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Platform

Xbox 360

 

Genre

Shooter

 

Publisher

Activision

 

Developer

Raven Software

 

ESRB

M (Mature)

 

Released

August 18, 2009

 

 

- Keeps the nostalgic feel in a modern package

- The mix of “old” and “supernatural” work well here

- Solid multiplayer

 

 

- Story feels contrived and a bit boring

- Short single player campaign, although not uncommon in the genre

- Difficulty level is inconsistent

 

 

Review: Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood (360)

Review: Battlefield 1943 (360)

Review: Call of Duty: World at War (360)

 

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Wolfenstein

Score: 8.0 / 10

 

A lot of today’s gamers will remember Wolfenstein 3D from 1992 that started out on DOS, but did you know the roots of the game – or at least the name – go back even further than that to 1981 on the Commodore, Apple and Atari computers with a game called “Castle Wolfenstein” which was created by the now defunct Muse software. The developers at ID Software remembered that old game and were inspired by it to create Wolfenstein 3D. They even received permission to use the name, which of course has become synonymous with first person shooters and great multiplayer action.

 

wolfenstein          wolfenstein

 

In this regard, this 2009 version inspired by the original lives up to its name. The multiplayer is solid with three different modes (Team Deathmatch, Objective, and Stopwatch) to keep you busy. The eight included maps will keep you busy with all kinds of action and the special powers (which we’ll discuss in a moment) make it

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even more interesting. It’s not the best multiplayer action out there, but you’ll have a great time with this no matter what.

 

The story revolves around the Nazis developing a weapon using something called Black Sun energy. As B.J. Blazkowicz, you’ll work with others to uncover a mysterious artifact that will give you special abilities that will

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help you defeat the Nazis forever.

 

The special powers come out as what are called veil powers. When you enter the veil you are in essence entering another world that exists within the regular world. The screen turns a greenish colour as you do and you will uncover special secret doors and be able to see other creatures within the world in this mode. You’ll also uncover other special features like being able to slow down time which you’ll need to progress through the single player campaign which will take you around the six hour mark to complete.

 

I found the veil to be an interesting idea although it tends to wash out the graphics for long periods of time. Although they aren’t spectacular they are passable it seems strange to cover them up so much during the regular gameplay.

 

wolfenstein          wolfenstein

 

This game is basically a straight up shooter. Other than the veil powers, you’re not going to have to deal with any complicated cover systems or drive vehicles, but instead you’ll explore a city that works like a hub where you are essentially in an open ended world. The difference is that this world is relatively small (taking only a few minutes to get from one end of the map to another) but you do have some degree of freedom in choosing which missions you accomplish first or at all in some cases.

 

The weapons are also fairly standard fair, with the most creativity coming out with the veil powers. It’s also extremely satisfying, when the Black Sun energy has your enemies floating in the air, to be able to pick them off in slow motion only to watch them fall to timely death when gravity is returned to normal. There is no luck of blood and guts in this game, I found myself letting out an unexpected sound at times when the level of violence was more than I was expecting.

 

Although you can’t use everything in your environment to fight with, Wolfenstein does a good job of letting you blow up a number of things that add to the realism of what you are doing. I found myself blowing things up just for the fun of it from time to time just to see what would happen.

 

That is really the bottom line when it comes to this game. It’s not the most advanced shooter available, nor the best looking or the best sounding for that matter. However, it brings back a great nostalgic feeling and pays honest homage to the original. In all elements it is above average but most importantly, it’s a fun game to play. Really, that’s all that matters, isn’t it?

 

- Syd Bolton

(September 17, 2009)

 


 Syd Bolton surrounds himself in classic games at the Personal Computer Museum (www.pcmuseum.ca) in Brantford, Ontario, Canada.

 

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