Lawsuits dropped: Duke Nukem belongs to Gearbox

Duke Nukem has avoided his day in court, as Gearbox Software, 3D Realms and Interceptor Entertainment voluntarily end all litigation between the companies. It took more than a year, but the three companies have resolved their differences and released statements explaining what’s going on.

Short version:

Gearbox Software has voluntarily ended its litigation against Interceptor Entertainment and 3D Realms, and wishes to keep the terms of its settlement confidential except to confirm that Gearbox Software is the full and rightful owner of the Duke Nukem franchise.

Duke Nukem Forever

Duke Nukem Forever

The lawsuit, remember, is over 3D Realms and Interceptor‘s attempts to create a new Duke Nukem game while Gearbox held the rights to the character.

Mike Nielsen, CEO of 3D Realms, explains that development on Duke Nukem Mass Destruction (also known as Duke Nukem Survivor) was done “in good faith”, with the team unaware of any conflict over Interceptor acquiring the license.

We never intended to cause any harm to Gearbox or Duke, which is why we immediately ceased development after Gearbox reached out. To secure the future of Duke, 3D Realms has agreed with Gearbox that a single home serves the IP best. And as big Duke fans, we’re excited to see what Gearbox has in store for the ‘King.’

Frederik Schreiber, President at Interceptor has taken the opportunity to explain his history with Gearbox – and with Duke Nukem – confessing that it was his decision to “pull the plug” on Duke Nukem Reloaded.

I decided to cease production of Reloaded in 2011 to establish Interceptor and work on Rise of the Triad … even though we were fully allowed to continue development. I respect Gearbox for supporting a young developer, and I’m glad we can now put this behind us.

Nielsen and Schreiber are quick to point out that 3DR and Interceptor are not sitting idly by. The teams are working on a new game, Bombshell. Any resemblance between the game and a female Duke Nukem is purely coincidental, of course.

For his part, Gearbox Software president Randy Pitchford offers his support and best wishes to Interceptor and 3DR:

As someone who was part of the 3D Realms team when Bombshell was first imagined, I am excited to see what they have in store for us with their game.

The full statements have been published online.

For more information about Bombshell, check out the Player Attack interview with Frederik Schreiber from E3 – including some juicy details about Shelly’s weaponry. The game’s due out a little later this year.

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