Original ONGOING Action Adventure Sci-fi Female Lead Male Lead Multiple Lead Characters Non-Human lead Space Opera War and Military
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The Triumvirate has known peace for 10,000 years. Their technology dwarfs that of Man, and for almost a century now Humanity has done everything they have asked of us, in order to learn even a fraction of their secrets. With their help, we have abolished poverty, and hunger. War is now a thing of the past. We have made incredible strides in a very short time period...and yet the Triumvirate races keep us at arm's length. They see us as half-evolved apes, too violent even now to keep company with our betters.

They call us...Barbarians.

But sometimes, a Barbarian is exactly what you need.

(This incredible piece of artwork was a commission by Harry Rowland (@rowl_art_)...and I couldn't be more amazed at the job he's done. If you're looking for something like this, give him a yell.)

A larger version of the cover can be found here

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Author
HeWhoLooksSkyward

HeWhoLooksSkyward

Loresinger

Achievements
Word Smith (V)
Village Head (V)
Great Commenter (VI)
I Am Ascending (VI)
Toplist #500
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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
Barbarians - Chapter 1 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 2 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 3 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 4 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 5 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 6 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 7 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 8 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 9 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 10 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 11 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 12 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 13 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 14 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 15 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 16 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 17 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 18 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 19 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 20 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 21 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 22 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 23 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 24 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 25 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 26 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 27 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 28 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 29 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 30 ago
Barbarians - Chapter 31 ago
Barbarians - Epilogue ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 1 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 2 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 3 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 4 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 5 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 6 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 7 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 8 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 9 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 10 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 11 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 12 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 13 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 14 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 15 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 16 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 17 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 18 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 19 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 20 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 21 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 22 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 23 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 24 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 25 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 26 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 27 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 28 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 29 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 30 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 31 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 32 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 33 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 34 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 35 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 36 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 37 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 38 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 39 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 40 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 41 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 42 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 43 ago
The Barbarian War - Chapter 44 ago
The Barbarian War - Epilogue ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Prologue ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 1 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 2 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 3 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 4 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 5 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 6 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 7 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 8 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 9 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 10 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 11 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 12 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 13 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 14 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 15 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 16 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 17 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 18 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 19 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 20 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 21 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 22 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 23 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 24 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 25 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 26 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 27 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 28 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 29 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 30 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 31 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 32 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 33 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 34 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 35 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 36 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 37 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 38 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 39 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 40 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 41 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 42 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 43 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 44 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 45 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Chapter 46 ago
The Barbarian Betrayal - Epilogue ago
Reviews

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kao
  • Overall Score

Like Starship Troopers Meets Silver Ships

This story has the right kind of pacing that isn't a total technical blog fest like a certain Harrington...you KNOW what I'm talking about; that huge amount of military jargon abc's and etc. 

This reminded me of the early days of Starship Troopers, the BOOK, and NOT the travesty called the 'movie' and 'tv' series. 

 

It felt military sci-fi, without  the heavy info dumping of current Harrington space military. Sure, there is a place for details...but honestly, there are times I just want to stuff go boom and blam, and not worry TOO much about all the technical jargon involved. 

 

1 being : "This is my BOOM STICK!" 

and 

10 being: "With the usage of sarkian field studies and mergers of inkton metals, we were able to incorporate the two ideas and create this new Neutral Engine of Time, or NET as we call it. With NET we can field more gear to intercept all incoming rounds of missles and material attacks, this would in turn provide a pinpoint barrier of interference and shut down all incoming attacks by a field of nearly 89.9%!" 

I like details, but...Um I'm gonna lean towards the 5 in between. And this story walks that line. 

Today is a day for BOOM STICKS!! and Pew Pew! 

 

 

Bandicoot
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Dare I compare to Weber?

Only 10 or so chapters into it.  Lots to read and ruminate over, a nice plot twist, plenty of action that isn't just graphic violence but actually moves the plot forward.

 

The pov that switches between groups helps accentuate the thought processes without holding your hand and adds to the urgency and tensity of war without drowning in detail. 

The one thing I would say is that the characters aren't super well fleshed out, but the still have enough to make them relatable.

Nicholas Obviouslyfakelastnamebecauseprivacy
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Aside from a few times when I thought about it too much and questioned some logic (like the fact that there are no defense platforms and the fact that an RKKV is so blatantly overpowered that it's really the only viable and cost effective method of attack.)

 

Worldbuilding: The author's worldbuilding is fantastic, and also short. Lacking massive info dumps it is all summarized quickly in the first few chapters as "Humans tripped over space hippie planet, space hippies had super cool tech, we became their overly violent pet, they tried to house train us away from violence all the while treating us like monkeys, and then in a time of need they came to us to defend them". That's literally it, and yet the world feels vibrant and real.

