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Friday, February 28, 2014

Review: Backward Compatible


  Book Trailer

Book Blurb:

Not too long ago, in a town that, depending on your current location, is either not super far or actually quite close…

It is a time of chaotic hormones.

Two nerdy gents home for winter break have discovered a female gamer at a midnight release.

During the break, the gamer trio manages to reveal the game’s secret boss, a hidden enemy with enough power to destroy anything in its path.

Pursued by other gamers who want to be the first to beat this boss, George and Katie race to level up, and, in so doing, restore decency and sexual activity to their personal galaxy…


“These graphics suck,” George says and I look back at the screen. We’re standing in the middle of

the Estate, colorful orbs quivering ahead of us. We each have to choose our starting advantage. Waterfalls

shimmer in the distance and the sunlight streams over multicolored stones in the courtyard.

“Amateurs,” Lanyon concurs. “I mean, they couldn’t have five waterfalls?”

“Your ironic wit is mind blowing, but choose your damn orbs,” I tell them. I consider. Magic,

defense, offense, stealth, and charisma. I always go for magic as a black mage, but I wonder if a druid

needs something else. Screw it. I need charisma in real life, too.

“Charisma?” Lanyon asks. “No one ever picks charisma.”

“We’re a party of a thief, druid, and a bard. We’re screwed regardless.”

“You two underestimate the mighty power of my lute,” George argues.

“Did you start with charisma?” Lanyon asks.

“Hell, no. I have charisma in spades. I started with stealth.”

“Great. A stealthy bard,” I sigh.

“She’s right,” Lanyon concedes. “We’re screwed.”

However, it actually isn’t bad at all at first. We power through the Estate and make it to the Yobanaria

Dale with no resurrections and all at level ten. I’m impressed. George hasn’t actually fought anything, but

he has some pretty awe-inspiring charm mastery already. I think I might have a serious crush. He seals the

deal when he buffs my hailstorm spell without even being asked.

“Can you guys watch El Thiefelo? My mom wants me to eat supper,” Lanyon says.

“Yeah, we’ve got it,” I tell him. “The first boss is in the elven ruins anyway, so we should grind a bit.

I think he’s a twelve.”

George and I explore the Dale, taking out bats and Joba spores. It’s fairly quiet, except for when we

combo with his charms and my spells and he yells out, “Eat lute, bitch,” but it’s nice. We work well,

almost inherently understanding each other. I’ve never been able to play this effectively with anyone. I try

not to think about his eyes. Stupid boys, being cute and stuff.

By the time Lanyon comes back, we’re all at level 12, although Lanyon leveled up just by standing

by a door while we played. Still, we are ready to take on Balsa the Proud. As a black mage, it took me

about nine seconds. Trees don’t like fire. However, druids don’t have the same level of black magic and

all elemental magic is weakened by the need to draw from the elements nearby. Sadly, trees seem to avoid

storing fire runes in their villages. I expect this to be a little more challenging. It might even take fifteen


“First boss. Also known as the freebie bitch to sucker the young folks into a false sense of security,”

Lanyon announces as he runs into the center of Balsa’s lair. The cinema plays and then, in a moment of

pure absurdity, El Thiefelo is squished as Balsa steps on him.

“Can someone revive me?” Lanyon whines.

The Gamer Nerd's Love Song


    Hold on to your controllers my gamer friends, because Backwards Compatible is going to blow you away!

    I picked up Backwards Compatible as a bit of fluff to read before bed because I was having trouble falling asleep, this was a mistake.

    First I told myself "I'll just read until I am really tired out" but when I realized that I didn't want to put the book down I gave myself until 50% on the Kindle. I was at 61% when I realized I had passed my promised spot to put the book down. Then my Kindle died. "Good!" I thought to myself, "Now shut the light off, close your eyes and go to sleep." The next thing I knew it was dawn and I was squinting at my phone under the covers as I read the last page of the book.

        Backwards Compatible tells the story of Katie and George from both of their POVs. Katie is a girl who would rather stay at home leveling up her character than shopping and trying to get a guy. George is the gamer guy who would probably love having a girlfriend, if he could figure out how to get one. They meet by chance at the midnight release of their favorite video game when they both reach for the same copy of the game. I was laughing through the entire book and rooting Katie and George on all the while. Scenes that made me laugh or smile were highlighted as I went because I was so excited that they were referencing things I loved! George, his best friend Layon and Katie felt like my new best friends as the book went on. I wanted to dress up and go to midnight movies and stay up having grind fests with them too!

    Girl gamers that would rather stay up late gaming then worry about spending hours getting ready for a date will love Katie. She's foul mouthed, snarky, and insecure while at the same time this amazing package of informed, nerdy, competitive chick that doesn't mind your embarrassing family or even more embarrassing best friend. She can hold her own with the guys in game but doesn't really get dating. At one point after a horrific date she states, "That's it. I'm only dating Browncoats from now on." How many of us have said this to ourselves after a bad date or breakup? I know I have! Reading Backwards Compatible I kept thinking about how this is a chick I would want to raid with and how she could definitely fill the role of BFF quite nicely in my life.

