Original ONGOING Action Adventure Drama Fantasy High Fantasy LitRPG Magic Male Lead Portal Fantasy / Isekai Slice of Life 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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SenescentSoul

SenescentSoul

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The Days after Christmas
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The Cake is out of the Oven
Word Count (13)
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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
63: Assessment ago
64: Exposition ago
65: Ring ago
66: Encounter ago
67: Footrace ago
68: Departure ago
69: Hangover ago
70: Skating ago
71: Perspective ago
72: Preemption ago
73: Inflamed ago
74: Elevation ago
75: Adaptation ago
76: Meeting ago
77: Chill ago
78: Heatsink ago
79: Slumber ago
80: Trapped ago
81: Breakdown ago
82: Intent ago

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10tailedfox
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Starts strong, but quickly fizzles out

Reviewed at: 33: Reunion

Rather disapointed, but I had to drop it around chapter 50. MC has some weird mannerisms and traits that clash with his established character, striking me more as a teenage boy, or a young woman, rather than an adult construction worker he's established to be early in the story. Additionally, the plot stagnated significantly after around chapter 10-20. As the MC gains experience and strength, the looming struggle to survive disapears, and leaves no trangible drive or urgency left in the story for the following 30 chapters. The world doesn't expand beyond the MC's tiny bubble, and the endless rambling and micromanaging of his build grew tiring after the 40th info dump. What drove me over the edge however, was MC's half-baked resolution to awaken (Grant leveling abilities) to every person in the world. This came out of nowehre for me, and cemented the MC as jarringly childish for an adult. This, alongside the aformentioned lack of urgency in the story, finally killed my interest.

 

If you enjoy more of the inner workings behind skill/stat management, and are generally a fan of LITRPGs, this might be a much better experience for you. Unfortunately for me, this one is a miss.

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.                                                                                  

Bobbert
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First off late me say that I think this is a good story.   That being said it is currently rated a bit too high for my taste (3rd best story on this site). 

As of the first 27 chapters it is off to a good start, but I don't see much which differentiates it from other good litRPGs.  That isn't to say it is bad.  It just doesn't have anything about it which makes it unique as of yet.  This is a world that we have seen before many times. 

It is still early in the story though, so hopefully as more time passes it will become something truly special.  I think it has a chance to.

CatVI
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The pacing is just right, but MC needs more guts and sense of self

Reviewed at: 78: Heatsink

Style : I really like how he uses the stats and sheets. And how the whole system is entwined into the culture of the world. Unlike other fictions where it is just there as a power measure, here it actually has cultural values, taboos, rules associated with it.

Story : Quite good. Some mathematics, some action, some slice of life. The character at first seemed to be progressing in strength really really fast but actually stayed weak. After he reached a platue and you thought that was where he hit a bottleneck, he started refining his fighting style and start to get stronger.

Grammar : No complains.

Character : The mc character is a goody toe-shoes beta male. This is for sure. So now that that's out of the way.

I love him. Just cause he is the good guy. There is no but, he was a guy raised in the 21st century. With todays upbringing, the average male would turn out like him. Mild, timid, a bit cheesy, and easy for veterans to scam.

The author actually makes these bad characteristics one of his likable points. And how he uses his naivity to change his companions bit by bit. He is also being changed by the world, but it is not so one sided like other fictions where in chinese xianxia the mc turns full murderhobo or in japanese isekai the mc turns into this radiant alpha male.

I like the side characters too as they each have their own agenda and story about why and how their personality today is what it is. 

One thing I am starting to hate is how much the mc gets pushed around by the strong. AKA Halgraves, The watch girl, that force mage (halgraves wife) and he just endures. Well to be fair it is not like he has other choice as weak as he is. But I don't really like it. As a reader it feels i am being surpressed. 

Specially the watch, it seems like they have an all you can insult pass towards the mc (in latest chapters). Even when they ask mc for favour they insult him first and mc doesnt even get mad. Which is kinda starting to tick me off.

Other than that, can't say I am unhappy with this novel. Will definitely keep following it. But have to remove .5 start from the mc character score.

Gerald
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To immature for his age

Reviewed at: 44: Beast

I'm expecting the MC's attitude to change later on but it doesn't. He's still too immature for his age ... And his point of view about the world is... Perfect? That being kind and righteous lead to... Glory? Hmm... Probably not... Anyone can be killed at anytime... Imagine if someone kicked your face for unknown reason? What would you feel in real life? But for our great MC - "IT'S OKAY, I'LL PAY". Come on ... SERIOUSLY?  

  • The story was good.
  • The grammar was good
  • Focus more on his status rather the story itself 
  • Too many unnecessary chapters

 

jcbutterrtoast
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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!

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.

Synce
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So far decent though the MC actsquite questionable

A typical portal/isekai premise with the MC winding up in an unknown world for no real reason gaining access to a system including magic.

What sets this one apart is mostly that the protagonist starts with no knowledge of the language which makes the start very interesting.

The story hasn't progressed very far and by chapter 30 there isn't actually any story involved at all. It is pretty much just MC trying to figure stuff out with no real goal or main plot in sight. I personally don't dislike that.

Spoiler: Spoiler

 So all in all a good story with good writing but a kinda underwhelming and dumb MC.

A lot of math though so hopefully all the math in his build checks out at least.

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

Leifman
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5/5 , Perfect.

Nuff said. (Really.. i can elaborate and further break it down like the best reviews on the front page with the most upvotes, but i think they did it more justice than me and i honestly have nothing but praise and compliments to the Author and what he created here with this AMAZING piece of storytelling,characters and plot. let alone the 'keeping you on the edge and wanting more but not abusing the known cliches and keeping it fresh and amazing every single chapter'.

Bravo.