I remember spending hours and hours playing this as a kid, great fun. They don't make 'em like this anymore - in fact all the latest first person shooters are just too hard for me!
With the EDL taking the opportunity to whip up support after the latest riots, it seems a fitting time to resurrect the memory of shooting fascists. Indeed, it must be heartwarming for id Software to know it invented the gaming genre that is now outselling porn: Wolfenstein 3D was the definitive first-person shooter. …
Wolfenstein 3D for DOS is still available for $15??!! Really?? Hasn't everyone downloaded it for free yet. Seriously, though, I did think it was a freebie now.
WRT not being able to aim vertically, there's no need. Even in Doom. The engine only requires you to aim in the horizontal direction of the baddie as the vertical component is non-existent in Wolfenstein and forced in Doom. Now, Hexen on the other hand...
Still love the game and will play it at tea-time (like the old days).
I had a lot of fun recently replaying Wolfenstein 3D on the iPhone. Certainly it's no match for titles like NOVA2 or Infinity Blade in the graphics department, but I found it very amusing listening to the varied screams that the Nazis would make as I gunned them down. Then of course there's mecha-Hitler, who was also hilarious (and difficult to kill).
It might be dated graphically, but it's still fun to play I think (particularly on the iPhone where John Carmack has made some excellent tweaks to the gameplay).
Not to mention all the solid poly games on the Amiga. Okay, it wasn't powerful enough for doing texture mapping (largely down to it's graphics chip being designed for smooth scrolling) but they were around years before.
Starglider 2 and Carrier Command are a couple of examples.
I imagine there's a lot of PC flight sims that were earlier too.
Ah, my ill-spent youth! Many an hour was enjoyed playing Wolf 3D. You've not mentioned two of my favourite aspects of the game though: finding the secrets (runnings along a wall hammering spacebar) and the ridculous noise it made when you pick up treasure!
For future installments might i recommend the following:
- Commander Keen
- Raptor: COTS
Man, that brings back memories
I remember dialling up with a 9600BPS modem and downloading that from a BBS, it took an eternity
Playing it took hours and it was just groundbreaking compared to most other games at the time
I spent hours walking along the walls, pushing the space bar in order to reveal all those hidden tunnels. I recall finding a network of tunnels that lead to "Aarvark" being written on a wall with a number to call. Was this a mystery prize?
My fondest memory of Wolfenstien 3D was at a friend's house, he had an AdLib sound card fitted in his 286/AT and when I pulled the trigger, the bleeps and blips were replaced by real bangs and booms. Frikkin awesome! Needless to say, I soon fitted a sound card in my 286.
Then came the mods, the pictures of the Furher and Swastikas were replaced with photos of nekkid ladies... oh joy :¬)
The successors like Doom, Heretic, Quake, Duke Nukem 3D and so forth left Wolfenstein 3D sidelined until the "Return to Castle Wolfenstein" was released almost a decade after the original. As great as RTCW was, it just didn't have character of the original
Thanks El Reg for taking an old man back to those pioneering days of PC gaming,
And thanks to American McGee and ID Siftware for raising the bar in what could be achieved on 286 and 386 machines with basic colour graphics cards..
I think I have tears in the corners of my eyes...
getting this as a shareware title with just the first bunch of floors. It was amazing back in the day, but I think it's one I'll leave alone for fear of tarnishing the memory.
I also seem to remember having to use the spacebar to open various hidden areas in the walls.
It's wonderful to see the progression from this game to Doom to DN3d to what we have today.
Any chance of reviewing "Midwinter"? It was a pretty awesome game back in the day and did the first person thing (allbeit skiing and shooting) before Wolfenstein.
The big engine jump was Doom->Quake I think, which introduced that first-person swaying motion. Jaw dropping at the time. Wolf may be dated, but was efficiant coded. Modern FPS games require about 500 x the memory and processor speed. I find their universes to be much too big sometimes, so large as to induce a feeling of pointlessness as you walk round them.
I remember when t'was but a 2D game on t'Apple ][+
Real Jerry voices wi' nowt but a speaker... a right proper game, on a proper computer!
Kids these days, don't know they're born!
Hand-coded assembly and games that didn't crash! Them was times when publishers had real respect for their customers.
I think the character in this was linked to the character in doom, didn't they have the same name or anything?
Anyone else remember eating dog food if your health was <8% and running along the walls with spacebar held down to open the secret passages? THere were 10 levels, 1-9 where 9 was when you took down old adolf, 10 was a bonus level which you got to from level 1, just after you got the schmeisser there was a room on the right with a secret room and in the secret room was a door to level 10 iirc. God I loved that game
I still have the install media in fact. Doom rocked and then, and then... Quake came out and you actually had to aim. Lordy... was an officer in a Quake Clan (Clan of the Camper - CotC) for years. Spent so much time playing it caused serious issues with the 1st wife (upgraded to a gamer wife at a later date lol).
