With a full cast production, this highly-entertaining dramatization of the award-winning military science fiction story Ender's Game will wow fans as well as listeners new to this classic. Using an original screenplay written by Orson Scott Card himself, the audioplay takes listeners through Battle School with prodigy Ender Wiggin.
The cast fleshes out their characters with full personalities and motivations - in particular, the actors who portray the children at Battle School do a wonderful job in bringing out their precociousness and fading innocence. The action scenes are brisk and electrifying, and listeners will be swept up in the events of the story.
Audie Award Finalist, Multi-Voiced Performance, 2014
Audie Award Finalist, Original Work, 2014
Experience Ender's Game as you've never heard it before! With an all-new, original script written by Orson Scott Card, Ender's Game Alive is a full cast audio drama that reimagines the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning classic.
Ender’s Game Alive puts you into Battle School with young Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, as he trains to become the general who will lead Earth against the Formics, the alien "buggers". Removed from his family at the age of six, Ender must prove his strength and his leadership, even as he fights his own doubts. The stakes are nothing less than the fate of humankind.
Ender's Game Alive is performed by Kirby Heyborne, Stefan Rudnicki, Theodore Bikel, Scott Brick, Samantha Eggar, Harlan Ellison, Susan Hanfield, Roxanne Hernandez, Janis Ian, Rex Linn, Richard McGonagle, Jim Meskimen, Emily Rankin, John Rubinstein, Christian Rummel, and a full cast.
Directed by Gabrielle de Cuir
Original Score by John Rubinstein
Valentine's Theme by Janis Ian
Additional music and arrangements by Mark Mitchell
©2013 Orson Scott Card (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
“Listeners will feel surrounded by Card's sophisticated, high-stakes universe. With a stately musical score and video-game sound effects, this "re-imagined" production sticks close to the novel while offering listeners an entertaining new way to enjoy one of science fiction's best loved stories.” (AudioFile)
So it should be noted that this is a relatively abridged version of the Ender's game novel. I miss the details from the original story. Also, some of the sound effects are a bit... awkward. For instance, the scene where Bernard is hitting Ender in the space shuttle on their way to battle school... it sort of sounds like someone is slapping a ham. There are a number of awkward moments like this.
I'm not sure how well the story came out always being told via dialogue. Some of the dialogues in particular come off as unnatural. For example any scene where Graff is describing Ender's actions in the Mind Game aloud. This is for the sake of the listener, but as a conversation between characters, it just sounds awkward and it constantly brought me out of the story. Also, I found myself missing a lot of the events from the original book, for instance Peter and Valentines antics on Earth.
The performances are inconsistent, some are good, Ender, Valentine, etc, but some performances, specifically of lesser characters, are flat.
No. Stick to books. OSC an amazing author, but Ender's Game the movie was a disappointment, and this "audio play" was sub par when compared to all of the other OSC books which have been made into audio books.
Buy the original!
First off, I must say that this audio rendition of Ender's Game was very well done. The acting, the sound engineering, the inflections, they were all very, very good.
The story was compelling, and while I know some people find the concept that Ender is a genius is a bit of a stretch (they don't find his tactics that amazing), I prefer to look at the way the concepts are brought into the book, and this is well done.
I did not feel this was an audiobook, more like a radio theatre production of a book. There are no "he said" or "she said" lines in the book, and description is given by characters doing exposition for the benefit of another character. I find that in the more whimsical parts of the book, such as the Giant's Drink portions this becomes somewhat awkward as you wonder why they are speaking about something everyone is seeing.
I also felt that any group laughter, especially when it was a large group of people such as a class, felt forced or artificial. Again, it's the nature of the beast, you can imagine things to sound as realistic as you want it but when you need to show someone, they will inevitably feel let down.
On the whole, however, I feel this was extremely well done. The sound effects were not overplayed, the exposition was handled as well as it could be, and while some of the detail must have been lost in the format used here, it was to be expected and was handled gracefully.
Only if they have already read the original and are familiar with the story enough to not need all the inner dialoge that is missing from this story.
Although entertaining there is a lot missing from this book that is in the original.
not for me. I can see how people would enjoy this but I prefer the original. The story is missing too much.
Full cast recording is a very interesting way to listen to a book. Very cool.
While, I liked the performance aspect, the music at every chapter gets annoying very quickly. The plot was predictable, and although Sci-Fi isn't my normal choice, it was interesting enough that I finished the book instead of putting it down.
The original audiobook was soooo good! I was therefor excited to see that in anticipation of the movie, there was a full cast audio-play done. Then, after ordering it, I felt cheated.
In order of annoyance...
First this is an abridged version, if you haven't read/listened to the original, you'll miss a major part of the story (the subplot and interplay of Peter and Valentine for example).
Second - the audio-engineering - there are many parts of the story that have sound effects or dialog that is so soft that, unless you're listening in a sound proof box, you won't hear. I listen to audiobooks on my iPod using both in the ear and over the ear headphones and I couldn't hear the soft bits because of background noise (car, public transport, home).
