YOU COULD BE FORGIVEN for your skepticism at reading that headline. After all, the rug has been pulled out from under gamers time and time again over the 13 years since Duke Nukem Forever was fi rst announced. The game was even offi cially scrapped back in May last year after funding ran dry (while some $US20 million had reportedly been spent on its development already). But in a surprise showing at the Penny Arcade Expo in Seattle in early September, 2K Games studio Gearbox Games announced it has picked up the property. The studio even had a playable demo for the fi rst time at PAX – the strongest signal yet that the game will actually see the light of day! Gearbox has pegged Duke Nukem Forever for release at an unspecifi ed date next year.
First announced in 1997, the path to Duke Nukem Forever’s release has been so protracted that the game has become something of a gaming community in-joke. It’s somewhat synonymous with the term ‘vapourware’: software that has been announced, but where an actual release is in doubt. Now, more than ever, Duke Nukem Forever can be likened to the gaming equivalent of the Guns ‘n’ Roses album Chinese Democracy: a record that eventually released in the face of much doubt after a similarly protracted period.
"All great things take time... a lot of time,” laughs Christoph Hartmann, president of 2K. "After a hiatus from the video game world, Duke Nukem is back and better than ever. The return of the King from the glory days of shooters will satisfy our patient, die-hard fans, as well as a new generation of bubble gum-chewing, fl at top and shades-wearing bad-asses. Make no mistake about it - Duke Nukem Forever is a testament to the era of when shooters were bodacious and fun.”
Duke Nukem Forever is a sequel to the classic PC fi rst-person shooter Duke Nukem 3D from 1996, which has become something of a cult classic thanks to its destructible environments and trademark humour