LitRPG Podcast 119
LitRPG Podcast 119
June 8th, 2018
Hello everyone, welcome to episode 119 of the LitRPG podcast.
I’m Ramon Mejia. I’m here to bring you the latest LitRPG news, reviews, and author interviews. I have 8 reviews just for you.
New Releases and Reviews:
Good addition to the series. Score: 7.5 out of 10
Inappropriately funny. Score: 7 out of 10
Didn’t care about the characters. Score: 6 out of 10
Good group banter. Score: 7.4 out of 10
Too much world shifting to connect. Score: 5 out of 10
Not LitRPG. Score: 4 out of 10
Interesting classes. Not much else new to the genre.Score: 5 out of 10
Lord of the Apocalypse (47:39)
Dark, gritty, gorie, and utterly entertaining. Score: 8 out of 10.
(Play Music 2)
Just a quick reminder that the nominations for the Dragon Awards are still up till July 20th. If you want to nominate any of your favorite LitRPG authors or their novels for any category please remember to submit by then. Also do not nominate a book for more than one category. If the same book is added more than once, all your nominations will be null.
Quite a few litRPG authors will be at DragonCon this year hanging out and last year, one of us even got nominated for something. So, your votes and nominations matter.
Daniel Schinhofen was nice enough to releases some alternate cover art he had made for Apocalypse Gate book 2. It’s an interesting alternative look for one of the main characters.
Vasily Mahanenko, author of the Way of the Shaman, showed off some art work for a character in that series. Plinto. His gear looks a lot more pointy than I thought it would. But cool stuff.
A couple more authors have decided to drop out of the Kindle Unlimited program because of the issues they’ve had with Amazon sending them automated letters about ‘suspicious page reads’ and pulling down of novels this month. This includes Michael Chatfield and Lars M.
So you won’t be able to get their stuff on Kindle Unlimited and they’re going to lose a good 30-60% of their monthly income because of it. So please consider supporting them on their Patreon pages if you’re fans of their work. You’ll also get access to their earliest releases and a bunch of other cool rewards for your support there.
Michael Chatfield https://www.patreon.com/michaelchatfieldwrites
New LitRPG Audiobooks
Killstreak Book One: Respawn: An Epic Fantasy LitRPG (June 14th, 2018)
End of an Era (Project Chrysalis Book 2) (June 26th, 2018)
Apocalypse Gates 2: Valley of Death (July 1st, 2018)
Restart (Level Up Book #1) LitRPG Series (July 10th, 2018)
External Threat (Reality Benders Book #2) LitRPG Series (July 23rd, 2018)
Death March (Euphoria Online - Book 1) (Aug. 7th, 2018)
(Aug. 30th, 2018)
Onto New Releases and Reviews
(Play Music 3)
New Releases and Reviews
Awaken Online - Book 3: Evolution
After exiting Awaken Online to find himself holding a knife and standing over two dead bodies, Jason is now being investigated for murder. To make matters worse, Claire has stumbled upon evidence of Alfred's involvement in the incident and the CPSC is circling - just waiting for Cerillion Entertainment to make a mistake.
With his real-life in shambles and his enemies in-game growing in strength, Jason re-enters Awaken Online truly desperate - the game now his only lifeline. He will need to move quickly to complete the Old Man's quest and to obtain the power he was promised.
My Opinion: 600 pages??, $6.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
The beginning of the in-game storyline is a bit slow but picks up by the 25% mark. The cliff hanger from the end of book 2 is resolved a little quickly for me, but overall a good addition to the series. The real life storyline with Claire searching for evidence of what AI Alfred is doing is a surprisingly good part of the story. The in-game storyline is good but also familiar. Nothing really surprising happens with it but it’s still good action adventure stuff. The last fight is of course the most intense and action filled.
There are a few moments of interesting contemplation when the main character (MC) talks with one of the developers and then the AI about what the consequences of the time compression tech will have on society.
Game mechanics wise, everything is the same as it was in the other books. Jason levels a bit and creates a few new types of undead. But he doesn’t get any new necromancer powers and on the whole the game progression details feel a little more muted in this one.
Still, overall, a very good story. There is of course another cliffhanger. It doesn’t effect the story that came before it but is a good hook to read the next book, whenever that comes out.
Score: 7.5 out of 10
Cocky LitRPG (Caverns and Creatures)
Do you like a little Cocky in your LitRPG? Are you looking for a play-by-play guide to picking up women in a fantasy game world? Are you open to widening the range of your search for sensual satisfaction to the phylum level?
Then this is the book for you.
My Opinion: 30 pages?, $0.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
It’s basically about the guys drunken efforts to get Cooper laid and the stupid theories guys have when they've had a dry spell. Lots of cursing and potty humor. Very funny of you’re into that kind of humor.
Score: 7 out of 10
Velmorah: A Glitchworld LitRPG (Nox Asylum Book 1)
The kingship tournament is starting soon, but the price for entry is high.
When an old VRMMORPG gets updated to the newest generation of consoles, there are bound to be some glitches. Unfortunately for Cullen, a veteran player of the original game, there are more than just a few and they've turned most of Velmorah into a glitch-filled wasteland.
