The Butcher of Gadobhra

The Butcher of Gadobhra

by The Walrus King

Life is rough. Jobs are non-existent. And far too many people live in poverty in the real world and can only find work online in VR worlds. And it's getting worse. The old internet is unusable and hacked to pieces. The new system needs AI to run things, but most of them are destroyed. Now everyone is scrambling to get into the GENESIS ENGINE, as it becomes the new global market place

Everyone wants a piece of the new game. The guilds are competing to be the first to find the dungeons and kill the biggest monster. The corporations are claiming land and putting in their online market places. Ozzy and his friends just want a paycheck.

Four friends find they are locked into five year contracts as virtual serfs in a small village, and can't go adventuring at all to gain money and buy their way to freedom. They don't have many choices. They can work as a blacksmith, barmaid and shepherd for all those years....or they can cheat and find ways they can take advantage of the system.

When they give you a mop and not a sword, you have to find the loopholes and change the rules.

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The Walrus King

The Walrus King

The Walrus King

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Table of Contents
200 Chapters
Chapter Name Release Date
Chapter 1: Cheese and Whine ago
Chapter 2: Sponsored by Bludgeon Brew ago
Chapter 3: Welcome to ACME ago
Chapter 4: WALLY ago
Chapter 5: Welcome to Sedgewick ago
Chapter 6: Who let the players in? ago
Chapter 7: A lot of Bull ago
Chapter 8: The Very Hungry Caterpillar ago
Chapter 9: Death Perspective ago
Chapter 10: Small Talk ago
Chapter 11: Whiskey Run ago
Chapter 12: Squirmies and Bananas and Deer! Oh My! ago
Chapter 13: The Great Rabbit Hunt part 1 ago
Chapter 14: The Great Rabbit Hunt, part 2 ago
Chapter 15: It's been a long week. ago
Chapter 16: Corporate Team Building, ACME style. ago
Chapter 17: Bludgeon Brew presents "We had it all wrong." ago
Chapter 18: A knock on the Door. ago
Chapter 19: Loot! ago
Chapter 20: Prelude to Chaos ago
Chapter 21: Cabers in the dark. ago
Chapter 22: Lost and Found ago
Chapter 23: Road to Ruin ago
Chapter 24: "The first thing to understand....." ago
Chapter 25: Life was good today. ago
Chapter 26: Night at the tavern ago
Chapter 27: Late Night at the Tavern ago
Chapter 28: Dark Currents ago
Chapter 29: Earn the Light ago
Chapter 30: Meat ago
Chapter 31: Have we talked to you about your extended warranty? ago
Chapter 32: Drunken mornings and busy afternoons. ago
Chapter 33: Teaching ago
Chapter 34: Barbeque and Loot ago
Chapter 35: Naps and Rats ago
Chapter 36: Dungeon! part 1 ago
Chapter 37: Dungeon part 2 ago
Chapter 38: Drinking and Dowries ago
Chapter 39: Adventures in bartending. ago
Chapter 40: Negotiations ago
Chapter 41: Sir Timothy's Big Adventure ago
