Duke Nukem Forever revived by Gearbox?

Unconfirmed reports peg Borderlands maker as taking over 3D Realms' long-delayed and thought-dead shooter.

Source: Gaming blog Kotaku.

What we heard: The Duke Nukem Forever saga may not yet be over. Over a year ago, 3D Realms laid off virtually its entire staff after spending $20 million over nearly 13 years to develop the sci-fi shooter. Then, as is often the case with publisher-developer disputes, the game became the subject of a tit-for-tat set of lawsuits between 3D Realms and Take-Two Interactive, which had planned to publish the sci-fi shooter under its 2K Games label.

Gearbox may be taking a double-take on Duke Nukem Forever.

Now, the presumed-dead title has resurfaced. According to Kotaku's sources, Borderlands developer Gearbox Software--which, like 3DRealms, is located in suburban Dallas--has taken over the reins of the project, which was first announced in 1997. Because 2K Games still retains the publishing rights for the title, it could presumably go ahead with shifting development of the game to Gearbox--if 3D Realms didn't claim it owned the Duke Nukem intellectual property in its lawsuit.

And this is where the plot thickens. According to 3D Realms' lawsuit, Take-Two had commissioned Gearbox to prep another Duke Nukem-branded game, Duke Begins, for a 2010 release, but shut it down to stop royalty payments to 3D Realms. Court documents filed by Take-Two in July 2009 claim work on Duke Begins was shelved "for the time being," but the publisher disputed 3D Realms' claims that it was done for financially punitive reasons.

The official story: Gearbox reps had not responded to requests for comment, but Take-Two offered the following statement: "While it is the company's policy not to comment on rumors or speculation, we can confirm that Take-Two maintains the publishing rights for Duke Nukem Forever."

Bogus or not bogus?: Too little to go on. One possibility is that the Duke Begins project may be revived and simply retitled Duke Nukem Forever because it had been scheduled for a 2010 release already. A rumored Penny Arcade Expo panel by Gearbox may shed some more light on the matter.

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Discussion

326 comments
Micropanic
Micropanic

Thank fook 3D Realms is gone though, Duke Nukem may actually have a chance of being released now.

Daemon_X_
Daemon_X_

I don't know why, but I still hope for this damn game to come out!

Kirintar
Kirintar

If only it was given to some competent studio from the beginning, Epic could have farted out a better version in a year or two.

score89
score89

duke nukem forever gota be like the holy grail of videogames, already a legend without even been made

digi-demon
digi-demon

Seriously, nowadays, who in their right mind would buy anything released with the 'Duke Nukem' logo on it. Come on, considering how old and stale this IP is, have any modern day gamers even heard of the original?

MdN09graduate
MdN09graduate

The guys at Epic Games should've done the project

Theman3006
Theman3006

See I new it would get made. i never stopped beleving in Duke Nukem

otanikun
otanikun

Well it's about damn time, at least these guys will be able to do something with ol Duke here, I'm looking forward to that demo.

Dgalmun
Dgalmun

Duke nukem is forever gone.

Barighm
Barighm

I still don't believe Gearbox would be willing to take resources away from Borderworlds development for a game that is more fun to speculate about then play. Seriously, if the game ever did come out, I can see the review headlines now: "A mediocre shooter that was more fun to joke about these last few years than actually play".

LtReviews
LtReviews

Am I the only Brothers in Arms fan waiting for the next game in the series? They leave us with a cliffhanger ending that all but promises a sequel, then they go off from doing historically accurate tactical shooters to run and gun sci-fic fps...

nomejko
nomejko

Just lay this game to rest it's been announced before I was in high school R.I.P. Duke you'll always be the king of gaming George Broussard u *bleep* up big time

rpgnutt
rpgnutt

im not a huge fan of this idea but at the same time whos to say gearbox couldnt make a great or even good duke nukem game all the hype around boderlands and in my opinion it wasnt that good of a game but anything could happen

rpgnutt
rpgnutt

i have to agree with salairan chemist when im watchin game shows like e3 or comi con or what ever when showin a game thats going to be on both consoles most of the time the devs will play the demo on the 360

andalore
andalore

I'll see you beck here in another 10 years and this game still won't be released.

gregorypierce
gregorypierce

Whomever is the producer on this latest incarnation is nuts. This game should have been allowed to die and be forgotten. It should not have been given a new mechanism through which to consume funds.

gbrading
gbrading moderator

Duke Nukem Forever is the gaming equivalent of Rasputin: No matter how often you try to kill him, he's going to keep swimming.

Mariner32
Mariner32

The only problem is that if it even ever comes out at this point there is no way it will ever be able to live up to the hype...

SlowMotionKarma
SlowMotionKarma

/facepalm While I was never really a huge fan of the Duke games, I have to admit they were fun to play and I was hopeful when they FIRST ANNOUNCED Forever. Now? Just let it die. Spend your time and money on something else. Who knows how much has been wasted on this chunk of vaporware. Let's all end it now and move forward.

cannibal87
cannibal87

I just hope they dont turn it to crap coz i loved the duke nukem games

s_h_a_d_o
s_h_a_d_o

Duke Nukem: Forever Rumoured

Lucianu
Lucianu

@Blaze_Hrimfaxi I know. :P I'm not waiting for this game, i don't care. What i am saying, is that we have to be realistic and think this trough. We know that if a game is fun, entertaining, its going to be played, right?(ofc. it depends on the person, the term "fun" is subjective). Point is, if this game ever gets released, its going to be big, hands down, thinking this logically, it is going to be big IF it's a entertaining game, because of its popularity as a vaporware. That's all. Either way, just ride the wave, there are many games out there, it doesn't really matter. Buy it if it comes out, don't care, to each he's own.

don_dalati777
don_dalati777

We meet again old friend... Come Get Some!!!!

