It actually happened. Last night, for the first time ever, I dreamt about Duke Nukem Forever.
And it was probably one of the best dreams I’d had in recent memory – not just because it was about DNF, but because it was one of the most emotion-fuelled ones I think I’ve ever had.
It started with me playing DNF, and walking around some building, which felt like some sort of top secret facility, or lab (it could have been the IMF: Impossible Mission Facility, from Duke Nukem 3D). And as you can imagine, there I was, picking things up, throwing them around; enjoying the interactivity that is said to be in the game.
As I made my way down the storeys of the building, I was talking to people, and one of these individuals sounded like Isaac Kleiner from Half-Life 2. “They’ve really gone all out on this!” I thought to myself, as I even caught myself shedding a tear or two every now and again. I was finally, actually playing the game of my dreams (no pun intended).
Then I reached a point where I had to get down on my belly and crawl under some part of the structure, all the while being careful to avoid shooting myself with my duel M1911s. That’s right, DUEL, as in TWO Golden Colts. I think this made it in there after playing a lot of Duke 3D with the DukePlus mod.
As I was crawling (and feeling that this was a scene straight out of Metal Gear Solid), and nearly getting Duke’s huge body stuck under the floorboards, the action picked up. Through an opening ahead, I saw a van ram some kid right up against the wall in an alley. Then I heard voices, like they were questioning the kid’s friend, whose name happened to be Christian. For every question he hesitated on, the van rammed the other guy against the wall again (might have been Yatta). Maybe they wanted to desperately know what playing DNF was like.
Then the dream skipped ahead for a bit. I must have exited the game for some ludicrous reason, and there I was, reading an issue of some gaming magazine down by the pool. It looked like it might have been NAG due to the familiar reviews and scoring system. I skipped all the way down to the bottom and read the last paragraph, while simultaneously, my other eye caught the final score and pros and cons down at the bottom of the page.
There was a big round, solid score of 80. Not bad, but not as great as some might have wanted. And when I looked to see what the pros and cons were, I noticed something rather ironic under “plus”. It was one word: “pretty”. And this is after so many people have criticised the game for not being graphically up to snuff. I could only chuckle at that. Under “minus”, there was nothing; just a blank space. Once again, I found this kind of hard to believe, as critics who have played the game and previewed it have had a lot of nasty stuff to say about it – particularly the Xbox 360 version of the game, with persistent framerate issues and the like.
I think this was likely the reason I dreamt about DNF last night, after going through all my RSS feeds, picking up on the latest chicken scratch, and sh!t-talking on DNF. Whether the game does suck or not, I know that I’m going to get it and play it. I have to, since it’s really the only game that I’ve ever truly wanted for half my life (Half-Life? Get it?).