Ready Player One is about to make nostalgic worlds collide. Here’s a taste of what you can expect and some tubular stuff we want to see from the novel.
How would you like to suit up as your favourite movie, TV or video game character everday? How would you like to then interact with the entire world as that character in your daily life? On top of that, you could compete to win half a trillion bucks and own the business that allows it all to happen.
Well, hold on to your butts because that’s exactly what world Ready Player One is about to bring to life.
Written by Ernest Cline, Ready Player One drops us straight into the childhood fantasies we’ve all shared ever since video games were invented.
Ready Player One Synopsis
It’s 2045, and the real world has fallen into disarray. By using OASIS (not Liam and Noel), a super-powered virtual reality system, you can do and be anything you want to be. It’s basically the only way to cope and earn a living, but also sounds fun as all hell.
After the death of its creator, James D. Halliday, he issues a super rad contest with a pre-recorded video will. There’s an easter egg hidden in OASIS and the first to find it will gain wealth and power beyond belief. The inhabitants of the entire expanse of the OASIS go into a frenzy and soon change the landscape of culture as we know it. Since Halliday was obsessed with the 80s, so too is everyone who’s elligible for the contest. Including our hero, one Wade Watts.
Watts devotes every waking moment learning whatever he can about the 80s. Movies, music, TV, even commercials become his life. His holy grail, however, lies in classic video games. Joust, Golden Axe, Adventure, you name it. He has to overcome the situation he’s born into first – orphaned and poor, as is the prerequisite for most protagonists. But that doesn’t deter him from trying to reach his goal.
Here’s the real catch: advancing in this game entails getting past the IOI, a nefarious company that has plans to ruin OASIS for everyone if they become victorious first. They’ll do this by any means necessary with real world mind games and death threats if they have to. Wade will have to rely on friends he makes along the way if they all want to survive and beat the system.
Here are some things we’re hoping to look forward to in Ready Player One.
5 – Totally Tubular Planets
Ready Player One mashes up all the iconic and obscure 80s pop culture you can think of. It even makes entire planets out of them. The OASIS is made up of 27 sectors, each with their own planets arranged to look like a Rubik’s cube. And each planet has its own theme. One planet we should get to see on the big screen is Archaide, a gigantic museum of sorts with old school arcade games and ‘ancient artefacts’ from the 80s.
There’s also an entire planet named after John Hughes and every neighborhood is modelled exactly to a T from every 80s movie he’s made. Hopefully the movie does the book justice. There’s another created for Robert Zemeckis, the man behind Back to the Future, Forrest Gump and Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Literal worlds colliding, all in an interactive galaxy!
4 – Awesome Tech
To be the best Gunter (easter egg hunters) in OASIS, you have to have a sweet rig. A rig allows you to access the OASIS via standard issued goggles and haptic gloves. You can even take them with you in the real world while riding in a bus or walking somewhere. Some wealthier users get suped up rigs and haptic suits that allow them to run without hitting the walls of their home with the help of a treadmill that moves in all directions. Pretty neat.
There are also other peripheral accessories you could get if you have the moola: An aromatic machine that lets you smell your surroundings; a chair and vest that lets you feel when you’re hit/shot. Probably want to keep those off most of the time though.
While immersed in OASIS you can also order food! You could get real authentic old school 80s Ninja Turtle pizza just how you like it by making a virtual order. It’ll arrive to you hot and fresh in the real world. Good to know that becoming even fatter in the future will be much easier and tastes bodacious!
But 2045 isn’t all peaches and cream. So when you log off be sure to protect yourself with some bullet proof vests and a bio metric gun. When you purchase a gun in the real world, your hands are scanned on the gun (both right and left) so no one else can fire it. You’ll also have a max amount of bullets you can fire per day. In fact, something like that exists today. Maybe 2045 isn’t that far off after all.
3 – Rad Mash-ups
Ladies and Germs I present to you the Ecto-88 KITT De Lorean. That’s right: Ghostbusters, Knight Rider and Back to the Future all in one ride. Not only is this ride 80s-gasmic, Watts a.k.a Parzival (Wade’s alter ego, which everyone has in the OASIS) made this thing capable of flying through solid matter. Aren’t you ready to take this bad-boy for a spin!?
If the movie is anything like the book, there’ll be dream team match ups galore. Iron Giant, Voltron, and Gundam bots all fighting side by side against the big baddie. It’s another huge iconic name so I’ll keep that a secret just in case they don’t change it from the book. Hint: every so often he destroys Japan.
There are so many possibilities, that you can lose count just in the trailers alone. No worries. The hard working folks on YouTube have done their geeky duty. Check out Chun Li, Freddy Kruger, Chucky in action. Go on, take a gander.
2 – The Bogus IOI Indentured Prisoner System
As mentioned earlier, the IOI (Innovative Online Industries) are the antagonists hot on the trailer of Watts and friends. At one point in the story someone (dodging spoilers for you here folks, hope you appreciate it) gets locked up in their unique jail system.
Instead of just going behind bars, you’re forced to become a slave to IOI until your debt to them has been paid. This will never happen because charges you incur while locked up are charged to your existing debt, that in and of itself is accruing interest. All the while you’re forced to work in a 9-5 mundane job in the OASIS. Ear tags with cameras, ankle low jack and cameras up the wazoo all keep you in line just in case you actually think you have a chance at escaping.
These dudes really mean business and will do anything to get every last dollar out of you. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out in the movie because of its not so subtle metaphor for the real world cube monkey jobs.
1 – Smooth moves at the dance club
One scene from the book sticks out as by far the trippiest and most 80s thing of all: the group dance scene. You know the one: a song comes on that everyone knows and do the exact same dance moves. Ready Player One does it in spades and takes it to the Nth level.
For that scene we journey to The Distracted Globe on planet Neonoir, where it is always night time. Leather clad, mohawk wearing punk rockers inhabit this bitchin’ world. The club itself floats a few metres above the surface and inside is a combination of a zero gravity dance floor with the ability to walk anywhere you can around it, including the ceiling.
Order your favourite drink from any movie, maybe even a spiked blue milk from Star Wars or a $5 milk shake from Jack Rabbit Slim’s. There’s an incredibly wild dance routine where everyone turns into lava lamp blobs and the dancing literally becomes fluid. After all, this is the virtual world of 2045.
So, what are you waiting for? Strap in, get your dancing shoes on. You’re now prepared for Ready Player One. Let’s hope it compares to these Top 5 successful sci-fi book adaptations.