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Return to Castle Wolfenstein
Return to Castle Wolfenstein Coverart.jpg
Developer(s) Gray Matter Interactive
id Software
Nerve Software (Multiplayer) & (Xbox)
Raster Productions (Playstation 2)
Publisher(s) Activision (PlayStation 2, Windows, Xbox)
Aspyr Media, Inc. (Mac OS X)
Activision/Valve Corporation (Steam)
Series Wolfenstein
Engine id Tech 3
Version 1.32 Single Player, 1.41b Multiplayer
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Xbox, PlayStation 2
Release date(s) Windows (retail)

NA November 19, 2001
EU November 30, 2001
INT March 16, 2002
Mac OS X
INT April 2002
NA May 6, 2003
EU May 15, 2003
JP December 25, 2003
PlayStation 2
NA May 27, 2003
EU June 6, 2003
Windows (Steam)
INT August 4, 2007

Genre(s) First-person shooter
Mode(s) Single-player, Multiplayer
Rating(s) BBFC: 15+
PEGI: 16+
PEGI: 15+ (Finland)
USK: 16 (indexed)
Media CD
System requirements Linux, Mac OS X 10.2.8+, Windows 95 OSR2/98/98 SE/ME/NT 4.0/2000/XP operating systems:
  • 400 MHz AMD or Intel processor (Mac OS X: 500 MHz PowerPC processor)
  • 128 MB RAM (Mac OS X: 256 MB)
  • 800 MB hard drive space plus 300 MB for the swap file (Mac OS X: 600 MB)
  • 16 MB 3D graphics accelerator and full OpenGL support (Mac OS X: 32 MB)
  • Windows: DirectX 8.0a (included)
  • Sound card (Windows: DirectX 3.0 compatible sound card)
  • Quad speed CD-ROM
Input methods Keyboard, Mouse, Gamepad

Return to Castle Wolfenstein is a first person shooter video game published by Activision and originally released on November 19, 2001 for Windows. The single player game was developed by Gray Matter Interactive and Nerve Software developed its multiplayer mode. Id Software, the creators of the original game entitled Wolfenstein 3D, oversaw the development of the game and were credited as executive producers. The multiplayer side, developed by Nerve Software eventually became the most popular part of the game, and it was influential in the genre. Splash Damage, an independently-owned game developer in London, created some of the maps for the Game of the Year edition. A sequel, titled Wolfenstein, was released on August 18, 2009.




Wolf MP is an objective game mode, in which both the Axis and Allies have a series of objectives to complete to win the round, with one team's objectives normally preventing the other team from completing their objectives. There are primary and secondary objectives. Primary objectives have to be achieved to win the round, where secondary objectives don't necessarily need to be achieved, but can aid in certain ways in completing primary objectives. Primary objectives include blowing something up, or escaping with the documents, and secondary objectives include capturing flag/spawn points. As far as the classes are concerned, medics can leave medic packs to heal comrades, but can run out of ammunition quickly. Lieutenants can provide packs of ammo, as well as calling for air strikes, but need a medic to stay alive. Engineers are able to blow up walls using dynamite.

Wolf MP - Stock or "Vanilla" Wolf calls for one round of offense and defense per team, per map. Each team gets a certain amount of time to complete the map's objectives. A few maps are dual-objective, and instead of time being the variable, whoever completed the given task first, wins.

Wolf SW (Stopwatch) was the main competitive game type for RtCW, each team would attack twice and defend twice on a map — where team A would attack and set a time or not set a time, known as a "Full Hold", then team B would attack and have to beat that time to score a point. If they did not beat the time then team A were awarded the point, the only other outcome was if neither team set a time, known as a "Double Full Hold", neither team scored a point. Games were played over two maps and each map would be played ABBA, so each team got to go first at setting a time on each map.

Wolf CP is a checkpoint mode, the objective is to take control of the flags that are in various locations around the map, the first team to control all these flags simultaneously will win the round.


Return to Castle Wolfenstein (RTCW) is a remake of the early, seminal first-person shooter Wolfenstein 3D, incorporating many advances in graphics technology and gameplay design since the original game.

