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Today in Nerd History | January 29

Nerd culture is a vibrant tapestry of events, releases, and milestones that have shaped the entertainment landscape. From iconic movies to groundbreaking games and significant literary contributions, this article takes a trip down memory lane to explore the notable nerd culture events that occurred on January 29th in history. Let’s celebrate these cherished moments that have left an indelible mark on the hearts of fans around the world.

THE RAVEN | 1845

In 1845, American author Edgar Allan Poe’s famously eerie poem “The Raven” was published in the New York Evening Mirror. Equally praised and panned by critics of the day, the poem made Poe famous throughout America and England.

 

Nerdy Facts:

  • Poe chose a raven as the symbol of his narrator’s despair because it could talk and had a dark and ominous appearance. He also borrowed the idea of a talking raven from Charles Dickens’s novel Barnaby Rudge.
  • Poe wrote the poem while his wife, Virginia, was dying from tuberculosis. He was inspired by his own grief and loss.
  • The publication of “The Raven” made Poe an instant celebrity and a household name. People would chant “nevermore” whenever they saw him. Newspapers printed parodies of the poem to attract readers.
DUKE NUKEM 3D | 1996

In 1996, Duke Nukem 3D released on PC. Duke Nukem 3D is a classic first-person shooter game that features the witty and bad-to-the-bone hero Duke Nukem, who battles against an alien invasion on Earth with various weapons and gadgets.

 

Nerdy Facts:

  • The game contains several humorous references to pop culture. Some of Duke’s lines are drawn from movies such as Aliens, Dirty Harry, Evil Dead II, Full Metal Jacket, Jaws, Pulp Fiction, and They Live; the captured women saying “Kill me” is a reference to Aliens.
  • The game was one of the first to feature online multiplayer modes, such as deathmatch and cooperative play. The game also supported user-generated content, such as custom maps, mods, and total conversions. Some of the most popular mods include Duke!ZONE, Duke Caribbean: Life’s a Beach, and Duke Nukem 3D: Nuclear Winter.
  • The game was developed using the “Build” engine, which allowed for interactive environments, a somewhat novel concept at the time. The game introduced a highly interactive world, where players could interact with many objects that did not directly contribute to gameplay, such as water fountains, light switches, and arcade machines.

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Station Manager of LTN Radio and co-host of the "Nerd History Podcast" & the "Two Words Podcast". Matt is a third-generation radio station manager who has done pretty much every job in the radio industry. Matt is the father of two boys and a little girl. It's probably the best thing about him.

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