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Wolfenstein Lore

Lore = 'Lots of Reading Enjoyment'.
In this area we give you all of the interesting information and little known facts about the games, that didn't fit in the other pages of this site.  We hope that you find this section enlightening.


Little Known Facts

  • A Game of  Many Names - Although it was finally released with the title Wolfenstein 3d, Tom Hall came up with several other names for the game, while it was in production.  While some of them were jokes, others became episode names.  Here's the list:

    Castle Ochtenstein
    Luger's Run
    The Fourth Reich
    Adolph's Bane
    Hard Cell
    Luger Me Now
    Tank you very much
    Castle Hasselhoff
    How do you Duseldorf?
    Castle Verlassen (To abandon the Castle)
    Sturmwind (Stormwind)
    Hollehammer (Hellhammer)
    Shattensendener (Shadowsender)
    Geruchschlect (Bad Smell)
    Dolchteufel (Devil Dagger)
    Grabgrabbener (Grave Digger)
    Eisenschwert (Iron Sword)
    Dammerung (Twilight/Dawn)


  • What's in a name? - After choosing the iD name, they found that they weren't the first.  There was also a chain of women's clothing stores called 'iD', as well as 'The Wizard of iD' comic strip by Brant Parker/Johnny Hart.  They called the company 'iD' for 4 reasons:

    1. iD is the acronym for 'in demand'.  This was also a slogan for one of their first games.
    2. It was a close incarnation to the name of their  previously named companies.
    3. Look in the dictionary under 'iD' and 'pleasure principle' (Websters)  This is the main appeal to their name.
    4. Last but certainly not least, the Garg, in their first shareware game (Keen 1) was the iD incarnate!

  • Museum Art  - Tom Hall sketched 4 very rough pictures to be considered for the title image.  Adrian Carmack then too each one and developed them.  The third of Tom's 4 pictures is the one we've come to see as the title page of Wolf3d.  Tom Hall was the creative director on these projects, and would supply the artists with concept sketches for just about everything in the games.  The artists then turned these crude drawings into the characters and screens we all see in the final products.

  • The Missing Key - In episode 1 of Wolfenstein 3d, only the gold key was used, to make the puzzles (maps) easier to solve.  Only in the next 5 episodes did they use the silver key.

  • Engine John - The part of the game engine that actually puts the graphics onto the screen.  This cool texture mapped engine was written by the resident technical "soopah genius", John Carmack.  By the time Wolf 3d was released, he was already disgusted with the technology and was working on new ideas like rendering holographic worlds (On his way to Doom).

  • The Music Man - Robert Prince, the musician, was originally a lawyer.  He got tired of the legal games and decided to pursue his second love - Music.  He provided the music for both Wolf 3d and Spear of Destiny.  The guys at iD used to joke that their music was done by "Prince".

  • The Way to Play - Who has the fastest record for completing episode 1 from start to finish?  Well, way back when, John Romero did it in 5 minutes and 20 seconds.   Wow... 10 levels.  That was going for only the fastest path to the elevator.  He welcomes all challengers!

  • Got Bugs... Use Off - The first shareware release (upload) had a bug where if you saved and reloaded, your time wasn't accurate.  Version 1.1 fixed the problem (this also changed all the verification codes).  This is the only version that was valid for attempting John's challenge.

  • Mysterious Music - No, it's just Robert's Jukebox.  A random menu (there are 3 different menus) of 6 songs will appear, for registered (full) versions only.  Hold the M key as the intro screen displays to bring it up.  Shareware users may have problems playing songs that weren't released with the shareware episode (even though they appear on the menu).

  • Secret Song - There is a morse code message for BJ hidden within a song in episode 3.  For those morse challenged, the message reads: "To Big Bad Wolf...  De Little Red Riding Hood... Eliminate Hitler... Imperative... Complete Mission within 24 Hours.... Out" ( De is radio slang for the word 'from').

  • Clockin' the Shabs - The boys at iD had quite the imagination, and were into jokes.  Doctor Schabbs is one of them.  The inside joke was that whenever something lacked quality, they would say 'Shabs' or 'Clockin' the Shabs'.   Someones attitude became 'Shabatude' or a bad apartment became 'shabitations'.  They also liked to add the extension 'ness' to words.  Something like hungry for food became 'foodness'.

  • Stories from your Childhood - Remember the story of Hansel and Gretel?  Well, the boys at iD did and have taken it beyond how the witch lured them into the Gingerbread house.  The family that has returned and are so tough that they would not only have eaten the house, but would have pulled the witch outside and forced her to do that "Ack Ack" dance!

