Hold On Daddy, Hold On Mom: Bombshell Delayed

3D Realms and Interceptor Entertainment never will get to make Duke Nukem Mass Destruction, we can finally say with certainity now that lawsuit’s settled, but they appeared to have accepted this years before anyway. The twin-stick shooter was seemingly reborn as Bombshell [official site], an awfully similar-looking game with that flattoped buffoon swapped out for a lady also brimming with rude ‘tude and one-liners. Bombshell was due this autumn, but Interceptor have now announced it needs a little more work and so Shelly ‘Bombshell’ Harrison will be riding out on January 29th, 2016. Oh, and it’s getting an FPS prequel next year too.

The FPS prequel is mostly a mystery for now, other than the fact that it’s made in ye olde Build Engine – as seen in Duke Nukem 3D. Onto the delay!

“Over the last several weeks, we’ve been exhaustively testing Bombshell to get it ready for ship. Unfortunately, and honestly, the game isn’t entirely bug free at this point. Our first instinct was to just get this puppy out-the-door, and that we could fix the remaining issues with a quick patch after launch. But within ten seconds we realized that’s no way to treat paying fans of our games,” Interceptor head honch Frederik Schreiber said in the announcement.

“As painful as this is to say, we’ve made the command decision to move our release date out a bit. This will give us the time to polish the game that we know you all deserve, and the team here is raring to put in the hours necessary and get sh*t done!”

Technically Bombshell is being made by Interceptor and published by 3D Realms, but Interceptor also own 3D Realms nowadays. The folks who started out with a Duke Nukem 3D fan remake now get to wear their idols’ clothes whenever they like.

Anyway, here’s a Bombshell gameplay video from back in August, showing a boss battle with a whole lot of Shelly being knocked down onto her bumshell:


  1. FreeTom says:

    That is an excellent gun.

  2. haldolium says:

    I am still surprised they use such an outdated build of the UE3. Not that it matters too much when the game is fun (which is hard to tell, so far it doesn’t look that interesting to me) but it still makes me wonder why it’s visually on pair with first generation UE3 games instead of at least offering some refinements from the later development of that engine, which are still years old.

    • iainl says:

      Given the shocking, unholy, legendary mess 3D Realms got themselves in by constantly trying to keep up with engine development before, I’m not surprised in the least.

      • haldolium says:

        Ha. Yeah that thought has crossed my mind as well… although I was thinking that there might be only the company name left, not (all) the people involved in the past mess.

    • king0zymandias says:

      Look, the game isn’t ugly because they engine is old. The game is ugly because the assets (models, textures, animations) are poorly done and the art direction is inconsistent and bad. Here’s the thing, art assets for a game are not created in the engine, they are created within 3d content creation apps like Maya, Zbrush and such. After they are created they are then exported to the game engine for assembly and level layout. You can take the assets from this game and pipe them into the latest version of Unreal, it will still look like crap. Physically based shaders are irrelevant when your textures are wrong and ugly to begin with.

      • haldolium says:

        Yeah well, I don’t really think that the issue is within the actual assets (although feel free to point out stuff you think are a mistake) but in the lack of image depth due to outdated/unrefined lighting and postprocessing. As with HDR photography, and many UE3 titles of the past, the image is extremely flat due to no distinction between forground, middle- and background. I dont really see any issue with the textures or the lack of “PBR” there, but with the aforementioned lighting and post mostly. Quite a few older UE3 games suffered from the same, for example both Transformers games (which nevertheless are very well done and quite the fun imo).

        This really isn’t an asset issue, which seems to be on the level of what can be expected of a low-medium budget production, formerly known as “AA”.

        • king0zymandias says:

          “As with HDR photography, and many UE3 titles of the past, the image is extremely flat due to no distinction between forground, middle- and background.”

          What you are perceiving is in no way an engine limitation, it’s bad art direction. Nothing has been added to the lighting pipeline of the new Unreal engine from Unreal 3 that would change how the game looks, except maybe PBR, but that wouldn’t have any affect until they completely redid all the textures from the ground up. Here they are using a single Directional light and an ambient light, as is par for the course for most games of the top down nature. And the way that works is the way it has always worked, there’s no magic there, there’s no great evolution that has happened in the last few years to change the way a game with a single directional light, ambient light and baked ambient occlusion looks.

          Games these days look better because they have better sculpted models with more details, better textures and art direction. This on the other hand looks bad to you because you dislike the color palette/art direction/concept, which I suppose reminds you of AA titles of the past, which is fair enough. But what I am trying to get to you is that take my word for it, the look of the game isn’t being limited by the lighting limitations of the engine at all. Once again you can take all the assets of a modern game that you think looks pretty, and plug it in Unreal Engine 3, and it will look indistinguishable to you from it’s original form. There will be some difference in the specular reflection model, but nothing gamers will notice.

  3. int says:

    Few things I hate more in trailers than the momentum-breaking abomination that is the “slomo, or pause item-wheel”.
    I assume, and hope you can also instantly select weapons with the number keys, like we did in the long long ago.

  4. ansionnach says:

    The enemies here look pretty cool but the encounter design seems lacking: they’re just big monsters that run about after you, swiping with their weapons and firing. Doesn’t look like there are any patterns – they’re just giant walking health bars… and she finishes it off in a non-interactive bit.

    There really should be multiplayer in a game like this. Co-op on a single machine could make it worth a go.

  5. Michael Fogg says:

    I’m actually curious about the Build-engine thing. I’ve been anticipating some kind of reemergence of the old 2.5D tech on the indie side of things for a while now, with good hi-res sprite work you could create fairly convincing and well-furnished spaces without having to painstakingly 3d-model everything.

    • AriochRN says:

      That piqued my interest too – the only level I’ve ever made for a game was using Duke 3D (a Syndicate Wars style city block) because Build had an easy interface. I’d love to see something in the style of Bernband, or perhaps a less pap version of The Shat’s TekWar.

    • ansionnach says:

      There’s a fan-made Duke Nukem Forever that uses the Build engine. Was released in 2013. Didn’t play it much but it’s free.

  6. sharpmath says:

    Love the “Cherry Bomb” reference. So great :D