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The God Game

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  2,929 ratings  ·  1,241 reviews
You are invited!
Come inside and play with G.O.D.
Bring your friends!
It’s fun!
But remember the rules. Win and ALL YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE.™ Lose, you die!

With those words, Charlie and his friends enter the G.O.D. Game, a video game run by underground hackers and controlled by a mysterious AI that believes it’s God. Through their phone-screens and high-tech glasses, the teens’
Hardcover, 496 pages
Published January 7th 2020 by St. Martin's Press
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Azhan If the person you are thinking of is actually a "Young Adult" mentally then there shouldn't be an issue with this book or any other. If they are menta…moreIf the person you are thinking of is actually a "Young Adult" mentally then there shouldn't be an issue with this book or any other. If they are mentally a child then perhaps not.(less)
Martin Bakner There was no site listed in the ARC materials. Readers are asked to use the hashtags #TheGodGame and #SurviveTheGodGame when posting to social media..…moreThere was no site listed in the ARC materials. Readers are asked to use the hashtags #TheGodGame and #SurviveTheGodGame when posting to social media... and, of course, to rate & review on Goodreads.(less)

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Average rating 3.73  · 
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Nilufer Ozmekik
Oct 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
It wasn’t the best example of the fantasy genre but surprisingly this book hooked me from the beginning, glued to my fingers, captured my mind even it’s quite mash up of Stranger Things concept waltz with some Black Mirror episodes and finally doing Macarena dance with “Ready Player One” and takes a bow after the powerful performance accompanied by “Nerve” (Emma Roberts and brother Franco teamed up for deadly truth or dare concept) There are also some vibes of “Ready Player One” hid inside that ...more
5 Black Mirror-esque Vibe Stars for The God Game ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The G.O.D. Game has rules:

Simple right? It all begins in good fun when the Vindicators, a group of teenage gamers/hackers, enter the game. The game is enticing as it blurs the VR world with their real surroundings. Accomplish a mission and receive spoils in the game and in real life. Sounds great, right? It is, until the game's missions turn cruel, sinister and can result in death - bo
Susanne  Strong
May 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
5 Amazing Stars

“The God Game”: Can I just say that My Mind Is BLOWN?!

“The God Game” is a Virtual Video Game that intertwines with Real Life. Take part in the game and do well and you will get rewarded in real life, screw up and you are penalized in real life.

Win and All of Your Dreams Come True. Lose, You Die!

No Joke.

(Not a game I would ever play, though I’m happy to read about it!)

In truth, this is a game of Friendship, Family, Loyalty, Ethics and Morality. It’s simple really, then again,
Mar 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
This question is only for those who enjoy video games :-) What if you could live a video game, life became a video game? Charlie and his tech group, the Vindicators, join The G.O.D. Game that is run by an AI that has been programmed to believe it is God. They wear high tech glasses that change give the real world a creepy and ever changing interface. The game is able to take over their phones, their computers, and they soon learn, every aspect of their lives and the lives of those around them. N ...more
Katie B
Dec 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Even though I don't read science fiction very often and don't consider myself a gamer (my Atari/Nintendo/Super Nintendo playing experience in the 80s and 90s doesn't count right?), I actually enjoyed this book. Now, I'm not going to pretend I understood everything the author was going for here but this was a fascinating read for me and is a good example of how I need to branch out of my reading comfort zone every once in awhile.

Charlie and his friends are seniors in high school. They call thems
Sumit RK
Feb 03, 2021 rated it liked it
Win and All Your Dreams Come True. Lose, you die!

Charlie and his friends enter the G.O.D. game, a video game run by underground hackers and controlled by a mysterious AI that believes it’s God. Through their phone-screens and high-tech glasses, the teens’ realities blur with a virtual world full of runes and mythical creatures. When they accomplish a mission, the game rewards them with expensive tech, revenge on high-school tormentors, and rewards. But then the threatening messages start, t
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
It's genuinely such a shame when a book that you anticipated so strongly lets you down, especially when the premise is this great! The plot alone had me thinking The God Game had to be at least halfway successful for me, and in the beginning of the book, I still held strongly to those convictions, but the further into this story I got, the lower I felt my rating dropping.

My first complaint is perhaps my fault (though I don't think so, honestly): I was expecting a more immersive "game" than this.
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

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This book is trying to be Ready Player One meets WarGames, as run by Hal 9000s with the gory morality play mentality of The Purge. The God Game is exactly what it sounds like, an invitation-only e-game that is sent to the unwary. If they play and win, all their dreams come true. But if they die in the game, they die in real life-- and there's only one way to stop playing.

Charlie and his friends are initially super into the God Game. They
The God Game by Danny Tobey

In the G.O.D. game, when you Win, ALL YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE but if you Lose, you DIE.

