LitRPG Podcast 162 - The Crafting of Chess, Supermage, The Black Turtle , Changing World bk 2, Dungeon World


LitRPG Podcast 162 - The Crafting of Chess, Supermage, The Black Turtle , Changing World bk 2, Dungeon World

March 15th, 2019

I’m Ramon Mejia. I’m here to bring you the latest LitRPG news, reviews, and author interviews.  I have 5 new reviews just for you.

New Releases and Reviews:

The Crafting of Chess: A LitRPG adventure

A good crafting - adventure LitRPG story

Score: 7.5 out of 10

Supermage (Rise to Omniscience Book 1)

Couldn’t help compare it to Dante’s Immortality, which is just so much better.

Score: 5 out of 10

The Black Turtle (The Artar Chronicles Book 2)

A good continuation of the series

Score:7.4 out of 10

Changing World: The Fast Flow

Hard to reconnect to the story and characters

Score: 6 out of 10

Dungeon World: A Dungeon Core Experience

Interesting premise of a dungeon-core adventurer, execution misses for me.

Score: 6 out of 10

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LitRPG News

Matt Dinniman, author of the Dominion of Blades series, will be at Emerald City Comic Con this weekend March 14-17 at booth HG307. He’s an artist as well as an author and I believe the art will be the main focus of the booth. But he says he’ll have some print books for fans to buy and is more than happy to sign copies they may have. So, go stop on by say hello to Matt and buy some of his amazing art.

Jeffrey Falcon Logue, author of the Slime Dungeon Chronicles, is continuing to work on his side scroller game set in the same universe. This week he released some of the art work he’s commisioned for the design of the sprites and characters. It looks super cool. You can see what some of the monsters and bosses will look like. I’m just telling you cause I liked seeing it and it’s super fun to see the work on a LitRPG inspired game.

The latest audiobook from the War Aeternus series is out, and Soundbooth Theater has made a really great trailer for it. It not only captures the neat bits about that story but kind of for the series on whole.

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Just wanted to give a bit shoutout to Dave Willmarth on the success of his new series, Shadow Sun Survival. It broke through past into the top 200 space and is currently sitting at #159 on all of Amazon and is #1 in several sub categories. Congratulation man, we’re all really proud that you’re doing well. Go check out the novel if you haven’t already.

We hit 1,000 subscribers on YouTube and to celebrate we’re giving away 10 audiobook codes for Audible. Everyone who has subscribed to the channel or follows us on Facebook is already entered and here are the winners:  Jakob Tanner, Chris Memmott, Logan122881, Timothy Olsen, Drew Cordell, JDbugman, Mathew Montevideo, Steven Michael Berry, Miles Trombley.

I’ve sent off messages to everyone so check your emails and facebook messages.

Additionally, i’ll have hidden one extra Audible code somewhere in the podcast for the 1st viewer to claim it. Thank you everyone that has helped support the podcast to grow.

Out Now!

Vindication (The Alchemic Weaponeer - Book 1)

The Game of Gods: The Beginning

Istoria Online: Square One: A LitRPG Adventure

Respawn: 18 and Up (Respawn LitRPG series Book 3)

The Mayor of Noobtown: A LitRPG Adventure

City of Champions Online: Complete

-Compilation of episodes 1-5 of the series

-Super Hero LitRPG

The Idle System (A LitRPG series Book 3): The Birth

Comet Rider: A Scifi Lit-RPG Series

Acrion: Cascade

Gamer Guy III-Uploaded: A LitRPG lite novel (Gamer Guy Series Book 3)

New LitRPG Audiobooks

Harbinger of Ash: War Aeternus, Book 4

Bunker Core: Core Control, Book 1

The Starry Skies of Darkaan: Heroic Fantasy (Realm of Arkon, Book 6)

The Path: Just Cause Universe, Book 14

Dan the Adventurer - Gold Girls and Glory, Book 2

Note: narrated by the amazing Andrea Parsneau (Par-Snow)

Oblivion's Promise - Endless Online: A LitRPG Adventure, Book 2

Upcoming LitRPG:

Gun Blade (Crystal Shards Online Book 4)  (March 17h, 2019)

Absolute Zero (Adam Online Book #1) LitRPG Series (March 18th, 2019)

Max Lagno is the co-author for Level Up: Knockout

Protectors: Evolution Online V (A LitRPG) (March 19th, 2019)

The Fourth Realm (The Ten Realms Book 4) (March 22nd, 2109)

The Final Trial (Level Up Book #3) LitRPG Series (March 25th, 2019)

Soulcatcher. LitRPG series "Universe ICS": Book I

(March 25th, 2019)

Dark World [Transformation. Book II] (March 27th, 2019)

Lost Portals: Czarzakian Multiverse Online (LitRPG Omniverse 1) (Czarzakian Multiverse Online: LitRPG Omnverse) (March 27th, 2019)

Viridian Gate Online: Dead Man’s Tide: A litRPG Adventure (The Illusionist Book 2) (March 28th, 2019)

