Funcom releases first major update for upcoming Survival MMORPG Dune: Awakening

Today developer Funcom has dropped a massive amount of news for their upcoming Survival MMORPG Dune: Awakening, including a number of trailers going over some of the gameplay and core ideas for the game.

First off, Joel Bylos of Funcom and Dune: Part Two's cinematographer Greig Fraser discuss how the two teams worked together to try and best present Arrakis for their own respective mediums, and how their different visions for the desert stem from the desire to best adapt the books by Frank Herbert. Funcom in particular also shared their experiences with using Unreal Engine 5 to develop the game.

Alongside the above "Creating Worlds" featurette trailer, Funcom also released a more traditional gameplay trailer showcasing the game in action, showcasing the core survival gameplay and some of what players can expect to be able to do once the game releases.

During a recent preview event hosted by Warner Bros where we had the opportunity to see the recent trailers ahead of time, we also had the chance to ask some questions about the upcoming game. Beyond the details revealed from the trailers and press release today, we were also told that the sandbox survival MMORPG will allow players to craft specific attachments for equipment and vehicles depending on your use case, players will be able to directly tune their character through the game's leveling system, and that the game will feature open-ended dungeons for players to engage with. Special notice was also given to the idea that the intention is that even once players have amassed enough resources that basic survival of Arrakis will no longer be a problem, the hope is that the game can evolve to a political survival endgame, where players will have to navigate the other players on each server cluster, whether that might be alone or in a group.

Dune: Awakening Screenshots

Part of this comes down to the Shifting Sands, a part of the game world set in the deep desert which will reset itself every week; forcing players to continually build up their bases in order to extract resources, without the concern that any one group of players could become too entrenched. Here, ostensibly, player progression - whether that might be through their gear, or through their skills that they've accrued through leveling, hopefully will be important. Obviously we'll have to see how this all works out for the full release, when it launches on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S and PC.

Oslo, Norway – March 4, 2024 – Funcom is proud to reveal a brand-new trailer and featurette for Dune: Awakening, premiered in the first of a new showcase series, Dune: Awakening Direct. Hosted by the prominent Soe Gschwind, the fifteen-minute show dropped spectacular new footage of the open world survival MMO, where you will fight to survive on the most dangerous planet in the universe.
After announcing Dune: Awakening back in 2022, Funcom has kept its cards close to its chest. With the release of Dune: Part 2 this weekend, however, the developers are finally ready to uncover what has been growing beneath the sand’s surface this whole time.
In Creating Worlds: From Book to Film to Game, Funcom takes us on a breathtaking journey into the heart of Arrakis, featuring never-before-seen footage from the game. Interviews with Greig Fraser, academy award-winning Cinematographer on Villeneuve’s Dune Part 1 and 2, and Funcom Creative Director, Joel Bylos, reveal the creative overlap between Dune: Awakening and the recent movies. Get a glimpse at what it takes to bring the ultimate Dune fantasy to life.

Following Creating Worlds, the Survive Arrakis Trailer explodes out of the sand with colossal sandworms and soaring ornithopters. Gather materials to build your base in the style of your choosing, explore the deadly deserts in a variety of vehicles, learn deadly techniques and abilities from the Great Schools of the Imperium, and rise from survival to dominance. Witness the awesome scale and freedom of a living Arrakis.

Dune: Awakening combines the grit and creativity of survival games with the social interactivity of a large, persistent multiplayer game to create a unique and ambitious open world survival MMO. Dune: Awakening is more sandbox than theme park. The emphasis lies in the freedom it offers in choosing and pursuing your goals, and the emergent moments that arise as they clash with that of other players.
In Creating Worlds, Joel Bylos summed up the meaning of Dune: Awakening, "Funcom as a company has been on this journey for a long time, creating multiplayer worlds where players can live out their dreams and fantasies. We were there in the beginning with massively multiplayer online games. We’ve been there in the beginning with survival open world crafting games, and Dune: Awakening is a culmination of those legacies, bringing us forward into the future. It’s a culmination of what Funcom means as a company and what we can deliver."
This was only the first Dune: Awakening Direct, with more soon to follow, showcasing additional gameplay, interviews, and more. Dune: Awakening will come to PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X|S. Sign up to the Beta now at and wishlist the game on Steam.