Dune 2 RTS Now Available for Internet Browsers

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Dune 2 RTS Now Available for Internet Browsers

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The classic game that inspired Westwood's Command & Conquer can be played for free in your browser.

When most of us think of Dune, we probably remember Frank Herbert's science-fiction books or the Hollywood adaptation they inspired. For many gamers from the early 90s, however, Westwood Studios' Dune 2: The Building of a Dynasty was the classic that defined RTS gameplay and set the stage for Command & Conquer, Warcraft, and Starcraft. Now today's gamers have a chance to see what all the fuss was about, as Dune II has been faithfully recreated in Java and can be played for free on internet browsers worldwide.

In Dune II, players step into the boots of a commander for House Atreides, Harkonnen, or Ordos seeking to control the valuable spice trade of Arrakis. With the funds obtained from spice harvesting operations, players can construct units to defend their territory or attack enemy bases. Being the Dune universe, players also have to worry about buildings deteriorating under oppressive weather conditions, and deadly sandworms that can swallow units and vehicles whole. Constructing on rock is the only defense against these creatures, but you can be assured that maintaining your operations will occasionally require you to stray from safety.

Dune II popularized most RTS conventions still used today, including base-construction, resource gathering, and faction-specific weaponry. The game was not only successful, it went on to directly influence Westwood's Command & Conquer series and was named one of Time Magazine's top 100 videogames. Previously available for DOS, Amiga, and Sega Genesis, the Java version is an open-source alternative that gamers and gaming historians alike can explore to their heart's content.

Be warned: while the game has been recreated faithfully, the classic interface isn't user-friendly compared to modern RTS games. You'll probably want to spend some time with the in-game adviser, or Mentat, before jumping in and constructing new units. Still, as a gaming classic and important part of gaming history, it's great to see Dune II on our computers once again.

Source: Prosthetic Knowledge, via Joystiq

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Dune II is the common ancestor of the RTS genre in the same way that Street Fighter 2 is the common ancestor of the fighting game genre.

So yes its pretty damn important.

And on the note of user-friendliness, the earliest RTS that i know had biuld queues was C&C: Tiberian Sun, which was released in 1997. And still playable in Windows 7, by some miracle.

I'll wait for someone to do a Dune 2000 version on Java or HTML5. Also, someone else is also doing Command and Conquer on HTML 5. http://www.adityaravishankar.com/projects/games/command-and-conquer/

It's going to be said sooner or later, so I'll get it out of the way now.

"HE WHO CONTROLS THE SPICE, CONTROLS THE UNIVERSE!"

Ah takes me back! Also does anyone remember playing the Original Dune game where you bounced around recruiting fremen and your eyes gradually went more and more blue?

I think I played it on the old 486!

"Constructing on rock is the only defense against these creatures"

Since building on sand is impossible, that's rather easy, isn't it? ^_^
It's the units moving onto sand who had a veritable talent for getting eaten if you weren't paying attention.

"The Spice must flow!" Great find guys :)

I wonder if they faithfully recreated the bugs too? You know some ultra-purist is going to test it and complain if his favorite crashes aren't recreated.

It's nice that they remade this and let more people see the granddaddy of all RTS games.

God this takes me back.

To the good ol days....

...I miss westwood -cries-

Well there goes my productivity next week. So many great memories of this game, Dune 2 and X-Wing were the first two games I bought when I first got my own PC.

Although if this is an online version I'm guessing I won't be able to rewrite the data files to replace all of those Sardaukar Heavy Factories with Spice Silos.

nomaner:
I'll wait for someone to do a Dune 2000 version on Java or HTML5. Also, someone else is also doing Command and Conquer on HTML 5. http://www.adityaravishankar.com/projects/games/command-and-conquer/

I also think Dune 2000 was the better version.

gardian06:

nomaner:
I'll wait for someone to do a Dune 2000 version on Java or HTML5. Also, someone else is also doing Command and Conquer on HTML 5. http://www.adityaravishankar.com/projects/games/command-and-conquer/

I also think Dune 2000 was the better version.

It was exactly the same game with exactly the same units and exactly the same missions. The only difference was the updated graphics.

The gameplay was identical.

Sometimes I wonder if the so-called marijuana analog "spice" has its nickname coming from the Dune series.

I appreciate people bringing back the classics, and as much as I want to enjoy the gameplay, I look at the old interfaces designed for 16 bit 480x640 screens and think how badly that needs to be updated more than how much I want to play. I was kind of excited about the new Baldurs Gate but the same thing happened. The updated versions of Final Fantasy Tactics and Tactics Ogre is the right way to do this, and as far as I know they sold well.

ah sending a harkonen siege tank lumbering into the atreides base on a suicide mission to the construction yard.. self destruct BOOM those were the days :D

Pipotchi:
Ah takes me back! Also does anyone remember playing the Original Dune game where you bounced around recruiting fremen and your eyes gradually went more and more blue?

I think I played it on the old 486!

I kind of remember that one, I will have been playing on an Amiga 500+ though so will have had superior sound to the PCs of the day. Never quite understood it though, I was possibly a bit too young at the time!

Grouchy Imp:

gardian06:

nomaner:
I'll wait for someone to do a Dune 2000 version on Java or HTML5. Also, someone else is also doing Command and Conquer on HTML 5. http://www.adityaravishankar.com/projects/games/command-and-conquer/

I also think Dune 2000 was the better version.

It was exactly the same game with exactly the same units and exactly the same missions. The only difference was the updated graphics.

The gameplay was identical.

Not quite. There were a few gameplay modifications made to the game.

In addition to the fact that it was fucking awful.

Rabish Bini:

Grouchy Imp:

gardian06:
I also think Dune 2000 was the better version.

