From the beloved author of The Once and Future Geek comes this action-packed adventure set in a futuristic world filled with magic, monsters, and high-tech video gaming.
One wrong move, and it's game over.
Welcome to Dragon Ops, the world's first augmented-reality video-game theme park. Set on a once-deserted island, our three beta players—classic gamer geek Ian; his adventure-seeking sister, Lily; and their too-cool-for-gaming cousin, Derek—have been lucky enough to score an invite to play before the fully immersive experience opens to the public.
But once inside, they find themselves trapped in a game taken over by a rogue AI dragon called Atreus, and suddenly the stakes go beyond the virtual world. With no cheat codes, guidebooks, save points, or do-overs, they'll need all their cunning and video-game hacks to beat the game . . . and survive in real life.
Action-packed and unputdownable, Dragon Ops will thrill gamers and reluctant readers alike with high-tech adventure and electrifying twists and turns.
When avid gamer Ian Rivera, 12, gets the once-in-a-lifetime chance to test out Dragon Ops a fully immersive augmented reality theme park based on his favorite video game before its release, he leaps at the opportunity, even if he has to share the experience with his sister, Lilli, and cousin Derek, neither of whom appreciate the visit to the remote South Pacific island on which it's situated. Shortly after the three gear up to begin their adventure, the game's end boss, dragon Atreus, traps them inside, kidnapping Derek and assigning Ian and Lilli a quest. They must find and defeat Atreus within three days, "no save points. No do-overs," and any game-side fatality will result in their deaths. Luckily, they have the assistance of an AI guide named Yano, and Ikumi, an experienced fellow player, to compensate when Ian discovers that his in-game experiences haven't prepared him for the more physical demands of the setting. With this adventure, Mancusi (Geeks and the Holy Grail) employs common gaming tropes, interweaving fantasy and mundane elements to create a world that feels familiar and yet enjoyably dangerous. The concepts rogue AIs, theme parks gone haywire may be well visited, but Mancusi successfully delivers a sense of urgency to her entertaining tale. Ages 8 12.