 

Consequences: A mistake many people make is being afraid to kill people off to build tension, create an epic climax, or characterize someone. Either this or they either create blatant sacrifices who have less character than a plastic bag and are only there to die, or they sacrifice people left and right to try and use death as a cheap way to build tension. This book walks the fine line fairly well, using death to make everything more real and gets you invested early on. It also uses this to make it seem like death can strike at any time. My only complaint is having the boot camp guy die when he did. It felt kind of obvious, and it would've been better to change it up more so that it didn't feel like trimming a now useless character.

 

Plot. Now this gets extra points because it both has a plot, and the story doesn't fuck around. Like 5 chapters in, bam space war. Yet it doesn't feel rushed. You never really get to nail down one character as the main character, so everything is about the plot. This means the story moves briskly, avoiding slowdowns.

 

Now I'm tired, so I'm going to finish this off with a cautionary word to the author: Let the story end. I know, it's tempting. You'll lose a big chunk of your audience by starting a new book. Why not just... keep this one going? Please author, let the story end when it reaches a good ending. ELLC is a good example of what happens when you don't do this. It's stale with the comedic value wrung out of it's characters, it's jokes more stale and repetitive than Garfield, and the story only recently picked up with the author throwing increasingly strong enemies at Boxxy. Don't become the next ELLC that doesn't end until it's tired and dead, end the story on a high note and let this be known as a good story, not a "good start but..."

TMarkos
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A fantastic, satisfying, wonderful story

Hoo boy, you're all in for a treat.  I'm cheating a bit because I've read Barbarians in its entirety elsewhere, but the first chapter is perfectly representative of the quality storytelling that continues right up until the satisfying conclusion.  This is a wonderful story about humans doing the things we do best, tightly constructed and well-written.  

You're still reading the review.  Stop reading the review and read the story.

michaelhenson
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Impeccable by Any Standard

TL;DR:

Just read the damn series.

 

Barbarians is a series about persevering, pushing past your history and into a better future, dark buried secrets and epic war. Each and every character is deep and thought out, their interactions logical, based on their goals and experiences, rather than necessity of the plot.

Everything done by a person in this series has weight, and that sometimes comes back to haunt them, but the overarching message is that hope exists even in the darkest of circumstances, and the human spirit of discovery, ingenuity, and damned single minded stubbornness are our constant, if somewhat quiet companions.

 

I am a relentless jerk when it comes to grammar, it has caused me to drop series, or completely overlook them after a mere few sentances. He Who Looks Skyward has impeccable grammar, no sentance structuring sounds unnatural, and if there is a typo is always extremely quick to fix it.

 

Disclaimer:

I started reading HWLS' stories about, 2 years ago, on a little known (at the time) called HFY (Humanity, Fuck Yeah) (https://www.reddit.com/r/hfy) it quickly became clear why he is one of the most respected and prolific authors there, as his writing captured simultaneously the best and worst traits humanity had to offer. His stories ranged all across the spectrum of Sci-fi, always giving a critical, yet optimistic veiw of the future.

 

So, I may be a somewhat pre existing Fan.

 

That being said, arguably his greatest work yet was in the form of a series he said he didn't think would stick, Barbarians. Instead, the now 3 volumes have become some of his most beloved and cherished works in a community of now more than 100,000 people, in part thanks to the quality writing and hopeful messages conveyed in his works.

I cannot fully describe to you the intricacies of his storytelling, because I am not skilled enough to convey the emotional weight his writing can wield. Suffice it to say that in a community of thousands of prolific and quality writers he is one of perhaps 3 that have earned the unnoficial title of Wordsmith.

I cannot over emphasize the impact HWLS has had on my life. His stories got me through a number of dark times by being fantastical journeys through possibility, allowing me to look for possibility in my own life.

He Who Looks Skyward can be found on reddit at https://www.reddit.com/user/hewholooksskyward

humphryz
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This is one of those stories that when you read you think, what is this doing on royalroad, there is no harem, system, op mc, poor grammar caused by a non-English speaker (sorry it hurts to read sometimes but just keep practising guys ) or a hiatus in sight. I really should be paying for a book like this.

One of those rare few on this site where It's beyond my knowledge to offer decent feedback. I kept it in a separate tab because I tend not to stray from singular male protagonists for probably silly reasons, so if you're like me and that is also holding you back just start reading the damn thing.

Some brief thoughts

  • I got an ender's game meets starship troopers vibe from it
  • kind of would prefer more focus on the specific characters in the first book but I kind of get why that wasn't the case
  • Loved the incorporation of music at the start of the chapters really set the mood while reading. Well done.
  • I feel like there needs to be more. More battle details, character depth and realism/reason. I definitely understand that outline vibe other reviewers have pointed out. 
  • Not another story where we get the standard characters fearing what humans are capable of and trying to come terms with that. Instead, we see our brutal nature being understood and utilised as a strength which personally really touched something deep with me.

