Ready Player One Review, Press Start


Ernest Cline spoke to a ravenous crown at Comic Con, San Diego in 2017

By: Colin Thompson, reporter

If you are a massive pop culture nerd, you are probably infatuated with all kinds of books, movies, and video games.  If you are, then here’s a book I’m sure you’ll get a kick out of.

Ready Player One is a story that takes place in the year 2045, where the world has divulged into utter chaos. A global energy crisis, mass poverty, war, and just about every other bad thing are happening all at once. Although, there is one place people go to escape reality, the OASIS, a massive VRMMORPG where you can be and do anything you want. The creator of the OASIS, James Halliday, has since died and decided to leave his inheritance to whoever can find a hidden “Easter Egg” he put into the game before his death. The contest has the players solve riddles based on 80’s Pop Culture. Our main character, Parzival AKA Wade Watts, has spent the last 5 years searching for the egg as a Gunter(Egg Hunter) before the evil corporation Innovative Online Industries(IOI); which wishes to turn the OASIS into a corporate theme park.

Ready Player One is rated for kids 12+, but I believe this to be far too generous and think that this book shouldn’t be read by anyone who isn’t in High School yet. The book is filled with curse words and inappropriate material. The author, Ernest Cline, is clearly one of the biggest mega nerds in history. Player Ready One book is filled to the brim with 80’s Pop Culture. Off the top of my head, I remember Ladyhawke, WarGames, Ultraman, Monty Python, and Neon Genesis Evangelion. The book won an Alex Award from the American Library Association, the 2011 Prometheus Award, and is currently a New York Time’s Best Seller. This is the first book in a series as Cline recently released the sequel dubbed Ready Player Two. The genre is Sci-Fi, but can also fall under the categories of Dystopian and Pop Culture Fiction. In 2018, it received a film adaptation that was directed by legendary director, Steven Spielberg.

The book dives into the human psyche and explores the human desire to escape reality. Much of the population of the Earth is not in a good situation, so they obviously want to go somewhere where they don’t have to deal with their problems. This reflects a lot of the problems in the world today, as most people prefer to turn a blind eye to problems and live in blissful ignorance. It also shows how some people are willing to do anything to achieve a goal, seen in IOI as they often do immoral acts. While this message is very cliche and played out, it still comes across fairly well. Also, I think that the riddles in the story were a little too cryptic. While not affecting the story, it would have been fun to try to solve the messages yourself, I certainly tried. But they were often very obscure references that needed an encyclopedia’s worth of knowledge to figure out. But all in all, I’d say you should give this a read, regardless if you are a nerd or not. I had a lot of fun reading it, considering I don’t personally enjoy reading books.