World as Game


I am reading snippets of the new Arenaverse book by Ryk Spoor. He is releasing bits of the forthcoming 3rd installment of the series on his Goodreads page. I have enjoyed these books, especially the second in the series: Spheres of Influence (Grand Central Arena #2), The books tell the science fiction story about characters from our Earth who launch into space and encounter an all powerful Alien construct which limits, regulates and controls the actions of all the species in the universe. This Arena provides a place for the different groups to interact with and compete with each other, while limiting their actions. This super construct has existed for millions of years and was only waiting for humans to attempt faster-than-light travel to introduce humanity to the shared “game.”

The stories sync with ideas I have been toying with about how we accomplish things in the world. Most of our human endeavors are possible because of preparation, forceful action, and understanding of why people make the choices they do. Somewhat like playing a game. Like when playing chess or solitaire, you have a better chance of winning by laying the ground work for potential moves you may need to take in the future. When engaged in military action, armies prepare the ground by training their troops, stockpiling equipment, and staging materials where they might be needed. In business, preparing for eventualities prevents disasters and provides the potential for successes.

I’m thinking a useful way of thinking about human life, is that it exists within a set of interacting game simulations. There is the game that involves the physical materials around us, the sun sends down radiant energy, the ocean has waves and living creatures, weather is constructed by winds and heat and moisture in the air. There is another game that accounts for our closest family and friends. We interact daily based on a set of rules we partially understand, and partially make up as we go along. Then, very importantly, there is the game of politics, government, and economics. If you don’t go to work and acquire money, you will have difficulty getting along in the city you live. If you don’t obey the laws, the government will take an interest in you. You may get in so much trouble, that you are placed into a simulated world with bars, guards, and other prisoners.

So, what does this line of thinking mean? What is the point, what can we do if this theory is useful? One outcome is that we can take a rational approach to playing the games we are interacting in. Behave toward those around you so that you benefit. Don’t take it personally if a particular game does not work out for you. Try to find the games that work best for you. Understand that your dog or cat is playing a game of getting your attention to get petting and treats. For example if someone, hypothetically were writing fiction books in the hope of a successful career, that gameplayer should try to learn the rules and how the game of successful book publishing works.

This talk of the world as a game or simulation is not new. At least, since the dawn of the computer age, people have floated the idea of the world as simulation. Youtube contains several videos under the topic “world simulation theory.” Fiction is filled with variations on this theme. The Matrix movie depends on accepting a world where the characters live in a world created by computers to simulate a real world. The end of this article will contain some links to longer writings about the ideas of the world as simulation. Where I think my ideas differ from most of these other approaches to the world as simulation, is I suggest this approach as a scientific model for our use to help us accomplish goals that we choose. I don’t suggest there is any greater power organizing these games for any planned goal. I don’t believe a sophisticated computer is responsible for this world we believe we are living in. I suggest we can use the model of the world as a set of games to help us live in the world. I also say there is not one game, but, instead there are a large number of games that play roles in different parts of our lives and in the world.

Thank you for giving me a few moments to share my ideas. I hope that you come away from this with a positive outlook on your life. Perhaps, there is a message here in the current state of politics in the United States.

Find Ryk Spoor books at: and

Writings about the world as a simulation at:


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