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2009/05/09

Duke Nukem Forever Myth #1: DNF and id Tech 4

I’ve read so many times over the last few days and in the past, on forums, YouTube, Magazines like GEAR, and even on Gamespot (who initially reported it back in 2004, just after Doom 3’s release) that when 3D Realms went under, Duke Nukem Forever was at that time using the id Tech 4 engine (Doom 3). 

It’s very surprising how widespread this belief is. I even picked up on another site that claimed that it used the id Tech 3 (Quake III) engine at one point (don’t know how they got to this conclusion). 

It's funny- Gamespot posted about it (id Tech 4), then updated it, then just the other day when they wrote a tribute of sorts, they brought it up again: "3D Realms' closure marks a cruelly ironic end to the Duke Nukem Forever saga. After being completely restarted from scratch using the Doom 3 engine, the shooter resurfaced in December 2007 in the form of a brief teaser trailer.
 
This is not true! George Broussard even denied the rumours and Scott Miller conducted an interview with YouGamers where he maintained that they were still using a heavily modified Unreal Engine 2Apparently the whole id Tech 4 thing was an error by Take-Two CEO Rich Roedel, DNF's one time publisher.


3D Realms first, in early 1997, played around with the Quake engine and made some mock ups (bullshots) for PC Gamer. Then they got the Quake II code in November of that year, and this is when they really started work, and unveiled their first video at E3 1998, where DNF used the id Tech 2 engine.


Just after E3, 3DR switched to the Unreal engine and later upgraded to the 220 build code (Unreal Tournament) and eventually showed off the second video at E3 2001.


Then after that it was said that they started with an early version of Unreal engine 2 as far back as 2001, but George claimed that most of the code was written from scratch and that little of the original existed, only UnrealScript, the networking code, and the UnrealEd.


The part where people might get confused is that in 2004, 3DR started with a new physics engine, by Meqon, to replace the Karma physics engine.


At no point did 3DR switch to another game engine, id Tech 3, 4, or otherwise between 2001 and 2009.


So, Unreal engine 2 - heavily modified. Only nowadays 3DR claim it's a proprietary engine with little UE code in it.


Sources:
http://www.gamespot.com/news/6107100.html
http://www.gamespot.com/gbc/action/dukenukem/news.html?sid=6209271
http://www.yougamers.com/articles/1820_scott_miller_-_the_man_who_would_be_king-page4/
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