“Being human totally sucks most of the time. Videogames are the only thing that make life bearable.”
Ready Player One has been on my TBR list for a while now but the upcoming Spielberg movie adaptation raced it to the top of the pile- I could see my husband wanting to see the movie and I wanted to read it first. This is pretty heavily reviewed already on CBR so most people probably know the gist but here goes..:
In the not to distant future, year 2044, reality is bleak. The virtual utopia OASIS has replaced the real world for most people, including Wade Watts. The creator of OASIS died 5 years ago and created a hidden Easter egg that would lead to the winner receiving the bulk of his fortune. After years of searching Wade unlocks the first clue and begins a race against his own friends and an evil corporation to capture the big prize.
Wade, OASIS name Parvizal, is a poor kid living in a super sized trailer park in Oklahoma. He is super smart and scrappy. His only friend, who goes by Aech, is someone Wade has never met in person. Art3ims, a blogger, becomes close to Parvizal after they meet at the first clue location. Parvizal gets tangled up with the IOI, a huge corporation that will stop at nothing to win the prize, and has to use his exception skills to finish the contest first.
“That was when I realized, as terrifying and painful as reality can be, it’s also the only place where you can find true happiness. Because reality is real.”
It’s a cute, unique premise; eccentric billionaire JD Halliday grew up in the 1980’s and designed his competition around his favorite era. There are a lot of cute call backs that being an ’80s fan yourself will help understand. My biggest peeve was that it seemed that all anyone liked or paid attention to in the year 2044 was ’80s pop culture. Now I suppose if hundreds of billions of dollars was at stake and I needed to know everything about the 1950’s to win it I could get on board but it seemed a bit overkill. It’s like the world stopped in 2012 when OASIS was created. Parvizal, and to a certain extent Art3mis and Aech, are special snowflakes who seem to have an unending, encyclopedic knowledge of a decade 60 years in the past. If you can suspend your disbelief that people would spend 90% of their lives logged into a virtual realty you can probably believe that some kid whose grandparents probably weren’t alive to see WarGames in theaters would know every word by heart.