To close out the PC Gaming Show 2023, Dune Awakening, Funcom’s mysterious survival MMO based on Frank Herbert’s series of novels, finally received an extended gameplay preview. The presentation and interview showed off the massive open world, varied combat and political intrigue which players can engage in.
As per the PC Gamer interview, Funcom Creative Director Joel Bylos outlines how he expects players to progress as they play the game. “By the end of the game perhaps you’re running a guild,” he said, “you have a fleet of vehicles, ornithopters flying in formation, sand bikes cruising across the desert beneath them, tanks kicking up a cloud of dust as you drive to a spice blow in the distance in order to harvest with your guild. You see in the distance another guild coming towards you. And just as you clash, you hear the rumble of a sandworm coming. That’s combat in Dune: Awakening.”
Funcom has advised that Dune: Awakening is built on five core gameplay pillars. These are Survival, Politics and intrigue, Infinite exploration, Combined arms combat, and Expression and customisation. It likely isn’t a coincidence that these pillars spell out the acronym SPICE, which in accordance with the Dune mythos remains an important resource in Dune: Awakening. As you explore the deserts of Arakis, you can acquire spice to sell on the exchange, or consume for yourself to expand your potential, at the risk of addiction.
Appropriately for the setting, and not unlike Funcom’s previous title, Conan: Exiles, managing resources and surviving in a hostile environment also forms a large element of Dune: Awakening. This means acquiring and conserving enough water for yourself, and any other purposes as you progress through the game. Finding shelter to protect yourself from Arakis’ deadly storms is also crucial, whether that be a natural cave, or constructing your own base.
Dune: Awakening is still in development, with no confirmed release window or date advised at the moment. A closed beta is planned, and those interested in signing up can do so via the game’s official website.