Original ONGOING Action Adventure Fantasy High Fantasy LitRPG Magic Male Lead Portal Fantasy / Isekai Strong Lead
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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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SenescentSoul

SenescentSoul

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Lokan Marsland
  • Overall Score

As soon as I started reading I couldn't stop. The characters seem believable and Rain is an ideal protagonist. Most importantly though, the book is just fun to read and watching Rain try to min-max himself is probably the part that I think is missing from a lot of the litrpgs I read. I hope this story goes on for a long time.

thejoker195
  • Overall Score

Is this a cult or are people that bored?

 Now before I start I would like to point out that almost 90% of the time reviews are solely opinion based, just because someone thinks this or that of a story doesn't necessarily mean that someone else may not like it for those same reasons that the reviewer dislikes it.    

All that said I'd like to start out by saying "what the actual f?..the way the 5 star reviewer's have been singing high praise of this novel, I jumped in here expecting something atleast on the level of super minion or beyond? Or heck deeper darker( crazy feminazis withstanding I can respect the character's moody has created, ubik has to be one of the most fun takes on a chaotic character I've seen , he's like the joker but more mildly insane and less full out psychopath with a dash of technophile), so after seeing all the : ' well fleshed out characters', 'organic story' ,' the character's are not bland' reviews, I started this story all hyped for my high adventure...25 chapters later I return to the fiction page and read through the reviews again, just to make sure I have the right book because a lot of things just ain't adding up.

  Grammar: it's quite good, there are mistakes here and there but not to the level that it destroys the story.  

Style: it's also alright, not flowery, just standard and par the course for most amateur authors you see today.  

Story: To the reviewer's that say this story "hooks' you in, I have to ask: where's the hook? As this story is now, what questions or plot has been presented that makes you want to know more about what's going on with the mc and the world he's been Shanghaied to? I'm not saying that it may not appear down the line but as of this 25 chapters there's no plot, no intrigue, no action, no adventure, it's mostly just the mc killing slime, blacksmithing, learning pottery and building his skills..essentially a slice of life with stats.   How bored do you have to be that seeing blue boxes and stats excites you? The story is bland, the magic system is bland...if this was a game that you had to play and this was the magic system introduced, do you really want to tell me that you'd have fun with spells like "refrigerate" or "aura"?..stylistic choices I know, but it doesn't make them any less bland.  

Character's:  nothing exceptional,more along the lines of mediocre and as bland as the rest of the story. Mc so far has just been a glorified mop.

In summary: this is not the worst story on this site, actually considering the quality one tends to find on royalroad this is actually upper mid tier, but if you come here looking for intriguing plots and exciting characters or story telling then you maybe very disappointed, would recommend if you've nothing better to read atm and just want to pass time. On the other hand if you're kink is blue boxes and stat increments with less plot and more slice of life then this is the story for you, but who knows it could be just extremely slow paced and we actually have the next star wars or something but till then it's been boring as f and either the 5 star reviewers are a cult/hive mind of followers of the author or they know the author personally and are trying to boost his rank, I know royalroad reviews can be very unreliable but this has to be one of the biggest false positives I've seen on this site.

Sukets
  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

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.

 

 

Monokoi
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Ok... First off, im the type of reader that reads a few hours every night before bed. I don't typically get angry at what I read beacuse I find most thing enjoying but, Delve just made me hate my night as I feel like I had wasted my time.


The reason why i score this novel so poorly is because of its synopsis and character. The synopsis alone tells us a story of struggles and survival, of death and life, but no. Instead, what we got was a tale of level ups and a whole misleading synopisis. In this case, Deleve's MC purpose is to "survive" in this world. Find shelter... find food.... get money.... and by himself. In this case, it leaves a openly bland taste. Loner protagonists are cool and all, but first, they need a personality. Nothing propells the MC to move forward BESIDES himself in the need to "survive" or level up. If the loner is going to be a alone, he needs personality and taste to fill in the void of having no other important characters to move the story forward... Grimgar for example is a great example of a tale of struggle and survival that Delve is missing.


