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Monthly Archives: April 2012

Well I have survived yet another encounter with those “Doom” books. Yeesh, they apparently do NOT enjoy being discarded (or being made fun of in a blog post). After their last sneak attack I figured I was going to be knee deep in the dead from the aftermath! They have been contained though and banished to the depths of a used bookstore where they can torture some other unsuspecting soul.

The rest of my video game book collection seems to be behaving itself at the moment. Honestly though, aside from a few messes from some of the crappier ones, most of them are not half bad. As I said before, the books that either go into more detail or explore parts of a game not explained, those books are the ones that tend to shine. A great example of that kind of book are the “Halo” series.

Comprising nearly seven books in all, the series does not suffer from the “been there, played that” syndrome. A few of the books do rehash the events of the game but since most people did not have time to explore the scenery it fills in the parts you missed. The books even do a good job of explaining how Sgt. Johnson survived the first game and made his continued appearances throughout the series. You get to see how the Covenant found humanity and the different acts and sacrifices the remaining Spartans make. The story of Kurt, told in “Ghosts of Onyx,” is remarkably well told. You gain a much deeper understanding of the inner workings of ONI and honestly, reading about the NOVA bomb going off just makes me warm and fuzzy on the insides (nearly as warm and fuzzy as the Covenant were on the outside).

The “Starcraft” books on the other hand are hit or miss when it comes to quality. The first three had one great one in “Liberty’s Crusade” but were only mediocre in “Shadows of the Xel’Naga” and “Speed of Darkness.” I have not read “Queen of Blades” or “Nova” as of yet but the “Dark Templar Saga” trilogy really hooked me. The only thing that I dislike is that so far Blizzard has not really integrated these characters back into their games aside from the Nova character. Now I could be wrong and this could change when “Heart of the Swarm” gets released but I would like to see some more of these characters in a media other than books. Even if it is just a passing reference such as what you see in the “Mass Effect” games, showing the interconnectedness gives more credibility to the other media and makes it feel truly a part of the canon.

Speaking of canon; that brings me to the final set of books in my gaming set which are the “Descent” series by Peter Telep. I loved the books but honestly, other than the setting, I could not tell you how the books connected to the game. This was a case where the game itself had so little plot other than blowing up stuff that the author had to create a universe around it. Telep does a fantastic job doing so and the books are quite enjoyable, but “Descent” it is not. Granted it is rather hard to give you that same feeling of spinning and shooting in 3D that the game gave you in a book but I do give Telep points for trying.

For my last post in this series, I will give you a listing of all of the game tie-ins I can find and where you can get them. There will also be a review of any of the ones I have via a 1-10 system with 5 being the mid-range. It is hard for me to recommend NOT buying a book but you will be seeing that soon.

Let me know your favourite gaming reads and I will try to feature them here as well!

(Side Note: I just found this old article I’d written and I am reposting it…I might actually have to do a Part 3 like I said [even though it is 1/15/2020 at the time I write this!])

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