Duke Nukem Forever

It's hilarious what Duke says when you grab a turd. Bum rush the alien boss, good plan.
I'd do the glasses wearing girl. Even aliens have to work out.
I suck at pinball. Never got the ego boosts from them. Shooting down the mothership.
Mini-Duke, how cute. Expect some jabs at other games and movies.
I don't know, I don't think three tits are better than two. One of my favorite parts of the game.
Underwater boss fight. Duke for Prez!

Finally, it’s out. I still can’t believe it, am I dreaming? *Pinches myself* Well looks like I’m awake. It’s real: Duke Nukem Forever has been released after fourteen years! I have been a huge fan of the influential Duke Nukem 3D, and its 2D side-scrolling predecessors, so Duke Nukem Forever has been at the back of my mind throughout those years. And after beating it, well, suffice to say it was underwhelming, and it’s not just because it feels like a two year content game that has taken fourteen years to complete.
Some technical background: I played the computer version of this game, which I ran at 1600×1200 resolution at ultra high settings and anti-aliasing. My framerates averaged between 30-40 most of the times according to FRAPS. I played on hard difficulty, and it is a decent challenge as I did die quite a few times. But the game is fairly short, lasting somewhere between 5-10 hours. After being spoiled by Crysis 2 and Metro 2033, the graphics of Duke Nukem Forever seem average in comparison.
Now the disappointments, as I have said, the main disconnect is our sky-high, some may say even unattainable, expectations that has been built up over the years. After fourteen years in development, one would expect a masterpiece, a revolution, an unquestionable game of the year. Alas, it isn’t any of that. That’s not to say this is a terrible game, I can see Gearbox really tried hard, and Duke Nukem Forever is a decent shooter. But that’s the problem, being just another shooter doesn’t justify one of the longest development time in history, nor live up to the Duke Nukem franchise. And that’s unfortunate.
When I played Duke Nukem 3D I was an adolescent, and Duke’s adolescent humor was just the thing to crack me up. Now, fourteen years has passed, and I’ve matured…but the franchise’s humor hasn’t. So, while I was playing Duke Nukem Forever, sure I had a few grins here and there, but I wasn’t laughing as hard as I did when I was eleven.
Also, despite the great technical advances over the years, in terms of level size, Duke Nukem Forever actually feels like a smaller game than Duke Nukem 3D. One glaring omission (and cause) in Forever is the lack of jetpacks. In 3D I had tons of fun flying all over the vertically huge maps with jetpacks. Forever‘s map design is very linear in comparison to 3D, and spends most of its time indoors with narrow corridors and small rooms.
And there are the numerous pet peeves that comes with a game that is adapted for multiple platforms. Long load times, check point saves, and idiot friendly highlights/indicators. Boss fights are all identical: shoot boss with explosives until their hitpoints run out, then run up to them to perform killing blow. Rinse, repeat. I know Duke Nukem is suppose to be a “point A to point B, shooting a lot of things in between” game, but I wish there was a bit more creativity or variation in the big fights.
If you’re a fan of Duke, after all these years of waiting, you might as well play it for the sake of your fandom. For everyone else, Duke Nukem Forever is little more than a Duke flavored shooter.

Published in: on June 20, 2011 at 8:05 pm  Leave a Comment  

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