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Sam Landstrom
In Print
AmazonEncore (2010)

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Checking Out a Boardgame

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian seeks miniature gaming happiness by checking out a sci-fi boardgame to see if it is worthy of being adapted for miniature gaming.

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This entry created 7 December 2011. Last revised on 5 September 2016.

3,451 hits since 7 Dec 2011
©1994-2023 Bill Armintrout
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Rating: gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star no star no star no star no star (6.00)

One of the delights of this novel is its intricate background, comprising a future utopia involving genetic engineering, robotic 'familiars', civil unions, and a new 'god' called the OverSoul.

However, since the author introduces the world gradually as capsule information leading into the early chapters, it would be a spoiler for me to say too much about the setting...

Perhaps it is enough to say this: In this future world, all of life (and work, and religion) has been combined into the Game - a way of making work fun, and making recreation beneficial for society, with everything assigned the appropriate point value. And yet this 'designed' society has its contradictions... and some amoral practices...

Wargamers may enjoy this novel as an exploration of turning the world into one giant rulesystem. Warfare is mentioned but does not take place in the story, but there is inspiration for a number of tactical scenarios involving humans, robots, and engineered humans.

The novel comes to a conclusion with an interesting revelation about this world and the protagonist, one which stuck with me for a few days of further contemplation. So MetaGame gets points for making me think, but I ultimately found the setting to be rather depressing.

(As the subject matter includes sexual topics - including sex servants and rape - I would not recommend this title for younger readers.)

Reviewed by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian.