Original ONGOING Action Adventure Fantasy High Fantasy LitRPG Magic Male Lead Portal Fantasy / Isekai Strong Lead
Warning This fiction contains:
  • Gore
  • Profanity
  • Traumatising content

What would you do if you woke up alone in a forest in nothing but your pajamas?

This is a story about a man trying to answer that question as he navigates a world of monsters, magic, adventure, and numbers going up. It isn't all fun and games, though. Survival is tough when you are alone, and the dangers of this world are not to be underestimated.

This is a world governed by a system of stats, skills, and dialog boxes. It is vital to know how the system works if you want any chance of having a life of meaning. Too bad someone forgot to include the instruction manual.

 

Fundamentals:

 

Cover by Miha Brumec

 

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  • Grammar Score
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Author
SenescentSoul

SenescentSoul

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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
1: Woodland ago
2: One on One ago
3: Pothole ago
4: Statistics ago
5: Alone ago
6: Skill ago
7: Slime ago
8: Clarity ago
9: Commerce ago
10: Broke ago
11: UX ago
12: Class ago
13: Party ago
14: Math ago
15: Mine ago
16: Cleanup ago
17: Return ago
18: Rescue ago
19: Succor ago
20: Outcast ago
21: Smith ago
22: Search ago
23: Paralysis ago
24: Answers ago
25: Clay ago
26: Gratitude ago
27: Hunted ago
28: Plan ago
29: Practice ago
30: School ago
31: Gear ago
32: Well ago
33: Reunion ago
34: Kin ago
35: Dream ago
36: Focus ago
37: Modded ago
38: Geography ago
39: Arrival ago
40: Lair ago
41: Maze ago
42: Guesswork ago
43: Fall ago
44: Beast ago
45: Signal ago
46: Light ago
47: Core ago
48: Crucible ago
49: Downtime ago
50: Baggage ago
51: Completionist ago
52: Specialization ago
53: Forward ago
54: Adventure ago
55: Armored ago
56: Noble ago
57: Restored ago
58: Charge ago
59: King ago
60: Snow ago
61: Spree ago
62: Complication ago
Reviews

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Sukets
  • Overall Score
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Self proclaimed DnD Min Maxer

Style

I don't actually have any problems with his writing style, it's just par of the course for LitRPG and most novels on RR. It is kinda bland thought, and sometimes he adds unnecessary math exposition that adds almost no depth to the novel, because what he concludes doesn't need the math equations written as text.

Story

This is where things get rough. Firstly, there is a reason as to why most Isekai novels give language skills, because as seen in early chapters it stagnates character progression. It is a neat idea, but just as "silent/mute" characters, it is a really hard thing to write. I think the author started to notice that, because he accelerated the language learning process.

My second and biggest irk with the story is about the self proclaimed Dungeons and  Dragons min-maxer. As an actual dnd min maxer, I couldn't be more angry with this title, since MC has no idea how a build actually works. Mc has no idea what kind of role does he want to perform, and his build is the mirror of it. Even until chapter 30 he still doesn't know if he is tank, dps, control or support, because as I see him now, he is none of them. He also can't solo and can't party, since his aoe doesn't distinguish allies from enemies. His damage auras forces him into melee range, but since he lacks upfront damage, tankiness and mobility, he loses against close range fighters. While not having a way to deal with long range attacks makes him susceptible to long ranged threats.

The correct play here by the author was actually continuing with the whole hybrid melee/aura synergy. Because since his damage is from dots, what should have been done is transforming him into a kind of off-tank dps/support. But that makes for some really bland fights (a meat shield triying to outlast enemies HP), so I think the author had this idea in mind at the start but changed his mind after triying to write action scenes.

There is a reason as to why most DnD masters don't allow for multiclass when there are known min maxers on the table, and the reason is because those peoples will read every-single-skill to achieve the maximum cheesiness. So MC's reasoning of not wanting to read walls of text should have been a dead giveaway at the start. He is tunnel visioning so much on Aura, that it physically hurts me.

I enjoy slice of life, so I don't actually need big story hooks, but I was expecting a more developed system and world building, but at the end of the day, both are 2d.

Grammar

As English is not my mother language, I'm not actually the most recommended person to review this, but I've found errors.

Character

MC is a bland "average guy" with tragic past, like 99% of novels on RR. Language barrier actually hurted character development, since no substantial connection could be made between characters. This stalled actual character connection for almost 20 chapters, with some post hoc justification from the author to deal with language.

TL;DR

Overrated af, terrible build progression for a DnD veteran, bland characters.

 

 

Rattatoskr
  • Overall Score

Well written, Interesting, but lacking something.

The story flows well, the characters are fairly interesting as is the world. The leveling system and the MCs absolutely boring build are kind of a let down, you can see the potential but it just isn't realised. Also the MC is just to childish, the best way I can explain it is like this, he isn't a man, he is a water boy. And this is the stories biggest let down, if you like characters like that then you will love this story though. 

flriley
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Portal/LitRPG done well

The premise is one that can easily be found on Royal Road.  The main character winds up in another world and finds himself with a status screen, and oh yeah, magic works.

