Life is like an extremely difficult, horribly unbalanced videogame.

When you’re born, you’re given a randomly generated character, with a randomly determined name, race, face, and social class. Your body is your avatar, and you spawn in a random geographic location, at a random moment in human history, surrounded by a random group of people, and then you have to try and survive for as long you can.

Sometimes the game might seem easy. Even fun. Other times it might be so difficult you want to give up and quit. But unfortunately, in this game you only get one life. When you’re body grows too hungry or thirsty or ill or injured or old, your health meter runs out and then it’s Game Over.

Some people play the game for a hundred years without even figuring out that it’s a game, or that there is a way to win it. To win the videogame of life you just have to try to make the experience of being forced to play it as pleasant as possible, for yourself, and for all of the other players you encounter in your travels. Kira says that if everyone played the game to win, it’d be a lot more fun for everyone.

Anorak’s Almanac, chapter 77, Cline, E., 2020. Ready Player Two.