LitRPG Podcast 187 - DragonCon 2019


LitRPG Podcast 187 - DragonCon 2019

Aug. 29th, 2019

Hello everyone, welcome to episode 187 of the LitRPG podcast.

I’m Ramon Mejia. I’m here to bring you the latest LitRPG news, reviews, and author interviews.  I have 4 new reviews just for you.

New Releases and Reviews:

A Check for a Billion (Galactogon Book #3): LitRPG Series (Aug. 30th, 2019) (17:13)

A good conclusion to the series

Score: 7.2 out of 10 

Zones of Alacria: The Dragon Gate: Epic GameLit / LitRPG (The Experimental Alchemist Book 1) (Aug. 31st, 2019)  (20:47)

Plot felt forced, but the stuff between was fun

Score: 7.1 out of 10 

Clear and Present Ranger (Caverns and Creatures) (30:53)

Another fun and inappropriate short story

Score: 7.4 out of 10 

The Itemancer: Book 1 (33:01)

Starts out unique with an item only leveling system

Score: 7.1 out of 10

(Play Music 2)

LitRPG News

Hello all! It's been almost a month since book 4 of The Idle System was released, that went by quick.

I'm posting this to let everyone know that from today (literally just started) until the 30th August, the first book is absolutely free! 

Someone wrote a song inspire by a LitRPG novel, The Fallen Bard. It’s kind of a fun milestone when other creative industries are inspired by ours. 

The LitRPG Podcast will be doing some Facebook Live streams while at DragonCon or just hanging out with people. So, keep an eye out for those on the LitRPG Podcast Facebook page. But here is a list of locations, panels, and booths that we put together for LitRPG authors at DragonCon. You can also find most of the info on panels on the DragonCon App.

Dave Wilmarth


Private room at the Commerce Club on Friday 30th from 3pm-6pm. A block south of the con at 191 Peachtree, 49th floor

He will be signing books, but will not be selling any. So bring your own books.

-I know that there will likely be several other LitRPG authors hanging out there too, including myself. So if you want me to sign a book you bring, that’ll be the place.

Apollos Thorne

(Unknown at this time)

He’s attending the con as a speaker this year and is supposed to be on some panels, but he hasn’t had a schedule handed to him as of this recording. We’ll update you when we know more but hopefully the DragonCon App will update too.

Jeffrey Falcon Logue

Booth: 1st Floor?? He didn't have a specific booth number at the time of recording but said he’d be with Tairen’s Lair.

Michael Chatfield

Visions of the Future: YA Sci-Fi Worldbuilding

Time: Fri 01:00 pm Location: A707 - Marriott (Length: 1 Hour)

Fantasy Gather

Time: Fri 08:00 pm Location: Hyatt Hanover C-E (Length: 4 hours)

The World & the Game: Where the Games We Play Meet the Books We Read 

Time: Sat 05:30 pm Location: Embassy EF - Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

Fighting in Space: Planning a Space Battle

Time: Sat 07:00 pm Location: Embassy AB - Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

Luke Chmilenko 

Heists, Road Trips, & Horror

Time: Sun 01:00 pm Location: Hyatt Embassy EF (Length: 1 Hour)

Novel Gaming: Books Based on Games

Time: Mon 11: 30 am Location: Hyatt Embassy AB (Length: 1 Hour)

Dakota Krout

Booth: Americas Mart Building 2  - 2nd Floor booth 2826-2727 

-There will be a book signing schedule there for the authors of Mountaindale Press including: Jay Boyce, Christopher Johns, David Petrie, Xander Boyce, Andrew Louws and Dakota Krout

Giving the Book a Voice: Talking about Audiobooks

Time: Sat 02:30 pm  Location: Hyatt Embassy EF

Sanderson’s Laws of Magic

Time: Sat 10:00 pm Location: Marriott L401-L403

James A. Hunter

Booth: Americas Mart Building 2  - 2nd Floor booth 2820-2822 

Who, or What, Did It: Solving Crime in Urban Fantasy

Fri 01:00 pm Location: Westin Chastain 1-2

Finding the Groove: Music in UF

Fri 02:30 pm Location: Westin Chastain 1-2

Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite

Fri 05:30 pm Location: Marriott M302-M303

Fantasy Gather

Time: Fri 08:00 pm Location: Hyatt Hanover C-E (Length: 4 hours)

