Grum: Barbarian Barista: A litRPG Short Story


Grum! The Defiler of Corpses.

Grum! The Butcher of Balor.

Grum! The God Stomper.

Grum! …Minimum-wage Barista?

The vortex. The feeling of being ripped apart. When he’d awoken after the fight with Albatross, he was in this realm. A realm filled with tall buildings and small people, with no way to get home—and nothing to kill to make himself feel better about it.

What he needed… was a quest. Purpose. And then he saw it, taped to the window of Tarbean Café, home of the darkest, strongest, coffee on the planet:


In his realm, he’d looted every dungeon, butchered every end-game boss, ravaged the entire map in a crashing wave of blood and glory.

And he planned to do the same thing here.

But Grum soon learns murder isn't part of a cold brew and he can't battle his way to a bigger tip. If he is to become The Legend of Latte, his new adventuring party, Gabe and Candice, must teach this old barbarian to embrace patience, finesse, and cooperation.

And he must accept that some quests cannot be won through the sheer enjoyment of face-smashing and intimidation.

…Or can they?


My Opinion: 48 pages, $0.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

A reverse transported to an RPG world. Grum, a level 99 Barbarian with legendary gear,  is transported to our world after a nasty battle with an evil mage. He thinks a help wanted sign outside a coffee shop is a quest marker and ends up applying for a job as a barista. Can Grum use his RPG based view to master the intricacies of the job or will he forever remain a level 1 barista?


This is a funny satirical story that’s going to be hard to describe without spoiling some of the jokes or the plot of the short story.

The humor relies on the stranger in a strange land type of humor (think Mork and Mindy or Perfect Strangers), where everything is filtered through the cultural perspective of the foreigner. In this case, someone from an RPG world who sees everything in terms of levels, skills, dialogue trees, and thinks of his fellow employees as NPCs. There are lots of gamer jokes that assume you’ve played an MMO or RPG tabletop game.

If you’ve ever seen the animated live-action TV series Son of Zorn, you’ll recognize the kind of humor in the novel. This kind of humor can get old fast. But when done with finesse it’s great. The novel is just long enough that it’s interesting without getting repetitive.

I had a great time reading it and laughed throughout.

Score: 8 out of 10

Grum: Barbarian Barista: A litRPG Short Story