Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Duke Nukem Forever (PC)

Duke Nukem Forever title
Here's a game I've been wanting to play for the site for a while. Today I have the pleasure of being able to show off the first few hours of the controversial Duke Nukem Forever!

Everyone knows that Duke Nukem Forever was left in the oven a little too long and if you've ever visited http://duke.a-13.net/ you could probably list a fair number of things that have come out while the game's been in development as well (like six Final Fantasy games, the first seven Call of Duty games, every Infinity Engine game, the entirety of the Unreal and Half-Life franchises etc.). But it's hard to visualise exactly just how long FIFTEEN YEARS really is... unless you have a handy chart full of games to compare it to I guess.

Luckily I just so happen to have one right here:

(All dates come from the internet, so... you know.)
Man, poor Daikatana; even its excessive delay was relatively mediocre.

To give this list some context, a top tier first person shooter in the mid 90s took on average about a year and a half of development time to get from concept to retail shelves (well, mailboxes in Doom's case) and Duke Nukem Forever was originally intended for release in mid 1998 or earlier. Daikatana by the way was originally intended to be finished in seven months.

(Clicking the rest of these images will likely give you a better look at them).

Straight away the game tries to latch onto my fond memories of the first game by showing a stylised montage of Duke Nukem 3D's most memorable scenes. Oh sorry, I mean the third game. I honestly keep forgetting that Duke 3D wasn't the beginning of the series (though I suppose the clue is in the name, just like there's a subtle clue in Duke Nukem Fo(u)rever's title that it's the fourth game).

But then I choose to start a new game and DNF immediate goes and ruins the goodwill its earned. The screen goes black and Duke's voice proclaims that "Those alien bastards are going to pay for shooting up my ride," like a cheesy comedian starting their act with a well worn catchphrase, long after everyone's forgotten what it originally meant. Then it puts the phrase "It's Time To Kick Ass And Chew Bubblegum..." up on screen as well, just because.
"Your face. Your ass. What's the difference?"
See, I can random quote things from that old videogame everyone liked as well!

Well... okay then.

This is exactly how the game starts, I promise you. 3D Realms apparently noticed that taking a leak was a popular feature in the first game and have put more of a focus on it this time around. Though to be honest the scene is eventually justified by the helpful Earth Defence Force soldier trying to offer advice from the sidelines when you leave Duke standing there and refuse to play along.

Right, before I set off I should do my pre-flight checks.
  • Can I see Duke's feet? Check!
  • Does the game have working mirrors? Check.
  • Can I interact with everything in the room even though it serves zero purpose? Check.
  • Do I have a map screen? Nope.
Can't win 'em all I guess. Where am I anyway? It looks like the shower room of some kind of stadium.

I met up with some EDF troops in the lounge next door and found that they were analysing an attack plan drawn up on a white board. So I wiped it off and drew a helicopter instead.

I gotta say though, this has got to be the most awkward white board I've ever used in a first person shooter. The end of the pen isn't lined up with the crosshair for one thing and the camera's so close up that it starts to tilt when I move away from the center. Also it doesn't work well with a graphic tablet at all in my experience; very disappointing.

Plus the bloody EDF soldier keeps repeating that the red pen smells like cherries and there's no button here that lets me enthusiastically insert the thing into his brain via the nasal cavity.

Anyway I suppose I should go out onto the field and kill this creature we all came here to stop.

You know, this is all looks very familiar somehow, or at least it would do if I could see a damn thing. They've pulled a Symphony of the Night and turned the last boss of Duke Nukem 3D into the first enemy of the game.

Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition (PC)
He's definitely a lot less of a pain in the ass than he used to be, which suits me as the game uses checkpoints instead of the quick saves I relied on as a crutch to kill the guy in Duke 3D back in the day.

But (shocking plot twist), it turns out that the flashback was all just a video game! A video game that took twelve years to make in fact, in an example of self-depreciating meta humour. It's also a clue that the script was written in 2008.