Dead Beat: Dark Fantasy Detectives

Sun 07:00 pm Location: Westin Chastain I-J

All the Subs

Mon 01:00 pm Location: Hyatt Embassy EF

Aleron Kong

Booth: Americas Mart Building 2  - 2nd Floor booth 2824

The business of doing business

Fri 11:30 AM Location: Hyatt Inman (1 hour)

The Heroes of High Fantasy

Fri 01:00 PM Location: Hyatt Regency VI-VII 

Fantasy Gather

Time: Fri 08:00 pm Location: Hyatt Hanover C-E (Length: 4 hours)

Writing for Games & Steam Panel

Sat 02:30 pm Location: Hyatt Inman

Creators Panel: How to manage it all?

Sat 07:00 pm Location: Hyatt Inman

LitRPG Gala

Sidebar Sunday 12-2 pm

Sanderson’s Laws of Magic

Time: Sat 10:00 pm Location: Marriott L401-L403 (1 hour)

Writing in the TransMedia Age

Mon 11:30 am Location: Hyatt Inman (1 Hour)

The Magical Realm: Fantasy

Mon 01:00 pm  Location: Marriott A707 (1 Hour)

Out Now!

Dungeon of the Gods: A LitRPG Journey (Legends Online Book 2) 

Bridge Quest: A GameLit Adventure Series (BRIDGE QUEST Book 1) 

The Snake Report II 

New LitRPG Audiobooks

Beginner's Luck - Character Development, Book 1 

Troll Nation: The Rogue Dungeon Book 3 

Upcoming LitRPG:

Endless Fantasy Online: The Phoenix Kingdom (Aug. 31st, 2019) 

Ethria: The Pioneer, An Epic LitRPG Adventure

(Aug. 31st, 2019)

Darkness Named (dARkness: Online Book 1) (Aug. 31st, 2019) 

The Forest's Silence: A LitRPG Fantasy (Adventures on Brad Book 6) (Sept. 1st, 2019) 

A Game of Villains (World of Karik Book #1) Dystopian LitRPG Series (Sept. 2nd, 2019) 

Dragon Heart: Iron Will. LitRPG wuxia series: Book 2 (Sept. 5th, 2019)

**Error with the previous pre-order and it got canceled. It was supposed to be available now, but is now scheduled for Sept. 5th** 

Cliffs of Eldimar: A GameLit/LitRPG Adventure (Kazaran Online: Cerulean Server Book 2) (Sept. 6th, 2019) 

Gamer For Love (Alpha World Book 8) (Sept. 8th, 2019)

Blood of Fate (World 99 Book #1): LitRPG Wuxia Series (Sept. 9th, 2019) 

Gloominess +2: Congregation. A LitRPG Adventure: Book 2 (Sept. 10th, 2019) 

Bibliomancer: A Completionist Chronicles Series (Wolfman Warlock Book 1) (Sept. 17th, 2019) 

*Co-Author from Dakota Krout and James Hunter*

Skulls of Atlantis: A LitRPG and GameLit Pirate Adventure (Sept. 19th, 2019) 

Shadow Sun Rebellion (Shadow Sun series - Book 3) (Sept. 30th, 2019)

First Song 2 (Sept 2019)

Fairyed: A LitRPG Adventure (Monsters, Maces and Magic Book 4) (Oct. 1st, 2019) 

Quest for Power: A LitRPG Saga (Hero Online Book 2) (Oct. 3rd, 2019) 

Varnoth: The Black Blade: Book Two (A LitRPG Story) (Oct. 3rd, 2019) 

Dungeon Dive: A LitRPG short story (Tales from the Gods' Game Book 1) (Oct. 16th, 2019) 

Second Story Man: A GameLit/LitRPG Adventure (The Bad Guys Book 2) (Oct. 17th, 2019) 

