Game demos are rarely surprising. Not really, anyway. They’re not meant to be.

A game demo is meant to sell you on a game, and to do so it usually checks off the most obvious boxes—reveal a few weapons, walk the player through a combat or stealth sequence (or both), show them the game plays okay, maybe pick one or two “Very Big Story Moments” to tease at bigger revelations, and end on a small hook. Accessible. Familiar. Relatable. But not surprising.

Which is why Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus was such a joy to demo at E3 last week, and ultimately wound up being one of our favorite games of E3 2017. As soon as I’d started playing, I knew I was in for something special—something as creative as any sequence in Wolfenstein: The New Order, and that’s saying quite a lot given the heights that game reached at times. (Literally.)

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