Original ONGOING Action Adventure Drama Fantasy High Fantasy LitRPG Magic Male Lead Portal Fantasy / Isekai Slice of Life Strong Lead
Warning This fiction contains:
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Summary – Level 1:

Delve is an isekai litrpg that follows an average guy who just happened to wake up in a forest one day. He wasn’t summoned to defeat the demon lord or to save the world or anything like that, at least as far as he can tell. The only creature there to greet him was a regular old squirrel.

Soon enough, he meets other people, only to discover that he can’t speak the language, and that not everybody immediately trusts random pajama-wearing strangers they met in the middle of the wilderness. Things generally go downhill from there, at least until the blue boxes start appearing.

Delve is a story about finding your way in a new, strange, and dangerous world. It’s about avoiding death, figuring out what the heck is going on, and trying to make some friends along the way. It’s not about getting home, so much as finding a new one.

Did I mention that there will be math?

 


 Summary – Level 2:

 Okay, but what are you in for, really?

Well, this story is supposed to be realistic, or at least, as realistic as a fantasy litrpg can be. The main character doesn’t instantly become an all-powerful god and murder-hobo his way across the universe. Delve is, at its heart, a progression fantasy, but that progression is meant to feel earned. The numbers in this story actually mean something. Everything is calculated, and if you find a rounding error, I expect you to tell me about it. That said, if math isn’t your cup of tea, there is plenty more that the story has to offer. Characters are meant to feel real, and progression isn’t only about personal power; it’s also about allies, connections, and above all, knowledge. Figuring out how the system works is a significant theme.

 

...

 

What, you want more details? Okay, fine, but this is going to get a bit spoiler-y. Are you sure?

 

Yes!

 

Really sure? I mean, this summary is practically half as long as the first chap–

 

Now!

 

Okay, okay!

The main character becomes a magic user, but he takes a route that is not very popular in adventurer culture, namely that of a support. There is a full magic system with various spells, skills, and abilities, but our MC decides that aura magic is the way to go, and that the only stat worth investing in is mana regeneration. Most people at the Adventurer’s Guild think that this makes him a bit of a dumbass, but he’s playing the long game. We’ll see how that works out for him, won’t we?

Because of his build, the MC levels up fast, at least compared to normal people. There are no cheats, though, and he is limited in other ways. There are some clear and pretty obvious downsides to his build. That’s what makes it fun, no?

Morals? Our MC has them. Again, we’ll see how that works out for him. Realism, remember? Would you be okay with killing someone and looting their body? I sure hope not.

POV? The focus is on the main character, but there will be occasional varying perspectives from people around him, or involved in the events related to the main plot. It isn’t going to jump all over the place.

Tech is standard medieval stasis. No smartphones, but the MC does have a technical background. Computers and their programming might be involved. There might even be a bit of uplifting down the road, who knows? Anyway, it isn’t the focus. He isn’t going to invent the gun in chapter 1 and change the face of warfare.

Is there romance? Not so much, or at least, not as a major theme. Friendships are more the name of the game. Building relationships and knowledge about the world, not a harem. Definitely not a harem.

There is exploration, though not as much of the geographical nature as you might expect. It is more about exploration of the system and the culture.

The pace is slow and detailed, sometimes verging on slice-of-life. The action is meant to be realistic and grounded in the numbers, and it is intended to have meaning beyond simply punching things until they stop moving.

The general tone of the story is grey, and some parts can get quite dark. People die. Sometimes, people with names, but not anywhere near GoT level. There is plenty of light, too, though, to balance the darkness. The world is dangerous, but overcoming that danger is why we’re all here, isn’t it?

Anyway, if you’ve made it this far through the summary, you clearly like words. I hope you enjoy the story!

