EDIT: To clarify, while I discuss stuff like movie vs. book and the real-world political implications of the story, neither of those were my intention for this thread per se. As I say in the comments, I don’t think it makes sense to think about worldbuilding and campaign design in a vacuum, and especially given that worldbuilding is my favorite part far and away about TTRPG; in other words, particularly given that this is a TTRPG forum and within the context of TTRPGs, this thread was intended to discuss the gaming potential for Dune. For instance, I felt with the movie that it was very Game of Thrones-esque which could be an interesting perspective on Dune from a domain play or social intrigue perspective. Likewise, the idea of a non-computational scifi society of borderline superhumans could also be interesting from a tabletop perspective, and I’m wondering if there are hidden gems in the books not explored in the movie.
I watched the new Dune movie recently, and I mostly enjoyed it, although it did have some problems. I read the first book (and never quite finished the second book…) in middle school, and I remember enjoying it, but one of the smartest people I’ve ever met calls it his favorite book so I feel like I need to reread it now as an adult and with my current perspective. I enjoyed the movie enough to make me want to read the book; from what I vaguely remembered and also from what I could sort of feel out, I could tell that the movie was clearly glossing over a lot of details or background that likely would have been elaborated in the book and have been super interesting.
So without spoilers, do people think Dune (the book) holds up? Is it as brilliant as people say? Does the problematic white exceptionalism / white savior stuff from the movie get subverted later like I vaguely remember, or is that a thing I’d have to compartmentalize in order to appreciate the rest of the book?
And again, without spoilers, are there any particularly noteworthy details, pieces of lore, subtext, etc., that may or may not have been fully present in the movie, that might make me appreciate the setting more?
Because ya, this feels tentatively like something that if I reread it I would enjoy it and find a lot of inspiration in it, but I think I just need like one or two more enticing factoids to get me all the way there.