Review by Shanks_McKinsey

Reviewed: 11/29/11

Duke Nukem Forever, Damn It's Good!

Duke Nukem Forever came out after 14 years. It was expected to be the greatest game ever and came out during the height of the FPS genre popularity with games like Battlefield 3, Modern Warfare 3, and Rage to be compared against it. So does Duke Nukem offer something these other FPS games don't? The answer to that question is yes. Duke Nukem Forever is innovative in such a way that it isn't just a FPS but also an adventure game. It lives up to it's predecessor's legacy and provides a new standard for other FPS games to live up to. What Duke Nukem Forever did was make a single player campaign that constantly has the player doing new things, going to new places, and meeting new characters. The lengthy campaign never gets old and there is always a new threat for the player to face. This game get's a lot of hate and has a lot of misconceptions surrounding it. I will start this review by breaking down how other reviewers are wrong and then I will do my own review. Below I will list some of the slander that has been said about this game. I believed a lot of the complaints about this game and was shocked at how wrong most reviews were.Most of the complaints about Duke Nukem Forever were out right lies. I was foolish to ever believe Duke Nukem had failed despite years of quality products being delivered from the franchise.

Duke Nukem Forever is terrible because it tries to mix modern FPS features with old school traits

If you honestly think Duke Nukem Forever is an old school game than you haven't played the game. Duke Nukem Forever is new age in every way and just because you can't lie down in it or have super precise weapons like in Call of Duty doesn't mean the game is old school. The games shooting mechanics aren't as advance as Call of Duty but the game isn't about the shooting entirely. The shooting is just one aspect of a game with many traits. Duke Nukem Forever doesn't need to have the player lay down or look down a scope on each weapon because the monsters aren't that far away it's more of an up close and personal shooter. Duke Nukem Forever constantly get's hate for it's game play mechanics when it isn't meant to be Call of Duty, Duke Nukem is suppose to be like Condemned or Bioshock. Shooting is just one aspect of these games, the main focus is the atmosphere and environments your character explores. Games like Condemned, Bioshock, and Halo are loved yet Duke Nukem is hated when the games mechanics are on par with those series.

Duke Nukem Forever doesn't let you carry more than two weapons and the regenerating health isn't meant for this type of game

This complaint basically is saying that FPS games were better before these two mechanics were put into play. However, neither of these mechanics hurt the Duke experience at all. Holding multiple weapons would be nice on PC but for Xbox you would have to keep plowing through menus of weapons every time you want to switch to the weapon you want. Most the time half the weapons your holding are worthless. Duke Nukem Forever you never feel like you can't get access to a weapon you want and usually the best weapon for the current enemy is always provided. One complaint I heard is," you always have to carry an RPG because you never know when a boss will come up." This is ridiculous because an RPG is always provided to you when a boss does appear and there are usually check points right before the bosses so you could just reload your game if you walked into a boss fight without an RPG. As for the ego regenerating health aspect of this game, regenerating health works great. Regen health replaced health packs because it's just better than having to keep running around looking for health packs and having to worry about how many packs you have on hand. Go play Duke Nukem 3D or Max Payne and come back and tell me their system of health packs are better than regenerating health. I remember people complaining because Fear, Condemned, and Bioshock used health packs and now suddenly people love them.

Duke Nukem Forever isn't quite up to this gens FPS games

This is a ridiculous statement and implies that Duke Nukem Forever belongs in last gen. Go play Killzone or the first Halo and tell me Duke Nukem Forever doesn't have better mechanics. Don't get me wrong I love Killzone and Halo but they feel so much stiffer, slower, and unorganized when compared to Duke Nukem Forever. Duke Nukem Forever is far more cinematic and varied than any FPS this gen. Halo Reach, Call of Duty, and Battlefield all suffer from the same single player problem of having you run around and killing piles of the same enemy over and over with little vehicle sections in between. Duke Nukem Forever has a constant stream of cinematic moments, vehicle sections, puzzles, platforming and free roaming sections to break up the fighting. Your constantly going some place else or doing something different. Even game like Bioshock pale in comparison to the amount of variety and immersion in Duke Nukem Forever. I don't want to spoil any of the really great moments in Duke Nukem Forever but things like enemies breaking through a roof and attacking you or you being thrown across a level are not uncommon and are always done nicely.