Concept art of a Loper. The strongest are encountered in X-Labs.

It features a story-based single player campaign (taking up certain themes from the original game), as well as a team-based networked multiplayer version which features different character classes that must work together in order to win. There are four classes — lieutenant, medic, engineer, and soldier — the soldier can be one of several subclasses depending upon the special/heavy weapon that he selects. Some unique weapons not found in other World War II–themed first-person shooters include the airstrike beacon, Venom, and Flame Thrower. The multiplayer demo included a beachhead assault map similar to Omaha Beach.

One — referred to in passing in the PC versions, and seen in the Xbox, PS2, and Mac OS X versions), is sent to investigate rumors surrounding one of Heinrich Himmler's personal projects, the SS Paranormal Division. The agents are, however, captured before completing their mission and are imprisoned in Castle Wolfenstein. Taking the role of Blazkowicz, the player must escape the castle and continue investigating the activities of the SS Paranormal Division, which include research on resurrecting corpses, biotechnology, and secret weapons. During the game the player will face numerous foes, including Waffen SS soldiers, elite Fallschirmjäger (paratroopers) known as Black Guards, legions of undead creatures, and horrific Übersoldaten (supersoldiers) formed from a hideous blend of surgery and chemical engineering conducted by Wilhelm "Deathshead" Strasse. The end boss is an undead Saxon warrior-prince named Heinrich I.

To comply with German law, a special edition of the game was made for that country, in which the developers removed the Nazi swastika. In its stead, the German forces' use a Wolfenstein logo which is a combination of a stylized double-headed eagle prominent in most Nazi symbolism, and a "W" (standing for Wolfenstein), it can be seen on the cover art for the American version (above). Every direct reference to the "Third Reich" was removed; thus, in that edition, the player is not battling Nazis, but a secret sect called the "Wolves" led by Heinrich Höller, whose name is a pun of the original character Himmler (Himmler roughly translates as "Heavener", Höller as "Heller").

Music pieces such as Moonlight sonata and Für Elise are used in this game.


While investigating the activities of the SS Paranormal Division in Germany, B.J. Blazkowicz and Agent One have been captured by the Nazis. Agent One dies while being interrogated, but B.J. manages to escape Castle Wolfenstein's dungeon. He then fights his way out of the castle and uses a tram car to leave the area and meet up with a member of the German resistance in a nearby village.

The SS Paranormal Division under Oberführer Helga von Bulow has been excavating the catacombs and crypts of an ancient church within the village. Their sloppy precautions have led to the awakening of hordes of undead creatures, including Saxon knights, and the entrance had to be sealed off with many soldiers trapped inside. B.J. descends regardless and fights both Nazis and Undead until he arrives at the ancient "Defiled Church" where Nazi scientist Professor Zemph is conducting a "life essence extraction" on the corpse of a Dark Knight. Shortly before B.J.'s arrival, Zemph tries to talk Helga von Bulow out of retrieving an ancient Thulian dagger, but she shoots him impatiently and proceeds. This awakens a monster which kills her too. Blazkowicz fights the monster and is airlifted out, with Zemph's notes and the dagger.

One of Germany's leading scientific researchers and Head of the SS "Special Projects Division", Wilhelm "Deathshead" Strasse, is preparing to launch an attack on London using a V-2 rocket fitted with an experimental germ warhead from his base near Katamarunde in the Baltics. Blazkowicz is parachuted some distance from the missile base and smuggles himself in a supply truck. Inside the base, Blazkowicz destroys the V-2 rocket on its launchpad and fights his way out of the facility towards an airbase filled with experimental jet aircraft. There, he commandeers a "Kobra" rocket-plane and flies to safety in Malta.

