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For the Win by Cory Doctorow

For the Win (edition 2010)

by Cory Doctorow

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8275210,945 (3.7)22
Title:For the Win
Authors:Cory Doctorow
Info:Tor Teen (2010), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 480 pages
Collections:Your library

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For the Win by Cory Doctorow (Author)

  1. 50
    Little Brother by Cory Doctorow (jshrop)
  2. 30
    Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow (jshrop)
  3. 10
    Reamde by Neal Stephenson (kjforrest)
    kjforrest: Both books cover gaming, gold farming and economics in an interesting way. For The Win is much shorter and a better read, but Reamde is good too.
  4. 00
    The Jungle by Upton Sinclair (weener)
    weener: For the Win is kind of like a modern-day version of the Jungle: a heavy-handed, painful, yet readable book about labor rights.

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Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
3.5* Interesting concept, enjoyable read, though I often felt like I was getting a lesson in economics rather than reading a work of fiction. ( )
  Bugetta | Sep 29, 2014 |
After Doctorow's last YA effort, Little Brother, I was really looking forward to his next. I should not have been.

"For the Win" is character soup. They're all foreign people. And while I have no problem reading about foreign people, it give me problems finding the sympathetic character to identify with. I'll be the first to say it -- I'm not interested in reading about East Indian or Korean gold farmers. There's nothing for me, an American audience, to hang a hat on. The people in these books obsessively play MMORPG's. They're sick. They need help, not encouragement.

This is a novel that's more interested in economics and politics than in the characters it's describing. Economics is a mystery to me, and it always will be. I have no interest in it, even though I should. To me, it's magic. And not the good kind of magic that Merlin uses. It's the "any sufficiently advanced something is indistinguishable from magic" that Arthur C. Clarke uses. I think all the youth of America agrees with me that economics + young adult = you're going to have trouble finding an audience while the next Twilight book is sharing your shelf space. This is now my least favorite Doctorow book. ( )
  theWallflower | Feb 24, 2014 |
3.5 stars for the storyline (I really liked it)
5 stars for the politics (It has changed the way I view things, and I like books like that).

[a:Cory Doctorow|12581|Cory Doctorow|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1361468756p2/12581.jpg] always impresses me (well except for [b:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom|2082571|Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom|Cory Doctorow|/assets/nocover/60x80.png|1413], I never understood that one, but that might be the fact I have never been to Disneyland).

His books are always well-written and gripping tales that challenge my thinking. In this book we followed the lives of gold farmers in a not-to-distant future (I imagine about ten years from now). It is like a mild dystopian style, in that he is predicting what game playing might be like in ten to fifteen years.

It really helped that I was a big World of Warcraft player several years ago (back before I had kids, when I had time to waste). It also helped that I was heavily involved in the economy of the game, I played the auction houses, buying and selling goods in order to make my character wealthy. My husband and several of my real-life friends played the game, we all had favourite aspects, and mine was making gold.

I remember my very first gold-making endeavour. I farmed eggs and sold them. It was christmas time and the eggs were in demand as people wanted to make egg-nog.

Later I harvested herbs in remote locations that I would sell to people trying to level new professions recently available as part of the new expansion.

I remember stalking NPCs waiting for rare recipes to appear, that I knew I could sell for a high price on the auction houses, or even just selling bulk amounts of cheap recipes, ones sold by NPCs in distant areas, it was much like a real shop. Players could waist 30minutes of real-time tracking the recipe down, or they could pay me for the recipe and get busy questing.

For me this was the real joy of the game, and many days I would happily build my wealth switching between characters, buying and selling between alliances. I loved it.

As a player we all despised the gold-farmers, typically asians that spammed chat channels trying to sell gold. They had to earn it the exact same way I did, they had to work hard, but instead of keeping it they sold it to players.

This book really changed my perception of this gold farming industry, I got to see what it looked like from the other side. It even changed the way I think about tele-marketers. In many ways I would compare this book to "Slumdog Millionaire" for its ability to make your reconsider opinions that you might have. ( )
  alsocass | Oct 12, 2013 |
A fantastic story about the life of geeks as well as the life of those in poverty in asia. (not my best sentence) This book grasps global economics in a way only possible by doctorow and is an overall great read. ( )
  ravenclawnerd | Aug 20, 2013 |
A fascinating novel of gaming, economics and unionisation. While I knew of the author, I didn't know much about him or his work and I was intrigued when I came upon this book in the library.

There's a lot of exposition and explanation about economics, the history and methods of unionisation, game design and manipulations of games for profit and even the behavioural psychology behind economic markets. A lot of theory. And yet, for all the time characters spend explaining things to each other, it didn't feel like they had swallowed an economics textbook unlike, say, in [a:Stieg Larsson|706255|Stieg Larsson|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1246466225p2/706255.jpg]'s [b:The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo|2429135|The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1)|Stieg Larsson|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1293975922s/2429135.jpg|1708725] which I found very hard going at the beginning.

A large number of plot strands are drawn through the novel, drawing together characters in vividly-drawn locations across the world as they put into practice the economic theories they expound in the world of online gaming.

I really enjoyed (and learnt a lot from) this novel, and I'll be adding [b:Little Brother|954674|Little Brother|Cory Doctorow|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1289934046s/954674.jpg|939584] to my 'to read' list. ( )
  stevejwales | Apr 26, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
Once again Doctorow has taken denigrated youth behavior (this time, gaming) and recast it into something heroic.
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Live as though it were the early days of a better nation.
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In the game, Matthew's characters killed monsters, as they did every single night. But tonight, as Mattheww thoughtfully chopsticked a dumpling out of a styrofoam clamshell, dipped it in the red hot sauce and popped it into his mouth, his little squadron did something extraordinary: they began to win.
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A group of teens from around the world find themselves drawn into an online revolution arranged by a mysterious young woman known as Big Sister Nor, who hopes to challenge the status quo and change the world using her virtual connections.

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