Capo: Rise of a Gang Lord
by Morgan Cole
Book 1 is now complete. Book 2 being posted.
Frank is on his way to his D&D game when he gets caught up in a meth head's convenience store robbery.
While trying to escape he is shot in the back at close range and everything goes black. When he wakes up he's not in a hospital or the afterlife—he's in a different city entirely, one called San Tadeo.
Things are different in San Tadeo. Frank has a status sheet, and he can see people's names and jobs just by looking at them (unless they're walking in Shadow). Even more than in the real world, Cash Rules Everything.
With his real life behind him and his only friend a high-school weed dealer, Frank has the freedom to make new choices and set new goals. What does he want? He wants it all.
If you've always wanted a Gamelit set in a GTA-style world, here you go.
Schedule: Back to releasing new chapters. Not a lot extra banked, but going to try to do 3/week. We'll see how it goes.
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If you're looking for some good quality stuff to read, here you go. Trust me and try this one. It's called Capo: Rise of a Gang Lord, and it's fine. A smooth, mellow high with no paranoia LOL. I really love this punchline.
You should read this. It is one of the most unique "systems" for litRPGs on royal road, which combined with a unique setting and pretty decent writing, definitely makes for a read in my book.
That being said, the uniqueness of the story/system elements are the biggest draw of the story. There are definitely weaknesses. There are only 2 characters which have any meaningful developement. I think the author does a good job showing some aspects of the MC's personality, namely how the MC tends to be a cool customer when confronted with stressful situations but also tends toward escalation (even when it is to his deteriment). However, I do think he doesn't do justice to the journey from normal guy to dedicated criminal. Also, if gangland (GTA style) litRPGs were more common, the low level drug dealing early plot would be pretty bland (obviously it's not common so it's a fun read, but it has the feel of standard litRPG "grinds").
Great story with a unique GTA style vibe - well written and a world full of intelligent people making rational decisions ...
Great twists and turns and the story is very well written, a few typos but good writing, solid grammar and great pacing to the story itself right up until the end it was engaging and well worth reading.
This is just a good novel, worth the read, and wait for new chapters. Side characters are great, I think the MC needs a little more work and a real-life instead of just all work.
Capo: Rise of a Gang Lord seeks to put a rare genre combination into the test - and through skillful execution, it delivers what promises to become a trendsetter.
If you are into street crime 'a la GTA' and GameLit, then this will scratch an itch you didn't even know you had.
The style makes use of colorful descriptions, appropriately timed and sized expositions and the story moves along through dialogue. While this delightfully executed 'Show, don't tell' makes the story so much more vivid and pleasant to read, some might find that it can also bring the rhythm to a crawl. Timewise, the story has progressed remarkably slow - but this might also be due to it being the start of the series, as per the author. Once we have become familiar with the world and our characters, the pace might pick up.
While the story seems to follow a series of tropes common to the topics of street crime and empire-building, the author shows clear expertise in the application of these. At the time of this review, the story has merely just begun, with the conclusion of 'Book 1'. We can look forward to the future with the hope that the characters will push these tropes beyond limits, giving forth uniqueness in dashing boldness.
The story shines in the implementation of GameLit elements carefully weaved into the worldbuilding and fed to the reader at an appropriate pace and size. The concepts of 'Walking in the Light' and 'Walking in the Shadows' are magnificent implementations of a duality system in this crime-ridden universe, and it helps to give every single character a possibility for depth. Likewise, 'Money is King' has never rung truer than in this work, and its impact on the story's balance is yet to be properly seen but promises interesting conflicts.
As for characters. Capo possesses a wide array of characters, some commonly seen in similar genre works. Each with their quirks, past, desires, and conflicts. It paints a beautiful range of connections to navigate through. Therefore, it is such a pity that our main character (MC) falls flat in comparison to the rest of the cast.
Capo's MC, who initially appears to be your average D&D geek, is thrust into a vastly familiar world that is but very different in the most important aspects. Without going into revealing spoilers; the actions committed by this MC in 'that' short timeframe are simply bewildering in the context of his origin.
While the author has to some degree addressed this; having included moments of hesitation and thought, and the allusion of a higher being in control - it is still bizarre. The lack of self-reflection of this average geek - not only in how easily he agrees to a life of crime, but also the swiftness in which he adapts to it and delivers violence - is stunning.
