Awoken on the cold, hard dirt in a near-pitch-black underground cavern, Cassandra Flynn must face the real possibility that she is a digital representation - a player, as it were - in an unknown game.
How did she get here? Where was her 'real' body? Did she even have a real body?
Facing a myriad of unanswered questions, she must learn about her new world and forge a life for herself in this timeless, endless dungeon.
With only a wand, a pickaxe and a certain spunky pet raptor by her side (hiss!) will Cass uncover the secrets of the game? Or stumble to her death in the inky blackness of the unknown?
Who knows what lies on the other side? If anything...
My Opinion: 90 pages, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
A slice of life/trapped in a game story, with some minecraft elements used to shape the landscape, build, and craft.
Story wise, it’s pretty slice of life. The MC wakes up in the game with no memory of how she gets there and has to learn how the endless dungeon works. She explores, follows quest prompts, kills mobs, and crafts. There is this minor cyberpunk element with permadeath, trapped players, and corrupted code that I didn’t like but it’s not a big part of the story. Also, very sudden ending.
The RPG game mechanics are automated with the main character (MC) getting new spells, abilities, and crafting recipes as she levels. I would have liked to have seen a little more choice in that regard, but it’s not bad. The health and mana progression is more reminiscent of tabletop games with a d6 roll used to determine increases as the MC levels, which I liked. I also liked the minecraft elements for shaping the land and crafting, it was something I don’t see in LitRPG often. Though I think it’s underutilized in the story.
A few story/game mechanics that dropped my enjoyment. There’s a pet summoning/raising mechanic in the story and while the pet is cute, it’s also honestly smarter than the MC. Instead of the MC figuring something out the author uses the pet to explain something to her. It makes some gains feel cheaper since they're handed to the MC. Also the pet she summons is a higher level than her, which just feels off without some other mechanic explaining why. Like some meta magic feat or sacrifice or taming feature.
The magic system is also a little more 'wand wavy' than I liked. The MC can simply imagine or wish for a new spell and have it show up in her spellbook. There are also a couple places where the MC channels power from the earth to save herself instead of using her mana, effectively ignoring the game mechanics established. These are minor things which exist because there’s permadeath in the story for some unneeded reason and they just dropped my enjoyment of the story a little.
Overall, there are some neat elements to the story and it’s a decent read if you don’t mind some thick plot armor for the MC. I minded though.
Score: 6 out of 10