Wednesday, November 12, 2014

God is a Gamer - Book Review


Author: Ravi Subramaniam
Publishers:Penguin books India
Genre: Crime Thriller


I am getting a deja vu as I read this book. I look into the archives and find the review I wrote for the author's previous book
http://www.vevisia.com/2012/11/the-bankster-by-ravi-subramaniam-book.html

I almost feel I am reading the same thing with different names and obviously different settings. We still have the banking and the financial background and now we have the additional gaming and virtual currency thrown in.

I wont boost of my gaming know-how too much but I am indirectly in this world. I can proudly say that I am game designer wife and every dinner table conversation in my house is about monetisation, gameplay ,hooks and level designing. I have seen the progess of games from console to mobile to social as my husband progressed through them all.  It is a very exciting dinner table conversation I tell you. I wouldnt ever bring my own office talk home.

Anyways, that is just to say that I can review this book with some form of knowledge in the gaming industry. I hate Zynga games and the social games overall though. I am still a AOE console player.

Coming back to the book, it is interesting to say the least. Lot of locations, lot of nationalities and loads of different characters bombard you from the get go. It isnt a simple read. You need to invest some memory to remember all the characters in the book to keep track of the fast paced events happening almost in every few pages.

The story is crisp and interesting but in most parts very predictable. But I didnt feel like putting down the book or not finishing it. I dont finish books just out of compulsion.

Enough big names and designations are thrown in with seeming ease and it kind of hooks you. The bitcoins and the cotton trail web elements are intriguing to an extent. But again almost identical to the previous book, none of the character really appeals to me. The characters run the plot but do nothing to stay on in my mind. I don't remember many names too. Maybe that is a flaw in a story which runs not on the people's perspective but on events happening around them.

The technical terms used in the book are never overwelming. Even though, I am a technical person, I dont really like books to be too heavy on technical jargon. Effortlessly, the writer takes us into the world of bitcoins , TOR , Credit card systems and social gaming and one feels totally at ease with all of them.
A reader is exposed to a new world which usually people dont know or think much about. The drug world and the cotton trail website used for drugs and prostitution actually made me think of it. I know everything can be done on the net but I never really thought of it too seriously.

Overall a good attempt but I am hoping for a fresher and new approach towards the next book Mr. Subramanyiam comes up with. I am already looking forward to it.

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