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50 Years of Boss Fights (ePub)

Video Game Legends

Colour eBooks Hobbies & Lifestyle > Gaming Photographic eBooks

By Daryl Baxter
Imprint: White Owl
File Size: 46.1 MB (.epub)
ISBN: 9781399013581
Published: 30th June 2024


£9.98 Print price £22.00

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50 Years of Boss Fights celebrates a fading art in modern games. Author Daryl Baxter has written about 51 bosses that have made the greatest impact, ever since the first boss debuted in 1974.

Full of interviews and insights from the developers who helped made the bosses as memorable as they are, includes those who have worked on Mario 64, DOOM, Bioshock, Star Wars, Half Life and many more. Some explained how they came to be, what was scrapped, and, ultimately, if they were happy with them, looking back.

The book goes into detail about the first ever boss from the start, called the Golden Dragon in dnd, which first debuted in 1974. Heralded as the first ever boss in a video game, Daryl spoke to its creators about how it came to be, and how they feel about creating a standard in games.

The book sheds light on what was scrapped in other bosses, and how some bosses were so illegal, they had to be updated in rapid fashion to avoid a potential lawsuit.

Full of photos that showcase how the bosses work and how to beat them, it’s a 50-year record of the best, the most challenging, and the most memorable that you may or may not have beaten so far.

It’s 70,000 words that celebrate the past 50 years of bosses, while giving insight by the developers who helped make them possible.

Boss fights are pretty cool, aren’t they? It’s easy to forget, in a time where a title like Elden Ring can have over 100 named bosses, that they had a rather humble beginning. 50 Years of Boss Fights is a deep dive into the history of the climactic clash of giants throughout our favourite hobby’s history. A blend of descriptive narrative and informative anecdotes from the minds behind the madness, it’s a fun read for any video game enthusiast.

Read the full review here!

Finger Guns

As mentioned on The Finger Guns Podcast!

Listen to the episode here!

The Finger Guns Podcast

As seen in '50 Years of Boss Fights – new book published'.

Read the article here!

Old School Gamer Magazine

As seen in 'The surprising true story of gaming's first ever boss battle: "We’d be really, really rich now"'.

Read the article here!

Radio Times

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

It was great to read more about video games and add a couple that I want to try.

NetGalley, Marietere Torres

As a lifelong gamer I have to say Daryl Baxter’s 50 Years of Boss Fights was an enjoyable trip down memory lane (some recent and some long ago memories). While I wasn’t familiar with all of the games/bosses, I found the in-depth examination of the games/bosses and the little extras to be fascinating... Fun book for those that enjoy reading about games as much as they enjoy playing them.

NetGalley, Lyle Phelps

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This was a really interesting book about video games, it worked with what I was looking for and thought the overall story was being told perfectly. I thought Daryl Baxter wrote this perfectly and had that research element that I wanted. I enjoyed learning about some boss fights that I was looking for.

NetGalley, Kathryn McLeer

50 Years of Boss Fights was a fun nonfiction profiling many memorable video game bosses. As someone who enjoys reading nonfiction about video games, I was excited to read this one.

I enjoyed the profiles of the bosses and the games they were from (even though I had never heard of some of the games) and I also liked the photos that accompanied each game... Overall this is definitely worth the read if you like books about video games. It was really interesting.

NetGalley, Natalie Engel

This is an interesting exploration of how the concept of the end-of-level boss was first conceived and how it has developed in subsequent games over the decades. Quite a lot of the bosses turned out to be from the same series of games, and I was surprised how few of the featured games I've actually played - maybe I'll get around to them one day, who knows.

NetGalley, Melanie Dolhun

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I have loved video games for years and one of the constant gaming memories is often fighting and losing Boss Fights so it was great to reminisce about different Boss Fights and learn about bosses from games that I haven't played yet.

NetGalley, A D

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

50 Years of Boss Fights - Video Game Legends by Daryl Baxter is an absolute blinder of a book! Whether you are GenX, a gamer, a cultural historian, a lover of cartoons or just someone who loves a good boss fight in all its forms, this is defo the book for you

I am GenX and I still get chills when I see Bahamut and Sephiroth, giving hundreds, yes hundres of hours of my 20s to playing every single minutae of FFVII ad FFVIII... and FFX, FFX-2, FFXIII (you get the idea) But not only does this book cover the epics of PS lover history, but also the greats of Nintendo, Sega, XBox and PC (plus many more)

I really enjoy how this book is clearly written from a first-hand perspective, and Daryl Baxters passion for the pastime is utterly infectious! I think I have mentioned before that it is always a real joy to read a gamer book of sheer happiness without judgement and that is what you get here, just an utter delight at the journey to and foray into battles with the 16-bit to hi-res legends we may have let slip from our consciousness, but are never forgotten. Bravo, an absolutely stunning book!

NetGalley, Ink Reads

About Daryl Baxter

Daryl Baxter is a writer and podcaster from Lincoln, where his work has featured in sites such as WIRED, TechRadar, SUPERJUMP, Den of Geek and many more. Alongside Sonic and Metal Gear, Tomb Raider was a series he grew up with, wanting to create a writing career borne out of games.
He’s interviewed people in the industry such as David Hayter; the voice of Solid Snake, Ed McMillen who co-created Super Meat Boy, and plenty more throughout his career so far.

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