These two are the Holsom twins, (not to be confused with the Olsen twins): a pair of giggling pop stars who seem to love Duke almost as much as he does. They're offensively rich, impossibly famous, vapid, childish, and they communicate with sexual innuendos... so the three of them were basically made for each other.

Though I'm not entirely sure why I'm here relaxing at home with Duke's girlfriends instead of shooting aliens in the face. It's been like ten minutes... I could've been halfway through level three of Duke Nukem 3D by now!

Duke Nukem Forever E3 2001 Trailer
Meanwhile here's a glimpse of a dark alternate history where DNF came out around 2001 instead of 2011. Not the same character, but it gives an idea of how much the character models have changed in ten years. That's the trouble with delays really; once you hit a certain point you have to basically rebuild all the art to keep up with other games.

After the exciting 'walk around Duke's apartment' level comes the thrilling 'walk down a few similar looking corridors' level.

I have to get to Duke's own personal in-house talk show studio below his apartment to take part in an interview. I haven't got a clue how to get where I'm headed as no one thought to give me directions (or an automap...), but that's fine as there's only really one way to go.

Well I'm still not shooting anything, though I did find a book to sign! Yep they've seriously had more drawing minigames than enemies so far. Shame the pen obscures what I'm writing so I'm having to do it blind, though I do appreciate they thought to bring back the book that Duke was promoting way back in Duke Nukem II's intro.

You know, I'm not actually bothered by the slow beginning as much as I should be. You run around plenty of hallways and offices in Duke Nukem 3D, but it's so weird to walk through them and interact with people on a normal day before everything has started exploding.

Not that I can actually interact with people, I just sort of run into them along the way and have to wait for their thing to finish, trapped behind an invisible wall.

Not that I can actually run at this point...

Crap, Duke's talk show appearance has been cancelled due to an impeding alien invasion! Still at least that means he can't get kidnapped by the aliens halfway through his interview this time, like he was in the intro of Duke Nukem II.

By the way, there's a reason I took the shot at such a weird angle and that's because I was trying to match this shot from the 2006 trailer.

Duke Nukem Forever 2006 Trailer
Advances in computer hardware over the next seven years gave the developers the ability to change the logo, swap out the carpet and add some cameras.

But hey, I have at last managed to find a place in one of the trailers that exists in the finished game!

You'd think that aliens showing up and stealing my spotlight would mean that it's time for me to grab my shotgun and leap into action, but nope. No leaping and no action.

Though I do get to take part in a skit based on Christian Bale's outburst during the making of Terminator Salvation. You remember that right? It hit the news just over two years before the game came out. Do you remember Terminator Salvation at least? Never mind then.

Honestly this is probably my favourite one of these scenes in the game so far, because it's the first I've been able to walk right past and ignore.

But then just as I'm getting complacent, aliens begin to swarm all over the building! No seriously they do, I just don't get to fight any of them because they're pretty much keeping to the other side of the windows for the time being, just minding their own business, crawling up the walls.

I appreciate that the developers are trying to build up an atmosphere here, but they chose the wrong game series to do it in. Duke Nukem is about having two lines of plot set up and then a whole lot of putting boot to ass. No matter what they put into this intro level it'll never be as interesting as a pure combat level, because.... wait is this a Duke Nukem museum I've just wandered into?

Fuck killing aliens, I'ma go look around.

See, that's how to start a Duke Nukem story! So sweet and to the point that you could basically frame it, stick it on your wall, and call it art. Though hang on, didn't he say he was going to watch Oprah in the original game? Shameful revisionism!

There's a lift outside waiting to take me down to the Duke Cave, so I should probably keep moving. I'll need some guns if I'm going to be shooting aliens (I really hope I eventually get to shoot some aliens) and if there's one place in Las Vegas I'm likely to find a semi-automatic rocket launcher, it's going to be Duke's basement. 

Oh shit, there are aliens in my personal gym! You'd better believe this guy's getting one of my trophies in the back of his neck. Enough screwing around, it's finally time for me to do my action hero thing!