Eager to know more about Deathshead and his secret projects, the OSA sends Blazkowicz to the bombed city of Kugelstadt ('Bullet City'), where he is assisted by members of the German Kreisau Circle resistance in breaking into a ruined factory and exfiltering a defecting scientist. There he discovers the blueprints for the Reich's latest weapon, an electrical machine-gun called "Venom Gun" which he also procures. Blazkowicz eventually breaks into Deathshead's underground research complex, the Secret Weapons Facility (SWF). There he encounters horrific creatures, malformed and twisted through surgery and mechanical implants. The creatures have just escaped and gone on a rampage. Blazkowicz sees Deathshead escape the SWF by U-Boat, and learns of his destination by interrogating a captured German officer.

Blazkowicz is parachuted into Norway, close to Deathshead's mysterious "X-Labs". After breaking into the facility, in which several of the twisted creatures (deemed "Lopers") he encountered in Kugelstadt are rampaging, Blazkowicz retrieves Deathshead's journal and confronts several prototype Übersoldaten, towering monstrosities coated in armor, powered by hydraulic legs, and carrying powerful fixed weapons. Finally, he confronts and destroys one of Deathshead's completed Übersoldaten and kills the researchers who have developed it. Deathshead himself escapes in a rocket-plane and does not appear in the game again.

After studying the documents captured by Blazkowicz, the OSA has become aware of a scheme codenamed "Operation: Resurrection", a plan to resurrect Heinrich I, a legendary and powerful Saxon warlock-king. Despite the scepticism of senior Allied commanders, the OSA parachutes Blazkowicz close to Castle Wolfenstein itself. He arrives at the town of Paderborn and, after assassinating all the several senior officers of the SS Paranormal Division present there for the resurrection, fights his way through Chateau Schufstaffel, and into the grounds beyond. After fighting two more Übersoldaten, Blazkowicz enters an excavation site near Castle Wolfenstein.

Inside the excavation site, Blazkowicz fights Nazi guards and prototype Übersoldaten, and makes his way to a boarded-up entrance to Castle Wolfenstein's crypts. There, he finds that the ruined part of the castle has become infested by undead creatures, which are attacking the castle's desperate garrison. After fighting his way through the castle, Blazkowicz arrives slightly too late at the site of a dark ceremony to resurrect Heinrich I. At the ceremony, SS Psychic Marianna Blavatsky conjures up dark spirits, which transform three Übersoldaten into Dark Knights, Heinrich's lieutenants. She ultimately raises Heinrich I, who "thanks" her by turning her into his undead slave. In a climactic battle, Blazkowicz destroys the three Dark Knights and Heinrich I as SS chief Heinrich Himmler watches in horror from afar.


Oberführer Wilhelm Strasse in X-Labs

Oberführer (Senior Colonel) Wilhelm Strasse or Deathshead is a gifted researcher who heads the SS Special Projects Division. He is the man behind both the Lopers, and the Super Soldiers, towering cyborg soldiers that were heavily armed and armored. He was also attempting to launch a V2 rocket on London with a chemical warhead. Unlike the other SS antagonists, Deathshead does not believe in the occult and would prefer to arm the Nazi war machine using advanced technology, but has been ordered to provide his creations to Operation Resurrection by Himmler himself. Himmler has also asked him to join the resurrection ceremony but Strasse declines due to his disbelief in the occult. Strasse continuously taunts Blazkowicz during his duel in the lab with an Übersoldat, commenting "Thus we will see the superiority of the machine over flesh and blood." After the protagonist wins the fight, Deathshead narrowly escapes in a rocket plane and goes into hiding, not to be seen again for the rest of the Story. Deathshead returns as one of the main antagonists in the 2009 sequel Wolfenstein, where he has been promoted to Obergruppenführer (General (SS)).

Übersoldat is Wilhelm "Deathshead" Strasse's creation. It is a brutish cyborg with technological and cybernetic enhancements, armed with experimental weapons such as Tesla guns, Venom guns, and also Panzerfausts. The Übersoldaten are heavily armored and can take a massive amount of damage, functioning as game bosses.

Standartenführer (Colonel (SS)) Helga Von Bulow is a high ranking officer within the SS Paranormal Division and also founder of the order of the Elite Guards, the SS Paranormal Division's all-female security force. She is Marianna Blavatsky's pupil and a firm believer in the occult. Although a capable leader, Helga tries too hard and makes rash decisions that jeopardize the safety of her troops. While the Elite Guards are loyal to her, the male soldiers under her command are skeptical of her choices.

