Sunday, November 11, 2018

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

A very popular book with a wide fan base.

The world is a pretty desolate place. There is practically just one escape valve, Oasis, a virtual reality simulation which is used by everyone for everything. The creator of the systems has died and in his will he left the sole ownership of Oasis and about a billion dollars to the first person who solves a series of riddles based on 1980s video games and popular movies.

But there is an evil company IOI, that wants to take control of the Oasis and fill it with advertisements and paid content. It has recruited whole departments of people to work on the puzzle - and they are extremely ruthless against people showing progress on the task.

The book is pretty simplistic. The IOI company is unreasonably evil and apparently purely bad. The beginning of the book felt a bit slow and not well written, but when the pace quickened, it really quickened. I felt a little old for the book. Most, (or practically all) the games were familiar, but as I was already over twenty when they came out, they really weren’t a great overwhelming passion for me, neither was I used watch 80s movies over and over. On the other hand, an over page of description of how the adventure game Zork is controlled felt like dumbing it down and was probably meant for kids who had never played text-based adventure games.

When I was reading I thought this material would work much better as a movie, so as soon I finished it I placed an order for a blu-ray version of the recent Spielberg version of the story. It was already on sale which doesn’t bode well, but I’ll see. Anyway, an entertaining read, at least the last third.

374 pp.

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