Wolfenstein 3D free browser version marks 20th anniversary

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Wolfenstein 3D's launch this month, id Software and Bethesda have released a free HTML 5 version of the seminal FPS. John Carmack's also made a little director's commentary, filled with classic Carmackchat.


What did you get yer old pal B.J. Blazkowicz for his birthday? Come now, surely you didn't forget that it's the 20th anniversary of Wolfenstein 3D's launch this month? Luckily, id Software and Bethesda haven't, and have given us all a free browser-based version of its seminal shooter. John Carmack has also given a director's commentary, full of the usual fascinating Carmackchat.

You can play the snazzy HTML 5 version of Wolf 3D if you're browsing in Firefox 10, Chrome 16, Internet Explorer 9, Safari 5, or newer. Fingers crossed that your work computer is updated vaguely frequently.

The iOS version is also going temporarily free in the App Store some time later today.

id Software got distracted by Doom and Quake after the release of a Wolf 3D prequel, but the series returned in 2001 with Return to Castle Wolfenstein from Grey Matter and Nerve Software. Splash Damage followed this with the superb free multiplayer spin-off Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, then the last entry in the series was Raven's Wolfenstein in 2009.

Here's Carmack's commentary on Wolf 3D:

From The Chatty
  • reply
    May 9, 2012 7:25 AM

    Alice O'Connor posted a new article, Wolfenstein 3D free browser version marks 20th anniversary.

    To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Wolfenstein 3D's launch this month, id Software and Bethesda have released a free HTML 5 version of the seminal FPS. John Carmack's also made a little director's commentary, filled with classic Carmackchat.

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 8:00 AM


    • reply
      May 9, 2012 8:29 AM

      Fuck I'm old :(

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 8:34 AM

      I wanna hear Carmack flip out and rant about his plans for world domination. It'd sound hilarious.

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 10:29 AM

      I guess it's not 100% on topic, but this reminded me... I had a great time with Raven's entry in the series. I know it didn't do too well sales-wise, but if you like shootin' Nazis and monster with over-the-top weapons and powers you should at least think about grabbing it during the next Steam sale.

      It's a pretty easy game, perhaps because of dreaded "consolitis", but there's a certain cathartic fun to just roaring through it. If however you want a stiff challenge then you might prefer to use this mod: http://www.moddb.com/mods/retrostein

      • reply
        May 9, 2012 11:08 AM

        Bethesda put up a Wolf pack for steam sale http://store.steampowered.com/sub/418/ but unfortunately they don't have the rights to the newest game and Activision barely ever puts it on sale.

        Hopefully Bethesda gets the rights soon like they did with Quake 4.

      • reply
        May 9, 2012 3:58 PM

        I loved Wolfenstein 2009; the weapons were fun (especially the Kar98; probably the most fun bolt-action rifle action in a single-player game for quite a while), and there were plenty of combat opportunities.

        All-weapon inventory, ironsight aiming, powerups, purchaseable ammo... it was an unapologetic GAME, not just another roller-coaster ride. Even if it was linear, it was the whole environment in front of you, saying, "Here, have fun."

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 11:09 AM

      old news... we were already talking about this...

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 11:45 AM

      That commentary video was a good watch. Especially the stretch of Carmack free-associating while playing. :-)

      I didn't have a PC of my own when Wolfenstein came out, so I just watched one of my best friends play it occasionally; it was different & intriguing but didn't really grab me. Doom was where I finally got the FPS bug. I should go check out that web version...

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 12:50 PM

      Man I still remember when I thought this was the best graphics in the world and the new generation of gaming away from crapy consoles and side scrollers.

      Was christened PC gamer ever since.

      I tried playing it through again few years ago but the 2.5d engine makes me feel a bit nauseous now.

      • reply
        May 9, 2012 2:28 PM

        So, this is a thing: http://www.afadoomer.com/wolf3d/default.php

        Wolfenstein for ZDoom. If you use GZDoom ( http://www.osnanet.de/c.oelckers/gzdoom/ ) then you will get perspective correction when looking up/down, i.e. no more weird warping that makes you sick. You can also play with the texture filtering options in GZDoom to keep things looking pixely/authentic.

        I have no idea how good of a port or conversion this is though, I just remember seeing a link to it a while back.

        • reply
          May 10, 2012 7:48 AM

          This looks like the solution to my problems, thanks.

    • reply
      May 9, 2012 4:46 PM

      I forgot how shocking the violence was at the time. For example, BJ's portrait when he gets really injured and his eye is popping out. I remember that really making an impression on me when I was young, the same way I was shocked playing Bionic Commando when Hitler's portrait goes all Akira style and his face disintegrates.

    • reply
      May 10, 2012 3:39 AM

      I picked up RtCW on steam of $2 even though its free, I didn't care. MP is disabled as activision no longer hosts the master servers. I would absolutely love to play some MP.... Beach, village.... to this day that was the best MP I've ever played.

Hello, Meet Lola