Dune: Awakening sandstorm

Dune: Awakening Won’t Have You Play as a Messiah

While fans can now watch Dune: Part 2, they will have an opportunity to explore Arrakis in the upcoming Dune: Awakening. However, players shouldn’t expect to emulate Paul Atreides too closely, as Funcom says no one gets to play as a messiah.  

Dune: Awakening players aren’t there to lead a holy war

“We agree that religion is an integral part of the Dune universe,” reads a post on Dune: Awakening’s Twitter account. “This is why in Dune: Awakening you will meet and interact with people of different religions along your journey. However, as opposed to the story presented in the books, the player is not a messiah and will not play a major role in any of them. Leading people on a holy war is not why you arrive on Arrakis.”

Fans were mostly understanding and glad that the company is open about its intention with the upcoming Dune MMO. However, a presumably joking Twitter user suggested that the game could bestow messianic powers on a random player every other week.

“Didn’t the books warn us about that,” the developer replied.

Religion is central to the themes of the Dune films and novels. Zen Buddhism was a significant influence on author Frank Hurbert, and he incorporated various concepts from Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Hinduism. However, the books also explore the role of religion as a tool of political power and social control and warn against putting absolute faith in a single messianic hero.

It’s questionable to what degree a survival MMO like Dune: Awakening can grapple with those ideas effectively. Religion is also something of a perpetually touchy subject. Given these factors, it’s understandable if Funcom might prefer to keep the holy prophecies away from its player characters.

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