(Trying a different direction for a review, starting with this piece for Wolfenstein 3D played on the Xbox Live Arcade.)
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Old graphics were great for their time. In Wolfenstein, however, you basically have a handfun of enemies and three textures for walls. None of the graphics have been upgraded or polished for the XBLA release. Although Wolfenstein is a piece of gaming history (the grand-daddy of first-person shooters) it's still not a whole lotta fun to look at.
Music and Sound: 5/10
Some of the music is decent, the rest is throwaway. The nazi's voices are always amusing, though. "HALT SIR! AIEEEE!"
As this is the game to which all Call of Duty-playing gamers owe their respect, it would be impossible for this to get a bad score. This is first-person shooting in its most basic sense. No jumping, no crouching, no reloading, ducking behind cover and trying to memorize four-hundred button combinations to throw a grenade, et cetera. Just run, sprint, shoot, and open doors and/or secret doors. There are, of course, drawbacks, since this game was originally released before my computer had a color monitor; there is no inclination nor declination of the Z-axis. That is to say, there are no stairs. There are no raised or lowered platforms. No pits, no hills, no nothing. Just plain, flat floor, throughout the entire game. It makes every level seem like the previous one.
As with most first-person shooters, there are puzzles to solve, enemies to kill (including GERMAN Shepards... GERMAN) and Nazi gold to collect. Aside from the aforementioned every-level-looking-the-same thing, Wolfenstein has fantastic gameplay -- unless you demand crouching, jumping, freelook, grenades, et cetera, in which case, you ought'a show some respect to your (first-person shooter) elders, you ungrateful ass.
Dialog and Story: 7/10
I never really did figure out what was happening in this game. story-wise. All I know is that the baddies are Nazis, and Nazis are bad.
Analog stick to move, right trigger to shoot, A button to open doors and/or secret doors and left trigger to sprint. Let's be honest, though, you could have assumed all of that.
As dated as it is, Wolfenstein is pure retro badassery. If you haven't played it in some form already, 400 Microsoft Points is a steal. You might as well get it, so that you can brag to your buddies how you "were there" when the FPS genre got its teeth into gamers. Even though you probably weren't.