In this day and age of constant communication with other human beings, and even bots, games have been struck by what seems to be a multiplayer epidemic. Every game that comes out has to have a multiplayer function even if it is a horribly tacked on funk fest (cough)Dead Space 2(cough). Not only do these games tack on a cheesy multiplayer but they tout the feature as game defining. This just adds insult to injury.
However Duke Nukem Forever seems to be shying away from such a thing, preferring to silently announce the features of the included multiplayer. Did it need a multiplayer? With the campaign reported to be three times the length of Modern Warfare 2, making it 16-18 hours, multiplayer seems like a waste of time. But here’s the thing, multiplayer isn’t the main focus or a high selling point for the Duke. Instead the developers over at Gearbox have decided to stick to their guns, no pun intended, and see the Duke through his adventure 12 years in the making. Below is a list of features in the multiplayer:
- There will be two teams of four, for a total of eight players on any given map. One team is red, the other blue.
- 4 gameplay modes have been confirmed, with three having been sampled during this demo session: Dukematch (deathmatch), Team Dukematch (team deathmatch), Capture the Babe (capture the flag), and Hail to the King (king of the hill).
- In Capture the Babe, when you have picked up the other team’s babe she will occasionally start freaking out, slowing you down. tapping a button will allow you to “give her a reassuring slap” to calm her down.
- There will be ten maps at launch, including remakes of classic areas such as “Dukeburger” where everyone is shrunk while the environment is huge.
- Jetpacks are back, but only for multiplayer.
- Weapons that are now confirmed: pistol, shotgun, ripper chaingun, pipebomb, shrinker, RPG, freeze ray, tripbomb, railgun, and the devestator.
- You can only carry up to two primary weapons at a time, in addition to pipe and trip bombs.
- When a player is hit by the shrink ray, they can run around in an attempt to not get squished, and can still use their weapons, which at that point will only do 10% damage. After some time the effects of the shrinker will dissipate.
- Tripbombs can be planted on both other players and enemies alike – how they then work after being attached was not disclosed.
- The Holoduke is here as well, but with more functionality – a hologram appears wherever you set it down, and your player will become cloaked, setting you up to perform a stealthy kill.
- Steroids are here as well, which enables a one-hit kill via punch.
- A leveling system has been introduced, which allows you to customize your character. Points are mostly earned for kills, though there are special rewards for different feats performed such as killing someone while in Holoduke-induced stealth mode. The highest level attainable is 42, no word on a “Prestige” equivalent.
There is enough depth here to keep the multiplayer crowd happy, albeit it isn’t a full list at all, but it also shows that it isn’t what Gearbox is putting all its time into. Read it as a bad thing if you will but the Duke always preferred the company of the ladies.