Frank Herbert's Dune
suffers from a recurring identity crisis. Never is it truly clear whether it is supposed to be adventure or action. The levels and overall speed of the game show it off as an adventure title, but the weapons and lack of 'covertness' demand an action-oriented approach. Whether they tried to touch on both elements on purpose or not is a question left unanswered, but it is clear that they didn't get too far with either of them.
The game kicks off as Paul Atreides and his mother reach a Fremen community somewhere on the desert planet of Arrakis, but known to the locals as Dune. It follows the plot accordingly to around the end of the movie, so there won't be any real plot surprises for the Dune fans out there. From this little village located inside a large rock formation, Paul will devise and launch a series of missions on the evil Harkonnens who are harvesting the spice on Dune. After each mission, you will return to this place to get new equipment and mission orders. Basically, it's a large, cumbersome, 3D menu that you maneuver your character through, and something that they definitely could have done without.
The missions would all be almost exactly the same if it wasn't for their different settings. The basic premise of each one is to go from point A to point B, unlocking a few doors along the way, and generally avoiding as many people as possible. Puzzles usually run along the lines of trying to find the code for each locked door, or sometimes to spice it up a bit, you have to find a key. Nothing here will do any serious brain damage.
Covertness is your best friend in this game, even though it is almost impossible. The level design just doesn't allow it. A lot of places force you to get in a fight in order to pass. You have the ability to flatten up against the wall, but this becomes a hindrance when a fight is going on. The walls seem almost sticky, and if you get too close, you'll automatically flatten up against it. Getting into a fight usually means losing over half your life and most of your ammunition, and that's just with one person. Your main weapon, a knife, is absolutely useless in open combat, but can kill people in one hit if they don't see you, and most of the guns have a rate of fire so slow that guards will be all over you after the first shot.
Enemy AI is sometimes non-existent, and sometimes they seem to break their programming and surprise you. Most of the time they are just mindless drones, though, put here and there to slow down your progress. Trying to figure out just exactly what they react to will cost you a few lives as gunfire, no matter how loud, doesn't seem to bother them most of the time, but movement will have them on you faster than you can say 'Feyd-Rautha Rabban'.