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Dune Survival Game Will Feature Vehicular Gameplay, Pants-Pooping Status Unclear

Funcom's Dune game greatly expanded its scope following a 2020 acquisition by Chinese media giant Tencent.


Funcom is working on a multiplayer-focused survival game set in author Frank Herbert's Dune universe, and now development studio NUKKLEAR is being brought on to help bring the project to completion and lend their expertise when it comes to the game's vehicles.

NUKKLEAR isn't a well-known name, but recently has helped develop games like the Destroy All Humans remake and vehicle-focused Everspace. The developer also released helicopter shooter Comanche earlier this year. NUKKLEAR will help co-develop Dune after having recently received a 1.6 million euro grant from the German government.

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Now Playing: Dune Trailer (2020) Breakdown - Lore Explained & Everything You Missed

The experience NUKKLEAR brings to the table in terms of vehicle focused games seems to be of special interest to Funcom CEO Rui Casais, who in a press release says Funcom has "benefited particularly from their expertise in vehicular-based gameplay." Casais states that Dune is the most ambitious project Funcom has ever worked on. The game's scope grew in size following Chinese media giant Tencent's acquisition of Funcom in 2020. As such, Casais states that having skilled and reliable partners like NUKKLEAR is a must.

Not much is known about Funcom's upcoming Dune game, including how it will play, what platforms it will come to, or when it may be released. Originally pitched as a MMO in 2019, it has more recently been discussed as a multiplayer survival game in the vein of Funcom's Conan Exiles. Based on the press release announcing NUKKCLEAR's involvement, it seems safe to assume that iconic Dune vehicles like the dragonfly-like Ornithopter and more might be drivable once the game does emerge.

Dune as a franchise sees various noble houses in the far future battling for control of the desert planet Arrakis, the sole source of a powerful drug that expands human life and allows for safe space travel throughout the universe. Arrakis is home to massive sandworms, as well as the Fremen, a warrior tribe who call the desert home. Given the harsh conditions on Arrakis, a survival game makes sense, though it remains to be see if players will get to wear stillsuits that recycle their own bodily waste in the upcoming game.

Funcom and NUKKLEAR's Dune uses the same logo as the recently released Dennis Villeneuve Dune film, though it's unclear if the upcoming survival game will share other similarities like character and vehicle designs from the movie as well. A sequel film (or rather the second half of one story), Dune Part 2, is slated for an October 2023 release.

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