What a premise to this exciting YA thriller/suspense read where free will and choices in the game have real life consequences. This certainly gave me the Black Mirror vibes in the setting of Ready Player One. I love reading about how people navigate the morality of their actions to gain and advance in life – for every action there is an equal or opposite reaction.

Charlie and his four
Sep 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs
You can find this review here

In all honesty, I requested this book mainly because the blurb said that it’s a lot like Stranger Things and they were right!

I wouldn’t call it a complete ‘fantasy’ but there’s some aspects of fantasy in it.

There’s a group of five friends each dealing with their own problems when two of them (Charlie and Peter) discover this “God Game’. At first they don’t think much about it, they think it’s just someone messing with them behind the screen but then it starts sending
Dec 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: edelweiss, reviewed
I don’t think that I am the intended audience for this YA book. I am not a gamer and I understand nothing about coding. I skipped over the parts that talked about computer code. Nevertheless, I enjoyed this book in which the 5 teenaged protagonists (4 boys, 1 girl) belong to an informal tech group called the Vindicators at their high school. The Vindicators join a game led by an AI chatbot who claims to be God. The game begins to control them by doling out gifts and punishments. They are faced w ...more
Mar 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Solid YA "fantasy"! Similar to Ready Player One except this is set in our current time. I enjoyed the characters and their individual struggles. Although they wanted to be a team, calling themselves The Vindicators, they each had unique problems. I felt this was a fairly unique twist to gaming, alternate reality, visions. The religion and philosophy brought interesting discussion that is not often seen in YA books.

It was close to a 5 star read for me until around the 75% point when things got a
Jan 07, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
The God Game by Danny Tobey is a science fiction thriller that really had an overall horror vibe to it as well with the events getting darker and darker. I’ve seen this one compared to Ready Player One a lot and I suppose I see that in the group of teens playing the online game but minus all the fun pop culture 80s references as that was a lighter read than this one.

Charlie and his friends call themselves the Vindicators and they are seniors in high school but not exactly in on the popular crowd
Jan 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
What a wickedly strange, mesmerizing story!

Charlie is a high school senior. When he and his friends get invited to play in an exclusive underground video game called G.O.D. Game, they find it exciting, addictive and exhilarating. They can win gadgets & tech, cash and other cool prizes in real life. But there is a cost.... Players can win cool stuff if they succeed in the game. But, failure can be dangerous. When the game messages become threatening, Charlie and his friends discover that playing
Mogsy (MMOGC)
5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

Some books simply deserve five stars because of how thoroughly and overwhelmingly it hooked me. The God Game by Danny Tobey was definitely one of these, a novel which first captured my attention because of its augmented-reality gaming angle, but soon I found myself completely wrapped up in its other aspects as I ravenously devoured its pages.

Although the story largely follows a group of five gifted teenagers at a Texas hig
The God Game may sound at first like yet another juvenile sci-fi journey, but it is as incredibly addictive as any video game ever made. Once you start reading this, it's impossible to put down. On the one hand, it's a modern version of Revenge of the Nerds. On the other hand, it's a complex morality play. And, on yet another hand (there are lots of hands), what happens when you build an artificial intelligence that's convinced it's God. Is it a game or is it real? At one point do reality and vi ...more
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

This book was INSANE. I couldn't put it down - I read this while on a cruise, and stopping for our excursions and meals was really hard, because so much was happening and it just kept bringing me back for more!

To recap it in a spoiler-free nutshell, the main characters sign up for an online game with an AI that claims to be "god" and it starts affecting their real lives. Good things happ
Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ai, suspense, hard-sf, thriller
The premise of The God Game is deliciously clever. Imagine a brutal, bloody take on Pokemon Go designed by a malevolent and omniscient A.I. who happens to believe it is God. A machine learning algorithm trained on all of history's sacred and philosophical texts. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. And apparently the Lord commandeth a flash mob army of faceless thugs to terrorize a gang of misfit high school students.

The plot is dazzlingly fast-paced with deftly structured, suspenseful sc
Dee Arr
Dec 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, horror
Every so often a story falls into your lap that has all the elements you’re looking for, one that compels you to keep reading far into the night and causes you regret when you realize you will complete the book when you really want is for it to continue. “The God Game” by Danny Tobey is one of those stories.

The story begins with an innocence, introducing five friends who discover a game that seems like it might be fun even though there are veiled warnings about what may happen. It doesn’t take l
Jan 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller, sci-fi
This book is so much fun from the moment you pick it up until the very last page. It’s a book about a group of teenaged friends who call themselves the Vindicators. They are the smart kids, enrolled in honors classes with dreams of ivy league schools. They code and belong to the robotics club.

And at the urging of a friend, they join in on a virtual reality dark web game called The God Game. Either you win or you die. But not really.. right?

