In addition to the upcoming new film adaptation, Frank Herbert's Dune novels are being developed into video games. The news comes on the heels of a recent waves of casting announcements for the upcoming adaptation being helmed by director Denis Villeneuve, and will join a host of video games being developed for pre-existing franchises.
The hunger for all things Dune seems to be reaching its peak right now. In recent months, casting news for Villeneuve's upcoming new adaptation (the second adaptation following David Lynch's version from 1984) has come at a frenzied pace. With Timothee Chalamet confirmed to play protagonist Paul Atreides, other cast members include Oscar Isaac and Rebecca Ferguson, who will play Paul's parents Duke Leto and Lady Jessica, respectively, Stellan Skarsgard as the villain Baron Vladimir Harkonnen, and respected actors Charlotte Rampling, Javier Bardem, and Josh Brolin. Considering the hunger and curiosity for how this new adaptation will pan out, it should come as no surprise that a series of video games has also been announced.
In a new press release, it's been revealed that Legendary Entertainment and Herbert Properties LLC are coming together to develop multiple video games based on Dune, thanks to the partnered companies reaching an agreement with Funcom. It's not yet known what structure the games will take, nor have any details been released about a plot, characters, or game features as it's still early in the development process. Production on the games are set to begin later in 2019 in Oslo, Norway.
A quote from Funcom CEO Rui Casais notes the excitement over this news and what the Dune video games could become. "Funcom has a strong history of working with beloved sci-fi/fantasy intellectual properties including our bestsellers Age of Conan and Conan Exiles," Casais says in the press release, going on to remark, "So many of us at Funcom, myself included, are huge fans of Frank Herbert’s work and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to collaborate with Legendary to bring the iconic DUNE universe to life for gamers all over the globe."
The timing of a set of Dune games going into development feels very much in line with what's happening in the gaming arena right now. While it's certainly not unheard of for a book or film to be developed into a video game or vice versa, there's been a noticeably recent spate of video games that have been released or confirmed as in development within the sci-fi/fantasy realm that are based on existing films, TV shows, and beyond, including World War Z and The Walking Dead. There may be little to no information on what kind of games Funcom will develop for Dune, but hopefully, there's already a built-in audience from both the love of pre-existing games of its kind and Lynch and Villeneuve's film adaptations to spark curiosity in buying them when they eventually hits shelves.