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Gearbox Software Now Owns Duke Nukem's Future

Illustration for article titled Gearbox Software Now Owns Duke Nukems Future

Following the confirmation on Friday that Gearbox is reviving Duke Nukem Forever, the studio now says it owns Duke. Gearbox obtained the rights to "Duke Nukem and all future projects" from former franchise owner 3D Realms.

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Gearbox president Randy Pitchford told a crowd the news at his company's panel at PAX today. Gearbox fired off a press release to make it official.

"The Gearbox Software team and I are ecstatic that we have grown to a position to be able to pick up and carry the torch and help Duke rise back to glory in his time of need," Gearbox president Randy Pitchford said in the press release today. "Fans of the legendary hero and all the incredible talent that have ever helped him all deserve the very best support that we can bring. Please join me in supporting Duke in his triumphant return so that we may all enjoy the unique, one-in-million entertainment experience that only Duke Nukem can bring."

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The former owners of Duke Nukem forever, Scott Miller and George Broussard of 3D Realms also weighed in in the release:

"Gearbox was handpicked as the new home for Duke Nukem because of their continued passion, commitment and long-time heritage with the brand and 3D Realms," Miller said. "Gearbox and Duke Nukem make for a devastating match made in video game heaven. The gaming community's love and demand for the Duke Nukem brand never wavered and Gearbox will not disappoint them. As you have seen from titles such as Borderlands, Gearbox will bring the right level of addictively compelling gameplay, humor and high powered explosive action to the franchise. Duke Nukem is back and will be bigger than ever."

"Gearbox was the only home appropriate for the Duke Nukem brand," Broussard added. "They are very talented and possess the perfect perspective and understanding of the brand. Their vision for its future direction is exciting and unbelievable. I am personally cannot wait for fans to see their unique take on the franchise This will be a win-win situation for everyone involved, especially the fans."

Check out the rest of Kotaku's full Duke Nukem coverage.

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DISCUSSION

At this point I'm waiting for people to just kind of take a breath and start asking the question of whether 'Duke' is relevant to games anymore. Does 'over the top violence' really jazz people, make them go "YOU DON'T SEE THAT IN VIDEO GAMES MUCH THESE DAYS!" Oh look, over the top scantily clad and being racy! Ooo, that's not Itagaki's fucking career or anything. Duke himself was largely a vaguely amusing nod to various characters, and like 90% of his lines were just cribbed off Other action movies and song cliches. It amused back then because characters didn't talk. Because we had just taken baby steps out of Sound.

I liked Duke, for it's time. It was, yeah, not exactly like most games for its era and it was a solid FPS to add onto it—but the things that made it solid? Are so 'EVERY FPS has that' now that I'm forced to wonder where the appeal of Duke is. We've been there.

Because honest to god, I was pretty much 'there' at the era that Duke heralded. I remember why it was a big deal, giggling in incessent, adolscent fashion as I went from fragging Mario or Final Fantasy to this... but these days your average FPS has a guy who chainsaws big monsters in half on a regular basis, has games that put a couple half-naked polygonal girls on the screen to run around filling adolscent fantasy. It's all just part of the landscape, and even the parody you can wring out of it has been strip-mined.

Maybe I'm just getting old, but Duke doesn't feel edgy to me anymore, at all. Take away that, and it's a struggle to make me care at all.