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Bethesda Reviving Commander Keen As a Free To Play Mobile Game - E3 2019

This ain't a Keen Dream.


There were a few surprising new reveals at Bethesda's E3 conference this year. One of them was Tango Gameworks' Ghostwire Tokyo, another was Arkane Lyon's Deathloop. The third--which will spark the interest of anyone who grew up playing shareware games on PCs in the early 90's--was the revival of a classic platformer series Commander Keen.

Creative Director Kira Schlitt took the stage to announce the return of Commander Keen as a free-to-play mobile game for iOS and Android devices. Visually inspired by Saturday morning cartoons, it looks like you'll play as the children of the original Commander Keen, who is canonically the grandson of Wolfenstein protagonist BJ Blazkowicz, and the father of the guy from Doom (I'm not kidding. In fact, you can see photos of BJ and Wolfenstein: Youngblood protagonists Jess and Soph in the trailer).

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Now Playing: Commander Keen Full Presentation | Bethesda Press Conference E3 2019

The twin kids, named Billy and Billie, will use a variety of homemade gadgets and powers in what is described as a drag-and-drop 2D tactics game. There will be a single-player story mode, as well as real-time PvP combat.

The original Commander Keen was a series of four 2D platformers created by ID Software between 1990 and 1991. Classic enemies from the original series of games, including the Grand Intellect, Dopefish, and more, appeared in the trailer for the new game. Commander Keen will soft launch this summer.

There was a lot more news to come out of the Bethesda conference, so be sure to check out our liveblog recap, and stay tuned for the rest of our E3 coverage.

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