  • Wayside Ideas - Ideas for the game were scrapped due to lack of space, lack of quality, or just plain lack of taste!  Some of them included things like: Youths attacking with knives, hidden David Puke wall posters (as they called David Duke so as not to be sued for defamation).  They even decided not to depict other Nazi atrocities as it was decided that people would think that they were making light of them.  They decided to stick to reflecting the more realistic image of war.

  • Theory of Relativity - No, definitely 'non-brotherness'.  Adrian Carmack and John Carmack, while sharing the same last name, come from completely different places and families.  There may be a connection somewhere back in the family tree, but who knows which branch.

  • The Never Starting Contest - Scott Miller of Apogee Software came up with a contest idea.  You might have seen it...  the Arrdwolf sign?  Well, the first person to find it was supposed to call Apogee and would win, but unfortunately a simple concept was ruined with many people making editors that showed both the graphic and the location in the maps.  iD and Apogee decided that the contest couldn't be fair and didn't want to reward anyone for hacking into their game, rather than someone who had actually played the game.  So the contest was called off.  To this day, people are still calling and saying "Arrdwolf".   Chances are when you find this you may need to reboot, as seeing it, usually means you've blocked yourself in within the maze.

  • Early Stages - Did you know that the original concept for Wolfenstein 3d included dragging bodies, silent attacks, and even changing uniforms.  Yes, it's true....  The programming was already completed, but the intricate actions made the gameplay too difficult and required several extra key sequences.  Basically you would have to play via keyboard and it would slow down the games action.  Can you say 'goneness'.  They did to these and other ideas.

  • Delayed Development - With the release of games like: Neo-Geo Fatal Fury (Jay Wilbur called it 'Fatal Production') and SuperNintendo's Street Fighter II, the makers of Spear of Destiny were hindered in the development of the Spear project.  All the guys could say was "Thanks a lot, you other dang game makers".

  • Two Faced B.J. - More inventiveness from the iD team as they wanted the game to show it's impatience as you stood there trying to decide what yo do next.  That's right, in Spear of Destiny if you don't move for 30 seconds B.J. on the status bar starts to become impatient.  Also, if you cheat and enter God mode (indestructible), the eyes on B.J. on the status bar start to glow in a golden light.

  • Degrees & Minutes - It's not about time or tangents on a map, but rather two of the people at iD (at the time of Spear of Destiny's creation) had programming degrees.  Funny fact is that neither of them of them program.  Also there was another college graduate in the Artistic department... but their degree was in political science.

  • The Spot - The oldest employee at iD Software is given the Hag Spot prize.  The Hag is revered by the rest of the members of iD as someone with great wisdom. At the time of Spears design, the holder of the hag was just 31 years old, and revered for his ancient knowledge of the 1970's.  Knowledge, which at the time, frightened and confused the rest of the iD crew. 

  • Where's the Bunny? - Have you heard about the mystery of the hidden iD.  Yes, the guys gave Spear of Destiny an Easter Egg present.  Immediately after changing the view screen size down and pressing enter, hold the I & D keys down until you hear the music change.  You'll be rewarded with a picture of the guys from iD Software (1993).

  • The Spark of the Spear - Kevin Cloud, an artist/layout person, mentioned the name "Spear of Destiny" after he saw it discussed on a TV show called 'Now it Can be Told'.  He later found a comic book by DC comics, which was all about the Spear and Hilter.  Tom Hall loved the name and concept so much, that it became the central theme and namesake of what we now know as 'Spear of Destiny'.

  • NAZI - The word "Nazi" is an acronym formed from the first syllable of NAtional and the second syllable of SoZIalist.  This method of creating words or terms was popular in the Third Reich. Another example is Gestapo which is formed from GEheime STAatsPOlizei (Secret State Police).

    The Nazis were strongly drawn to symbolism and placed an almost holy status on some symbols.

  • The Swastika - The swastika (hakenkreuz) is most often associated with the Nazis, but was used by many cultures for thousands of years before being adopted as the official emblem of the Nazi party. As early as the fourth millennium B.C., swastikas appeared on ceramics in Iran. Later it appeared in Troy, Greece, India, Tibet and Japan. Sometimes the swastika was used as a religious symbol. American Indians often used the symbol in their handicraft work.

  • The Runes - 'Rune' means 'secret script' - rune characters were used in pre-Christian Europe by the Germanic tribes for magical and ordinary writing. In the 1st century Germans used runes as a method of gaining insight into the future or the unknown by supernatural means. By the early 20th century, some groups, notably the Thule Society, began looking again to runes. The Nazi "SS" symbol is drawn as a rune consisting of two lightning bolts. Lightning is associated with evil and the devil.

