RPS Demands: We Want Keen DLC For Rage

*artists impression
It’s a simple enough demand, I think. Yes, id, we’ve been increasingly impressed with the constant trickle of promotional trailers you’ve put out for Rage over recent months, and you’ve proven that Mr. Carmack is fully capable of talking the talk. But are you big enough to take on outside feedback? Will you listen to our plea? We think it’s about time for the Commander to return to our screens, and some form of DLC for Rage seems like the perfect opportunity.

For those not in the know, Commander Keen is a series of platformers from id’s early years. Commander Keen was a badass, pogo-stick jumping, 8 year old genius, and he goes on crazy adventures around space. It was whilst developing the Commander Keen series that id first fell in love with colour coded keycard hunting, which went on to be a staple feature of their early shooters. They’re available on Steam, for a bit of spare change.

Keen may have, er, shown his face during Doom 2, but I want to see what he’s been up to since then. I’m not too fussed about how the DLC works, maybe we could just have his old spaceship converted into a car for driving around the wasteland? Perhaps you can track down a cache of his old weapons? Or Maybe we could have Commander Keen turn up as a wingman? If he was 8 years old when the first game came out in 1990, and somehow he managed to survive the apocalypse, he’d be around 47 by the time Rage takes place in 2029.

I want more Keen, and I’m not too sure id would dedicate the kind of time it takes them to produce games these days working on a brand new Commander Keen game. And even if they did, I don’t think I could stomach another FPR (that’s First Person Reboot). Rage DLC seems like the best chance id will have to revisit this franchise any time soon, and I can’t stand idly by and let them miss the boat. This is his moment.

Are you aboard the Keen Campaign, readers?


  1. Tulse says:

    Uh… okay.
    Is it just me or has the general output RPS seemed a little more deranged than usual this week?

  2. 9of9 says:

    Yes. We are long overdue for Keen-revival. Perhaps you’d run into his spaceship crashed somewhere in the wasteland?

    Tulse: It’s probably the full moon.

    • Luke says:

      Maybe he needs a replacement vacuum cleaner to fix his ships engines :P

    • Gabbo says:

      That idea has fetch quest written all over it, and I would enjoy it thoroughly.
      If it lead to him pogo’ing back into our gaming-lives, all the better.

  3. Teddy Leach says:

    EDIT: Never mind, I’m too ill to make jokes.

  4. SpinalJack says:

    Here’s the doom screenshot if the link doesn’t work for you:

    link to en.wikipedia.org

  5. Unaco says:

    Project Shadowlands.

    Don’t know if it’s still ‘alive’ though.

  6. limbclock says:

    I support this noble endeavor with 110% of my cockles of my heart(s)

  7. AbyssUK says:

    Dopefish lives!

  8. Lambchops says:

    I’d much prefer the 3D Keen action adventure I’ve wistfully desired for years. I’ve always thought it would be fun to bounce around a wonderful alien world on a pogo stick shooting a laser gun at the wildlife.

    Alternatively they could go down the evil vegetable route of Commander Keen in Dreams.

  9. Caribou says:

    perhaps some kind of post-apocalyptic pogo stick to traverse the wasteland. covered in spikes. AND GUNS.

    Seriously though we need more games with pogo sticks.

  10. Darkelp says:

    I’m Commander Keen, and this is my favourite post on the RPS.

  11. LionsPhil says:

    I approve of this sillyness.

  12. Bob says:

    ID Presents,
    Rage: We’re Mildly Upset; DLC featuring Commander Keen. Pre order now and a pogo stick will appear in your Steam inventory.

  13. ArtyFishal says:

    With no irony I would pay real money to be able to play a new game featuring Commander Keen. I want this to really happen.

    • Icarus says:


    • Xercies says:

      A 3d platformer would do nicely I think

    • enobayram says:

      I want a keen FPS, where there are no menu elements. You do everything by talking to people in first person mode in a base. “New game” should be a conversation option, as well as the individual elements of the options menu. For instance, I would like to say, “please change the resolution to 1900×1080” to an in-game character to change the resolution. Then he should reply “oh god, you’re awesome, I’m changing the resolution right away.” Also, in the game, there should be one button only, and that would bring up a scene where I’m conversing with an in-game character. I should tell him “I would like to fire my gun.” and he should reply “You’re so cool” and the gun should fire. Some soon to be released re-makes really increased my expectations of re-makes.

