The Perfect Run
by Void Herald
The Perfect Run is now available on Amazon Kindle.
Ryan "Quicksave" Romano is an eccentric adventurer with a strange power: he can create a save-point in time and redo his life whenever he dies. Arriving in New Rome, the glitzy capital of sin of a rebuilding Europe, he finds the city torn between mega-corporations, sponsored heroes, superpowered criminals, and true monsters. It's a time of chaos, where potions can grant the power to rule the world and dangers lurk everywhere.
Ryan only sees different routes; and from Hero to Villain, he has to try them all. Only then will he achieve his perfect ending... no matter how many loops it takes.
The Perfect Run updates on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Cover by Vitaly S. Alexius.
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TL;DR Don't let the plethora of rave reviews by this author's fanboys fool you. If you like intelligent, thoughtful, or sympathetic MC's this story is not for you. I explain exactly why, in detail, below.
The prose and grammar are good. And the world building is interesting. It is set in an alternate earth with superpowers and near-future sci-fi tech you typically see in fictions with super heroes. The problem is the MC.
MC acts in stupid or suboptimal ways because he is easily bored. This makes him less than sympathetic, as it really feels like a waste of this powers.
As an example, in the very first chapter, he's shot to death by a superpowered gang enforcer who is after the owner of the bar he's just made a delivery to. So he loads his save, then drives through the front of the bar with his car to run over the superpowered Assassin before beating him to death with a bat. Sounds kind of badass right?
Except that he then has to bribe the shit out of the bar owner to have him testify to the cops that he was helping. He also needs to pay for repairs. Then he has to bribe the shit out of the cops so they don't arrest him for being a vigilante because he isn't a licensed hero or law enforcer. He ends up spending several times the money that the delivery job earned him.
This dude has all the time in the world to make decisions because he can load quicksaves in real life. Yet one part of this entire encounter perfectly encapsulates his idiocy and thoughtlessness. After hitting the guy with the car, he goes to the trunk of his car and stands there contemplating what weapon to pull out on the guy as the guy is struggling to get up, running through multiple weapons in his head.
Yea... The thing his, his save/load point was 2 hours before the enforcer showed up. He was camped in front of the bar for a good while waiting for the enforcer to show up. Yet in all that time, he didn't think about what weapon he'd use after driving through the bar with the car. He had to wait until he was in the middle of a confrontation with a superpowered combatant to start thinking about it. Hell, he could have intercepted the enforcer outside of the bar or in a way that produced less collateral damage so he wouldn't have had to bribe so many people. Yet despite all of the additional subjective time he must have experienced through his powers, he does not act more mature than his age. Instead, he acts like a wacky hyperactive toddler.
It almost makes the title and Synopsis of the story a lie. He's looking for the perfect run? In what universe was the outcome of this encounter anywhere near perfect or ideal? Why would he even attempt to do it this way if perfection was what he sought?
Even his costume is self-admittedly impractical for fighting. But he wears it because it looks good.
In the very next chapter, the opening lines talks about how he does his tinkering in boxers because clothes represent conformity, and taking his clothes off represents freeing himself from the constraints society imposes on him. What utter hipster nonsense. Eccentricity for eccentricity's sake. Experimenting with weaponized gadgets requires PPE. Especially, as he himself put it, he hates loading in quick succession to solve for things.
In other words, the MC is a grandstanding idiot more concerned with dick waving, face-slapping, and standing apart from the crowd than prudence. For anyone who has read Outer Spheres, he's like a post time-skip Garth. Poor impulse control. No foresight. No prudence. And a grade schooler could use his power in smarter ways than he does.
I found the first chapter annoying to read due to the poor writing. A quick proofread would fix some of the obvious issues.
Story is a bit rough but interesting.
Maybe the quality increases as the story progresses, but I think i'll pass. Not worth my time, when the author isn't putting enough deligence into his craft.