I realize I'm a bit tardy in bringing this to you, but I wanted to make sure that the corpse of Duke Nukem was officially, finally moldering in the ground before I told you all about it.
Here's the story so far:
April 1997: Duke Nukem Forever, the sequel to Duke Nukem 3D is first announced. It was characterized alternately as the next big thing in gaming, the second coming of Christ, and your first sexual experience.
November 1997: The first screenshots from DNF are released. The world pees itself in anticipation.
June 1998: DNF developer 3D Realms reveals that DNF would switch to the Unreal Engine. Despite claims that this would not delay the game's release, fans begin to worry.
December 1998: 3D Realms claims DNF would see release in 2000.
1999: DNF again switches engines, this time to the latest version of the Unreal Engine. Cue more worrying.
December 2000: 3D Realms claims DNF would see release in 2001.
May 2001: 3D Realms releases footage of the game, revealing the game's Las Vegas setting. More peeing, fans still eagerly await the game.
2002: DNF's engine technology is completely reworked. 95 percent of the game's assets are scrapped in the process. Fans sigh, take up drinking to cope with the wait.
May 2003: Publisher Take-Two Interactive says the game will not see release during 2003. DNF producer George Broussard tells Take-Two to shut the fuck up. Take-Two stands by its claims, despite Broussard's childish swears.
September 2004: 3D Realms dumps original DNF physics engine, and switches all their work over to a custom engine developed by a company called Meqon.
Later in September 2004: DNF jumps to the DOOM 3 engine. Fans pee their pants in rage.
April 2006: DNF is demoed for members of the press. An audible, yet hopeful "meh" is heard 'round the Internet.
June 2006: Take-Two offers 3D Realms a $500,000 bonus if they can have DNF on store shelves by the end of the year.
August 2006: Several members of the DNF dev team leave 3D Realms, presumably in a bid to sign on with a company actually planning to release their work.
2007: New screenshots from DNF are released, offering hope to whoever still cared about the game.
February 2008: Programmer Scott Miller confirms a 2008 release date for DNF, more than a decade after it was first announced. The Internet scratches its collective head, struggling vainly to remember what DNF is.
June 2008: In-game footage is revealed on the Jace Hall Show. One guy in Kansas smiles weakly, before clocking in for work at the local Blockbuster Video.
September 2008: Two new screenshots are revealed alongside the Xbox Live Arcade version of Duke Nukem 3D.
May 6, 2009: 3D Realms is shuttered, crushing all hopes of anyone ever playing DNF.
And that brings us to the present. Take-Two is suing 3D Realms for breach of contract, America's economy is in shambles (arguably due to a lack of Duke Nukem to bolster national morale), and I'm writing this blog post to chronicle the whole thing.
Odds are we won't ever see Duke Nukem Forever on store shelves, but if we do I preemptively rescind any of the insults I've written here, and offer the game a perfect score — if only to urge 3D Realms to finish the fucking thing.