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Wolfenstien ….. In words and pictures.

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Now I am going to go back in time when I first ever saw a PC in the house that belonged to a friend of the family and at this point  I was a big console player and was enjoying my Sonic the Hedgehog’s and Super Mario World’s when I was offered to play Wolfenstien 3D, the friend of the family said to me that this would be unlike anything I have ever played before and he was right, gone were flat two dimensional plains of platform fun, I was now immersed in this world where I was wandering corridors and the bases of the Nazi regime in a attempt to stop the evil plans of Adolf Hitler, and to say back then I was blown away was a total understatement.

For the first time for me this was what I soon found out, a first person shooter, a game where you see through the eyes of the character, yes sure we had the likes of operation wolf and lethal enforcers but they were games on rails and there was a kind of no exploration required feel to it, these games simply went the way the screen dragged you, but this I had to find my own way out of each of the levels and spent many a hour lost in what seems now such simplistic levels looking for that golden key that would open that last door so I could get to the elevator and see what challenges awaited me in the next level of the game, and also finding those secret passages that would allow me to steal the riches that had been horded and stick them into my retirement fund when all is said and done.

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And so I continued for well over a week on and off until the final showdown with Hitler and after defeating him I felt awesome…and you know what I found out then I had only played half the game and there was more to come…well as soon as I found a friend who had the full 60 level game at least, but I felt satisfied…but that was 20 years ago how dose the game hold up today?

 

Well after picking it up of steam for a bank breaking 74p I took a trip down memory lane and even now this game never disappoints me, the blocky graphics, the cries of the german officers when they have spotted you and the music of either military march or dark and drab underground labs, so what is there is no accurate scale weapons or perks I got hold of my pixalated chaingun (yes I still remembered where it was hidden on the second level after all this time) and went on a nazi killing spree with a body count that would make a Stallone or Arnie movie look tame.

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What instantly took my notice was that todays shooters seem to lack a main thing which made Wolfenstien work so well … exploration … which is what made up a lot of Wolfenstien’s charm, where are the keys nowadays, where are the secured doors that need those keys, a deep feeling inside myself made this game feel even better, this simple feature made you look around the levels then back to that door you found which you can now unlock with said shiny gold key you just aquired be it from laying on the floor or off some soldier you just stuck a hail of bullets into.

 

And what about your opponents, well you are the lone soldier B.J. Blazcowicz, who being a American and having the most un American name and his story to topple Hitler. If only it was that easy back in world war two they probably would have never made this game. And so you are out defeating various types of troops including basic grunts, blue uniformed machine gun troopers, white uniformed storm troopers (ha ha no not star wars kind) and then you have frankenstien looking things in the second episode and strange Hitler ghosts in the third episode, and no proton pack weapon spare and then chuck in some attack dogs and your all set.

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And what about your arsenal, well you have a knife and a pistol but you can soon get your hands on a machine gun then the big daddy chain gun or basically  going from single shot to auto shot to making swiss cheese out of your enemies and it all just comes down to how fast you want to burn off your ammo and trust me while you could run around all day long on the easiest skill level with the chain gun doing the same on “Death Incarnate” will see you desperately shiving the german’s kidneys as they turn you into the attack dogs dinner faster than you can think.

 

Now as time went on Wolfenstien made its way onto many other systems and all pretty good ports, the macintosh version was praised for having enhanced graphics but criticized for the sprites only having one face direction which was straight at you, removing the chance you could creep up on your opponents which was possible due the PC’s 8 way sprites which allowed them to turn away from you, also with Nintendo being so heavy on censorship all elements of the nazi symbolism and the dogs were removed form the game and Hitler’s sprites were altered but no matter which system the game was on there was not a bad conversion of this game and with releases including Steam PSN and Xbox Live plus iOS and Android for mobile version at very reasonable prices  anytime is a good time to pick up this classic and enjoy one of the games that inspired a lot of todays modern day shooters.

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But also PC owners there is also NewWolf, a small program which gets the game running in windows, and also add a host of features which include  graphics smoothing and customizable controls you can get it at

 

http://newwolf.sourceforge.net/

10 thoughts on “Wolfenstien ….. In words and pictures.

  1. darren says:

    Great article. My first experience of a fps was Doom on the Snes and I was instantly hooked. Absolutely agree about the fps of today, they might as well be on rails. The last fps I’ve played was Bad Company 2 and Crysis 2 which both have the illusion of exploration but again suffer from corridor maps.

    It sort of reminds me of Ikea, where you are herded through a one way system past pretty looking scenery. In fact maybe these games should be called fpis – “first person Ikea simulators”

    • ZXSpecstar says:

      Call of Duty: Ikea Warfare now that sounds like a awesome game, I have nothing against linear FPS games but at least make it look interesting and have multiple ways of reaching the goal that they want you to get to. Valve perfected the formula with Half Life and to me no one has beaten them the only game that will beat it will hopefully be Half Life 3.

      Talking of Doom I might be trying to figure out how Skulltag works and if successful will eb hosting a good old doom deathmatch night whos game?

  2. Essentially some of today’s RPGs are fps games with exploration. I think for example Fallout 3 demonstrates this and is worth playing.

    • ZXSpecstar says:

      totally agree with you Dirk and even better example look at Skyrim could we be seeing the merging or fps and rpg, because it sure as well looks like it is working

  3. Andy says:

    I got to agree with dirk, fallout 3 is a superb fps RPG and it works amazingly well.

    Fps have gotton stale n the do mostly stick to the on rails formula, it’s just needs that someone to dare to be different.

    Bio shock was a great example of how it can be done.

    But yeah maybe I’m biased but I prefer wolfenstien,doom and duke over the modern fps any day.

    • ZXSpecstar says:

      I totally forgot about Bioshock as that was a great example of a old school fps given a lick of paint to make it look good well we have Bioshock Infinite out soon maybe they will give us another shot of the good old stuff

      • darren says:

        My problem with Bioshock is the same as a lot of fps, new and old. It has a phenomenal first section and then falls flat straight after. Don’t get me wrong, there are some good later sections, but it never quite manages to hit the same level of quality as the beginning.

        I’m pretty sure this is a case of showing your best hand for the demo, but I would prefer a consistent experience.

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