- Sexual Content
- Traumatising content
In a land ruled by vile monsters, where death is common and life is cruel, one outcast endeavors to have it all. When misfortune drags the odd goblin Stryg from his forest home and into the ruthless city of Hollow Shade, he must try and adapt to a world that only sees him as a dimwit savage.
Stryg finds himself embroiled in a school of magic, where an aristocrat's smile is filled with deceit and the simplest of remarks may lead to death threats. Yet nothing will stop him from aspiring to his beliefs of glory: power, honor, and food with salt.
But as Stryg navigates through the muddled grey waters of the Ebon Realm, he will learn that some monsters lurk everywhere.
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I like this story. It follows an antiheroic young goblin trying to achieve his dreams in a Realm of Monsters. Stryg is not an idealistic hero who is always brave, idealistic and ethical; but neither is he an Edge Lord who thinks that he is the centre of the universe and anyone who says otherwise or looks at him funny should die. What he is, is a young goblin interested in obtaining power and sex, who has a rather ignorant but pragmatic and somewhat self-centred approach to life. He is realistic enough to know when fighting authority figures much more powerful than him is a bad idea; but still quite willing to hold a grudge and desire to get even with his attackers, particularly if they tried to kill him. Smart enough to bide his time, even if he is not always wise enough yet to judge when are the best or most appropriate opportunities to strike back. Somewhat naïve and ignorant due to his young age and lack of exposure to the greater world, outside of what little his tribe actually taught him. A rather simplistic and barbaric tribe that does not seem to have high educational standards and reside in an area that is sparsely populated by society. He learns and grows more capable as he gains new experiences.
The story starts with him at the end of his “childhood” and reaching the age at which the tribe considers him an adult. He is a bit of an outlier in his tribe as he does not fit in well with the rest of them and is weak in a society that values strength. As he grows in strength and knowledge, he becomes more capable but never to the point where he is OP and far stronger than all around him.
He also eventually goes to ‘magic school’ to become a mage, but not until more than a dozen chapters.
The other characters are interesting and have their own complexities that make them feel more real. This is not a Gary-Stu story where the entire world and characters revolve around the MC. They have their own lives, goals and ideas that drive their actions and make them more rounded and believable.
The writing style is clear and engaging. The worldbuilding is also quite good. The author has built a cohesive and quite expansive world populated with different people, races, and organisations; without falling into the trap of providing walls of exposition that make you feel like you are reading an encyclopaedia. There is also a glossary that contains much of the worldbuilding information revealed in the story, so you don’t have to rely on your memory of refer back to an earlier chapter.
The spelling and grammar are generally good. There are a few minor errors, but most of them seem to have been found and mentioned in the comments and corrected by the author. Being willing to read and act on these comments meant I gave the book an extra star on the style score. And as far as I can tell, the author seems to have noted and responded to most comments where someone has spotted an error (or what they thought was an error). Hope this helps.
The story is still relatively new, so I will update my review as the story continues. If you enjoy this genre, this is a very entertaining story and you should at least try it out. The only caveat being that you have to be willing to read a story with 'dark' elements, such as: slavery, gore, profanity, and sexual (possibly traumatising) content.
Review initially written when Chapter 52 was the latest chapter. Updated when Chapter 75 was the latest chapter.
Holy shit. I just went on a 19hour binge reading session from 11am to 6am. And I was pretty confused and sad when the 'Next Chapter' button was greyed out. And then I went to sleep immediately and now that I woke up I just had to leave a review. Great story! Can definitely recommend reading it!
Stryg is a monster, a half goblin from Vulture Woods whom gets abducted by a slaver and starts his adventure in the city with the greatest mage academy in history. Now anybody can come up with this idea, replayed thousands of times on this site, but the execution was clean. Above highschool level grammar, and 21st century writing style with little to no useless text.
"ENGISH MOTHERF***ER, DO YOU SPEAK IT?" And finally we hit that rare 3% on this website where the answer is a resounding: YES.
5 stars accross the board. Stryg has a no nonesense personality that doesn't start to change until the early chapter 200s, but this presents itself as a strength for saving text space in developing a large cast of side characters with some relevance.
The only problem with this is that I caught up and the wait for new chapters is painful.
I hope Stryg gets some closure about being a "bad omen". The magic system is okay. But the introduction to lifeforce as an offensive tool seemed a bit abrupt. I hope the interplay between magic and lifeforce comes into focus as Stryg trains with Gale.
These are just my opinions about what I would like to see in this story, but I also acknowledge that the story is developing in a decent direction as is.
I don’t have much experience with advanced reviews but I wanted to leave one for this fiction, as it is very good. If I had to give you a quick idea of what kind of story it’s this so far, I’d say it’s about barbaric goblin outcast of his tribe gets stranded in a ‘civilized’ city and cultural differences are made evident quite fast. Now many stories would make the goblin a slave or relegate them to the lower social strata and I was worried the story was heading in that direction when he gets to the city, fortunately it’s not that kind of story, as just as he was about to be made a slave the authorities discover he is a mage born and lucky him this city seems to sponsor every mage born and offer them scholarship in exchange for serving for 10 years once graduated, and raising his social ranking to just a bit under the nobles. After that the story continues with our MC adapting to the Magic Academy and the city Hollow Shade and progressing in his path to become a powerful mage.
The style is straight forward but descriptive enough with the characters and scenes that you can picture them clearly. It doesn’t get in the way and it’s not awkward. Good sentences and formatting. No complains here.