SS High Priestess Oberführer Marianna Blavatsky is in charge of Operation Resurrection. She tutored Standartenführer Von Bulow in the ways of the occult. Little is mentioned of her until the OSA learns of the ceremony. She is first seen in the game conducting a ceremony near a chateau involving two Super Soldiers. At the finale, she transforms three Super Soldiers into Death Knights and uses them to revive Heinrich I. Blavatsky pledges her loyalty and servitude to Heinrich only for him to reward her by transforming her into a zombie slave. Blavatsky and the Death Knights end up being destroyed by Blazkowicz as he arrives to face Heinrich.

Olaric, the boss for the first set of missions, is the founder of the Dark Forge and involved in Thulian lore. Standartenführer Von Bulow finds Olaric's tomb and, despite Prof. Zemph's warnings about breaking the inner seal, she accidentally brings him back to life by taking his dagger. Olaric kills her shortly before Blazkowicz arrives on the scene.

Heinrich I was an evil warlord - allegedly Heinrich I of Germany - who launched a campaign of conquest in Medieval Europe. He had studied the black arts and used them to his advantage by raising the dead. In the intro movie, a wizard confronts Heinrich and magically seals the tyrant in limbo 1000 years later the SS Paranormal division discovers his tomb. The player's final task in the game is to stop the sorceress Blavatsky from reviving him, but this cannot be achieved. Instead, Heinrich must be defeated in the final boss battle.

Heinrich Himmler is the only non-fictional character of this game and the main person behind Operation Resurrection. He appears in a short cameo in the last cutscene, watching B.J. defeat and kill Heinrich I from a good distance. He expresses bitterness at the Agent's victory, saying: "This American...he has ruined everything!" then walks away to give a report to Adolf Hitler.


The game is powered by a heavily-modified version of the Quake III: Team Arena engine. The Return to Castle Wolfenstein engine was subsequently used as the foundation for Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory (Splash Damage/Activision), "Trinity" (Gray Matter Interactive/Activision) (shown at E3 in 2004, but canceled shortly after) and Call of Duty (Infinity Ward/Activision).

There are many different versions of "Wolf". The original release, version 1.0, came in a game box featuring a book-like flap. The Game of the Year Edition (2002 - v.1.3) came with the original Wolfenstein 3D, game demos, and several new multiplayer maps (including "Ice", "Tram", "Keep" and "Trenchtoast"). The Collector's Edition (2003 - v.1.33) came in a metal case and was packaged with promotional materials, including a poster and fabric patch. The Platinum Edition (2004 - v.1.41) included Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, a stand-alone expansion, and Wolfenstein 3D.

Throughout the evolution of the multiplayer game, various modifications and custom scripts were written for it, allowing for true, console in-game changes. "Degeneration", "shrubmod" and "banimod" were popular modifications, and custom maps were still being released 5 years after its inception. Initially, the multiplayer was criticized for heavy defensive weaponry, and one-sided maps. However, it was quickly determined by clans that the proper usage of the various classes of character dictated victory. Medics could revive a fallen comrade (before he was "gibbed", or made un-revivable), and engineers could set dynamite to blow up objectives. Still, the game was essentially a submachine gun war, with 90% of the players possessing either an MP-40 or a Thompson; almost equal in ability.[citation needed]

Another mod for RtCW though was OSP which was used in all the major LAN (Local Area Network) events around the world. From Quakecon to the more recent and most likely the last RtCW LAN, CPC2, all used OSP as the competition's mod, mainly due to the control given to teams and admins during the games play — it also removed less competitive variants that other mods included like the poison needle, damaging someone when landing on them and custom modifications that were normally found on most servers with a different mod. OSP is considered a more realistic and at the same time simple mod that lets players get straight into the game and improve their aim and tactical approach which in turn leads to higher competition between teams.[citation needed]


