Dune Amiga 500

  • 1
  • 3 Years Ago
I'm going to warn you, I'm may be a little biased when reviewing this game. I loved it. Dune is a beautiful combination of adventure and strategy which I personally have never seen done better. For those unfamiliar with Frank Herbert's work, Dune is a novel about rival houses of nobility, and their struggle for control over the desert planet Dune. Dune is the only planet in the universe where the spice Melange can be mined. It is this spice that is required to make long distance space travel possible and therefore commerce. The house Atredies is sent to Dune to take over control from the barbarious Harkonnen, but forces are conspiring against them. On Dune, the youngest Atredies, Paul, joins with the native Fremen in fighting to grasp Dune back from the Harkonnen and it is here that the game puts us in control. Dune gives the player control over Paul in a simple 1st person adventure. Initially Paul explores the palace but eventually finds the way out and flies his ornithoptor to meet the Fremen. In Dune, you can talk to the inhabitants of Dune as well as the Atredies and their servants, and other characters can follow Paul on trips. Some of the characters have special abilities, and later are used to train the Fremen into troops to fight against the Harkonnen. Other Fremen are trained in mining, as the emporer requires regular shipments of spice. As the game progresses Paul must make alliegences with the Fremen and sinks into their culture. This is perfectly presented in the game. The conversations are done with a point and click interface and as Paul is exposed to the spice he develops his "sixth sense" reading thoughts and moods of others and using it to win their favour. Paul must travel around Dune convincing the Fremen to join him, and then assign them the task of planting, mining or military training. Controlling the growing armies of Fremen is the strategic part of the game. Where they mine, who they attack, and where they plant must be done with considerable thought. The game was designed with a lot of thought and the player will need to be thoughtful in completing it. Eventually the Harkonnen will need to be forced out of their strongholds or they will attack the fremen and Atredies bases. The battle for Dune rages as Paul manages resources (weapons, bulbs for planting, water, spice, aircraft, mining vehicles etc.) whilst still "networking" with the locals. The relationships in the game are just as important as any other resource, moral, and with it productivity, sinks if Paul doesn't motivate his workers. As Paul's extra-cognitive gifts develop he can contact Fremen from long distances and keep up to date with circumstances. The Harkonnen become fiercer and bolder in their tactics and the Fremen need to be adequately trained and led in resisting them. Dune bears some similarity in the strategy of Dune 2, but is a much richer game. It is an unfolding story where strategy fits neatly in with the adventure. The player is part of the story and feels for the people he deals with. It's rare that a game can be so sensitive (and it's all based on fiction). George Lucas must have liked Dune (the original novel) - he ripped most of it off in creating the Star Wars series. Frank Herbert deserves credit for such a great story, and Cryo for this masterpiece of gaming.

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