- Traumatising content
A social worker father and his adult daughter crash land on a desert full of crystal plants and little else. City walls rise in the distance, but as the pair hike closer they see those walls are more like mountains, and the mega-metropolis behind them is long dead.
Luckily, the adventuring city of Spur is alive and green, and well outside of Ar’Kendrithyst’s shadow.
Follow Erick Flatt as he tries to make a nice life with new friends in a new home with his grown daughter at his side, but this land is rarely as kind as its people, and Erick will need to change if he wants to live the life he wishes to live.
Book 1 Completed.
Book 2 Completed.
Book 3 Completed.
Book 4 Completed.
Book 5 Completed.
[Participant in the Royal Road Writathon Challenge]
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This novel has quickly become one of my favourites, and for good reason.
The grammer is good, different characters have decently defined voices and are interesting, the scale of the story is large but well pulled off so far. The world continues to be well built and fleshed out as the characters explore it.
If anything the author is visibly improving as he goes along, and the POV chapters are really well written instead of being distracting fillers like you find in many lower grade novels.
To summarize, if you like fantasy/Isekai/Game Systems then read this book, it does all three really well.
Wow! Good fun. Some of the best characterization I've seen in RR. Except for a few homonym switches, I've caught no spelling errors.
Erick's build made me think of Delve, as did much of the early sewer stuff, but the resemblence didn't last long. The relationships between the characters feel real, but it's not the sprawling mass of complexity that Wandering Inn is - and manages to be light fun rather than ratcheting up the tragedy - at least so far.
Story comes into it's own when the protagonist starts applying Earth knowledge to magic successfully.
Story gets better as it goes on, and has some of the best characterization I've seen on RR - better than I've seen in a lot of commercially successful novels.
It's real. It's raw. It's deeply human. This story is everything I wanted from an author, and is so incredibly smart. The magic is structured, well designed, and thought provoking. The characters are so real they bleed on the page. Everyone. I love each of them, and even understand exactly how the angatonists are broken. It's moving.
The story as it moves from one plot point to the next has me leaning on the edge of my seat. The gritty, dark nature of the world is exposed, and the author also exposes the very best of us in the response of *some* of those characters in reaction. And for all of this, there is balance.
There are deeper, longer plot points and feel juicy and far too large for the holding. There are smaller, personal movements that inspire. The author never loses the "boots on the ground" mentality that some let go of for other threads. This piece must have been written either mapped to the very edge of its existance, or the author is one hell of a fabricator. It has metaphor, allegory, it shows and doesn't tell.
How is this story even here? All I can say is thank you. This is a gift, and we didn't deserve it, for free on this part of the internet.
Devouring nightmares upon you all, gentle readers.
This is my first review on this site after reading tens of stories over a period of years! This story is that much of a gem!
Amazing story. Deserves to be trending! Grammatically perfect. Characters and world building are impeccable, and it is evident that the author has writing experience since there is ACTUAL storytelling.
Longer version (I’ve tried to contain myself but here goes)
From skimming some of the critical reviews, both lovers and haters of this story agree on a few things, so let’s start there.
- This author is a WRITER! Meaning- he actually knows grammar, sentence structure and the craft of writing including dialogue, world building, character descriptions and so on. I have come across some truly atrocious examples of writing on this site, even from some of the most popular “authors”.
- The author is a storyteller. There is a clear progression, theme, character change/growth, conflict/emotion and development in the story.
- The grammar needs another mention – it is a delight to not have to guess at what the author is trying to convey because the grammar is non-existent.
Also, I get that most of the criticism is about the MC’s personality. Obviously, he is not like most isekai MC’s but I really don’t see that as a problem. In fact, it’s one of the reasons I love this story so much. I have given up on more stories than I can count because the MC’s were basically psychopaths who were willing to kill not only (humanoid) monsters but bandits/rivals/soldiers etc. without the slightest hesitation or regret. Not in defence mind, but for experience/loot or just because. Not everyone is comfortable with killing, even monsters, and he IS an avowed pacifist, so it is in line with his character. (Personally, I can’t help but feel sorry for some of those experience-kills in those stories. I know that if I was ever transported to another world, outside of killing to save my life, I would definitely not be killing sentient beings regardless of experience or treasure)
He does come around though, when he realises what the alternative to killing monsters is – and in such a beautiful, realistic way. I loved how he realised that part of the social contract in this new community, required him to change. That instead of solving conflicts, he was in fact creating conflict.
There is much more to this story than text-boxes, levelling by killing, loot and experience. There is the mystery of why they were brought to this world (the black dragon/darkness), the silent war, The Script and the feeling he gets when he is meditating, the dead city and what actually goes on in there and so much more. I can’t wait to see where the author goes with it.
