CHRONICLES of a PC Gamer Stuck Inside an RPG: Book One: Duelist

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A HARDCORE, SLICE-OF-LIFE LITRPG!

Meet Lawrence Eugene Mulligan. By day, he is a fantasy writer in his mid-30s with a questionable work ethic. By night, he is a hardcore PC gamer who enjoys power leveling his way through one fantasy RPG after another. After one such typical day and night, Lawrence wakes up to find himself in a new world, a fantasy gaming world.

Told mainly from Lawrence's perspective, CHRONICLES follows the adventures of a seriously flawed main character as he seeks to achieve the game's objective: to become king. Or else, he will spend the rest of his life trapped inside this gaming world. Along the way, Lawrence will meet NPCs who will either help him or hinder him in his quest. He must carefully choose which persons, factions, and gods to align with. His well-traveled journey will take him from a frontier town on the Western end of the continent of Britannia to other parts of the Kingdom of Merlin, as well as to other elemental planes.

CHRONICLES is an unusual story which heavily emphasizes the slice-of-life element, and the book spends an average of 15 chapters to cover each day of Lawrence's life in this new world. Book One follows the protagonist as he learns the way of the sword and becomes a duelist by happenstance rather than by choice. The first book covers only his first week inside the gaming world

 

My Opinion: 727 pages, $4.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

A slice of life LitRPG story that covers the main character (MC), Larry’s, 1st week in a RPG game world. That’s right, that’s 100 pages per day of the story.

The first 1% is my favorite part of the story. It has a middle aged LitRPG author trying to meet a publisher’s deadline while trying to resist the temptation of playing his latest video game Merlin: Mage Supreme. The scene is funny, full of self-deprecating humor and as writer I can tell you that the struggle to resist playing video games when you should be writing is real.

However, the novel basically goes downhill from there as the MC falls asleep and wakes up to find himself transported into the RPG game world where he assumes he must become ruler to get transported home.

From there it’s a slice of life story as the MC makes plans to rule the kingdom and level up. He meets several people, woman mostly, that will help him on his way. However, there are other forces that are interested in who becomes king including another player from his world.

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The story itself is not bad. It’s just ok. There are just way too many unexplained plot twist.

My biggest issue with the novel are: 1) This thing is way too long. 2) There’s a consistent issue with tenses that’s distracting.

The length of the novel is explained as a consequence of the story being written on the Royal Road as a serial story over the course of a year. When reading it as a whole though you can tell there’s a lot of stuff in the story that isn’t needed. I don’t mean character development stuff but literally stuff that has no bearing on the story. For example, it takes the author 7 paragraphs to describe the MC getting up from his seat at an inn, walking up a set of stairs, and opening the door to his room. This kind of stuff happens a lot in the novel. The Mc goes off on some thought tangent (like 5 paragraphs about the waitress possibly getting him committed and taking his money) or a scene is overly described.

The other big issue for me is the regular shifts in tense in the story. The novel switches between 3rd person past tense and omniscient 1st person from MC, sometimes mid sentence. Sometimes it’s jarring and will make the story hard to read for some folks.

Ie: “If papa knew that she had followed the stupid human home, then Kalistro would be aware of how she had purposely driven me into physical exhaustion.” The last ‘me’ refers to the MC, who isn't even in this scene. Happens fairly regularly.

There are other small game mechanic issues or small inconsistencies but these are the big issues with the story.

Overall, the promising start to the story just sort of disappears. It’s not a bad story but these issues just kept me from enjoying the story as much as I wanted to.

 

Score: 6 out of 10

CHRONICLES of a PC Gamer Stuck Inside an RPG: Book One: Duelist

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