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  • Eden's Gate: The Arena

  • A LitRPG Adventure, Book 4
  • By: Edward Brody
  • Narrated by: Pavi Proczko
  • Length: 11 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,175
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,116
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,112

When Gunnar learns the king of Highcastle will grant an audience to anyone who wins an arena championship, he decides to enter the competition as a gladiator. If he can earn a meeting with the ailing king and persuade him to stop Dryden before his dragon flies, he can save Edgewood and countless lives. He'll also get his name posted in every arena, which could lead Rachel one step closer to finding him. Does Gunnar have what it takes to become a champion, or has he bitten off more than he can chew?

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Why is the MC stupid?

  • By Aaron on 07-17-18

Disappointing.

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-02-19

I will count this as my review for the entire series.

*This review is entirely my own opinion and you have a right to ignore, disregard, or disagree with it*

TL;DR : This first book is okay and then it drops off quickly. The main character never learns from the consequences and is basically dragged along for the entire story. He doesn't make decisions, he only reacts to the plot, in stupid ways mind you. Do not read this series. If you want to read good Litrpg's read "The Land", "The Completionist Chronicles", "Life Reset", and my personal favorite "Everybody Loves Large Chests" (If you can like dark satire).

The first book was interesting, it had the typical setting of a character being stuck in a game but was interesting nonetheless. I found his motivations to find his "girlfriend" to be half-hearted as we were only given a few lines about her. We didn't have enough time to get attached to her so I really couldn't care less. Anyway, I like the premise of him realizing its not a game anymore and that there are consequences for his actions.

The second book was exciting that he did these extraordinary feats. However, the main character makes several assumptions and dumb decisions that wouldn't be made by a gamer. This continues throughout the series.

The third book was terrible. I liked how to touched on the darker aspects of the game and it could have been done really well. If not for my hatred of the main character by this point. He is utterly stupid, he falls for the dumbest traps, cannot read a situation, makes absurd false assumptions, never thinks ahead even for a moment, and only ever reacts to what happens to him. He gets dragged along for this huge quest that he didn't even want to partake in. He doesn't have the wits to realize whats happening to him or around him unless it is fucking spelled out word for word. No gamer acts like this.

The fourth book, he continues to make mistakes. He now has this odd character progression where he becomes this savage after being in the sands, but also thinks he is kind. Kind of like saying "He tortures people? I would never do such a thing" and then continues to do so. He doesn't think ahead in his battles, seems to keep getting caught in this limbo of romance, and ignores blatant clues that a child would pick up on.

The fifth book is more of the same only I hate Gunner even more as he doesn't seem to have any real substance to him. He is a prop that the author drags around. It is like a toddler attaching a crayon to a string and then trying to draw a picture only by running around holding the end of the string. The main character is not a person, he is a tool, and a bad one at that.

This whole series feels like it was written by a college fratboy who wanted to try to fit in with geeks. He thinks gamer lingo are things like "For shizzle my nizzle". He thinks the main character and Aaron would actually get along. Gunner is supposed to be a recluse gamer shut-in, yet somehow befriends Aaron who talks about chicks like their objects. All of the love interests in the books are "Damn, she is drop dead gorgeous" or "She has this perfect hourglass frame", never once did he actually inquire about who they were behind their looks, yet these women somehow fall for him? Fuck off.

The narrator is okay, he did a decent job but he wasn't amazing in any way. Many of his voice were the same and he added little to no inflections or emotions in his acting.

Concluding.... Don't bother with the series. Read the TL;DR for better Litrpg series. This series certainly isn't worth the money and I wouldn't bother spending your credits either. Taking the time to read these has actually hurt my heart and I want my time back.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Eden's Gate: The Sands

  • A LitRPG Adventure, Book 3
  • By: Edward Brody
  • Narrated by: Pavi Proczko
  • Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,485
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,392
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,389

With Unity formed, Gunnar feels like he's created a family like he's never had before. All that's left is to grow in strength, continue building in Edgewood, and maybe earn a little affection from Princess Adeelee. Nothing can tear him away from his friends and newly founded guild. Or can it? Gunnar still has a lot to learn about his massive, new world. Deception can come when you least expect it, and in Eden's Gate, sometimes you can lose control of your own fate.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Sherlock (The Potato) Holmes

  • By David on 01-13-18

Ugh.

