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Reader Comments (87)

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 11:15AM mmorpgsux said

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No.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 11:41AM freebase said

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Why would I choose to read 2nd-rate authoring? There are better fiction writers out there than those who write for video games.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 12:58PM PacketBurner said

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@freebase
Actually they tend to put the 1st rate starwars novelists on these books now (even kemp isn't too bad) for starwars and have noted that most publishers are treating these like 'real books' now a days. Although i do remember the days when you could cringe at the game related novels its getting on par with the stuff in novels (for better or worse)

just IMO
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 1:43PM Kepal said

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@freebase That may have been the case, but I think we've come a long way from Star Wars Galaxies: The Ruins of Dantooine. *twitch*

The fact that studios are including the authors themselves in the game development stages seems to allow for a stronger front when the books/games are ultimately released. Drew Karpyshyn wrote KOTOR and is writing for TOR, so those games and the Revan novel have meshed/tied-in better; Karen Traviss went from writing tie-in novels for the Gears of War series to writing the story for the latest game, and I think it (the series) benefitted greatly from that.
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 1:50PM freebase said

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It's like American made cars. Sure they've gotten much better in recent years. But they're still second rate compared to imports.
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 5:20PM (Unverified) said

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@freebase - "Why would I choose to read 2nd-rate authoring?"

@PacketBurner - "Actually they tend to put the 1st rate starwars novelists on these books now"

Pretty sure you both just said exactly the same thing.
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 11:43AM Brianna Royce said

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Wow, you guys are naming novels for games I didn't even know has novels. Sweet, now I can feel even more like I'm missing out. :D No seriously, what a great resource! Thanks everyone!

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 11:43AM (Unverified) said

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No.

As far as I'm concerned it's an underhanded way to "monetize" a player base even more.
If I'm paying a monthly fee I expect the story to be in the actual game itself. If it's not my interest in that game lessens quite a bit. Cataclysm is a perfect example of this.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 11:44AM haagentazz said

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Since I've always been a huge fan of story in a game, I do read game novels, but usually only for the games I'm a "Super Fan" of (Guild Wars & SWTOR).

Any game writer worth their salt will flesh out the story in game so that the fans that didn't read the book(s) will have a complete picture of what's going on in game. Yet for the fans that read the books, they often have a more complete picture of everything else that's being affected/going on during those key junctures in the game based on info from the novel(s).

Personally, the novels helped weave together the events that players were a part of in Guild Wars/Knights of the Old Republic. They help to explain/set up the cultures, politics, people, etc. that we'll be affecting in the soon-to-be-released games. The novels also add depth and humanity to the characters and help to understand what the characters are thinking/what motivates them.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 11:55AM Lewa said

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Well thanks to Massively I've started to read the GW2 Novels (that contest for a copy of Destiny's Edge, I won one. Thanks again Massively). I ended up buying Ghost's of Ascalon. I love them. I would probably read some for other MMO's had I played any other MMO's with good novels.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 12:55PM real65rcncom said

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Do you read MMO novels?







Hardly ever I hate to say. I know companies want to draw you into the story to make you care about the characters you will meet or want to develop, but I've found that historically the writers they hire don't have any skill beyond telling a regular story.

Or the reverse happens where you read short stories and lore (as in the case of Rift before the game launched) about classes and some action or associated with them, then you play the game thinking like that and the gameplay is rather boring, flat and doesn't match the pre-story.


Rift let me down on this front.. some lore was really good and I couldn't wait to play but while playing the game, the lore parts simply didn't "pan out" to match what I was doing onscreen over time.


Tor is a bit different in that in the beta, the pre-lore matches PERFECTLY with what I saw in game. I actually got to interact with the female Jedi who was in all the videos. She spoke to ME and I spoke BACK choosing what I wanted to say to her (and let me tell you.. she wasn't happy with what my Jedi Warrior told her and let me know, lol) That actually put me in the right frame of mind where I wanted to play TOR.


Now I found myself reading more of the Wookiepedia lore about the Old Republic as I didn't know much about that and I'm finding.. I actually like it vs what 'professionals' say is bad writing by Lucas. The Sith family dynamic is far more interesting than I though.. (figured they'd be more like Klingons serving each other wolves and raw meat) but they are actually.. gasp.. people, with hopes, dreams and disappointments.


This is writing at it's best and makes playing games based on that much more interesting.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 12:56PM PacketBurner said

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I've read all the SwTor books published so far (got revan coming on snail mail from amazon... fingers crossed its here monday :( missed weekend delivery it seems) but i buy all the starwars novels. Yep i'm that sucker who reads about luke and his boy going on long strolls with sith about the galaxy for 3 books.

I just wish they would stop the year delay between hardback @ £12 a book and let us have the cheap paperbacks. i have no will power

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 5:40PM (Unverified) said

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@PacketBurner I tend to get my books in Kindle format from Amazon. In Canada, the Kindle price at release is usually around the same as the paperback in a year, or less in a lot of cases since a basic paperback is still $13 and I can usually score the book brand new for around $10 for my Kindle. Since there are apps for phones and computers and I spend so much time in front of screens anyway...
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 1:01PM real65rcncom said

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THIS is why I don't read Chinese lore regarding games and such:

http://www.happyplace.com/3654/chinese-translation-gives-batman-new-origin-story

I'm sure if I read THIS pre-lore before playing DCUO, I would have a totally different opinion of Batman (and even Spiderman haha)

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 1:09PM Spacegrass said

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No, I take myself too seriously to read books based on video games.

Seriously though, I think authors have a lot more room for creativity when they're not working within the constraints of a setting designed with game mechanics in mind. Authors should create their own settings.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 5:55PM PacketBurner said

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@Spacegrass
I totally agree and the first two SwTor books i read you could see where they writers where told what powers etc they had to "work" into the story. Then again i'm a massive fan of W40k where it feels comforting as a fan fiction writer to have all this pre existing and wonderous lore around to use and shape your own story.

I guess its the difference between background and rules
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 1:16PM (Unverified) said

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Long ago, when young, I enjoyed the original Dragonlance novels - but I fear to destroy my fond memories by rereading them. Otherwise I avoid franchised novels/settings.

I did read the two GW2 novels though. Decent writing, but bad plots and uninteresting characters (in fact, I dislike the 5 "iconics" more after reading EoD). I feel the style is written more to 12-16 year olds? Especially the dialog seems to be like a dub of the more shallow animes. Note, I don't think deep = lots of complex dialog, good artists can convey depth with less, but less isn't always more. ;)

The GW2 novels also don't really provide that much background lore. Its mostly already known if you half pay attention to the info releases from Anet (and generally, if you're buying the books, you're probably that kind of fan already). There's a few new details, but even those will probably (almost have to) be contained within the game itself.

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 1:17PM (Unverified) said

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@(Unverified)

One more point - the GW2 books had to many obvious references to game mechanics, especially Edge of Destiny.
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 2:32PM Daemodand said

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I'll bet some people read MMO novels by skimming as fast as possible to the last few pages, then read those pages over and over...

Posted: Dec 3rd 2011 3:21PM (Unverified) said

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I've heard those are some of the better books out there in the Star Wars line, but for some reason I just haven't taken to the novels like I have with the films, games, or even graphic novels. I've decided that I like the aesthetics of the universe enough that reading about it doesn't fly. I've been told the audio books tend to be a full on multimedia experience so maybe I'll check those out.

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