Duke Nukem: Forever Review

Kid Safe: Very Low (0 / 10)                             Game Quality: Low (4.0 / 10)


Genre: First Person Shooter

-          These games are characterized by the viewpoint and weapons used in the title. In a first person shooter, you are looking down the barrel of a gun as though you yourself are holding the weapon. Likewise, as the term "shooter" implies, the game specifically uses guns and firearms.

Internet Requirements: Moderate

-          Duke Nukem: Forever features a moderate internet requirement due to the presence of an internet-based multiplayer mode as well as the ability to download extra content to the game. Compared to most other first-person shooters available, the online multiplayer is a touch unimpressive; however it does feature a number of classical game types that older gamers may enjoy.

Story Summary: In Duke Nukem: Forever, you take the role of Duke Nukem: a rude, crude, righteous

dude that is not only Earth's one true-hero, but also a lady's man, gambler, alcoholic who has accomplished just about everything there is from owning hotels, winning movie awards, climbing Mt. Everest, going to the moon, and more. When Earth is attacked by an Alien menace that is bent on destroying the world as well as stealing and impregnating Earth's women, Duke is there to answer the call. Picking up and gun and going, Duke will fight against every odd to defeat the Alien menace and rescue Earth's women before the world as we know it is lost.

 Kid Safe: Very Low (0 / 10) - Absolutely NOT Recommended for Children

-          Foul Language: Very High - Not Recommended For Children

o   Duke Nukem: Forever features a very high amount of foul language in the form of the following words: "s*it*, "f*ck*, "motherf*cker", "a*s", "b*tch", "p*ssy", "d*mn", "h*ll", "b*stard", and more. These words are heard often throughout gameplay from most of the characters in the title. These words are heard due to both anger and frustration as well as without necessary need or prompting. One character in particular (Cpt. Dillon) is especially bad as just about every word out of his mouth is foul in nature and, if we were to censor his sentences, it would sound like Morse Code.

-          Violence and Gore: Very High - Not Recommended For Children

o   Duke Nukem Forever also features an extremely high amount of violence and gore. To start off, players will be fighting and killing humans, humanoids, and alien creatures. Players will be using a variety of weapons including their bare fists, pistols, laser rifles and blasters, machine guns, shotguns, special weapons that freeze or shrink their enemies, rocket launchers, pipe bombs, and trip mines. Players will also be able to use a wide variety of standard household objects to attack and kill enemies including statues, trophies, vases, traschcans, weight training equipment, barrels, and more. Players are generally encouraged to attack and kill humanoid and alien monsters, however they will be provided the choice to assault and even kill other human beings.

o   While fighting enemies, players will be using an array of weapons to injure and kill. Injuring your opponent, whether with guns, thrown objects, fists, or otherwise, will often result in a spray of red blood from your enemy. Enemies will often be killed outright by your assaults, causing them to simply stop moving, elicit a scream or death cry, and fall down dead; however occasionally opponents will be incapacitated. If an enemy is incapacitated, players are encouraged to "Execute" them, in which duke will walk up and either punch or kick the enemy so hard that their head explodes in a spray of viscera and gore. Certain firearms are able to blow enemies into multiple pieces or able to rip limbs off, leaving a fleshy stump.

o   Aside from fighting, players will see a fair amount of other gory scenes. "Pig Cop" enemies, when angered, will throw their heads back and spray blood from their mouths and noses. There will also be scenes and alien monsters attacking and killing humans as they run in terror. Players will occasionally find eviscerated or desecrated bodies; one example being a skinned human body that was hanging by a single rope in front of a pipe that the player must enter. Players will find young women that have been captured and impregnated by the aliens; if they don't kill the women themselves, players will watch them bloat and explode into a spray of gore and viscera as an alien baby rips out of them.          

-          Sexually-Related Content: Very High - Not Recommended For Children

o   Duke Nukem: Forever has an extremely high amount of sexually-related content as well as nudity. Starting off with the nudity, players will see a pretty large amount of naked women in this game. The first hotel that you explore is decorated entirely by statues of nude women in a variety of poses; most often they are sitting and baring their breasts. On top of this, players will find a number of young women in "The Hive" level that have been captured and are either being impregnated or waiting for impregnation from the aliens. These women are fully nude and fully visible with both breasts and vagina in plain view. Finally, players will also meet strippers and prostitutes later in the game that are topless are either wearing nipple-pastes or have bare breasts.

o   Aside from the nudity, Duke Nukem also features a large amount of reference to and implication of sexual acts. The game opens up with the implication of two women performing fellatio on your character, with your character moaning and two women giggling, coughing, and gagging. Later on, players will lean up against a bathroom wall (which has a hole in it), and begins to moan as though something sexual is occurring. Likewise, players will not only enter a strip-club, but will also be tasked with finding and collecting a variety of different sex toys.