SirMordredX
SirMordredX

Well if gearbox are taking control, then we've got nothing to worry about - they've shown naught but competence on most all of their releases up until now... @Silent_Raven92 madness...THIS.IS. No, just kidding.

Silent_Raven92
Silent_Raven92

Duke Nukem forever might.. finally... get released....? MADNESS.

remysola
remysola

Altough I was a big fan of Duke,,, this franchise is dead.

MOwens9512
MOwens9512

LOL This has to be one of the funniest and saddest stories in game history. I'm not an FPS fan but I definitely love the Duke Nukem character. In 13 years of childish squabbling Take Two and 3D Realms has turned one of the most anticipated games (when it was announced) into a complete disaster. I wonder if this game will ever get published at this point. In fact, perhaps there should be a pool started to see if this game will be published before those of us who played the first Duke Nukem when it originally came out send a child to college, retire from working, or die LOL. All 3 are likely to happen at this point.

Blaze_Hrimfaxi
Blaze_Hrimfaxi

@Lucianu You seem to forget that DNF was announced WAYYYYY back in 1997. Its been in limbo ever since.

The-Longshot
The-Longshot

i just don't care anymore, although ill probably play it if it ever does come out... it will be a nice surprise to see it sitting on a shelf somewhere someday.

Velvundrgnd
Velvundrgnd

There was once an orphan who was told that he would soon get adopted, but he never left the orphanage. I think Duke feels a little like that orphan right now.

Jacknoll
Jacknoll

@highlife: Or rather 10+ years waiting for someone to develop it.

highlife
highlife

I'll believe it when i see it. Would be nice to see this game come out after 10+ years in development.

gideonkain
gideonkain

Give it spit shine and RELEASE IT ALL! - this game has been built from the ground up, what? 3x on as many engines. Package the 1999 version, the 2004 version and the 2009 version and I'll give you $30 - so will 50% of everyone who bought Duke 3D - that way we can get some capital started for Duke Nukem 2025...hehe, jk - I just want to kick some ass and chew bubble gum...

DarkReign2552
DarkReign2552

For the sake of the fans (especially those of us who still have it pre-ordered) it definitely needs to make some kind of emergence eventually. to give the DNF reigns to the masterminds behind Borderlands almost seems like a dream come true to be honest. Between Borderlands, Brothers In Arms, and the work they did to port Halo:CE to the PC, they definitely seem to know what works and what doesn't in the genre. (and the humor and satire in Borderlands just goes to show that GB would be able to handle the satirical Duke Nukem series well enough. (Speaking of which, where are our XBLA and PSN ports of Duke Nukem 1 and 2? We have 3D and Manhattan Project, but what about the games that started it all?)

Franknight
Franknight

I give duke nukem forever an ultimatum, you have until 2012 to come out, if you don't there won't be anyone to play you by then! lol

RonTorque
RonTorque

That's enough talking about this title and companies struggling to take it either you bring it or cancel it for good, Period.

byrt
byrt

Gearbox making DNF? It's like christmas!

ebookerd1
ebookerd1

Thank you Gear Box for making thinks epic!!

wwlettsome
wwlettsome

Obviously 3D Realms thought they were Blizzard. Unfortunately they were wrong. "Please note that we have added a consequence for failure. Any contact with the chamber floor will result in an 'unsatisfactory' mark on your official testing record, followed by death. Good luck!"

AnelZukic
AnelZukic

why saying gamespot is biased to X360? it's always that way, if it's going good for X360 and GS mentioned it, they are biased to X360 and Microsoft, when GS gives two years in a row the GOTY award to a PS3 exclusive, they are biased to PS3 and Sony :? I really don't understand you guys, GS just do they job, and very fair btw :)

AnelZukic
AnelZukic

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Circlestrafe
Circlestrafe

Have some respect, let him rest in peace! It's as if he's Elvis, Duke's been dead for 13 years, yet people keep claiming they've seen him alive! He's gone, we have to accept it and get on with our lives, no matter how impossible that may seem!

m30w_cP
m30w_cP

the part about 3drealms owning duke nukem IP is true, which I would imagine means, that if 3d realms doesnt want gearbox making a duke nukem game....then obviously they wont be able to w/o the copyright holder's permission. Right now its all up to 3d realms

maliksarmed
maliksarmed

its good to see duke come back .just hope he does come back.. 13 years is long time .starcraft 2 took 12 years..

TWayne1020
TWayne1020

After 13 years of reading about this game coming out, hope it's true this time !!!

Deathropracter
Deathropracter

Bring out the duke. I go were I please and I please were I go haha

2x4b96123
2x4b96123

comparisons between this and Starcraft 2 are irrelevant. Starcraft 2 wasn't even announced until a couple of years ago and had only been in development since 2005 THIS has been in development since 1997, It's hardly anything epic they are trying to sell, it's just a FPS sequel to DN3D. They aren't making a detail-packed sandbox or a living-breathing world, they aren't pushing technical or creative boundaries. 3d Realms has simply just been changing it's mind over and over through development and as a result the game has just never been finished. They took 10 years to make Prey and though it was interesting in concept by the time it was actually released it was nothing special. I love duke nukem, if this is ever released i'll probably buy it, but from what has put out by 3d Realms in the last decade, I think they have grown stale as a developer. Here's hoping the DN forever content has been handed over to Gearbox and we actually get to play something.

Jarek_Cyphus
Jarek_Cyphus

As traditionally the case with Kotaku.com, anything it puts out is always "too little to go on;" more often deliberately false. Kotaku.com=Gaming's Rumor mill.