Google's Chrome Games Are a Dream Come True. Is That a Good Thing?

Follow the bouncing ball

Visiting the video arcade at my neighborhood mall in the '80s was both exhilarating and a bit scary. On the one hand, I feared that bigger kids would try to take all my change. (And I mean a physical shakedown, so quarters would spill from my pockets onto the pizza-smeared floor.) The adrenaline rush came from the games themselves. Asteroids, Space Invaders, Radar Scope … I loved them all. As I played, I rarely paid attention to my score. I just grooved on the sights and sounds, thrilled to each synthesized pop! bleep! and ping!, riding waves of pixelated excitement for hours on end. I wanted to meld with those machines and live in that world. Magic machines everywhere! That's what I wanted the future to be like. That was a scary thought, too, but no less wonderful for that.