Monday, August 04, 2014

Ready Player One

Read Player One is set in 2044. However, it really feels more like 2010 meshed with the 1980s with a few "futuristic bits" thrown in. Clearly the author grew up in the 80s and enjoyed the classic video games of those days. Modern video games don't play a huge role.

The novel starts with the death of a major video game designer. He is a billionaire who made a fortune from this game (and even the associated schools.) However, he died without any heirs. There are however, easter eggs in his famous video game, Oasis, and whoever finds them first, inherits his money. The novel is the story of the boy who found it.

It seemed like a great topic, but it wasn't executed well. The setting just wasn't convincing. Laptops? Really. Those probably wont make it to 2020 let alone 2040s. I liked the 80s games, and could see this as an alternate universe where we just went straight from that. But this setting is not convincing. Some of the philosophizing and language gets tiring also. It does, however, succeed as an 80s nostalgia piece. Just turn off the part of your brain that wants something at least remotely believable and you'll be entertained.

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