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#1 Posted by SneakyJB (44 posts) -

Wasn't sure if this belonged in General but it seems like Off-Topic is more appropriate. I'm an avid reader and over the summer have been finishing up my backlog of books to read.

For some reason I have always enjoyed video game novels. Some of them are wonderful for filling out the lore of a particular world while others just contain a lot of action. So I am looking for some new game novels to add to my list.

So far I have read many of the "Halo" novels and a few "Metal Gear" novels. Any recommendations would be wonderful!

#2 Edited by mjk0104 (208 posts) -

If you liked the story in Myst, the novels aren't too bad, a bit slow, but enjoyable.

#3 Posted by BigJeffrey (5078 posts) -

Witcher / Gears

#4 Posted by TheBrokenPinion (113 posts) -

Allan Wake was not to bad

#5 Posted by TheRealMoot (399 posts) -

The first resident evil novel "The umbrella incident" is great. Nice and short too.

#6 Posted by SneakyJB (44 posts) -

@mjk0104 said:

If you liked the story in Myst, the novels aren't too bad, a bit slow, but enjoyable.

You know I haven't played Myst in YEARS! I'd be curious to go back and play it and then look at the novels.

Witcher / Gears

Didn't think about The Witcher ones nor Gears. Thanks. I doubt the Gears novels are anything super amazing but I like all the whole dumb sci-fi action in the games.

#7 Posted by Stonyman65 (2765 posts) -

I liked the Resident Evil novels were pretty cool, as are the Doom novels (if you can find them). Speaking of Doom, Masters of Doom was a great read if you are interesting in how the game got made and how FPS games took over the world in the 90's... Good stuff. Lots of great info on Carmack and Romero.

#8 Posted by Splodge (1769 posts) -

Bioforge.

#10 Edited by Corevi (3979 posts) -

The Witcher books are fantastic and there are fan translations of the ones that haven't had an official release in english yet, the games are actually a non-canon spinoff of the books though. The first 3 Mass Effect novels are pretty enjoyable as well as the comics. Alan Wake is really really good but it's just a novelization of the game.

#11 Edited by emofratparty (100 posts) -

The Gears novels are actually really good reads and give a lot of insight into the lore of the games. Karen Traviss wrote them (writer for Gears 3) and went on to do Halo: Glasslands, so have faith that she can put a story together!

#12 Posted by TheBluthCompany (397 posts) -
Online
#13 Posted by RioStarwind (564 posts) -

If you can find any the Nintendo Adventure books are really unique. After all its not often you get to read a choose your own adventure book staring different Nintendo characters. As stated by other posters the Resident Evil novels by S.D. Perry do a pretty good job of novelizing the games.

#14 Posted by DarknessMyOldFriend (257 posts) -

Read a book that isn't a video game. I swear they are good too. Hell, if literature scares you then read books that make you with they were a video game. Or books about video games but not set in video games.

Read Ready Player One. Read Cryptonomicon or The Baroque Cycle Trillogy. Read Peter F. Hamilton's Reality Disfunction series. Read Robin Hobb's Farseer trillogy. Read Walter John Williams's Dread Empire's Fall series. Read Andy Weir's The Martian. Read Neil Gaiman's American Gods. Read Vernor Vinge's A Fire Upon The Deep.

Read something that isn't terrible.

"Videogame Books" are the shitty licensed games of books. Why the hell would you want to read the equivalent of "Jumper: Griffin's Story"? Don't do that to yourself.

#15 Edited by Vuud (2033 posts) -

Looking back, they were pretty awful, but 10 year old me ate 'em up. You should also read the Doom comic book if you haven't already, and if you haven't shame on you.

#16 Posted by AlexW00d (6309 posts) -

The ones that were books first. So Metro 2033, Roadside Picnic, Witcher.

#17 Posted by Hunter5024 (5821 posts) -

The only video game novel I ever read was Dragon Age: The Stolen Throne. It's bad, so my recommendation is not to read it.

#18 Posted by dudeglove (8022 posts) -

I read a novelization of Smash TV once; it was fucking awful.

#19 Posted by Kevin_Cogneto (1100 posts) -
#20 Posted by White_Silhouette (473 posts) -

I enjoyed the first three Mass Effect books. If you enjoy that series those are worth checking out.

#21 Posted by ExiledAstronaut (128 posts) -

Oh god, please read Ready Player One. That thing gave me hope that i could write a good book about video games.

#22 Posted by CreepingDeath0 (176 posts) -

Read a book that isn't a video game. I swear they are good too. Hell, if literature scares you then read books that make you with they were a video game. Or books about video games but not set in video games.

The OP already said he was an avid reader. Stop being such a snarky git. Sometimes people like to read pulpy crap.

On topic - While only loosely connected to video games, I find some of the Warhammer 40k novels can be fairly enjoyable. The Horus Heresy series is generally considered the best jumping on point if you aren't that familiar with the universe, and the first 3 to 5 novels are easily the best.

