Today, Duke Nukem Forever has something few gamers ever thought it would receive--a hard release date. Developer Gearbox Software and publisher 2K Games announced this morning that the long-in-the-works shooter will ship simultaneously for the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on May 3 in North America and May 6 worldwide. Though the game does not have a rating, its violent and bawdy content almost guarantees an M for Mature sticker from the ESRB.
Gearbox has also promised a pre-release demo for the long-in-the-making title, with purchasers of the Game of the Year edition of Borderlands getting first whack at it via the Duke Nukem Forever First Access Club. A demo was previously shown off at PAX Prime 2010, when GameSpot got some hands-on time with it.
Initially announced in 1997, Duke Nukem Forever was synonymous with vaporware for over a decade. While at original studio 3D Realms, it went through at least two engine changes, with its protracted development reportedly costing over $20 million to $30 million.
Then in early 2009, publisher 2K Games' parent company Take-Two lost patience with 3D Realms, refusing to give it the funds to continue development of the game. It went on to sue the suburban Texas developer, with court documents revealing the New York-based publisher was developing another Duke Nukem game, Duke Begins, with Gearbox. That developer, flush with cash from the success of Borderlands, went on to buy all Duke Nukem Forever assets and the Duke Nukem IP itself last September.
For more on Duke Nukem Forever, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.