6 Best Science Fiction Books Based on Video Games

If you’re a fan of these games, you should definitely check out these books. If not, you have important research (read: play the games a lot) to do before reading.

 

6
Dead Space: Martyr
by B. K. Evenson – 2010

When geophysicist Michael Altman hears of the mysterious signal emitted from deep within the Chicxulub crater, he can not resist the lure of an undiscovered artifact. With his girlfriend Ada, he joins a team excavating the underwater crater, determined to find the source of the baffling message. The artifact, named “The Black Marker,” possesses a mysterious power. Close proximity to the stone causes strange occurrences: visions of the dead, vivid dreams, and violent murders. When Michael secretly obtains a small piece of the marker, he too begins to dream.

The Black Marker has chosen him to hear his message: You need to prove yourself worthy of eternal life, or the slate will be wiped clean on Earth.

This is the story of the origin of “The Black Marker,” the foundation of the Church of Unitology, and a discovery that will change the world.

5
The Old Republic: Fatal Alliance
by Sean Williams – 2010

Tassaa Bareesh, a matriarch in the Hutt crime cartel, is holding an auction that’s drawing attention from across the galaxy. Representatives of both the Republic and the Sith Empire are present, along with a Jedi Padawan sent to investigate, a disenfranchised trooper drummed out of the Republic’s elite Blackstar Squad, and a mysterious Mandalorian with a private agenda. But the Republic’s envoy is not what he seems, the Empire’s delegate is a ruthless Sith apprentice, the Jedi Padawan is determined to do the right thing and terrified that he can’t, the trooper hopes to redeem her reputation, and the Mandalorian is somehow managing to keep one step ahead of everyone.

None of these guests—invited or uninvited—has any intention of participating in the auction. Instead they plan to steal the prize, which is locked inside an impregnable vault: two burned chunks of an exploded star cruiser, one of which may hold the key to the wealth of an entire world.

But the truth about the treasure is dangerous and deadly. And in the end, Sith and Jedi, Republic and Empire, must do something they’ve never done before, something that all the agents of good and evil could never make them do: join together to stop a powerful threat that could destroy the galaxy.

4
Gears of War: Aspho Fields
by Karen Traviss – 2008

As kids, the three of them were inseparable; as soldiers, they were torn apart. Marcus Fenix and Dominic Santiago fought alongside Dom’s elder brother Carlos at Aspho Fields in the epic battle that changed the course of the Pendulum Wars. There’s a new war to fight now, a war for mankind’s very survival. But while the last human stronghold on Sera braces itself for another onslaught from the Locust Horde, ghosts come back to haunt Marcus and Dom.

For Marcus—decorated war hero and convicted traitor—the return of an old comrade threatens to dredge up an agonizing secret he has sworn to keep. As the beleaguered Gears of the Coalition of Ordered Governments take a last stand to save mankind from extermination, the harrowing decisions made at Aspho Fields have to be relived and made again. Marcus and Dom can take anything the Locust Horde throws at them, but will their friendship survive the truth about Carlos Santiago?

3
Minecraft: The Island
by Max Brooks – 2017

From the author of the excellent World War Z.

It’s a stretch to call this book science fiction, but it’s such a fun adventure that I put it on the list anyway.

Washed up on a beach, the lone castaway looks around the shore. Where am I? Who am I? And why is everything made of blocks? But there isn’t much time to soak up the sun. It’s getting dark, and there’s a strange new world to explore!

The top priority is finding food. The next is not becoming food. Because there are others out there on the island… like the horde of zombies that appears after nightfall. Crafting a way out of this mess is a challenge like no other. Who could build a home while running from exploding creepers, armed skeletons, and an unstoppable tide of hot lava? Especially with no help except for a few makeshift tools and sage advice from an unlikely friend: a cow.

In this world, the rules don’t always make sense, but courage and creativity go a long way. There are forests to explore, hidden underground tunnels to loot, and undead mobs to defeat. Only then will the secrets of the island be revealed.

“A rollicking adventure yarn; Robinson Crusoe for the digital age.”
—NPR

2
Halo: The Fall of Reach
by Eric Nylund – 2001

The 26th century. Humanity has expanded beyond Earth’s system to hundreds of planets that colonists now call home. But the United Earth Government and the United Nations Space Command are struggling to control this vast empire. After exhausting all strategies to keep seething colonial insurrections from exploding into a full-blown interplanetary civil war, the UNSC has one last hope.

At the Office of Naval Intelligence, Dr. Catherine Halsey has been hard at work on a top-secret program that could bring an end to the conflict, and it starts with 75 children, among them a six-year-old boy named John. And Halsey could never guess that this child will eventually become the final hope against an even greater peril engulfing the galaxy—the inexorable confrontation with a theocratic military alliance of alien races known as the Covenant.

1
BioShock: Rapture
by John Shirley – 2011

It was the end of World War II. FDR’s New Deal had redefined American politics. Taxes were at an all-time high. The bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had created a fear of total annihilation. The rise of secret government agencies and sanctions on business had many watching their backs. America’s sense of freedom was diminishing… and many were desperate to take that freedom back.

Among them was a great dreamer, an immigrant who’d pulled himself from the depths of poverty to become one of the wealthiest and most admired men in the world. That man was Andrew Ryan, and he believed that great men and women deserved better. So he set out to create the impossible: a utopia free from government, from censorship, and from moral restrictions on science, where what you gave was what you got. He created Rapture—the shining city below the sea. But this utopia suffered a great tragedy. This is the story of how it all came to be… and how it all ended.

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