Aaron Hope plays video games, like a lot, just not professionally. When he entered the EpiX! Games! PVP World Championship on a lark, this college senior never expected to make it to the final round, nor to get drugged and shoved into the alpha test for World of Ruul.
The premise for this virtual reality MMO is simple. Find all eight treasures scattered throughout the world before the maelstrom's forces devour everything in sight. The only catch? You can't log off, and if you die...well, let's just say what happens in the game doesn't stay in the game.
©2017 Jason Cipriano (P)2017 Jason Cipriano
I enjoyed it a fun rpg lit novel well narrated but I think 9.99 per book would be fair I don't think £50 PLUS IS FAIR for the series while I love these easy to listen to novels the cost out weighs the experience - audible needs to at the least sell a set at a discount some are way way overpriced otherwise I will stick to reading the book
While I did enjoy the book, I felt that the amount of swearing in it was uncalled for. I'm no prude having grown up with an Irish father, but really I don't think I could let my child listen to this. Bar that story was good, performance was great.l, just don't think all the swearing was needed.
"A FUN Read for a Game Player - a Real What If?"
The Reader was Excellent. - I felt like I was playing my 1st MMO Again - "I liked it SO Much that I'm listening to it Again"
It's the 1st of this Type I've Listened to - But Cannot wait for 3 2 of the Series.
Not that I can recall. I liked his reading of the book.
I liked the interaction of the Player with the NPCs - How his being nice to them seemed to have them get move involved in his game success.
I await volume Two as One was SO MUCH FUN!
"A nice surprise and very addictive"
I would listen again since by the end of the book I was better acquainted with the subject matter and will probably hear things I may have missed the first time around. I haven't heard many litRPG books and I don't play the games. I found out that I didn't need to be familiar with gaming to get into the story quickly. It's main plot is easy to follow and it felt like I was reading a regular supernatural book. There is plenty of humor and since the characters are learning as they go through the story I was pulled along quite easily. The author expertly crafted a world and characters that are unique and engaging. I really enjoyed this take on the genre and would recommend it to any fantasy reader. My only disappointment was that there isn't a book two yet.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review
So, I don't have a toooon of experience within this genre, but what I have read is very similar in some way to either Sword Art Online, .hack, The Matrix, or Ready Player One. This one isn't too different from those in the basics either. It even uses RPO as a reference at one point. I knows what it is, and I liked that about it.
In this story, a college senior is drafted into saving the world from a nearly-sentient virus by being very good at a video game that was expressly made to mirror the game that the virus itself has created. So, it's got some common tropes in this genre, which is not necessarily a bad thing. There's only so far you can go to make 'this is a virtual-reality MMORPG except that it's actually real on some level so don't die or you'll really die' seem different, you know? For me, first and foremost, how entertaining a novel (of any genre) is to me is always the most important factor. I appreciate good writing when I find it, and super-original ideas, but if a story is compelling and told in a compelling way, I'll enjoy it all the same. Even if it uses tropes that are very familiar to me. If it has characters that I like and that I root for, chances are that I'm going to not hate it.
Anyone who reads my reviews regularly (and I can't imagine that anyone actually does >.>) will know that I love it when books reference my favorite things in enjoyable ways. So, this book pretty much wins on that front right from the beginning. In chapter one we get a character that is cosplaying Tifa Lockhart, red gloves and all, so I did a little 'heheeee!' because FFVII is absolutely among my favorite games of all time. Plus, it's from my generation, and so there's something specifically for someone who grew up or lived through my generation to relate to.
Anyways, I mostly enjoyed my time with this book. Aaron was an enjoyable character and I quite liked his adventures in leveling. He is absolutely foul-mouthed (like me!). He references a lot of real life things that I also like (Diablo, Penny Arcade, Star Wars, Skyrim, etc, etc, etc.) so my inner (and outer) nerd nearly always had an opportunity to have a little smile of recognition. These sorts of things make parts of the story you would think are boring (like level-grinding) not actually as boring as actual level grinding is. George the Bunny was also a pretty good character, though there were times that I thought he was a bit over-the-top. Ok, a few times... but I still appreciate a bunny who swears that much.
This was a pretty easy listen, because it was quick, and I never found it to be overly plodding, even during the level grind, but it was an easy listen because Nik Magill nails the narration. I liked Nik's narration of one of my favorite books ever, and so seeing his name on this one made me very excited to have a listen. He did a real great job with this one and I enjoyed my 8 or so hours with it. I will definitely put 'listening to books Nik Magill narrates' on my to-do list. As I said in my review of the last book I listened to him narrate, his voice is mesmerizing. This sounds a bit like I'm fangirling (and I guess I am in a way?), but I actually mean this as in his voice hits a note, or a timbre or a tone or whatever it's actually called that just sounds.... nice. I like some narrators because I love the accents they can do, or I love the accents they have. I like this one because I just like the sound of his voice. *shrug*
My one criticism that I can think of is that Dora, the merchant (and one of only 3 women that Aaron ever meets throughout the book) was ridiculous. She's a merchant. Her job is to buy trash items and sell some potions. So, my eyes rolled as far as they could go when the first thing out of her mouth was something along the lines of 'Hey there big boy... how can I heeeeellllp you?' *touchy touchy* (paraphrasing, but you get the idea). I'd have ignored it, but then she did the same thing to Player Two as soon as she met him. Having her just buy some trash instead of the more or less 'oh sure, I'll buy your goblin swords, but first can I have a go at your +69 Staff of Penetration?' out of nowhere for no reason would have gone over better.
