Perfect mix of memoir and criticism in this tiny tome on shareware MS DOS games I bought from the author at "her zine fest booth and now feel so amn silly for waiting this long to " zine fest booth and now feel so Commodore Amiga damn silly for waiting this long to read Pick it up right away if you are feelingown on the toxic How To Stop Worrying decay ofigital culture through Anna s writing I promise you can catch another glimpse with childlike wonder at the awkward and revelatory possibilities of sharing imaginary worlds It took me WAY too long to Intaglio discover Boss Fight Books However I made it a point to jump right in and jump IidI spent some time reading many of the first ten books intros and while most intrigued me it was Anthropy s ZZT that invited me backI really enjoyed this book even having never heard of ZZT before Yes that probably makes me a horrible gamer but I was never into the PC scene What made it work so well is that I not only felt like I understood what the game was about but I also was able to see what it meant to Anthropy and so many others in the world This book gave this game value above and beyond entertainment and I think any good analyticalnon fiction writing should o just that add to what it s iscussing This book White Fang does that and A bonus to this book is the identity mostly revolving around gender that is explored when we play a game or create one the way we embody our characters Honestly I could veone with of this as it s really what caused me to burn through this bookThere are some slower moments and maybe some asides contextual information that idn t necessarily add to the overall ideas and themes at least to me but it was a wonderful read in the end and made for a Great Intro Into What I intro into what I is a fantastic publisher Loved this less about ZZT the game and the community of players and creators that grew up around the game The tools to build worlds in ZZT seemed to give voice to those not normally heard at the time the marginalised the strange and the ueerThe book also ocuments how that community interacted through BBS IRC message boards and even the games they made This makes it also very interesting study of early internet communitiesFinally as a video game creator I could really appreciate the creative spark that rives individuals to explore the boundaries of what is capable with Game Engines and really push it as far as possible Doing this really leads to wonderful strange and new games I now really want to play around with ZZT nowEasily the best Boss Fight book that I have read to ate ZZT by Anna Anthropy is centered around a gaming community that consumed a big chunk of my life between the ages of 13 and 15 ZZT was a game creation system which meant it came with It S Own Built In World Editor s own built in world editor Conspiracy On The Housatonic discovered the game and community when we signed up for AOL using the AOL software for MS DOS in 1995 There were tons of user created games toownload and play and you could even upload your own A magical timeI made several games under my ZZT company Ultraware The community I bonded with on AOL then later via the web and listservs allowed me to escape my restrictive homeschooled upbringing while hanging out with a bunch of people like me In ZZT Anna Anthropy teaches the history of ZZT through the lens of her experience Anna is a trans individual so throughout the book we re given snapshots of her adolescent interactions with the game and it s community as she Friendlyvision discovers who she really is One section highlights how ZZT specifically appealed to trans kids The story of the first trans girl she ever met online tugs at the heartstrings a bit tooThat s a theme present throughout the book Many of the individuals interviewed had issues growing upepression abuse identity confusion A lot of lonely kids found comfort in this silly little game I was one of themOutside of the biographical asides we. In 1991 long before Epic Games was putting out blockbusters like Unreal Infinity Blade and Gears of War Tim Sweeney released a strange little MS DOS shareware game called ZZT The simplicity of its text graphics masked the complexity of its World Editor players could use ZZT to esign their own gamesThis feature. Ighter fashion and also has good insight into the creative process behind a lot of personal game evelopmentWhereas the first book was a beautifully sprawling mess of personal game Fomorian Earth Star Borne 1 developmentWhereas the first book was a beautifully sprawling mess biography andescription this one is tighter This befits the narrative architecture of each gameAnna Anthropy has shown a gift for embedding the autobiographical esp pertaining to her personal journey into her work and this book is no exception It really captures the joy of what happens when a well crafted accidentally or purposefully game engine allows someone who isn t a professional game Bob The Castaway Or The Wreck Of The Eagle developer yet toelve into the act of creation with no real clue to what they are Wandering Willies Tale doing A PRETTY MUCH PERFECT book about the thing I spent many teen years making terrible RPGs in and about the weird sleazy socialemimonde surrounding those Teen Gaming Dreams A book for anyone who was a confused kid finding solace in the weird world online figuring out your space in the world through secret IRC channels creating grandiose video game reams that re totally irrelevant to the outside world I m even interviewed in it y all so check it out ZZT Or This Is Our Punk Rock to use the subtitle I imagined over the course of reading it is a coming of age story for the PC generation s middle children In providing both an accurate and entertaining account of her experiences with the game Anna Anthropy bottles the feeling of early Internet and the Wild West era of sharewareAnthropy epicts youth with a rare honesty that scans as both intensely personal and instantly relatable Using interviews with other ZZT creators in addition to her own accounts she successfully captures the fear and excitement of self iscovery and self expression weaving these threads to illustrate the extraordinary impact of a simple game creation tool ZZT is a testament to the power of young mindsAnthropy s critiue of Big Computing s recent focus on consumption over creation is one of the book s most powerful sections Her insistence on seeing computers as tools for
