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Herbert’s Dune in a pair of 1992 games #VintageComputing #Dune #Gaming #MSDOS

dune media history

The Digital Antiquarian has an excellent series on the history of Dune beyond Frank Herbert’s excellent print series.

Controlling the Spice, Part 1: Dune on Page and Screen discusses the books and the David Lynch movie released in December 1984.

It’s parts 2 and 3 which dig deeper, providing information on the spin-off games:

Controlling the Spice, Part 2: Cryo’s Dune discusses Philippe Ulrich, Cryo Interactive and the making of the game Dune. They released it in May 1992 simultaneously for MS-DOS, the overwhelmingly dominant computer-game platform in North America, and for the Commodore Amiga, the almost-as-popular computer-gaming platform of choice in much of Europe. The game was successful enough that Virgin funded expanded MS-DOS and Sega Genesis CD-based versions, which appeared in 1993, complete with voice acting and additional animation sequences.

Controlling the Spice, Part 3: Westwood’s Dune discusses the game released by Westwood which was named Dune II at release which was a more Risk like type of game.

dune-ii-the-building-of-a-dynasty-dos-front-cover

Upon its release in the fall of 1992Dune II was greeted, like its predecessor from Cryo, with positive reviews, but with none of the fanfare one might expect for a game destined to go down in history as such a revolutionary genre-spawner. Computer Gaming World called it merely “a gratifying experience,” while The One was at least a bit more effusive, with the reviewer pronouncing it “one of the most absorbing games I’ve come across.” Yet everyone regarded it as just another fun game at bottom; no one had an inkling that it would in time birth a veritable new gaming subculture. It sold well enough to justify its development, but — very probably thanks in part to its billing as a sequel to a game with a completely different personality, which had itself only been on the market a few months — it never threatened Eye of the Beholder for the crown of Westwood’s biggest hit to date.

The whole three articles are extremely well researched and written, well worth browsing through.


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