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As many games as grains of sand.
September 2, 2011 1:54 PM   Subscribe

Dune has been the subject of quite a few games, all with varying interpretations of the setting material.

DUNE is an adventure game of sorts, drawing heavily on the David Lynch movie imagery, and roughly following the events of the first book. More or less.

DUNE II was not the first real-time strategy game, but it is often hailed as the prototypical example, informing all that came after. Later games in this line, like Dune 2000, are effectively remakes or updates of the original game. Despite the fact that it plays pretty loose with some fundamental aspects of Dune, Dune II is probably the most Dune game to date, and there are some some fan projects to remake it for modern computers. It ignores some basic bits of the setting; you can build lots of vehicles which seem to be able to drive over the sand without any problems.

Cryo Interactive made one Dune game (youtube playthrough) and attempted to make another, but went bankrupt. More videos from the cancelled Dune Generations: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,, 8, 9

There are also board and collectible card games.

Lately, some folk have been recreating Dune in Minecraft.
posted by curious nu (47 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite

 
Minecraft Dune is le broken!
posted by pmv at 1:57 PM on September 2, 2011


not a Dune dude myself, but this strikes me as a very weak FPP(SLwiki). Leagues of effort was clearly put in behind the scenes...but there was just a Dune post yesterday. As I said, I haven't bothered to click through to verify double-ness, so feel free to knock me for not tryin'.

My $.02
posted by obscurator at 2:00 PM on September 2, 2011


I have no idea what you're talking about, pmv. Maybe your vision is clouded. Here, have some spice coffee and try again.
posted by curious nu at 2:00 PM on September 2, 2011


If this is a weak FPP, then Duncan Idaho lives in his mother's basement and makes posts to 4chan
posted by KokuRyu at 2:03 PM on September 2, 2011 [4 favorites]


Dune post currently on the front page.
posted by hermitosis at 2:04 PM on September 2, 2011


In the end, those were not the droids I was looking for, curious nu.
posted by pmv at 2:04 PM on September 2, 2011


KokuRyu: "If this is a weak FPP, then Duncan Idaho lives in his mother's basement and makes posts to 4cha"

No, that's a clone.
posted by charred husk at 2:04 PM on September 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


If this is a weak FPP, then Duncan Idaho lives in his mother's basement and makes posts to 4chan

That's his ghola.
posted by benzenedream at 2:04 PM on September 2, 2011 [10 favorites]


" I don't really know or care anything about the topic, and I can't be assed to check, but I'm pretty positive this is a weak post."

Fantastic contribution.
posted by absalom at 2:06 PM on September 2, 2011 [22 favorites]


You're giving me your orni? Thank you, Muad'Dib!
posted by adamdschneider at 2:06 PM on September 2, 2011


I like how you use Dune as an adjective ("probably the most Dune game to date"). I'll have to start incorporating it into my daily lexicon.

"My commute this morning was very Dune."

"That report is so Dune that I hang my head in shame."

"Your Dune camera is godlike."
posted by jabberjaw at 2:08 PM on September 2, 2011 [4 favorites]


benzenedream was second to the joke but has better terminology.

Anyways, the Dune CCG was equal parts awesomesauce and trainwreck. If you are a fan of four or more hour long games of intricate strategy, the first set of rules were fantastic weith everyone backstabbing everyone else over the various requirements to win.

Each of the next three rules iterations reduced the win requirements more and more in order to speed up the game. The changes also made it lopsided for certain types of decks and sucked a lot of the Dune feel from the game.

Still got my Guild Navigator deck around somewhere. It ruled in the original rules.
posted by charred husk at 2:10 PM on September 2, 2011


jabberjaw: It's missing the word "popular" in there, but I've already had to ask to have links corrected, so I'm going to let that one go.
posted by curious nu at 2:14 PM on September 2, 2011


Dune II was frigging awesome. It's still the archetype of the genre in my mind. Hmm.. Warcraft 3. How do these Banshees work? Ah, like an Ordos Infiltrator.
posted by 256 at 2:17 PM on September 2, 2011 [3 favorites]


cleanup on aisle 3.
posted by lazaruslong at 2:20 PM on September 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


The Insidious Ordos! Mr. epersonae played a ridiculous amount of Dune 2000. That's the part I remember best, because it was a catchphrase in our circle for a while.
posted by epersonae at 2:29 PM on September 2, 2011


Parker Brothers also put out a board game in 1984.
posted by GavinR at 2:30 PM on September 2, 2011


"insidious House Ordos"
posted by infinitewindow at 2:30 PM on September 2, 2011


epersonae, clearly it's a catchphrase outside your circle too.
posted by infinitewindow at 2:35 PM on September 2, 2011


So will the spiritual descendants of Dune II battle it out over the centuries until a surprise merger of two bitter software rivals results in the birth of the Kwisatz Haderach of RTS?
posted by infinitewindow at 2:37 PM on September 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


The game adaptations always seem to focus on the Atreides/Harkonnen/Fremen, but if you look at the Frank series as a whole, I always thought the Bene Gesserit/Tleilaxu/Honoured Matres stuff was more interesting (I do think the first book is the best one though). Face dancers are cool.
posted by juv3nal at 2:42 PM on September 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


The boardgame represents the Bene Gesserit, The Guild, and the Emperor, and is about the most epic game you can play with 6 players. Game might last two hours, game might last 8 hours, you just never can tell. The only real downfall to it.