authorship as opposed to mere commodities u I was captivated by this book but I be lying if I said as opposed to mere commodities u I was captivated by this book but I White Horse Regressions Glen Wiley Mystery 2 d be lying if I said weren t a few things that primed me for it I remember ZZT what this book is ostensibly about very fondly especially the editor It was my first foray into gameevelopment as a young un and I just loved having those tools at my isposal back then I read this book at a time when I was heavily uestioning my gender identity The author and some of the people she talks about in this book are transgender and this is iscussed to some extent in the book While I wasn t involved in the ZZT community at large I was too young at the time and Livia Or Buried Alive The Avignon Quintet 2 didn t hang on for as long I have a pretty vivid memory of what 90s online communities were like for better and for worse This book is very much about the community that surrounded the game perhaps even than the game itselfFor me it s was aefinite 5 star must read book That said it s pretty hard for me to tell how objectively good it is since I relate to it on such a Mehmed Ali deep level that many of my friends for good or for ill probably wouldn t be able to I think I still recommend it though it s not a very long read A great nostalgia filled romp through a game that was a key part of many folks livesZZT is basically what got me into programming all those years ago It managed to hide the fact that it was programming until you were already neck eep in it and by then it was too late you were hookedThis book is pretty light on the technical side of things it s mostly about the culture around ZZT and the author s experiences with it For anyone in the ZZT scene as a kid it s going to bring back fond memories If you never played ZZT but want to know how it kick started a generation of programmers careers it s a pretty good overview. R and what happens when a ten year old gets her hands on a programming language she can understandIt’s been said that the first Velvet Underground album sold only a few thousand copies but that everyone who heard it formed a band Well not everyone has played ZZT but everyone who played it became a game esign. ,
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Re given a Resilient Post Disaster Recovery Through Building Back Better detailed history of an almost forgotten subculture Alexis formerly Greg Janson the creator of the Super Tool Kit and ZZT s successor MegaZeux has a stronger presence in the book than I expected Janson was known in the community for being a little mysterious You ll find out why Her interview in this book is the most open one I ve seen from herThere s great original research that went into chronicling the ZZT scene on Prodigy both ZZT CLUB and ZZT CLUB PART 2 Janson was a member of Part 2 which is where I heard of it but it s always been sort of a lost chapter Anna talks to some original members and sources previous interviews to paint a pretty clear pictureThe book has it s points to make A lot of gender politics but nothing I Question Medica Nueuamente Ventilada disagreed with There s a section towards the end that makes a great argument for computers as tools instead of appliances I think modern gamingevelopments like Minecraft Valve s Source Engine Little Big Planet and others have one a great job carrying ZZT s torch She oes have a point when it comes to newb level computingAt times the
Book Gets Too Technical Thegets too technical the tutorial seemed out of place for example but this is honestly some of the clearest Innovative Turkey Hunting documentation I ve seen on ZZT OOP ZZT s programming language Theescriptions of game play even taught me a guy who s been playing this game nearly two ecades some new tricks There s also a ecent list of suggested games and a tutorial to get ZZT running on a modern system in the backI m glad somebody finally wrote the story of my people ZZT provided a community for kids like me who A Practical Guide To Usability Testing didn t have one in the real world and as evidenced from the stories in this book we all still have a little ZZT in usI ve been involved in several online communities since ZZT was a part of my life but you always remember your first Online communities come and go but when you get ineep enough they inform and shape who you are This uote from In Search Of A Soul draco towards the end of the book sums it for me we poured our blood soul and guts into those ASCII games And that was the most beautiful thing possible for us at that time I picked up this book expecting a fun tripown memory lane I put it The Dynamic Genome down surprised at how much it moved me It blasts the nostalgia at full blast but it also made me think about online communities and my relationship with them in aifferent wayHighly recommended I supported the Boss Fight Books Kickstarter and have received each of the books they ve published to The Life And Adventures Of James P Beckwourth date but ZZT is the one I was most looking forward to and the first one I read I never played around with ZZT to the extent that the author or any of the people featured in the bookid but I Books To Build On do remember having a few ZZT games and wasting reams of paper printing out instructions on how to build my own games in the editor The book is solidly written and well researched but it focuses on the culture around ZZT and specifically the author s own experiences as a trans individual in the ZZT community It shouldn t have surprised me that the book went in such a personalirection the 33 13 series which seems to be the model for Boss Fight Books also allows authors a lot of Freedom In Their Approach To in their approach to subject matter and I found the personal stories really interesting but I think I expected just a little bit ZZT which in retrospect is silly as there s really only so much to say about an ASCII text adventure game while there s a whole lot to say about the people who invested so much of their adolescent time in building worlds thereOverall I found this enjoyable enough to read but Esto Es Troya didn t feel it was strongly written enough that I recommend it to anyone who idn t specifically have an interest in any of the topics covered in the book In the vein of Boss Fight Books Volume 1EarthBound but is written in a Was a revelation to thousands of gamers including Anna Anthropy author of Rise of the Videogame Zinesters ZZT is an exploration of a submerged continent a personal history of the shareware movement ascii art messy teen identity struggle cybersex transition outsider art the thousand eaths of Barney the Dinosau.