Actually no, this room seems to have more toys to play with than the rest of the building so far combined, so now I gotta hang around and have a go of them all. No really, I do, because every new activity I take part in awards me with a permanent increases to my ego (health) bar. It's a bit like how F.E.A.R. encourages you to hunt around for health upgrades, except instead of exploration it's procrastination I'm being rewarded for.

In Duke Nukem 3D when you try to play on a Duke Nukem arcade machine Duke says "I don't have time to play with myself." I guess that's the main difference between the two games right there. Now he does have the time, to stop and play with everything.

Duke Nukem Forever E3 2001 Trailer
This focus on interactivity over gameplay seems to have been a selling point of the game from early on, seeing as the pinball table shows up way back in the 2001 trailer. Probably wasn't much fun back then either.

Yeah, why am I still playing pinball anyway when I could be crawling through vents and throwing trophies at aliens! The only thing holding me back right now is me.

Also this car puzzle, this is holding me back too.

The room is a variation on the remote controlled car key pushing minigame from Shadow Warrior (except with added physics), where I have to drive the car around shelves to knock a power cell onto the floor and shove it through an air vent. Personally I think it's pretty well made for what it is and it would've been a nice short break in the action if there'd been any real action up to this point to take a break from.

I don't know, maybe I'm just dragging my own preconceptions into the game, instead of judging it for what it is. Duke Nukem 1 and 2 were platformers, Duke 3D was a first person shooter, and Duke Nukem Forever is apparently a series of minigames and comedy skits.

Finally, a proper pistol! A beautiful gold painted Colt M1911 with little nuclear symbols etched all over it. There's an achievement for carrying this thing through to the end of the game, which seems pretty redundant to me because who would ever have the heart to drop it?

There's no button to aim down sights, which surprises me, but I can zoom in a bit which serves the same purpose. It even works with the fists, in case I want to do a bit of sniper punching. Also headshots seem to do more damage now, even if they're not instant kills, so that's one definite improvement over Duke 3D.

Oh btw, I think my Time to Gun was about 40 minutes counting from the time Duke put his controller down back in the penthouse, though to be fair I was taking screens and making notes so I wasn't exactly in a rush. You could probably get hold of a crappy alien plasma weapon in say... half an hour if you tried!


FIVE MINUTES LATER.


Oh, I guess all the first person running and gunning is over then? Now it's just gunning as I've been strapped onto a turret and forced to leave my crosshairs aimed at that giant impossible to miss mothership in the background and hold the trigger until the yellow bar goes all the way down. Sometimes I get to adjust my aim to shoot down waves of alien fighters as they make a strafing run, but it's more of an irritation than a relief. If I miss two waves in a row then I'm fucked.

I can imagine this being a nightmare on harder difficulty levels, especially if you're playing a console version with the ridiculous loading times, but on standard difficulty it ain't so bad. I wouldn't call it entertaining though either, especially comparing it to the spectacular rail shooter level on the train in Bulletstorm, which was worth playing just for the visuals.

Alright the mothership is down, now can I do some first person shooting? Nope! First I've gotta play a bloody elevator braking minigame (seriously), and then...

...a driving level! Duke stepped on a shrink pod thing on the way out of the elevator so now he's the size of an action figure, but fortunately a woman identified in the subtitles only as 'MILF' brought her kid to the casino on the lower floors and he had a RC car for me to borrow! You know, the kind with a working miniature steering wheel and pedals that a very tiny person could get in and drive himself.

I'm aware that this level gets a lot of hate, but I like it, so there. If you can't find some joy in driving around a casino during the chaos of an alien invasion in a miniature buggy, jumping across chasms and ramming aliens in the ankle, then you're beyond hope. Or maybe you're completely uninvested in the game because it's spent the last hour fucking you around instead of letting you shoot stuff. That would make sense as well.

Though I admit it is a bit awkward when the car gets stuck on something or flipped over and I have to get out and push.