Shyft - Book 1 - Defender of Gallowind: (A LitRPG Adventure) (March 29th, 2019)

Into The Game: Dungeon Crawl Quest: A LitRPG Adventure (Wizard Warrior Quest) (April 1st, 2019)

Djinn Tamer: Rivals: A Monster Battling GameLit Adventure (Djinn Tamer - Bronze League Book 2) (April 5th, 2019)

Edge of the Abyss (Respawn Trials Book #1) LitRPG Series (April 10th, 2019)

Dukes and Ladders: A LitRPG/Gamelit Adventure (The Good Guys Book 5) (April 11th, 2019)

Dragon Heart: Stone Will. LitRPG wuxia series: Book 1

(April 18th, 2019)

Class-A Threat (Disgardium Book #1) LitRPG Series (April 22nd, 2019)

In Search of the Uldans (Galactogon: Book #2) LitRPG Series

(April 25th, 2019)

Realm of Noria [LitRPG series. Book 2. The Life] (June 1st, 2019)

Onto New Releases and Reviews

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New Releases and Reviews

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The Crafting of Chess: A LitRPG adventure

Nate wants more to life than moving from town to town, hustling chess with his con-man grandfather or wagering pick-up games online. A new immersive game opens up the chance to bring in a steady paycheck. Maybe enough to convince his grandfather to stay straight. Little does he know how his actions will change his life.

A GameLit coming of age story.

My Opinion: 291 pages, $3.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

The story will absolutely appeal to LitRPG readers that like crafting. Like, that’s what most of the story revolves around. There is little to no combat in the story but there is still adventure/conflict as the main character (MC) is put in some interesting positions. He has to navigate politics and factions with NPCs. He has to fend off and manage greedy players that will betray him for a chance at his enchanted gear. NPCs and Players alike want to use him for their own purposes, when all he wants to do is improve his crafting and enchanting skills so that he can make a living selling it at auction.

Overall, a gem of a crafting story. It has great details about crafting and enchantment abilities without it being too realistic. The story still has familiar game mechanics like stats, levels, XP, quest and item notifications. I will note that the crafting storyline minimizes near the last 20% of the novel as the focus shifts to completing the ‘plot’ with the Kingmaker contest and I was just less interested in that aspect.

Score: 7.5 out of 10

The Crafting of Chess: A LitRPG adventure

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Supermage (Rise to Omniscience Book 1)

Morgan's life is not easy. Growing up on the streets of City Four, he is constantly shunned by the other citizens. Morgan doesn't mind being ignored. What he does mind, though, are the constant beatings from the city guards due to his friendship with Sarah, the city lord's only daughter. Lord Simon wants him dead, but the laws of the kingdom are on Morgan’s side and even the guards won't kill him, just for being seen near his manor.

Morgan’s time is running out, though. Lord Simon has deep pockets and his last visit to the manor may just have put him over the edge. Worse, he is nearing his sixteenth birthday, and has yet to awaken any abilities. In a world where might makes right, he has never been one of the mighty. What will he do when faced with a life altering decision and just how will his decision impact those around him?

Warning: This book contains profanity, gore and content that may not be suitable for children. This book also contains GameLit elements such as stat sheets, and a form of leveling and experience gain.

My Opinion: 298 pages, $3.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

The novel has been doing well on Amazon hitting sub 200s and I want to congratulate the author on doing well. But honestly, the story didn’t work for me. I feel like I’ve read the premise before and it was done better.

The novel starts a bit like Dante’s Immortality with the main character (MC) worried about his powers showing before his age limit hits. Magically, just when he needs them, they finally show, but he has to hide them and run because he’s just potentially too powerful.

Only in this novel, the MC gets mage powers and super powers and he has to train, kill monsters to advance, and escape from the bad men hunting him. Oh, he also has a lord’s daughter with him for no really ever explained reason. There’s also a bit of magical academy story and a tournament. But honestly, that’s kind of it. There’s not really a complex story here.

Game mechanic wise, this is a pretty sparse and simplified system. Yes, there are ranks, increases in power based on killing, and the powers/magic increase in power as ranks increase. But honestly, most of the numbers in the character sheet felt like they had little real impact on the story. Combat is exaggerated with the MC often killing opponents higher in rank in just a couple of hits. There’s no damage notification or health loss % to show any relationship between character sheet numbers and the rest of the story. Most of the numbers feel like they’re there to tick a box or to show there is some growth as the MCs ranks increase.

Overall, this story just didn’t work for me. There’s little character depth, I never really got a reason to like the MC, there’s only a little world building, and the game mechanics aren’t interesting. The story feels more like a super powered novel set in a fantasy world. Which isn’t bad, it just didn’t work for me. I’d honestly recommend you read Dante’s Immortality, it’s a much better LitRPG novel.

Score: 5 out of 10

Supermage (Rise to Omniscience Book 1)

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The Black Turtle (The Artar Chronicles Book 2)

The brand new LitRPG adventure continues! An instant hit with all genre lovers, adventurers, gamers, and fans of The Land and Awaken Online!

