Duke Nukem is the explosive debut of the known universe's greatest high-flying, wise-cracking, alien-punching, babe-saving, gun-toting badass. A man who would eventually go on to become a one of a kind gaming action hero that would soon combine ass-kicking and bubblegum-chewing in a completely revolutionary way. Duke begins here.
User reviews: Very Positive (130 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 1, 1991
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Packages that include this game

Buy The Duke Nukem Platformer Pack

Includes 3 items: Duke Nukem, Duke Nukem 2, Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project

 

About This Game

Duke Nukem is the explosive debut of the known universe's greatest high-flying, wise-cracking, alien-punching, babe-saving, gun-toting badass. A man who would eventually go on to become a one of a kind gaming action hero that would soon combine ass-kicking and bubblegum-chewing in a completely revolutionary way. Duke begins here.

In a world ravaged by Dr. Proton’s villainous ambitions, the original video game action hero must rise against the evil scientist’s army of sinister Techbots. And although Duke isn’t exactly what the Doctor ordered, he’s exactly what the world needed.

Key Features:

  • Back with the Boot: Delve into Duke’s debut in this re-release of the 1991 classic 2D sidescroller, adapted to run on modern computers.
  • So Old, It’s New Again: Animated characters, huge levels, four-way scrolling levels and blockbuster cinematics make for a 1991 experience that was so ahead of its time, it’s like playing a game made in 1994.
  • The Atomic Pistol: With collectible upgrades, the unstoppable Atomic Pistol is the only gun Duke will ever need.
  • Bring Backup: Unlimited continues, built-in hints, cheat mode and more ensures that Duke has what it takes to get the job done.
  • The King of Action: Drinks soda. Eats turkey. It’s Duke Nukem, baby!

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows XP
    • Processor:1.8 GHz
    • Memory:512 MB RAM
    • Graphics:Direct X Compatible GPU
    • Hard Drive:7 MB HD space
    • Sound:All sound is PC speaker
    • Additional:If you can't run this game, you might need to upgrade your Atomic Toaster
    Minimum:
    • OS:OSX 10.6.8 or later
    • Processor:Intel Core Duo 2GHz+
    • Memory:1 MB RAM
    • Graphics:64MB Video memory
    • Hard Drive:7 MB HD space
    • Sound:All sound is PC Speaker
Helpful customer reviews
9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2014
A classic for the time, Duke 1 has definitely shown its age. But that doesn't mean you won't have some fun with it, especially if you're a classic DOS gamer or just like the Duke a lot. If you're not a fan of the PC speaker though, this might not be your game.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 8
Duke Nukem had proven that even if you wore pink and watched Oprah you could still kick alien ♥♥♥.

This was one of my all time favorite side scrollers from the MSDOS days (I think I still have it on some floppies somewhere!) Right along side Cosmo's Cosmic Adventure and Jazz Jackrabbit (the DOS version, not the ♥♥♥♥♥♥ GameBoy version).

A true classic to remember.
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12 of 18 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: April 1
I am writing this review as someone who doesn't really have any attachment to Duke Nukem, I never played the games when they first came out all those years ago, so this may sway my review.

The game is extremly dated and doesn't really stand the test of time very well at all. There is no background music to any of the levels, just the 8 bit noise of you walking which is all you'll be hearing while playing so it gets very tedious very quickly.

I did enjoy the level design, there is a lot of back and forth on each level in order to unlock doors and find keys in order to move to the next stage. The enemies don't really vary that much, they all pretty much die in one shot of your gun. I would of liked to see more story in the game but I suppose you can't ask too much for a game this old.

Back when this game originally came out, I am sure this would of been amazing to play, however now, it's not good. Maybe if you are a huge fan of Duke Nukem, you'll enjoy it, but you will have probably played it when it first came out in that case anyway. Newbies are better off playing something else.

