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Book Title: 1001: Video Games You Must Play Before You Die|
The author of the book: Tony Mott
Date of issue: October 7th 2013
ISBN 13: 9781844037667
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 35.15 MB
Read full description of the books 1001: Video Games You Must Play Before You Die:★★★½
I really wanted to like this book more. It's glossy, nicely put together, fun to flip through, generally well-written, and most entries are accompanied by attractive color screenshots. Some entries evoked nostalgia, and there's also a number of games I'd never heard of that I now want to check out because of their mentions here.
But...the book posits itself not just as a collection of 1001 'must-play' games, but as a chronological catalog of the *evolution* of video games. This is stated in the introduction, and seen in numerous entries that give caveats about, say, an early game's primitive gameplay or graphics, but still note a game's historical importance. Given this, there's a number of gaps and inaccuracies that take go beyond 'acceptable idiosyncrasies of personal taste on part of the editor' and into WTF land.
*Nit-picking nerd ranting follows*
Bizarrely missing: the original Adventure, and Ultima IV. Adventure (aka Colossal Cave) was the first, well, adventure game ever -- an all-text, parser-based affair that invented a genre. That genre had its commercial hey-day in the '80s (thousands of titles published) and is still sustained today with a very active fan community as "interactive fiction" (see the documentary Get Lamp for a look at all that history). Adventure's obvious influence is seen in how a number of other entries in the book reference it, even though it is sadly without an entry.
Ultima IV took the unprecedented step of being an epic RPG in which there was no grand baddie to beat. There was still a huge world to explore and a variety of evil monsters to route, but the ultimate goal was to improve yourself by following ethical principles, becoming an example for the people of the land by attaining Avatar-hood (as opposed to robbing all the town-folk blind and slaughtering town guards left & right, which was the norm for the RPGs of the day (earlier Ultimas included)). The game also established the the expansive geography of Britannia which remained constant through the series up to and including Ultima Online. The CRPGAddict blog has a good series of posts that investigate the innovations of this game.
The original Adventure and Ultima IV are such oft-cited and obvious landmarks in the history of video games that leaving them out is somewhat akin to forgetting to mention Gilgamesh and The Odyssey when listing the great works of Western literature from the B.C. days.
Other head-scratchers: the entire contribution of Activision to Atari 2600 gaming being represented by H.E.R.O. (as opposed to say, Pitfall). Wizardry is neglected completely, it could have stood for the 'popularizing D&D gameplay in the 8-bit era'' game that the Ultima I entry stands for (that entry rightly complains of how this first Ultima's gameplay is rather lame -- so why not include Ultima IV instead?). The Art of War, one of the earliest if not the very first real-time strategy game (in the Warcraft / Starcraft gameplay sense), is also absent. All those game I've mentioned are totally uncontroversial as innovative classics. These other omissions might be chalked up to its overemphasis on recent games in the overall selection pool.
Then there are historical slips like not mentioning Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak's role in developing Breakout for Atari, and saying that the Atari 2600 Adventure game was a translation of the Adventure game, when what was interesting about it was that it mutated the gameplay of that text adventure into a visual format, inventing the action-adventure genre (paving the way for Zelda and beyond), making it real-time and changing all most every aspect of the original's content.
Finally, there are a *few* entries that make it clear through questionable descriptions that the entry writer was depending on secondary sources instead of actually playing the game in question, which on top of just being sad, also casts some doubt on the accuracy of the entries of games I'm unfamiliar with.
So, as a book that's fun for a video game fan to browse through, it succeeds. But as video game history or the super-cool reference guide it could have been, it falls short.
Read information about the authorTony Mott was born in Brasov, Romania in 1970. Her pen name was chosen to honor her grandfather, as Mott was her mother’s maiden name.
2008 was the year of her debut on book shelves, with a novel telling the story of a woman who escaped the totalitarian Communist regime and returned after the latter’s fall in 1989.
Shy but steady at first - and with growing audacity in time –her writing affair with the crime novel genre started with “Together Apart” Doi, published in 2012 at Tritonic Publishing House. Two years later was published “Juliet had a gun” Julieta avea un pistol, first part of the Juliet novel series, with the sophomore “A bullet for Juliet” Un glont pentru Julieta hitting bookstores last year, in 2016, same publishing house.
She brings to life stories about the medical industry: discoveries, challenges and crimes. She is well known for her novels, but she has some affairs with poetry and short stories, even flash stories.
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