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20 heroes who deserve better games

Yes, Duke Nukem 3D was an awesome shooter for its time, and it holds up surprisingly well today. And no, Duke Nukem Forever never really got a chance to shine.

Above: Oh, what might have been

Between those two titles, though, Duke has starred in no fewer than five complete games (not counting cell-phone games or the re-releases of DN3D), and none of them were very good.

Above: Planet of the Babes was one of them

True, there aren’t really a lot of places a cigar-chomping, stripper-rescuing parody of a game hero can go that he hasn’t been already, and he might even be a little out of his depth in the modern game market. With the right mix of action and wry meathead humor behind him, though, that probably wouldn’t matter. He isn’t completely out of the picture, either; even after the cancellation of Forever, publisher Apogee has vowed to bring him back in a trilogy of handheld games. We don’t have any idea if those will actually be any good, but at the very least they’ll probably be better than Duke’s run of crap/nonexistent games.

After graduating from college in 2000 with a BA in journalism, I worked for five years as a copy editor, page designer and videogame-review columnist at a couple of mid-sized newspapers you've never heard of. My column eventually got me a freelancing gig with GMR magazine, which folded a few months later. I was hired on full-time by GamesRadar in late 2005, and have since been paid actual money to write silly articles about lovable blobs.