  14. Turin Turambar says:

    I always liked Commander Keen 4 more than say… Super Mario.

    So a FUCK YES! from me.

  15. Necroscope says:

    Commander Keen is a beloved oldschool game that has yet to be remade into an FPS….perhaps ID could update it as a platformer for mobile devices ? :)

  16. puaemerson says:

    Where’s my Commander Keen MMO?

  17. Christian O. says:

    Come on, he’s an accomplished badass AND the grandson of BJ Blazkowicz – don’t deny the fans the opportunity to see him again!

  18. Gundrea says:

    I think Keen would benefit from an FPS reboot. It’d be like Mirror’s Edge with pogo sticks and a ray gun.

  19. kikito says:

    I would kill him just to steal his helmet.

  20. hermpesaurusrex says:

    lol, Keen was one of the first games I ever played. I still love loading it up to challenge that infamous space dog and those hamburger looking martians. POGO!!

  21. fwfulton says:

    Keen Rocks, Long Live the Keen, Please!

  22. Koozer says:

    Personally I want to see Jazz Jackrabbit in the next Unreal Tournament. If they ever bother with another UT T_T

    • LionsPhil says:

      Given CliffyB’s current predilictions, I fear he’d end up cowering behind chest-high walls.

  23. vodka and cookies says:

    Tom Hall was instrumental in Commander Keen, after he left there wasn’t much interest in it at iD that’s why there have been no more Keen games.

    A DLC skin is about the best you could hope for, also joking aside no remake would be an FPS it would be a TPP (third person platformer) essentially take Rachet & Clank reskin it and you got your modern Commander Keen game.

    • bluebottle says:

      Got to agree with that. Keen without Tom Hall just wouldn’t be the same.

      I’d love to see Id throw a bit of cash Tom’s way and get him to put together a little Keen title. No radical reinterpretation or reboot, just a nice little addition to the Keen series. I could easily see that making money on Steam, X-box live, heck even the DS.

      Last I heard Hall was still in the business, and not shackled to some big developer, either.

    • MD says:

      Seriously, if they just made another 2D Keen game in the style of Keens 1-3,* I would buy it and I reckon a bunch of other people would too. Development costs would be miniscule by modern standards, and the potential audience must be pretty large once you factor in all the impulse buyers on steam. Price it at $10 then have a 50% off weekend sale, and bam! Tit job. Modest profits. (If you can somehow get Valve to tie it in to a TF2 hat promotion, you’ll sell about a billion copies.)

      *edit: I know the other Keens were 2D too, but I prefer the visual style of the earlier games! I also reckon it’d be more suited to small-screen platforms like the iPhone, which seem an obvious destination for a 2D platformer.

    • IDtenT says:

      I was just about to say: “Not without Tom Hall, you don’t.”

      Honestly though, I’d much prefer it if he worked on an Anachronox sequel than Keen.

  24. jokomul says:

    Commander Keen is my favorite game. Of all time. It’s the first game I ever played when I was 5 I think. Put Commander Keen in any game (except CoD) and I’m totally fine with it :)

    Also, I’m all for a secret epic Dopefish battle.

  25. Rikard Peterson says:

    “I want to see what he’s been up to since [Doom 2]” – take another look at that screenshot, and you might figure out why you haven’t heard from him.

  26. sana says:

    I know the Commander because he’s my pal. Don’t think you know something about the Commander.

  27. dadioflex says:

    Where’s the petition for me to sign?

  28. Chaddicus says:

    I am all for more Keen.

  29. BathroomCitizen says:

    This post feels right.

  30. Araxiel says:

    I also demand that the DLC contains a giant potatoe king!

  31. Nallen says:

    Comes with Pogo Stick for the Scout!

  32. MadTinkerer says:

    I am absolutely on board with this.

  33. Srethron says:

    I support this call for more Commander Keen. Running across the Dopefish homage in Deus Ex: HR got me all nostalgic. Tom Hall is the (forgotten) man.

  34. Hyperion says:

    Very much so. Though I remember Tom Hall saying that someone else has the rights to commander keen(?). I think I played CK more than I have ever played super mario bros back then.

  35. bill says:

    Not in Rage, but i’d love a new Keen game…

    it’s the closest we’ve come to a Calvin (without Hobbes) game…

  36. Ankheg says:

    Really, it’s like dopefish has outlived everything.

  37. Ralphomon says:

    Any game with a spaceship called the Bean-With-Bacon Megarocket is OK with me.