Well there's a shutter blocking my buggy, so now I have to do a little platforming to reach the switch and get it open. I have nothing against first person platforming when it's done right but this... okay it isn't so bad at all really. It's just a shame that's an isolated thing instead of more integrated into the level; a few enemies around for me to kill would've been cool too! The devs were nice enough to throw in a couple of rats to shoot, but it's just not the same.


FIVE MINUTES OF DRIVING LATER.


Oh shit, things have started happening! I found the Holsom twins again, grew back to full size, picked up a shotgun and now aliens are crashing in from the ceiling. I don't even know how to use this weapon anymore, it's been so long since the game's let me shoot something that my combat skills have withered away and atrophied to nothing.

I haven't mentioned anything about the game's combat yet because I haven't really had an opportunity to experience it properly until now, but it seems decent enough to me. I'm rushing around the pillars, taking shots when I can, and ducking behind one of them when my health needs a second to regenerate (which it often does, I can't take many hits). A bit of a shame I'm locked in this tiny room, but that's this game all over really.

Oh no, the invaders have kidnapped the Holsom twins! I would've stopped them except the two aliens involved were suddenly invulnerable during the cutscene. Now it's personal!

Well, I mean it was totally personal earlier seeing as they invaded both my casino and restaurant just at the right time to interrupt my talk show interview, but now it's extra personal.


A FEW LOCKED OFF ENEMY FIGHTIN' ROOMS LATER.


Hey, it's the infamous Halo power armour joke. I actually found this hilarious myself, purely because of the EDF guy's "Um... well, okay," response to Duke's "Power armor is for pussies," line. It's always nice to stumble across the occasional character who doesn't worship at the Church of Duke. Also Duke DID use armour in the last game and maybe if he put some on in this he wouldn't die in three hits.

Check out that box by the way. Across the land of DNF there are many like it, each giving me a full ammo refill of all guns, thus ensuring that I never have to do the slightest bit of exploration to hunt for resources! Obviously this isn't always a good thing and not something I'd want to see in every first person shooter but I have to come out and say that, well, I don't entirely hate it so far.

Bulletstorm has its own variety of this, handing out ammo and upgrades in a box after each section of a level in exchange for points earned through showing off in combat, which I think is a smarter way of handling it for games like this. Getting a free resupply in something like Rainbow Six makes sense, but in a Duke Nukem shooter ammo should be more of a reward.

Well now I'm out into the street I finally have the freedom to... walk down the road a little bit shooting aliens. Sure I had very little street to walk down in Duke Nukem 3D as well, but the cool thing about that game was that I'd be fighting through the offices, ducking into apartments and shooting up shops along the way. There's absolutely nowhere to go in this.

Oh by the way I had to replay this level to get a better screenshot, so that's why my 'ego' bar is much longer than it should be. The game has a chapter select, so I can replay levels on harder difficulties and find all the ego boost items I missed first time around. Definitely worthy of mention and praise, though it does mean I have to replay all the bullshit as well (fuck that elevator brake minigame bullshit, man).

Just down the road I'm locked in again for a boss fight, which means a lot of running back and forth to ammo boxes to get more rockets for my RPG, as it's the only weapon I've got that can hurt him. Well I suppose I could throw over some pipe bombs or drop laser trip mines around now that I think about it. It's nice that those get their own buttons now, I'm going to miss that when I go back to Duke 3D.

The game got a lot of complaints on release about the fact that you can only hold two guns, which makes a whole lot of sense in a game like Call of Duty, where half the guns are just variations on an assault rifle, but less sense in something like this where each weapon is part of a tool kit for disassembling different aliens. It definitely discourages holding on to the gimmick weapons, which is a basically a crime. To their credit though, the developers listened to criticism and eventually boosted the limit to four guns in a patch (though only on PC), so I can carry over half the Duke 3D arsenal at once right now.

It's just a shame they didn't let me carry more RPG ammo while they were at it. Only five shots, c'mon man! Fifty is what I'm used to.

