LitRPG Podcast 183 - Shadow Sun Expansion, NPC Lives 1, Invasion, Still Ain't Dead, The World Dungeon Book


LitRPG Podcast 183 -  Shadow Sun Expansion, NPC Lives 1, Invasion, Still Ain't Dead, The World Dungeon Book

Aug. 9th, 2019

Hello everyone, welcome to episode 183 of the LitRPG podcast.

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:

Shadow Sun Expansion (09:59)

A rip-roaring RPG apocalypse adventure 

Score: 7.6 out of 10

NPC Lives 1: Tales from the Dead Man Inn (13:17)

A good short story collection for fans of Alpha World

Overall score: 7.2 out of 10 

Invasion, book 1: A Second Chance  (17:21)

A new Barliona book that reminds me of Way of the Shaman

Score: 7.6 out of 10 


Still Ain't Dead (The Ex Wife Odyssey Book 1) (22:51)

A quirky sci-fi reincarnated slice of life LitRPG story. Good action, and funny for some.

Score: 7.1 out of 10 

The World Dungeon Book 01: A new Dungeon Mind (28:23)

Dungeon Core? Yes, but not particularly good. LitRPG? No.

Score: 4 out of 10 

(Play Music 2)

LitRPG News

Project Alpha: Book 2 came out as an audiobook a few days ago. I’m really proud of how well it turned out and made a little trailer. Here you go. Enjoy the first few minutes of the story.

(Play Video 0) 

This week Dakota Krout and James Hunter did a facebook live stream video talking about their joint project Bibliomancer, a story set in the Completionist Chronicles universe. Check it out if you missed the live stream. 

A quick shoutout to Dave Willmarth whose latest novel, Shadow Sun Expansion, is doing great on Amazon. It had a good launch, but just these last few days broke into the top 200s on Amazon’s best paid list. Congrats man!

Out Now!

Hero GO! (Champion is Playing Book #3) LitRPG Series 

The Fifth Realm (The Ten Realms Book 5) 

The Idle System (A LitRPG series Book 4): The Sins 

Aurora's Rift (Celestial Arcanists Book 1) 

When Hell Froze: Bloody Benny Book 1 

New LitRPG Audiobooks

Project Alpha: Book 2 

Oblivion's Peril: Endless Online: A LitRPG Adventure, Book 4 

Rules-Free VRMMO Life: Omnibus 2, Volumes 5-8 

Viridian Gate Online: Vindication

The Alchemic Weaponeer, Book 1 

Upcoming LitRPG:

Eden's Gate: The Ascent: A LitRPG Adventure (Aug. 10th, 2019) 

Ball of Light: Evolution (Aug. 12th, 2019) 

Dungeons of the Crooked Mountains (Underdog Book 1): LitRPG Series (Aug. 12th, 2019) 

Throne of the Ancients: A LitRPG Adventure (Stonehaven League Book 6) (Aug 13th, 2019) 

Scamps & Scoundrels: A LitRPG/Gamelit Adventure (The Bad Guys Book 1) (Aug. 15th, 2019) 

Dragon Heart: Iron Will. LitRPG wuxia series: Book 2 (Aug. 22nd, 2019) 

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) (Aug. 31st, 2019) 

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

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

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

First Song 2 (Sept 2019)

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

Dungeon of the Gods: A LitRPG Journey (Legends Online Book 2) (Oct. 6th, 2019) 

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

(Oct. 21st, 2019) 

Onto New Releases and Reviews

(Play Music 3)

New Releases and Reviews

(Picture 1)

Shadow Sun Expansion

The human race has become nearly extinct. 

Allistor and his small group push to make themselves stronger, fighting to survive the year-long Stabilization. 

Forced to battle increasingly stronger and more deadly monsters, they work to expand their holdings, learn better spells, and gather resources to improve their crafting. 

Dungeons must be cleared, and dragons defeated. Fellow survivors are found - some friendly, some hostile. 

Allistor considers every human life precious, but when it becomes a case of kill or be killed, hard choices must be made. 

And each day brings them closer to the invasion of Earth. 

My Opinion: 465 pages, $4.99, Available On Kindle Unlimited

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

This is a rip roaring RPG apocalypse adventure that expands past the small group setting of book 1. It neatly ends the first arc of the story showing how the MC and his group are trying to consolidate the ever shrinking human population and keep as much of earth as they can. Lots of good battles, some very bad humans that have to be dealt with, and of course some oh so good kingdom building RPG stuff in addition to the normal leveling. Even though the story is over 400 pages, it goes by in a flash. 

Score: 7.6 out of 10

Shadow Sun Expansion 

NPC Lives 1: Tales from the Dead Man Inn

Tales from the Dead Man Inn is an anthology set in Alpha World. These collected stories cover well known and loved characters, as well as some lesser seen NPCs.

Into the Deadlands: Alistern, Grimgar, Almira, Stewart, and Flora take their first trip into the sands. The longest story in the anthology, and a harrowing tale of heroics.

Lilith’s History: How did Lilith come to be with Alistern and raise five wonderful daughters? 

Bob’s Tale: Everyone’s favorite Imp is featured in this story.

Stewart’s Upbringing: How does a Half-blood Infernal grow up in a city that despises his kind?

Erin’s Story: How does the barmaid come to love a noble’s son? A story of love and acceptance.

Deirdre’s Story: What is one to do when her sister’s are finding love? Find her own, of course.

Marian’s Story: With the other three sisters having found love, Marian yearns to find her own soulmate.

Demon Lord’s Armor: The tale of how the infamous Demon Lord Armor set was created.

