I admit that when I first laid eyes on this pretty blue tome I was slightly baffled. It appeared to have no plastic casing and no clip locks on it. It had no disc inside or Manual with clear instructions on how it worked or what the controls were.
I hesitantly pressed the start button on my controller – nothing happened.
I was confused, lost and unsure as to what I should do with it and it seemed far too large to put in the disc drawer.
And then it slowly dawned on me; ‘ah, it’s one of those book things people keep telling me about. Those things that people say I should read instead of playing games all of the time.’
Once I had that figured out things began to make much more sense.
The book in question is a 216 page “Bible” for gamers around the world, containing a whopping 596 records that revolve around our favorite hobby, and also contains plenty of trivia, gaming quotes and more to further help make this an essential purchase, but I’m getting ahead of myself here.
The records themselves are neatly broken into several main sections that cover the major genre’s such as shooters, racing, RTS and many more. After that each is broken in categories such as simulation racing to help you find exactly what you’re looking for.
It’s easy to be impressed by the range that the book covers with the likes of 2D shooters, narrative adventures and more all having their own categories within the parent sections.
Each main section also features a “Critical Hit” ,a two-page spread on a specific game. For example Call of Duty stands for the shooters while Mario Kart stands for the racing games. These two-page spreads are a fascinating read dealing specifically with that one game’s record’s and I discovered many facts about the games that I didn’t know, as I’m sure you will too.
Once you actually get into reading the individual records themselves the impressive variety continues with expected records like “Best Selling X Type of Game” standing next to odder records such “First Religious Music Game”. The records are often weird and wonderful as well as informative and fun making for a great read and I was often surprised to discover what records some games hold.
It’s not just games either, but gamers as well such as 85 year-old John Bates from Onalaska, Wisconsin, USA. This gentlemen hadn’t even touched a game until 2009 when he was given a Wii and became hooked on Bowling. He went on to get the record for “Most Perfect Games on Wii Sports Bowling (2,850)”.
Or if you’re looking for something a little ruder how about the record for the most swearing in a video game? – which is held by Scarface for having over 5,000 expletives.
While I would have been quite happy just with the records alone the book packs in a good bit more than that with a run-down of the different 2010 Gaming Awards as well as a countdown of 2010’s best games.
Other neat features include leaderboards for certain games printed throughout and bits of game trivia covering each page with some brilliant facts included that I never knew making this a great book for those that want to pick up a few more facts about their hobby.
Along the bottom of each page lurks quotes from hundreds of games as well so you can impress (or embarrass) your friends by quoting famous lines from games, much to the shame of your family. Simply skip to the pack of the book to find out what game that quote is from. Simples.
I’ve been lucky enough to have this book for a week now, and I’ve read it from cover to cover and enjoyed every minute of it.
I’ve been amazed by obscure records, gained new knowledge and discovered that books do actually exist and aren’t just some sort of mythical beast invented by parents to try to get us to stop playing games all day.
But what impressed me the most was simply how much is packed into those 216 pages, detailed features sit side-by-side with records and great facts and every page has something for every gamer to enjoy.
The book stands £14.99 and contains a vast amount of records covering an equally vast amount of genre’s and providing plenty of bonus features and treats along the way that every gamer will love.
Simply put, every person that loves games should have this sitting proudly on their shelf.
Now if you excuse me I’m going attempt to set a new record to be included in the 2012 edition.