Image: Gregor Punchatz

Gregor Punchatz, a movie special effects artist, has shared a video revealing that Gearbox Software had been planning a new Duke Nukem game years back called Duke Nukem Begins. It would have served as the origin story for 3D Realms’ wise-cracking, tough-guy character.

The title was canceled over a decade ago and never saw the light of day, but Punchatz’s video suggests that Duke Nukem Begins would have been a third-person shooter that included a co-op element, allowing up to four players to team up as multiple Duke Nukem characters in different-colored tank tops to take on Pig Cops and other memorable enemies from the franchise.

Punchatz clarified that this video is a vertical slice (an animated version of what the game was meant to look like), making it unclear just how good Duke Nukem Begins’ graphics might have actually been if it was released.

Duke Nukem Begins was never made due to legal issues that Gearbox Software had with the Duke Nukem franchise at the time.

Because it is still a piece I am damn proud of, I am releasing it 13 years after its creation. The whole team that worked with me deserves to see this released into the wild.

I hope this somehow resurrects this version of the game by showing the world how awesome it would have been…

Source: Gregor Punchatz

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  1. I think cancelling this was probably the right move. Duke Nukem Forever was lackluster to say the least and while the IP has potential, that type of co-op horde mode would have been a big risk for the franchise I don’t think would have paid off.

  2. Today? Ehhh. But if they had done this instead of DNF, might have been better off. Still looks like it could be fun, in a xbox 360 co-op horde kind of way.

  3. In this “let’s see who gets offended by whatever” world; there’s no place for a duke nukem game.

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