On the 2nd of September, 3D Realms president George Broussard posted a cryptic picture of pigs flying. The reason is now clear. At PAX Prime in Seattle, Gearbox president Randy Pitchford took the stage to announce that his studio has taken over Duke Nukem Forever, which had been in development at the now-all-but-defunct 3D Realms since 1997.
Speaking to a shocked and enthusiastic crowd, Pitchford said, “We can’t let the Duke die, right? The guys at 3D Realms who put their hearts and souls into this, so we wanted to make sure it hits all the platforms. It’s coming to PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC in 2011.”
Pitchford also told the Wall Street Journal that Gearbox took over the game in late 2009, following the quasi-closure of 3D Realms and tit-for-tat lawsuits between 3D Realms and Duken Nukem Forever publisher Take-Two Interactive.
“Clearly the game hadn’t been finished at 3D Realms but a lot of content had been created,” Pitchford told the Journal. “The approach and investment and process at 3D Realms didn’t quite make it and it cracked at the end. With Gearbox Software we brought all those pieces together. It’s the game it was meant to be.”