Chapter 42: Do try to keep up. ago
Chapter 43: Back in the saddle ago
Chapter 44: Welcome Home ago
Chapter 45: Bacon? ago
Chapter 46: Problems ago
Chapter 47: New hats and lost satchels. ago
Chapter 48: Harmony ago
Chapter 49: New friends. ago
Chapter 50: Learning to Ride ago
Chapter 51: A dark and stormy night ago
Chapter 52: One on the way ago
Chapter 53: Partings ago
Chapter 54: Mixing it up ago
Chapter 55: The Price of Tomatoes ago
Chapter 56: Hot and Sweet ago
Chapter 57: Weeds ago
Chapter 58: Awakening ago
Chapter 59: War and Pieces ago
Chapter 60: Back on his feet. ago
Chapter 61: Slow day ago
Chapter 62: Options ago
Chapter 63: Designing for Dungeoning ago
Chapter 64: Cheese? ago
Chapter 64.1 Falconer ago
Chapter 64.2: The General ago
Chapter 65: Dungeons Dark and not-so-Perilous ago
Chapter 66: Probably-Poisoned Pie ago
Chapter 67: The day before. ago
Chapter 68: Weasel Attack! ago
Chapter 69.1 :Dawn of War part 1 ago
Chapter 69.2: Dawn of War part 2 ago
Chapter 69.3: Dawn of War part 3 ago
Chapter 69.4: Dawn of War part 4 ago
Chapter: 70 Knives in the back ago
Chapter 71: Better than muffins. ago
Chapter 72: First Strike! ago
Chapter 73: The Battle for the Tavern ago
Chapter 74: A Death in the Family ago
Chapter 74.1: Mourning part 1 ago
Chapter 74.2: Mourning part 2 ago
Chapter 74.3 Mourning part 3 ago
Chapter 74.4 Mourning ago
Chapter 75: Walking off a cliff. ago
Chapter 76: The rise of Fearless Leader ago
Chapter 77: Surrender ago
Chapter 78: Sir Timothy in Spiderland ago
Chapter 79: Reborn in a new world with my oblivious barbecuing boyfriend part 1 ago
Chapter 80: The Butcher of Sedgewick ago
Chapter 81: Suzette, the Lonely Barmaid ago
Chapter 82: Repentence ago
Chapter 83: Chapter: Digging In ago
Chapter 84: The Friendly Local Courier ago
Chapter 85: The Simple Shepherd ago
Chapter 86: Leroy ago
Chapter 87: Bunny Hunting ago
Chapter 88: Bottoms Up! ago
Chapter 89: Stick, Stone, Clouds ago
Chapter 90: Definitely not part of the plan ago
Chapter 91: A Sticky Wicket ago
Chapter 92: Victory ago
Chapter 93: A town in peril, and hope jogs to the rescue! ago
Chapter 94: Bigger than The Big Rat ago
Chapter 95: The Charge of the Workers Brigade ago
Chapter 96: War Council ago
Chapter 97: Ubermaus Snack Time ago
Chapter 98: The Horde Attacks! ago
Chapter 99: War's End ago
Chapter 100: Paladins to the rescue! ago
Chapter 101: Accounting ago
Chapter 102: The Gangs all Here ago
103: Loot while you can. ago
104: Collection Day ago
Chapter 105: No, you can't hit him! ago
Chapter 106: Opening statements ago
Chapter 107: Heavy Reading ago
Chapter 108: Friends of the Court ago
Chapter 109: Guile and Brute Force ago
Chapter 110: Baron of Gadobhra ago
Chapter 111: The Hunter ago
Chapter 112: Wrapping things up. ago
Chapter 113: Legendary Loot! ago
Chapter 114: Repairs ago
Chapter 115: Dust and noise. ago
Chapter 116: Bedtime for Bonzo ago
Chapter 117: The Rest of it ago
