At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut - part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.
It’s the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place.
Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of 10,000 planets.
And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune - and remarkable power - to whoever can unlock them.
For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday’s riddles are based in the pop culture he loved - that of the late 20th century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday’s icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes’s oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig.
And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle.
Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt - among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life - and love - in the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.
A world at stake.
A quest for the ultimate prize.
Are you ready?
©2011 Ernest Cline (P)2011 Random House Audio
"Ready Player One is the ultimate lottery ticket." (New York Daily News)
“An exuberantly realized, exciting, and sweet-natured cyber-quest. Cline’s imaginative and rollicking coming-of-age geek saga has a smash-hit vibe.” (Booklist)
"This adrenaline shot of uncut geekdom, a quest through a virtual world, is loaded with enough 1980s nostalgia to please even the most devoted John Hughes fans… sweet, self-deprecating Wade, whose universe is an odd mix of the real past and the virtual present, is the perfect lovable/unlikely hero.” (Publishers Weekly)
Decently engaging representation of immersive mmorpgs. I probably didn't get the most out of it since I'm kinda neutral about '80's pop culture. Listeners/readers with more investment in and knowledge of the '80's scene will probably love this book.
I'd recommend it with the caveat that they'll need to swallow a few straw-men premises in the first few chapters before they get into the actual story (imminent danger of fossil fuel use and the representation of corporations as irredeemably evil come to mind) . I can think of a few other, less caricature-filled, stories of mmo's I'd recommend before this one because they don't have such heavy-handed starting premises (which are debatable, if not largely disprovable).
He brings Wil Wheaton's voice. You can tell he loves the book's obsession with the '80's, but the fact that I kept seeing Wil Wheaton's face through most of the book got a bit distracting at times (shouldn't be a problem if you don't know who he is, etc). He articulates the emotions well.
When a certain protagonist finds a certain copper key...
I really did enjoy the book once it got into the actual drama surrounding the game, after it gets past the opening hypotheticals. However, they were so arguable/disprovable that the book never/rarely feels like it could happen the way he sets it up.
I loved the story. it was very well thought out and imaginative. Don't want to be negative bit could we leave out the anti religion.
Just could not put the audiobook down. Was well-paced, detailed descriptions throughout. So many name-drops in the story - games, movies, shows and authors - very lovingly-written.
I enjoyed most of this book. The plot and narration are great but the 80s references were over the top and took me out of the story a bit. Don't let that stop you from getting this book however.
As someone who isn't a huge fan of video games I was skeptical of this book. But it was amazing. So fun and engaging. Hit on subjects that are true in today's world as well as some possible future outcomes. Give it a shot because you will probably be really happy you did
Wil Weaton is uniquely qualified to narrate this geek culture fueled adventure. It was fun to listen to and I was completely immersed in the author's world. This book is light sci-fi fantasy and tons of fun for someone who remembers Atari games, D&D, and 80s movies.
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