The vehicle, puzzle, and platforming sections in Duke Nukem Forever suck and are glitchy

I have no clue where this idea that the platforming sections and vehicle sections of Duke Nukem Forever are glitchy and unplayable. The platforming is pretty standard and it never get's hard and frustrating. The platforming sections where you're shrunk are especially good. The puzzle sections in Duke Nukem Forever are clever and a nice change of pace from the regular game. As for the vehicle sections none of them are anything great but they are pretty standard and fun. I don't get why the vehicles are hated in Duke Nukem when they drive better than the cars in Alan Wake, the Warthog in Halo, the jet ski in Uncharted, the list goes on... The puzzles and the platforming were in Duke 3D so I don't understand why now they are getting so much hate and the vehicle sections aren't the least bit annoying at all. All of these features are a nice and welcomed change in pacing.

Duke Nukem Forever has bad graphics, they look like they are for last gen

Yeah some of the textures are bad and yes there is way too much texture popping in the game. None of this really hinders the actual game play though and the character models and most the levels look awesome. Some of the levels are worst than other levels in terms of graphics but most the game is looks great. The vents in the beginning of the game looked amazing and the raining effects in the game look great. I also know the PC version has less texture popping problems and better resolution. I mean Duke Nukem had a long development cycle so yeah some parts of the game look rough but over all it has average graphics with some amazing looking moments. The graphics in Duke Nukem Forever are no where near last gen graphics, people need to go play Call of Duty 1, Halo 1, or Killzone 1 if they think this.

Duke Nukem Forever isn't worth 60 bucks

Well considering Duke Nukem is one of the most original and fun single player games I ever played and it has a multiplayer mode with a cool rewards feature. So, I'd say yes it is worth the full sixty dollars. No one had a problem paying sixty dollars for Uncharted Drake's Fortune yet it had no multiplayer, horrible vehicle sections, and repetitive combat. Yet, Duke Nukem Forever is even more varied and offers a campaign probably twice as long and Duke isn't worth sixty bucks? I love Uncharted don't get me wrong but Duke Nukem was a better value than that game and it's a better value than most games on the market. If Duke Nukem Forever had some coop it would have been easily been worth sixty but right now the single player content makes Duke Nukem Forever worthy of being a full price game.

Duke Nukem Forever is unplayable it's so glitchy

This complaint I don't get at all. I mean yeah once in awhile a character will get stuck in a corner or and enemy will get stuck behind a pole but then again if I play another game the same thing will happen. I can't really say much about this complaint because it's just wrong the game is extremely playable. I found more glitches in Gear of War 2,Modern Warfare 2, and Killzone 2 than in Duke Nukem Forever.

I'm sure there are other complaints about this game I'm forgetting, but really it's all just lies and people over exaggerating. I mean Duke Nukem Forever has some flaws like an average multiplayer mode and lack of coop. Both of which should have been in the game and are far better in Duke Nukem 3D. I still gave Duke Nukem Forever a ten because it deserves it. The single player in Duke Nukem is so good and addicting it makes up for the lack of other features. Bioshock didn't have multiplayer yet it was given a 10/10 by many for being highly innovative and different. Duke Nukem Forever is far more varied and innovative than Bioshock yet it get's bashed. The fact Duke Nukem has any multiplayer is just the icing on top of a delicious cake.

I have talked a lot about the game and have explained what's good about it and what is meh, but now let me review it in full. Duke Nukem Forever is a great game with a lack luster multiplayer but an amazing campaign to make up for it. The naughty humor is a hit or a miss but anyone is guaranteed to have a chuckle at some point. The sound is great, the graphics are solid, and the game play of the game is so varied you will continue to be entertained even if you don't like a part of it. The high light of the game is some of the great free roaming sections where you can interact with all sorts of characters and items. The mini games in these sections are fun and entertaining. The games immersion and optional content to the player within the story is a great addition to an already great game. Duke Nukem Forever's cinematic moments are surprisingly great for a game that has been in production for so long. The cinematic moments of the game hold up against any other game out there. Perhaps what sets the Duke Nukem series apart from most other are the great boss battles. This is no different in Forever. Duke fights larger than life monster that are reminiscent of games like Quake and compare to modern FPS boss battles like in Resistance. Duke Nukem offers a varied FPS experience as oppose to the enter one room kill enemies go to the next room. The game is almost an adventure game of sorts with it's zany atmosphere and crazy characters as some of the most memorable in gaming history. Duke Nukem Forever me was in no way a let down and kept up the Duke 3D legacy. I look forward to what's to come next in the Duke universe and I'm ashamed at how much hate this game get's when it tried to do something different and succeeded. It's obvious a lot of work went into this game and none of it was appreciated. For me this is game of the year and I haven't been this addicted and entertained with a video game in awhile.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Product Release: Duke Nukem Forever (US, 06/14/11)

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