On the other hand, know that this is NOT a big problem. The story remains incredibly magnetic and enjoyable; if only, in my case, this issue will scratch the back of my mind from time to time. It also is easily 'patch-able' - perhaps give the MC a slight familiarity with crime through 'crooked' relatives from before he had arrived to San Tadeo? After all, he did live in LA. Surely, his family had a bad apple.
When it comes to grammar. The writing in this work is concise, clear cut, and most importantly, fluid. Absolutely no issues there but also nothing particularly awe-inspiring. One might read from the first chapter to the latest in a single sitting. A bit more of 'flowery' would be desirable, such as plays with metaphor. But that is just a personal preference.
In conclusion, Capo: Rise of a Gang Lord IS the story to follow; and whether if it has opened the door to a new genre remains yet to be seen... it definitely has the barrel aiming through the peephole.
I'm certain I've never read anything like it. The world building is unique and fascinating. The characters are all interesting and grounded, no idiots doing idiotic things just to move the plot forward.
My one complaint is that the main character seems to be a tad to competent. While it doesn't feel like he has plot armour, for a normal guy placed into a new magical universe, it feels like he adapted a little be to quickly. Especially considering he decided to dive head first into a life of crime. But honestly this is such a small problem in such a good piece of literature it's hardly even a complaint.
Also the fact chapters get uploaded so often is an excellent bonus.
This story is pretty good , good grasp on the language and a fun concept , it's pretty enjoyable !
New and fresh style story.The plot also well writen.System leveling did not like classic level up by killing but by doing job.This style will make mc level up slowly.This will balance the story because mc will be more deficult to become OP.
Well for me OP is okay but if it excessive it will make the story will become more boring
The genre LitRPG is full of clichés, but this one remains original even after all those others. The world described is fresh and interesting, you are always eager to see a little bit more of this twisted reality and how the "system" affected everyone on it.
As for the characters, well, the main character and his friend are kind of dumb. However this also is part of the charm! They only start dumb, but as I see this is a story about growth, or corruption if you prefer, so expect to see them do dumb stuff and actually learn something when everything explodes in their faces. It makes me remember the beggining of the Breaking Bad Netflix series where Walter is always screwing with something or other. However it's kind of agravating to see that the MC is not really good at anything at the beggining...
I can only recomend it. Read this, you'll not regret it.
Well, cash and violence and street cred, anyway. As soon as I saw the concept for Capo—a GTA-style litRPG—I was in. Talk about a fresh twist on the genre. It doesn’t waste much time getting Frank from IRL to the isekai/game world, either, so almost from the get-go you’re immersed in learning the new rules of this not-a-GTA, which are all pretty entertaining.
Characters: I didn’t realize until about chapter 4 that Frank was still in high school, but overall he’s a laid back, pragmatic guy whose go-with-the-flow nature keeps getting him in trouble. Unlike some isekai MCs who end up in the new world and immediately don’t care about the family or friends they left behind, Frank seemed realistically concerned about his dad and upset with Joe. He doesn’t spend all his time dwelling on it, but he didn’t ignore that part of the Frank’s backstory, either, which I thought was believable.
In addition to the MC, the side characters are great. Not just the hot chick with the big boobs or the comedic gangsta stereotype. They’ve all got dark and light sides to them, just like real people, which makes them way more interesting to read about. I'm almost as invested in Manny as I am in where Frank's going from here. That shadow's getting dark, bro.
Game: Nice balance of crunchy and soft mechanics, and it’s got a cool twist on EXP. Plus it’s not your standard kill all the mobs litrpg; there are some real consequences for combat in San Tadeo. I really like the system for Walking in the Shadow vs. Light and the mirrored stats for each side, and it’s hilarious how the characters keep bringing up that it’s their constitutional right to walk in whichever one they want to. Also, the Favors was a great way to get the in-game story rolling for Frank. The rival gang dynamics added a lot to the tension, too. Also, the Fatally Hip might be the best gang name ever.
Readability: No high-falutin’ fancy stuff here. It’s all easy reading, like you’re listening to your buddy tell you the story in person. I zoomed through all the available chapters in no time. They just flowed by, which I think is a really underrated skill for a writer to have.