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Arena Mode

(The Arena Mode Saga #1)

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  1,576 ratings  ·  148 reviews
The Arena Mode Saga has over 500 Five-Star Reviews across Amazon and Goodreads, and is Kickstarter's #1 selling science-fiction series of all time.

In his twenty-nine years, Matthew Moxon had done virtually nothing with his record-breaking IQ and unparalleled problem solving abilities. Until one morning, after a dangerous fall lands him in the emergency room, he discovers
Kindle Edition, 355 pages
Published January 31st 2014 by Noösphere Publishing (first published January 1st 2013)
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Sal The book is centered around a fighting tournament, but the story is more than just about the fight. It has other plot points beyond just winning a tou…moreThe book is centered around a fighting tournament, but the story is more than just about the fight. It has other plot points beyond just winning a tournament. However, in my opinion the battle is where the heart of the book is.(less)

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Average rating 3.74  · 
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 ·  1,576 ratings  ·  148 reviews

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As "X meets Y" marketing phrases are quite popular these days, Arena Modes sells under Superheroes meet The Hunger Games.

In a world where superhumans came out of the closet, billionaire Cameron Frost organizes the Arena Mode, a tournament where 13 superhumans face off against each other and the winner takes away the prize money of 10 billion dollars.

For comic enthusiast Matthew Moxon winning is not the goal. He only wants to make it into the final four to earn 5 million dollars to treat the gia
What if superhumans were real? What if they came out of the closet to reveal themselves to the world? And what if, some of them were the 1% and accepted billionaire Cameron Frost’s opportunity to pit their superhuman powers against each other in the ring for a chance at ten billion dollars?

Matthew Moxon lives in this dystopian future and is thrilled to see his love of comic books turned into fantasy. Unfortunately, a brain tumour puts a downer on his life, leaving the Arena Mode tournament as h
Sep 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I purchased and pledged both the digital ebook and the hard copy through Kickstarter.

As a female reader, I had my doubts about this book. It's not a secret to know and understand that the comics genre is not very kind to female readers or characters (in some ways it's getting better, in others not so much). I usually wait for a book to come out and get a decent amount of reviews before making my purchase so getting this book through Kickstarter was a new experience for me. Since I was going to p
Brian Newland
Nov 13, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What do you get when you combine the hunger games and ready player one? An amateurish mess that is not the sum of its parts. I have no idea how this book got rated so high.
Josh Campbell
Jul 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I bought into Arena Mode from the moment that I read the premise on Kickstarter. A superhuman story with wit, a world that while having some dire problems is not above having moments of joy, and what turns out to be an incredibly fleshed out universe in which this crazed tournament plays out.

That, my friends, is right up my alley.

I pledged so fast my fingers bled, and I made sure to do it at a level at which I could get my hands on a limited paperback copy, as an e-reader still cannot hold my a
Stephen Brophy
May 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As much as I enjoyed Blake Northcott's "vs. Reality" books for what they are, I found "Arena Mode" to be leaps and bounds beyond in terms of characterization, storytelling and the presentation of a professional published package (apologies for the incidental alliteration). Though it could offhandedly be labeled "Hunger Games w/ Superfolks" it's actually a terrific premise that nods to the many comics tales from Marvel's "Secret Wars" onward in which a group of powered people are thrown together ...more
Aug 12, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: worst-i-ve-read
I got this book as part of a free promotion, and I'm glad that's where it came from.

I really wanted to like this book as it was by someone who posts to the imgur site and seemed like it had a good premise. Sadly, the book itself was a collection of cliched ideas and comic book fan-service. I can't criticize the style much further without professing some great knowledge I don't possess. Overall, I can just say some of the editorial and stylistic choices were not those I would have made.

The plotl
Sep 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Arena Mode is really a classic story about growing up and finding your way in the world .told in a way feels very familiar, but has enough interesting twists to keep your attention. I liked the characters and could relate to the Matthew as the hero fighting against all odds, meeting girls, finding friends and fighting foes along the way.
There is the terrifying father figure (think a more evil Donald Trump) and the girl next door who Matthew wants to be with but has a hard time committing to be
Lady Entropy
Cyberpunk and superheroes, this should be the perfect combination for me. Unfortunately, it was overwhelmingly.... meh.

Oh, the main character was sympathetic and he had a strong plight, the right motivation and the desperate odds. The final twist was solid if somewhat puzzling (especially how the villain went from "I don't care if someone else pretty much disables my prey as long as I get the kill" to "I will give you a sporting chance because I totally want this to be fair").

However, the settin
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I will premise this by stating I supported it on Kickstarter as the concept seemed very interesting.

As soon as the e-book came out I downloaded it and often heard from my significant other over the next couple of days, what is that you are reading because you never put it down. I really liked the style, concept and setting. The main character was someone you could root for also.

