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Lost Duke Nukem Game Is Playable Online

Lost Duke Nukem Game Is Playable Online
Gearbox Software | 3D Realms

Written by 

Joseph Kime

Posted 

9th May 2022 09:56

It's hard to reflect on Duke Nukem Forever without being forced to wince. To be honest, it's not a pleasant memory. After being trapped in the truest form of development hell for over a decade, Duke Nukem finally made his return with his first game in many years, and it was a complete horror show.

Ugly environments, weak gunplay, the chance to fish turds out of toilets (for some reason) means it was a total mess - and by no means what the development team wanted of its final product after so many years.

Duke Nukem was declared dead at the scene, so it's no surprise we haven't heard anything since. Maybe that's for the best, but now, the game that Duke Nukem Forever was supposed to be has leaked online. In a bleak turn, it's vastly better than the game we actually got.

What Is The Original Build For Duke Nukem Forever?

The original version of Duke Nukem Forever, which was in development in 2001 and ultimately scrapped in favour of developing the game that came later in 2011, has been leaked online. More than just some concept art or blocky assets, it's actually a huge bulk of the game.

The version of the game is completely playable in Unreal Engine 1 and was first revealed on a now-archived 4chan. Although we always tread with caution on anything that appears on 4chan, the thread revealed a playable link and seems to be the real deal.

The game is pretty much what you'd expect, but in the best way giving us the Duke Nukem we longed for all those years ago. The 2001 Duke Nukem Forever build is extra special considering the huge disappointment of the final game. After we haven't seen Duke in a while, it's certainly refreshing.

What Happened To Duke Nukem Forever?

Photos of final development for Duke Nukem Forever (the version we see in this new leak) were released in 2001, but after huge internal lay-offs, delayed progress, and a lawsuit from Take-Two Interactive for failure to turn out a game, it was passed to Gearbox Software. 

The Borderlands team eventually re-announced Duke Nukem Forever for a release date of 2011. It came out, disgusted and horrified players with its horrible gameplay and offensive narrative threads, and the rest is history.

Duke Nukem Forever will be a historical game for - well - forever, but not for the right reasons. Tragically, this new leak shows us what could have been. It's a shame that the game is what it became, and Duke has been laid to rest indefinitely. The debaucherous father of boomer shooters is no more.

 

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