- Sexual Content
In a broken world, once ruled by almighty Mage Kings, the chosen of the Gods are all that hold against total annihilation.
Harald Horste, a naïve young man, humiliated, broken, and penniless, inadvertently changes his fate with a single act of spite, finding himself drawn into a life of conflict. Demon cultists, savage monsters, entities of the abyss, and more threaten the lands of men from the remnants of a long dead empire. For Harald, beloved of the goddess of misfortune to survive them, he must attend the academy of Ashmere, while nursing the pain of a lifetime of mistreatment.
Join him in his struggle amongst scheming nobles, undead horrors, and the ever lurking threat of the Ruinlands.
NOTE: This story is for the April national writing month contest and it is a Rough Draft! I appreciate all feedback, whether it be for typos, plot, pacing, and so forth. It has some light sexual content. It contains no Harem or Murder Hobo MC.
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The mc is physically altered early in the story, in an incredibly drastic yet technically positive way. The stories handling of the dissonance created by a sudden, nonconsentual, yet positive change to the body and the disphoria created by that is great, even if the invetiable breakdown is delayed by everything else the char must do to not die. I really hope that we'll get a breakdown when he get's some time off.
Very well written story, grammar could use some work and is awkward in some places. This is to be expected in a story that's being written so quickly. The connotation that the description portrays does not fit the story at all. Instead of a character who has been poorly treated that suddenly gets power and become a jerk he uses the fact that he knows what it's like to be on the outside to treat people well.
Honestly one of the best introductions. We catch the protagonist at the end of a perilous journey finding that it was meaningless. In his sorrow he almost commits suicide by godstone, yadayada. The issues begin with the academy arc. For one, he needlessly makes powerful enemies without taking any precautions. The timeskips where harald suddenly has a new friend are weird, makes the story feel rushed. Most importantly, it is assumed that it is a pre-industrial fantasy world, yet the protagonist has none of the ignorance we would expect. It's understandable he is a merchant's son and has some varied experience, but there has to be a limit somewhere. Like this isn't a self-insert dude with modern morals, this is some merchant's son from a backwater village. So far, it's kind of just a rush through the typical motions of training, face slapping, slice of life, etc. It would do a lot better if we could understand haralds deeper thoughts, take more time on smaller things, rather than rush through the litrpg academy 101. Exactly like how the author did in the intro.
A really nice new take in the journey from crap to awesome.
The "magic system" is a really good mix of old concepts and new ideas, mixing standard LiRPG, gods and sorcery.
The main character is somewhat relatable and you really feel his pain at the start. The secondary characters are developed nicely, flow together with the protagonist and are different from each other.
My only two caveats with the story are:
I think the magic system could be explained further, I really like that the protagonist uses Hexes because is not normally something that you see but in the history feels undeveloped, underused and somewhat unexplained. Part of that can be attributed to the protagonist being new to this whole world of powers.
The other one is that I feel that the story is progressing too fast.
I'm writing the review at chapter 37 and the protagonist is already involved in a country-ending conspiracy.
Haven't found anything glaringly unlikeable about the novel, MC seems okay, the "System" elements looks rather unique ( at least its not the typical one you'd expect) by the snippets we got from it.
The overall theme had me a little worried, could've easily slipped into an edgy wish fufillment mess but it seems to be well handled (So far). The MC doesn't seem to be the type to make the boons he got go straight into the weird horny fetish fufillement zone.
MC is ugly and unwanted and gets chosen by the goddess of curses and the unwanted, thus getting a pantydropping Male MC transformation and edgy eye curse magiks.
Overall he seems clearheaded and believable about it and isn't an infinite hornymachine like you'd expect in a storyline with these elements.
I will be keeping an eye on this one, its well written, grammar is good, pacing feels fine, the few characters that got screentime so far didn't raise any flags and dont seem to be 2D cardboard cuttouts and no instances of The Big Stupid.
Give it a try, to the point I've made this review its surprisingly good, for a story that just screamed edgy wish fuffilment if you went by the common denominations of its elements.
Most of the earlier chapters have poor pacing. Focusing too much on the moment to moment drudgery and degrading the plot for the lack of time lapses. Makes the early chapters feel like a slice of life harem build up. I like that, but it wasn't really what was advertised and even those need good pacing.
The story is very YA. I prefer a more adult-oriented plot. He's just sixteen and it shows the most of the early chapters.
The combat, syntax, and system itself are excellent. The crafting and magic are mostly shallow and little explored. You need to do some basic research on crafts that will help you make more interesting segments there. Look into chemistry basics and add magic. Watch crafting videos on YouTube. Your spells, hexes, curses, alchemy, enchanting, blacksmithing, leatherworking, textiles, and so on are not very good. His innate talents are great. The system feels like a watered-down D&D warlock. Minus all their best stuff. Like hexblade or eldritch blast. The coolest three things he's done is the familiar, the poleaxe that expands out like the monkey king's staff from some wooden wrist thing, and his clothes. There's however a lot there that you could do to make it more interesting. Like a metal and leather harness enchanted with decent curses and hexes that his clothing just wraps up and incorporates. Made to look like that fancy doublet he wore. The familiar? He didn't start using it till the late chapters. And his weapon? Why did he make a dumb joke goblet and not enchant that?
