The Last Game

by Burningsock

Warning This fiction contains:
  • Gore
  • Profanity

Twenty years of fighting, an endless struggle for a better tomorrow. Years of bloodshed to buy humanity just one more day. Decades spent forging himself into a juggernaut of steel and bone. One night that all changed.

Suddenly finding himself back at the start, Jack must answer the question, what would you do with a second chance? Would you tread the same path to power, no matter the cost? Would you walk a new path, one full of the unknown? Most important of all, what do you do when the world is set on a timer? Life as you know it will end, no matter what you do, do you let Fate have its way, or do you position yourself to pick up the shattered pieces of civilization?

Jack will grasp his chance at redemption, and protect humanity from that which slumbers, undisturbed for ages past. To do so he will have to be strong, and he will need help. Will he trust any with his dark past or will the burdens of a modern Prometheus prove too much to shoulder.

As the world changes humanity finds it no longer stands atop the food chain, how will it deal with myth and legend made real? A world of pure potential awaits those with the will to see it. While fates worse than death await those unlucky few that delve too deep into the secrets of the unknown. Six paths to infinite variety. Four days till everlasting fame. Welcome to the last game ever played.

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Burningsock

Burningsock

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Steelheart
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

This review is primarily adressed at the author, to hopefully give ideas in which direction to improve his or her writing. For readers I'll say the following: This story has potential. It currently mostly reads like a first or second draft, and it could be significantly improved by editing the prose a bit.

 

Style

This is the part that needs the most work. The prose is fairly simplistic, with most sentences having a very similar structure. Sometimes they are also structured in ways that, while not grammatically wrong, sound weird. Additionally, there is not enough variance in the words used, so things often sound repetitive.  The author has clearly thought about how the magic system and the world interact, however this information is often presented in the form of infodumps.

 

Story

This is where I see the potential. While the story hasn't truly picked up yet, the author clearly has an idea of where they want it to go. The worldbuilding is flawed, mostly due to the aforementioned infodumps, but also due to another reason: The MC has referenced historic events from his past several times without giving us any context. (Saying something like, "I first saw him at the Battle of [Insert Location]." without us knowing where that is, why a battle was fought, who participated, and who the referenced person is.) This is information that instantly goes forgotten, because it has no direct impact on the story and the reader doesn't have any context to understand its significance.

Now, this doesn't mean everything is bad. The author is introducing the world in fairly easy to understand chunks, which is good and works mostly. However the decision of what information to make available to the reader at what time and in what way requires further thought. Generally I would suggest leaving out any information that is not strictly required at the time.

One last thing: This could be just me, but I have absolutely no idea what the starter town and the people in it look like. Is it surrounded by walls? Does it have a castle and a town guard? Is it in the middle of a forest, close to a river or in the mountains? Is there a mayor, a noble or a town council, or who else rules the town? Are the people poor or rich? Are there different districts? What species live in the town? I would expect questions like these to have been mostly answered by now.

As a tip: In order to avoid infodumps, I would try to add information by describing precisely what the MC sees and feels. What I mean by this is the following: 

In the first chapter, the MC makes his way to the mage guild. We get a very short description of what the outside of this building looks like, but not enough to make a picture of it. Where it is located and how many stories it has is never discussed. Here something like the following could have been done:

"I make my way to the mage guild, walking past the stalls of the market selling various goods and finally enter the central district through the gate in the inner wall. The contrast to the outer districts is enormous. There are fewer buildings, but they are all bigger, more ostentatious and have guards. Where there were hundreds of people in the market, now I only see a few town guards patrolling the streets, giving me suspicious looks."

In these 4 sentences, I have presented several key facts about the town in question:

- There's a mage guild, a market and at least two different walled-off districts in the city

- The inner district is very different to the outer one, it probably houses the social elite

- There's a town guard

- The mage guild is in the inner district, the market in the outer district

 

Characters

This is hard to judge due to the early stages of the story. Until now, most characters have had a somewhat distinct voice and personality, which is pretty much the only thing I can actually give a rating for. There hasn't been enough time yet to explore any backstories or character growth.

 

Grammar

Mostly ok, though sometimes the tenses get jumbled up a bit.

 

Overall

The story has potential. The author seems to have thought about the world they want to build and the story  they want to tell. The presentation of information could be improved, as well as the choice of what is pertinent information and what is not. A round of edits would probably make it a much better read.

Skylordian Andy
Overall

Reads like someone talking fast.

Reviewed at: Chapter 27 Sacrifices

So I will start by saying this is a pretty good story, but like all things it suffers from issues. 

Certain spoilers will be below.

I think the worldbuilding and the main character is fantastic. He has a clear goal, clear motivations, and is willing to even go so far die or risk future power to save people in the now. My issue though? The flow of the stories overall speed. It's like the equivalent of a person trying to tell you their life story but you cannot interrupt them, they cannot think straight, and they talk so quickly that you have to insert pieces of information yourself into their story and hope to god your correct! 

It's just too fast. Way too fast.