Oh for fuck's sake... I shot him with like 15 rockets, isn't that enough? Nope, I gotta get up there and tap this button like a maniac to finish the job. Tap repeatedly to force door open, tap repeatedly to remove vent cover, tap repeatedly to break free, tap repeatedly to pump iron... I'm beginning to spot a pattern here.

Still, I suppose I should be grateful that I'm not forced to go through a QTE sequence to punch him in the balls afterwards or some dumb shit like that. Nope, Duke handles that one himself.

Anyway, now that I have killed the Battlelord, I'm free to carry on to the Duke Dome to rescue the Holsom twins and save the day!


CHAPTER EIGHT: THE HIVE.


Okay, what the fuck 3D Realms? How did anyone at that company think that this level was a good idea? Having to push around glowing balls that white out your night-vision is kind of annoying, bounce pads are weird, asshole doors you have to tickle to open... whatever; but then having rooms filled with crying naked women bound to the floors and ceilings in alien slime is just fucked up. Then halfway through I come across the Holsom twins apologising for being involuntarily impregnated by aliens and promising to get the weight off.

Duke's reaction to this? "Looks like you're fucked."

Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition (PC)
Now okay I realise that this isn't actually that far removed from alien victims found in Duke Nukem 3D and that's it's a parody of an sci-fi body horror trope, but there's a difference between a tasteless joke and hearing rooms full of realistically rendered innocent victims crying out in suffering before they violently explode into baby aliens, while the hero cracks wise. It's a step too far y'know?

Also it kind of makes Duke himself unlikeable. Sure he sounds upset when the Holsom twins explode in front of him, but he's knocked out soon afterwards and we take a detour into his nightmares for the next level, which takes place in...

... a strip club! Also it's not so much a 'nightmare' more of a 'night out'. The guy makes it through body horror hell, watches his girlfriends die horrifically, then thinks 'sure could do with a lap dance right about now'.

The only way out of his mind is to search every room in the place for three items, but it's okay for Duke to break into the dressing room and start stealing things from the lockers because he's the owner! The strippers even come up to tell him that it's the best place they've ever worked in.

So I've finally reached a level that encourages exploration and it's a bloody minigame hub! Air hockey and video poker, yay.

I know what this game reminds me of now: Prey. The alien hive level, the video poker machines, the look of the graphics, the gruesome deaths of everyone I'm encouraged to care about... they both start in a toilet as well. DNF could've come out in 2006 and fit in just fine.

Look at it! Look at what this game is making me do!

The thing is, I've already played through a level set in Duke's fantasy paradise: the skyscraper with his own personal casino, museum, death ray turret and talk show studio. He had pop star twins in the bedroom, photos of himself on every wall, people literally fainting when they meet him etc. But this is a man who fought aliens on the moon and he's dreaming about microwaving popcorn in the back room of a strip club?

3D Realms could have had one amazingly trippy dream sequence level here, as Duke processes what just happened and gets himself fired up for revenge. This would be a perfect place to throw in a bit of nostalgia, maybe a retro side-view platforming level seeing as they were so determined to break up the first person shooting. They could have even brought Duke back to the first level of Duke Nukem 3D!

Actually you can visit the classic Hollywood Holocaust level, but only in multiplayer and the place is a bit of a wreck these days. Actually this is a recreation of the street built inside Duke's Lady Killer casino as a paintball arena.

Duke Nukem 3D (MS-DOS)
Still, they got the look of the place right. It's just like coming home (and finding that the windows are boarded up and there's paint all over the walls).


LATER, AT A DUKE BURGER.


Meanwhile, back in the single player mode, I've successfully escaped unconsciousness only to be shrunk down again, and now I'm having a shoot-out on the shelves of a Duke Burger storeroom... with a railgun! So awesome. Look, it's doing the spiral smoke trail and everything! Man I am so easy to please.

It's just a shame that the music is still so... quiet. The gameplay has decided to show up, the level design is interesting for once, but the soundtrack isn't selling it.