-          Use of Drugs and Alcohol: Very High - Not Recommended For Children

o   Duke Nukem: Forever features, wouldn't you know it, a very high amount of drugs and alcohol. The game regularly features scenes of smoking tobacco in the form of both cigarettes and alcohol from a variety of different characters, including Duke Nukem himself. On top of that, players will also be encouraged to use both alcohol and prescription drugs to "power up" in the game. Players are encouraged to drink beer in order to take less damage from enemy attacks; all the while causing the screen to blur and sounds to slur. Players are also encouraged to use Steroids in order to boost their strength and go into a rage.


o   While we don't normally have to cover something like this, I believe Duke requires a special note. Aside from EVERYTHING else, this game features a fair amount of toilet humor. We're not kidding. Players will be able to use toilets, looking down as they urinate into toilets and urinals. Doing this will occasionally give them bonuses. On top of this, players will be able to reach into toilets and pull out wet ***, which they can then throw against walls to make large brown splats of human waste.


Game Quality: Low (4.0 / 10)

-          Graphics / Visuals: Low

o   Duke Nukem: Forever features a low overall quality of graphics and visuals. To be frank, this game's graphics are just a mess, and doesn't really have any redeemable quality to it. The visuals feel incredibly dated and the graphics are just laughable compared to most other games coming out these days. To start off, the textures, i.e. something looking like it would in really like (stone looking like stone, wood like wood, sand like sand, etc.), are pretty awful. On top of this, characters move awkwardly, resembling RC-Car-esque models where a character's legs will move, pivot, and even jump...all the while the character's upper body stays perfectly still as a statue. Last, but certainly not least, the game suffers from endless graphical glitches and loading problems. The game's graphics will occasionally "split", leaving white lines running along edges as the visuals break apart and sometimes the graphics will take seconds to even load properly, causing most surfaces to be just glazes of mottled colors splotches thrown together that  look vaguely like it might be a texture.

-          Audio: Low

o   Duke Nukem's audio quality is really a mixed bag in terms of both voice acting and music. On the one side, the one or two pieces of music that the game actually has is pretty darn good. I have to admit that I'm tempted to go out and buy the opening theme song to Duke Nukem just because it's such an amazing little piece of rock music. On the other hand, those one or two pieces of music are it; there isn't much more than dead silence in the musical department through the entire game.

o   The voice acting is equally frustrating. Duke's one-liners throughout the title can actually be pretty comical (although a fair share are certainly pretty crude) and always tended to leave me wondering what he might say next. Duke has very little in the way of emoting, but that's the idea with his character: he's the eternal hero who isn't phased by anything. Again, on the contrary, the voice acting for just about every other character is simply pathetic. Half the time I had to wonder if the voice acting was intentionally bad. No single character seemed to have the ability to really emote; it sounded like just about everyone was simply reading their lines off of cue cards. Even some of the young women AS they are captured sound like they are just reading off the lines "Help Me Duke" rather than showing any kind of genuine fear.

-          Gameplay / Playability: Low

o   Duke Nukem: Forever features a relatively low level of gameplay and playability. Starting off, as always, with playability; Duke just can't quite seem to bring his A-Game to the table. The game uses controls that are akin to other first person shooters, so anyone who has experience shouldn't get too lost. Likewise, the game proceeds to provide a quick explanation of SOME of the controls; however strangely enough, other explanations and introductions are completely left out. On top of that, the game will prompt you on how to proceed forward in the game by highlighting whatever item you have to interact with in gold: at least...that's what it theoretically does. For no obvious reason, the game will just NOT point out where you need to go in certain instances. Two of these times I was literally locked in a room for 10 minutes trying to figure out where to go.

o    Next, the gameplay. Duke Nukem's gameplay is an interesting little mess. First, the game...has...way...too...many...loading...times...that...take...too...long...to....load. I have no idea what happened in this department, but this game has a "loading" screen (so that more of the game can load) just about every 10 to 15 minutes. From there, the game loads for a solid minute or two; often leaving me to twiddle my thumbs out of boredom. Once you actually get the game to load, it is a whole new set of problems. The first-person shooting of this game (when it happens) is dull and uninspired, generally facing you off against a couple of enemies that you gun down quickly and leave you to explore a rather boring world. You will come across a number of mini-games that you can play such as pool, air hockey, pinball, and more; however they are so poorly put together that they generally just feel like annoying tasks more than a fun and innovative way to enjoy the world.         

-          Dollar-Value: Low

o   Overall, Duke Nukem: Forever just has a low dollar-value. I wouldn't even bother with this game unless you are a huge duke-nukem fan and are very bored with an excess of cash. The game features a decent amount of gameplay, anywhere from 12 to 15 hours. At the same time, the game tends to be so boring and unenjoyable that getting through the game is a task. The game also features a multiplayer element that harkens back to old-school video games from the 90's in all the wrong ways: bland, uneventful, and often broken. Don't even waste your time with this game.


-          If you are looking for a game with less mature rated content, just about any other first-person shooter will do; perhaps with the exception of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Personally, I believe any of the Battlefield or Ghost Recon: Advance War Fighter titles would be excellent choices at the majority of them are all Teen Rated by the ESRB ratings system. On the flipside, if you are looking for a game with more creative and interesting gameplay, few can hold a candle to this title; however, two good recommendations might be Borderlands or Gears of War. Finally, if you are really craving the true Duke Nukem experience: Just go play Duke Nukem: 3D. It's available for download on Xbox Live and is far more fun.