Sorry Duke :(
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2014
Duke, the kick-butt action hero we all know today, makes his first debut in this title: Duke Nukem (sometimes referred to as Nukum in the game itself.) Sadly, with quite a few less one-liners.

Gameplay:
In Duke's first outing, he partakes in some action platforming similar to that of the original Commander Keen, focusing heavily on jumping and shooting through sets of levels divided into episodes. However, unlike Commander Keen, Duke's blaster has an infinite amount of ammunition and can be upgraded, as well as having no lives system, but rather a health system. I personally like this setup better because it allows for more exploration of the levels, faster gameplay, and is overall more enjoyable, I never have to worry about that ONE hit I might take from a flying enemy and have to restart the whole level with one less life. Duke was known for his run-and-gun action rather than precision platforming, and this reflects that very well.

But it's not all mindless shooting, sometimes just firing at anything can lead to a penalty in regards to some item pickups. For example, a soda can will refill one health bar and earns 200 points if not shot, but if you do fire, the soda can launches itself upward into the ceiling and explodes. However, if you can manage to pick up the can before it hits something, it will reward you with a heftier 1000 points and no health boost. Little things like these really spice up the gameplay and help prevent it from going stale.

You can also earn character upgrades as you progress through an episode, such as high-jump boots or a grappling hook, as well as upgrade your pistol as to how many shots you can fire at a given time. All of these additions really help the game stand out from just being a more colorful Commander Keen clone.

On controls, they feel much less floaty than Keen did, and felt more responsive and tactile, fit for a more fast-paced game and are another improvement from Keen. Also, the game runs flawlessly in DOSBox.

In regards to the division of episodes, they are all very similar and feature barely any differences, only level designs and some new textures. There is hardly any difficulty increase and the third episode felt shorter than the other two. This is kind of a disappointment looking back on it, but really, I didn't care when playing, the game kept me engaged the whole way through and I never felt that I desired much more. My taste for the game only began to go stale midway through the third episode after playing one very unforgiving and unpleasant level. Otherwise, this never really bothered me.

Graphics:
For a DOS game released mid-1991 using only 16-color EGA graphics, with a three-person graphics team, Duke Nukem looks stellar. Every sprite is detailed and colorful, every animation is fluid (as it can be, really), and hell, what other DOS platformer of the time can you think of succeeded in, or even attempted, water reflection? Duke Nukem does, and to my knowledge there are probably not many. When I first saw my sprite and the background reflecting on the water below me, I was pleasantly surprised. This definitely contrasts with Keen's comparatively bland presentation.

Sound:
Well, like many DOS games of the time, this game has no real soundtrack, only PC Speaker sound effects. To some, the PC Speaker was a real nightmare to the ears, and during gameplay, hearing those lasers hum for longer than five seconds made me want to throw my headphones out the window. But really, you get used to it, or just turn off the sound.

Story:
The story and dialogue here is as basic as something I would write for English in the 4th grade, nothing Shakespeare-level here.

All in all, this is a great DOS platformer, easily the spiritual successor to the original Commander Keen trilogy. I highly recommend anyone to pick it up and it's sequels in the Platformer Pack for $9.99 and have a blast.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 4, 2014
There's not much to say about this platform classic. Despite being somewhat old (therefore having outdated graphics and sound effects), it's still really fun to play it. As for the story, it's pretty basic: Chase and defeat the big boss. Nothing original but still, it's always something satisfying to do. Duke was already a badass back then and he didn't even needed to wear a pair of shades or spit out one of his famous quotes to prove it. Overall, if you're into platformers I'm pretty sure that you're gonna enjoy it.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
16.5 hrs on record
Posted: April 10
guns dont kill people

uh uh


I kill people

with guns
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: March 24
What's to say, you are an awesome dude who can totaly rock bleached blond hair and a pink tank top. You've got to grab your lazer blaster and blast the evil robots to make the world safe for something or other.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 19, 2014
It's the King of Pain Title that Started it all from my DOS Childhood Days! The Original Duke Nukem back & here to stay on Steam! Apogee Software Rocks the MS-DOSBOX!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
9.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 20
Duke Nukem is a early platforming game for your trusty IBM PC and DOS OS that came out in 1991 from Apogee. Or maybe it counts as shoot'em'up genre game. It sure does both, though more of exploring and platforming.