Third the pointless musical interludes between chapters. Many of these are up to a minute long. Here's why this is a problem - if you ever have to search for the place you left off (at least on an iPod) each jump to a chapter start will require listening to the bloody music for a minute before you get any dialog allowing you to determine if you've heard that part yet. A minor addition to this problem, the chapters are not announced at the start of each chapter so you'll have no idea unless you can look at the display on your device.
Fourth - a minor point but for some reason a lot of Spanish has crept in to the dialog. I'm not at all sure it adds to the story and, for me anyway, I was left wondering why?
I'm sorry to be cynical, but this production left me thinking that this audio-play was slapped together in an attempt to cash in on the hype around the upcoming movie.. While I do intend on seeing the movie, I really hope it's done better than this... I'm not faulting the actors, they worked with what they had.
Try and involve Ender more, the story was too third person and I couldn't sympathize with the main character as much as I did with the original book.Also, in the original audiobook, when the adults were talking it sounded like most of the time It was Col.Graf talking and it was weird when parts I thought were said by him are said by a character I never even knew or thought existed. I am not sure if the original book was just Col.Graf and his lines were parted up for new characters. Or if those characters were in the original and I just did not realize it.I also would have not cut so many of the battles from battle school.
Not sure. Without the insights of the character's thoughts, it was a much different book. There were new ideas and changed scenarios in the play that I was so use to in the book it felt like I was listening to a lie.
not much. The performance was pretty good. but when compared to something like "We’re Alive: A Story of Survival" It just was not the experience I was expecting. Also a lot of the laughter really felt forced and stopped to suddenly.
Movie comes out tomorrow...
The play felt like a 3rd companion to the original book like how Ender's shadow was. This time it felt like I was seeing things through the teacher's and all the supporting casts perspective. Ender felt really uninvolved.I don't know what would be better... Is this better listened too without reading/listening to the original novel. I feel spoiled because I know the original book and this fell short of my expectations. Or would it be worse for people who did not read the original book and would not know what was going through ender's head during the story. I am not even sure if people who have not read the original would be able to really follow the story or appreciate Ender's situation.*small spoiler alert*Also... it is interesting that the flash suits were also the guns now by shaping your hands like kids would when play cops and robbers... But that seems wrong and anti-military. Unless the actual trained soldiers during that time had gloves that acted like guns that fired shots from their index finger, None of them were getting proper training in aiming with a firearm. I know they were being trained to be Pilots/commanders and not much actual soldier training was required and tactical training was what they needed. But It does not seem like something the military would skip to teach and something that would hinder the battle school kids in the future when ...*Spoiler for sequels*they begin to actually participate in actual firefights.
If you haven't read/listened to Ender's Game the book, you might enjoy this production. However, the full cast production doesn't, IMHO, generate the imaginative world the book does. In fact, I don't think it can. So much of the tenor of the book is dependent upon internal dialogue to set the stage for the action line of the story. While the full cast version tried to accomplish this, to some extent, by side dialogues of the external monitors, the slowly maturing internal "person" of Ender is critical and essential to the full force of the story.
There may books that transfer well to full cast productions. But it will depend greatly on the structure of the book. I will be very hesitant to try full cast productions.
Nothing. Sorry, it just didn't click.
they don't call the buggers buggers they call them formics audio play is intermixed with the audio book. (same narration) So far no giant game. lots of stuff seeming cut.
call the buggers buggers NOT formics put the "giant game" back in.
this would be fine for people who aren't Ender fans but for the hard caore fans you may want to pass.
I like the other unabridged verse a lot better. The Actors were good. The 30 seconds of music between the chapters is a little odd.
I really tried to love this copy. But when they cut out parts that you were looking forward to listening to. it is hard to like.
I have to admit that when this arrived on the Audible site with the first 4 chapters free for preview, I quickly got them, listened, and then purchased the entire play because I was interested in the outcome with the movie then opening soon. After listening I know that I'll just wait for the movie DVD/Blu-Ray release in a few months.
I gave it 4 stars across the board because while yes I liked it, I didn't love it and had a few gripes with it.
Gripe 1- The biggest problem I had with this version and the same that I've read the movie deals with too, Ender being 6 years old! The actor playing him in this version sounded to me like late teens to mid twenties, and while the original book may have the Ender character speaking the way he does, a 6 year old WOULD NOT speak in that manner, genius or not!
Gripe 2- Many of the voice actors for the 'students' sounded like they were played by female voice actors, even if they were male, and I often lost track of was the interaction being talked about between two boys or a boy and a girl, only to find it was supposed to be between to males.
Gripe 3- The background story sound effects were too quiet! If I was listening while driving I couldn't hear them at all!
Gripe 4- And the one that I've read hurt the movie version, this is NOT a kids story! The cruelty and physiological cruelty towards supposed little kids and teens is excessive. Having the 'hero' considerably older than 6 would have made it more palatable in my opinion, worked more reasonably with the written dialog and the overall outcome could easily have been the same in the book with Ender about 17 to 20. But then that was the writers choice, and my gripes or similar ones may even have been voiced back in 1986.
And I do like full cast audio plays too! I listen to old time radio shows and used to enjoy and get ideas of Audible purchases from "Book Radio" before it was ripped from the air, although I liked the old name of 'Sonic Theater' better! I even used to listen to many of Orson Scott Card based Sci-Fi programs on that channel.
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