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September 26, 2006

Frank Herbert's Dune (1979)

The 1979 Dune table-top strategy game by Avalon Hill, that is. I cannot believe I am only finding out about this thing now. It looks to be the best game adaptation I have seen in any format; certainly superior to the lamentable videogames on offer. If Hasbro cannot be bothered to remarket the game and I cannot track down a copy on eBay it may be possible to produce a table-top hack version...

It is technically possible to play with less, but it robs it of something. My friends and I refuse to play with less than six. The six players each adopt one of the characters/factions of the book: Atreides, Bene Gesserit, Emperor, Fremen, Guild, and Harkonnen. The object of the game is to seize three (or, more commonly, four) of the five strongholds on Dune: Arrakeen, Carthag, Sietch Tabr, Habbanya Ridge Sietch, and Tuek's Sietch. This is done with a combination of economic, military, and religious might, with a strong dose of treachery.

Wargame nerds of Toronto: To me!

Posted by Ghost of a flea at September 26, 2006 06:37 AM


Lamentable video games? P'shaw! Many an hour I spent on this little gem for the Sega Genesis. How dare you imply I wasted my time :-)

And the yellow and green sections of that game piece board look like... well, dicks!

Posted by: Temujin [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 02:08 PM

Far be it from me to belittle House Ordos!

Posted by: Ghost of a flea [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 02:14 PM

You might want to try the extreme Grognards over at http://talk.consimworld.com/. I haven't been there for a long, long time, but that's where all the wargame nerds used to hang out online.

Posted by: Nicholas [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 02:17 PM

I was addicted to Dune 2000 a few years back for PC. It's the same format at the old Dune:BfA game, but a lot better graphics and video. They give it a terrible review, and although I also spent many hours with Dune 2000 avoiding my college papers, this analysis is correct:

And because the game takes place on a desert planet, every single map looks exactly alike. Thus, other than the occasional crashed ornithopter here and dead sandworm there, every single map looks equally boring.

Sad, but true.

Posted by: Temujin [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 03:17 PM

I enjoyed Dune 2000 up to some point I have a vague recollection of the thing crashing out on me. That said, the main thing was to have a fleeting sense - and I do mean fleeting - of being in that world. Much better was a Dune MUSH I joined if only for the test I had to pass to play a Bene Gesserit. The appeal wore off quickly, however, because I had to register a female character to play Bene Gesserit. This lead the usual nerd male/female ratio of guys to all assume I might be the nerd-girl of their dreams. Hilarity ensued if only briefly as I deleted the character.

What I might like is some Dune equivalent of EverQuest or the Star Wars version of same. Though the appeal of this Avalon Hill tabletop is the Diplomacy aspect of the game which reflects something central to the novel.

Posted by: Ghost of a flea [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 03:26 PM

Aye, the Dune boardgame is a classic. For more information--and finding gamers and whatnot--I'd try Boardgamegeek before Consimworld:


The game has a strong and devoted following. Definitely worth finding and trying out!

Posted by: Alfred [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 05:27 PM

I know someone who might be willing to part with the game for the right payment... say, something equally legendary and rare like the original Divine Right or Shogun...

Posted by: Varenius [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 26, 2006 06:24 PM

Shay 'hello' to my little atomic friendsh!

Posted by: The_Campblog [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 27, 2006 07:41 AM