Aside from that there are a number of minor continuity issues. Like at one point you said Reynold was only 5'9, but the next saying he was taller than the guy he stomped on. Or the polearm level? Things like that.
Don't let the cover and synopsis fool you. You can only get the true experience by reading it. Honestly, this novel is just a gem to read. Although not everyone will like it, if you enjoy magic schools and underdog main characters, you are already halfway there.
The first thing that sticks out to me in this novel is my suspension of disbelief. When I started, I was confused as well as rolling my eyes. I really didn't want to read this, only wanting to give it a cursory glance to see if it was good. But I stuck with it, and after a few paragraphs, I found myself grounded in the scene with things starting to make sense. Although I still wasn't enjoying myself, I wanted to reach a low point before dropping it, and all I can say is that I'm grateful I didn't.
After that point, when everything becomes grounded in the scene and we can see things happening from start to finish, it just becomes a real treat to follow the mc. There's a lot of humour, emotions, and changes within the first few chapters, but I can only say that they were all such a treat that whenever I read this novel now that I'm fully immersed.
A lot of novels I will read and just zone in and out when a really long part just drones on and on and on and on and on, or question the things I'm reading and even compare them to my own ideas. With this novel? I just sit back and enjoy everything on the page.
Past that, everything else is just dandy. Good enemies, good friends, and complicated romance that tests the mc's morals, convictions, and understanding of himself and the world. It's all just a joy to go through one step at a time.
And this is just the nitty-gritty of the storytelling and characters. Now let me tell you about the magic system and the System itself. I never really entertained the idea of curses, hexes, and charms, but this novel just does them so flawlessly so far. Every ability is so cool and interesting so far, and even the reason why they are so cool is obvious.
As Brandon Sanderson said in his writing lectures, there are two key details for making a cool superpower. The first is that the power has to be used to solve problems in an interesting way that is satisfying to the reader, and the second is that the flaws of the power are more interesting than the power itself.
For both of these instances, all of the Mc's hexes and curses have stringent requirements, costs, and conditions to use, but the pay off if successful can be immensely high in the right situations. These abilities not only have flaws, but the author is basically forcing themselves to make the mc solve things in interesting ways.
Compared to most novels that are just amateurish garbage, this bad boy is an absolute gem.
I am really enjoying this story! I just caught up to the Ch 37 and was so sad there was not more. The grammer and writing are good, only the occasional small problem which does not detract from the story at all.
It is a new story and despite using the many standard LitRPG mainstays, skills/levels/stats, they are presented in a fresh new way. The unique aspects that the author added to their system grabs the attention and gives those standard pieces a new exciting flair.
The character has a unique hook to their personality and history that I am excited to see explored. I'm very much enjoying Harold at this point and can't wait to see more of him and how he grows as a person.
The only reason I am withholding the final star is that as of now we are still waiting to see the supporting characters fleshed out. As of now we've been hit hard and heavy with a lot of them and given little to no depth. However it is early in the story and I imagine the more is released the more we will learn about them. I will be happy to pump up that last star when we see that.
Enough review reading though. Anyone who made it this far should go read!
In essence, this novel has perfect scores in grammar, style and I suppose would building although it's early in the world truly hasn't been explored since this current arc is more focused on interpersonal- relationships between characters. However, the one arc that turns me off from this story is the story arc between the opening arc and the school arc. It's so forced upon coincidences that if one thing was misplaced the characters would not meet in that fashion. And apparently love and attraction is based on 7-year-old level love. Oh no, he is attractive instant marriage and love..... I know this happens in adulthood but I expected more since I don't the main character suffered it's just truly strange. It's like any maturity that was seen from the mc is gone after he receives powers. It is a rough draft from what the author is constantly saying but that arc just...
I'm not really big into reviews, sharing my views or opinions on things, unless there is something drastically wrong, bad, or messed up with what I am reading.....
This series is happily one of the exceptions, I have been wonderfully pleased with and surprised with how well the story is put together, how good the characters are, and how engaging the story is.
There are a few minor issues, but it's mainly in my personal views on how people should act when confronted, or how they should compose themselves. (IE: Staying in contact with people, accepting peoples kindness, and stomping on people who try and hurt me or mine.) The main char is a damaged kid who has had a lot of issues and I can understand how he feels the way he does. But I wish he was a little more ruthless, a little less accepting of the abuse that people have thrown on him since he started school, and at the same time I wish that he would be a little softer with Elaine. To me she only tried to do what was right for him the entire time, from when she gave him some gold, all the way to where she wants the MC to court her. She's probably the nicest person in the whole story at the moment.
As for the things I enjoy. I like that the staff at school aren't acting like so many teachers in other stories do, where they abuse the student because he isn't "good" enough. I like the abilities that the MC is being offered, there are few stories I have read that the MC was in a support class and I enjoyed the story. I also like how the MC's familiar is a little bit of an asshole, that keeps me laughing. But the best thing I see is that the MC isn't one of those nothing char who gets power and is suddenly on top of the world the strongest everywhere with girls dropping panties, and guys wanting to get cucked by him.
Over all I'd recommend you give the story a read.
For the author. I just want to say keep up the good writing. And if possible, write the chapters a little longer I read through them WAY to fast at the moment. ))) That was the only reason I cut off half a star. :)