I've heard a few complaints about this level in particular so I was expecting bad things, but it seems fine to me. In fact it's imaginative, well designed, filled with the good kind of dumb jokes and there's even a little bit of gunplay. I have to imagine that people who dislike the amount of jumping you have to do here to get around the electrified water must have really hated Half-Life, which was as much about the obstacle courses as it was about shooting things.

Speaking of Half-Life, I can just imagine this next bit suddenly appearing in the game development plan sometime in late 2004 after the team had a go of Valve's long awaited sequel and got up to the hovercraft levels.

This is long long long driving level, broken up with shooting stages as I get more fuel for my Mighty Foot truck. I'm finding it fairly entertaining (better than being trapped in my own talk show building for an hour), but it's not quite up to Half Life 2 standards.

But Half-Life 2 didn't let me take a pit stop at a wild west ghost town and have a good old fashioned shoot out with space outlaws, so it doesn't manage a flawless victory here. It's just a shame this level is so damn small, basically just a run to the barn and back. I get the feeling that the designers were seriously constrained by what they could fit into system memory. Fun while it lasted though.

Duke Nukem Forever E3 1998 Trailer
Hey you don't suppose this level could actually be what became of this town they showed off in the original 1998 version of the game? It does look kind of similar.

Anyway, I'm turning this off now.


CONCLUSION

Don't spend fifteen years making a video game, is probably the main conclusion I'm going to draw from this. Even if you release a work of unparalleled genius, it's never going to live up to the hype and at best it's going to appear like it's got one foot in an earlier decade (and in this case the other foot is stuck back in 2008). It's funny really, as the Duke Nukem Forever I'm playing now seems almost like a reimagined version of the proper game; a HD update of a remake of a classic that no one ever got to play. Not that there's anything necessarily wrong with scrapping a game midway through and starting again, titles like Resident Evil 4, Team Fortress 2 and Diablo III prove that approach can really pay off, but there comes a point where it's just being ridiculous.

Though now I'm wondering what would've happened if something like Metroid or Super Mario Bros. had been delayed 15 years. I mean they would've come out on the Game Cube...

Anyway what do I, an old school Duke Nukem 3D fan, really feel about this entertainment product that lies before me? Honestly, I've liked it so far. Despite all my whining, there is a fair amount of first person shooting in this and it's good old fashioned gunplay, encouraging the player to stay mobile and take risks rather than snipe from behind cover. Enemies are easy to spot and don't instantly snipe you on sight, so I'd put it ahead of games like Battlefield 3 and Shadow Warrior right away. Plus they have the decency to react to being hit, which makes the guns feel powerful and gives you the option to interrupt their shots; it's handy when you want to run out in the open without having to pull the laser bolts back out of your butt later.

That said, solid gameplay and a few moments of inspired creativity doesn't put it on the same level as something like Half-Life 2, Bulletstorm, or even Doom 3, and it really does sabotage itself by trying to offer variety and gimmicks no one wanted instead of extended shooting levels.

If only 3D Realms had managed to finish what they had back in 1998, got some feedback from critics and gamers, and then put their new ideas into a sequel instead of working in isolation and constantly restarting the project to keep pace with their rivals. This could've become a fantastic Duke Nukem 7 instead of a mediocre follow up to a genuine classic.


That's what I think about Duke Nukem Forever anyhow. It's possible you think differently though, so if you want to share your opinions about the game, my article, the site, or anything reasonably related you can do so with the handy comment box below.

10 comments:

  1. I wasn't expecting for a gold star in this one.
    But I kinda liked Duke Nukem 4ever. The problem was this long waiting, the expectation of the public only increased, and after 15 years the results were not that good. I think we all expected a Duke 3D - 2.
    And Duke 3D was much better, no doubt.

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  2. I've never liked Duke Nukem's humour. Where others see tongue-in-cheek crass comedy, I only see crass comedy.
    But maybe it's like Monty Python. I love Monty Python, but it becomes annoying after hearing the 500th idiot who quotes one of their sketches word for word.
    I don't really know where I'm going with this.

