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For the Duke Nukem Forever weapon, see Shrink Ray (DNF).

The Shrinker, also known as the Shrink Ray, is a weapon capable of shrinking enemies in Duke Nukem 3D and its many ports and expansions. After shrinking an enemy, Duke will automatically stomp on the shrunken enemy if it is within range.


Shrink Ray

Shrinker in the N64 port.

The Shrinker is a high-tech weapon that glows as a result of its green, crystalline ammo. When fired, the weapon flashes while its green crystals are visibly electrified.

The Shrinker deals no damage but instead shrinks enemies. While shrunk, enemies will wander aimlessly without stopping to shoot the player. If the player approaches a shrunken enemy, Duke will automatically stomp the enemy to death. If left alone, shrunken enemies will return to normal after 11.69 seconds.

Shrinker projectiles produce a blast radius. Due to how enemy collision boxes work, larger enemies may not register a hit on higher parts of their bodies. However, firing projectiles closer to the ground may shrink larger enemies, and it may shrink multiple smaller enemies simultaneously.

Effects of being shrunk[]

If the player is shrunk by the Shrinker or by the Protector Drone attack, the following effects will manifest:

  • The viewpoint will change to be close to the floor.
  • The player will be unable to use any weapons (even kick enemies). Instead, two hands will display, to represent Duke moving them up and down while running.
  • It will be possible to enter small spaces (although Duke will die if the shrink effect wears off while he is inside).
  • A shrunken Duke will drop down to a lower floor instantly. That is, when going off an edge of a cliff, Duke will appear at the bottom instantly instead of falling.
  • Other players in a multiplayer game can kill Duke instantly by stomping him. Enemies will not attack or stomp Duke while he is shrunk, although if the player returns to their normal size close to an enemy they will be smashed.
  • It's still possible to use the Jetpack while being shrunk (which can make it harder to stomp the player).
  • Steroids grant immunity from a shrink blast. A shrunken player who uses Steroids will automatically return to their normal size.

Tips and Tricks[]

  • A weapon of choice against enemies with lots of health such as Assault Commanders, Pig Cops, Enforcers and even Battlelord Sentrys due to the fact that only one shot is required to shrink them.
  • Since it is not a hitscan weapon, it should be only used at small distances.
  • The Shrinker is very good for conserving ammo because it takes one shot to shrink an enemy. This can be a lifesaver in certain situations, as it allows you to conserve ammo for very useful weapons, like the RPG, for situations where it's really needed.
  • You can shrink multiple enemies with one blast. The enemies need to be right next to each other in order for it to work. The Holoduke is useful for baiting enemies to get extremely close to each other for a multi-shrink.
  • The projectiles can be deflected off mirrors; this can be used to your advantage to bounce them around a corner.
  • It is possible to shrink yourself by bouncing the projectile off a mirror and having it hit Duke Nukem. See Effects of being shrunk, below.
  • It doesn't have any effect whatsoever on bosses, Protector Drones, or mechanical enemies such as Turrets or Sentry Drones.
  • The Shrinker has the highest projectile speed in the game, faster than the RPG, Freezethrower, and Devastator.
  • You are immune to shrinker rays while steroids are active.
  • Use steroids when advancing with this weapon. You will not harm yourself, even if you bypass your shot.
  • The combination of having the highest projectile speed, causing no self-harm while using steroids, and the speed boost of steroids makes this weapon deadly in dukematches.
  • If shrunk, you can grow back to normal by activating steroids. During dukematches, ensure your opponent doesn't obtain the steroids or jetpack (they can escape by flying).


  • In version 1.3d, the Shrinker's projectiles had a blast radius of 650 map units. This was changed to 680 in the Atomic Edition.
  • Several bugs related to the Shrinker are present in the game.
    • If an enemy (with exception of the Enforcer and Pig Cop) is hit (or frozen) while in shrunk state, he will act as a normal enemy despite being shrunk, and will not turn back to normal size.
    • If a Battlelord Sentry is returned back to normal after being shrunk, it will just run around without firing until it is hit.
    • If certain NPCs are shrunk, they become slightly larger when they return to normal.
    • In general, enemies that recover from being shrunk will be stretched slightly differently compared to their original size.
    • In Duke Nukem Advance, shrunk enemies can still attack the player and inflict normal damage to him/her, whether it is a bug or a developer's oversight is not known.
  • The Shrinker actually has a blast radius, and as a result large enemies will be hard to be hit with accuracy (this is the case with the Battlelord Sentry). This basically results in the projectile hitting the "outside enemy" but the explosion doesn't have enough radius to hit the "inside enemy" resulting in a null hit.
Duke Nukem 3D
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