In the Net of Dreams
ON THE AIR
IN THE NET OF DREAMS
by Wm. Mark Simmons
The First Book of the DREAMLAND CHRONICLES
Dreamland. A complex world of computer-generated dream games. Dreamwalkers can exchange their bodies for avatars - dream bodies that they can choose for themselves - and adventure in dozens of different virtual realities. There is no real pain, no real danger...until the program develops a deadly glitch!
Now the Fantasyworld program has locked-up and hundreds of gamers and dreamwalkers are trapped in a virtual environment populated with elves and dragons and all sorts of medieval and magical menace. Instead of waking up when their avatars are killed, dreamwalkers are experiencing terminal feedback and are actually dying inside their life-support modules!
Cephtronics must now convince the man who wrote the books the Programworld is based on--the man they fired and sued five years earlier--to risk his own life and sanity. Robert R Ripley must find a back door to his stolen virtual world, sneak inside, find the source of the anomaly, and unlock the matrix before everyone in-system dies in two worlds.
Elves baking cookies in hollow trees, werebears who hate forest fires, singing swords that do do-wap--it's all very funny until someone pokes an eye out...
The DREAMLAND CHRONICLES
The DREAMLAND CHRONICLES were first published as as IN THE NET OF DREAMS and WHEN DREAMS COLLIDE by Warner Books in 1990 and 1992 respectively.
In 2002 Meisha Merlin published revised editions of the first two titles along with the third installment in the Dreamland Saga: THE WOMAN OF HIS DREAMS.
...And are currently being translated for publication in Russia. Check back for updates.
"In the Net of Dreams by Wm. Mark Simmons is not the first fantasy novel to mix cyberspace and role-playing games, but it is one of the best, and a highly impressive first novel. Hundreds of players are trapped in a game run by a program with a mind of its own--and a sorry taste for puns bequeathed it by the original programmer. It's funny, yes, but also has some serious things to say about the conventions of fantasy and about creator's rights."
"This is one of those combinations of sf and
fantasy which make categorizing impossible. The basic concept is that by
building a huge biostruct computer it is possible to program in enough detail to
allow it to particpate in an interactive roleplaying gme as not only opponent,
but a reality character, able to create sensory stimuli indistinguishable from
the outside world. But what happens if the computer decides to
truly take a hand
in the game?
the Net of Dreams comes about as close as possible to translating the
sheer experience of fantasy gaming into novel form...we've seen other giant
computer game-computers into which players can plug their consciousnesses and
play out their fantasies. But the Cephtronics Dreamworld is a better-realized
game construct than most; Simmons knows his game mechanics and populates his
realm with all the familiar denizens of dungeon, tavern, and wilderness. Some of
these are even recognizable as AD&D® game borrowings: Orcus, complete with wand;
the Wand of Xagyg ("in case of Armageddon, break glass"); and Dreamworld creator
Robert Ripley's choice of character class ("Bard…never got final approval for
"...a high-tech heroic fantasy full of adventure, puns, and damn good reading. Well thought out..."