Kreml 3D

Written by Profile picture for user Zombie Zombie. Published Tuesday, October 31, 2023 - 22:30

In these days of Wolf4SDL, LZWolf, and general advancement of modding, projects that exceed the original Wolfenstein 3D in features and scope are reasonably common.

Back in 2003 however, modding using changes to the source code was still in it's infancy. People were still fumbling around discovering things, and major features like floor and ceiling textures were still new.

So when Kreml 3D was announced, it caught immediate interest from the general community.

Kreml 3D Title Screen


Initially conceived of in mid-2002 by Martin Krysiak, Kreml 3D set itself apart from the typical Wolfenstein 3D project by planning to pit the player against Communist enemies from the USSR as opposed to Germany. He worked on the concept over the rest of that year, with some graphics and levels being designed, as well as implementing early code changes. By the end of that first six months, the first iteration of levels for Episode One were complete.

It was at this point that development shifted, and Martin started forming a team to work on the game. These included initial members like Dugtrio17 and Zach Higgins, and eventually extended to include Adam Biser as an additional programmer, as well as Wolf Skevos-Jones and Majik Monkee as artists. Early versions of the game included a "Friendly Fire" feature created by MCS as well.

After a short break following Dugtrio17 joining as a programmer, early 2003 was a prolific time for Kreml 3D. Multiple new features were implemented, including the addition of new weapons (such as the ever-classic Rocket Launcher) and significantly, floor and ceiling textures.
At the time, "flats" as they are referred to now weren't as common, and combined with the impressive art supplied by multiple members of the team set to further define the game as something significant in the community.

Shot1 Shot2 Shot3
Over the course of development, the statusbar changed multiple times.

Ambitions were high, with new features being thought up and implemented including the addition of an RPG-like experience and leveling system, and a bouncing grenade weapon.

Snow SniperThe changes to the engine would be significant enough to require a redesign of the levels already created, which caused delays in September 2003 that would be amplified by corrupt game file issues in January the next year. Despite these setbacks, Martin pushed forward with vocal support from members of the community, continuing to work on the game and create new ideas.

School and real life would -as always- slow progress down. Intermittent updates would be released throughout the year, with indications that the first levels of the game were finished, and new art and source code changes were being developed until late 2004.

After December though, things went quiet..

What Happened?

Kreml 3D

Besides a couple of new (and tantilizing) screenshots, not much progress or news whatsoever would be seen on Kreml 3D for a number of years. This was attributed -as is almost always- to real life and schooling intervening.

Martin returned to the DieHard Wolfers Message Board briefly in 2014 and revealed that a game-breaking bug was actually discovered in the late stages of development which hindered the creation of save game files. The bug was significant, and hurt the movement of the project.
Martin also took this time to let the community know he suffered an accident in 2005 that left him unable to focus on Wolf3D for a number of years while he underwent physical rehabilitation. With life pushing him in other directions, interest in Wolf3D waned and by extension so did development of Kreml 3D, sadly.

While the project is stuck in a state of limbo, it is confirmed that there are backups of various stages of the game's development in existence, and we may still see the game come to light, should Martin ever return to the community!

For now though, all we have are the screenshots, and hope.