This seems good too, didn’t notice anything sticking out while reading so 5 stars.
It’s nothing new, but in general I just really like magic school stories when they are well executed, combined with underdog MC who is not a wuss it finishes elevating this fiction to for me. Other things to praise are that the world building seems really interesting and developed while not being overwhelming with exposition, which I commend the author on. And while we are still just starting to learn about the magic system it also seems to be quite in depth and well developed kinda hard magic system. I also like that it’s not a lit-rpg as it feels more immersive like a classic fantasy story.
I feel like the main character is not going to be everyone’s cup of tea, as he is after all born and raised a goblin. You won’t get a kind, power-of-friendship, shounen protagonist. Stryg is ruthless, doesn’t mind killing when he feels threatened, resorts to violence quickly, he kinda sucks at dealing with people, has anger issues, etc… But I gotta remark that he is not an anti-hero or straight up asshole. You can understand why he act’s as he does and he doesn’t come across as unlikable which is a delicate balance to achieve with this kind of MC. You still root for him and want to see him growing as a character. I think he has good potential character growth ahead, as he slowly learns how to treat with people in a reasonable manner and that maybe goblins CAN have friends. Also I’m invested in seeing him get stronger and become a badass mage after he starts of so weak.
The side characters are also colorful and interesting, to the point that when a POV switch happens (not that frequently) I enjoy reading their perspectives and seeing their reactions to the small barbaric goblin roaming the city.
If something of what I said sounds interesting to you give this fiction a try. I’d say give it at least until he gets into the city before considering dropping it as it has quite a different feel than the first 8 chapters. I’m loving the story author-san, keep up the good work.
One sad lonely night, I was looking through the trending page to find something to fill the void when suddenly I found a story with barely 4.5 stars, and I though why not?
To be honest this story took me by surprise. How many times do you find a random story on royal road to turn out to a well thought out saga filled with mystery and actual character progress? Not many I recon.
As the author have said many time that he has a clear picture how the story will progress so hopefully it will not get dropped anytime soon. The lore is big with some original monsters and unique cultivation. The world is realistic enough and some arguments that you put up gets fixed or are given an explanation on.
The characters are not one dimensional, even the side character. Every side story makes us empathise with them more and more (to the point that author would be getting death threats if he was remotely influenced by GRRM). You can easily feel the character growing throughout the series (well sometimes some characters backpedals and do dumb stuff, looking at you Loh.).
I do find some grammar mistakes once in a full moon but full moon is the time for supernatural stuff so wouldn't be surprised if the author got influenced by the monster in the dark.
Overall, the story is annoyingly good with enough mystery to not put everything onto the platter but enough lore to get the nerds theory crafting. The MC is has a unique perspective which is always enjoying to read, and most definitely not OP (yet).
But beware is your heart is weak because the story gets haunting sometimes. The tags stay true to their names.
I like this story, a bit of a social misfit tribal goblin making his way in a civilized society with lots of action and excitement.
Grammar is good so far, I love the writing style and the story so far. The characters are decent, and the side ones get filled out before/when they get their limelight. The author makes excelent use of forshadowing.
The author has done quite a lot of work setting up the setting and laying out interesting characters. The main character is a well-developed outsider who clearly does not fit in, in any society. He is not strong enough for the barbaric culture that raised him and he is too barbaric fr the civilized lands he finds himself in. The side characters are all well thought out and have solid characterization. Overall I would recommend, I find it quite enjoyable.
The plot of this story is alright. It's got some moderately original worldbuilding, at least as far as the magic goes, including how that affects society. It has some drama, which is occasionally satisfying, although more often just frustrating.
The MC has really, really strong 'chosen one' vibes. I mean, his village doesn't burn down, but he's disowned by his tribe, he's looked down on and bullied, he gets a big break when it turns out he's special, etc. etc... yeah. It's basically goblin Harry Potter blow-by-blow. The reason I'm reviewing at this chapter is because one of my two predictions for his specialness was confirmed, and I'm a bit exasperated by it; I was thinking for a while that of course he'd
have all the colors of magic.
given his background tropes, and sure enough, here it is.
Oh, my second prediction is:
He's a dragon half. He probably has all the elements of magic, too, as well as all the colors. That special sight? He's seeing magic. The reason the dragon didn't kill him? Yeah.
So that's a bit dissapointing, honesly.
Well, the other thing that bothers me... all the main characters, and most of the side characters, are unpleasant people. The main the trio is basically an idiot, a psychopath, and a rotten noble. The barmaid is a gold digger, and moreover has no plot relevance. Plum was decent, but is probably gone after an event seemingly designed to highlight how awful everyone is. There's hints of character growth, but it's mostly just angst, and it's probably not going to remedy the situation anytime soon.
I don't think everyone in a story needs to be likable. But I have a hard time reading a story where no-one is likable. The plot has made up for it somewhat, but it's starting to feel predictable, so I'm beginning to get bored.
The story's alright overall, I guess. It's not unreadable, but it's no longer fresh, and the bits I dislike are beginning to show through.
Stryg was a very interesting character at the beginning; I saw a lot of room for character development.
At first, it was a real pageturner that I couldn't stop reading.
Now, though, it's getting a bit stale for me with the ark about emotions and "power of friendship". I don't really see how else Stryg would be able to develop, but even so, it's getting stale.
I'm also a bit disappointed that Stryg is just somehow always the best and most overpowered now. It showed a lot of promise at the beginning, and it still does now, but it's just not my cup of tea. Might be someone else's, though.