Next, the progression of this novel is a mess, chaotic in fact. I don't mind slow-progression novels as they can build and bring life to the world, but, in Delve's case, the slow progression screen time is put onto the MC leveling up making it very bland and boring.

Spoiler: Spoiler

I can also see that the author wanted Delve to have a "realistic" feel to it, but in the end, NOTHING can be realistic if the world itself is DEAD. The purpose of many isekai novels is to give MC a purpose and a reason to drive him/them forward. If not, show them a whole new world of events, tales and many mystery. In this case, Delve's MC purpose of being isekai is to find his basic needs of life. Delve dose not have a PLOT or a meaingful story that will make Delve think twice about himself or the world. What Delve need is the MC to be propelled by the event of the world, not him propelling himself. Nothing is coming into the MC's way to move him forward and explore the world besides his own self needs.

The languge barrier was also what the author had used to try to give the world a "realistic" feeling, but, instead, it just made it look like the MC was in an age-progression isekai novel of a 4 year old trying to learn a new languge and finding himself in a new world. If the author was going to include a LITRPG system into the world, it becomes unreasonable for there to not be a translation system in one of the many skills that randomly expands by itself. At first, it had appeared that the MC skill trees are base of what he "sees" and "knows" but what happens is that his skill tree randomly expands by itself. The languge barrier did not bring life into the world, but instead, it was what the author used as an excuse to bring the MC to be alone making the world very boring...

The reason why many isekai novels suceed at what they do is beacuse they all have a plot and something to drive the story forward, demon king, demons, and war. Delve as of right now to where I read to has none.

Excused me if what I mention dose happen later in the novel.
Droped @ around chapter 10

jcbutterrtoast
  • Overall Score
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An Addictive and Boxy Tale

This is a high-quality take on realistic RoyalRoad-style isekai stories. Accessible, light-hearted and satisfying, this story is like a sugar-free gelato: addictive and guilt-free. If you like LitRPG stories with blue boxes, you will crave this one...it does blue boxes very, very well.

Style 

The style's strength is its readability. Smooth and impactful, this author does not waste words. Blue boxes are simplistic, which is a treat - I can remember most everything I read, even if I scan. The system is easy for me to mentally experiment with and, most importantly, has the potential to be marvelously complex. Lot's of flexibility. PROs: Minimal dialogue tags, sensory details in inner dialogue, tastefully spaced blue boxes, breatheable system.

The spacious blue boxes might be a turn-off to some - personally, I love them, but since this review isn't about my preferences I'm listing it as neutral. Some will love it, others won't, and that's fine. This is a great site on which to post long blue-boxes.

The style's weakness is its overreliance on dialogue. On Ch. 26, about half the chapter is composed of dialogue. This isn't necessarily an issue in itself, however, most of it is pure dialogue - no description, no imagery, no inner dialogue to frame what's being said. Personally, I prefer the latter. This also has a negative impact on the Character score - it's the little details that make characters feel intimate. CONS: Heavy dialogue with minimal context.

Possible fixes: Space dialogue, create context, inserts imagery, focus on the characters' humanity when they interact.

Story

Based off of the blurb, this author isn't attempting to write anything groundbreaking - rather, emphasis is placed on psychological and physical realism, with some leeway (it is still a game world, after all). As a causal reader and LitRPG fan, I haven't come across any immersion-breaking errors that stretch believability. The character is laid back with laid-back goals. The plot... is survive? I would mark off half a star for how generic this is, except I don't give a rat's ass. Readers crave survival stories and that makes this a perfectly acceptable character motivation/plot-mover. (The Hunger Games, anyone?) Honestly, very well done. PROS: Immersive, fun premise.

The plot is slow. I like this, some won't. There are entire chapters (especially in the 20+ range) where most "actions" are internal: reflections on the universe, optimizing System stat choices, experimenting with skills...

The story's weakness is its...ah, screw it, I can't think of anything. I will come back to edit this if I do. (EDIT) Thought of something. The plot is missing motivation for human (er, person)-to-person interaction. Solitary is okay for a bit, but the longer our relatable MC goes without meaningful character growth, the less we care about him as a person. CONS: Plot requires minimal character interaction and our MC is probably an introvert.

