‘Dune: Spice Wars’ deliberately avoided taking inspiration from the films

Sticking to the source material for 'Dune' meant "cutting a lot of ideas that we had in the first place," says developer Shiro Games

Dune: Spice Wars developer Shiro Games has broken down why the studio avoided being influenced by Dune‘s film projects and older game adaptations.

In a Steam blog shared yesterday (April 13), Dune: Spice Wars lead artist Jeremy Vitry explained the team’s approach to illustrating the world of Arrakis.

As the name suggests, Dune: Spice Wars is based on Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel Dune, which was recently adapted into a film starring Zendaya and Timothée Chalamet. The novel also received a film adaptation by David Lynch in 1984, but Vitry says Shiro Games deliberately avoided taking inspiration from either film.


“We tried to keep some distance from the previous Dune material out there because we really wanted to have our own take on it and express our own style. Plus, obviously having the opportunity to work within this world on Herbert’s legacy is a once in a lifetime chance to express ourselves and make our own mark within this universe as a video game developer,” explained Vitry.

Instead, Vitry says the team wanted “something that didn’t look like any of the previous Dune games, and aimed to “make things more stylised than the usual 4X games.”

Dune: Spice Wars
Dune: Spice Wars. Credit: Shiro Games.

The result, Vitry says, is an “art-deco” theme with “a hint of the “cold-war propaganda poster” feel to some of the illustrations.”

Vitry added that it was “really hard” not to utilise existing adaptations of Dune, and the art team’s creative attempts were further compounded because “everyone already has their vision of what Dune-related things would look like.”

Further challenges involved having to stick to Dune‘s existing material, which meant “cutting a lot of ideas that we had in the first place.”


Dune: Spice Wars launches in Early Access for PC on April 26. Back in March, Shiro Games detailed how the Smugglers faction will work in the game.

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