Chapter 118: Visitors from afar. ago
Chapter 119: The Tax man comes calling ago
Chapter 120: Deals and Investigations ago
Chapter 121: Planning Session ago
Chapter 122: Cargo and Escargo ago
Chapter 123: Civic Duty ago
Chapter 124: During a quiet moment. ago
Chapter 125: Squirrels and Bunnies and Barrows, oh my! ago
Chapter 126: One for all, and all for one. ago
Chapter 127: Buying Tenure ago
Chapter 128: Thunderpunks ago
Chapter 129: The Butcher of Gadobhra ago
Chapter 130: Mud Wrestling ago
Chapter 131: A Hard Days Slaughter ago
Chapter 132: Apprentice Butcher ago
Chapter 133: Breakfast ago
Chapter 134: Minor Minion Misunderstanding ago
Chapter 135: A Rising Power is recognized! ago
Chapter 136: At the mercy of the Pit Master! ago
Chapter 137: More visitors from afar ago
Chapter 138: The Assistant Butchers of Sedgewick ago
Chapter 139: Bears, Boars, and Fursnakes ago
Chapter 140: Bunnies, and Cows, and Hell-Pigs, oh MY! ago
Chapter 141: Some Pig! ago
Chapter 142: Workers with benefits. ago
Chapter 143: Bunny Girls and Wood Sprites ago
Chapter 144: Things heat up ago
Chapter 145: Fool's Gold ago
Chapter 146: Lost Lambs ago
Chapter 147: The Death of Roland, and his Journey Home ago
Interlude: Town Building Points ago
Chapter 148: Bacon ago
Chapter 149: Tall Timber ago
Chapter 150: War of the Oaks ago
Chapter 151: Expansion and Negotiation ago
Chapter 152: Reunion ago
Chapter 153: No plan survives contact with the enemy. ago
Chapter 154: A Short, Victorious War ago
Chapter 155: My oblivious boyfriend in another world got bitten by a radioactive cow. ago
Chapter 156: Meals and Deals ago
Chapter 157: Swift travel and a quick return ago
Chapter 158: Wolves in the Night ago
Chapter 159: Delving Deep ago
Chapter 160: McTeeth on the Job ago
Chapter 161: Visitor from the Stars ago
Chapter 162: When things go 'WrongjustWrong' ago
Chapter 163: When you're hot, your HOT! ago
Chapter 164: Burning Ring of Fire! ago
Chapter 165: Swifter Returns ago
Chapter 166: After the Fire ago
Chapter 167: Chicken and Dumplings? ago
Chapter 168: Don't go in the Basements! ago
Chapter 169: Dealing with Dryads ago
Chapter 170: Town Planning ago
Chapter 171: The second meeting ago
Chapter 172: Lord Hound ago
Chapter 173: Changes ago
Chapter 174: Beginning College ago
Chapter 175: Of Tree and Unicorns, and of Badgers who should be wary of Hounds bearing gold. ago
Chapter 176: Getting her hands dirty ago
Chapter 177: Harsh Truths ago
Chapter 178 Beasts and Promises ago
Chapter 179: Makeovers and Menageries ago
Chapter 180: Dungeon Prep ago
Chapter 181: Regrouping ago
Chapter 182: The Bloody Baron ago
Chapter 183: Brewing Sunshine ago
Chapter 184: Diplomacy ago
Chapter 185: Talking with Joe ago
Chapter 186: Tavern Politics ago
Chapter 187: Pinching Penny Pinchers ago
Chapter 188: Normal is Boring ago
Chapter 189: Welcome to the Smoke ago
Chapter 190: Oink takes a nap. ago

