- For the Duke Nukem Forever weapon, see M1911 Pistol.
The Pistol is graphically redesigned and renamed the Water Pistol in Duke Caribbean: Life's A Beach.
The Pistol is a dark grey handgun, mostly resembling a Glock 26. It is invariably the first weapon the player will use/find in each game.
The Pistol has a high rate of fire, but each of its magazines only hold 12 rounds, meaning it needs to be reloaded, which takes time. It also has a high accuracy and can be used to shoot switch buttons in the game.
Tips and tricks
- Duke starts with 48 bullets, the same as a new picked-up pistol (Not a magazine).
- The Pistol is very accurate, which makes it perfect for shooting buttons at a distance, as well as firing at enemies from a long distance when Duke does not wish to expend rare ammunition of other guns.
- If you want to shoot an enemy in front of you without hurting the other ones, the Shrinker proves best, but the Pistol is a good secondary option for this.
- As the first weapon that Duke will have, due to lots of ammo being available and Duke likely preferring to use stronger weapons, the Pistol will almost always have lots of ammo, in case it is ever needed as a backup.
- Due to the availability of ammo, and Duke almost always having the Pistol, if the Duke comes across a situation in which he overmatches his opponent heavily, and is confident that he can avoid being damaged (either through cover, or a large distance between Duke and the enemy to dodge their fire), or if the enemy is Frozen or does not see Duke, it could be a useful tactic to use up ammunition for the Pistol so that you might conserve other ammo for when it is needed
- The Pistol reloads when the ammo count is a multiple of 12. Individual magazine ammo counts do not exist, so it is not possible to be carrying around multiple magazines with a couple of rounds in each of them. Any magazines not in the Pistol will have 12 rounds in them.
- If you know Duke only has a couple of rounds left before he needs to reload the Pistol, it may be wise to waste them before going into battle, so that he won't be forced to reload (which takes valuable time) almost as soon as Duke encounters an enemy.
The Pistol first appeared in the December 1994 prototype, LameDuke, where it was very similar to the final game. However, the LameDuke Pistol had a laser sight, which was removed in the final game.
According to Richard "TerminX" Gobeille, who has the complete archive of Duke Nukem 3D development files, the Pistol was once planned to fire bullets that could "bounce off ceilings and floors." Writing in the Duke4 Discord channel on March 7, 2021, Gobeille said he learned this from a text file created by the developers in 1995.
- Strangely, the Pistol maximum ammunition amount (200) is not a multiple of each magazine amount (12). In Duke Nukem 64, it has been changed to 192. The DN64 pistol can also use more powerful Dum Dum rounds.
- The game has an unused ammo for Pistol (48/AMMOLOTS) which adds 48 of ammo to the player. The same quote as the ammo magazine is used. There is no present graphic image for the tile.
- In Duke Nukem 3D, the pistol resembles a Glock 26. In Duke Nukem 64, it resembles a Browning Hi-Power pistol. In Duke Nukem: Time to Kill and Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project, the pistol is a golden Desert Eagle. A possibility is that Duke's pistol is actually a Hi-Point C9 9mm firearm.
- Some of Duke's pistols have a pistol laser mount for better accuracy/or used as crosshair in the games.
- In Duke Caribbean: Life's A Beach the Pistol is replaced with a water pistol.