Castle Wolfenstein immediately had a revolutionary impact on the gaming industry as a whole. Originally released on the Apple II in 1981, it changed the outlook on what was technologically possible in video gaming. And, of course, it was the inspiration for the granddaddy of first person shooters, the ground-breaking Wolfenstein 3D.
The story is as follows: You are a prisoner of war being held in a Nazi prison during the height of World War II. You will have to use stealth and wits to escape alive; if you are shot or captured, you will have to start over. During gameplay, you will encounter Nazi guards as well as the superior SS. You will be able to search bodies, pick locks, and open chests, discovering such valuables as grenades and Nazi disguises as well as extra ammunition and other useful items. Picking certain locks takes a certain amount of time. Shooting at the locked chest speeds up the process but wastes your precious ammo. If you shoot open a chest containing grenades or ammo, it will explode and kill you.
Because of this particular game's antiquity, you will probably have to use a slow-down program, such as MoSlo (included in the download), to run Castle Wolfenstein as it was meant to be run. It will need to be set to a very low level for proper effect (2-3). It is worth the extra effort, however. This is a true classic and well worth the experience, no matter what genre of gaming you fancy. It's actually quite addictive and enjoyable.
The controls may seem difficult to master at first, but don't be deceived; it actually takes very little to get used to them. The eight keys surrounding the L key will move you, and L stops you. The eight keys around the S key will aim your handgun, and S will fire it. H puts your gun away. Opening chests and doors requires you to aim your handgun in the direction of the target and to hit Space. Space also searches bodies. U uses items. It's actually a very simple system, and after a little playtime you should have gotten the hang of it.
Castle Wolfenstein was an earth-shattering release in the early '80s, and amazingly, if given the time, the gameplay still holds up today. The graphics were good for their time, and the sound... well, it was 1983. But still, this game is a legend and deserves the highest rating I can give: a perfect 5.
After receiving a Cease & Desist from the current owner of MUSE Software and holder of the trademarks and copyrights of Castle Wolfenstein, all material related to the game has been removed from download. Hopefully, the owner has big plans for the franchise in the near future. We may never know, but until then enjoy the review and don't hesitate to participate in the forum discussions concerning this great achievement of the gaming industry at that time.