What makes this different from the others in this genre, is that the Main Character doesn't come with the knowledge of how to speak the language, how to min/max his skills, how his skills work or magic work, or have even the basic survival skills.

His life is as much just trying to understand and survive as it is gaining levels and stats.

This ignorance is refreshing, and perhaps the most realistic narrative of what would happen if a person were dropped in a strange world with different rulesets. 

Amazing 5's across the board.  

Grammar is on point, and the author is responsive and quick to fix any mistakes that are pointed out.

Zethuron
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A great realistic adventure in the making

This may just seem another story of the transported to a Fantasy world with LitRPG type, but quickly shows itself to be different, and it improves on the genre standard by so much.

I honestly did not expect much when i started to read this, but now its one of my actual favorites. I have been totally impressed by this story and how enjoyable it is to just keep reading, the story is also very entertaining with all the situations the MC gets in. I just loved every moment of reading this.

The MC is just, realistic, even if he may act stupid at times, this is mostly due to him not knowing near enough about the world and its inhabitants, sadly for him, that includes language differences, which has proven to be a major problem for him. He does have quite some flaws, such as being impulsive, and that makes me only like him more as a character.

 

The world so far has been well-constructed, but due to certain reasons, not much has been revealed yet. So far it has been shown to be a pretty standard Medieval Fantasy world, with there being no major differences from the usual standard.

The author has written one of the most well-constructed LitRPG Systems i have read so far on Royalroad with this story, its very different from the LitRPG systems used in other stories and really thought out, with there being no easy shortcuts to becoming powerful, its basically all how you plan your stats, skills/skill trees and classes and then act accordingly.  There are even alternative ways of earning exp aside from combat/crafts.  But the greatest difference is Customization, and thats quite hard to explain. I personally like the fact that even though the status screens appear on most chapters, they do not hinder the reading experience at all.

Good grammar in this fiction, with there being barely any grammatical errors or typo's, and even if there are, they are easy to detect and do not hinder the reading experience at all, the authors use of grammar remains very consistent throughout the story, not only that, the author has a good gasp on the English language, with correct word usage in his sentences.

Great pacing for this story, the flow of the story just keeps you reading the whole time. The story as a whole feels realistic, with no forced stuff or weird plotholes or anything like that.  The author has done a great job at making this story as detailed as possible without detracting from other aspects of the story. There is also a good balance between  adventure, humour, action and worldbuilding (what there has been so far).

Ill be honest that i just cannot find anything specific to criticize the story for,  it is just that good.

 

I have to applaud the author for all the work he has put into making sure this story is of high quality while also making it enjoyable to read. I have faith the author will be able to make something truly great with this story, considering what he already has written so far for this story.

I wholeheartly recommend this story for any fan of Fantasy, this has been a story of really high quality so far and there is just so much potentional to be explored here. So thus, start reading this story already!

Bizmatech
  • Overall Score

Min-Maxxing for Dummies

I ended up dropping this one, but more out of personal taste rather than from any lack of quality on the story's part.

 

Why you may like it:

It's a very in depth LitRPG, and the author has clearly put a lot of work into the system.

Unlike most LitRPGs, the action scenes are nicely detailed. Aside from the main character's internal monologue, people don't just go around shouting the names of their attacks. The author actually takes the time to tell us what's happening with descriptions.

I dislike the LitRPG subgenre because many writers either care about their system more than their story, or use the system to help cover up lazy or sloppy writing. In Delve, it's clear that the author hasn't skimped on the prose, and is genuinely working on giving us an actual story... even if that story is about the system.

Why I dropped it:

Too much G, not enough RP. The main character is basically obsessed with figuring out how the system works and making it his bitch through the power of mathematics. Very large parts of a lot of the chapters so far focus on the MC sitting around with his notebook as he looks for the best way to optimize his skill points and daily experience gains... And every bit of it is written down for you in glorious/horrific detail.

Do you want to know what his mana regeneration will be if he puts a skill point into Ability A as opposed to Ability B? Do you even care? Will it affect the plot at any point in the future?

No. Probably not. I highly doubt that a character's life and/or the fate of the world will ever be determined by a single misspent skill point.

But what if it was two points?! Think of the possibilities!

No. The answer is still no.

Overall:

If you're a fan of a series because it's a LitRPG, you'll love Delve. If you enjoy a series despite it being a LitRPG, you probably won't love Delve.

If you don't feel to strongly either way, then, at the very least, it's worth giving a try.

ThePhantomMan
  • Overall Score

Don't get how this is as popular as it is

I really don't get how this story is as popular as it is, i find it incredibly boring, I have read up to chapter 29 ( the latest release as this is being written) and very little of what has happened is interesting, the main character has just recently learned the language, so up until now we have basically only had his internal voice describing everything. and since the MC is summoned from another world into this one, he has pretty much no idea whats going on, the novely the main character not knowing the language wears off really quick when so many interactions with other people boil down to "I pointed at a thing, and they told me the word for it, this continued for hours"

looking past that, there is no hook to the story, there isn't a small description you can give that would make someone want to read it other than the fact that the MC doesn't speak the language (which, again, wears thin quickly). even at the latest released chapter (29) the plot is maybe just starting, with a few of the characters making a plan to go into a mine to fight stuff.

overall I don't get how this is as popular as it is, let alone 3rd on best rated.

manhw
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Not sure why this is so popular

I want to be honest here, I've read up to chapter 23, however I still fail to see the reason for this fiction's popularity.

