The Witch Port Video Game
by Leonard Bassed

"'We were tricked into playing a video game called the Witch Port, and this game transferred powers into us,' Mackenzie informs her."

An innocent night out in NYC changes high school friends Martin Robinson, Francesca Dubois, and Mackenzie Hollister’s lives forever. All this occurs after a seemingly normal encounter with the mobile phone video game called The Witch Port. The three students soon find themselves with magical powers which they link back to the video game. While all seems fun and games at first, the friends end up targeted by the MacQuoid brothers for their unorthodox acquisition of powers. Now tasked with staying alive, will they be able to learn to control their powers in time?

Filled with cheeky references to famous pop-culture stories of sorcery and mixed with some classic teenage angst, this book is a fast-paced, suspenseful story. The novel’s premise that some teenagers gain special powers through a video game is an updated, modern take on magic and suits the story quite well for a 21st-century setting. The author sets up the story mechanisms so that everything that happens through the students’ video game play also happens in real life. There are a few moments where the videogame playthroughs are referenced, but for the most part, the sense of déjà vu is exhibited through Martin’s power of premonition. Although effective, it lessens the gravity of the consequences of playing the video game, delaying the protagonists’ realization that the magic and danger are real. The author states that this novel was originally a screenplay, and those elements shine through, from the descriptive settings to the fast pace in which the action occurs on the page. It will be interesting to see how the protagonists grow with their powers in the sequel.

Return to USR Home