Posted by : David Guyll March 13, 2011

Another very late review, this one for Sooner Dead, Gamma World's novel debut. In short, it was pretty good, though I did find the serious tone out of place when compared to the general feel and play style of the game. This isn't a bad thing mind you, just unexpected. I don't want to spoil the book if I can help it, so don't expect a detail synopsis.


The story revolves around two scouts, Hella and Stampede, as they guide a caravan of scientists and heavily armed and armored soldiers across Oklahoma as they search for something (what that is, both you and the characters aren't privy to until much later). Hella is a human whose body contains nano-machines, allowing her to shape her hands into guns, and later perform other feats (which I won't spoil). Stampede on the other hand is a bisonoid seismic (ie, can create earthquakes by stomping on the ground).

Overall I enjoyed the pacing, with action scenes, exploration, and character interaction mixed together quite well to give you a solid impression of what the world of Gamma Terra can be like. I say can be, because while there are certainly mutant "people", there's a lack of fluctuating mutations and high-tech weaponry. Likewise, aside from the spider-coyote mutant things at the start, there really aren't any mutant monsters, so don't expect yexils, centisteeds, or land sharks.

In terms of character depth, the author did a good job on both characters. I like that Hella isn't a stone-cold survivalist or incapably weak, but instead treads the middle ground. Yeah, she grew up in an apocalyptic world, but she's still a person with emotions, strengths, and weaknesses. Stampede isn't as fleshed out, but still a likable father figure archetype. On a similar note, Hella benefits the most from character growth, which is understandable since she's basically the main character, but I would liked to have seen more.

Unfortunately, there are some grammar and spelling errors, along with some cluttered sentences that could have benefited greatly from some cleanup and mixing up the adjectives now and then, but not nearly as bad as Seal of Karga Kul. Despite these shortcomings, it was still a pretty good read, and I'd recommend it to Gamma World fans with a 7 out of 10.

{ 1 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. So why no March of the Phantom Brigade, Week 7 (or 6)?

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