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Publisher's Summary

A riveting account of the birth and remarkable evolution of the most important development in entertainment since television, Replay is the ultimate history of video games. From its origins in the research labs of the 1940s to the groundbreaking success of the Wii, Replay sheds new light on gaming's past. Along the way it takes in the spectacular rise and fall of Atari, the crazed cottage industry spawned by the computers of Sir Clive Sinclair, Japan's rapid ascent to the top of the gaming tree, and the seismic impact of Doom. Replay tells the sensational story of how the creative vision of game designers across the globe gave rise to one of the world's most popular and dynamic art forms. Based on extensive research and more than 140 interviews, Replay includes insights from video game legends such as Atari founder Nolan Bushnell, Will Wright - the creator of The Sims , Doom designer John Romero, and Hironobu Sakaguchi of Final Fantasy fame. Replay also includes a foreword by Richard Garriott (AKA Lord British).

©2010 Tristan Donovan (P)2017 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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A Wonderful and Thorough Companion to Video Games

Focuses on all video games but covers the computer angle more thoroughly. Great narrator.
It's not as thorough on all the game consoles as "The Ultimate History of Video Games" but it branches more into computer games in the U. K. and many parts of Europe and gives a more thorough background into how computer culture influenced second generation consoles and on. Brings video games up to 2012 and the advent of indie games on Steam. "Ultimate History" ends with the death of Sega as a console producer. The two books complement each other nicely.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Excellent Book

I have quite a few gaming history books in my library but I think they are all Nintendo vs Sega and while the story is interesting it has been told numerous times. Replay on the other hand covers so many different topics (the European computer scene, arcades, etc..) that aren't covered that well elsewhere. The narrator is fantastic, great pacing, he just brought the book to life. I just can't recommend this book enough.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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This is the history to read.

Most books focus on the hardware and business. This is about that plus the art and the games. Very awesome book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Jeffrey
  • Round Rock, TX, United States
  • 10-26-17

A fine addition to my game history collection.

It gives me gratification that the area I chose to specialize in during my graduate studies - The history of games and simulations- is now getting serious attention. This book covers some of the same ground as others I have read, but still manages to deliver points and anecdotes missed elsewhere. Lots of direct quotes from game developers and designers, and a good narrative of the rise and fall of game styles and genres. Not sure if this is the performer or the nook text, but there are some errors like "Planescape: Torment" being referred to as "Planetscape" etc. Other than those small errors, I enjoyed this book thoroughly.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Perfect!

Loved it! was able to relive many memories just by listening to the words and the brief but detailed account of so many good (and not so good) games

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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the first four fifths of a book was great

the first 4/5 was great then you got into 2000s and it became just okay also I was hoping to learn more about what was happening in other countries from the opening description. yes there was a lot of good information about what was happening but it just seemed like there had to be more happening especially towards the 2000s

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  • Becky
  • Laguna Hills, CA, United States
  • 04-22-18

Petty good

A pretty decent coverage of the video games industry. Note, this is more about the industry itself rather than game mechanics, outside how major changes in game technology and new genres directed the industry as a whole. It is a good overview of where the game industry has come from, with major movements, breakthroughs and some of the culture that goes along with developers and gamers.

It begins with retro arcade games and ends with the Indi game movement. It does meander out of chronical order sometimes to follow a thread or key figure in the industry. It covers mostly AAA games or big budget games that flopped. Some major studios are absent from the book, but with the sheer number of studios, it's understandable. It was particularly nice to read more about game development movements in Europe and how Communism affected, and still affects, Russian gamer mentality.

The book isn't long enough to cover every topic, of course. There are a few areas that I felt the book didn't cover, or cover enough in depth. In no particular order, I feel these needed more attention, though some of these would require whole individual books dedicated to the subject: A history of ancient gaming, though a whole college course would be needed. Boardgames and how Kickstarter has made them more easily funded. Social media platform games such as Farmville, Cartown and Cow Clicker. Gamification experiments done with real world consequences, such as Sesame Credit in China. Chinese game development and restrictions on importing Western games into their market. Life in the industry and it's working conditions, such as the EASpouse lawsuit, crunch, burnout, it's high turnover rates from layoffs and a consequentially near nomadic lifestyle to find the next gig. Outsourcing asset creation and support to China and India. Indian gamers in general. And some of the very recent health games, where players have to work out to play, such as Pokemon Go and Zwift.

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very well researched

This book was very well written, researched, and in depth. I learned so much of what is under the good of what the video game market is and how it became. definitely a huge recommendation from me.

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complete comprehensive hishtoy of software games

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys the history of computers and gaming.

Who was your favorite character and why?

No specific character since it is more of a history story.

Have you listened to any of Gary Furlong’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I enjoy all of the history and specifically part of the history I remember from my own experiences.

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Pirates should not narrate books

I have a pretty wide tolerance for narration styles and voice types, but I have no idea what audible was thinking using this guy. He reminds me of the Saturday night live skit where the pirates club invites a guy named sarsguard just so they can say his name like a pirate. I’d buy again if they got someone else to do it.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • GS
  • 01-22-18

Great book, a little American

If you could sum up Replay in three words, what would they be?

ZEE EX Spectrum

Any additional comments?

Really enjoyed this fascinating look across the history of video games. Interesting American-centric fairly comprehensive and nicely divided into areas of gaming history. Pity the narrator cant pronounce sinclairs ZED X Spectum properly.. although sadly the UK machines are not covered enough to make this too grating,

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • W T NEWMAN
  • 09-09-17

ZED ZED ZED not zee X Spectrum !

Enjoyed but the narrators saying Zee X Spectrum and Zee X 81 just annoyed me. He pronounces other names fine but why not ZED ?

1 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Angelo Valdivia
  • 08-25-17

A more global take on video games history

Video games have a strong history in Japan and the US, particularly with hardware. But Europe was also significant with their impact, and what drives hardware is always the software. This book does well to tell many of the stories other books haven't.