Possible fixes: Create potential for character growth via meaningful encounters with other characters. Meaningful doesn't mean dramatic - just memorable.

Grammar

Impeccable. Seriously, you must have an editor. Or is this English-teacher power at work? This grammar is fire. Improves Style score as well.

Character

Relatable guy with surpisingly relatable reactions. Even though I've re-read the "waking up in a new game world" scene dozens of times, I didn't skim the first chapter. I like Rain. I want him to succeed. He shares my curiousity at the world, at the system he must manipulate. PROS: Realistic reactions/motivations, no handouts, relatable personality, curious character.

The weakness of this story's characters is they have generic personalities. The MC does not have a face - he is hard to imagine because I know multiple people who could step into his body and act as he does. Side characters are also generic - they are interesting in that they further the story but when they leave I don't miss them or wonder about them. While I sense that some of them have backstories (this is good) they are missing uniqueness. While the plot doesn't have to be unique, characters do. Otherwise, how can I tell them all apart? Poke fun at them them? Become terribly attatched them? CONS: Generic characters.

Possible fixes: Give characters quirks that make them standout. These could range from fleshed-out backstories, to weird personal habits (we all have them!), to stark physical traits (that our MS constantly notices). Someone might debate me on this, but IMO? If you're going to sacrifice realism anywhere, it'll be here. Characters, especially main characters, absolutely need to stand out. Unless you're H.P. Lovecraft, generic characters are tough to overcome. And even he caught flack.

 

A Personal Note  

I love this story. Totally worth a bige-read! This game-like system is one of those that makes me want to completely overhaul my own and start over (I am worldbuilding, and boy, is it a process). It's just that good. Hopefully I did this review justice.

@SensescentSoul, I think it's awesome that you're an English teacher. As a college student studying English, I appreciate what you do - I was inspired by an English teacher in high school, and if it weren't for a handful of supportive/motivational teachers like her, I wouldn't have started writing as early as I did. Thank you!

nobody9512
  • Overall Score

Good Story but the world is bit to ,,nice''

I really like the novel, the novel has it s uniqueness with his level system and skill system.

But i think the MC and the story need something like a wake up call because the story/world is a bit to ,,nice'' to be a medieval world and the MC is a bit to naive  at the moment. This teammates have said themselve that the Mc is a bit of a joke as an adventurer.
So what to do? kill some of this Teammates/Partymembers, i know it s hard to kill someone where you invested so much time and thinking in, but if it is not done i think the story will become to momoton and life is cheap in a medieval world and this is something that the author has not really shown. 

Next thing is what many authors forget about is that in a medieval world food is scare. And people are undernourished. Now some say there is magic but to get acess to magic you need to kill monster.

 

But i really like the story, i really hope the story reamins on this quality till the end

Don Wihongi
  • Overall Score

I like it but I dont like the math

Lots and lots of math, too much in my humble opinion takes up to much space and wastes  (or fills in otherwise empty spots) valuable word space.

The math is everywhere! it does help establish that the protag is a math wiz but it just feels a bit excessive and like the writer is flaunting his maths skills just a little.

Aside from this, the story is nicely paced and a simple if well-established one that is gradually unfolding appropriately, if lacking in a few areas.

It's well written, but gosh too much math!

Ooh and I almost forgot, the story really needs a direction or goal beyond surviving and making friends, some sort of plot, anything really.

Lone
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Very Entertaining And Feels Real

The title says it all. I rarely read on RoyalRoad, but this story here has firmly grabbed my attention and refuses to let go.

This story earns the slothy seal of approval.                                                                                  

Forever_King
  • Overall Score

Has everything you could want in a LitRPG. Action, adventure, monsters, and loot. All in a nice neatly wrapped package.

HoloSol
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Thankfully not another magical swordsman

Finally  Royal Road gets a decent story about a pure mage...not another magical swordsman with a harem. Currently, this story reads as a slice of life. The MC is just slowly cultivating his abilities and exploring the world, while questing/doing side jobs to sustain this life style. I can definitely see the story diverging from this route once he can become more useful to other adventuring groups. I’m excited for when his build will start to come to fruition.