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10 reasons why Duke Nukem is truly iconic

10 reasons why Duke Nukem is truly iconic

“It’s time to kick ass and chew bubble gum… and I’m all outta gum.”
Duke’s one-liners are the stuff of legend and, in some cases, the stuff of other people’s scripts. This, Duke’s most famous line, is pinched almost word-for-word from the film They Live, although we have to say Duke delivers it better than Rowdy Roddy Piper.

“Suck my boomstick!”
Doom may have set the precedent for the gaming shotgun as we know and love it, but Duke Nukem 3D definitely played a part in defining it. It’s big, it’s incredibly loud, it’s double-barreled and it turns enemies into piles of sloppy, meaty chunks. And in Duke Nukem Advance it came with an unsurpassed four barrels.

Duke Nukem Taking Forever
This was the nickname given to Duke Nukem Forever by its own project leader’s kids. Never has such a hotly anticipated game taken so very, very long. 12 years! And still counting. No matter what the game itself ultimately offers, it will always be most famous for that 12 (or maybe more) year development period.

Best. Trailer. Ever.
The E3 2008 trailer for Duke Nukem Trilogy on the PSP and DS is the single greatest game trailer ever released. Watch it now. If you don’t love it, there’s something really badly wrong with you and the rest of us are sorry you suck so much.

“Damn… I’m looking good.”
Duke Nukem was the first FPS hero who was actually able to understand and interact with the world around him. He could go for a pee, he could decide he didn’t have time to play pinball and he could even give money to naughty ladies. But the thing Duke liked to do most was admire himself in the mirror. He really is one handsome dude.

“Shake it baby!”
Duke Nukem loves strippers and all of his games feature them at some point – usually at the beginning. And the end. And most of the way through the middle. But they’re not just there as gratuitous window dressing. They’re integral to every Duke Nukem plot and key to the economic stability of Duke’s world.

“Nobody steals our graphics… and lives!”
Before it went 3D and made millions of dollars, the Duke Nukem series 2D and pioneered the concept of shareware gaming. A pioneer in terms of its business model perhaps, but quite derivative in terms of its look. Very derivative really. A lot of its graphical assets were, ahem, borrowed from classic 2D shooter, Turrican. For a full breakdown, go here.

“Damn! I hate disco!”
Duke Nukem was one of the first game series to feature licensed, and even commissioned, tracks by well-known bands. As Duke himself often says, he hates disco, but loves top hip-hop and metal artists such as Megadeth, Xzibit, Wu Tang Clan and Slayer.

“I’m a bird! I’m a plane! I’m Duke Nukem!”
Duke Nukem 3D’s jetpack is one of its most loved ad best remembers features. While other FPSs of the time were confined to cramped corridor environments, in Duke Nukem 3D, you could fly.

Why I’m So Great
The main reason Duke Nukem is an icon is that he says he is, and whatever Duke says, goes. He even wrote a book called Why I’m So Great so that readers could learn valuable life lessons courtesy of gaming’s all-time biggest ego. How considerate of him.

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  • vrx

    Simply ,truly,unquestionably EPIC…

  • truth

    that trailer wasnt cool at all… it wasnt even funny…

  • areyoukidding

    Dude that trailer was wack.. all it was were logos playing for 5 minutes you figure after 12 years they would have some gameplay footage

  • Gavin Mackenzie

    But that trailer isn’t for Duke Nukem Forever, it’s for Duke Nukem Trilogy. The lack of gameplay footage is a deliberate effect. You need to get in touch with your inner action hero.

  • Seriously, that trailer was several images playing for 4 minutes!