  • Dr. Paul Joseph Goebbels - It was the Dr. who popularized the swastika as the official Nazi emblem. Goebbels was Hitler s Reich Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda. Goebbels is said to be more responsible for Hitler s rise to power than any other individual. Here is an interesting quote from Goebbels: 

    "Propaganda can be taught by the average person, like playing a violin. But there comes a point at which one must say:  This is where you stop. What remains to be learned can be achieved only by a genius!  What else is Jesus Christ? Did he not make Propaganda? Did he write books or did he preach? And what about Muhammad? Did he compose sophisticated essays, or did he go to the people and tell them what he wanted? Were not Buddha and Zoroaster propagandists?"

  • The Hitler Salute - The famous Hitler Salute was performed when Nazis greeted each other. Originally, Hitler had instituted a traditional military salute, hand to cap. However, the young Storm Troopers of the SA (precursors to the SS), had no military training and found that the regular salute too much effort and started greeting their comrades with a wave of the hand!
    As it developed, the salute stiffened into a quick upward thrust, typically accompanied with the phrase "Heil Hitler!"

  • The SS - The Schutztaffel (Elite Guard) originated as Hitler's personal body guard.

  • Albert Einstein - At the time when Hitler came to power in 1933, Einstein was in California. As the world's most famous living Jew, Einstein was a prime target of Nazi hostility and his post in Berlin was taken away from him almost immediately. Although retiring by nature, Einstein was resolute in his opposition to Hitler and Nazism. In 1939, Einstein signed a letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt noting German advances in physics and warned of the real possibility of the Nazis developing a uranium bomb.

  • Operation Flash - In 1943, an attempt on Hitler s life failed due to a defective detonator. On March 13, 1943 Maj. Gen. Henning von Tresckow asked Col. Heinz Brandt to take some brandy to an old friend   Brandt agreed. Brandt unsuspectingly took the package containing a time-delayed bomb aboard the Fuehrer s plane. When news came two and one-half hours later that Hitler had arrived safely, von Tresckow had to deal with a problem he hadn t expected   retrieving the defective bomb. He telephoned Brandt and asked that he hold the gift until he arrived: the date was wrong. Von Tresckow arrived with two bottles of real brandy and exchanged it for the package containing the faulty bomb. Later that evening he dismantled the bomb in a railway car.

  • The Thule Society - This secret society worshiped the sun as a sacred symbol of the Aryans. It also practiced Satan worship   the inner core of the society were all Satanists who practiced Black Magic. Members of the society were not simply working-men, but included scientists, doctors, university professors and other men of high standing. The members of the Thule Society were the foundation of the Nazi Party. The committee and the forty original members of the New German Worker s Party were all from the Thule Society. In the Thule Society, Hitler found the perverted beliefs that were to lead him to power and have such a devastating effect on the world. Dietrich Eckart was a dedicated Satanist and co-founder of both the Nazi party and the Thule Society.

    On his death bed, Eckart is quoted: "Follow Hitler. He will dance, but it is I who have called the tune! I have initiated him into the 'Secret Doctrine' - opened his centers in vision and given him the means to communicate with the Powers. Do not mourn for me as I shall have influenced history more than any German."

  • The Death's Head - The one symbol most firmly associated with the SS is The Death s Head or Totenkopf. The grinning skull and crossed bones could be seen on Nazi caps, daggers, jackets and other articles.

  • The Death Head's Ring - Struck in solid silver, The SS Death's Head Ring was instituted by Himmler in 1934 as a symbol of recognition of loyalty to Hitler and his ideals. The design of the ring was adapted from Pagan Germanic mythology   Thor had a silver ring on which oaths could be taken - and binding treaties were carved in Runes on Wotan s spear. On either side of the Totenkopf, the ring was embossed with numerous symbolic runes. 

    The rings were held in such reverence that when an SS soldier was killed in action the ring had to be retrieved from the body. Himmler kept these retrieved rings at his castle in Wewelsburg as a "Shrine to Holders of the Death s Head Ring".

    To prevent the allies from capturing the rings, Himmler ordered that the rings from the Shrine be blast-sealed into the side of the mountain near his castle in the spring of 1945. They have never been found.


The iD Crew

Here is the list of people working on the Wolfenstein and Spear of Destiny Projects:

  • Wolfenstein 3d

  • Spear of Destiny

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