It was nice to see the a bit of a different take on superheroes it reminded me of the tv show heroes mixed with battle
Jun 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
After being blown up by Vs. Reality, I had quite some expectations about this new trilogy. Arena Mode did not disappoint, a outstanding easy reading, it flows like water. Supes, what are supes? well She will tell you what superhumans are, and how they cease to be. fast paced action, itty bits of romance and nice fight, struggle descriptions will give you an overview of New York year 2041. A must read for fans of comics, sci-fi, adventure books.
Sep 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I backed the Kickstarter for this project so got a couple of different formats, goodies, extras and whatnot, including the recently released audio-book version. So...y'know...WOOHOO!

Anyway, I can tell you that I enjoyed this book immensely. And I think I can say what I want without any real spoilers, so bear with me.

The story moves along at a more or less comic-book pace, easily read within a day or two. Partly due to it's ability to hold the/my attention and partly because it's not especially
An entertaining page turner that chronicles one normal man's life and death struggle against superhumans. It read rather like a comic book with a typical evil final boss, lucky events that save the day for the hero, and of course a romantic subplot. There wasn't a whole lot of depth either in characters or in the plot, though. Nor was there any real explanation for the super abilities and their ramifications on the world. I'm interested in seeing what Blake comes out with in the next few years, ...more
Adam Maxwell
May 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fun "comic made real" romp with a dash of cyberpunk, Arena Mode riffs off our love for reality television & over the top comic book action blockbusters and mixes that on top of an undercurrent of the dissatisfaction with the growing inequality gap in the west.

The resulting jam is a slightly nerdy delight and a perfect choice for a quick, fun, read. Especially for comic book readers or the YA crowd.
Jul 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such a great book! The writing was fantastic and the main character was well developed and felt like a real person. I think Blake Northcott is a great writer and she is now on my list of favorite modern day authors. I would recommend this book to everyone who loves the super hero genre. Disclosure: I was a Kickstarter backer and I received a copy of the book for my contribution.
Charlie Chen
Jul 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Overall I would give 3.5. The book was good and I was glad to have supported the kickstart. But there are many times in the story that I relate this to other books. That is the main reason I didn't give a 4 or 4.5.

The way of speech also gives away bits of suspense as it is clear as day what happens overall. But there is a good surprise at the end if a connection was not made early on
Don Sam
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed every page, was a fun read.
Dusty Craine
Jul 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Arena Mode was great. In a very brief description: It's The Avengers meets Hunger Games.

Longer review coming soon.
Jan 14, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great story, could use some editing.
Dave Lefevre
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fun and not what I expected (in a good way). I am happy to have contributed to this Kickstarter project.

Aug 13, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a cracking blend of super hero/battle royale/reality tv. Not gonna win the Booker prize but it's a rollicking good read.
Jul 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you like superheroes, or even if you don't ( it isn't your typical hero novel ), read this book. Now.
Jun 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
Another great offering in the super-human genre from Blake. Epic battles, wit, humour... the only thing missing is the sequel :)
Jacob Feldman
Jul 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Occasionally relies too much on cliche, but overall a fun read. Great ending!
Fun, not an original plot, but a fun read
Alicia Huxtable
Dec 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Right from the start this book reminded me of The Hunger Games with a few differences. I wanted to like it but just couldn't get into it
Brian Ashenfelter
Jun 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If Kick-Ass had a baby and it was a novel, it's name would be Arena Mode.
Chad Manske
Sep 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A mix of Hunger Games, Heroes and Ender's Game, the first book of this trilogy is fantastic!
Nov 29, 2019 rated it it was ok
This book always gets hyped as Hunger Games meets superheroes.
Probably because that's basically what it is.
But where I like the Hunger Games and I LOVE superheroes, I cannot say the same about this book.
Yes, while the tournament and the fights hold some suspense (absolutely necessary with a plot as thin as this book's), but the setting and the premise of the Arena Mode death match make little to no sense, the existence of supers is an unexplained given in the setting and I found out the novel is
Jul 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: defenders-vs-wca, kev
This was a fun short read that I just couldn't take seriously. Super-humans exist, some can fly, others shot lasers out of their eyes and some can channel electricity. Sound familiar? So what does the world decide to do? Let one billionaire clear out Manhattan and stage a 'Battle Royale' with a 10 billion dollar price tag, while the world watches.
Hardly an original concept. But still fun and action packed. Not sure if I will read the rest but i'm not adverse to it.
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Blake Northcott is a Canadian author and comic book writer.

Northcott's 'Arena Mode Saga' is Kickstarter's most-funded science-fiction series of all time, and the first book in the series was nominated for Britain's prestigious BSFA (Best Novel of 2013).

The series went on to sell over 250,000 copies worldwide and has received over a thousand five-star reviews across multiple platforms.

Blake was a

Other books in the series

The Arena Mode Saga (3 books)
  • Assault or Attrition (The Arena Mode Saga, #2)
  • Final Empire (The Arena Mode Saga, #3)

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