If the author had decided to take things slower and focus more on the world and stuff instead of having the main character be in this mad (but understandable as to why) panic to get things ready and done as fast as possible before the textual feces hits the fan, the author could have easily doubled the chapters they have now and it would be so, so much better to me.

But it's not and the most I can give is 4 stars for how much I have enjoyed everything else.

Author, if your reading this, could you please slow down things a little? Even the shadow king chapters could have been longer and not the race to the murder finish line that I read.

Just slow down! Please!

 

Flashadows
Overall

I've had a lot of lit RPG and this one has a premise that I've seen used before with a twist that's new to me. So far, I love the characters, the game system seems really well thought out, and are all kinds of hints to an intriguing plot. I'll be watching this with great interest.

hazardous1222
Overall

Content is really good, flow needs some work

Reviewed at: Chapter 7 Blue Blood Runs Red

The content and worldbuilding is really good, a few too many infodumps and run on sentences, however, it barely impacted my reading experience. The long passages sent me into a skim and flow experience, which I rather enjoy. So 5 stars for me.

Keep up the good work! 

50 words needed in a review! Write one down, send it aground, 49 words needed in the review...

Confusedscistudent
Overall

Intriguing, good worldbuilding but has its issues

Reviewed at: Chapter 18 Talk and Test

Update: I am editing this at chapter 17. The further I read, the more I am convinced that the author does not know how people speak properly, or at least how they are written extremely simplistically and with incredibly poor grammar. My opinions otherwise has not changed.

While this isn't the best story I've read, it certainly is up there in terms of quality in royal road. The author is great at worldbuilding and the world has a lot of potential in that regard. The character's speech patterns are a bit weird, which is a minor downside.

My main issue with the story is how the author connects and makes the plot flow. Sometimes it feels a bit (very) choppy. I think it's not that big of a deal as far as problems go but it is something that detractcs from the story and should be fixed as the story progresses. There are a few other issues witth how the characters are written and how they behave but I feel those are better explained by reviewees other than I.

Nicholas Pritchett
Overall

So far so good really like the progression of classes and the tiers and BUBBLE MAGE!!! I would love to eat some nails as well! Love how the Mc is avoiding his past class because of his spontaneous warning! Interaction between the lead characters so far is nice and refreshing 

Mommietiger
Overall

I've just started reading this and I'm hooked. The idea of civilization being on a timer intrigues me. That's a very original idea. Can't wait to read more. Being a D&D player really makes this for me an exciting read.  Loving the concept. Twenty years trying to prepare yourself to save the world is a long time to only end up right back at the beginning. Can't wait to see how this plays out.

hye
Overall

So, this story was a pleasant surprise. I love LitRPGs, but I am honestly not a fan of VR stories. But this feels a lot different than other VR stuff I've read before, it feels less like Vaudevillain and more like Log Horizon.

I like the characters well enough, the wide breath of choices and paths for the characters to go on is nice. 

bustedrobot
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

I'm probably biased because I've been looking for a Litrpg Time travel redemption story for ages now. But I can't recomend you enough to give it a try. In fact before this point I haven't ever reviewed a fiction before but I did for this gem. I can tell that this novel has great potential but unfortunately there are only 10 chapters so far, the Protagonis, Jack has a intense drive to become stronger and he has the means to do so. In the way his characeter is written you can tell that he gone through hell while he was weak and is determined not to repeat it. The feel of the story and style is great, the true driving force of the narrative is when he meets old friends in the npcs but they do not remeber him. He knows everything that has been discovered about this world since he has been on it for long. This does not mean that he will not discover new things, he will. He is like a old war veteran who has no one to relate to since evryone who experienced the same are dead. In a way they are everyone he has every known in his long life in gone. Sure he can remake the relationships but they will feel fake. I'm not really a stickler for grammer but I dont see anything wrong. Though that might just because the chapters alreadly have been proofread. The only minor issue I have with this fiction is it's akward starting place, it started right after he has come to terms with his return. No existential crisis or questioning of the meaning of the hardship he has indured (what can I say I like reading that :p) Anyways thankyou for listening to my tedtalk I'm bustedrobot and have a nice day/night! (This review brings me back to writing essays and trying to complete the word limit with extra words)

3BlindMice
Overall

It's got some Emerilia vibes, but the writing is better, IMO. Let's hope he keeps going. Will update to advance review at 50 chapters, or the end of this "getting started" arc, whichever comes first. 

Characters are decent and somewhat relatable, so far the mechanics are a little opaque. The MC is getting past life power creep through effort that is not his own, which is not a good thing in my opinion. If you've ever read Reincarnation of the Strongest Sword God you'll know what I mean. A blessing from a primordial or whatever is not supposed to be first arc material. It just clutters the world introduction. 

We need to know the MCs goals in order to better relate to him. Does he want to save humanity? Does he want to be the strongest badass ever just because? Does he want to rule the realm? Show us by having him make long term vague plans. 

You've got this, decent start, I'd like to see more