Duke Nukem Forever: Did Not Finish



  •  The news is making the rounds that 3DRealms, the long-time (and I do mean long) developers of the mysterious Duke Nukem Forever is closing its doors.  Aside from legitimizing the racing term we've been applying to the DNF abbreviation for the past most-of-a-decade, former 3DRealms employees [citation needed, I know] are speaking up about the WTF's in their workplace. 

    Following are a few quotes from a supposed employee going by the moniker "Channel_F":

    The typical work flow there went something like this:
    Designer would be assigned a task (build a new map, rebuild an old map,
    polish a bit of a map, etc.). Designer would work on said task for two,
    three weeks, a month, all the while lower management would be looking
    over it and making sure it was going in a "good general direction."
    Designer would move on to another task. A month or two later upper
    management would finally look at the work and say, "It's all wrong, do
    it again." Rinse, repeat.

    Entire maps would be done from the ground up, almost to beta quality,
    and then thrown out simply because no one would make decisions early on
    in the process...

    Another example of WTF is the fact that there was one part of one map
    that was being worked on before I started working there. Nineteen
    months later and the same designer was still working on the same part
    of that same map...

    Another analysis points out the following steps in the game's "life cycle"

    Duke Nukem Forever was a computer game that had been under development
    by 3D Realms since its announcement on April 28th, 1997, originally
    slated to use the (then) state of the art Quake II 3D engine...

    Just about when mid-1998 arrived (June, specifically) 3D Realms
    announced they were changing 3D engines to Epic's Unreal engine. George
    Broussard, the producer and co-creator of the Duke Nukem series
    insisted that this change would not cause any significant delay...

    1999 came and went, Duke Nukem Forever saw another engine change, this
    time to an updated version of the same Unreal engine they were working
    on...

    In 2002, 3D Realms hired new programmers, and decided instead of
    switching to another 3D engine, they would just develop their own...

    In September of 2004, GameSpot.com revealed a rumor that Duke Nukem
    Forever had made its fifth 3D engine change, this time using the Quake
    III engine. Broussard denied the rumor, but announced only a few days
    later that they had switched to a different physics engine for the game...

    I dunno what they've been doing since then.

     

    Though it does sound like just another tale of managerial miscommunication and incompetence, I have to say that I have never seen the phenomenon taken to such an extreme in the private sector.  

    The following site has some great examples of things that have occured entirely during the development window of Duke Nukem Forever, such as:

    • "Black Isle was formed, released seven titles and was shut down."
    • Every Pokemon game released outside of Japan was done so during DNF's dev. window 
    • The same for every GTA game (Not just the GTA 3 series)
    • Google
    • "The concept of Bullet Time has been developed, pioneered, and completely run in to the ground."
    • Home internet connections grow from 33.6 kbps modems to multi-Mbps cable and the like
    • Britney Spears's entire musical career (hopefully including the end)
    • The International Space Station
    • Barack Obama goes from a newly elected Illinois Senator to POTUS

     

    So long, DNF.  And good riddance.



  • [url=http://forums.thedailywtf.com/forums/t/11503.aspx]Too late[/url].



  •  About time. Management reminds me of my former boss! And I mean: remind as in Carbon Copy. Wow. Good thing I never cared about Duke Nukem.



  • @Spectre said:

    Too late.
    Crapshakes.  3:04 AM?  Seriously?  That's what I get for living on the West Coast. 

    Well, please enjoy my list of DNF's slew of troubled marriages with engines, or at least the list of / link to "Things that took less time than DNF".



  •  You've got to wonder what they were thinking with this.  I mean come on, how long can you possibly string along ONE PROJECT!?!



  • @Master Chief said:

     You've got to wonder what they were thinking with this.  I mean come on, how long can you possibly string along ONE PROJECT!?!

    To be fair, they were stringing out Prey for 11 years at the same time.  You gotta give them credit for being able to multitask their procrastination.



  • @bstorer said:

    To be fair, they were stringing out Prey for 11 years at the same time.  You gotta give them credit for being able to multitask their procrastination.

     

    11 years in development, and that's all that came out of it.

    No wonder they're going out of business.



  • @Master Chief said:

    11 years in development, and that's all that came out of it.
    That got me thinking... Is there any way for a single computer game to really live up to the expectations of over twelve years of development?  I mean... by this point, any DNF that didn't include a direct brain interface and a cure for cancer would probably have been looked upon as a disappointment. 

    I wonder how long ago the managment at 3DRealms realzied this and tried to figure out a way to back out quietly without ever actually having to release the game.  :-)



  • @North Bus said:

    That got me thinking... Is there any way for a single computer game to really live up to the expectations of over twelve years of development?  I mean... by this point, any DNF that didn't include a direct brain interface and a cure for cancer would probably have been looked upon as a disappointment. 

    I wonder how long ago the managment at 3DRealms realzied this and tried to figure out a way to back out quietly without ever actually having to release the game.  :-)

     

    Judging by Prey, I wouldn't blame them a bit.



  • My bet is on DNF being the greatest (or longest running, at least) prank in the history of software



  • @campkev said:

    My bet is on DNF being the greatest (or longest running, at least) prank in the history of software

    No, that would be [url=http://www.gnu.org/fun/jokes/unix-hoax.html]Unix[/url].



  • @North Bus said:

    That got me thinking... Is there any way for a single computer game to really live up to the expectations of over twelve years of development?

    Starcraft II is well on its way to do this. It's anticipated since 1998 (release of SC:Brood War),  in development since 2003 and nothing indicates they're going to finish in 2009.

    On thing is sure though: the game is going to be awesome. 



  • @dstozek said:

    On thing is sure though: the game is going to be awesome. 
     

    You expect that yeah, but the game isn't out yet. It only validates  North Bus his point: people are expecting great things form it. What if it doesn't live upto them?

    Furthermore: I never played starcraft but I've heard a couple of times that the game only received it's astonishing balance after a couple of patches. What if that will be the same for Starcraft two?

    Although Blizzard ofcourse has been swimming in Dollars, Euro's, Rubles, Yuans Won's, ... (ommited every other currency in countries that have internet), gold and diamonds thanks to World Of Warcraft so they do actually have (and had) the resources to make an astonishing game.



  • @Spectre said:

    @campkev said:

    My bet is on DNF being the greatest (or longest running, at least) prank in the history of software

    No, that would be Unix.

    Ah, to remember a day when the Unix nerds weren't the elitists...


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