Since it's the old game, how does Steam version work? Simple. It uses DOSBox, which doesn't suck. Once it launches, you can choose any of the three episodes to launch. Game was using Shareware model after all, back when it was cool. It doesn't really use any Steam features though, not even Steam Overlay is supported, beither Steam Cloud saving. So no screenshotting for you.

Duke Nukem 1 was made before Duke Nukem found a new identify in Duke Nukem 3D, so you will not any sexual humor there, just good old platforming shooting hero with his lazer zapper, zap zap zap. He jumps, he shoots, he grins all time, he almost got named Duke Nukum.

The game is quite old and presentation isn't on par. It's a pretty EGA game, meaning that it doesn't look too bad on widescreen monitors. Art-style is cool though, not masterpiece, but it's really pretty for what it is. You will even notice, that like most of platformer games on PC it doesn't have smooth scrolling like Commander Keen does, instead skipping whole tile. Somehow it feels cool as well, there is even a weird thing where things will spawn only when their position appears on the screen. You will mostly notice it when you move up and see a few chests suddenly falling from the top, sometimes used as a trap too. The only cool technical thing it got to show are reflections on floor which is sometimes uses, never seen anything like this in other old PC platformers, which is cool but makes screen more confusing. And jolly little details, like awesome-yet-wacky-retro explosions with rainbow pellets.
As for music and sounds... Welp, PC Speaker. Has sounds. Cool walking sound that isn't annoying. No music, just little jingles. Nothing else to say.

In this game you will have to fight Dr. Proton and his army of robots for over 3 episodes, each with 10 levels of quick fun and exploration. You can jump and you can shoot inifnitively. On some levels you have to destroy reactors (It explodes!) and in every level you get to find keys to open doors to find keys. In each episode you will even find useful items, one allowing Duke Nukem to jump higher, randomly doing Strider-like homersaults, while another allows you to hook up and move over metal celling, reminding me Strider once again. As well as powerups that increase amount of shots that you can spew out otno screen at same time. And yes, this game has sewer level. Once. And many, many robots.
The only difference between 3 episodes are backgrounds, some tile sets and levels themselves, yep. Once you get through the first episode, you will learn everything that game got.
A fun little detail is that sometimes you will encounter a screen through which Dr. Proton will taunt you with a single messages, like claiming that you will be stopped by his army of rabbit robot killers after defeating whole wave of those junks.

And well, it's suprisingly fun for what it is. It actually delivers action that doesn't feel cheap or too hard or broken. Exploration is interesting. A bit repetive, yes, but levels are short and thus you feel like progressing through the game. One of the better things in this game got to be enemies and their variety, at least this was better than I expected. Heck, some enemies even give off a smoke once hit, little details. There is even a chopper enemy that tries to smash you with itself. And they explode nicely. Obstacles like jumping mines. And it all controls really well, quite responsible. Duke Nukem has a big health bar so you will not rage as much as in, say, Commander Keen. It's easy to pick up and play, despite not having level selection.
For some reason, I just had a solid fun with this game and was enjoying it, without setting my mind into "hey, these unfair stuff were standards back then, it's old after all too" mode, beat it in one go pretty much.
Also should note on pickups. There are two kind of healths. The one which becomes even useful when shot, that is turkey. And the one which gets destroyed by shot, that is can of soda. Makes it more interesting.
Though, I do have a complain. Each episode has only one boss at the end of the final level and it's same Dr. Proton. Yes, he doesn't learn any new tricks, the only more challenging changes is that there is less of solid ground without spikes. But you can just rush him down, shooting all you got while taking damage, so it's very easy and dissapointing.

