The lights are on
I first played Duke Nukem 3D a few years ago when a friend and I had the conversation that went something like "How have you never played this? This was my childhood." After spending the few hours necessary to finish it, I really enjoyed the experience. Cheesy comedy, blatant perversion and a level of interactivity that I don't think any other game from that era every really matched. All of this got me very excited for Duke Nukem Forever.
When I got the game at midnight, I ran home to install it immediately. As soon as I booted it up, I was treated to exactly what I expected: Interactivity, perversion and the Duke style one liners I love. That's about all this game really is, a shined up version of the old Duke Nukem. Level designs have been more detailed, fortunately, but other than this, everything remains the same, which is where the downfalls start.
The graphics are mediocre at best, and for some odd reason, my 580 GTX has issues with the game's shadows in certain rooms, which I find a bit unacceptable when you compare it to the shadows displayed in games like Dead Space 2, which showed flawlessly at over 60 fps on my gpu. Next, the slight input lag created from the vsync option (even when enabled in the control panel and disabled in game). It's not detrimentally horrid, but when you spend over $150 on a mouse, it tends to become a bit more noticeable. As for the actual gameplay complaints, it's not that anything is overly horrible, it's just that it feels a bit archaic.
The gun play is unchanged from old style games, making it feel a bit clunky and slow. The other huge hit against it, to me, was the ending. The game started to slow down dramatically towards the end of the game, which made the whole experience begin to feel drab.
Finally, the multiplayer portion. The concept of decorating your mansion with Duke paraphernalia is hilarious, and almost driving enough to make me want to continue playing it. As you level up in the game, you receive Duke themed items that sit around you private mansion, yet unfortunately, these items give you no real benefit for online play. When you finally jump into actual gameplay, the interest in the game starts to slow to a halt. The map designs are very simplistic, turning most matches into a race to the nearest power weapon and shoot at each other in the center of the map, even in capture the babe mode. The spawning system is very unforgiving as well; each team has their set spawn zones and no temporary immunity upon spawning, so on many maps, you will often find yourself spawn camped to the point of rage.
All in all, Duke has some high points as well as some low ones. If you are a fan of the Duke, I wouldn't suggest against playing this game, I would merely suggest you don't pick this up expecting it to be the next groundbreaking entry in the shooter genre, but just as what you'd expect from Duke: beer, boobs and cheesy one liners.
i think my favorite thing is the interactivity
If there's ever another Duke game, maybe Gearbox will be able to turn it into something better without completely changing the things that is so totally Duke.