Four people played the Dune board game for over 85 hours to raise money for Alzheimer’s research and to break a world record.
A group of tabletop gamers have successfully set a new world record for the longest time playing a board game – with occasional breaks – after an 85 hour-long session of Dune. (Thanks BBC) Lea Poole, Dale Poole, Adam Bircher and Luke de Witt Vine came together to play the movie board game with the goal of surpassing the previous Guiness World Record, which had been set by a group in the Netherlands who had played a board game for around 80 hours in January 2017.
The conditions for setting the record meant that the group could gain five minutes of break time for every hour they played, with the players relying on snacks throughout the challenge rather than having entire meals. A total of 79 games of Dune were played over the course of the 85-hour session, with the group deciding to finish their final game even when they had successfully reached their goal on Monday night.
An audience gathered to watch the group play both in-person and online, with the four players encouraging onlookers to donate to Alzheimer’s Research UK, a charity that’s dedicated to investigating the causes of Alzheimer’s and Dementia with the aim of providing “life-changing” treatment to people suffering from both by 2025. The group chose to raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK since Lea and Dale Poole’s father has the condition himself, with the team successfully fundraising around £1,000 ($1128) for the charity, alongside Herefordshire Mind – a local mental health non-for-profit organisation.
Dune was originally published by Avalon Hill in 1979, before receiving a remake in 2019 by Gale Force Nine – the studio responsible for the co-op board game Aliens: Another Glorious Day in the Corps. In Dune, two to six players each take control of a faction featured in Frank Herbert’s series of popular sci-fi books, with the aim of winning control of the lucrative Spice trade on the planet Arrakis. Each leader of each faction has its own unique ability and access to different resources that players must utilise against their opponents.
Throughout the game, players will look for ways of overcoming their opponents in battle, taking control of parts of Arrakis and otherwise disrupting their plans. As their troops travel across the planet, they will have to be wary of the enormous worms that populate its sands and attempt to gather as much precious Spice as they can. A streamlined version of the game, called Dune: A Game of Conquest and Diplomacy, was published last year to coincide with the release of the new Dune film directed by Denis Villeneuve.
The Guinness Book of World Records is yet to ratify Lea Poole, Dale Poole, Adam Bircher and Luke de Witt Vine’s attempt to set a new record for the longest time playing a board game.