...But enough about the General Election!!! Ha ha. Political satire. Do you see? We're saying that the Conservatives are a bit like the Nazis. Is that funny? It's not really is it? It's a bit lazy and obvious.
Unfortunately, having grown up in the 1980s, being brainwashed by the comedian Ben Elton and his alternative ilk, that sort of anti-Tory comedy rhetoric is reflexive, regardless how how deep it might run in our veins.
Still, it was weird that result though, wasn't it? If you were watching it through the prism of our Twitter feed you'd think the entire UK was voting Labour. We guess that among whatever the Twitter demographic is, admitting you vote Conservative is akin to confessing you're carnally attracted to worms.
Sorry. What? You came here for a game review? Fine...
Wolfenstein: The Old Blood is a standalone mini-prequel to the well-regarded Wolfenstein: The New Order. We're back in an alternate reality where the Nazis won World War II by combining black magic with technology, like a bunch of goose-stepping Dynamos. Playing as series stalwart BJ Blazkowicz, you infiltrate Castle Wolfenstein on a secret mission. Your cover swiftly blown, you get thrown into a dungeon, and... well... you know the sort of thing. It's stuff like that.
We had a bit of a soft spot for Wolfenstein: The New Order.
Which was weird, because prior to release, every time we got a whiff of it we braced for something mediocre - the very epitome of a me-too, by-the-numbers, first-person shooter, with a hackneyed, alternate, 'What If The Nazis Won?' setting.
Admittedly, the first level or two met our expectations precisely... but then something happened. The game opened up, it introduced a level of invention, wit, and intelligence that we hadn't expected... and we started loving it. Somehow it managed to transcend what could've been a schlocky, pulpy setting, and inject moments of genuine emotion and tension into proceedings, bolstered by solid and varied gunplay, supported in turn by a solid stealth structure.
Were we hungry for more? Achtung! Yes we were.
It slightly pains us to report that The Old Blood is more along the lines of what we'd originally been expecting from The New Order. There are a few new ideas in there - a multi-purpose "pipe" that's part crowbar, part climbing tool, part stabby-thing. But - presumably due to the reduced running time, the reduced development resources - this feels more route-one, more obvious.
There's a sense of deja-vu at points - areas that feel like lesser interpretations of its parent game - and at other times it feels like they're dragging things out, in a Halo 1 sort of way. The biggest shame is that it's virtually impossible to get through the game without going in all guns blazing: the stealth, that gave the original game a nice sense of ebb-and-flow, just isn't present here.
If you're lucky, you might get to pop off one or two silenced pistol shots before you're spotted by an unseen enemy, the alarms start buzzing, and you're besieged by enemies. And yet, the levels feel more claustrophobic - oddly, evoking the maze-like structure of the original Wolfenstein 3D. Consequently, the pacing is more chaotic and relentless, and far less considered, than before.
It's a shame that they didn't use the opportunity to do something a bit smarter, a bit more experimental with this mini adventure - and made a virtue of the stripped-back time and budget - rather than going the more-of-the-same-but-not-as-good route.
Still, if you liked The New Order, this is likely to give you a quick, if ultimately hollow, fix for under fifteen quid. You can't really complain about that. Well, you could. You can do what you like.
This isn't Nazi Germany, apparently...
SUMMARY: Cheap and cheerful, but little more.
SCORE: Three Reichs out of Five Reichs.