This Is What It Takes To Play Duke Nukem Forever On PC (And What It Might've Taken 14 Years Ago)

Gearbox Software, the developer controlling the reins of Duke Nukem Forever, revealed the official minimum specs required to play the game on a PC today. That's an important milestone that lets us know Duke Nukem Forever is one step closer to actual release and it helps us answer the question "Can my PC handle that much Duke?"

The minimum and recommended hardware specs probably aren't too surprising. It's a game less demanding than, say, Crysis 2 in its minimum requirements, on par with many of its modern-day shooter peers. But here they are, should you finally be considering a PC upgrade now that Duke Nukem Forever is here. (Or is scheduled to be on June 14.)

Duke Nukem Forever

Minimum Specifications

  • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo @ 2.0 Ghz / AMD Athlon 64 X2 @ 2.0 Ghz
  • Memory: 1 GB
  • Hard Drive: 10 GB free
  • Video Memory: 256 MB
  • Video Card: nVidia GeForce 7600 / ATI Radeon HD 2600
  • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible

Recommended Specifications

  • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo @ 2.4 Ghz / AMD Athlon 64 X2 @ 2.6 Ghz
  • Memory: 2 GB
  • Hard Drive: 10 GB free
  • Video Memory: 512 MB
  • Video Card: nVidia GeForce 8800 GTS / ATI Radeon HD 3850
  • Sound Card: DirectX Compatible

Now, I don't know if you've heard, but Duke Nukem Forever has been in development for some time. About 14 years, give or take, and through multiple video game engine life cycles. It was, at one point, being built on id Software's Quake II engine. Later, it was being built on Epic Games' original Unreal engine.

So, I thought it might be interesting to see what a difference 14 years makes in terms of system requirements. So here are the minimum and recommended specs for Quake II and Unreal, based on id Software's web site and the back of this Unreal jewel case I have sitting on my desk for some reason.

Quake II

System Requirements

  • A 100% Windows 95/98/ME/NT 4.0/2000-compatible computer system (including compatible 32-bit drivers for CD-ROM drive , video card, sound card and input devices)
  • Pentium® 90 MHz processor (133 recommended) or higher or Athlon® processor
  • 16MB RAM required for Windows 95/98, 24MB required for all other supported operating systems
  • Quad-speed CD-ROM drive (600 K/sec. sustained transfer rate)
  • 100% Microsoft®-compatible mouse and driver
  • 25MB of uncompressed hard disk space for game files (Minimum Install), plus 45MB for the Windows swap file
  • Supports network and Internet play via IPX and TCP/IP

Unreal

System Requirements

  • CPU: P166 MHz or better (200MMX recommended)
  • MEMORY: 16MB RAM (32MB recommended)
  • AVAILABLE HD SPACE: 100MB min. (450 recommended)
  • DISTRIBUTION MEDIA DRIVE: CD-ROM
  • AUDIO SYSTEM: Windows 95 Compatible Sound Card
  • VIDEO SYSTEM: PCI Local Bus Video Card
  • O/S: Windows 95/Windows 98/Windows NT
  • NETWORK AND INTERNET PLAY: via TCP/IP