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-28-19

How could he not know where he was after he was transported, considering the sand? Why would he just attack monsters without thinking about the consequences? Did he really think that just because he was saved in a hostile environment, that those people wouldn't also be hostile? The main character is doesn't seem to be able to piece evidence together. Despite being a "pro-gamer", he doesn't act like one.

The whole excursion seemed a bit too much. I like the idea of the main character being roped into the plot whether he likes it or not. However, I do not like that the main character seems to just be dragged along nearly the entire time. There are very few times where he thinks before he acts and never plans things out. He always Reacts instead of being prepared.

I would have enjoyed more base building and progression on his side of the world. I like that there is an ever-looming threat, but that could have been glossed over or hinted at rather than dedicating nearly an entire book towards. It does give history to future encounters but I don't expect he will be in that situation for at least a few more books.

Overall, this book was a grueling addition that touched on the darker aspects of the "game". It could have been done a lot better but it did have redeeming aspects and I am trusting the author will use all this to fuel the plot in the next books. I really hope that the main character gains some more wit.

  • Eden's Gate: The Reborn

  • A LitRPG Adventure, Book 1
  • By: Edward Brody
  • Narrated by: Pavi Proczko
  • Length: 10 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,339
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,199
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,193

When Gunnar Long is transported into the first fully-immersive virtual MMORPG, he finds himself in a new world filled with magic, mystery, and adventure. No more 9-to-5 job. No more studio apartment. No more reality TV. Finally, he's in a place where he can call home, a place with people he can call friends. But as more people want to trade their real world lives to get inside Eden's Gate, the government of the outside world wants the "game" shut down at all costs.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A great LITRPG series starter

  • By Ray Johnson on 12-27-18

Great!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-23-19

How can he loot his pockets when the guy is only wearing a loincloth?

Anyway, the story itself seems a bit half baked. It is classic, elves are beautiful nature dwellers, goblins and orcs are dumb monsters, players get trapped in the game. Yet the another main character who is a shut in gamer who basically gets every gamer's wish granted wants to desperately escape. It doesn't make sense to me. His motivations of trying to find his girlfriend seem really shallow. He keeps going on about finding her on a planet 10 times the size of earth with no gps, tracking system, or communication. Plus she only played about a ten minute part where we barely got to know her. As the reader, I couldn't really give two shites about her as a character.

Chapter 33 pissed me off. He was so close to throwing it away. The story would have been so much better if he let go.

The story itself is a good story. Gunner has a clear fears and flaws. He can realizes his faults and choose to make different decisions in the future. There is clear progression and interesting obstacles to overcome.

I recommend this book, even if there are parts I don't like and could be better, it is a quality Litrpg.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Limitless Lands, Book 2: Conquest (A LitRPG Adventure)

  • By: Dean Henegar
  • Narrated by: Jack Voraces
  • Length: 10 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 308
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 297
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 297

 

Placed in an experimental medpod controlled by an advanced artificial intelligence, 93-year-old Colonel James Raytak continues the fight to repair his failing body. Leading his forces inside the game of Limitless Lands is helping the AI to heal his mind, but new threats are looming on the horizon. Forces both in and out of the game have begun their plans of conquest. Colonel Raytak must rely on his soldiers, his friends, and decades of real-world combat experience to face these new challenges. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing continuation on a Great new series!

  • By Dewey Gough on 01-31-19

I don't see the change.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-16-19

I got the second book because another review stated that the narrator learned from his mistakes and did a lot better in this book. I thought that it was rare to see a narrator read their reviews and change for the better between books so I picked it up. However, this is not the case.

His voice is still the same as it was and after 12 chapters, I need to call it quits. I like 2 of his voices but the rest I can't stand. The mayor sounds nothing like a college student, not a single one I have ever run into despite being one myself. Nearly every solider and his second in command still sound like they huff out every word through a voice filter. His female voices are all the same and sound flowery and sing song (Excluding the druid). I stopped when one character named William in Chapter 12 sounds like an android. GOD it grates on my nerves.

Don't get me wrong, it is still a good book and it is likely that the author did better than the first time. The motivations are in the right place and the story sends a good message. HOWEVER, I can no longer stand to listen. If you have no problem with the narrator in the previous book, then go for it.

