2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

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VideoGameCritic
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2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby VideoGameCritic » May 5th, 2021, 6:04 pm

These latest Atari Xe reviews might be a history lesson for some of you. Thoughts?

LuckyWDFN
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby LuckyWDFN » May 6th, 2021, 10:01 am

I loved these games, especially Beyond and I still dig it out once in a blue moon. There is a ton of strategy that goes much deeper than the simplistic graphics and clunky player movement. Resetting tripped alarms, picking locks, conserving bullets, knifing guards vs shooting them, stealth vs slash & burn (and a fast path out), and more. I like how the passwords reset from floor to floor, you have to remember which pass coincided with which floor. Planting a bomb near an unsuspecting Fuehrer and racing against the clock to escape is awesome.

That said, VGC is spot on in regards to the controls and the interface. The game has aged poorly in that regard and I'd have a hard time recommending it to anyone who didn't grow up with it.

Lastly, I think Sudz deserves his own icon - his presence makes every review even better. Maybe a super foamy beer or a bunch of soap bubbles?

HawgWyld
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby HawgWyld » May 6th, 2021, 10:16 am

Interesting -- I spent many an hour playing "Castle Wolfenstein" on my Apple //e and didn't find switching between the joystick and the keyboard awkward. Was the setup for the Atari version different?

LuckyWDFN
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby LuckyWDFN » May 6th, 2021, 12:19 pm

HawgWyld wrote:Interesting -- I spent many an hour playing "Castle Wolfenstein" on my Apple //e and didn't find switching between the joystick and the keyboard awkward. Was the setup for the Atari version different?


I think the configuration was the same but Apple IIe players had the advantage of the built in monitor likely playing the game at a desk. Atari 800 was different unless you played it at a desk, Atari players like me had a bad keyboard hooked up to some random TV in a living room or bedroom with a long joystick cable and toggling back and forth was awkward. When I played this game co-op, I had to stick my friend at the computer about 2 inches away from the TV to man the keyboard while I fought Nazis 5 feet away on a joystick sitting on the floor yelling "hit the space bar" or "switch to the knife". Still good times tho

matmico399
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby matmico399 » May 6th, 2021, 7:23 pm

Always happy to see XEGS reviews. They are pretty rare.

HawgWyld
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby HawgWyld » May 6th, 2021, 9:18 pm

LuckyWDFN wrote:I think the configuration was the same but Apple IIe players had the advantage of the built in monitor likely playing the game at a desk. Atari 800 was different unless you played it at a desk, Atari players like me had a bad keyboard hooked up to some random TV in a living room or bedroom with a long joystick cable and toggling back and forth was awkward. When I played this game co-op, I had to stick my friend at the computer about 2 inches away from the TV to man the keyboard while I fought Nazis 5 feet away on a joystick sitting on the floor yelling "hit the space bar" or "switch to the knife". Still good times tho


Ah, now THAT makes sense.

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travistouchdown
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby travistouchdown » May 7th, 2021, 3:18 pm

After growing up playing Wolfenstein 3D on DOS and Mac it was hard going back to these games when i finally got them for XEGS. They are overly hard and not all that fun. Still....it had to start somewhere. If push came to shove i'd probably rather play the Wolfenstein for VCS (venture hack) over these games. That, while basic in graphical style, is super fun.

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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby C64_Critic » May 7th, 2021, 3:47 pm

LuckyWDFN wrote:I think the configuration was the same but Apple IIe players had the advantage of the built in monitor likely playing the game at a desk. Atari 800 was different unless you played it at a desk, Atari players like me had a bad keyboard hooked up to some random TV in a living room or bedroom with a long joystick cable and toggling back and forth was awkward. When I played this game co-op, I had to stick my friend at the computer about 2 inches away from the TV to man the keyboard while I fought Nazis 5 feet away on a joystick sitting on the floor yelling "hit the space bar" or "switch to the knife". Still good times tho


Nailed it. Ditto for the C64 (although looking back I'm surprised I gave Beyond Castle Wolfenstein the grade I did, I may have re-visit). Playing on that system, the keyboard was similarly right in front of me at a desk so it only took a fraction of a second to reach over and smack the space bar or arrow key or whatever. You adjusted, it was workable, but certainly sub-optimal as they say. A Nintendo-style controller with multiple buttons would have been a great substitute here, but alas they hadn't been invented yet and we were all getting by with single-button joysticks for the most part.

LuckyWDFN
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Re: 2021/5/5: Atari XEGS: Castle Wolfenstein, Beyond Castle Wolfenstein

Postby LuckyWDFN » May 7th, 2021, 5:51 pm

[/quote] Nailed it. Ditto for the C64 (although looking back I'm surprised I gave Beyond Castle Wolfenstein the grade I did, I may have re-visit). Playing on that system, the keyboard was similarly right in front of me at a desk so it only took a fraction of a second to reach over and smack the space bar or arrow key or whatever. You adjusted, it was workable, but certainly sub-optimal as they say. A Nintendo-style controller with multiple buttons would have been a great substitute here, but alas they hadn't been invented yet and we were all getting by with single-button joysticks for the most part.[/quote]

I liked the points you raised in your review too.

Sometimes I think the early Wolfensteins are light years ahead of where other games were at that point - great voice synth, incredible balance of action vs strategy, many strategy nuances etc....

Then I think about the negatives you & VGC raise in regards to the controls and the replay value being almost nill after you blow up Hitler


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