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DressedUpToParty
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

Where to start? Let's start with the good.

The Good

The idea takes well-trodden ground (vrmmo litrpg) and adds its own unique spin, with an anti-capitalist 'workers rise up' approach to its protagonists. Corporations are evil and keep their workers penned in with heinous contracts. Enter a VRMMO administrated by a benevolent AI, and... Well, I won't spoil it. It's good enough to keep you interested and there is mercifully little 'out of game' content, which is the bane of many of these stories.

The characters have interesting abilities and paths, their classes are not the usual dross in vrmmo litrpgs (no fire mages or spellswords, yet), and the playfulness is appropriate, with a nice lack of snark, or at least an appropriate amount relative to other stories.

Outside of the game mechanics, the characters are relatively distinct, with a clearly original past as 'npcs' and laborers in vr dramas and other games, giving them a unique sort of world-weary vrmmo employee vibe that is new to me. They enter this world, immediately discover some unique and interesting things that nobody else in the game world has (not a shock, but the type of thing that makes these stories so juicy). They settle into the village their contracted to work in, and then all sorts of whacky shenanigans ensue.

Which leads me to my first gripe

The Bad

Right about the time when the war breaks out the story goes from a well contained semi-slice of life story about this village and the contract worker inhabitants into a voluminous multicharacter smorgasbord of conflicting viewpoints and omniscient character hoppings that quickly leaves behind the compelling and somewhat charming pov's of our four protagonists in favor of trying to cram every possible strand of narrative into the same storyline. I skipped around a bit, and to my surprise (and disappointment) I was able to pick up a chapter or half a chapter later with basically no interruption in the story. A lot of the viewpoints aren't necessarily superflous, but they feel sort of like stat padding. 

Maybe this could have been alleviated by addressing my next gripe: the grammar and overall writing style. There are a lot of viewpoints, and it's never quite clear whose head we're currently inhabiting, or worse, whose thoughts we're currently reading. Sometimes the internal viewpoint switches so fast you attribute a paragraph to one character, only to realize belatedly that we've switched into someone elses brain. This is disorienting, and when the scope abruptly expands into a much larger cast of characters in the war, it becomes unpleasant to follow. 

like the main cast of four, so why are we spending so much time away from them? Chapter after chapter we get hints of interesting progression for our protagonists, only to follow some errant strand that needs to be resolved elsewhere that could have been summarized in a sentence or two. Maybe if the payoff were greater for these excursions? Alas, some of the bad guys are so convoluted that my reward is in skipping their sections entirely.

Even the four main viewpoints get lost in the competition for screen time - occasionally you will realize that we haven't seen one of the main four in a while, and the absence is jarring because you wonder what it is about these secondary and tertiary viewpoints that couldn't be discovered through the lens of one of the main characters. Maybe if we were limited to strictly four points of view the expansive turn the story has taken would feel less chaotic and unmanageable.

The Summary

There is something good here, in the bones of the story. Unfortunately, much of the time (a lot more as the story goes on) the bones are hidden away under a layer of misdirection, tertiary viewpoints and general distance that I'm more and more unwilling to dig through for the gems. 

In many ways, this is the most frustrating kind of story to find, one I want to binge the whole night instead of going to bed. And yet. With each passing chapter I ask myself - is this worth another hour awake? With a little conciseness and editing, it will be.

Meritonus
Overall

I'm conflicted but generally like the story

Reviewed at: Chapter 133: Breakfast

When you read this review keep in mind that I normally really dislike VRMMO stories for several reasons (which are not important), tend to dislike more than two POV and am not that great with reading in-between the lines.

So why did I pic this story up? Easy answer it was a recommendation in the Delve discord and it sounded interesting.

Negatives (the good stuff comes further down):

And, especially initially I had barely any issues besides some minor style or punctuation issues (which don't influence this rating as this is a hobbyist site).

Sadly this got worse as the story went on. There are probably 5 or more extra quotation marks in every chapter which sometimes makes reading a bit confusing, but honestly, this is only a minor gripe in my book. There might be a word missing once in a while but that happens.

However, that isn't a big deal for me and most people would probably be barely bothered by this since the story is engaging.

The real issue I have is twofold. Time, or order of chapters is not necessarily how stuff happens in the story. What I mean by that is that we go from getting chapter x at time y to chapter x+1 at time y-10 days. I personally don't like that. I like to get information when it happens and this is something other readers should be aware of when reading.

Now, this is not really a deal breaker for most people, me neither, but it was annoying.

The next and worst part about this story is the scope (DressedUpToParty mentioned this as well). Character PoV shifts and the cast size is awful and why I cannot give this story a better rating even though I enjoyed a lot of it. There are PoV shifts within paragraphs, between paragraphs and almost all of the time it is not indicated. Whether this is a narrative tool the author consciously uses or something they do by accident, it requires addressing. 

The cast size is honestly quite formidable, which is something I tend to not like, but don't mind as much here. What I do not like however is nicknames and such. I already struggle with a cast of 15 or so people, if all of them suddenly have like 3 names each, that becomes even more difficult. I do see why this is the case, to indicate familiarity and such but for me it took away from the reading enjoyability.