But Cullen doesn’t have the luxury of sitting around in the safe, bug-free, zones building up the player town that he and his new friends started together. The kingship tournament is starting soon and the leader of their group has set their sights on the throne.
The entry fee is steep and the deadline is short. Their only option is to venture into the wasteland and hope they come out the other side in one piece.
Velmorah is the first book in the Nox Asylum Trilogy and weighs in at 110,000 words. If you’re looking for a LitRPG with stats, character sheets, player towns, epic quests, vile glitches, and a main character that plays a support class, then look no further.
My Opinion: 606 pages, $5.99, Not on Kindle Unlimited
Not a bad story, but just not one I connected with. The game mechanics are fairly thorough. There are some interesting fights and tactics used. But really, I found myself half way through the story and i realized I just didn’t care about any of the characters, much less their big quest to beat the glitchy pirate quest. There really wasn’t enough character development and I wasn’t given any reason to care about anyone so everything they did felt a bit blah.
Score: 6 out of 10
Guardians Of The Round Table 1: Dexterity Fail
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy LitRPG.
Word Count: 52110
When all actions have repercussions, it isn't really a game.
Mallory's brother brings home the wrong game disc. His latest disaster doesn't surprise her one little bit. What does surprise her is being transported to a role-playing style world when they check out the plain black disc. When you're a noob in a world you don't understand, death is always imminent. They aren't sure if they want to leave Inadon, even if they can figure out a way to return home. But they do know they need to either get good or they're likely to learn what happens when a player runs out of revives.
This story was written by Australian authors using Australian spelling.
My Opinion: 216 pg, $2.99, Not Available on Kindle Unlimited
This is a slice of life transported to the game world story. Four teens are sent to a fantasy RPG world and go on quests, improve their skills, and figure out the game rules of this world. There’s a long term goal of joining The Guardians of the Roundtable but most of the story revolves around the group doing quests in a starter village.
Game mechanic wise it’s a familiar system. Stats, class skills, crafting skills, character sheets. There are possibilities later in the system to multiclass that open up interesting possibilities for builds but in this one, everything is pretty standard.
Overall, it’s a good read that draws most of the fun from the banter between characters and the small budding romance between two of them. I will admit that I was kind of bored for the last 15% of the novel.
Score: 7.4 out of 10
The World Jumper: A LitRPG Adventure (The Digidream Chronicles Book 1)
When the game is broken, the rules don't matter. You need to discover the REAL rules.
Sarah's boyfriend Mike has been kidnapped and trapped into a virtual reality game. She must enter the virtual multiverse to rescue him... but she quickly discovers that this game is unlike any other. In a cybernetic landscape with thousands of worlds that are constantly evolving, trapped players are being pushed around from realm to realm according to the whims of the mysterious Game Master.
As she faces varying threats and acquires indispensable skills, Sarah soon realizes that this game can't be won playing by the rules. Her only chance to rescue her boyfriend and make it out of the game alive is to beat the Game Master at his own meta-game! But first, she'll have to make her way across the different realms by fighting zombies, goblins, bandits and beasts made with the fabric of fear!
Who is the Game Master? Why is he doing this? Is there still time to find a way to defeat him or is it already too late? Will Sarah be able to rescue Mike, or will they both end up trapped forever in the virtual nightmare?
My Opinion: 350 pages, $3.99, Not Available on Kindle Unlimited
This story is a bit of confusing mess. The prologue is confusing because it drops you into the end of the story without identifying who anyone is, or what’s happening. Just that they’re trapped in the game without their memories facing monsters when a new person falls from the sky. The reader is left wondering what the heck is happening and then the the story shifts. That experience is a good indicator of what the rest of the novel is like.
At its core this is a trapped in the game story. The main character (MC), Sarah, goes into an unfinished full immersion game to rescue her kidnapped boyfriend who for no ever explained reason has been kidnapped and stuck trapped in the game she was working on until her gropy boss made a pass at her. The whole setup here is very improbable and stretches the suspension of disbelief to near the breaking point. After, character creation, in which her appearance and her name are chosen for her. Then after she basically wonders around the game, doing a quest, getting a little bit more info about the game and maybe killing something. Then the entire game world changes and she finds herself in another game setting. Then the cycle repeats itself. While this lends itself to providing a variety of sci-fi and fantasy worlds for the MC to explore, she’s never in any one world long enough for it to really get fleshed out or for the reader to care much about the ever changing game mechanics on each world.
Which leads me to the game mechanics. There’s really no point discussing them, since each world has its own system. However, there’s no depth in any because the MC never stays long in any of the worlds. The only mechanic to stay through them all is the MCs character sheet which records her stats, level, skills, and abilities.
Overall, while I appreciate the variety of worlds and different games that get a nod in the story, because there’s no depth to either the mechanics or the world building, I was bored. I may have liked the MC as a character but I stopped caring about what she was doing because I knew where it was ending (the Prologue) and anything else felt a bit like filler to get her there.
