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Ready Player One | Quotes


The moment I began searching for the egg, the future no longer seemed so bleak.

Wade Watts, Level 1, Chapter 0001

Wade Watts is an orphan living in poverty during a time when human civilization is collapsing. He sees winning the contest as the one way he can escape his circumstances and live a better life.


Aech and I ... agreed ... clans were for suck-asses and poseurs. We'd ... vowed to remain solos.

Wade Watts, Level 1, Chapter 0003

Wade Watts and Aech are fiercely independent gunters who look down on other gunters who assist each other in the quest. They are proud of their self-acquired knowledge and skill. Ironically, Wade, Aech, and the other top gunters will be forced to collaborate as the quest progresses.


He'd left home ... with nothing but ... wits and ... imagination, and he'd used them to attain ... fame and ... fortune.

Wade Watts, Level 1, Chapter 0005

Wade Watts expresses his admiration for James Halliday, the creator of the OASIS. To Wade, Halliday's life provides a singular example of how a person can overcome limitations and achieve success.


I was obsessed. I wouldn't quit. My grades suffered. I didn't care.

Wade Watts, Level 1, Chapter 0006

Wade Watts describes how his obsession with learning the minutiae of Halliday's beloved 1980s pop culture takes over his life. He devotes himself entirely to this study as he sees winning the contest, rather than his school education, as his sole path out of poverty and despair.


The Earth is dying ... It's time to leave.

Wade Watts, Level 1, Chapter 0009

When Wade Watts and Art3mis encounter each other for the first time inside the Tomb of Horrors, they discuss their respective plans for the prize money. Wade cynically says he'd use it to escape Earth on a spaceship and find a better place to live. Art3mis, who is more idealistic, says she'd use it to fix the pressing problems confronting humanity.


It had become ... a pleasant place ... to hide from ... problems while ... civilization ... collapses.

Ogden Morrow, Level 1, Chapter 0012

In his autobiography, OASIS co-creator Ogden Morrow explains his reasons for retiring from GSS after the OASIS was released. He believes the OASIS is simply an elaborate distraction that will ultimately prove harmful to humanity.


Halliday's contest doesn't have any rules. That's one of the many colossal mistakes the old fool made.

Nolan Sorrento, Level 1, Chapter 0014

When Wade Watts meets with Nolan Sorrento at IOI headquarters inside the OASIS, Sorrento explains the Sixers' collaborative strategy for finding the egg. Sorrento deflects Wade's assertion that the Sixers are cheating by expressing his contempt for James Halliday. Sorrento plans to win the contest by any means necessary.


I would abandon the real world altogether until I found the egg.

Wade Watts, Level 1, Chapter 0016

After IOI destroys the stacks where Wade Watts lives, killing everyone he knew in real life, Wade adopts a fictitious identity and holes up in an apartment in Ohio. Conflict in the quest has spilled over into Wade's real life, and he vows not to leave his apartment until he wins the contest.


You live inside this illusion ... You can't possibly know what real love is.

Art3mis, Level 2, Chapter 0018

After Wade Watts confesses his love to Art3mis at Ogden Morrow's birthday party, she severs their relationship, insisting it isn't real and it distracts them from the quest. She claims Wade can't really love her because he doesn't know who she is in real life.


This part of the day ... contradicted my other life. My real life, inside the OASIS.

Wade Watts, Level 2, Chapter 0019

After Art3mis severs her relationship with Wade Watts and he and Aech drift apart, Wade finds himself friendless. He realizes he must take care of his real, physical body so he can complete the quest, but he does it resentfully because it reminds him the OASIS is not real.


I'd been kidding myself ... The bad guys were going to win.

Wade Watts, Level 2, Chapter 0024

Wade Watts is stumped by the clue on the Jade Key and becomes despondent when the Sixers find the Crystal Key and take the lead in the contest. Wade believes the contest has already been lost to the Sixers and makes plans to commit suicide.


We live here, in the OASIS. For us, this is the only reality that has any meaning.

Wade Watts, Level 2, Chapter 0025

When Wade Watts meets with Shoto in the wake of Daito's murder, Shoto expresses regret that he never met Daito in real life. Wade tries to console him by saying relationships inside the OASIS are the only important ones. Because their lives are consumed by the quest, the OASIS is the real world for gunters.


If none of the passwords worked, I would have sold myself into lifelong slavery.

Wade Watts, Level 3, Chapter 0030

Wade Watts expresses anxiety about his plan to become an indentured servant at IOI so he can hack into their private servers and find a way to bring down the shield around Castle Anorak. He had previously purchased company passwords on the black market, but now that he is IOI company property, he worries he will not only fail at the quest but also become a lifelong slave of the corporation he hates.


I would do everything I could to protect the spirit and integrity of the contest.

Ogden Morrow, Level 3, Chapter 0033

Ogden Morrow makes himself visible to Wade Watts, Art3mis, Aech, and Shoto in a chat room and says he has been watching them and has decided to offer his help. The Sixers are on the verge of winning the quest, and Morrow sees their tactics as a violation of Halliday's vision for the contest. The top gunters' lives are in danger because Sorrento wants them dead, so Morrow offers them his house in Oregon as a safe place where they can finish the quest.


As terrifying and painful as reality can be, it's ... the only place where you can find ... happiness.

James Halliday, Level 3, Chapter 0038

When Wade Watts finds the egg, James Halliday's avatar, Anorak, appears. He gives Wade his robes as well as his powers and money. Anorak transforms his appearance so he looks like the real James Halliday, and he tells Wade he created the OASIS as an escape because he was afraid of reality. He says he regrets choosing video games over the real world and urges Wade not to make the same mistake.

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