The digital delights of Sony’s scrumptious PlayStation Network service know no bounds. Aside from letting punters compete in online gaming, stream films, browse the Internet and more, its premier attraction rests in the copious supply of downloadable games ripe for the picking. From PSN exclusives to PSOne Classics, minis and plain old add-on content, Sony’s online space is chock full of goodies battling it out for your hard-earned digital dollars.
Welcome back to another installment of Inside PlayStation Network, where every Monday – Friday we’ll pluck a PSN release—be it new or old—and put it in the spotlight for a thorough dissection. Fancy getting a new PSN game but don’t know what one to plump for? Perhaps this feature will help. Didn’t realize that a game was available in your region until now? We've got you covered. Or, perhaps you were musing over what those lucky Japanese folk were tucking into over in the Land of the Rising Sun? You can be sure our coverage will extend to those rare regional exclusives as much as those firmly embedded on the public consciousness.
Today, we turn our attention to the all-time classic shooter, Wolfenstein 3D.
Developer: id Softare
Region(s) available: North America, Europe
Wolfenstein needs no introduction for old farts such as the core team here at PlayStation Universe – we grew up with id Software’s seminal FPS, after all. Still, no doubt some of you were but a twinkle in your mother’s eyes when the game stormed the market back in 1992, and therefore might benefit from some explanation as to what all the fuss is about. To put it mildly, Wolfenstein 3D is considered the godfather of FPS; nothing like it had ever been seen before at the time of its release, and its polished paradigm for years remained the bread-and-butter template for all subsequent releases in the genre. It’s a classic, in every sense of the word.
Playing as William “BJ” Blazkowicz, gamers plough through the eponymous, Nazi-filled castle blasting legions of bad guys while gobbling up turkey legs. The passing of time has invariably rendered the game’s visuals archaic by today’s standards (it’s nearly two decades old, give it a break!), but that doesn’t stop it from still remaining honest-to-good fun. You’ll spend the majority of time vanquishing Nazis with either your knife or one of three firearms available, though the game also offers some surprising bouts of exploration, too.
The maze-like structure of the castle offers ample opportunity to have a bit of a nose around, searching for hidden pathways littered throughout the depths of the fortress. Nostalgia comes by the bucket load, from the blocky, animated buckets of claret filling the screen to BJ’s ugly mug shot in the corner of the screen, which becomes increasingly bloodied as he incurs more damage. The game controls as you’d expect, with the left stick used to move and the right stick used to aim. However, you won’t be looking anywhere but horizontally – there’s no Y axis here.
You’ll need a good memory though, as Wolfenstein doesn’t have an in-game map so players must keep a mental log of the place they’ve visited to avoid getting lost. The PSN/XBL re-release throws in a couple of new features too, such as online leaderboards that track the number of points you’ve accumulated through looting Nazi gold.
Tune in again same time tomorrow for another peak Inside PlayStation Network.