• James Hewlett

Console Wars


Over the last couple of weeks my book to listen to in the van has been Console Wars by Blake Harris.

Console Wars is an account of the fight for market dominance in the early nineties between Nintendo and Saga.

While the book is non-fiction Harris’ writing style is so entertaining, and the events of the time period are at times so crazy, that the book reads more like a traditional narrative.

The book is written from an impartial point of view and tries not to take sides in matters of who was better or who was right, but the principle characters the story focuses on are the change makers at Sega Of America, particularly Tom Kalinske who took over as president of the company in the months before the launch of the Genesis in the US.

Because of the focus being on the folks at SOA you can’t help but root for them while feeling sympathetic toward Nintendo who are more traditional in their methods.

The book was optioned by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg and after a failed attempt at adapting it into a movie the producing partners have since begun work on a TV series version.

I think this is a much better fit personally as trying to compress the five or so years covered in the book into a two-hour movie would result in a lot getting cut.

Reading the book knowing that an adaption is coming was interesting as I couldn’t help but visualise scenes.

The closest comparison I could make is the show Halt & Catch Fire that wrapped up it’s run a couple of years ago. That series was a fictionalisation of Silicon Valley in the eighties and was influenced a lot by the true story of Steves Jobs and Wozniak and the rise of Apple. The difference is that while that series was able to take artistic liberties, the potential Console Wars show would be a true story. That said, there are more than enough crazy events to make for an interesting show and if they are able to capture the same energy Blake Harris was able to muster for office based scenes such as marketing meetings then I think it’ll be just as entertaining as any other prestige drama currently on the air.

I don’t do reviews very often. I’d like to, I feel like I need to practice to get better at it. This post is kind of a prime example of what I feel like I always end up doing; not being overly analytical and more just brain farting out my thoughts of whatever it is I’m talking about.

That’ll do for today I think. I’mma eat some cheesecake. Later.

#books #bookclub #reading #reviews #videogames #history #nineties

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