#23 Posted by Sergio (2161 posts) -

Do not read Ready Player One unless enjoy extreme levels of pandering and are in it simply for the pop-culture references.

#24 Posted by Zirilius (669 posts) -

My choices are all books that give a lot of background about the motivations of characters in some of my favorite franchises. Not only did they give some context about characters and their motivations but it also added to the enjoyment of the games themselves.

I really enjoyed the first two Dragon Age Novels. Believe the first one is called The Stolen Throne and the second one is the Calling and give a lot of insight into DA: Origins and the expansion.

Mass Effect: Revelations give a lot of good background on Saren and Captain Anderson. I didn't particularly care for any of the others though.

Gears of War: Aspho Fields would be my last choice.

#25 Edited by ZolRoyce (736 posts) -

If you're into Dead Space, then Dead Space: Martyr is pretty great, it's basically a prequel to everything and gives a pretty cool back story to one of the major background characters of the Dead Space world and pulls a pretty cool little twist with him, so that was cool.

I haven't finished reading it yet but Metro 2033 is also pretty great, it's not really a video game book though seeing as how it came first and the game came second, but if you're into them it's worth checking out, it's pretty cool seeing the differences between the two. In the game the main character shoots like all of the things but in the book I don't think he's even killed anything by where I am at yet, so that's interesting.

Edit: Oh also I really recommend Starship Titanic, it's the novel version of the game that Douglas Adams did, written/adapted by one of his friends and Monty Python member Terry Jones. So yeah a space adventure and comedy by Douglas Adams and Terry Jones, holy shit, how could someone not read it?

#26 Edited by pinner458 (809 posts) -

I always thought they should do a novel based on the Metro games :D

#27 Edited by StarvingGamer (8380 posts) -

Evo Moment 37 expands on the real lore of the FGC.

#28 Posted by SneakyJB (44 posts) -

Allan Wake was not to bad

I'll try this one for sure. I loved the game but honestly didn't really understand it or do any further research to figure out what was going on.

@alexw00d said:

The ones that were books first. So Metro 2033, Roadside Picnic, Witcher.

Roadside Picnic is wonderful and one of my favorite books. I had forgotten about Metro. Also a lot people seem to like the Witcher books as well in this thread so I'll add those to my list.

@zirilius said:

Gears of War: Aspho Fields would be my last choice.

This one I am adding to my list as well. I wish I liked Mass Effect and Dragon Age but I can't get into them. Yeah I know I am probably one of the few gamers who just doesn't like Mass Effect.

@darknessmyoldfriend said:

Read a book that isn't a video game. I swear they are good too. Hell, if literature scares you then read books that make you with they were a video game. Or books about video games but not set in video games.

The OP already said he was an avid reader. Stop being such a snarky git. Sometimes people like to read pulpy crap.

On topic - While only loosely connected to video games, I find some of the Warhammer 40k novels can be fairly enjoyable. The Horus Heresy series is generally considered the best jumping on point if you aren't that familiar with the universe, and the first 3 to 5 novels are easily the best.

Thank you creepingdeath. I am an avid reader and 90% of what I read is non-videogame related. I just recently finished re-reading "Jurassic Park" and "Invasion of the Bodysnatchers". I really do enjoy the pulpy crap books as well. For instance I read a bunch of $2.00 Kindle horror books, the Alien novels, etc. Literature can come in many forms and sometimes I'm in the mood for something silly or just fun.

But I do feel you darknessmyoldfriend. Video game novels are probably not the place to go if you are looking for great fiction. However, like the dumb B movies I watch a lot, it is sometimes fun to read something stupid and quick.

Thanks for all the suggestions. I've updated my Amazon wish list with most of the titles mentioned here.

#29 Posted by DarknessMyOldFriend (257 posts) -

@watchdog_gamer:

I... I've read a few Mass Effect books. The first Halo one as well, lent to me by a Halo fanatic friend when we were testers together.

I've definitely been there. It can be nice to tear through a 250 page novel in a day. Cotton candy books. I've also ready plenty of trash pulp non-video game books, basically anything with a spaceship on the cover that happened to show up in the book rack of my neighborhood book rack that I ran across as a teen, not to mention Star Trek and Star Wars books.

Ugh, somewhere in a box in storage somewhere are probably some Voyager novels. I should just let Jarrod and Brandi find that, make it their problem.

#30 Edited by TheManWithNoPlan (5808 posts) -

I really liked the Bioshock prequel "Bioshock Rapture". It was an interesting read and gave insight into some of the leading figures of Rapture before shit went down.

#31 Edited by Bones8677 (3264 posts) -

I highly recommend Halo: The Fall of Reach. It's a great introduction to the universe and characters and expands in all directions. It's basically Starship Troopers meets Ender's Game. In fact I recommend all three of the Eric Nylund Halo books: Fall of Reach, First Strike, and Ghosts of Onyx.

