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GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS 2013 GAMER’S EDITION (Book Review)

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When I was a kid, what was then-known as The Guinness Book of World Records was a big deal. I still remember thumbing through the massive copies that were held in my parent’s collection, discovering oddities and being captivated by accomplishments that I could barely imagine in an early-1980s pre-internet world. While I’ve had a few specialty hardcover editions come through my hands over the years, it’s been awhile since I’d checked one out, so when the folks at GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS asked if I’d like to take a peek at their Guinness World Records 2013 Gamer’s Edition, I had to accept the offer. After all, I might be The Rock Father now, but I still have an original NES Power Glove in my garage.

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gamerseditionReleased this past January, the 216-page softcover is presented in a colorful, magazine-style format that recalls the days of NINTENDO POWER, packed full of the expected records, but also loaded with history. I don’t recall the older Guinness Books presenting a lot of background on their subjects (perhaps they did), but this one gives insight into the respective material, allowing readers that might not be as familiar it to catch up. Additionally, there’s sort of a “State of the Union Address” in regard to the gaming industry as a whole – a welcome introduction as we enter the eighth generation of console gaming. While the consoles have always been my primary interest, the gang’s all here with coverage of PC, iOS, Android, etc. in the book. 

supesgamerWith THE MAN OF STEEL headed for theaters this summer, it’s interesting to note that ATARI’s SUPERMAN (1979) was the first superhero to feature in a videogame. While I actually played the game at my cousins’ house on the ATARI 2600, I wasn’t aware that is was literally the first heroic entry into a long line of Comic/Gaming crossovers – the subject of a feature midway through the 2013 Gamer’s Edition. 

As a casual gamer myself these days (I recently mourned the end of ROCK BAND DLC, and regularly play CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS II on XBOX LIVE in the wee hours of night vs. a few fellow Dad Bloggers), it’s the retro stuff that captures my heart – and there’s plenty of it here. In the fast-moving age of news at a moment’s notice, the more contemporary data is ever-fluctuating, and that’s the downside of a yearly edition.

Guinness World Records 2013 Gamer’s Edition is available now in print (get it at Walmart.com) or digital (available on iTunes) editions… but act fast if you want it. Word on the street is that the 2013 Gamer’s Edition will be pulled from shelves in the near future (possibly by the end of the month) as the Guinness World Records team begins work on the 2014 edition.

4

The Rock Father Rating: 4/5 Stars

FTC Disclosure: A copy of Guinness World Records 2013 Gamer’s Edition was provided to The Rock Father for the possibility of review consideration. All opinions are that of James Zahn, with whom you should always agree.

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