Monsters plagued the lands for too long. No matter if one had fangs, beak, teeth, skin, fur, or feather, or was tall, stout, or diminutive, the people suffered. Until the Gadgeteers came with a device that could allow people to fight back. Powered by one's own magical power, feeding off of monster Essence, the Arbitrium bracer turned the tables.
It also changed society. Strength of one's level cap was all that mattered. The strongest were Kings and Emperors. The weak or those too poor to afford the marvelous device, destitute. And so it has been for millennia.
All that mattered was one's level cap. High, low, a fate decided the moment the strange contraption came alive. Too high and you were a threat to those interested in keeping the status quo, a weed to be nipped before it could grow and take root. Too low and you were nobody, fated to be a bit more than a simple farmer.
What if someone, somewhere, came up with a zero for their level cap? Unable to use Essence, unable to level up. On all of recorded history, it never happened.
Until it did.
In a small village of fur-less and tail-less ape-beastkin, a boy found out he was uniquely handicapped.
Nero's level cap was Zero.
But he'd never let that stop him from reaching his goals.
All stories have already been told. We merely reuse elements from them. From Joseph Campbell's Monomith to Stephen King's advice, and that encyclopedia of tropes you've visited, fiction has been dissected and reassembled countless times. One will surely find elements inspired on other works here. Just like cooking from basic ingredients, the recipe and presentation is what really matter.
This is a fantasy adventure, of someone that goes from a zero to a slightly bigger zero. It will have romance but no harem. Cruelty but with hope dimly shining ahead. Lightweight where it can be, heavy where it must.
Thanks for reading.
Cover Credits (The cover is CC-BY-NC-SA):
Steampunk Spider Bracer, by Daniel Proulx. CC-BY-NC-SA
Picture Frame, @anaterate, Pixabay license.
Some odds and bits from here and there.
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