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  3. Ironically enough I found the biggest thing this game was lacking was more polish. The load times were atrocious and a lot of the refrences were kinda dated by the time the game came out, and 2 guns at a time is acceptable in more realistic games like COD but not for the duke. If this were polished up a bit to reduce the bugs and loading times and 30 bucks were taken off the price tag, this would have been totally worth it.

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    1. That's pretty much how I feel about it too. The way I heard it, 3D Realms realised at some point that they'd dragged out development so long that it wasn't financially sensible to release a purely PC shooter any more, but what they'd built so far hadn't been designed with consoles in mind, so they had to gut the levels to fit the game into the 360 and PS3's more limited memory. So they ended up with a game that was below par on consoles because of poor optimisation and dated visuals (amongst other reasons), and below par on PCs because it was now came across like a port of a crappy console port of itself.

      The PC version was eventually patched to reduce loading times, fix issues, and let players carry two extra guns, so that's probably a big factor in why I was able to find some joy in it.

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  4. Really nice writeup! Did you stop after the Mighty Foot level?

    I was surprised how much I liked DNF when I finally played it a while ago. It's game design reminded me of HL2, in fact. The mix of shooting, physics puzzles and driving sections is really similar.

    Instead of the interactive "cutscenes" in HL2, DNF instead has its gimmicky minigames. Anyway, I was really pleasantly surprised by it, and if nothing else, it is a fascinating window into game development hell.

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    1. This playthrough I stopped here, but I have finished the game. Voluntarily.

      I was surprised by how much I liked it too, and I think I have reviewers to thank for that. If they hadn't torn the game apart in the way they did, I wouldn't have gone in with rock bottom expectations, and the game wouldn't have surpassed them so often. That sounds like I'm damning it with faint praise, but I really did find the game fun (except for all those times when it wasn't).

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    2. I guess we share an experience then. A friend and I started playing it, prepared to laugh at it. I think about during the time where the Pigcops attack you in the container on the construction site, tipping it over, I exclaimed "What is everyone talking about - this game is awesome!"

      Maybe it's rooting for the underdog, or a fascination with game development, to be able to see a living relic come to live, but I genuinely, unironically liked Duke Nukem Forever :D

      By the way, the DLC is really good. I think it complements the main game really well, rounding off the rather aprupt ending with a complete other mini-campaign. Should you ever starve for more DNF, the DLC is well worth it. (Uh oh I hope I didn't oversell it now XD)

      -Kaffeebohnson

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  5. Have you checked this out? http://www.moddb.com/mods/duke-nukem-forever
    It's a mod for Duke 3D which recreates the Duke Forever from the 2001 trailer, with some things from the 1998 trailer and the official game.

    I don't think you would like it, as it's full of "remember when this trailer was awesome?" moments and you have a permanent antinostalgia filter on (personally, I think antinostalgia has become the same close-minded non-argument as nostalgia, where now everything old sucks and everything new is good), but your final comments on the official game are almost a mirror image of the mod. If this one is a remake of an old game that couldn't exist, the mod is a demake of that game. It has a feel that is sort of classic and modern at the same time; you waste no time running around and killing things but it's also got kind of a storyline to play out. Also, Duke is less of an outright asshole and more of an ass-kicking hero like he should be.

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    1. No, I've never seen that before. I'm not really hyped to play it though as I'd rather see the trailer levels recreated in the engines they were originally made for. I want a DNF project that runs on the Quake II engine up to the half way point, then switches to Unreal.

      I don't think I've got an antinostalgia filter on though. I mean I played Duke Nukem 3D for my site in 2011 and I loved it, then I played it again recently and I still loved it. Though that second episode's a bit ass. I guess Duke 3D's a bad example to prove my innocence though as its gameplay still holds up in the harsh light of the present day.

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    2. That's what I mean. Of course there were bad games before, as there have always been. But now everything even remotely old is actually bad and always was, you only thought it was good because you were a kid, and if you weren't a nostalgia-goggle-blinded fool you would realize how bad it truly is.

      It's 100% as ignorant and close-minded as regular nostalgia-goggle-blindness, and I'm sick of it.

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