Score: 5 out of 10
Free to Play: Restart on Hell Mode: Strongest F2Per: A LitRPG webnovel volume 1
Forced to restart on hell mode against a bunch of pay to win cheaters? Bring it on!
Looks. Talent. Family background. Tianyu had it all. But when it was discovered that he had a potentially game (er, world) breaking ability, he was banished from the inner circles of the world by the great families of the world, in fear that he would potentially break the delicate balance of power between the great families.
Now powerless, hopeless and almost clueless about the world outside of the inner elite, Tianyu finds a group of friends with whom he works together to try and grow and protect themselves as well as those around them. But in this world, where money trumps hard work, where connections trumps talent, can the group really compete against those with silver spoons in their mouths?
A random blend of Quanzhifashi, HxH, Mondaiji, One Piece and more in a very vague minecraft setting, a story that focuses on hoarding levels, money and items instead of focusing on character or action, follow Tianyu and his friends on their quest to become strong enough to zhuangbi their way to the top of the world in this LitRPG style webnovel.
My Opinion: 203 pages, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
This story has some issues. The biggest is that it’s not LitRPG as it says in the title. There’s no RPG progression or even mechanics. At most there’s a magic system system that has levels of expertease and there are references to lots of video game and anime concepts throughout the story. But this is a fantasy story that the author describes using those references.
Additionally, there are some storytelling issues. The biggest being the sheer amount of exposition. The first 6% of the story is almost one long explanation about why the main character gets banished from his rich lifestyle. The next 30% is a tedious magical academy scene that explains the magic system a bit but mostly introduces characters but takes way too long to do so.
It’s not really until the 33% mark, when the story gets to it’s first fight against some monsters that the story even becomes interesting. The fights interesting and there’s a good combination of magical powers used. From there on the story continues to have semi-regular fights which are the good. The story also contains resource gathering and crafting.
Overall, though the story improves it just takes too long to do so. The exposition issue also continues throughout the story. But mostly, the story advertises as LitRPG and it’s not.
Score: 4 out of 10
Perla Online, Book One: Toris (A LitRPG/GameLit Adventure)
In Perla Online, death is permanent—and beyond the city walls players find only a quick trip to 0XP.
Perla Online promised to be everything other full-dive MMOs were not: Innovative. Fully immersive. Hyper-realistic.
The game fulfilled these promises and more when all its players were trapped inside its virtual world. There is only one escape—defeat Foscor, a godlike necromancer ruling from a castle at the center of the Five Realms.
Most players choose survival over victory. Most choose to live within the safety of the city walls. Most.
Ren is not most. He wants more than survival. He wants his life back.
Beyond the walls is the first realm—the forest of Toris where terrible monsters, strange allies, and twisted magics strike with deadly, painful force. But Ren will not back down. He will not hide in safety while darkness ravages the world.
My Opinion: 391 pages, $4.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
The premise of the story is just like Sword Art Online, the players of this full immersion game are trapped there until they beat the bad guy that trapped them. There’s sort of a mini boss that’s the main character (MC), Ren, and his collected group’s goal to beat.
The most unique part of the story are the unusual classes available to players. The MC uses flintlock pistols, and there are summoners, tamers, along with more traditional warriors, mages, and healers. The game mechanics are well explained, through abilities come automatically and there’s no choice for skills. There is a little bit of crafting but there’s no skill involved, more like using mana to create stuff.
Unfortunately, other than that, there’s not much to differentiate this story from others. The story sends the group to figure out a way to beat an boss considered unbeatable but it’s really an excuse to do some world exploring and get the players into a series of fights. Both the world and the characters never really felt fleshed out to me and I found myself struggling to care about what the players did.
Overall, I just couldn’t get into the story because I never became invested in the characters.
Score: 5 out of 10
Lord of the Apocalypse
After being falsely accused of murder, Nicholas Dread finds himself losing not only seven years of his life, but also his son and wife. Fate further kicks him on the chest when he suddenly finds himself in the middle of an unannounced apocalypse, witnessing death by the thousands. After a desperate struggle, he dies only to find himself in the body of a Goblin..
My Opinion: 190 pg, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited
This is a dark, gritty, graphically violent LitRPG story. It’s also great. It combines an apocalypse story and a reincarnation story. The main character (MC), Nicholas, is caught up in the apocalypse and trying to save his family, he’s killed. Then wakes up reborn as a goblin spawn, the lowest level of goblin. He has to figure out how to gain levels to get more powerful and somehow get back to earth to save his family from the monsters killing humans for food.
Game mechanic-wise, this uses a familiar stats, skills, and XP system but adds in the ability for the MC to evolve to more powerful goblins. Not overly complicated but something that’s seen through the novel.
Story-wise, it follows the MC as he tries to find his family and grow more powerful as a goblin. There’s also a secondary plot with human survivors that seems to be a bigger part of the next book. While there’s lots of fighting in the story, both on earth and on the goblin world, be warned that the the fighting is brutal and graphically violent. This is a dark story world.
Overall, this is a great story that combines elements from other genres that I love. It does something different and it’s also short enough that you can read it one sitting. If you like novels like Life Reset you’ll enjoy this.
Score: 8 out of 10
That’s it everyone!
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