Many Gen-Xers remember Castle Wolfenstein that launched on the Apple 2 computer in 1981, the game is as old as Shigeru Miyamoto’s Donkey Kong. The sequel , Beyond Castle Wolfenstein, was released in 1984. One thing remains the same, the majority of the game has been centered around the main character B.J Blazkowicz. B.J Blazkowicz is stuck in a world where Nazis were lucrative in their experiments with the occult and creating monsters to aid in world domination.
In 1991, Wolfenstein 3D sends B.J Blazkowicz armed with a gun through eight floors of hell. The Millennials made the game an astronomical success, mainly because it was unlike any game out there. Wolfenstein 3D was one of the first games that hosted the run and gun game style; hence, the game helped shaped the First Person Shooter (FPS) genre. Following Wolfenstein 3D came Spear of Destiny which debut in 1992. The game was exactly like the previous version, but with a new story and new levels.
Ten years later in 2001 they are sending Army Ranger, B.J Blazkowicz out again in Return to Castle Wolfenstein. He is tasked with the job of thwarting Heinrich Himmler’s genetic experiments. Through genetic experimentation and engineering, Himmler tries to raise an unstoppable army to obliterate the allies once and for all. In 2003, they give the bad ass Army Ranger a rest. Enemy Territory has a character progression model similar to Call of Duty. Enemies are killed and tasks are performed in this online multi-player game. Wolfenstein RPG was released for smart phones in 2008, here they bring the notorious Army Ranger back in to play with a Wolfenstein 3D type of play without the 8-bit visuals.
Wolfenstein released in 2009 was a sad disappointment, the game was glitchy and the development was rushed. Once again B.J Blazkowicz is the main character in the story. The concept of the story was great, Nazi’s discover another dimension that is highly unstable. But you may want to skip right over it and go for the 2014 release of Wolfenstein: The New World Order, where protagonist B.J Blazkowicz is involved in a huge change from the dude you just play to a real character that has made some huge developments.
The 2014 release of Wolfenstein: The New World Order had this house of Wolfenstein fans hooked to the playstation for hours. Once again the single player story brings in war veteran B.J Blazkowicz. In this game, they really make the effort to develop the characters personality from “the dude you just play” to the dude that kicks some ass but has a life. For this writer, that is a must for game play. The game puts B.J Blazkowicz in situations where he is a little distressed. The character also communicates some of his inner thoughts in short monologues which gives us a bit of an inside view of the ranger being traumatized by some of his previous experiences. The developers certainly did an amazing job of making B.J Blazkowicz easy to identify with in the game, by giving us morality choices in the game. Once again, the Nazis have developed new and advanced technologies, enabling them to turn the tide against the Allies. B.J Blazkowicz and two others organize a massive raid against the fortress run by his nemesis, General Wilhelm “Deathshead” Strasse. All three are captured and brought to a laboratory where B.J Blazkowicz must make the choice which one of his comrades he will brutally kill..
Wolfenstein: The Old Blood was released on May 5th 2015. B.J Blazkowicz is on a mission to recover documents that may locate his nemesis Wilhelm “Deathshead” Strasse. The game is split into two episodes. The first B.J Blazkowicz must infiltrate and escape Castle Wolfenstein before a paranormal uprising occurs at a Nazi dig site. At every level there is a bed that transports B.J Blazkowicz into a nightmare. The sequence where you can play through one of the levels of Wolfenstein 3D. This is the first of historical game play pieces throughout the game, screen shots of the classic game are hidden throughout the levels. Wolfenstein: The Old Blood is a prequel to the New Order, the game is designed to flesh out the New Order’s back-story and provide a welcoming entry point for Gen-Z players. New players can easily begin with The Old Blood and transition into the New Order since there are plenty of for shadowing moments in the prequel for those who played last year’s game.
This article was written by Laurell Morse, a writer for dusk magazine.