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  Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Operation Resurrection
From the Company
You are B.J. Blazkowicz, a US Army Ranger recruited by the OSA and the Allies’ top specialist in covert operations, heavy weapons and assassination. Hitler’s head of the SS, Heinrich Himmler, is twisting science and the occult into an army capable of annihilating the Allies. The balance of victory is in your hands.

The Skinny
I remember playing Wolfenstein 3D: Spear of Destiny (on my PC) way back when… must have been around ’93 or so… and at the time, this game was mind-blowing! It was my first experience with a first-person shooter, and I was hooked. Since then FPS games have evolved quite a bit, and now most have amazing graphics and lighting effects, realistic sounds, and even more gory blood and guts than before. So now, with Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Operation Resurrection in front of me, I was pretty excited to see just how far the game had come. I must say that for the most part, I was impressed. I did have some issues, mostly with the collision detection (or lack there of). There is nothing more “mood wrecking” than killing a soldier up on a ledge, and then having his lifeless body floating 15 feet up in the air. But overall, I was pleasantly surprised. The texture quality was impressive, and the frame rate was not too bad either.

My biggest beef with RTCW:Operation Resurrection was the lack of a multiplayer game. Yes, it’s fun wandering around having to kill everything in sight, but sometimes you just want to have a split-screen death match. It wouldn’t have been so bad if the AI in the single-player game was better (or even present), but being able to sit in a doorway and just pop off bad guys as they, like lemmings, run to their deaths can get a little boring. Lets face it, RTCW:Operation Resurrection is a shooter, and it’s great at that. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy pumping round after round into enemies and destroying everything in sight, and this game fulfills this for sure. The action is tense (especially on the harder difficulties), the weapons plentiful, and the battles are thrilling, even difficult sometimes… but this is of the sheer number and strength of the opponents, and not their devilish AI. I was also surprised with the attempted implementation of stealth to the game. While it is true that you can sometimes sneak up on your enemy and stab him to death with you knife, these occurrences seem planned and are not much of a challenge… especially when most of the time, the bad guys are alerted to your presence even before you see them in your crosshairs. And don’t even get me started on the horrendous kicking animation…

The sound in RTCW:Operation Resurrection was another element that I enjoyed in the game. The guns, the undead, the Nazis, all sounded great. Perfectly incorporated surges of music at key points/scenes were fantastic to heighten the tension of stressful situations. You would even get to hear Beethoven’s Fur Elise playing in the background in some of the Nazi rooms. How quaint.

The Bottom Line
Return To Castle Wolfenstein: Operation Resurrection is a no-frills, first-person shooter and this it pulls off quite well… and looks great doing it. It did let me down though on the multi-player aspect. My advice would be to go out and rent it before buying, depending on what you are looking for. With no multiplayer mode, re-playability is drastically limited.

Review ID Number: 481
  Product Details
Activision
Review Date: 2003-07-02
Reviewer: Shawn Sardy
Rating: 7 out of 10
 
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