A few years ago, I started to take an interest in Virtual Reality. Even before the first major headsets hit the market people were bringing up the book Ready Player One. It kept coming up in interview after interview. It was described as Willy Wonka meets the Matrix and an inspiration to people working in the field. Fast forward to Comic-Con this year and a teaser was released for the movie adaptation. It showed a dystopian future so bad that most people were trying to escape it via VR. It was also loaded with pop culture references. Picture movies like Wreck-It Ralph and Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Now picture a VR world filled with your favorite pop culture icons. In this world, you could be racing a Delorean in a massive multiplayer death race against vehicles like Kaneda’s bike from Akira and the van from A-Team. The next minute you could be dancing in a club with Harley Quinn and Deathstroke. After seeing all of this, I finally had to read the book.
Ready Player One is one of the best books I have ever read. It is a must-read for anyone who grew up on the internet. By that, I mean people who use the internet as the main form of entertainment. The book is about Wade Watt who is a teen growing up in a world devastated by war and an energy crisis. The poor live in makeshift housing like the ‘stacks’ Wade lives in. The stacks are trailer homes that are literally stacked on each other to save space. To avoid the harsh reality that is the real world most people spend their time in the OASIS. The OASIS is a VR universe that is like the internet. You can do everything from work, play, and attend school in the OASIS. It works kind of like a free to play game and anyone can access it. You can earn money, level up, own virtual property and do almost anything you can do in real life.