Ion Maiden Revives Duke Nukem 3D’s Engine For A 1990’s FPS Retro Romp
Ion Maiden Early Access

Voidpoint and 3D Realms announced that Ion Maiden is currently in Early Access on Steam. The game is built on the Build Engine, which was made famous for Duke Nukem 3D, Blood and Shadow Warrior, the edgy FPS games that helped define the late 1990s and give royal middle-fingers to the Puritans, the Christian Conservatives, the moral arbiters, and the tone-policing censorship enthusiasts.

Unfortunately Ion Maiden is no Duke Nukem 3D, opting to veer away from the raunchy exploits that the old-school FPS titles were known for. It still has some blood, gore and gibs if you were interested in that kind of content.

Additionally, the typically macho hero is replaced by today’s proverbial “kick-ass” heroine who “don’t need no man”. You can check out the trailer for Ion Maiden below.

The gameplay looks solid. I’m actually really digging some of the weapons, especially that pump-action street sweeper. It’s a shame we don’t get more inventive weapons like that in other AAA games.

In fact it’s a dying shame that an indie-made project on a 20-year-old engine has more creative gameplay and aesthetics than $100 million cookie-cutter factory-made rehashes that are pumped out every single year with a little bit of its soul taken out each and every time around while being replaced with the bull-crap wallet-raping nonsense that the ESRB gladly refuses to call gambling because too many of their scum-sucking, bottom-feeding lobbyists have their pockets lined with the hopes and dreams of Little Timmy’s future college fund that’s being used to feed his loot box-addicted dad’s habit, which is all done in an attempt to push the profit-sliding margins for the greed-chasing devils of the corporate kingdom into the black.

Anyway, 3D Realms’ Federik Schreiber explained in the Steam post that they’ve done more than just revive the old 1990’s game engine that helped turn a classic 2D icon into a video game legend, stating that they upgraded and overhauled the necessary parts to help bring Ion Maiden to life…

“We’ve spent a lot of time tinkering under the hood to take advantage of new technology and techniques. Bigger levels, hundreds of new colors, and morphing maps that transform mid-level are all just a few of the advancements made to the engine.”

This is probably great news for enthusiasts, especially for purists who recognize that many of the old engines had vertex limits when it came time for compiling levels, limiting the creative vision for most enthusiast map makers. Those limits have been wiped out and Voidpoint went wild creating the kind of game they’ve always envisioned making.

You can pick up a digital copy of the Early Access version of Ion Maiden from the Steam store for $19.99. During the first week of being on sale the game is marked down by 10% off. Additionally the game will launch on, but for now it’s only accessible by those who purchased the deluxe edition of the long-forgotten isometric shooter from 3D Realms called Bombshell.


Billy has been rustling Jimmies for years covering video games, technology and digital trends within the electronics entertainment space. The GJP cried and their tears became his milkshake. Need to get in touch? Try the Contact Page.

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