DUKE NUKEM FOREVER
PC, PS3, Xbox 360 Out: May 6 First announced in 1997, Duke Nukem Forever has been widely regarded as the videogame equivalent of Guns N’ Roses’ infamous Chinese Democracy album: its development has been overly protracted, constantly stalled and is now the butt of every industry joke. But the Duke might have the last laugh.
Finally arriving this year, Nukem appears to be unapologetically old-school in design. Stubbornly shunning the bulk of gameplay advancements made by modern-day genre leaders such as Halo and Call of Duty, Nukem keeps both feet planted in the golden era of
centres on gunplay against aliens. first-person shooters in both looks and structure.
Though it probably won’t win awards for visuals or technology, Nukem could still be a winner when it comes to fun. The game will effectively be 14 years old by the time it’s released and its sense of humour is appropriately adolescent in tone.
Within the first hour, players will chug beer to enhance their combat toughness, doodle obscenities in the autograph book of an eager fan and give the one-finger salute to an alien mothership as it falls spectacularly from the sky.
While gunplay against swarms of alien nasties forms the basis of the Nukem experience, players will also be able to drive vehicles: at one point Duke shrinks down to pilot a remote-controlled car, zooming across a casino floor.
At a time when it seems fashionable to coat action heroes with complexity and plotlines with melodrama, Nukem’s one-dimensional approach and lowbrow laughs could seem fresh by comparison when he returns on May 6.
Golden era: Duke Nukem