Skip to main content

The Brilliance Of Duke Nukem Forever

More and more, it seems the entries here are something I wrote elsewhere that I realized would probably make a decent blog entry.  Here, another Broken Toys comment, where I refute professional reviewers talking about a game I never played the full version of, though at least I played the demo.  Hey, not the best of platforms, I know that, but let me see if this point I'm making holds solid nonetheless.



Personally, I thought the Duke Nukem Forever demo was a brilliant game in that it was a mediocre FPS but excellent lampoon of a FPS. As a FPS, it had an unsatisfying balanced experience, it didn't feel as tight as it should, and the two-weapon limitation felt like it had been neutered by excessive consolitus. However, as a lampoon of a FPS, it was a self-referential humor experience that, while you've played much better, is nonetheless definitely worth at least one play-through simply to see Duke Nukem being a ridiculously overblown Duke Nukem. 


If you pay attention to the game, you'll notice that Gearbox did not spare any effort to achieve that exact aim, just about every single thing they added to it was basically an in-joke that went like this: Duke Nukem lives in a fantasy world that exists wholly to support his colossal ego.  These reviewers disappoint me in that they seem to have missed the joke, many of them idolized Duke Nukem and wanted to see him treated with respect and reverence, delivering a hardcore experience worthy of 15 years of development. But, sorry to say it, they're wearing the nostalgia glasses, Duke Nukem is just a 90s pop icon who deserved nothing less than a misogynistic, egotistical tongue-in-cheek focus.

If the game had ended to see Duke Nukem trussed up in the corner of an asylum padded room while doctors talk to each other about him being a victim of pronounced delusions of grandeur and the whole game taking place inside of his addled mind, it would have been perfection.  It would have ground the point home that this is exactly what you're looking at.  But it doesn't: Duke Nukem has potential sequels to make, after all.  Instead we're to understand that Duke Nukem's delusions are real within his world.  That works, it's a punchline of a different color, albeit one not quite as solid.

So, why am I judging it on the demo, then? Why don't I go out and buy the game, right now, and see just how bad it really is?  Because I know that, in this day and age, with many great game choices available, some of them free to play, paying $50 for a game which is mostly hype and then being delivered a running joke feels like they're charging an idiot tax and you fell for it.  However, $20, the price they probably should have been charging initially, and perhaps removing any annoying fluff content that would have been injected to make it seem like it should be worth more, probably would have you laughing along with them.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Empyrion Vrs Space Engineers: A Different Kind Of Space Race

In my quest for more compelling virtual worlds, I have been watching Empyrion: Galactic Survival a lot this bizarro weekend, mostly via the Angry Joe Show twitch stream.  What I have concluded from my observations is Empyrion is following in Space Engineers' shadow, but it is nevertheless threatening the elder game due to a greater feature set (the modding scene notwithstanding).

Empyrion is made in Unity, whereas Space Engineers is built on a custom engine.  While this does put Empyrion at a disadvantage when it comes to conceptual flexibility, its developers nevertheless have a substantial advantage when it comes to adding features due to a savings of time spent that would have gone into developing their own engine.  Examples include:
Planets.  Empyrion already has planets and space to explore between them, whereas in Space Engineers planets are in the works but still awhile away (so you just have asteroid fields to scavenge).Enemies.  Space Engineers' survival mode boasts onl…

Resonant Induction Really Grinds My Gears... In A Good Way

From about 2pm yesterday until 8pm today, I've been dabbling with my latest custom mod mix for Minecraft 1.6.4, which is this time very much Universal Electricity focused.
Aside from the usual GUI enhancers and Somnia, the primary contenders in this mix were:
Calclavia Core - Of course: this is the base of the Universal Electricity system.Resonant Induction - This seems to be largely focused on increasingly more advanced methods of refining ores divided across 4 ages of technological progression.  It also includes some really cool things such as assembly lines.  I'll primarily be talking about just a few blocks out of this mod today.Atomic Science - A mod dedicated to generating more of those lovely universal electricity volts via the power of splitting the atom.  Build your own nuclear reactor!  Deal with nuclear meltdowns!  You maniac!ICBM - A mod dedicated to generating more destruction using those lovely universal electricity volts (and more than a little gunpowder), it cer…

Sometimes, The Cat Skins You

The formula for cat girls is simple enough: young girls are cute, cats are cute, so young girls who are also cats are cute times two, right?  ... Cat Planet Cuties (a.k.a Asobi ni Iku yo) does not stop there, it includes girls with guns, nudifying weaponry, and even failed romantic comedy that shows lots of skin.  Cat's out of the bag: Cat Planet Cuties is basically straight up wish fulfillment.

The overall plot is pretty simple.  The Catians are a race so advanced that they have not changed in over 70,000 years.  They discover Earth, a planet whose people have uncanny resemblances, right down to speaking the same language!  Desiring an escape from their cultural stagnation, they rename their own planet from Earth to Catia and dispatch a scout to assess the viability of first contact with this new Earth inhabited by humans.  High jinks ensue.

Other than an excuse to see some fun sci-fi devices, the plot sucks. Let me count the ways:
Kio Kakazu - The male center of our harem, a 1…