Another minor gripe I have is that skill names and system stuff is kind of ignored by the characters (this is probably not entirely correct)  and inconsistent

The good parts:

The cast is quite likable and competent, i like the setting and the world. The system seems fun too and I like a good struggle of proletariat vs bourgeoisie/evil corpse where hopefully the proletariat comes out on top. The worldbuilding for the most part seems pretty cool and suffers a lot less from the usual consequences of a VRMMO setting.

Unmaker
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

Warning: This review has some minor, general spoilers. Nothing specific and nothing you don’t find out in a few chapters anyway, but please don’t read if you hate all spoilers.

In a corporate dystopia future, menial workers are just assets to be used up and tossed aside. Even more so if the menial workers are hired to work in a virtual reality RPG as basic labor. Unfortunately for the corporations’ way of thinking, Ozzy and his friends are far more competent than expected and have at least one powerful hidden ally. Plus, the corporation they now work for has outsmarted itself – the game the workers are placed in is balanced so when the corporation tried to make brainwashed grunts with no offensive skills, the workers received some well-hidden advantages included in the package. PCs and NPCs alike start learning some things the hard way: don’t insult the barmaid, shepherd powers are OP, the courier has friends in unexpected places, and don’t ever, ever mess with the butcher.

Blurb aside, this story has a lot of good points: easily readable general grammar and sentence and paragraph structure; a mix of short-term and longer-term plots; a good blend of drama and humor (no real romance so far though); smooth pacing; significant plot interactions; etc. The one thing that really makes the story is the characterization. I usually don’t like multiple point-of-view stories, but this one pulls it off very well. Every main character is given enough time and attention onscreen to feel like a real, unique person – there are no two-dimensional characters except for a few that are clearly comic relief. Even the villains have their own motivations and characterization.

My one minor gripe is that the framing story, which is set in the base reality of the world, seems to be overly complex and dramatic. If this irritates you as it does me, just ignore it for the short amount of time it takes to get to the in-game portion of the story. The author claims there is a reason for the framing story, but only hints have shown up in the in-game story so far. In any case, that’s one minor gripe compared to a lot of positives, so the story is well worth the read.

IfIOnlyHadABrain
Overall

This story isn't a fast burn to power but more of a slowly smoked BBQ. 

It's interesting how the main character/s use loopholes and oversights in what should be a crippled class to gain advantages. I found how the characters tweak their jobs skills for combat and using them in unconventional ways interesting.

 

Over all it is well written, and there is just enough slice of life so the characters don't run around putting out fire after fire with no break in between. The relationship between the main character and his deuteranonists is natural. The side chapters don't get in the way much and sometime resolve question I had. I think the main character could be a little more aggressive with the brutal side of his occupation but that's just my taste.

Any mistakes were either taken care of before I got to them or were small enough that I didn't notice. Another pro, which doesn't have to do with the story, is there is enough of a chapter bank that you can binge it for a few days without hitting the last chapter right as you were getting into it. 

Mr Me
Overall

I'm currently binging this story, and having a lot of fun with it.  The protagonists have a lot of flavor, the comedy is solid, and it's still going strong 150 chapters in.  If you are looking for a comedy VRMMO, I'd say this is one of the best on the site.

JohnnySunshine
Overall

Distopian reality which has resulted in most people working and basically living online.  A mash up of Dakota Krout Ritualisr series meets Drew Hayes NPC series.  Story mostly follows the day adventures of a skilled group of gamers who have signed up as contact workers to work for a corporation online.  The corporation makes an attempt to nerf the contract workers so they are unable to adventure effectively to buyout there contacts early.  The AI running everything has left loopholes that can be used so the contract workers are able to play the game.  Overall a very fun read.

Doublemans
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

Captivating read! I seiously cannot get enough!

Reviewed at: Chapter 67: The day before.

Overall, this is a creative, well-designed VRMMO lit-rpg with a well-thought-out setting, and characters that provide nice contrast to each other, and create a sort-of rag-tag take on a traditional adventuring party. The attention to detail is apparent, and the author goes out of their way to bring the reader along for the ride as the characters discover more and more of the game world. I've been reading stories here for 6 years, and made an account to write this review. This story is great and the author should feel proud of their hard work.

