More Christmas rant

Pascal Cuoq - 30th Dec 2011

In 2011, I got an Xbox 360. It's not what I would have liked but you know what they say about not looking gift consoles in the mouth especially when you get them one solstice early. When in the game shop I saw in the second-hand games bin the game Wolfenstein having played both 1992's Wolfenstein 3D and 2001's Return to Castle Wolfenstein I did not hesitate.

I have never been a video game fanatic. I didn't finish Wolfenstein 3D for some reason —perhaps because Doom came out— and I didn't finish Return to Castle Wolfenstein that I was enjoying because it was becoming too hard at the point when supernatural creatures were everywhere.

I have played Wolfenstein a little bit now and it's a lot of fun. The decors are beautifully rendered and dynamic (objects that would have been immovable in other games tumble when you use a grenade nearby). There are some original ideas the whole thing is very playable with a couple of nice references to previous opuses. And it does not open with a torture scene. I'm not suggesting you put it in the hands of children I'm just saying that you don't have to worry the intro sequence will put you off your meal the way Return to Castle Wolfenstein's did. This is what a sequel should be like.

In addition to playing the game I have also read some reviews which made me realize I am completely out of touch. Reviews of this game were the very definition of "lukewarm". One reviewer found the graphics outdated and wondered whether that wasn't the same engine as Quake 4. Well he could have looked it up: it is. But then again another reviewer complained that the iPhone 4S's screen was "last year's resolution" so what does internet know?

Reading this I couldn't believe time could pass so fast. "This can't be! It would mean I am in my mid-thirties!" I exlaimed. But I did look it up and yes id Tech 4 was first used in Doom 3 in 2004.

I also got Crysis 2 from the second-hand game bin so I actually know what a 3D game is supposed to look like in 2011. It looks great too but I would say that even for 3D games it is now time to put the emphasis on other elements than just the engine. I would create a start-up based on this insight but I am afraid I was not first to realize it.

Pascal Cuoq
30th Dec 2011