A Dungeons and Dragons inspired adventure with a realism-focused spin on gamelit.
Hump grew up believing his master was nothing but an ordinary hedge wizard. However when the old man unexpectedly dies, his book of spells binds to Hump’s soul. Now without a master, Hump sets off to find his place in the world, to discover the secrets of magic, and to understand the Book of Infinite Pages.
Book 1 - Crypt of the Wolf Dragon
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I am a fairly laconic fellow only given to lengthy text when forced ......... I liked this a lot. Great job! Strong characters, well flavored text, very comfortable weaving a tale. Many more words could say the same thing, but rest assured my overall scoring isn't generous, this story at least earned 4.5 stars.
As of time of writing we are 76.000 words in, yet it feels like we're still smack-dab in the middle of the set-up.
I genuinely wonder whether the story started with the inciting incident — the main character taking up the book of his mentor — or whether the inciting incident has yet to happen.
The story feels like a DnD campaign, both in terms of setting and the characters we get introduced to.
Regrettably it lacks the sparks that make campaigns enjoyable for me. An overarching goal, a sense of direction, banter between the characters, the thrill and excitement that fights bring.
To me, it feels like every new chapter is more of the same.
If you asked me to sum up the latest 50.000 words, I'd probably just tell you "Main character and co. go into kobold cave. Something bad happens. He uses [Rockshot]. Out of mana. Retreat."
Perhaps I'll check back in on this novel in a few months, or half a year and be pleasantly surprised. Perhaps then I'll find rhe spark this story has.
But as it stands, looking at all the positive reception this novel is getting — I just don't get it.
As far as characters go, it's mostly good. They feel as if they have proper motives, history, interactions, etc. Rarely they feel like a cardboard cut out, but it is not often.
For style and grammer there is not very much to note. It's neat and coherent. I don't find my attention to wandering because of the word choice or sentence flow.
My biggest gripe is the pacing. Literarily every single chapter ends on a cliff hanger. You could probably miss it if you binge read, but keeping up with it as posted is really aggravating. The author is really good at posting 2 chapters a week but almost nothing happens in them. For instance, in about a month, 8 chapters, and 20,000ish words have happened in 5 or so minutes of story time. It's back to back to back turns of "the mc is about to die" to "the mc survived, and turned the tables". it's the tuesday that never ends.
Maybe you might enjoy it if you like serial dramas, that have the exact same setup, but i can't really recomend it until it is completed.
The characters are likable and real so far. The MC isnt as dumb as a rock. The knights positive/carefree attitude serves as a good contrast to Hump's cautious and cynical attitude. Not much has been written yet, but I like what I have read. This story has alot of potential for ad great classic adventure.
revied at 39 not 30
I agree with most of what the other reviews are praising about it, its a pretty good story but I won't hark on about what most of these comments talk about, instead ill tell you what I didn't like.
the pacing of this story is really slow I'm all for the gritty realistic look at dungeon crawling but we really dint need to spend this long in one dungeon, what I've just read for the last 20 chapters could have been done in 5 and had the same effect.
in fact, i personally don't think this should have been the first adventure the mc and Bud go on at all, our mc is a hedge mage and despite the author saying multiple times that they are deep methodical thinkers he was quick to put his trust in him and somehow they are best friends by the next chapter, one adventure between them meeting and going to the dungeon would have been good to establish trust between them.
the dialough is kind of monotonous for the time we've spent in the single section of the story, yeah it's not bad but without some kind of mix up it got a little stale for me, yeah there was narrative weight and we got to see some decent emotive expressions for the main cast but over 20 chapters of a single dungeon it just got a little boring.
I really think that the first dungeon and the twists that happen in it would have been better served much further in the story especially when the world-building had been less than ideal and honestly makes it seem really forced.
if this story was streamlined a bit and had some tolking-esq exposition on just like anything about the wider world it would be great.
So, to start, I enjoyed the story a lot. It begins well, has interesting characters, and good world building. Not many grammar or spelling issues, so a very good fare here on RR. However once you start getting into the story, the mc and his party go on a super long quest, that culminates in a fight that lasts about 10 chapters. (I didn't actually count them, it could be more or less.)
If I cut a half star for every chapter of this neverending fight, the story would be getting close to .5. that would not be fair though. Neverending fight aside, it's a well written, badly paced story with an interesting world. Still, the pacing has caused me to lose much of my interest. Am gonna have to rate it a 3.
Good enough to look at, but badly in need of a rewrite, and half the fight could be cut for time.
A good story but with too many issues.
Interesting premise, good if cliche characters, horrendous pacing. It feels like a DnD campaign in real time: fifteen minutes of exposition, and then three hours to resolve a fight. It's round after round of the same actions, the MC using all his mana in three spells, then using his last dregs for another one. And another one. A dozen times in a row.
After 20+ chapters of the same skin-of-his-teeth survival, it ends up boring and frustrating.
The writing falls into the cliche category or drama before consitency. The main character uses the last bit of his magic over and over. The knight character tries to throw his life away over and over. The enemies that are behind them sudenlly cut them off again and again. They are in a desperate hurry, but the rescued captives need to sit around doing nothing till the enemy reinforcements arive, again and again. All this repetition is in the first dungeon. The writing is contradictory.
Well written, great characters and engaging plot. Hump (MC) is graduating from the magic equivalent of the school of hard knocks. He stumbles along finding trouble, friendship and mystery in equal portions. Subscribing to this is a no brainer. I hope it runs and runs, time spent with Hump is time well spent.
A well done litrpg. Characters are relatable, have distinctive voices and their power so far stays well under 9000, making the stakes matter, let's hope it keeps that way. Prose is serviceable. Plot is formulaic within genre standards, no great surprises or original twists, but pleasantly competent; serendipity is a thing, but not overly outrageous. Also, kitteh pix :3
Enjoyable pastime, thanks for sharing.