So yes, actually fun somewhat easy old DOS platforming-shooting game. Recommended.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
What a great retro game and a reminder of what gaming used to be!
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2014
You know it's an old game when you click [Y] after pressing escape to quit.
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 30, 2014
Very gud für sich release date. Würde recommend it
Das jahr ist 1991
Miro eklund on ♥♥♥♥♥ruoka
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 30, 2014
Every gamer should buy this game to see where Duke Nukem really started.
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44 of 44 people (100%) found this review helpful
10.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 28, 2014
This game isn't much to look at, but in terms of game play it is solid.

Duke Nukem begins life here with this 1991 action platformer. It was originally released under an old-fashioned concept called Shareware. For games the concept was pretty good; Apogee would release the first episode absolutely free, no obligation. After playing it you could order the game and get all three episodes. Believe it or not the original DOOM was marketed this way too.

The experience of playing through 30 levels of Duke Nukem is a good one. As you can see from all the screen shots on the store page, the player has a health gauge so you won't die from touching the wrong thing only once. The challenge is decent because you can't quick save, you have to do the whole level in one go; saving is only possible between levels. The levels can be long and a bit confusing, but since there are so many goodies hidden all over it really isn't a bother to go exploring if you're lost. At the end of every level it is possible to score up to 7 bonuses. Some examples are: 1) shooting all the cameras in the level, 2) finishing the level without taking damage, and/or 3) picking up the letters D,U,K,E in the correct order. This makes for additional game play challenges if one is so inclined.

The only real problem with this game is that it was originally created for MS-DOS, so Interceptor packaged the game with DOSBox. GOG has been doing this successfully for many years, so it isn't really a problem, but you do have to be prepared for a truly old-school game; no mouse, no joypad, crude sound.

At a time when so many are trying to develop appealing retro-style games, here is a solid game from the era they are trying to capture. I can recommend it based on the fun factor alone.
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28 of 36 people (78%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 20, 2013
The man, the myth, the Duke! The game that started it all. FINALLY ON STEAM!
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15 of 19 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
5.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 24, 2014
The only game where you get to be Oprah's #1 Fan.. and also a pink shirt wearing carrot man.
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10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 3, 2013
A wonderfully-crafted Apogee masterpiece that stands the test of time along with original Commander Keen. Turkey-muching, soda-drinking, and Oprah-watching Duke is still intact, just like I always remembered him.
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15 of 23 people (65%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2013
I quit to DOS and I get this GUI crap... game like its 1991 baby!
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 2, 2014
Duke Nukem (Duke Nukum as defined in the game) is a very old platformer created from the success of Commander Keen. The game more than pleases you with it's charming hue and extensive saturation. The game comes by no means near any standards of gaming today; there's no music, the sound is so minor (sound can actually play from your internal computer's tower if you lack a speaker, yes, the game is so old that that was a thing you could do), the graphics are resemblant to what one would consider "between the NES and SNES generation" and the controls, likely, are styled for older keyboards and times of the past. Now what do I say to cover those issues? Get over it.

Let's not forget this game came out in 1991. For the time, absolutely everything about it was impressive (even today the level design draws attention). Take your mind off the issues of Duke Nukem and enjoy the platforming excellence there is to spot. Hidden areas, lucky loot, surprisingly fun-to-rack-up highscores, somewhat developing storyline (though barely), unique scenarios and difficulty set this game as in my opinion one of the best DOS platformers in existance.

Accept the substitutes or not, Duke Nukem is just slightly less fun than I assume it was in 1991.
10/10
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10 of 15 people (67%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Most people won't even recognize this as a Duke Nukem game, but this was Duke before he went 3D and he was glorious. One of the first PC games I ever played to completion, Duke holds up for me on nostalgia alone. I wish I could give an honest review, but with the history I have with the game, it's impossible for me to be subjective. It's a fantastic game that should be enjoyed by all.
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