Seriously, just give it a read.

 

Zethuron
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Fantasic Sci-fi from r/HFY

This has been a really amazing read so far, an sci-fi story of high quality. I can seriously count this story to be a worthy addition to my actual favorites.

Near hunderd years ago, Humanity met the far more technologically advanced Triumvirate, a seemingly perfect utopian society that has known peace for thousand years. Humanity as a whole changes, in the hopes to get accepted among the races of the Triumvirate and to recieve superior Triumvirate technology, but that proves to be futile, for the Triumvirate believes that Mankind is inherently too violent to be accepted by them, yet even the Triumvirate is not as perfect as it may seem at first, they are stuck in their old ways that they held to for thousands of years, they reject change.

Yet that change comes, with war. For a old foe of the Triumvirate rises up again, to right a great wrong. Now the Triumvirate is thrown into a war, a war they have no idea how to fight at all, in a desperate move, they turn to Humanity to help them with their war, yet the changes that the Triumvirate forced on Humanity, backfires, for even the Humans, known for their skill at warfare and killing eachother, are not at all ready for this war after near hunderd years of peace.

 

This story has no single main character, there are multiple and it switches perspectives between them. I can say that the characters are wonderfully done, they feel like real living people, that have only known peace in a near perfect society, and are suddenly thrown into the chaos of war. The characters im personally liking the most are those on the Task team(madlads all of them!) , and the two Saurotaur recruits. This story also features short perspectives from a character on the enemy side, and that part is well done!

Somewhat i feel like all the characters could be developed even more, but even as they currently are, they are already very well developed.

Not much to say about the setting, its well done with some interesting ideas that are excuted in a satisfying way. The multiple races differ so much from eachother, yet are also like eachother in some ways, is well written overall, i sort of want to see the races develop over the course of the story, not only the invidual characters.

A thing to note on the seemingly unrealistic war and its follow up, is that the Triumvirate started from literally nothing in terms in military, that may not seem like it is so bad, as we have had such events happening in history, of which the most notable one is America during WW2, but this is actually worse than it looks at first, for a military power is not only built on the weapons used, but also on the people who use them. The Triumvirate simply had no practical knowledge of space warfare, and the same went for humanity.

 The story as a whole, is not about the war or the battles, they play a major part in it, but they are not the focus of this story. Its rather on the civilizations, and how they change because of the war breaking the long utopia, of the suddenly changed power-dynamics of the universe.

I was gripped in instantly by the writing of this story, and it just didnt let me go at all until i was all caught up with it. The author has a way with words, the prose is just amazing, the pacing of the story feels fast enough, without overdoing it. Theres little time wasted on unneccesary details since the author keeps the story moving instead of stalling it.

Grammar in this story is near flawless, personally i have not detected any mistakes at all, which speaks for how much effort the author does in making sure its all perfect.

I  honestly have barely any complaints about this story. Its damn near flawless with its amazing high quality storytelling.

Another small thing i like about this is, the small tidbits of quotes at the start of every chapter, they fit perfectly for the chapter they are in. Also the cover art fits perfectly for the kind of story this is!

This is damn good, and earned its spot in my favorites for good reasons, i recommend about anyone, especially fans of sci-fi and those familiar with R/HFY to come read this story already, there is no reason to wait with starting to read this wonderful action filled story.

chunky_knuckles
  • Overall Score

This story is borrowing from the likes of Prey(RR) vague tones of the Troy Rising series crossed with Honor Harrington.
But with none of the snap or polish those stories have.
I am not getting an original feel, there isn't an aspect of this story that makes me feel like I'm reading something new.
The characters are lacking in introduction in the first chapters, I only have humanity to root for, which is rather abstract.
Scenes feel rushed as if an outline for chapters were barely filled in without adding extra details.
A solid start, but nothing incredibly special. Read Prey or Troy Rising if you want a better version of this story.

tarakis
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Fookin' A this story RAWKS

I just stumbled upon this story and it Grabbed me and won't let go. The story justs touches something honest and even primeval in me. This ain't humanity struggling with itself, this story is about a great mistake/ wrong done and it coming back to bite those who did it with a vengenance and humanity gets dragged into it. The story style and grammar along with the characters are done extremely well and The Author is to be commended at the highest levels.

:D CHEERS (c)

alexanderyou
  • Overall Score

The idea is fun, but the execution is somewhat rushed. None of the characters or pacing feel quite 'there' for me, but I might just be spoiled by deathworlders.