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Crichton's Notes


Game blobs are sophisticated organic-matrix virtual-reality machines that look like lumps of Jell-O. To use a game blob, players simply touch one with bare flesh; the players see a sparkle of light, then they become mentally immersed in a very detailed computer-generated world.

Most game blobs are of the porn variety. Others would make the Sega people weep with shame and envy. The environments are incredibly rich, and players can carry on fully spontaneous conversations with almost any game-generated character. Players can even feel pain, depending on how the levels are set. (That's not necessarily a good thing, but it definitely adds to the realism.)

Some of the best designers, such as the famous Yoti, base their games on real adventures. To do this, they buy the neural templates of the people who experienced the events, then use those memories to build the game world. Game designers pay for interesting neural templates the way wig designers used to pay people for their long, luxuriously thick hair.

Playing one of these games is almost always safe, according to Chiana. If you die in the game, it simply re-sets the level. Real-life injuries caused by a game blob are very rare.

Naturally, there is one caveat: While you're in the game, you lose all awareness of the real world, and your real body is helpless. Exiting the game is supposed to be easy — the games all have standard safety words that enable you to leave just by saying you want to — but that doesn't mean you should try to play one of these games when you're in a potentially risky situation ... for instance, while piloting a Transport Pod through space.

So when did Chi want to play? Take a wild guess.


John Quixote