Darren Franich
May 10, 2012 AT 07:05 PM EDT

Two decades ago — long before the Call of Duty franchise become the national pastime of fifth graders and adults too simple to handle Battlefield — the era of the first-person shooter officially began with Wolfenstein 3D. In the game, you played as a captured American superguy shooting his way through wave after wave of despicable Nazis with terrible aim. (Who can forget the soul-searing showdown with Robo-Suit Hitler?) The game ushered in an era of blood-spattered videogame controversy — it came out one month before Mortal Kombat and was the spiritual predecessor of the parental-nightmare that was Doom — but it’s actually rather charming now. I know, because I just spent an hour playing the free version of Wolfenstein that Bethesda has kindly put up on their website. Do yourself a favor and give it a playthrough. Warning: You have to shoot dogs. But don’t worry. They’re fascist dogs.

Follow Darren on Twitter: @EWDarrenFranich

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