 


Cover by Miha Brumec

Summary Updated: 2020-06-14

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SenescentSoul

SenescentSoul

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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
001: Woodland ago
002: One on One ago
003: Pothole ago
004: Statistics ago
005: Alone ago
006: Skill ago
007: Slime ago
008: Clarity ago
009: Commerce ago
010: Broke ago
011: UX ago
012: Class ago
013: Party ago
014: Math ago
015: Mine ago
016: Cleanup ago
017: Return ago
018: Rescue ago
019: Succor ago
020: Outcast ago
021: Smith ago
022: Search ago
023: Paralysis ago
024: Answers ago
025: Clay ago
026: Gratitude ago
027: Hunted ago
028: Plan ago
029: Practice ago
030: School ago
031: Gear ago
032: Well ago
033: Reunion ago
034: Kin ago
035: Dream ago
036: Focus ago
037: Modded ago
038: Geography ago
039: Arrival ago
040: Lair ago
041: Maze ago
042: Guesswork ago
043: Fall ago
044: Beast ago
045: Signal ago
046: Light ago
047: Core ago
048: Crucible ago
049: Downtime ago
050: Baggage ago
051: Completionist ago
052: Specialization ago
053: Forward ago
054: Adventure ago
055: Armored ago
056: Noble ago
057: Restored ago
058: Charge ago
059: King ago
060: Snow ago
061: Spree ago
062: Complication ago
063: Assessment ago
064: Exposition ago
065: Ring ago
066: Encounter ago
067: Footrace ago
068: Departure ago
069: Hangover ago
070: Skating ago
071: Perspective ago
072: Preemption ago
073: Inflamed ago
074: Elevation ago
075: Adaptation ago
076: Meeting ago
077: Chill ago
078: Heatsink ago
079: Slumber ago
080: Trapped ago
081: Breakdown ago
082: Intent ago
083: Boon ago
084: Entry ago
085: Guide ago
086: Explosion ago
087: Pet ago
088: Casualties ago
089: Consequence ago
090: Buried ago
091: Essence ago
092: Fracture ago
093: Tomb ago
094: Illusion ago
095: Pressure ago
096: Sanctuary ago
097: Arrested ago
098: Stability ago
099: Calm ago
100: Storm ago
101: Fireside ago
102: Reaper ago
103: Illumination ago
104: Mind ago
105: Connection ago
106: Imprint ago
107: Interface ago

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wulfian
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I was a bit sceptical at forst when I started reading, but it quickly grew into one of my favourite stories.

Working on a unique path of classes and skills trees (being unlockable) Delve also works a lot with maths. The story is well written and follows logic. Magic being enacted both logically and mathematically and is well proved.

The MC is powerful, but not overpowered, having his own weaknesses.

My only critique is the pace of the story. While originally interesting and filled with learning the story slows down, with little progression between chapters. There is no learning, no new skills, the MC's level is currently capped and the situation seems unchanged for the last few updates (though I believe I see light at the end of the tunnel).

It is a brilliant story, and I hope that it continues just as interesting as it started.

Bolgar
  • Overall Score

ees nice, very nice - Borat

Reviewed at: 102: Reaper

Good story, detail like the language, device usage, like clarity to learning said language.

Nice to see MC using math, though after skimming to build my own mental models to belay well described fight scenes, I'm not really reading it. I dig its presence though, it goes to his character in day to day activities, and, for reader to, relate to MC by identifying, either by shared behaviour (if not love for math math math) with either MC or his varied campanions reactions (or recognition of them perhaps).

 

The interweave of factions, characters, story, world building is neat. Nice struggle, development, until the crucible of the lockdown, exposure, building intensity, and wider world imposition. 

 

Lots ofpotential. Only issue so far is speed of chapter release. Its probably that RL planning plotting, taking over ze whirled. Not to mention surveying fur raw unrefined storeium, smelting it, to workable ingots of story. Then forging stories and hammering in details on the anvil is hard quirk. The parts are assembling nicely though. 

 

In the words of a passing Orc Foreman, back in reality (or its close approximation); Zug zug, back to work lazy peons.

Aditya Naik
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  • Grammar Score
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Interesting but too much text....and math.

Reviewed at: 101: Fireside

Great plot development as well as character interactions, interesting take on on the power system.

Not so great action sequences.

