Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition Review

I've got balls of steel. You will too after finishing Duke Nukem 3D. If you never got round to the hard as nails FPS from 3D Realms back in 1996, now's your chance.

Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition is a remastered collection of the original game, the updated Atomic edition of the game and all of Duke 3D's official expansions: Caribbean: Life's a Beach, Duke it out in D.C and Nuclear Winter. The expansions, none of which developed by 3D Realms themselves, were pretty sought after by fans of the game especially as the only one that was officially authorised was Caribbean: Life's a Beach, which was developed by Sunstorm Interactive. Duke it out in D.C, also by Sunstorm, and Nuclear Winter by the companies Simply Silly Software and WizardWorks have only recently been adopted officially. So if you've always wondered what it'd be like running Duke around tropical sand dunes and chasing down an evil brainwashed Santa, Megaton Edition is your best bet.

Duke Nukem, being the kind of classic action game it is, has little story and not even an explanation until you go to the 'Help' menu where you are given a brief introduction to the game's plot. This isn't the kind of game you play to be engrossed in a plot, so this isn't necessarily a downside. The game starts off with Duke falling from his ship which has been shot down and it's your mission to explore the city of L.A. and begin a quest to destroy the alien pests for good, taking you to strip clubs, submarines and alien spaceships.

The NPCs in Duke Nukem 3D come only in one variety - the 'babes'. Scantily clad women are being kept prisoner either tied up or being used as a form of entertainment for the aliens in a strip club. Pressing the action button on these ladies of the night will have Duke giving them a tip and a private show isn't the only reward you'll receive - it will even earn you an achievement in true Duke style.

"Damn, you're ugly" - Duke

Anyone familiar with classics like Doom or Wolfenstein will be familiar with this game. In fact, there's even a hidden easter egg of the main character from Doom's dead body in a satanic chapel in the first chapter.

The game is a first person shooter where you focus on busting alien brains, collecting key cards, finding a ridiculous amount of hidden secrets and trying to do all of this as fast as possible. After each stage we are given a par time; a reasonable yet challenging time to get to the end of the level by and also a developers time - an even faster time that will get you into the ranks of 3D Realms legends themselves. Of course these are only for bragging rights - failing to beat either of these times will stop you from completing the game.

The Super Soaker - any alien scum's worst nightmare
There's a lot of replayability thanks to it's insane amount of secrets - you really have to look hard,  which means you won't be rushing through if you want to find the easter eggs and hidden rocket launchers. This allows for multiple different play styles of the game, exploration the first time through and a speed run to beat the level's time records after learning the map layout a bit better.

Duke is known for being hard as nails so this is a hardcore gamer's game. There are quick and easy save states to use however so you're not forced to get through every level in one sitting or, more appropriately, in one piece.

The game's old school graphics, 2D enemies and Duke's photo-realistic hand will still please retro-heads while not doing too much for younger gamers who are probably used to 3D models. The landscapes and world around Duke is all very much in 3D which gives the game a very interesting feel, one that isn't found much in the current generation of games.

One of the most infamous and well-loved parts of Duke's legacy is, of course, the witty comments made by Duke himself. Everything from 'I came here to kick ass and chew bubblegum' and 'Don't have time to play with myself' when you try to interact with a Duke Nukem arcade machine on the first level are everything that made Duke the character that he is and every quote is here in true form, and still bring a smile to your face every time.

Final Verdict:
Duke Nukem 3D: Megaton Edition is the perfect remedy for any fan who was disappointed by the long-awaited Duke Nukem Forever. DNF was more accessible to newer gamers in all aspects but many fans felt it took away from the original appeal of the game. The game's humorous tone and pop culture parodies were ahead of it's time and still achieve what they achieved back when the game was first out, especially considering more and more games are learning to stop being so serious. The grandfather of funny video game characters still shines through.

With the inclusion of the expansions, this is definitely a worthy purchase for any fan of Duke and is a solid reissue for those who never had the chance to shoot down some intergalactic pig-cops the first time round.

Story = 4/10
Gameplay = 8/10
Graphics/Sound = 6/10

We Know Gamers Final Score = 6/10


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