Duke Nukem For-Never? 3D Realms Shutting Down

Is Duke Nukem Forever developer 3D Realms finally shuttering? Seems like it. Game On just received a somewhat cryptic form-email from development studios Deep Silver and Apogee Entertainment (a legal alias for 3D Realms) stating, simply, that "Deep Silver and Apogee Software are not affected by the situation at 3D Realms" and that "Development on the Duke Nukem Trilogy is continuing as planned." No further details were offered, or reference made to what the "situation at 3D Realms" actually is.

Judging from the anonymous scuttlebutt ping-ponging around the blogosphere, the "situation" is apparently that development studio 3D Realms — founded in 1987 and the guys responsible for the irreverent Duke Nukem series — is shutting down. It seems an anonymous source pinged Kotaku and Shacknews to deliver the not-really-bombshell news that the studio is closing due to funding issues, and that employees at 3D Realms as well as Apogee have already seen pink slips.

Not-really-bombshell? Duke Nukem Forever was originally announced in 1997. It's 2009. You do the math. I loved the original Duke Nukem 3D, but I've been tired of this particular shell game for awhile. I've never seen a company get so much unnecessary press for delivering absolutely nothing. The real tragedy here is if course the part where a bunch more folks are probably out of a job in a crap economy.

Phone calls and emails to the company and its public relations minions are yielding the usual "no comment" runaround. No surprise. If you still actually care about this game — I don't and honestly haven't for years — then you'll want to monitor the usual gossip sites, or potential info-dribbles like 3D Realms (current? former?) honcho George Broussard's Twitter feed.

Update: Joe Siegler, 3D Realms' Webmaster, says of the shutdown that "It's true," but that he has "nothing further to say at this time."

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