Top critical review
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A tale of gaming gold-rush ambition
on 21 June 2011
I like books about people and I like books about computers and I like computer games. This has to be the perfect book for me, doesn't it?
First of all, I've lived through the computer evolution described in the book, saw at least some of the games mentioned in the book, either at the time they were released, or soon after and at that time I played a lot of computer games, but never really saw the huge pull of Wolfenstein/Doom/Quake as described in the book. So basically I'm no hardcore gamer out to shoot up the world.
The book is very well written and the story of people doing well in the gold rush of the home computer is right up my street. I congratulate the author on writing in a great style and really going into a lot of detail about those early days.
This book would be great, but I found that I really couldn't empathise with the main protagonists and I became very bored with their struggles. They aren't really people I'd want to meet or to have worked with (this isn't a prerequisite for me to enjoy reading a book, but I became distinctly apathetic towards them). Despite struggling to get through the book, I really lost the interest in their story part of the way through and couldn't make it to the end without just skimming through chunks of the book. I think it eventually came down to not being interested in people who shoved everything aside to write computer games, without too much care for anything else. It didn't really matter to me that they ended up riding around in fancy cars and living in big houses.
I can't see myself recommending this book to anybody I know and it's not because of the author, or the writing, or even the subject matter, but simply not being able to build any empathy for the main protagonists.