• I'm the smartest man in the world. Once I wore a cape in public, and fought battles against men who could fly, who had metal skin, who could kill you with their eyes. I fought CoreFire to a standstill, and the Super Squadron, and the Champions. Now I have to shuffle through a cafeteria line with men who tried to pass bad checks. Now I have to wonder if there will be chocolate milk in the dispenser. And whether the smartest man in the world has done the smartest thing he could do with his life

    Austin Grossman
  • Some days I spent up to three hours in the arcade after school, dimly aware that we were the first people, ever, to be doing these things. We were feeling something they never had - a physical link into the world of the fictional - through the skeletal muscles of the arm to the joystick to the tiny person on the screen, a person in an imagined world. It was crude but real. We'd fashioned an outpost in the hostile, inaccessible world of the imagination, like dangling a bathysphere into the crushing dark of the deep ocean, a realm hitherto inaccessible to humankind. This is what games had become. Computers had their origin in military cryptography - in a sense, every computer game represents the commandeering of a military code-breaking apparatus for purposes of human expression. We'd done that, taken that idea and turned it into a thing its creators never imagined, our own incandescent mythology

    Austin Grossman
  • It was an unfamiliar feeling, waking up with a place to go, a place I was actually beginning to comprehend and face without a sense of terror.More than that, I was even questioning the assumption that I was, in my bones, a scared and anxious and miserable person. It felt like the days were almost supernaturally good, that I could wake up without the usual wave of terror, that the days were admixed with some foreign substance dripping into them, some animating essence, like the dragonborn races of Endoria, dragonborn days. I felt like I'd stumbled on one of the open secrets of the world. Why hadn't I realized before that being a grown-up could be anything you wanted it to be?

    Austin Grossman
  • It's raining outside. How did you get here? And how did you get to be twenty-eight?

    Austin Grossman
  • Chess is a game with simple rules and pieces, a small sixty-four-space board, but there are more possible chess games than there are atoms in the universe

    Austin Grossman
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