After the brief reveal at The Game Awards, Funcom and Shiro Games have revealed a bit more info on about their upcoming strategy title based on Frank Herbert’s Dune in Dune: Spice Wars. The info comes from the newly updated Community FAQ page on Spice Wars‘ Steam page, which details the game mechanics, as well as what players can expect during the game’s Early Access phase.
According to the FAQ, Spice Wars will be a hybrid of real-time strategy and 4X strategy (think Civilization). The game will be in real time, but have a slower pace than in a typical RTS. “The game also features exploration, territory control, economic growth, combat, politics and spying, features that make it a true 4X game but do not detract from the core RTS experience that players would expect.” That being said, Spice Wars will feature base building, though you won’t be manually placing buildings on the ground.
As for the Houses that players can choose to play as, at the moment, House Harkonnen and House Atreides have been announced as the playable factions. Shiro is planning to have two other factions at launch, followed by a fifth faction during Early Access. The post also alludes to additional factions in the future.
At the moment, Spice Wars is a single-player focused game, although Shiro plans on adding multiplayer during Early Access. The team states that they’re choosing to focus on the core gameplay first, given the chunk of development time needed to fully realize the game.
As for when we’ll be able to play the game, Shiro plans on having the game out on Steam later this year. “We’ll also look at other potential distribution platforms in the coming months.”