By Ben Sawyer
OK so I'm not really a gamer. I live for spades and backgammon on the net, and I still play the three sample holes I got with an msn disk a few years back, I broke my joystick on a training copy of Fighter Ace but that's about it. But one night, a few weeks back Digital Mill in Portland hosted the November NetPM and I walked away with a copy of Ben Sawyer's "Monster Gaming."
He had talked about how gaming can be very useful for training people for real life situations, much in the same way a simulator can. I had hoped Monster Gaming would be a book along those lines. It's not.
And yet it is. Monster Gaming is an extraordinary primer on Gaming with robust tidbits on everything from the gaming hacks to how to build or buy a really tasty computer to how to host a stylin event. When it doesn't explain, it gives ample references really good websites.
It turns out that to be a really good gamer you have to have a clue about how to use your computer. Monster Gaming will give even a novice computer user a clue on how to better use their box. And if a person is already well on the way to Monster Gamer status then this book is an outstanding resource.
My only regret is that this book is not published on the web or at least came with an electronic copy on CD with links included in the text. With it's plethora of urls and other resources it would seem ready made for it.
I rate the book a 4.3. It's very readable. Mr. Sawyer has a writing style that brings the reader into his office for a good chat about gaming. He obviously knows and loves his subject. And as I said it's a marvelous resource. Every time I opened the book I found out something that I wanted to know.