Torn apart by life, both virtual and real, Mongoose has to gain the trust and support of his teammates in The Steel Hounds by completing a perilous quest — and at the same time, become the very first to master the element of Water in Artar while securing a source of real-life income.

But the road he has chosen turns out to be wild and untraveled, his guildmates are assassinated, his real-life abilities are weakened, and he becomes completely broke…

Trying to find a balance between his own ambitions, The Steel Hounds, and real life, Stan embarks on a dangerous venture, and the stakes have never been higher.


The Black Turtle is the second book in a new LitRPG series, The Artar Chronicles by Vladimir Vasilenko. The story of a free-spirited and daring Mongoose takes a new turn and gets more and more complicated. His bright and cunning mind, coupled with the desire to have it all, put him in a bind, making him face the entire world — with no guarantee to come out on top.

My Opinion: 321 pages, $5.99, Not Available on Kindle Unlimited

A good continuation of the series. There are a few formatting issues with missing paragraph indentations and paragraph spacing, but it probably won’t bother most people. Other than that, if you liked book 1, book 2 is much the same. The story is bookended with monk class stuff and the middle with more adventuring with the guild. There is good martial arts action-adventure, regular RPG progression with increasing powers and stats, and this time there is actually some significant character development with some interesting real world events. Overall, good stuff.

Score:7.4 out of 10  

The Black Turtle (The Artar Chronicles Book 2)

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Changing World: The Fast Flow

Alder's life has become a mad race against those who want him out of the world. One wrong step, one small error, and he may lose everything he has achieved, his patron will disappear from this world, and his newly acquired friends will lose their lives.

My Opinion: 359 pages, $3.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

A slight miss for me this time. The beginning was a struggle to get through. The main character kind of just floats around and there was no summary or call back to book 1 so it was rather challenging to reconnect to the story. Eventually enough details came through that I remembered the plot, but it took like 15% of the novel. From there on, it is a very similar slice of life/Alice in wonderland like experience where you follow the MC as he goes on adventures, gets randomly portaled, and defeats other godly followers. The story has the same RPG stuff from book 1 and there are lots of new skills and abilities that the MC gets. But overall, I just found it harder to engage with the story and it came up just shy of good for me. Though the last twist ending does show potential for the next book.

Score: 6 out of 10

Changing World: The Fast Flow

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Dungeon World: A Dungeon Core Experience

In a distant world five times the size of planet Earth, dungeons and their dungeon cores have become the top of the food chain.

Millions of dungeons inhabit the planet, utilizing the various human kingdoms as a source of much-needed mana to facilitate their own growth; in turn, the humans delve into the dungeons and acquire their own power in the form of Essence, which allows them to develop and enhance themselves in a multitude of different ways. It is a symbiotic relationship that has lasted centuries and has brought about a measure of peace.

Far in the northern wilds where no humans (and therefore – no dungeons) regularly frequent, a young man is left alone when his parents are murdered suddenly and unexpectedly. Now, without friends, family, or even supplies, he embarks on a journey to find out who targeted his parents – and who he needs to enact his revenge upon. Along the way, he discovers something about himself that his parents said was impossible from the moment he was born.

Will he learn to control the new powers he has gained, or will his newly awakened dungeon core abilities consume him?

Contains LitRPG elements such as statistics and leveling. No harems and no profanity.

My Opinion: 319 pages, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

There are some really interesting concepts here but some feel like they have unfulfilled potential. The main character is a being that was born of two dungeon cores and while he looks human, he has the creation powers of a dungeon core, only without even needing a dungeon. This seems like it could be a pretty cool concept except culturally the MC is raised like a human with their same values instead of a murderous dungeon whose life depends on killing adventurers. Additionally, the MCs ability to recreate anything he learns the pattern for leads to the most OP ability ever, infinite money. Which he eventually uses to solve his problems.

Oddly, as a dungeon core I’d expected him to instinctively want to make a dungeon but that doesn’t happen in this book. Instead, he’s trying to become strong enough to question another dungeon to figure out why his parents were killed. So, he goes dungeon diving. The dungeon dives are actually pretty good when they’re not summarized, but after that’s kind of the problem. The story tends to shift directions after building up characters or story paths. Characters are developed, given history, personality, then just kind of abandoned as events get summarized and the story focus shifts.

On the game mechanics, things are a mix of dungeon core and adventurer status screens and there are some neat mechanics for several classes. But you can tell the emphasis isn’t on creating a balanced system, but something fun for the story.

Overall, not a bad story. A very interesting premise. But the OP ability to make infinite amounts of money made the big wins for the MC feel a little cheap. Still, there are some good action scenes, neat character builds, and I liked the idea of a dungeon adventurer, it just didn’t unfold well for me.

Score: 6 out of 10

Dungeon World: A Dungeon Core Experience

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!  

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Music Credits

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

Kevin MacLeod (

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