I know a lot of people hated this reboot or upgrade or remake. Whatever you want to call it. I’m not sure why either. There was very little wrong with it from a technical standpoint and if you ask me it was a nice update to the original games. As someone who’s been a fan of Duke since the 90’s (as it was the first FPS I ever played) I loved this new game.
Recently the Duke Nukem 20th anniversary edition came out for PS4 (and other systems). I wanted it on PS4 because I thought it would be neat to have on console. Playing it again I realized how much Duke Nukem Forever really WAS like the other games. Same weapons, same aliens…even similar levels to what you’ll find in Duke Nukem 3D. I’m not sure what people expected. This is a Duke game. It’s not supposed to suddenly be serious or super dramatic. It was exactly what I expected going into a reboot when I pre-ordered it so long ago. Seems like a long time now.
You are Duke Nukem once again and it starts with you being rich and having your own tower/casino in Las Vegas. You have to do stupid little start up missions. By stupid, I mean
fun. I actually enjoyed it. You walk down to a TV studio to do an interview, talk to some people, sign an autograph for a kid…it’s funny and it’s fun. This, of course, happens after an opening scene where you find out you are really just Duke playing a Duke video game and getting a blow job by the “Holsom Twins”.
The world starts getting attacked by aliens at that point so you can’t do the interview. You then have to go out and fight aliens with a bunch of really inept idiot SWAT members and military personnel. The jokes are crude, along with other scenes and imagery. Your health points are your “ego” which you can increase by doing certain things along the way (looking in the mirror, lifting weights, things like that). The aliens are sexual in some aspects like the giant Queen Bitch with three tits. On one mission you run into chicks who are trapped by the alien tendrils and impregnated. Including the “Holsom Twins”.
You travel through your own casino fighting updated monsters that were the same as in the original game just far better designed and defined. Seriously. It’s the same game except for it’s updated from the pixels that it used to be, to a game suitable for the PS3. The game is fun and kept me entertained through a few play-throughs. It’s not perfect but it’s also not meant to be some overly theatrical and serious game. It really is reminiscent of the old games. With how nonsensical and oddly thrown together they were.
One of the best parts, for me, was the strip club level. Though it never reaches more than PG-13 humor at parts I found it humorous. The mission is to collect various items and bring them to the VIP room for a “private show”. The items being a vibrator, popcorn, and a condom. You have to go through the motions of microwaving the popcorn and all of that. Which as mundane as it sounds is also funny in the way that this is supposed to be an action/FPS game and suddenly this is what you are doing? There is also a game room where you can increase your EGO points by beating a few of the games and playing against an NPC at an air hockey table. Shortly after that you realize it was just a dream, you wake up, and you find yourself shrunk to tiny Duke size in order to climb through a fast food kitchen in order to save a girl who is trapped.
This game is entertaining and definitely kept me captivated. Is it the best game of all time? No. It’s also not the worst game of all time like you’ll read in many, many reviews. I suppose from the collection of reviews people who hated it wanted it to be straight up pornography and way more graphic violence or something. The original Duke wasn’t even that graphic and really had very little to offer in way of “realistic nudity” to begin with. If you liked “classic duke” then you’ll like this game, or at least I would assume that to be the case. I guess I’m one of the few people who actually liked it instead of deciding that it should somewhat be WAY FUCKING BETTER after 12 years of waiting for a reboot. Maybe they’ll do another one that will please the overly picky nerd boys who hated this one but I’m okay with how it stands now. I’m also VERY okay with the 20th Anniversary edition which I highly recommend to anyone familiar with Duke Nukem 3D from the 90’s.