Quoted from PinballNewb:
Hell yes! I remember when I first started on a 56k connection and playing as a soldier with a machine gun
Back before you needed progression and unlock systems. Before you needed 80 different guns in a game. The reward wasn’t in unlocks. The reward was the gameplay, teamwork, and just fun itself. Truly one of the most underrated games ever.
And yes, an actual server list where individual communities can be built and thrive.
Dirty Bomb is as close of a feeling in modern games today, but it’s still not that close.
Edit: Instead of “hell yes” I should say v57. I can probably still recall every “v say” by muscle memory lol.
Omg yes... dedicated servers are so nice. Played for what seemed like years on Timelord and became so close with those folks in an era before "online friends" were popular. Used to post soooo much on PlanetWolfenstein, used this user name back then as well (full spelling with two ll's). Sad that all of that is pretty much lost to the interwebs - I still have a search mention that hit in some level design readme's and archive junk but the real fun is only in my memory.
ET was fun too but felt like it grew a bit too far from the source material. Once the allure of vehicles and ranking up wore off it really wasn't as strong of a game imo. Dirty Bomb piqued my interest but never tried it once I realized it wasn't what I was looking for.
And the v-chats.... oh it was years before I could stop thinking in v-chat "V56" commands for online gaming. Again, in the era before voice chat being a thing (bandwidth was a real issue) I wondered why other games didn't straight up copy it. Once you knew the system, hamming out a v-chat request or statement was so fast.
Fun fact; in my level design days for RtCW I built a dozen or so MP maps for fun but I only released one map publically along with another fellow by the name of Hummer called "Train Siege". He has a number of wonderful maps to his name (Kung Fu Grip probably his most famous) and our joint project was one of the more unique takes on a competitive, interactive, and unique win condition map. It sadly came out near the end of RtCW's life and didn't see much play, but Hummer went on to get hired by Grey Matter to build the original Call of Duty expansion, then they were later bought out by Treyarch where he worked on more CoD and eventually invented and designed the "Zombie Nazi" mode in CoD: World at War. I believe he then ended up working on Halo 4 for 343 studios/ Microsoft, and now calls Infinity Ward home. Very cool career path - haven't talked to him in years, but I believe he's loving it.
Thanks again for bringing back the memories!