3D Realms denies Duke Nukem Forever using Doom 3 engine

[UPDATE] Misstatement by Take-Two CEO Rich Roedel to the press sets off a firestorm of speculation.

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Besides revealing a cornucopia of Grand Theft Auto details, yesterday's Take-Two Interactive call also mentioned 3D Realms' legendarily delayed shooter, Duke Nukem Forever. In the question-and-answer session that followed the company's earnings call, Take-Two CEO Rich Roedel fielded a question from UBS analyst Mike Wallace. The exchange went like this:

Wallace: "And then just one more [question] for fiscal '05. Is Duke Nukem [Forever] in the plan?"

Roedel: "No, it is not in any of the guidance that we've given."

Wallace: "OK. And should we just completely forget about this product by now or...?"

Roedel: "Absolutely not, although it has been frustrating in terms of committing to a ship date. But the 3D Realms guys continue to work. They are using the Doom 3 technology, which is finished. They are a premier developer, but they certainly believe in no line before it's time. So they want to deliver a great game, and we are anxiously waiting for updates from them."

If true, the Doom 3 engine would have been at least the third engine used by Duke Nukem Forever. When the game was first announced in 1997, it was to use the Quake II graphics engine, also from id Software. Then, in 1998, the Texas-based developer announced that the game would use Epic's Unreal engine instead.

[UPDATE] However, it now appears Roedel's official statement to the press was in error. An item on Shacknews today from 3D Realms' George Broussard flatly denies the Doom 3 engine will be used. "We are not using the Doom 3 engine for Duke Nukem Forever," he said. However, Broussard and other 3D Realms employees declined GameSpot's repeated requests to comment on why the head of Duke Nukem Forever's publisher would make such a public mistake.

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