Science fiction, dystopian universes; dives into a reality far away from our daily life. In recent years, the passion for what people calls “pop culture”, or “nerd stuff” or even “brain stuff”, is gaining ground. Nowadays, taking on roles that are far from our everyday life is becoming more and more attractive, exciting and “mainstream”.

The Author of this article has known for a long time (since these worlds were a niche,and vaguely frowned upon) the sacred monsters of the Geek world, and of course he could not avoid talking about DUNE.

This 1965 novel by Frank Herbert is part of the “fantasy spring” which, in those years, consecrated famous precursors such as Isaac Asimov. There are countless works, spin-offs, video games, films and adaptations of this work which represented, along with novels of the caliber of The Lord of the Rings, The New World, The Foundation Trilogy, one of the fundamental cornerstones of the “nerd” culture modern.

Dune: Imperium, the 2020 board game that anticipates the release of the “remake” film Dune, is one of the endless tributes to Arrakis, Baron Harkonnen and the whole world that revolves around the precious spice. It is a game that combines worker placement mechanics with deck building, resource optimization and the creation of an army.

It looks like the umpteenth excuse to use a successful brand like Dune to make “another” boardgame.

For this reason, we have approached it with due caution. And we were really surprised.

Although having nothing new, the various mechanics of this game blend perfectly with each other, without creating the “crazy mayonnaise” effect of other games that mix different mechanics. This game is lean, fun, exciting and the theme of Dune, although not too much, is felt (especially when it comes to fighting at the end of the round, with the “intrigue” cards that add the right spice to the challenge!). The authors have done a great job, in our opinion, in fitting actions and characteristics to the various factions: for example, certainly focusing on Bene Gesserit does not allow us to focus on war. And that’s one of the unique traits of Dune.

As in many “Euro-style” games, also in Dune there is a strong need to play as soon as possible, and you can see even better, after opening the box, that to satisfy this need is really difficult…

The cards rule the mess, with several decks to be divided here and there. Of course, it doesn’t help that, due to the gameplay, the backs of most of them are identical, and to separate them at the beginning of the game is never easy; unless you prepare yourself with endless envelopes and sleeves to organize everything (which, already in itself, it wastes a lot of time). Not to mention the various player sets and resources. Even though not one of the “indomitable monsters” of clutter, a game like Dune which, by its nature, is a “middleweight” for gameplay, is not a middleweight for the setup.

So, we felt the need, primarily as a tribute to this sacred monster, to organize well Dune: Imperium. A card holder with dedicated dividers streamlines the division of the starting and gameplay decks, and the two deck holders that can be positioned directly on the dashboard for the Intrigue and Conflict decks will help you in the descent on Arrakis. The setup tray contains the character cards and various diplomacy tokens, first player, Mentat and more. The 4 trays for the players have separate slots for each type of piece and the various resource holders, with easy grip, will allow you not to spread precious spice, sunscreens and water everywhere.

The spice must flow, and the game begin. May the Arrakis desert be forgiving with you!

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