Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition Hands-On – Put Up Your Dukes

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If you’re into crazy first-person shooters, then chances are you’ve already discovered Bulletstorm, People Can Fly’s over-the-top extravaganza of stylish violence and ridiculous storytelling. If you missed it, though, you’ll get a second chance at redemption, as the game is headed to Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC with a new Full Clip Edition that features all sorts of cool goodies, including additional Echo maps for survival battles, as well as a bumped-up frame rate.

With today’s hands-on, though, we decided to focus on a key element that plays a part in the game’s pre-order program – being able to play as Duke Nukem in the game. Yep, People Can Fly, alongside the game publishers at Gearbox Software, have opted to throw in the iconic shooter star in the proceedings, and – surprise! – he actually fits pretty damn well into everything.

The mission that we got our hands on with the beginning of the second stage, right before we get introduced to the mechanical behemoth Waggleton P. Tallylicker. (Yes, that’s his damn name.) We join Duke, filling in for the usual hero, alongside the resurrected Ishi as they attempt to track down a mysterious female, who is more than capable of holding her own against the marauders.

Now, if you’ve played this stage before, you more than likely know the chaos you can create, from kicking around explosive devices to slugging down a couple bottles of alcohol, which blurs your vision temporarily as a result. It’s funny, but Duke fits right in with all this, with Jon St. John (the iconic voice of the character) voicing all the lines and feeling right at home. In fact, when the girl in question yells, “I will kill your dick!”, Duke, in full fashion, responds, “Is that a come-on?”

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As for how the game plays, that hasn’t changed a bit – this is still vintage Bulletstorm, and changing it to Duke’s style of play would be nothing short of a travesty. But People Can Fly knows what works, and the game handles beautifully, especially when you start chaining together stylish kills, like kicking a couple of guys into large cacti (“Pricked”) or sending them flying into electrical appliances and lines (“Shocked”). These still remain a large part of the game, and they haven’t lost any of their momentum in the translation.

But the graphics have, and wow. It looks stunning running at 60 frames per second, with retouched environments that really show you how chaotic the world gets, plenty of slick tricks to execute (like the slide kick, perfect for sending a maroon careening over the side of a mountain), and great explosions that rock the screen. We have yet to see bigger moments in the game happening – like a dinosaur-style creature bursting out of the side of a mountain or, better yet, that Killwheel – but we will soon enough.

The fact that People Can Fly is making this kind of effort, alongside Gearbox, is truly a feat, as it’ll give the game a second chance at retail while, at the same time, making it the best it’s ever been. Plus, the fact they redeem Duke Nukem’s name – after what happened with Forever – is really something.

We’ll see how the final product fares when it drops in early April for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC.

Check out the game in action in the clip below. (Thanks, IGN!)

Robert Workman

Robert Workman has spent years working in the video game industry, for sites like Shacknews, AOL GameDaily and Marooners Rock. He's also very skilled in contributing to podcasts and video broadcasts, and can pretty much out-game you under the table. Oh, and just go ahead and ask him about glorious craft beers. Go on, ask him.

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