Helping close out the PC Gaming Show, Funcom had Creative Director Joel Bylos come on to show off the Dune survival game Dune Awakening along with the first gameplay, almost a year after it was announced.
He was joined by game director Vijar Sommerbakk in the interview as they discussed more of the game, and how it is a survival mmo much like their past game Conan Exiles. Dune Awakening is built on 5 pillars:
- Politics and Intrigue
- Infinite Exploration (how the world changes over time, with storms each week shifting the sands and revealing or hiding new things)
- Combined Arms
- Expression and Customization
These allow players to play a variety of different ways, a key component of the expression part of those pillars. During the game players will go through what they identify as four different phases of the game: survive (basic survival), protect (protect the simple things you've made), expand (expanding and taking stuff), and control (control the spice and your organization). Arrakis is built to be deadly, and it will be the deadliest foe you face in the game and it can interfere with any battle you have.
The combined arms style of combat mixes all the weapons you would expect from the books (and movies). You have abilities (such as mentats), melee, ranged, and vehicles all mixed and matched together. Part of what helps the various ranged weapons like lasguns work is that much like the books using shields increases the chance of causing a deadly worm to attack, and those shields are what helps make melee combat common as they stop anything moving too fast. Vehicles have a mixture of ground and air vehicles, with the ability for players to customize their loadouts in a variety of ways.
In Dune Awakening they make use of Kanly concept to define the PVP-enabled areas, different regions of control, and everything. This is part of how they are implementing politics as well. PVP is both about large-scale and small-scale competition. It can also be about intriguing and convincing enemies to look in the wrong area for Spice.
As you would expect for a Dune game, spice is a major component. As you consume more spice you can unlock more skills, giving you more and more abilities. The cost to this is that your character is increasingly addicted to the spice meaning you need to spend more and more effort acquiring spice.
Dune Awakening is coming to PC at an unannounced time in the future and can be wishlisted on Steam.