And absolutely horrendous (for me) info dumps, blue screens and the protagonist's thought process with inane calculations that ruin immersion. I understand that the long introspection are part of the character and his chosen path to power but I've taken to skipping mostly anything written in italics unless it's short. And honestly it has very little impact on overall plot. 

Should you like math, min-maxing, steady power progression and character creation with a heavy focus on utility you'll like this fiction, otherwise just skim through the long text walls and enjoy the story.

Avo
  • Overall Score

A fine read held back by unnecessary math

Reviewed at: 091: Essence

While I have no issues with the story overall I find that the author has the habit of making whole chapters focus on gaming the settings system with math. While others might enjoy this aspect I find it jarring and disruptive to the otherwise fine LitRPG setting. That said I do recommend you read this.

gjin733
  • Overall Score

Mechanics suck.

Reviewed at: 15: Mine

My biggest problem with this story is MC's build. And considering it's a major part of the book, there is a giant gaping bleeding plothole that should have killed the protag or at least the story long ago.

 

Spoiler: Spoiler

 

HoloSol
  • Overall Score
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  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

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.

MMMMMM
  • Overall Score

Great idea, bad execution

Reviewed at: 82: Intent

The idea behind the system is really good. To the point where anyone who wants to write a litrpg should read this. Also, the build of the MC is really interesting and leave you wondering how will end up working. Thats all the positive things i have to say about this fiction. 

The characterization is plain bad. At this point we know more about all the sidekicks than the protagonist. Rain is presented as a flawed character, which leave room for growth but is too slow. 82 chapters and he is still a useless weeb. The problem is not his shortcomings but his lack of redeemable caracteristics (not brave, not intelligent, not cunning or good at social interactions... nothing). This lead to believe that everything he obtains is just pure luck or plain plot armor.

On top of all this defects there is the glacial pace. The author is not willing to speed it up or to reduce the huge amount of exposition regarding the interaction between the MC and the system.

On a personal note to the author: you should stop taking your readers by the hand and treat them like 8 years old who needs to be told everything. Left thing unsaid, stop the constant fanservice/response to every question. Focus in the story.

Azranova
  • Overall Score

Refreshing Take On a Common Theme

Reviewed at: 30: School

Going to another world that suddenly has magic and stats is a concept that has been used many, many times. However, this story has a new, interesting take on it; what with the character not knowing the language or having any real help, instead finding his own path.

KoboldPatrol
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excellent litRPG isekai, I want more of it

(as of chapter 23)

Delve tells us the story of Rain, who finds himself in a fantasy world with a stat/skill system. Nothing new so far, but there is more: Starting alone, without money or equipment and without speaking the local language is very rough and Rain is clearly struggling. After a while manages to cope and slowly get some basic stuff together.

Style: The story is told in third-person style from Rain's internal point of view including a focus on the thoughts that go through his head. The descriptions are good.

Story: Not understanding the local language and having to start from zero both in possessions and in knowledge is a very refreshing difference from most of the other stories here on RRL. The LitRPG system is nice with some standard stats and a very complex and interesting skill (-tree) system. The pace of the story is fine, by chapter 23 lots of things happened but it doesn't feel rushed.

Grammar: Very good, the occasional typos are quickly corrected when noticed.

Characters: We learn mostly about Rain, both from watching him and from his inner thoughts. He's pretty smart and tries to get the best out of his finite stat points and skill points with the little information he has, min-maxing even a bit too much in my opinion. At the same time his difficulty in acclimatization to the new world shows a good depth and the inclusion of realism in his characterization. The people he meets in his travels are a mix of helpful, neutral and a**holes, but all feel realistic as far as they have been described so far.

In total, this story is both excellently written and captivating, making me look forward to the next chapter. If you like lots of numbers in your LitRPG then you have to read it.

manapotion
  • Overall Score

This novel had a great start but became worse over time until I had to give up.  The main problem is the agonizingly slow pace of the story combined with a low release rate.  A large part of this story is the MC's internal monologue as he tries to crunch numbers and figure out the mechanics.  This is not a bad thing when done in moderation, but the author's OCD is just not that interesting when done to excess.