BladeDust Online: A LitRPG Adventure (Book 1)

When Cody signs up for the first fully-immersive virtual MMORPG, he is amazed at how real the game world is. Unable to pay rent, Cody and his best friend join BladeDust Online as a job replacement. But, they quickly realize it is much more than just a job. It's a world full of magic, mystery and adventure.

In a world where you can be anything, Cody decides to be everything. But, Cody soon finds out all is not right in BladeDust Online. A glitch has trapped the players in the game, and something dark is going on behind the scenes. Cody must grow and become more powerful in this unforgiving game world. Who can he trust? How powerful can he become? And will he ever find love? Only time will tell. Enjoy this LitRPG Adventure.

My Opinion: 358 pages, $3.99 until 2/28/17 normally $4.99, available on Kindle Unlimited

Two guys, Cody and his roommate Tommy are unemployed students that can’t make their next rent payment. So they decide to try to make some money playing a popular full immersion game BladeDust Online. They jump into the game ill prepared and find themselves trapped when a glitch removes the logout button and they become trapped in the game.

I’m going to divide this review into two parts. I’ll describe and comment on the first half of the novel and then I’ll talk about the second half. I do this because they almost feel like different stories.

The first 50% of the book is bad.

The premise itself isn’t bad. I’ve read it before but the story quickly veers away from that and turns into Bill and Ted’s not so Excellent LitRPG Journey.

The entire 1st half of this novel is a series of events that happen to the unusually dumb main characters. They’re led around by their noses by a series of players that take advantage of them and occasionally explain a game mechanic or two. Speaking of which, most of the game mechanics don’t make sense. For example, the odd death system that turns players into ghosts that have to get other players to resurrect them with an expensive potion. But if they don’t get resurrected then bad players can harvest their souls and send them to a virtual soul work camp or something.

The author says that he intended to slowly reveal the game mechanics to the world as if it were a hardcore survival game. Make the players learn as they go. Unfortunately the game world in the story is set up like a fantasy RPG so there are different expectations. There’s also a big difference between slowly revealing the game mechanics and not revealing them or explaining them at all. For example, it’s never explained what the character stats do or why sneak and persuasion are there as stats instead along with strength but something like constitution isn’t. At one point the main characters are advised to raise an army of NPCs but it’s never explained why this is important. There are classes listed but they don’t seem to do anything and are never explored. I could go on but I think you get the idea. The game world isn’t really fleshed out.

Last 50% of the book: It’s not bad. Pretty decent actually.

I feel like the story comes into it’s own in the last half of the book. Cody is separated from his roommate Tommy and sold off as a gladiator on some island. The story turns into a revenge seeking gladiatorial battle as Cody becomes determined to gain power and strength to kill the player that betrayed him and sold him into slavery, Cosmo. The quests after this point are at least more entertaining and feed into the revenge plot and Cody is actually doing something instead of letting things happening to him.

I give the 1st half of this novel a 4 out of 10. The 2nd half gets a 6 out of 10. If you average it out that’s a 5. However, I have to advise you, if you want to try out this story please skip the 1st half and just go directly to the 2nd half.

BladeDust Online: A LitRPG Adventure (Book 1)