The game was released for the Linux and Macintosh platforms in 2002, with the Linux port done internally by Timothee Besset and the Mac port done by Aspyr Media, Inc. In 2003, the game was ported to the PlayStation 2 and Xbox video game consoles and subtitled as Operation Resurrection and Tides of War, respectively. Both console versions include a series of prequel single player missions where the main character, BJ Blazkowicz and his partner Agent One operate in Nazi-occupied Egypt / North Africa. The PS2 version has a New Bonus Feature where you can purchase items by finding secrets at the end of each level. In the Xbox version a Secret Bonus is awarded after every level when all the secret areas for that level have been found. It also has a New Shotgun weapon found in Single player as well as the Soldier and Engineer for Multiplayer games. New Special equipment — Holy Cross, EMP Device, and X-Shield. New Enemies - Occult Priest and X-Shepard. And the original Wolf 3D. The two player co-op mode is exclusive to Xbox and allows the second player to play as Agent One. The Xbox version has the addition of online play via Xbox Live and link play. It also has downloadable content. Xbox has also released a Platinum Hits edition of the game. The Playstation 2 version lacks any online play whatsoever.


A multiplayer-only spinoff of the series, Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, was originally planned as a full-fledged expansion pack for Return to Castle Wolfenstein developed by Splash Damage. The single player component of the game was never completed and thus was removed entirely. The developers at that point decided the multiplayer part would be released as a free, downloadable standalone game. Enemy Territory is a team-based networked multiplayer game which involves completing objectives through team-work and by using different character classes.

A sequel called Wolfenstein was developed by Raven Software and id Software and published by Activision,[1] and released on August 18, 2009.[2]


A Return to Castle Wolfenstein film was announced in 2002 with Rob Cohen of xXx attached to direct. Little information has been available since, however, with the exception of a July 20, 2005 IGN interview. The interview discussed the Return to Castle Wolfenstein film with id employees.[3] In the interview, Todd Hollenshead indicated that the movie was in the works, though still in the early stages.

On August 3, 2007, GameSpot reported that Variety confirmed Return to Castle Wolfenstein and that the writer/producer team that was involved with Silent Hill will be involved with the Wolfenstein project. The movie will be written and directed by Roger Avary and Samuel Hadida is the producer.[4] Roger Avary was arrested in January 2008 for DUI and manslaughter after a friend of his died in a car accident while Avary was at the wheel. No news has yet emerged about Avary's involvement with this project.


In March 2008, the United States Department of State published a report to Congress, "Contemporary Global Anti-Semitism", that described Return to Castle Wolfenstein as an "anti-Semitic video game" with no qualifications.[5] The report picked up on an article originally written in 2002 by Jonathan Kay of the New York Times regarding the recent introduction of "Nazi protagonists" in the online gaming market (referring specifically to Day of Defeat and Wolfenstein).[6] The article was published just 19 days before Medal of Honor: Allied Assault was released which shares many similar features, and the Nazi protagonists in multiplayer.

Todd Hollenshead, chief executive of id Software at the time of the original article stated "The trend you're seeing with new games is, to some extent, a reflection of what's going in the culture ... For instance, you've now got games with terrorists and counterterrorists. And World War II games such as Return to Castle Wolfenstein and Day of Defeat reflect what you see in popular movies."

"I don't doubt there are going to be people that go out and distort what the multiplayer gaming experience is and say, 'Oh, I can't believe you guys did this.' There are a lot of critics of the game industry, and they look for things to criticize."


See also


External links


Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

Return to Castle Wolfenstein

Developer(s) id Software
Gray Matter Interactive
Nerve Software
Publisher(s) Activision
Engine Quake III
Release date November 20, 2001
Genre First-person shooter
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer
Age rating(s) ESRB: M
BBFC: 15
Platform(s) PC (Windows, Linux, Mac), PS2, Xbox
Media CD-ROM
Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough

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Wolfenstein series
Castle Wolfenstein - Beyond Castle Wolfenstein - Wolfenstein 3D - Spear of Destiny - Return to Castle Wolfenstein - Enemy Territory - Wolfenstein - Wolfenstein RPG

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