In this fourth part, I will shred light on what happened, with Duke Nukem Reloaded. The journey to U.S.A was very interesting, but the result of the Gearbox presentation, was not exactly as expected. We didn’t get a clear answer of what was going to happen with Duke Nukem Reloaded, or what we were going to do next.
Gearbox was extremely impressed by the work we have done. The problem was that it was far beyond a simple texture overhaul of the original.
This was a full AAA re-envisioning.
When I came back to Denmark, I had a meeting with my team. We quickly made a decision, that we wanted to continue working on the project.
After all, Gearbox were very impressed. So of course the future of Reloaded was secure. Right?
Unfortunately, we were wrong.
A couple of months went, and I had a very hard time communicating with Gearbox. We wanted to get an answer. What was going to happen with the project?
I didnt want my team to keep working on a project, which future wasn’t secure. Once every second week, I reached out for my contact at Gearbox Software, and addressed how important it was to get a conclusion. I had a 30+ man team, standing by.
After waiting almost 3 months for a definite answer, our patience had expired.
Gearbox have 100% control over everything related to Duke Nukem. Without their “GO” or a license, you are not allowed to create anything related to Duke Nukem. Gearbox owned everything related to Reloaded, from a legal perspective. So without a definite decision from their part, we couldn’t do anything but wait.
Finally I got a call from Gearbox Software in September. I don’t want to quote specifics, since those calls are confidential.
And unfortunately, the result of the conversation, was not what we were hoping for.
After the call we were required to pull all media related to Reloaded, from our website and Facebook.
So my primary questions were the following: What were we supposed to do? Cancel the project? Would Gearbox going to allow us to release it sometime in the future?
I could in no way, justify having my team spend so much time on a project like this – Even working full time on the project, without knowing if it was ever going to see the light of the day.
So i asked them one simple question – Would they ever going to plan on letting us release or share media from Reloaded?
Unfortunately they couldn’t give us an answer to that. Ofcourse we could keep working on it, if we wanted to.
But they couldn’t tell us if they would allow the game to be released.
I did the only reasonable thing i could do, and told them the following:
I have spent a year in total on this project. Ever single day, working full time. For free. And so have most of my team members. I have spent my life savings on this project.
I can in no way justify having them continue working on this project, if you don’t want to see it getting released. So I’m afraid i have to put the project on hold, until you can give us a definite answer.
Last but not least, I wanted to tell the fans the story of what really happened.
Let me make it clear – It was OUR OWN decision to put it on hold. But i think we were in a position where we basically had no choice.
The following day we wanted to post the news on our website. Gearbox Software and I cooperated in the creation of the News post.
I got a message by email, which I afterwards posted on our website:
After careful consideration of the progress and direction of the project, Interceptor Entertainment has decided to finish Duke Nukem: Reloaded at a future date that is yet to be determined.
Interceptor Entertainment still has the good will and non commercial license provided to us to use the Duke Nukem brand for our creative ambitions. We hope to resume that work again when the time is right.
In the interim, please know that the praise and support we received for our efforts has been both overwhelming and appreciated. Interceptor Entertainment looks forward to revisiting the DNR project in the future, along with several other new, creative pursuits. Our fans can rest assured: We are going to focus our efforts on exciting endeavors and we welcome the challenges that await us!
With sincere gratitude to our fans for their incredible support,
And that was the end of the Duke Nukem Reloaded project.
So what happened next? The following months everything changed drastically. A lot of amazing things happened, which put us in a much better position, than when were working with Gearbox. Today we are an established studio, working on 2 commercial AAA titles, and things have never been better.
Check out the last and final part of the story, in the next blog!
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