“Yeah, but after twelve f***ing years, it should be!”
Duke Nukem Forever is the ridiculously long-delayed sequel to Duke Nukem 3D, released in 1996. It was finally released last week by Gearbox Software and 2K Games for the Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, and Play Station 3 on June 14, 2011 in North America and a few days earlier world-wide. Duke Nukem is a fictional character and action hero who has been the protagonist in over a dozen video games, comic books, and an upcoming live-action feature film. The premise of Duke Nukem Forever is a continuation of the adventures of Duke Nukem who single-handed stopped a mid-1990s alien invasion of Earth.
Duke Nukem first appeared in the 1991 (PC-DOS) video game Duke Nukem developed by Apogee Software. The Duke has since starred in multiple sequels developed by 3D Realms, and currently by Gearbox Software who now have the rights to Duke Nukem and who own its intellectual property. Duke Nukem Forever has big shoes to fill as a cult following has grown up around Duke Nukem 3D. Fourteen years ago, reviewers mostly praised the game. It was also a commercial success selling about three and a half million copies and it is not without controversy due to the game’s erotic elements and its portrayal of women.
After fourteen years in development limbo with many announcements of its imminent release followed by delay after delay, the sequel was finally released and we are going to give you our impressions of Duke Nukem Forever as well as a performance evaluation featuring 3D Vision/Surround (1920-5760×1080 resolution) featuring the GTX 580 and the 560 TI as well as GTX 560 Ti SLI to run 3D Vision Surround.
Ever since Duke Nukem 3D, the tough guy character has been constantly and expertly voiced by voice actor Jon St. John. It is fortunate that the Duke remains pretty much the same egocentric macho over-the-top action character throughout the entire video game series, as the Duke does much the same violent things, retains the same attitude toward women and he delivers similar corny and heavy one-liners all throughout.
Of course Duke Nukem Forever has updated the visuals from the 1996 game to DX9c (not DX10 nor DX11 as it runs on the Unreal 3 engine) but it is still not quite on a par with the most graphically intensive DX9 PC games of 2011. Therefore it runs very well on a GTX 560 Ti and will also give excellent performance results for 1080p resolution 3D Vision. Besides updating the visuals, Gearbox created a single player sequel, as well as adding online multiplayer.
This review is only going to focus on the single player content and especially on playing with Nvidia’s 3D Vision (1920×1080) and in 3D Vision Surround (5760×1080). Playing a game in Stereo 3D (S3D) will definitely increase immersion of a good game but nothing can save a real pig of a game if it is a disaster in 2D. Before we look at the merits and flaws of Duke Nukem Forever, we need to look at Nvidia’s 3D Vision and the hardware we used to play it on.