Pitchford: DNF Review Scores Won't Matter

Gearbox Software bossman Randy Pitchford recently acknowledged what most of us already suspected over the years: that review scores won't be relevant to Duke Nukem Forever's success. After all, long-time fans who've waited along the sidelines all this time will undoubtedly go out and purchase the game as soon as it goes retail, whether critics love it or loathe it.

Still, Pitchford isn't sure what the reviewers will think, crossing his fingers for a hopeful perfect ten. "I don't know," he said. "I know what I'm feeling when I play the game - it's fun, and at any given moment I can't wait to see the next moment. Honestly, I don't even know how much reviews matter for this particular game. Because, I mean, what we're looking at is the deepest unresolved tension in the entire history of the video game industry. And it's almost historical."

He also said that he'd be surprised to see the game earn a review score down in the 7s. "Fortunately the game's good, I've played it, it's a great game," he said. "You're going to see a range of scores; I'd be surprised to see anything get down into the '7' range, maybe a couple 10s - you're going to get the range there. It really doesn't matter. Anywhere in that range - it's not going to change the results for what we're actually talking about."

According to Pitchford, what really matters is whether the player will be pulled back into the same unique experience they enjoyed in Duke Nukem 3D. However the problem Duke faces now is a genre flooded with clones based on clones based on clones. Duke Nukem 3D brought a unique style of action and wit to the PC back in 1996, an era when the first person shooter genre was still emerging as a permenant alternative to RTS and RPG gaming. Question is, can Duke Nukem do it again fifteen years later?

"What matters is if you have a good time or not, how much the experience [brings] us back [to Duke's former glory] to those of us that remember, how much it introduces to those who weren't there, and how much it tells us about the next experience we want," he said. "That's what really matters, and the scores - that's probably not going to be very relevant to the outcome of this particular game."

Duke Nukem Forever (finally) arrives on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Windows PC on May 3, 2011.

  • TheDuke
    Don't matter what the reviews say
    I'm sure that it will be fun and I will buy even just for the Duke
  • bison88
    I was thinking the same thing over the past couple of weeks. I don't care what the reviews may say, I'm going to buy it because like most we grew up with Duke and turned a lot of us on to the FPS genre. Plus after so many years...you almost have to. The success is guaranteed, the reviews aren't though. I'm sure some of them will be down to earth and honest, others will be paid supporters, and the others just negative Nancy's. I have a strong feeling the long wait times, law suits, studio changes, etc. are GOING to be used by all those who review it, for good or bad you can't look past the length it took and angry reviewers are definitely going to make more use of that argument.
  • joytech22
    Never played the original and I'm still going to buy this game, it just appeals to me in some way.
  • K3vBot6000
    I remember reading about the game in GamePro, EGM, etc. way back and it is funny to think it will actually exist in a few months. Or perhaps the greatest prank of all time and it turns out it doesn't exist.
  • _Cubase_
    Interesting that what started as the biggest debacle in game release history could end up making this the most popular game of recent times... just goes to show that good things never die!
  • icepick314
    joytech22Never played the original and I'm still going to buy this game, it just appeals to me in some way.
    ditto here...

    hopefully someone would be COOL enough to add the original series to the collector's edition release....
  • demonhorde665
    i never pay attention to review scores any way ..

    golden axe beast rider (360): got terrible reviews , mostly for not doing any thing "new" who cares , i palyed the game and loved every minute of it's old schoolhack and slach didn't caret hat the dialouge sucked dialouge is not what the game was ever about '

    conan the barbarian (360): again a game that got piss poor reviews ,stil didnt care , dialouge sucked , but teh game was about old school hack and slash and like golden axe i enjoyed it for what it did do.

    NWN 2: got terible reviews and was actually buggy as hell at release , stil enjoyed the game and sitl play it onien to this day

    point being , i'm nto one to care about what reviews say , ESPECIALLY when they score a game low for not doing any thing new , dubmest reason tos core a game , low , genres are amde because a bunch of gmaes DON"T do any thing different hence why theya re all considered part of teh same genre, if youa re going to score a game low becasue it does nothign new them you might as well say you don't like that genre .

    that said bring on the duke and i dont care if he doesn't do any thing new.
  • joelmartinez
    I always listen to the critics
  • jackt
    True !
  • jj463rd
    joytech22Never played the original and I'm still going to buy this game, it just appeals to me in some way.Well Duke Nukem 3D wasn't the original.The original was a side scrolling game however back in the late DOS era days (windows 95 was common then)Duke Nukem 3D was a must have first person shooter.It was truly incredible and a great way to spend time.
    The graphics were cruder but the game play was superbly excellent better than a lot of modern FPS.