When being a total geek is all you need to become a legend and filthy rich.
The world is bad (relate-able) but instead of progress people escape reality and into the Oasis, a virtual stimulation world used with visors. You can leave the life you are currently living and enter a different one as a different person, a “better version” of yourself. James Halliday, the creator of Oasis, created a game within the game before his death that would give the winner his entire inheritance.
Wade lives for the Oasis. Living in a trailer park with his drug addict aunt and psychotic boyfriend, Wade tries to find a way to escape and the Oasis allows that. Halliday is Wade’s idol and since the announcement of the game, Wade has learned everything there is to know about the creator. Along with everything Halliday ever loved, including favorite movies, games, songs, television shows etc. and in order to win you had to know just that.
The game is designed for the biggest and most loyal fan! The game went on and with no success the game was later theorized as a practical joke by Halliday. Wade, Parzival the name of his avatar continued to search. After 5 years since the game Parzival found the first key to the first game out of three. That sparked the world’s interest once again and the search began again but this time with a price for Wade’s life.
The game had a ton of nostalgic! Dungeons & Dragons, Pac-man, Rush, Blade Runner, Atari 2600, etc. The players had to know everything that Halliday has ever said, wrote, watched and played by heart. Including lines from those things too to help locate the final gate. Wade is a loner and the only friend is someone who he’s never even met in the real world. The game gives him purpose and although he is searching for the first key his expectation is one of denial.
The book was slow and didn’t pick up until more than half way. Thank God for audiobooks! After weeks of still reading the book I had to pick up the audio book to speed up the process and in hopes that I would enjoy it more. The audio book read by Will Wheaton was exactly what I needed and I have to say that if it weren’t for it I probably would have stopped reading it, which is a total fail for me!
Once it finally picked up I was intrigued and found I liked the characters. You were rooting for the under appreciated geeks! Although this was a game you see that if this were to happen in the real world people would act the exact same way and I mean people would go bat shit crazy!
One thing I loved was how I could relate to the dedication Wade and the rest of the players had when memorizing certain things. I know I can recite stuff from movies and shows because I loved them so much and watch them multiple times. It goes to show we are cool humans! This wasn’t because they wanted to find the prize, for most of them anyway, but it was something they enjoyed and made them feel like they belonged.
Overall I liked it and again I give some credit to the audio book as well!