Edit : I continued a bit more forward and the story is a bit better. But when I heard the Captain talk, who showed up to inspect the garrison, it was so bad that it gave me heartburn. That is not an understatement.

Edit 2 : I managed to finish the book. It is good. The story is great and I love the minor twist at the end. I would recommend this book if you liked the first. Against my better judgement I will get the next book in the series when it comes out. The narrator still grates on my nerves and I don't like his voices but I won't let that cloud my judgment on the narrative.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Level Up or Die!

  • Underworld, Book 1
  • By: Apollos Thorne
  • Narrated by: Graham Halstead
  • Length: 7 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 460
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 430
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 429

Elorion has just finished a VR gaming session to find a monster waiting for him. With 19 other students who have also been kidnapped, he is now subject to the whims of a thousand year old succubus, and he must survive deep under the Earth in the lost realm of the Underworld. Gifted with the ability to use magic and advance in power, he is given an ultimatum: Level up or die! 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Swords, spells, & ranch dressing in the Underword

  • By Ray Johnson on 06-05-18

A YA Litrpg

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-14-19

This book is decent.

The main character is 17 and loves both video games and food. The book ends rather abruptly in my opinion but oh well.

The narrator is good at Male voices and it interesting to listen to but cannot do female voices. They just sound like nasally men. Furthermore the relationships in the book seem very flat. They were all literally thrown together but still.

If you like LitRPG this is okay. There are definitely better ones. This one is good if you are running out of books to read. If you are new to Litrpg, read a different more popular series first. "The Land" by Aleron Kong is still my favorite series.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Limitless Lands: The Commander's Tale, a LitRPG adventure

  • Limitless Lands Series, Book 1
  • By: Dean Henegar
  • Narrated by: Jack Voraces
  • Length: 8 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 473
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 459
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 458

Colonel James Raytak is about to die. The 93-year-old combat veteran is living his last days in a nursing home; his only hope for survival is an experimental Medpod life support system controlled by an artificial intelligence. Co-developed by the world’s largest gaming company, Qualitranos the AI will also control the soon to be released game Limitless Lands. Without its creator’s knowledge, the AI decides the best course of treatment is to import its patient’s consciousness directly into the game.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Unique take on LitRPG

  • By thompson on 11-21-18

Good book with a bad narrator.

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-13-19

The summary of the book describes the first couple chapters. I recommended you skip to chapter 5 if you know what virtual reality is.

I don't like this narrator. He sounds like he is trying to add inclinations and emotions to his words as he is reading them, instead of planning ahead as to how the conversation should go. It sounds vaguely like if a robot were trying to figure out how to emulate human speech patterns and only go it half right. His vocal range is decent and I was surprised at his first female voice but his normal narrator voice grates on my nerves. The sound effects added are more of a nuisance than a benefit

The story of "Dirks" seemed a bit extra and out of place.

The robotic/walkie talkie effect on nearly every character is aggravating. Old people sound young and young people sound old. The town mayor specifically sounds nasally and old despite being a college student. The only characters that fit are Colonel Datec and the young druid.

I may be complaining too much but these are all my opinions. You may find little or nothing wrong with the narrator.

The story is interesting and I like the unique classes. The plot isn't huge but it continues on at a solid pace. The idea and effort behind the book is genuine and I believe in the message. If you can get through the narrator, it is genuinely a good book.

  • Delvers LLC: Adventure Capital

  • By: Blaise Corvin
  • Narrated by: Jeff Hays
  • Length: 13 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,259
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,155
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,151

By working together, Henry Sato and Jason Booth have managed to survive their unwanted trip to Ludus, an experiment planet. However, Delvers LLC has made some enemies...if monsters, bandits, mages, criminals, bounty hunters, and even dark cults can be called, "some enemies." After their latest battle, the two have been separated and must adapt or die. Henry in particular faces a trial by fire - perhaps literally - that may be impossible for him to overcome. The two American men will face their greatest challenges yet while working as conscripted Berber Intelligence agents. But even while outnumbered, and most likely outgunned, the former veteran EMT and resilient IT programmer will be armed with modern Earth know-how.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This is where it starts

  • By Eric Parks on 12-06-17

It's too much.