Let's get the good out of the way first. The style of writing is pretty decent, and the grammar is also pretty good. So there aren't any technical issues in the writing. But that is as far as the positive aspects of this story goes.

 

And on the negative aspects, first of all, story is very boring and dull. This can be tolerated however, only if the characters were actually good. Unfortunately, MC and his actions cause me to want to repeatedly bash his head in against the nearest hard object. And there are basically no other characters, as the MC can't speak the local language. The language part was an interesting idea that was executed pretty horribly.

MC also has no personality, no agency, and acts on his whims instead of from a rational perspective. He has no goals, and spends his time doing stupid shit instead of bettering himself. His inner voice is also cringy to the extreme, displaying the immaturity of the MC.

To give an example, there is a point in the story where MC joins a party where no one wants him, and where he will not get a part of the reward from the quest (basically free labor). His reasoning for this is very flimsy, that he wants to "make friends", with people he can't even communicate. These people also, in no uncertain terms, tell him that they don't want to associate with him. His skillset also isn't geared towards party battles but more as a solo adventurer, as his main means of attack is an indiscriminate AoE skill.

 

He also isn't a very bright fella, instead of spending his limited mana on his offensive aura and increasing it's level(skill levels go up with mana use), he instead spends it on a skill that is basically a glorified mop.

If he were to increase his offensive potential, he can take on higher leveled quests and kill monster easier, which in turn can increase his level and strenght even more. Instead of going this route, he meanders around with his skills. In the beginning of the story, he proclaims himself as a Dungeons & Dragons min-maxer, however he lacks even the most basic awareness for any sort of coherent build.

 

Overall, this story needs a rewrite that either completely alters the MC or the worldbuilding.

Stultus
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How to never poop again

 Meet Rain. Not Falling Rain, the Undying Savage, just Rain, a normal dude.

Until he is taken to another world for no explicable reason?? Only, instead of being able to y' know, just do magic and kill stuff or build an epic kingdom from a few goblins he found in the woods, Rain can do not much, but probably die of starvation.

Luckily he is saved by some... Hobos? Oh wait, one of them has a sword, so it's definitely a fantasy world. Thankful for the rescue, Rain manages to get over being treated like a captured assassin, and luckily, also learns magic! 

Watch as Rain carves his mark upon the world! Or more likely, just get along helping other people out.

Style Score

Delve does not particularly stand out in terms of the author's personal touch. The author does not sprinkle the story with references, or quirky jokes, nor does the author re-enact his dark and twisted self-insert fantasies. The story is told as a story, and the author makes it clear that he is only the writer, not a character within the story.

Story Score

Let's be honest here. "Delve" is not a unique story idea. A man is taken to another world, how will he survive is a question that numerous people on this website have answered, and it is invariably, either "comfortably" or "seated upon a throne of bones, drenched in the blood of his enemies, and his enemies enemies, and then their enemies too, just for good measure." However, that doesn't mean that Delve is a bad story. The cliche is fine, as long as you do it well. 

Grammar Score

A large thing that makes me scream on this website is good story ideas ruined by immersion-breaking grammar. I might seem quite pedantic and fussy when it comes to grammar, but that also means good grammar is almost a guaranteed follow and review from me. Thank you SenecentSoul, for editing your work.

Character Score

Once again, let's be honest. Rain is not a unique character. He is average, and as such, a bit of an "insert-self". However, he a well written, and clearly defined and described character, who wanders around cleaning everything within ten meters of himself. He interacts with other characters, and also absolving them of their need to poop. He does not control or order anyone, but instead barters and converses with other characters, and we see a person, not a puppet walking around.

Conclusion

Overall, Delve is a good story. It does not strike out as a unique bestseller, but it certainly should not be forgotten by the way-side. Delve has found its place as one of those stories that you do not use to get your friends into Royalroad, but as a story that you come back to once you have read all the headline acts. The characters are funny and interesting, the story is mellow and smooth, and the grammar is not messed.

I definitely recommend you read it.

DocteurNS
  • Overall Score

It's... kind of dull?

Being realistic can be a good thing, but a story still needs a plot and interesting characters. Here, the feeling of novelty wears off after chapter 6, and at chapter 15, I still struggle to find a reason to care about the protagonist.  You shouldn't have to wait so long for a hook. And with no stated goal beside general survival, there's very little to look forwards to.

fanobody
  • Overall Score

An isekai well made

No cheat skill

No god that help you

No japanese stupidity

Original system

No talk with the system to explain you the world

No exposition

Original character

No waifu

Hard work

No demon king yet

No bad guy that attack the mc for no reason

I think it will be the best Portal Fantasy i ever read if it don't stop