It was exactly the same game with exactly the same units and exactly the same missions. The only difference was the updated graphics.

The gameplay was identical.

Not quite. There were a few gameplay modifications made to the game.

In addition to the fact that it was fucking awful.

Really? A friend lent me their copy and it seemed the same to me. Slightly different plot, needlessly shinier pixels, but other than that almost unchanged. It struck me as a game that was superficially different but fundamentally the same - a graphics mod pretending to be a remake, if you get me.

And yeah, it was bloody needless.

Grouchy Imp:

Rabish Bini:

Not quite. There were a few gameplay modifications made to the game.

In addition to the fact that it was fucking awful.

Really? A friend lent me their copy and it seemed the same to me. Slightly different plot, needlessly shinier pixels, but other than that almost unchanged. It struck me as a game that was superficially different but fundamentally the same - a graphics mod pretending to be a remake, if you get me.

And yeah, it was bloody needless.

Yeah, there were slight changes like being able to control more than one unit at a time, buildings not deteriorating on concrete. Not to mention the unit balance was thrown ridiculously out of whack, which for me was the worst aspect of the game. The sheer number of troops created per battle was absolute bonkers too.

Basically, it's a game which I feel warrants and deserves no place in gaming history.

EDIT: I do get what you're saying about the game being fundamentally the same though. It's fundamentally the same but infinitely worse.

You can select one unit at a time, just like in the original. They didn't update the controls at all. Nice idea, but no thanks.

I think this is a very cool initiative. A true challenge for the hard core micromanager ;-)

Many RTS games have been made since then, but I still think the spice harvesting concept is the one that fits the genre best.

Fearzone:

I appreciate people bringing back the classics, and as much as I want to enjoy the gameplay, I look at the old interfaces designed for 16 bit 480x640 screens and think how badly that needs to be updated more than how much I want to play. I was kind of excited about the new Baldurs Gate but the same thing happened. The updated versions of Final Fantasy Tactics and Tactics Ogre is the right way to do this, and as far as I know they sold well.

Dune 2 was notorious for its bad interface even back then. The lack of unit control groups made it almost impossible to play at later levels, but people managed because it was so unique. You can't really compare it to something like BG which worked fine with its standard UI.

I see this as a novelty and a historical document. For actual gameplay Dune 2000 is recommended, it's almost an identical game with modern conveniences added, like control groups and building queues.

Pipotchi:
Ah takes me back! Also does anyone remember playing the Original Dune game where you bounced around recruiting fremen and your eyes gradually went more and more blue?

I think I played it on the old 486!

the one where you played as Paul and had to search the desert for seitches(sp? it's been a while lol) I loved that game...still have a copy for Sega CD :D

Pipotchi:
Ah takes me back! Also does anyone remember playing the Original Dune game where you bounced around recruiting fremen and your eyes gradually went more and more blue?

I think I played it on the old 486!

Same here. I still play it from time to time. While it doesn't have that much strategy in it, it has a great atmosphere and soundtrack. If you haven't played the CD version, you should. This game deserves way more attention than what it got so far.

Grouchy Imp:

And yeah, it was bloody needless.

Played both Dune II and Dune 2000. Vehemently hated the former, loved the Second,

Dune 2 might have been clunkier and somewhat cheesier, but it had been preferred by me mostly because it had a better soundtrack and giving it a Command and Conquer engine didn't really add much to the game aside from group select. It may sound odd preferring the "cheesy" midi over Dune 2000's "awesome sampling" but having Klepacki simply rehash most of his old material with actual instruments made it sound... tired... for lack of a better word.

Do they still have the 'there is a traitor among us - answer questions about a unit or vehicle or else'? Because frankly that was annoyingly awesome. The amount of times I lost the freaking manual to that game is beyond numbers.

I think I still have a copy of Dune II: The Battle for Arrakis on megadrive. My first rts game, and on of the best games ever made.

Bless the Maker and all His Water. Bless the coming and going of Him, May His passing cleanse the world. May He keep the world for his people.

If there's a thing I don't miss it's single clicking units to get them to move.
Nostalgia's good, but some things are better left for the memories.

Hell I still have Dune 2000 installed on my laptop, was playing it just last week. Fantastic series.

Pipotchi:
Ah takes me back! Also does anyone remember playing the Original Dune game where you bounced around recruiting fremen and your eyes gradually went more and more blue?

I think I played it on the old 486!

I remember it. I was like, 7, when I played a version on DOS, but I remember.

hell yeah i only started reading the book just recently and i have been meaning to check out the games based on the series.

wolf thing:
hell yeah i only started reading the book just recently and i have been meaning to check out the games based on the series.

Then don't bother with Dune II. Its connections to the books are tenuous at best.

Play it because it's an amazing game and look at the genesis of every modern RTS, but don't play it as a story set in the world of the Dune books because it really isn't one.

Dune. It's like Warhammer 40k, but older. And Arabic.

FOR THE GLORY OF HOUSE HARKONNEN!!!

I really love the Dune series. Specially the game Emperor: Battle For Dune. One of my favourite RTS's of all time!

Fearzone:

Dune 2 was notorious for its bad interface even back then. The lack of unit control groups made it almost impossible to play at later levels, but people managed because it was so unique. You can't really compare it to something like BG which worked fine with its standard UI.

I see this as a novelty and a historical document. For actual gameplay Dune 2000 is recommended, it's almost an identical game with modern conveniences added, like control groups and building queues.

Nonsense on both accounts. Dune 2 was hard yes but far from impossible even at the later stages, you just had to plan more.
Dune 2000 was ok but not really superior, it was more of the same with barely updated graphics.

My personal fav in the series of dune RTS's though was Emperor Battle for Dune. Sure it was waaaay off from cannon but it was a whole lot of fun and really that was all that mattered

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