to set Nazis on fire. Lots of Nazis, and lots of fire. If you really want, you can set a lot of Nazis alight with a lot of fire — the Panzerhund's inbuilt panic button sends out a giant explosion, and they all go down in a hail of fire-y wrath. Fantastisch.
It does come with a minor caveat, though. While the Panzerhund level is good fun, it's also a bit empty. Enemies tend to come in small waves, usually in lots of five or so. Sometimes they're accompanied by a larger squad, their own Panzerhund, or a Zitadelle robot. They all go down just as easily, making the whole experience a bit lacklustre. More than that, the action is almost entirely linear, with just one narrow path to follow.
I'm here to kill Nazis, damn it, but Cyberpilot rarely gave me enough to feel satisfied.
Beyond all the Nazi shish kebab-ing, Wolfenstein: Cyberpilot also features a hub world where you repair equipment between levels. This was, I shit you not, the hardest part of the game. I spent a good 10 minutes pawing my useless hands at this one crowbar and it still would not lift off the metal platform. It got to the point where I was grabbing every other thing around it and just yeeting the bits and pieces at the crowbar in the hopes of dislodging it.
The problem, as far as I could tell, was that it was just outside my PlayStation camera's field of view, so my arm kept getting caught by the invisible barrier that formed Cyberpilot's world. At that point, my bean bag was already backed up against my bookshelf, and I couldn't go back any further. So, instead of realigning my VR scope like a sane person, I pushed and prodded and scraped and pulled at this stupid crowbar until finally, my awkward VR hands grasped the handle. And then I dropped it.
I dropped it.
All I could do was watch is it disappeared into the black abyss below me — only to reappear in the exact same position as earlier, just outside the reaches of my flailing arms.
At that point, I turned off the game.
Curse you, Wolfenstein: Cyberpilot, curse you and your strange, ungainly hands.