Universe ICS: Keymaster. LitRPG Series. Book 2 (Oct. 17th, 2019) 

Deadman's Retinue (An NPC's Path Book #3): LitRPG Series

(Oct. 21st, 2019) 

A Dark Path: Grimdark LitRPG (Forsaken Talents Book 1) (Nov. 1st, 2019) 

The Way of Deception (World of Karik, Book #2, Part 1): LitRPG Series (Nov. 4th, 201) 

Avatar of Light (Interworld Network Book #2): LitRPG Series

(Nov. 7th, 2019) 

The Last Time Loop, Book #1: LitRPG Series (Nov. 11th, 2019) 

Onto New Releases and Reviews

(Play Music 3)

New Releases and Reviews

(Picture 1)

A Check for a Billion (Galactogon Book #3): LitRPG Series

A check for a billion credits. The prize seemed lost forever and here it glittered again with all its colors, drawing the couple like a magnet. The pirates, the Uldans, the Zatrathi—none of it mattered now. The final goal was so close. All they had to do was reach out and grasp it.

Alas, fortune refuses to land in Surgeon’s hand just like that, without a fight. Fortune only comes to those who can prove themselves. Will Alexis and Eunice find their inner strength and go to the end—or will the obstacles in their way force them to give up their search? After all, the most important thing is to find the planet with the prize. And yet faced with an entire galaxy, where do they even start?

My Opinion: 493 pages, $6.99, Not Available on Kindle Unlimited

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

The final novel in the series according to the author. There are some good resolutions to the big conflicts in the series, though the game mechanics are minimized greatly. There are good space fights, tense betrayals, and surprising story twists as the main character (MC) and his pregnant wife search for their promised prize and fight not only alien empires but the pirates that they are supposed to be aligned with. Good stuff all around and while some aspects are forced it’s a nice conclusion to the series. 

Score: 7.2 out of 10

A Check for a Billion (Galactogon Book #3): LitRPG Series (Aug. 30th, 2019) 

Zones of Alacria: The Dragon Gate: Epic GameLit / LitRPG (The Experimental Alchemist Book 1)

In 6 days, my real body dies. Unless I solve the riddle to transition into a virtual reality, it’s game over.

Orianna is thrown into a deadly virtual world of magic and monsters. The power hungry leader of the Dragon Hunters guild offers her a choice – sacrifice an innocent to save herself, or risk everything and become the first person ever to solve the riddle.

With clues pointing to the Dragon Gate and her time disappearing fast, how can she find something that’s supposed to be a myth? If she does succeed, it’ll undermine the foundation of the biggest guild in the game.

Are you ready to play for your life?

Zones of Alacria: The Dragon Gate is the first book in the Experimental Alchemist epic fantasy LitRPG series, which contains game mechanics, crafting, tons of Easter Eggs and pets (no harems or swearing). If you enjoy unique magic, along with page turning action and adventure, then you’ll love this mind-bending quest.

My Opinion: 628 pages, $3.99, Available On Kindle Unlimited

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

The author has written a few non fiction how to write books, but this is her first LitRPG publication. I’ll be honest, I was worried that this novel was going to be another write to market story by a non-gamer trying to make a buck. While the plot in the novel is severely forced, the actual game stuff is nicely done and you can tell there’s a gamer writing it. 

The story puts the main character (MC) from a dystopian Hunger games inspired world into a VR game where she must solve a riddle in six days or die. Even if she does solve the riddle, her body dies and she’s just uploaded into the game. Once there in the game world, the MC must contend with not only figuring out the riddle she is given, but a slew of problems that include an evil guild, mysteriously corrupted animals, and mistreated NPCs.

This novel has a plot that advances fairly regularly at the expected turning points (25%, 33%, 50%, 66%, 75%, 90%) and between those points the story is slice of life filler with adventures, small quests, crafting, and XP grinding. The plot portion of the story is the part I like the least because not only is it fairly predictable, it often feels forced. From the hunger games in VR setup, to the main character (MC) being given or stumbling into everything to solve plot conflicts, to the many ways the plot ignores the game mechanics to force the story in a particular direction, to the cliffhanger ending, it was often rather frustrating as indicated by the many places in the notes while reading saying: ‘wt??’ and  ‘that doesn’t match the game stuff’. 