Style: The detailed game system, well-thought-out world, with realistic characters that make logical decisions. Smooth perspective shifts between chapters.

Grammar: The grammar is essentially perfect, with small editing errors that occasional slip through. Perhaps 1-2 small errors at most every few chapters.

Story score: Creative take on corporatized VRMMO with extreme system personalization to each character and with essentially infinite freedom for creative expression for the player. Even the mobs have goals and lives, and each NPC recieves system rewards!

Character score: The characters are great, with distinctive personalities. The rag-tag creation of a humorous adventuring party is great.

Give this story a read, it will not disappoint!

 

IsTiredAndNeedsToPoop
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

Reviewed at chapter 44.

So on the surface this looks like a standard VR-game experience as seen before on RR. However a lot of small things come together to make this story more enjoyable and suffer less of the complaints I have with most other VR stories.

[World building] Excellent.

First the big surprise: the VR-game imagined by the author in this story is actually something that you can imagine to be fun, even if the main characters are essentially paid support / crafter classes who only get to play when they sneak off. The AI NPC's and bad-guys are all intelligent, have personality and goals of their own which really helps to make the world feel real and alive.

[Characters] Multiple main characters working together. They are all likeable, and distinct enough to remember them. This makes this an easy to read story without any jarring POV shifts that less proficient authors might introduce.

It also uses a nice blend of not over the top slapstick, humour and camaraderie to give a nice casual atmosphere for our main characters to enjoy, while poking fun at the cut-throat hard-core raid guild / paid to win crowd as side characters.

[Style and grammar] Very easy to read, simple straightforward language. Reads as native English, and very little grammar errors.

Recommended even for those like me who are typically hesitant to try VR-stories.

Crakednut69
Overall

An interesting take on a commonly used setting

Reviewed at: Chapter 10: Small Talk

Style

I have seen a lot of stories with the game lit rpg system and world but this one stands out quite a bit with its detailed system and characters, problems that many lit rpgs face and makes me lose interest. The world building is really well done and it's easy to imagine the world and the characters.

Characters 

From what I've read all the characters feels realistic and has some essence to them and are introduced properly.

Grammar- I haven't spotted much grammar mistakes but the length of the paras used could definitely be shortened as reading long paras can be exhausting.

Overall I feel like this is a well written book with amazing world building and life like characters. I feel like there is a lot of ways this book could branch out and this is definitely a story you check especially if you're a fan of lit rpgs.....

 

scost
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

Adventures in a corporatized VRMMO

Reviewed at: Chapter 11: Whiskey Run

This is a really interesting take on the VRMMO genre that has a unique focus on corporatization. The background and world building are especially interesting and well implemented. 

The style is probably the strongest element early on. The first few chapters have wonderful framing devices in both the character dialogue introducing the plot and excerpts from in-world documents that introduce the history. Once the story progresses to inside the game, the style becomes a little shakier, but totally servicable. The key problem being a tendancy to head-hop a little, especially when characters with distinctive voices enter the scene (Billy). Similar to this, perspectives shift without proper signposting and could benefit from paragraph breaks to signal different locations or viewpoints. Apart from this, the story is delivered in a tone that works great with the narrative but also has some levity to it.

The grammar is almost totally without issue. the only problems were slight mistakes in dialogue punctuation - but who even cares about that?

The story has an interesting set up in the corporatized VRMMO. The main actions of the story seem to be fairly standard for the genre, with a focus on characters levelling up and uncovering secrets in the game system. The structure of the corporate controlled village is very interesting though and gives the story and great structure.

The characters are currently serviceable but without exceptionally distinct voices. Billy, the manager of the village, has the most distinct character and makes his scenes much more engaging. I would like to see a bit more of a distinct voice and character from the main cast. But at the same time, they are totally servicable.

Overall, a pretty cool story with a really engageing setup and places to go.