    George and his best friend Layon are kind of a package deal. Where George goes, so goes Layon. Which can be difficult when you want to go on a date. The two exude the kind of love that only comes with best friendship and provide laugh after laugh. Rude and obnoxious at times you can't help falling in love with these two. George's anxiety about dating is relateable and humorous. His sweet DIY gifts to Katie will have you swooning over him right a long with her. Layon's cheesy pick up lines and ability to ruin the mood will have you groaning as you root for him to find someone to date as well.

    I loved that although yes this is a love story between Katie and George Backward Compatible shows that Geek love is it's own thing. Geek love extends to the love of video games and awesome movies but most of all geek love is about friendship. Throughout my life my bond with my geek friends has always be the strongest and fiercest love I have ever had among friends. Maybe it's because we through our hearts completely behind whatever we love be it game, book, film or person. As Katie and George fall for one another they gain the friendship of some amazing, kick-ass people a long the way. Friendship is the most important love you can have in your life and Backward Compatible not only makes that clear but is chock full of it.

    Backward Compatible lost some of my love when I read a scene about Katie going on a date with a really pushy guy. We all know that there are people out there that will be agressive on dates and will try to pressure you sexually. Katie didn't really stand up for herself and let it go way to far before she spoke up. This was meant to be a humorous scene but the creepiness of her date and her allowance of his behavior was gross and went on too long.

    There is also A LOT of cursing and trash talk in Backward Compatible, but it is done  humorously. If you can't handle the type of language you would hear while planning COD you may want to stay away from this one. I thought that it was used somewhat excessively and about half of it could have been cut out. But if that doesn't bother you and you love video games, geek culture and a good quirky love story you should definitely pick this one up!

Rating: 4.5/5

Buy Links:



Amazon UK:





About the Authors:

Sarah Daltry:

Sarah Daltry writes about the regular people who populate our lives. She's written works in

various genres - romance, erotica, fantasy, horror. Genre isn't as important as telling a story

about people and how their lives unfold. Sarah tends to focus on YA/NA characters but she's

been known to shake it up. Most of her stories are about relationships - romantic, familial,

friendly - because love and empathy are the foundation of life. It doesn't matter if the story is set

in contemporary NY, historical Britain, or a fantasy world in the future - human beings are most

interesting in the ways they interact with others. This is the principle behind all of Sarah's stories.

Sarah has spent most of her life in school, from her BA and MA in English and writing to

teaching both at the high school and college level. She also loves studying art history and really

anything because learning is fun.

When Sarah isn't writing, she tends to waste a lot of time checking Facebook for pictures of cats,

shooting virtual zombies, and simply staring out the window.

She has written several books, most notably Bitter Fruits, an urban fantasy in the Eden’s

Fall series, and the Flowering series, including Forget Me Not, Lily of the Valley, and Star of


Sarah’s Website:
Sarah’s Facebook:

Sarah’s Twitter:

Sarah’s Favorite Video Games:

1. Borderlands 1 and 2

2. Fallout 3

3. Persona series

4. Eternal Darkness

5. Silent Hill series

6. Final Fantasy series

7. Skyrim

8. Dragon Age series

9. Mass Effect series

10. Fable series

11. Bioshock series

12. Magic: The Gathering

13. Perfect Dark

14. Heavy Rain

15. LA Noire

16. Parasite Eve

17. Catherine

18. Zuma

Pete Clark:

Pete Clark likes writing, animals, potato chips, and cheese. Midnight Riders is his first published

novel, although he can also proudly say he finally finished Helix Crashing, the fantasy novel he

has been working on for over a decade. In addition, he has written Across the Barren Landscape,

a collection of linked Western short stories. He also writes plays, both dramatic and comedic.

When he is not writing, Pete tends to ignore everyone around him and obsess over sports.

Pete’s Website:

Pete’s Facebook:

Pete’s Twitter:

Pete’s Favorite Video Games:

1. Bioshock

2. Resident Evil 4

3. Uncharted 2

4. Eternal Darkness

5. Goldeneye

6. Ms. Pac Man

7. Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood

8. God of War III

9. Dead Space

10. Silent Hill 2

11. Infamous 2

12. Portal

13. Defender

14. Super Metroid

15. Mass Effect

16. Castlevania

17. Call of Duty 4

18. Dragon Warrior

19. Perfect Dark

20. Arkham Asylum

21. Limbo

22. Rogue Squadron 2

23. Medieval

24. Parasite Eve

25. The Walking Dead

26. Metal Gear Solid

27. Team Fortress 2

28. Kagero: Deception 2

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