However, it’s the ‘filler’ between the forced plot that saved the story for me. It's in these sections that exist to give the MC something to do between plot points that the author just has fun with her characters. The MC goes on adventures, dungeon quests, talks to NPCs, or crafts. While it’s a bit slice of life and most of what happens here doesn’t affect the plot, with the exception of a few plot items, these sections not only add action to the story, but often develop game mechanics, flesh out characters, or just adds some nice world building. Very little in these sections feels forced, instead the adventuring and crafting develop naturally and you can tell the author was having fun playing around with different systems and letting them develop. Yes, there are still places where an item or power is forced into existence because it’ll be used for the plot later, but those are few.

On the game mechanic side, things are mostly good. The system is well thought out and when the described RPG system is followed, mostly in the slice of life parts, you can tell that the author has lots of gaming experience. You’ll see regular character sheets, a magic system, an alchemy and crafting system, pet raising, skill and item descriptions, and lots of RPG progression. No classes though, more of a free form skill system. It’s only when the story returns to the ‘plot’ sections that the game mechanics get ignored and you see things happen that don’t make sense according to the described systems or are ‘fantasy flexible’ and feel like they belong in a fantasy story. 

Overall, I enjoyed the novel in spite of the forced plot. I’ll admit, I felt frustrated every time the story returned to the ‘evil guild’ stuff or ‘six days to solve a riddle’ thing. But I was entertained enough by the sections between to still enjoy myself, barely. I don’t think that I’d read a 2nd book in the series though.

Score: 7.1 out of 10

Zones of Alacria: The Dragon Gate: Epic GameLit / LitRPG (The Experimental Alchemist Book 1) (Aug. 31st, 2019) 

Clear and Present Ranger (Caverns and Creatures)

What do you do when you encounter a maniac in the woods who poses a danger to himself, others, and the world around him?

If you're Tim, you fuck off to the pub and get shitfaced. Unfortunately, the rest of the Caverns & Creatures gang are going to make him stick around until they solve a seemingly unsolvable problem.

My Opinion: 40 pages, $2.99, Available On Kindle Unlimited

Another funny and highly inappropriate adventure with the C&C crew. This time focuses on how to help a self hating ranger with issues with animals. It definitely took a turn I didn’t expect, but was funny nonetheless. 

Score: 7.4 out of 10

Clear and Present Ranger (Caverns and Creatures) 

The Itemancer: Book 1

Rowan Loran is an apprentice Itemancer, able to alter the properties of objects with a touch, using a special type of energy called XP. His master works him hard, and he is content with his lot. Everything changes when a marauding dragon attacks his sleepy hometown, and he kills it. Suddenly he is sitting on an unbelievable pool of XP. Enough to make him a god.

My Opinion: 93 pages, $3.00, Available On Kindle Unlimited

A short story that starts off rather well with a unique RPG progression sysem based on items and gear getting XP and upgrading rather than people. It’s inspired by the Disaea video game series’ game mechanics, which alone was enough to get me to read the story.

The main character (MC) kills a dragon almost by accident but gets so much XP for his itemancer amulet and sword that he gains the ability to create his own upgrades for items. He uses this to turn his sword, amulet, and knife into pretty ladies and the four of them go on adventures. The story doesn’t take itself too seriously and while there are minor harem elements, there is no romance much less sex in the story. It’s mostly just slice of life adventuring and the severely overpowered group gets into trouble and jokes around. 

Overall, it’s a nice short read that tried to use a different kind of progression system. Though it eventually transitions into something more familiar I enjoyed the read just for the attempt. 

Score: 7.1 out of 10

The Itemancer: Book 1

That’s it everyone!

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Thanks for hanging out with me today. Until we can hangout again, remember to go read some LitRPG!  

(Music 4)

Music Credits

"Blip Stream" "Mighty Like Us" "Big Shift" "Vivacity"

Kevin MacLeod (

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