The infamous Duke Nukem Forever was a game that no one thought would ever be released. But, lo and behold, the great Duke Nukem finally graced our gaming experience with his presence and will be arriving on the Mac in just over a month. However, as everyone probably knows, it was not an easy road to get here. Let’s look back and see what Duke Nukem Forever has lived through.
May: Duke Nukem 3D is such a massive success that conceptualization and discussion of a sequel immediately begins within 3D Realms
Notable events of 1996:
-Computer chess player, Deep Blue, defeats world chess champion Garry Kasparov.
-The Nintendo 64 console is released.
-Bill Clinton reelected as president.
-O.J. Simpson’s trial begins.
April: Duke Nukem Forever is officially announced with the intention by 3D Realms to release in “mid-1998.”
November: Duke Nukem Forever appears on the cover of PC Gamer magazine. Inside are the first screenshots ever released.
Notable events of 1997:
-President Clinton bars federal funding for any research on human cloning.
-NASA’s Pathfinder space probe lands on the surface of Mars.
-James Cameron’s movie, Titanic, premiers in the US.
-Braveheart wins Best Picture at the 68th Academy Awards
May: The first trailer for Duke Nukem Forever is released at E3.
June: 3D Realms announces a change to the Unreal Engine for Duke Nukem Forever, effectively restarting the project.
Notable events of 1998:
-Japan launches a probe to Mars, joining the US and Russia as an outer space- exploring nation.
-President Bill Clinton admits to having inappropriate relations with Monica Lewinsky.
-Larry Page and Sergey Brin found Google in Menlo Park, California.
March: 3D Realms announces that Megadeth is to cover and record the theme song for Duke Nukem Forever.
November: PC Gamers’ infamous “Miss Me?” cover story, featuring Duke Nukem Forever, hits newsstands. Inside are a large number of new screenshots
December: GT Interactive is purchased by Infogrames and the publishing rights for Duke Nukem Forever becomes the property of Gatherings of Developers.
Notable events of 1999:
-The Euro is established.
-Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace is released in theaters becoming the highest grossing Star Wars film to date.
-After 22 years of restorative work, Leonardo de Vinci’s The Last Supper is put back on display.
-Sega returns to the console scene with the Sega Dreamcast.
May: Take-Two Interactive purchases Gathering of Developers.
Notable events of 2000:
-Y2K. Nothing happened.
-The billionth living person in India is born.
-United Nations Millennium Declaration is made in New York.
-Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant is finally completely shut down.
May: At E3 2001, the highly regarded Duke Nukem Forever 10th anniversary trailer is released. It is arguably considered to be one of the best video game trailers of all time.
Notable events of 2001:
-Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, launches.
-The UK foot in mouth crisis begins.
-The world’s first artificial heart is implanted in Robert Tools.
-9/11 attacks in New York City.
-Enron files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
September: 3D Realms announces that the new in-game physics engine, Meqon Game Dynamics, has been chosen for Duke Nukem Forever.
Notable events of 2004:
-A whale explodes in Tainan City, Taiwan.
-Facebook is founded.
-The last Oldsmobile rolls off the assembly line.
-Taipei 101 opens. At the time, it was the tallest skyscraper in the world.
August: A large contingent of employees leave 3D Realms for Gearbox Software.
Notable events of 2006:
-Human Genome Project publishes the last chromosome sequence.
-North Korea claims to have conducted its first-ever nuclear test.
July: The famouse “Ventrilo Harassment” video using Duke’s voice is uploaded to youtube and viewed over 6 million times.
December: The first video teaser for Duke Nukem Forever premiers in over 6 years.
Notable events of 2007:
-A 2,100-year-old melon is discovered in western Japan.
-The final book of the Harry Potter series is released and becomes the fastest selling book in history.
-The Writer’s Guild of America goes on strike.
September: the last official Duke Nukem Forever screenshot from 3D Realms is released to the community.
Notable events of 2008:
-Stock markets around the world plunge due to growing fears of a U.S. recession.
-Fidel Castro announces his resignation as President of Cuba.
-Michael Phelps wins 8 gold medals at the 2008 Olympics.
-Large Hadron Collider is completed.
May: 3D Realms lays off the Duke Nukem Forever development team.
June: Gearbox and 3D Realms begin negotiation of the asset purchase agreement for the Duke Nukem IP and Duke Nukem Forever.
July : Triptych Games signs paperwork with 3D Realms to complete the single-player campaign of Duke Nukem Forever.
August: DNF’s narrative script is written at Triptych and approved by 3D Realms. Triptych gets to surprise Jon St. John, the original voice actor of Duke Nukem ,with a phone call.
November: Single-player work on DNF is complete.
December: Gearbox and 2K Games begin renegotiation of the publishing agreement for Duke Nukem Forever.
Notable events of 2009:
-Michael Jackson passes away, triggering an outpouring of worldwide grief.
-North Korea announces 2nd successful nuclear test.
-Large Hadron Collider is restarted after shutdown in 2008.
January: Triptych finalizes their single-player version of the game and begins negotiations with Gearbox Software.
February: Triptych relocates to Gearbox’s offices and resumes work alongside Gearbox and Piranha to help port Duke Nukem Forever to consoles, add multiplayer, and polish the features in the game.
May: Take-Two and 3D Realms resolve and settle all differences regarding legal complaints from the previous year.
September: Gearbox and 2K Games surprise everyone by showing off the first playable build of Duke Nukem Forever at PAX 2010. Gearbox publically announces that it has acquired the Duke Nukem Brand.
October: 2K Games and Gearbox announce the Duke Nukem Forever First Access Club to be included in every copy of the Borderlands Game of the Year Edition. This allowed participating customers first access to the Duke Nukem Forever consumer demo.
Notable events of 2010:
-Wikileaks is busy this year publishing over 90,000 internal documents relating to the War in Afganistan and then releasing more than 250,000 American diplomatic cables.
-The first 24-hour flight by a solar powered plan is completed by Solar Impulse.
-WHO declares that the H1N1 influenza pandemic is over.
January: 2k Games and Gearbox announces the release date of May 3rd for Duke Nukem Forever along with the first reveal trailers with 2K Games for Duke Nukem Forever since 2007.
June: Gearbox and 2K Games release the first consumer demo for Duke Nukem Forever then a few days afterwards Gearbox, Triptych Games, Piranha Games, and 3D Realms release Duke Nukem Forever 15 years since work first began on the Duke Nukem sequel. 2K games launches and ships Duke Nukem Forever worldwide to a very patient audience.
August: Aspyr Media announces a Duke Nukem Forever port to Mac so all Mac gamers can take part in the historic release of this game.
You know, if Duke Nukem Forever were a child, he’d probably be getting his learner’s permit right now. What do you guys think about this absurdly long development cycle?