The Bene Gesserit can win the game if they predict which faction(s) will win and on which turn. If they are right, they win. Very thematic...
posted by Windopaene at 2:44 PM on September 2, 2011 [3 favorites]


Bene Gesserit game would be real long, relatively boring, and would probably not play very well cause Voice recognition software always sucks.
posted by nathancaswell at 2:45 PM on September 2, 2011 [4 favorites]


The Bene Gesserit can win the game if they predict which faction(s) will win and on which turn. If they are right, they win. Very thematic...

Didn't know about that, that's all sorts of awesome.
posted by juv3nal at 2:50 PM on September 2, 2011


juv3nal: that's sort of the curse of license-related games in general, a combination of rehashing the story in weird ways (to accommodate gameplay) and missing "the point" (in Dune: superheroes would be disastrous for humanity, and long-term ecology planning is important). In particular, the first Dune has a lot of pretty standard adventure story stuff, easy to grab on to. Once you get to God-Emperor and beyond, though, you wind up in full-on Author Tract mode.
posted by curious nu at 2:51 PM on September 2, 2011


It looks like the Dune Minecraft server is down. But the world files are available here.
posted by munchingzombie at 2:53 PM on September 2, 2011


I enjoyed the sub-faction system in Emperor: Battle for Dune. Those NIABs!
posted by michaelh at 2:57 PM on September 2, 2011


Wow, watched part of the playthrough for the the Cryo Interactive game, it is terrible. They actually spelled Frank Herbert as Franck Herbert on the game title screen. There are cutscenes that cut off halfway through, like they ran out of money.
posted by Ad hominem at 3:14 PM on September 2, 2011


The boardgame represents the Bene Gesserit, The Guild, and the Emperor, and is about the most epic game you can play with 6 players. Game might last two hours, game might last 8 hours, you just never can tell. The only real downfall to it.

You're referring to the Avalon Hill game, which I myself FPP'd back in February. It is a very much admired classic, from the designers who would go on to make Cosmic Encounter.

The FPP I made was very long and describes the game in some detail, but the basics: Dune is a light war-game that makes strong use of hidden information and risk management in its combat, but the thing everyone admires about Dune is the differences between its six sides: Atredies, Harkonnen, Emperor, Bene Gesserit, Spacing Guild and Fremen. Most war games give each side the same basic capabilities, along with some minor tweaks to remove the play from boring symmetricallity. Dune instead gives each side two or three major powers, I mean game-breaking things, or rather, things that would be game breaking if all the sides didn't have them. Somehow the various game breaking elements break each other, and make the game generally fair, although challenging to analyze.
posted by JHarris at 3:33 PM on September 2, 2011 [2 favorites]


The long-rumored Fantasy Flight version of the Dune boardgame that JHarris refers to has finally been announced - Rex:Final Days of an Empire. Unfortunately, they were unable to secure the rights to the Dune setting, so it will be set in the same universe as their Twilight Imperium boardgame.

It remains to be seen how much will be changed apart from the setting, but if you're interested in the boardgame it's worth keeping an eye on it.
posted by mmmtofu at 3:58 PM on September 2, 2011 [2 favorites]


hermitosis: “Dune post currently on the front page.”

Maybe take a look at who made the first post.

I think this is great, curious nu. Thanks.
posted by koeselitz at 4:00 PM on September 2, 2011


What doesn't exist, but should, is a nice old fashioned political strategy game set in the dune universe.

LANDSRAAD: TOTAL WAR as it were.
posted by beschizza at 4:04 PM on September 2, 2011 [3 favorites]


I want to play some sort of dune game that mostly involves doing cool kwizatz haderach things to see the future and bend space time or something superimposed on a dune 2 style game. I'm imagining some sort of cool visual effects and weird puzzle elements with a techo guitar rock soundtrack. Then if you succeed in your kwizatz haderach things you can easily crush your enemies.
posted by Chekhovian at 4:24 PM on September 2, 2011


The Burning Wheel roleplaying game put out a free Dune-setting, called Jihad (pdf). All your favorite Dune bits are there, with slightly altered names: Jihadis, Sisters, Analysts, House Nobles, etc.

