Apogee, which also went through 3D Realms at the same time, published several successful and super-influential games, but is best known for its biggest disaster: the 15-year development of Duke Nukem Forever, which was eventually completed by Gearbox. After pictures of a building from 2001 of the game was leaked this week, Apogee co-founders Scott Miller and George Broussard opened up a little bit about what “killed the original 3D Realms” – and former high school friends are pointing the finger at each other.
Miller, who recently resumed publishing games under the Apogee name, said in a brief blog post today he didn’t work on the Duke Nukem Forever project, but as a co-owner of the company, he had “a good look at the problems” that turned it into a “money pit”. These problems, Miller claims, were that the studio was “understaffed by at least 50%”, didn’t have “a good development roadmap”, and kept restarting the game to switch to new 3D technology, “causing massive delays over and over again.” . .”
Unsurprisingly, engine swaps were an issue – this is a game that started on the Quake 2 engine in 1997 and didn’t release until 2011 – and a quagmire on the scale of Duke Nukem Forever seems impossible to explain without the other things being at least partially true. But how did they happen? Miller does not assume responsibility.
He doesn’t explicitly assign blame either, but Broussard, who also owned Apogee and ran Duke Nukem Forever until Gearbox took over, is the obvious target. Broussard had a few things to say about Miller in response.
“Mind blowing nonsense [Miller] vomit”, broussard wrote on twitter. “It’s not surprising given its depth of manipulation and narcissism. [At] at least I had the class to keep thoughts private.
“I have a lot more to say about it having known him since high school in the ’70s. You can see how he uses the opportunity to try to look his best by playing a former friend (over 40) and business partner underneath a bus. Define a guy you want to do business with!”
Scott is a clueless narcissist whose actions are what led to the Gearbox suits/friction that led to us losing 3DR and Duke IP. Mind exploding the nonsense he spews. Not surprising given their depth of manipulation and narcissism. At least I had the class to keep thoughts private. https://t.co/7MneAzlDXfMay 10, 2022
Broussard claims Miller is to blame for Apogee’s 2010 sale of Duke Nukem rights to Gearbox in 2010, pointing to lawsuits between the companies, of which there were some. However, Gearbox was already in control of Duke Nukem before the first 3D Realms Process I’m aware so it’s not clear what Broussard means. He declined to clarify, and current Apogee Entertainment has yet to respond to a request for a response from Miller.
Prior to Miller’s blog post, Broussard confirmed that the leaked footage from Duke Nukem Forever is real. but said that he’s “not really interested in talking about it or retreading a painful past”.
A slightly interesting detail revealed by Miller’s post is that developer Digital Extremes was, according to him, eager to take over development on Duke Nukem Forever in 2004, but the idea was “abandoned” by others in 3D Realms.
Bullshit aside, I’m curious what would have happened if Digital Extremes had actually taken over and completed Duke Nukem Forever in the mid-2000s. Would you have made Warframe? Would Duke Nukem still be a popular series today? And would that have made the world better or worse?
While Miller doesn’t consider the current 3D Realms incarnation to be the true heir to the Apogee bloodline (the name is currently owned by the Embracer Group, which also owns Gearbox), he says he hopes Duke will return under its new owners. someday.
“It seems that the obvious move would be [for Gearbox] to recreate Duke Nukem 3D using Unreal 5,” he said. “And if it goes well, then start doing more Duke adventures while also expanding the universe with new characters.”