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GoatLord

Will there ever be another Commander Keen?

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For over two decades, id has been associated with action-driven first person shooters. So It's unlikely they'd invest in rebooting Commander Keen. Or would they?

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Well the Bethesda Blind Box figures from Funk does include a Billy Blazes figurine, but I suppose it's less likely to be a teaser and more of a bit of recognition.

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What's the point? Unless they have some radical new gameplay ideas, I think people want a rebooted Quake at this point more than anything.

Honestly, they should sell those rights to Tom Hall, it's his baby and he'd most definitely do something with it.

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I'd love to see a Keen FPS. All ages shooters that are actually fun are all too rare and there's plenty of material to work with in terms of enemies, environments, etc. That would be cool.

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CARRiON said:

Honestly, they should sell those rights to Tom Hall, it's his baby and he'd most definitely do something with it.

This or they could do what they did with the Wolfenstein IP - have some other Developer under Bethesda's umbrella develop games for it. Ideally someone who's good at that family game thingamygig.

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The most important question: Will a CK game give good profit to Bethesda?

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Voros said:

The most important question: Will a CK game give good profit to Bethesda?

It will depend on the marketing they use for it and how much money they invest on it. If they Market it as a sort of "Indie" game with some unique features and don't invest a lot of money. It can be profitable.

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Indie is code for half-assed, not-endorsed, and underbaked.

I don't think the world is going to have any use (and not money to be made) for an old 2D sidescroller like this. Now I loved CK when I was young, but the only way a new one could succeed is to give it some interesting mechanics and lots of "under-the-hood" content, while keeping its aesthetic... let's just go with "indie."

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There are many fan-made episodes of high quality, including an unofficial "The Universe is Toast" trilogy. That's the most we can hope for for the time being.

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Fonze said:

Indie is code for half-assed, not-endorsed, and underbaked.

I know Crystal Skull was bad, but that's no excuse to hate on Temple of Doom.

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Jaxxoon R said:

I know Crystal Skull was bad, but that's no excuse to hate on Temple of Doom.


This is perhaps the best thing I've ever seen on this forum.

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Aight Buff, you can take your Temple of Doom; I'll stick with my Flappy Doom, thanks ;D

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TraceOfSpades said:

What is so great about Commander Keen?

Commander Keen's greatness is self evident.

No, but seriously, they are fun early 90's platformers. If you're into old DOS/NES games and such they could be up your alley.

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TraceOfSpades said:

What is so great about Commander Keen?

Give them a try, they're some of the best platformers of their era.

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Steam sells Commander Keen Pack with all the game, but some minor config edits it can look quite good at 1920x1080. Is not a game for everyone, like most of if not all the plataformers of that era, the gameplay did not age very well.
Commander Keen is a prime example to see how 3d Realms was always behind ID Software steps...

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TraceOfSpades said:

Are copies that run well on modern machines easy to come by?

The shareware and demo downloads can be found here. The other episodes can be found easily enough. You will likely need DOSBox, and I recommend the D-Fend Reloaded front-end for ease of use.

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TraceOfSpades said:

What is so great about Commander Keen?


To be honest, I'm not so sure. What made them stand out at the time is the incredibly smooth scrolling that they could coax out of the IBM PC graphics hardware, and I love keen 1 and 4 because I played the heck out of them as a kid.

But it's hard to go back to. It's a one-hit-kill platformer, and some of the levels are absolutely labyrinthine and take forever to get through. The controls for keens 1-3 could be better since they tried to put pogo, fire AND jump into just two keys. Plus, there's an entire episode of the superior second series that is not available anywhere except abandonware sites.

So sure, give them a try, but don't be surprised if you bounce off them.

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The best way to control Commander Keen, is either with a Steam Controller, Elite Controller or a 360 controller with joy2key. The gameplay gets a lot smother with controllers, you can bind ctrl+alt in one of the triggers, etc.

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Agreed, and to add to what Wild Dog said, it actually feels quite natural with an SNES controller. The movement is a little stiff compared to stuff like Mario but it's still worth trying for sure.

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TraceOfSpades said:

What is so great about Commander Keen?


They're really solid platformers, especially later episodes like "Goodbye Galaxy" where the larger sprites and more creative level design made for an extremely memorable experience. Like other id games, the controls are tight, it's very visually clean and there's a lot of imagination and immersion. It's a very conventional platformer series by 2016 standards, but it plays very well and can be fairly addictive.

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Sgt Ender said:

I'm just gonna say it loud and clear.

No.

This fact has been pretty well established, but thanks for reiterating.

GoatLord said:

a very conventional platformer series by 2016 standards

We could use more conventional, simple adventure platformers these days. For some reason, developers feel the need to set themselves apart with some kind of game-play gimmick, and many times it doesn't make for a better game or leave any kind of lasting impression. In a gaming scene full of gimmicks, a straight-up platform game would be welcome.

Edit: grammar

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