My favorite character trait is Fucked:

There is no armor in this setting. Not personal armor, not vehicular armor. Laser
weapons or nuclear stand-off munitions efficiently destroy any material resistance put
in their way. The reason why the Soldier gets the Fucked trait is because he doesn’t
have a shield. Guess who they turn the lasers on during the pitched battles?

posted by yeloson at 4:31 PM on September 2, 2011


"My commute this morning was very Dune."

"I know how you feel...this sleeper hasn't fully awakened either."
posted by jquinby at 5:25 PM on September 2, 2011 [20 favorites]


Multiple active Dune threads is a feature, not a bug.
posted by EatTheWeak at 5:30 PM on September 2, 2011 [5 favorites]


BTW, I have the Avalon Hill game, I got it when I was ten or twelve an couldn't convince anyone to play it with me. It has been sitting on a shelf since then. Seems like I am missing the little screens or whatever they are for guild and Atredies. Probably cannibalized them for some ridiculous project.
posted by Ad hominem at 5:49 PM on September 2, 2011


If you are in Chicago Ad hominem, my group and I are always on the lookout for people to play Dune with. IT funny people either love it or hate it, generally the latter, so it's hard to get a full 6.
posted by Carillon at 6:09 PM on September 2, 2011


Nope, not near Chicago, wouldn't mind finally playing it after all these years though. I also have Who Can Beat Nixon for some reason, the ET board game and the Pac Man board game, gotta love parents, wanted a 2600 so they got me the Pac Man board game because it was probably just as good.
posted by Ad hominem at 6:26 PM on September 2, 2011


I had the Pac Man Boardgame when I was a kid. My love of Pac Man and marbles made it a winning combo for me. Can't remember if the game play was any good though.
posted by yeloson at 6:52 PM on September 2, 2011


Man alive, I played the heck out of Dune and even moreso Dune II. I think that if Dune Generations had been released, I might have succumbed to the MMORPG bug.

Dune had an awesome soundtrack - for the time/young me. Today, it is unbelievably dated. Emotion control, indeed.

The thing with the Dune II palace "special attacks" (guided warhead for the Harkonen, inflitrator for the Ordos, and ... fremen? for the Artreides) were super powerful, but had pretty high failure rates and looong regeneration times.

I loved leading enemies into spice blooms or into the paths of wandering sandworms. Good times.
posted by porpoise at 7:06 PM on September 2, 2011


I love the Dune Chronicles (and Doon), but the only Dune game I've ever played is the fantastic Avalon Hill board game.

I do know that a friend in middle school once amazed one of his buddies by typing in "Penis Warehouse" for the anti-piracy image identification check in Dune II and having it work. (Of course it was a cracked copy.)
posted by kmz at 8:15 PM on September 2, 2011


beschizza: It'd be an interesting game, since all the commerce, trade and warfare is ultimately mediated by the spacing guild, it'd be prohibitively expensive to attack another planet openly.

So the early part of the game would be about management n trading and internal security, as you try and establish control over your home planet and get control of all available revenue, while fending off spies, assassins, saboteurs, and various other forms of subversion.

Mid-game you get established enough to start sending agents of your own, all the while trying to stay under the radar of or make yourselves useful to the Emperor, the Guild, and the Bene Gesserit, all of whom can destroy you (using the Saurdaukar, a Blockade, or a lone strange woman in a black robe apparently unarmed), if you get on their bad side.

You could have the fall of the old Emperor and the rise of Paul Atriedies as a scripted event like the Mongol invasion in Middle Ages games. All of a sudden there are huge armies of Fremen wandering around the map, the price of spice spikes as everyone starts hoarding, the factions formerly propped up by the emperor are running scared, and we're in a general state of 'war of all against the all'.
posted by Grimgrin at 1:15 AM on September 3, 2011 [2 favorites]


Also: Dune Wars, an excellent Civ 4 mod.
posted by Sebmojo at 4:24 AM on September 3, 2011


"My commute this morning was very Dune."

Took me an extra 50 minutes due to an overturned worm on I-80.
posted by mikeand1 at 9:47 AM on September 3, 2011 [2 favorites]


Earlier this year, there was a thread about Dune RPGs.
posted by jiawen at 10:00 AM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dune II was the only one I played. It had one fatal flaw:

Fremen get eaten by sand worms instead of capturing them. Really? REALLY?!?!?!

I still remember hollering in triumph the first time my palace generated a group of fremen, and I moved them to the nearest sandworm as quickly as I could, expecting to lay waste with Shai-Hulud, pumping myself up the whole way, talking smack to the computer opponent that didn't know they were about to get eaten by a Maker. Anticipation built, and built, my energy level rising. The worm was under the fremen!

Then a tiny vortex formed, and without even any audio to mark the occasion, my fremen were gone.

I'm still bitter.
posted by thatnerd at 9:16 AM on September 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


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