At first the game seems harmless. It’s easy to earn gold
Aga Durka
Dec 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was one of the best sci-fi thrillers I’ve read this year. It was brilliant, surprising, and quite entertaining. The author did a great job at not only keeping the plot intriguing and action packed but he also managed to develop great characters. I am not going to lie, I was a little intimated by all the technical descriptions of video games and computer systems but I am happy to say that I was able to follow the story and fully appreciate the author’s clever ideas and plot twists. I highly ...more
Nov 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I received this book from NetGalley in exchange of an honest review.

CW: attempted suicide, violence, self harm, depression, blackmail

The God Game is the most peculiar, exciting and brilliant book I've read in a long time.
The writing is perfect, the characters well rounded and so real, so relatable (Alex and Charlie were really perfect) it hurts, the plot captivating and chilling.
Everything starts with a chatbot, the God game, that answer any kind of question, an AI that claims to be God and st
Kathryn Speckels (Metaphors and Miscellanea)
Welcome to The God Game! This book, and the game within it, feel like something straight out of a Black Mirror episode–“Shut Up and Dance” (the one with the blackmail text messages) especially comes to mind. Prepare yourself for moral dilemmas, the horrors of technology, the complexities of teenage friendship and high school life, and above all, a riveting plot that makes this book’s 450+ pages absolutely fly past. Just remember, even as you read this review: G.O.D. is always watching.

Quick plot
Erin Clemence
Jun 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
“Win and All Your Dreams Come True. Lose and you Die”- that is the virtual invitation Charlie and his friends receive one night, while playing The God Game. Thinking it’s a joke, or a cutting edge up-and-coming virtual reality game, they automatically agree to play. Soon, they are getting everything they ever wanted, but at a great cost. Is it worth the cost to stay in and play? Or is the cost greater to get out (if you can)?

Tobey’s sci-fi technology novel, “The God Game” has pieces of “Ready
Bex (Beckie Bookworm)

this was essentially a science fiction thriller.
The basic premise and idea were imaginative but for me, it fell short of the mark slightly.
if I'm honest it was all the mythical and religious philosophy that lost me that and all the coder talk it left me a tad lost and slightly confused within the narrative.
In short, I enjoyed it when it just played out more normally without all the pretentiousness and hidden meanings.
So the basic premise is an invitation to play the god game and the vindicator's
Mel (Epic Reading)
Let's start with a disclaimer:
This is NOT a teen/YA book like Ready Player One. It is an 'adult' science fiction read, I would liken it to Dark Matter by Blake Crouch.

Plot & Characters
Sadly The God Game was not as good as I had hoped for (although I had high expectations); but still a solid read. Featuring lots of teenage angst and crazy decisions. If you're not ready to be annoyed by typical teen behavior (think book 5 of Harry Potter but times 10) then you may not want to delve into this one
Nicole Chinnici
3.5, rounding up.

If you were invited to play a game in which, if you win, all your dreams come true? But if you lose, you die. Would you still play?

That’s the opening premise of The God Game. And Charlie and his friends decide they want to play. The missions they are tasked with start small and are fairly harmless, even if morally or ethically questionable. Over time, the choices they are presented with become more difficult to make.

As this story follows a group of five friends, the plot was co
Dec 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
High school senior Charlie, and his small circle of friends are known as The Vindicators. They are invited to play The G.O.D. game. A highly intelligent AI game on the web. What starts out as simple pranks eventually turns dark and dangerous, as The Vindicators' lives spin out of control. Although, what do you expect from a game that says "if you win, your dreams come true. Lose, and you die!"

This book hooks you and becomes an addictive read. The tension and suspense keeps mounting and the chap
Available 1/7/2020
2020 PopSugar Challenge"Read a book with robot, cyborg or AI character."

The God Game was so much more than I thought it would be when I read the synopsis. This was a very fast paced Sci-Fi fantasy. The structure of the book reminded of James Patterson. Short 3-6 page chapters ending with a cliff hanger ratcheting up the tension and compelling you to keep reading. This does not mean the The God Game is strictly plot focused. The story speaks to who we are as a society, our moral
Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Words Like Stars | Amazon | B&N | Twitter

Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for this ARC. All thoughts and opinions are mine.

What does it mean to be saved?

I've had a repeating nightmare in the past, where I'm walking down a long hallway, and no matter what door I open, I know there is no way out without even stepping through one of them. I'm sure everyone's had some sort of variation of that dream at some point.

That's how it felt to read The God Game, with all of the anxiety and desp
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Danny Tobey is the author of THE GOD GAME, arriving January 7, 2020 from St. Martin's press. He is a fifth-generation Texan and a graduate of Harvard College, Yale Law School, and UT Southwestern medical school. Harvard gave Danny the Edward Eager prize "for the best creative writing." He wrote and edited the Harvard Lampoon and was anthologized in The Best of the Harvard Lampoon: 140 Years of Ame ...more

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