Thankfully, other than Dora, this book has 2 other capable women (that's actually a lot for a LitRPG in my experience), Darkheart, who is a Paladin and the leader of the 'We need to beat the Maelstrom!' initiative, and Jo, a pink-haired sassy blacksmith. I actually really liked Jo, but she was only introduced within the last 20 minutes or so. So, we'll see what happens with her in the future perhaps.
(I was given a free copy of this audiobook by the author in exchange for an honest review.)
"Not A Bad Start"
What sticks with me the most is the foul mouthed bunny. While cute, a little can go a long way. Even the characters around the bunny start cussing more and more. I felt that story started out slow and then the end seemed really convenient for getting the final two players. There were some details that were over explained and others that were never clarified.
Overall this was not a bad read. It has an interesting concept and a different angle to how the players are in a game. I would like to see a follow up book to see if the writer improves and where the story is going, I am will not be running to get the next edition the day it comes out though. I will wait till it goes on sale.
"Prepare your brains..."
I thought it was a great take on the whole.. STUCK IN A GAME... genre that I have seen since .Hack//sign when I was a kid.. Die in the game and you die in reality... If your looking for a literary masterpiece you got the wrong book, there are foul mouthed rabbits, giant dragons, evil scientists, self centered wizards, under sexed vendors, and so much more to see... Its a story of making the best out of a horrific situation and plotting your revenge for when it is over, a story of love between a man and his gold, a story of.. well you will just have to start listening now won't ya....
I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.
"D&D VR real magic and monsters"
If I could give it 7 stars I would. This was an Awesome audiobook. Honestly one of the top 5 from the last two years and for 2017 my number one listen. Video game contest turns deadly when the top competitors are taken by a secret government agency had their brains removed and hooked
Up to a special system to send them
Into a game where if they die they die for real. How much does your will matter vs the rules of the game. Take all your re laying game skills and convert them to ones in the game. This may sound weird, my favorite audio book character is now and will probably remain for a long time George the bunny. Anytime a character can "tame" a wild creature and get it a a a pet for a party, you can't go wrong when it happens to be a psychotic trash talking bunny with some kick ass magical skills, razor wit, and a proverbial set of balls to put King Kong to shame. Can't wait for more in this series!!!I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.
"A sweet take on a LitRPG..."
Excellent Audio Book! Where do we begin? The though of having your Brain in a Jar while playing an RPG. Finding out that the game has it in for you from the moment Khan arrives! The Scare Crow Champion, and the other Monsters make for a fast read. Also, will the female Dragon missing her egg. Will Khan escape her vengeance?!?!
"Had to stop."
I felt like this one had a decent premise, and it started off all right. However the further into the book I got the worse the overall writing and characters were for me. I just couldn't keep listening to it without nearly grinding my teeth from trying to listen to it. I usually try to at least finish every book I listen to, but this was one of the rare exceptions. I do not recommend this book, was very disappointed.
"Tpyical LitRPG fare"
“This book was given to me for free at my request, and I provided this voluntary review.”
Overall my thoughts on this book are simply That this book did not bring me in, it was not spectacular it was average. The performance was great; I felt what this book lacked was well-written characters. I enjoyed the plot and almost everything else about this book; the characters did not feel like they have depth, or are particularly well executed. None of the characters felt like they popped off the page (well they cannot really cause it is an audiobook). (4/5)
Performance wise the narrator did the job he was supposed to do. Production was good, characters were well diversified, most importantly the voice did not get in the way of the story. I cannot really ask for anything more from a narrator, but on the other hand, this was not the best thing I have ever listened to from a performance standpoint, which is fine. (4/5)
Story – So I already mentioned that the characters were the weak part. The plot was well developed, I enjoyed the worldbuilding, and the pacing was well done. I enjoyed that the story moved from different environments at a good pace, the action sequences were well executed, and I had no problem following what was happening at any one time, I guess I just regret that the characters never captured me. (3.5/5)
"Good start to LitRPG series"
This was my first LitRPG book, so I was a bit worried that I might not enjoy it.
I'm a Generation X mother of a teenage son who plays MMO games these days (but not MMORPGs). When he was years younger, we'd sit for hundreds of hours with various Pokemon games - he learned to read thanks to Prima strategy guides and IGN walkthroughs. We also spent a lot of time playing Zelda Windwaker on our old Gamecube, and so on. So, I'm comfortable with concepts like inventories, levelling up, fighting bosses, accumulating mana to cast spells (mainly from playing Puzzle Quest on my kidlet's old PSP - he didn't like that game but I did), picking up items after battles, boosting stats with potions, spawning, blah blah blah.
I've never played a MMORPG like Diablo or Warcraft, so that made me a bit leery about trying out this book, thinking that only MMORPG gamers would enjoy it.
Anyway, I had nothing to worry about. Even though I'm not a MMORPG player, I was able to understand what was going on without difficulties at all. I understand that this book is the first in a series, so I'm not concerned at all about plot lines that weren't wrapped up by the end of the book, or the final scene that clearly set us up for the next book in the series. The characters are well done, the chemistry and dialogue are great, the narration is good in the audiobook, and even though I rolled my eyes at some of the sexist and juvenile stuff, I'll be keeping my eyes out for the next book in the series. This first book left me very curious to find out what happens next.
I can't comment about how well this book reflected actual MMORPG gameplay, but I've seen quite a few other reviews that talk about those aspects of the book and those reviews are probably worth checking out.
I provided this opinion in exchange for a complimentary copy of the audiobook from the author, narrator, or publisher.
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