Friend came in from Cali and we installed a Quake server under my desk during my tech support manager years at an ISP with a DS3 connection- sounded like a helicopter landing on boot up. See, it was a Pentium 166 w/64MB ram (expensive!) with overheating issues so my buddy, in his infinite wisdom, brought some medical-grade equipment fans that we cut holes in the case to install on the top and sides - no guards either - grabbed it wrong while running during installation and ended up with stitches lmao... One time had 12 buddies come in from different states for a LAN party at the same ISP (at which time I had become a sysadmin), played for three days straight raping and owning Quake servers from dual homed DS3's.
Ah, those were some times - no DSL, ISDN/frame relays were $$$, and 56k modems were king.
which WP says came before DN3D and both of which were graphically fantastic for the time:
Rise of the Triad (intended as a sequel to Wolf3D) which featured some of the best weapons ever included in a FPS game, character selection, and was extremely silly and fun.
Terminator Future Shock which I remember finding insanely difficult, also very fun, and with free look.
I've seen ROTT in the AppStore, but not purchased it as of yet, I loved that game though and would highly advise anyone to check it out.
You can download ROTT free from the Ubuntu Software Centre, and probably other Linux repos too. Not sitting in front of it now, but I'm fairly sure it's the full version and not the shareware one.
Always loved the suicide suggestions it made when you went to exit the game. Games need a sense of humour, even if it's darker than a black hole.
This was the first game i ever bought, i remember it taking an eternity to arrive as it had to be posted from the USA.
The only thing it missed was being able to do the whole strafe left and right thing now assumed to be the default today.
Twas also the game that practically forced me to get a SoundBlaster 2.0 card in all its 8-bit glory. Just to hear Nazi after Nazi in their death throes.
On the Spectrum and C64 had shooting when in flight mode, and labarynthine underground bunkers that I tried to map. Never did finish it, but I did succeed in delivering "vital 12939 supplies" to a space station once. As this was a wireframe object I discovered that if you walked round the other side of it that 12939 written backwards is PEPSI!
and remembered the first level as though I had played it the day before. No doubt I am far from being the oldest gamer, but I was 41 when Wolfenstein was released, and just yesterday I began replaying Ultima Underworld 1, which was released a couple of months before Wolfenstein. The new 3D look was implemented in both, but the games couldn't have been more different, and whereas I doubt I could play Wolfenstein all the way through again, UU1 has immediately drawn me in. I wish modern games had the same playability instead of just being good looking.
Cue someone rushing to tell me how good <insert game name here> is. :)
I was on an internship from college in the mid-1990s. After lunch one day I settled into a side room with a huge pile of old PCs and the task of hooking each of them up to a monitor and keyboard so that I could wipe the hard drives before they went to some charitable "PCs for kids" organization.
One of them, an old 286, had a copy of this game on it. I'd heard of it, but as an Amiga fanboi I had no time for "crappy PCs" with their agricultural off-the-shelf hardware and even worse excuse for an operating system. I fired it up anyway out of idle curiosity.
No more hard drives were wiped that afternoon.
was Atari Battlezone in 1980. You drove a tank around an outline-vector landscape with cubes, pyramids and enemy tanks littered around the place. Other "3D" games that predated Midi Maze were 3D Pacman, Elite, Mercenary: Escape From Targ, and SubLogic Flight Simulator, all of which were released on the Commodore 64 in or before 1985.
I also remember a Wolfenstein lookalike known as Gloom, released on the Amiga in the early 1990s. My friend and I played it for months on our A1200s, until we had choreographed the exact sequence of moves required to clear every level and complete it without losing a life. It had 21 levels, in 3 areas of 7 levels each known as Spacehulk, Gothic Tomb and Hell, and we could do a full clear (that's killing every mob in the game including trash and bosses, rendering the levels what we called "safe for children"!) inside of an hour. Fun days, indeed!
The infamous one was the big secret wall maze with one correct path through it, which revealed a wall saying "CALL APOGEE SAY AARDWOLF" (IIRC). It was meant to be a kind of hidden contest; the first person to do it won $1,000 or something. It was one of the earliest hacked contests, as someone hacked the game resource file and found the texture map, which blew the whole contest. They issued an update which made the maze impossible to navigate, so no-one would find it...
BTW, I believe I'm still, technically, the official Wolfenstein 3-D FAQ maintainer. That thing could really use an update.
One of the founders of id Software who used to use a tag line something like "The computer is the game" was upset with a few of us for making our own map editors. He came around and by the time doom came out and became impatient with us not figuring out the details to the point where he sent a C structure to help point us in the right direction.
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