Recently, a short story I read in high school, has been on my mind. I do not know what is the name of it. It has been about 6 years since I read it. Here is what I remember about it. An alien race makes itself known to planet Earth. The aliens have created a game (I don't remember if it's a board game or a puzzle game) and they challenge the humans. The world leaders gather all the smartest people to be the team representing planet Earth. If the humans lose, they will either become their slaves or they get killed (I don't remember). That's about as much as I remember.

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    Space Jam?
    – Daft
    Jul 13, 2015 at 12:06
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    Very similar to David Gerrold's Chess with a Dragon where humanity, deep in debt from downloading too much from the galactic library, must play the game or get eaten (or enslaved, or worse). But the players are just the diplomatic team on the spot. The novel has a decidedly humorous tone, and the main character's name is Yake Singh Browne. Jul 18, 2015 at 15:55
  • It's called The Game. But forgot who the author is.
    – user68028
    Jun 26, 2016 at 3:44

1 Answer 1


Jack C Haldeman - older brother of the better known Joe Haldeman - wrote a few sci-fi stories too; one of them was "Home Team Advantage" which is something to do with aliens winning the right to eat all humans based on the outcome of a game of baseball.

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    The story is just as you describe: the Arcturians, by winning the series, won the right to eat all humans. But the game is just baseball, not "a board game or a puzzle game" and not created by the aliens, so I don't think this story is the one we're looking for.
    – user14111
    Jul 18, 2015 at 0:46
  • +1 Thanks for reminding me of these stories! There were at least two (or one split in two), which I read in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine. The main character was called Louisville Slugger and the stories had a goofy style, full of dark humor.
    – Andres F.
    Jul 18, 2015 at 2:13
  • Huh. I remember "Home Team Advantage", although I was remembering Lefty as having a "trick knee", not a "trick ankle".
    – FuzzyBoots
    Jun 26, 2016 at 14:26

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