Skippy’s Tale: Simmer down, we know most people hate him. Understand him so you can hate him even more. 

Bob’s Tale Part two: Bob is back with more story to dig into.

Magiblood: The story of Rolland and Kim, never before seen anywhere.

I hope you will enjoy reading these stories as much as I did writing them.

My Opinion: 347 pages, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

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

All the short stories are written by the author of the main series and are set in the Alpha World Universe. With some set before the main series and others from alternative perspectives and side adventures. Like many short story collections, you’re probably not going to like every story in it but that’s ok since each isn’t a huge investment in time (except that 1st one which is like 23% of the novel). For me whether I enjoyed a story really depended on the character featured and how much I cared about them. Personally, I really liked the ones with Bob, he's a fun character. I also like the one with Skippy, an antagonist in Alpha World, just because it was nice to see his jerk perspective and some of the background stuff that happened. I also liked some of the romance while others I just didn't care about. Not badly written but I just didn't have any attachment to the characters.

While not every story worked for me, overall this is a good short story collection for anyone that is a fan of the Alpha World series.

Overall score: 7.2 out of 10.

NPC Lives 1: Tales from the Dead Man Inn 

Invasion, book 1: A Second Chance

More Barliona adventures from the bestselling author of The Way of the Shaman LitRPG series!

Reality is cruel. The rising level of technological development has led to a rising level of unemployment. They're laying off everybody, from teachers to technical servicemen. What's the point of holding onto a person if they can be replaced by an advanced mechanism?

But what are the people to do? How are they to live? Where are they to get money from? There is only one answer – Barliona. The official government project is gathering steam, luring more and more people into its net. Who knows how people will behave when they lose everything?

Brody West is one such person. Unlike most, he doesn't lose heart. A professional project manager with thirty years in the business simply cannot do that. He has a goal, and a clear understanding of how to achieve it. Nobody can get in his way – not the new class, not the strange friend, and not the unexpected foes.

My Opinion: 521 pages, $3.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

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

Reminiscent of the 1st book of the Way of the Shaman series, this is a beginner players story. A person who has been fired and replaced with an AI worker gets a new job but is required to play the Barlinona FIVR game. As a new player, he gets stuck in a training location with a class and race he's not sure he wants. The Mc makes the most of it and gets caught up in some unique storylines related to the latest race addition to Barleona, the Tiefling, a kind of half demon. You get to see good training, lots of good adventures, and even some real life storylines. The main character is smart, and I liked that he brought in his IRL business background into gameplay. 

Overall this is a fun story that is likely to be the smallest of this new series.

Score: 7.6 out of 10

Invasion, book 1: A Second Chance 

Still Ain't Dead (The Ex Wife Odyssey Book 1)

Rory Quinn is a New York police officer that enjoys chasing women, hard drinking, and beating the crap out of bad guys. He's used to waking up with hangovers that leave most people curled around a toilet. But that all changes after one drunken night of revelry. Instead of a bathroom floor, he wakes up to find he's been dead for 500 years. And if that ain’t enough, the earth he knew is long gone. Zombies, cataclysmically evil robots, and techno-demons seem to be the least of his problems, as they all pale compared to his crazy immortal ex-wife! This is a LitRPG story!

My Opinion: 231 pages, $2.99, Available on Kindle Unlimited

This is a sci fi take on the RPG reincarnation trope. The main character (MC) has been dead for hundreds of years and is brought back into a synthetic body with an RPG interface and upgrade system. He's tasked with exploring a dangerous and possibly contaminated earth surface after the AI lost contact with its creators. 

While the story start is fairly earnest, it turns into this quirky slice of life exploration of what the planet has become with satirical pulls from a bunch of post-apocalyptic films and books. You’re really just following the MC as he gets into trouble and kills his way out with the help of the AI companion. The AI coming along for the ride adds some good banter, though many of the jokes in the novel are a specific kind of humor. Note - There is one sex scene at about the 42% mark.

The RPG stuff exists in a scifi way. The synthetic body has stats that can be upgraded, as well as slots for mental powers and a class like module system that gives skills. You see a character sheet fairly regularly but I wouldn’t call the story really crunchy. 

Overall, I liked the story, enjoyed the action, and exploration of the sci-fi story world. Though I think the more serious tone of the beginning underplays how funny the story tries to be sometimes. The humor, for the most part, didn’t land with me but if it does for you, you’ll really like this.

Score: 7.1 out of 10

Still Ain't Dead (The Ex Wife Odyssey Book 1) 

The World Dungeon Book 01: A new Dungeon Mind

This is a living dungeon litRPG

A new Dungeon Mind is born and seeks a free space to dig in, grow, make dungeons, eat people – what Dungeon Minds do, basically.

This one, Iisko, finds a good place with a forest, a lake, an old abbey and a town nearby. That promises lots and lots of food from dying adventurers. Dying in the dungeons he is going to make...

My Opinion: 60 pages, $1.49, Available on Kindle Unlimited

Short and sweet, this is a Dungeon Core story, but it is NOT LitRPG. There’s no RPG progression here. The dungeon core story part isn’t particularly good either, but it does have a core than plans a dungeon and spawns monsters. It doesn’t actually feel like a complete story though and there is something odd with how it’s written on a technical level though. One or two sentence paragraphs broken up with double spacing. Very odd choice that broke up the flow of the story. Looking at the author’s other works, it feels like a type of write to market serial short story. 

Score: 4 out of 10

The World Dungeon Book 01: A new Dungeon Mind 

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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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