HOPE Engine


HOPE Engine

A world on the brink of war, absent parents, and no friends sounds like a disaster unless all you ever wanted was to live inside your virtual reality pod.

Meet Severo, a fresh-eyed graduate, as he joins the ranks of new players in the HOPE engine, but quickly finds out that everything isn’t as advertised. An unnatural enemy is rising, more glitch than feature, that not even the highest level players can stop. A noob like Severo doesn’t stand a chance! Right? But with his starter village in the enemy’s warpath, he better figure something out! Before that, he needs to learn that NPCs are sentient, friends are needed, and food in fantasy games sucks! Oh yeah, and pick a class!

As if all that wasn’t enough to worry about, outside of the VR pod, real life is starting to have its own technical difficulties...

My Opinion: 492 pages, $3.49, Available on Kindle Unlimited

Full disclosure: I received an advanced copy for review, I purchased a copy when it became available.

Originally a serial story on Royal Road, it's been collected and updated as an Amazon novel. As a serial story, it is going to feel kind of slice of life in that you follow the main character (MC) as he discovers the fantasy game world, the various game mechanics, and how see how he chooses to play and interact with the game, craft, plays scenarios, and levels. The story feels like the MC is in a game where players can choose different scenarios to play, or they can kingdom build. There’s lots of game theory with the MC considering his class options. Loads of detail on game mechanics too.

Overall, the story was entertaining for me. One of the underrated aspects of the story is the snarky sense of humor, which I liked. However, I like slice of life and am ok with how the story bounces around between, adventuring, RTS town building, chosen one stuff, and cyberpunk digital plague stuff.  

Score: 7.3 out of 10

HOPE Engine