Also, for any of my fellow female readers – the author clearly has irl conversations and relationships with women. There are no airheaded, strip-at-first-sight-to-show-their-gratitude women/girls nor are there any shrewish, man-hating amazons that need to be subdued because yay-the-MAN. The female characters are varied, real and behave like (the horror) real women.
The only criticism I have, is that I wish there were more descriptions to give a sense of the world. The author does it a bit here and there, but not enough to invoke the feeling that I’m right there alongside the MC, and experiencing Veird with him.
All in all, I’m so glad I found this gem of a story. I can’t wait to see what happens next and if the author by any chance sees this review: If you have any other stories hidden away somewhere, I’m very much interested!
I probably spend more time than I should on this website browsing through Latest Updates, and I have to say I'm glad I stopped in to read through this story. I like the idea of unexpected consequences, yet none the less entirely reasonable consequences. I enjoy the world, the hints of a greater surrounding area, and the focus on Erick as he struggles to move on with his life and protect his daughter... despite her really not needing protecting. I get the feeling that this isn't something that Arcs sat down to write and just kinda makes up as they go along, it feels more like theres a general framework behind the scenes, and they hope to connect the dots for the reader at a later date. I look forward to watching the story evolve, and I hope to see others take an interest in it as well.
I'll have to come back and review this properly later, my heads not really in it at the moment. That said, the story is fantastic and kept me occupied for days. You might want to rewrite the summary to be more compelling though, as it is a bit bland, but the story deffinetly isn't. I finished the last published chapter today actually and the fact that the story is still compelling 4000 pages in is amazing.
Reviewing at End of Book 3:
Definitely a fun and enjoyable story. The plot was enticing and I greatly enjoyed that the author was able to create a story with a slower pace and slice of life bits, while still maintaining growing tension/stakes. I also thought that the science and technology portions were fairly well done and very intriguing. The spell building process, the litrpg system itself ("The Script"), and the world were all very fresh and fun.
I only really had two big issues (SPOILERS and constructive criticism below):
1) There tended to be around 5-15 grammar, spelling, tense, and word-errors per chapter, with around 1-2 per chapter being enough to take me out of the story. For royalroad the writing and stylistic choices were fairly good, and the author clearly knows how to write; a couple readthroughs or an editor would be hugely beneficial though. The author also has certain verbs that he is particularly fond of and overuses, though this wasn't to the point where it became a big annoyance.
2) I had some issues with characterization, particularly with Erick and some of the side characters. For some of the side characters it felt like the author decided how he wanted to characterize them and then left them like this, with no growth throughout all three books. Zago, Mog, etc. all don't really change even in response to situations that would warrant change or even differing reactions; they all have set responses to the MC and situations that just get repeated and re-used throughout. Erick himself also has some weird characterization, though it is possible that this is intentional. His waffling between protector and hunter, pacifist when in control and killer when cornered, etc. seems to be intentional, but his complete naivety even by the end of book 3 reads as somewhat forced. Even at this point, where he clearly realizes that this new world is totally different than his old one, and that lots of the people in power have questionable morals and goals, he still goes around handing out dangerous magic constantly and without real need. His interactions seem to consist of needless flirting, long expositions on new and potentially magic to people (either as a trades/deals where he is clearly being ripped off, or sometimes even completely without prompting), or discussions where he's hesistant to kill people/monsters and then goes and kills the people/monsters and then feels bad about it.
As a positive point, Jane is characterized extremely well and her interactions with characters are well-written and developed.
One of my favorites story in RR.
Great story with well written plot, Magic system is unique, well designed, solid and structured. Characters are so real, raw, deeply human. Antagonist have their reason and i understand how they are broken. Consistent update about 15k word weekly.
Highly recommended this story.
Once you start you won't be able to stop reading. 1st story on RR that made me go patron to support the author. The way the magic unfold and the way he describes it is some of the best I've read. 100% 🔥. Can't wait for the next book and looking forward to see what happens on Veride
This is one of those characterisation heavy story with non-standard characterisation that is just enough out of the social and popular norms that it can clash heavily.
The main character is a very proud and contrary pacifist middle aged man who is thrown with his daughter in a post-apocalyptic litrpg setting and promptly decides that he prefers mysticism to litrpg and as such will purposefully clog his ears and pretends lalalaala can't hear whenever things are about the lirtpg aspects.
He is also a man who wants to believe the best of others and will try his very best to ignore any possibilities of not believing the best of others, in a setting where blood feud are very much a thing.
Most of all, though, he is a good man, and one who not only tries his best to help others, but who does it naturally without any hypocrisy.
Those things have believable consequences, and while he has had it a bit (read: way too) easy, that's a common crime of the site for things to be ridiculously easy, and he still has it harder than pretty much any but a handful of stories on this site.