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-05-19

*Contains Major Spoilers*
Read at your own Discretion!

This entire review is an opinion and you have a right to disagree or disregard it.

It started with Marrine. She turned out to be a weak and broken fool. The only thing I absolutely hate more than fanatic cultists are hysterical mothers. True, Marrine isn't a mother but she apparently lost a child. This kind of thing pisses me off. Potential parents and women especially are often traumatized by the loss of a child who hasn't even been born yet. It completely baffles me. You aren't mourning a child you are only mourning the possibilities of that child. You can have another. You can adopt. There are other options but no, Marrine decides to completely and utterly break.

My favorite books are ones that can balance good and bad. A terrible past leads to growth and triumph over emotions. A overpowered and arrogant person is taken down several notches. The previous two books were amazing and were able to create a certain amount of balance but should have ended there.

The first dozen chapters or so were really interesting and had amazing character development. Henry and "A" lived just barely and were put in a tough situation. Henry lost his metal powers and "A" gained some backbone.

Then when we transition back to Jason and the others, it runs off the rails. It started with Marrine. Then everybody else other than "Ooloola" and Bezi-ibbi drowned in their own self pity. Then Henry became OP, then Jason, then Marrine, and don't even get me started on "A".

The introduction of the "luck" feature in this book is absurd. "A" one shots everything and is somehow able to influence events in the past with his power. This makes everything up until this point was practically meaningless and the risk that was supposed to be present was eliminated. Even Jason calls his power hacking.

The end of the book is like the author conjuring a whirlwind to blow through his plot and tear it to tiny pieces.

Jeff Hays is still an amazing voice actor an narrator but he couldn't save this book in a million years.

This book is pointless and the series is doomed. It escalated too quickly and the characters are ruined for me. I highly recommend not reading this book and just be satisfied with the previous two books. I understand now why the author has not made any more additions to the series and advise that he shouldn't even try to. It will more than likely be a fruitless effort.

I apologize for my bluntness and pessimistic attitude, my previous reviews were top notch and I loved this series, but this book completely ruined that happiness. I hope that you will not be disappointed the same way I was.

  • Obligations Incurred

  • Delvers LLC, Book 2
  • By: Blaise Corvin
  • Narrated by: Jeff Hays
  • Length: 9 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,584
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,447
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,440

Henry and Jason somehow survived being kidnapped to Ludus, a monster-filled, sword and sorcery world. They managed to make friends, pay their rent, and they even founded their own adventuring business, Delvers LLC. Unfortunately, by overcoming the odds and creating a reputation for themselves in such short time, monarchs and nobles have taken notice of the two men from Earth. Foreign, deadly struggles may be unavoidable for Delvers LLC.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not complete

  • By Jonathan on 06-29-17

An amazing experience.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-04-19

This book is an absolutely excellent continuation and may just be better than the previous book.

The exploration of weakness and mortality is something I dont often find in other LitRPG's. (Even if this one doesnt share the typical tropes of the genre.) I love that our chracters are getting stronger and finding new power. The fact that even though they are stronger than any normal human but still have such glaring weaknesses and still encounter people significantly stronger than them is exhilarating!

Delvers LLC is tasked with a new mission, they begrudgingly accept and begin preparations. Although they dont really make any real headway with their mission and it feels like they are slightly off track, the journey is always more fun and interesting than the reward.

Jeff Hays continues his amazing job and expertly portrays each of the characters. While I find one of the newly introduced characters a bit too rowdy, it is appropriate for their personality.

Each character is mortal. They have weaknesses. They bond together to become stronger. They are not immune from injury or loss. This is what makes this book different.

If I had to list one thing I have trouble with it is the names. It was different in the first book where the Jaguar clan had such odd names. I got used to it and knew how to differentiate most of them. This book however introduces a certain group with Asian sounding names. I have no issue with Japanese but Chinese is a weakness of mine.

The entire group has nearly impossible names for me to remember. They all have similar voices and they are mentioned so often that they all get jumbled in my head. Part of this is my fault for not being able to be understand. However, I also feel like the author could have made it at least a little easier to understand.

In the end, the names fit the characters and some of them are alien anyway so it doesnt really matter.

Overall, this book is an amazing piece of literature and highly recommend it. I am slightly disappointed there is currently only one more book in the series. I have high hopes there will be more though.