#32 Edited by Random45 (1234 posts) -

If you want to read something really shitty, give any of the Warcraft books written by Richard A. Knaak a try. I have NO idea why Blizzard decided this guy should write all of their books, literally EVERY other author they had writing for them was better than this guy. I used to love this shit back in middle and high school when I was really into World of Warcraft, but now I cringe after reading just a few pages. 'The Last Guardian' was the last decent book they put out before Richard A. Knaak became their 'official' writer. I won't say it's very good, but it's not bad.

I remember reading Halo: First Strike years ago, and I liked it at the time.

#34 Posted by SkullPanda1 (148 posts) -

I really enjoyed the Halo novels along with the Eve Online book that came out few years ago. I've read most of the Diablo, Warcraft & Starcraft books but those are really hit and miss. I also read the book for Infinity Blade (I really enjoy the author Brandon Sanderson)

I'd really recommend Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson, just enjoyable!

#35 Posted by Sergio (2161 posts) -

There was an Ico book. I have it on Kindle, but I haven't read it yet.

#36 Posted by T_Wah (16 posts) -

I just read Assassin's Creed forsaken a couple of days ago on my kindle. It's quite short but I thought it was good and it supplemented the plot of Assassin's Creed III well. The book is written in a diary format and the entire story is in Haytham Kenway's point of view; it covers his time from a child all the way up to the end of ACIII. It gave me an entirely different point of view about what happened over the course of ACIII and I actually enjoyed it more than the game (of course I guess that may not mean much since I enjoyed ACIII less than any of the other titles so far). Essentially it's connective tissue between the plot for ACIV and ACIII.

#37 Edited by ll_Exile_ll (1815 posts) -

The first three Mass Effect books are pretty good if you're a fan of that fiction. Just stay away from the fourth one, they contracted it out to some shitty author-for-hire and it turned out terrible.

#39 Posted by Levius (1171 posts) -

Metro 2033 is a pretty great book. I love the bleak atmosphere and the setting, but unfortunately the ending is pretty bad.

#40 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (2903 posts) -

I've read these and would HIGHLY recommend them:
- Halting State (Halting State #1) by Charles Stross
- Omnitopia: Dawn (Omnitopia #1) by Diane Duane
- WWW: Wake (WWW #1) by Robert J. Sawyer

These I have not read, but they have good reviews:
- The Holy Machine by Chris Beckett
- This Is Not a Game (Dagmar #1) by Walter Jon Williams

#41 Posted by SneakyJB (44 posts) -

Thanks for all the recommendations. My list of books to read is quite full now. I'm particularly interested in some of the Halo novels.

#42 Posted by Zevvion (2102 posts) -

Devil May Cry is actually an amazing novel. I really enjoyed it and I usually don't particularly like to read.

#43 Edited by Fredchuckdave (5744 posts) -

Not sure why but I liked Mel Odom's The Black Road back in the day; stopped reading escapist literature shortly thereafter but that one never seemed particularly poor in retrospect.

#44 Posted by Oddballs (152 posts) -

The Fall of Reach provides an excellent origin story for Master Chief, if you care at all for the Halo universe.

#45 Posted by OneKillWonder_ (1788 posts) -

I really loved the Resident Evil novels by S.D. Perry when I was a kid. Haven't read them in years but I imagine they hold up pretty well. The only one that I remember not liking was the one based on RE Zero. The RE2 novel and the two original stories she did were pretty awesome. She even added a new character to the arc that appeared in or was at least mentioned in all the books that changed the fiction from that of the games.

Deus Ex: Icarus Effect was also a very good read and set up Human Revolution quite nicely. I've heard shockingly good things about the Borderlands novel, as well, but I haven't read it myself.

#46 Edited by ch3burashka (5113 posts) -

The Ico novelisation. I think playing the game is a must before reading it, else you don't really get the real impact.

Also, read it at your own risk. Ico is all about the mystery and obfuscation, and while there's a solid narrative that flows well with the depicted game, it reveals the nature of the world and Ico. I was left conflicted on whether I should have read it.

#47 Posted by Jeust (10755 posts) -

Planescape Torment novelization is both fantastic and free if you are interested: http://www.wischik.com/lu/senses/pst-book.html

#48 Edited by A_Faceless_Name (110 posts) -

The Doom books from the 90's are horrible(the story is ok, but the writing from a technical aspect is awful), but I love them to pieces. Well worth reading if you have no expectations.

#49 Edited by Viqor (67 posts) -

Can books that games are based on (like Metro 2033 and The Witcher novels) really be considered "video game novels?" I mean that's a little like calling the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy a video game novel because of the text adventure game from the 1980's. Also, from what I've read (only the first book so far), The Witcher is pretty excellent.

#50 Edited by MormonWarrior (2617 posts) -

I got this at a book fair in elementary school:

I'm not sure if "recommend" is the right word...