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Video Game / Nitemare 3D

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Nitemare 3D is a haunted-house-themed First-Person Shooter for DOS and Windows 3.1 PCs, based on the Wolfenstein 3-D engine and released in 1994. It was nominally a follow-up to the Hugo's House of Horrors series of adventure games, but instead of solving tricky Adventure Game puzzles, you just shoot stuff.

Well, and collect keys and cards needed to advance to the next level. And find hidden passages. And solve the occasional Block Puzzle.

The game expanded greatly on the concept introduced by Wolf3D, with the aforementioned keys and cards as well as an on-screen minimap showing the nearby areas you've visited and any enemies in the vicinity.

Still has a cult following, due in part to being continually updated for compatibility with the latest version of Windows.

This game provides examples of:

  • Actionized Sequel: Obviously, being an FPS sequel to an adventure game.
  • Blackout Basement: One sequence in Level 1-7 has the storm blow out the fuse.
  • Block Puzzle: Possibly the first FPS to use these.
  • Bloodless Carnage: In contrast to its famous predecessor, enemies don't even fall down dead (except for bats); they either simply vanish when killed or morph into tombstones or... flower pots.
  • Bookcase Passage: Tons of secret sliding panels, which, aside from the actual bookcases, are impossible to tell from the regular walls without your handy secret-panel-detecting eyeballs.
  • Call-Back: To the Hugo series — the first safe is unlocked with the combination 333.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Enemies that shoot can shoot around corners you can't even see around. Possibly just a side effect of poor programming, though.
  • Dem Bones: Skeletons that throw flaming bones, or something. The projectiles are actually torches, though if you're close enough to make that out when they throw one, you're about to take a lot of damage.
  • Enemy-Detecting Radar: Collecting the floating crystal balls fuels an overlay for your Level-Map Display that shows enemies in red.
  • Expressive Health Bar: The skin wears away on your face (albeit with no blood) for every 10% health lost, leaving you on just a skull when you're on your last 10% health. When you die, the skull goes dark.
  • Family-Friendly Firearms: The game starts you off with a plasma gun despite the current-day setting. In level three, however, you find the pistol - which, in keeping with the classic horror theme, uses silver bullets. This is the actual reason for the plasma gun; its obvious futurism contrasts better with the more antique pistol as a hint you should be using specific weapons against "mad scientist", "gothic", and "magical" monsters.
  • Genre Shift: The first three Hugo games are Adventure Games; this one is a First-Person Shooter.
  • Healing Potion: The standard healing item. There's also the Pentagram of Good Heath, which immediately restores you to full health even if you're on the brink of death.
  • Hitscan: The advantage of the pistol. Enemies with ranged attacks are hitscan-based as well. Even the skeletons.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Similar to the ending of the final stage of Doom's Knee-Deep in the Dead episode, when you first face off against Hammerstein he will simply taunt you and deplete your health all the way to zero, ending the first episode on a Cliffhanger.
    Dr. Hammerstein: So! You have discovered me! Fool! Did you really think you could defeat me? You have no idea of my power! Bid farewell my friend! 'Tis the end for you!
  • 100% Completion: Hitting TAB brings up a chart of how many enemies there are left to kill and how many secret panels have yet to be found.
  • Kinetic Weapons Are Just Better: The plasma guns and magic wand all fire relatively slow-moving projectiles. The pistol hits its target instantly (albeit with more of a delay between shots and the inability to blow the exploding walls), making it a godsend for enemies whose ranged attacks do likewise.
  • Level-Map Display: The aforementioned map in your HUD, which drains a meter powered by giant floating collectable eyeballs.
  • Locked Door: Every wooden door is initially locked, and you will need one of up to four color-coded keys (depending on the level) to open them. The final door of each level also requires an ID card to unlock, and if there are any wooden doors in the level, you can bet that card will be behind one of them.
  • Made of Explodium: Some of the specially-marked walls.
  • Mummy: One of the early enemies.
  • Our Gargoyles Rock: Two of the enemy types are gargoyles, which is the name they have in the game data. One looks like a humanoid goat and is found among the hedges. The normal statues appear as early as the first episode's second level, while the animate ones show up starting the eight levels. The other can be described as a batlike minotaur and inhabits niches within grey stone walls. Both the unliving and living variants show up starting the sixth level of the first episode.
  • The Power of Rock: In Level 1-9, switching on a radio makes enemies dance out of your way. Good thing, too, because your weapon jams just as you enter that room.
  • Secret Level: Level 1-5.
  • Shareware: Just like Wolfenstein, the first ten-level "episode" was free, and registering got you the other two.
  • Shout-Out: To Alfred, Lord Tennyson's "The Lady of Shalott", when you go through the mirror in level 1-10: the mirror is now broken, preventing you from returning, and attempting to Use it displays the text "The mirror crack'd from side to side!"
  • Standard FPS Guns: Averted. There is a pistol, but it's the last of the three weapons you find. The others are a Plasma Gun (which kinda fits as a first weapon but only as it's handgun-shaped) and a Magic Wand.
  • Unwinnable by Design: Most of the time, you'll want to kill off any enemy around as soon as possible, but in a select few situations you'll need to coax enemies into blocking off certain passageways. Killing those enemies too soon makes the level unwinnable. Also, failing some of the block puzzles.
  • Wicked Witch: Two standard Halloween-style witches (white and black) and one blue-robed sorceress, referred to in the game data as "Vampira", "Zelda", and "Mrs. H" respectively.