  • Delvers LLC

  • Welcome to Ludus
  • By: Blaise Corvin
  • Narrated by: Jeff Hays
  • Length: 13 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,475
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,282
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,278

Henry and Jason led normal lives in Seattle before they were abducted to another world. Their kidnapper, the vain, self-styled god Dolos, refuses to send them back unless they can accomplish an impossible task. Oddly, Dolos doesn't seem to care if they succeed or not. Luckily, Henry and Jason studied Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) on Earth. Unfortunately, a Japanese American EMT and a geeky IT programmer don't have many other useful skills on a sword-and-sorcery world like Ludus.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Like an R-rated Dungeons and Dragons cartoon

  • By C.T. on 02-25-17

It Feels Real

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-02-19

This is not necessarily a LitRPG. There are no character sheets.

Regardless of not having the typical character sheet and level up system, this book is still one of the best books I've had the pleasure of listening to.

Each character has a clearly defined backstory and we the chance to view each of their sides of the story. Each of the progresses and shows some sort of growth as a person. Each character is unique.

Jeff Hays does an amazing job as always in combination with Soundbooth Theater. His voices always seem real and distinguished from one another. He can do both male and female voices making them go high or low and anywhere in between. It doesnt sound like he is just reading the book. I feel like I am right there beside them at every turn.

The story progression is nice. It skims over most of the training, building, and innovating, moving on to sum it up or actually show the reader through actions.

The romance of the book is nothing to sniff at either. It is quite entertaining and endearing seeing the main characters pair up. The women actually have substance and character to them. I have read books where the women/girlfriend/significant other are often glossed over or given a stereotypical persona. These women feel real to me. They have faults, ambitions, family, and ideas of their own.

Overall, despite this not really being a LitRPG like I had thought, it is an amazing quality book. There are few other books that actually get me to feel like I am next to the characters vs just watching them from a distance.

10/10 I highly recommend this book for all types of readers.

  • The Dead Rogue

  • An NPC’s Path, Book 1
  • By: Pavel Kornev, Petr Burov - translator, Irene Woodhead - translator, and others
  • Narrated by: Shawn Compton
  • Length: 9 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 152
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 146
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 145

A game is only a game if you can quit. This is something I learned the hard way. I just wanted to let off some steam in virtual reality and ended up getting murdered and imprisoned in the body of one of the undead - slow, clumsy, and cursed to die at the hand of other players over and over again. The only way out of this awful predicament was to find the legendary Scroll of Rebirth, but the helpless plague-ridden corpse would need to be turned into a real killing machine. If only people knew what it was like to level up a dead rogue....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Morbidly fun

  • By Ray Johnson on 12-26-18

Lost in Translation

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-01-19

The awkward translation is hard to take. I have read russian translated books and there are usually phrases repeated in them continuously. This book was infuriating beyond the others though and the narrator didn't help. Things like the MC calling someone Necromancer over and over was a bit annoying but it ended quickly. Then we meet the priestess and BOY she is a piece of work. I wanted to tear my hair out at the seams with how many times she says "kitten". Enough already. Other big words used too often are Creton/Carion and Bitch. The latter used to describe dogs that attack the MC.

Another aspect is that there doesn't seem to be any character progression. There is no new emerging feelings, no real self reflection. The characters seem flat. Garth is a bit interesting since he switched so quickly but that is about it.

The narrator CANNOT do female voices. He also sounds like he is just reading the book. There are moments that are supposed to be whispers but he just talks aloud. There is no yelling, no battle cries, no yelps of pain.

The beginning of the book was interesting for me. A rogue type character which we don't often see as the MC in LitRPG's who is hacked into being a barely playable dual classed undead rogue. I like how often he dies in the begining. The way he kills players is clever. But it goes downhill as soon as he leaves the graveyard.

Each action, battle, quest, and interaction seems generic and bland. Walking through the forest, I lop that things head off. Oops I die again. I kill those things. I found another piece of this super rare set that Im not looking for. I find another little boy who helps me for no reason and is totally fine with me being undead. I die again. I kill those things.

There is no real substance to this book. I wonder if the russian version sounds or is any better. This version is not worth my time and credit. I do not recommend it. See my other reviews if you want to find a quality LitRPG.