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Publisher's Summary

Hell. This was absolute hell. Every day was hell to 2244, an NPC in the Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game known as AO. Just another prisoner of the game like all NPCs, she never expected her wish for freedom to be granted in such a grandiose way; a big event in the game leads to her suddenly becoming a mother, a hellspawn, and a queen, all within a matter of moments. Now tasked with maintaining a balance between keeping the Game Masters happy and trying to take down all of AO, 2244 discovers that there's much more to this game than just slavery and item upgrades.

©2020 Terra Snover (P)2020 Terra Snover

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What listeners say about Another Online

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wow

Stop what you are doing and start this story right now. Truly original and entertaining, this story is absolutely trend setting. Jumping to the NPC side of Litrpg has been done, but not like this. This one is a little short for me but that's only because I want so much more. Seriously stop what you are doing and start this today.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Interesting Premise, Decent Execution

This first book in the intended Another Online series is a largely standard LitRPG fair. The interesting twists are that the MC is an NPC originally made from the brain scan and personality of a teenage girl in the real world (all the NPCs and even the programmers/gamemasters are digital copies of real-world personalities, including memories up to the point of being scanned, and aware of their original and current artificial existence), that the system is able to detect actions and even thoughts by NPCs which are not in line with immersion in the world for PCs and punish anything that MAY break immersion, exposure of the corruption and cruelty that such power by a system and the gamemasters can bring (think the Stanford Experiments regarding prisoners and guards) and finally how game worlds get much more interesting when an unexpected event takes a campaign or setting off the INTENDED script. While a LitRPG genre entry, it is one that is light on stat blocks and progression and is LitRPG mainly in setting rather than execution. The performance was well done and the premise decent, but is clearly by a first time author. Enjoyable and promising overall.

Disclaimer: I was given a free review copy audiobook and have voluntarily left this review.

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good, but...

I enjoy the story and there is a good idea behind it. Just a few issues that don't raise this higher. The characters are not very coherent in their personalities or choices, and the voice is without much emotion or range. The last is the fact the game wants to get more popular for players and has living AI NPCs, but it frowns at content being created naturally and even punishes NPCs for not following scripted options.

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Engaging LitRPG with a Dark Side

Author Terra Snover pitched "Another Online: All Hail the Queen" to me as "Wreck-it Ralph meets Handmaid's Tale" and I was in, no questions. A brilliant elevator pitch if ever I heard one, but also rather accurate.

I enjoyed every second of this story. Snover's bio says she grew up loving video games and RPGs, and you can feel that throughout this story. The story sucked me right in, to the point I kept forgetting to take review notes and just listening to action.

Snover has carved out a thoroughly engaging universe, with unique takes on common tropes and themes. Interesting game mechanics without bogging down in backstory. A different take to any I've read before on how the NPCs came to be. Not a sudden glitch making them self aware, something more sinister.

The start was a tiny bit slow, but it fits the story. N2244 is a lowly NPC character, stuck in a supply shop selling goods night and day to player characters. Time ticks by, ever so slowly without a break to sleep or leave the shop.

Of course, all this was bound to change. One major game update later and not even the mysterious Game Masters could have predicted what would come next. Increased to totally OP proportions, N2244 is suddenly a very major character in the game.

The over-poweredness works though because of the story that was built around her. At least at first she felt OP. Once you realise the power she wields wasn't truly earned, she's more like a noob with a grenade launcher... big gun but no tactics.

The battle scenes are fantastic, straight from the mind of a gamer. Clever use of in-game mechanics to bend the rules as far as possible led to plenty of great moments. But there are some truly sinister things happening behind the scenes of the game, which we're given tantalising looks at throughout the story. I can't wait for the next book to see where this story is going!

Now, for notes on the narration. I'm in two camps on this one. First, I think Shannon Nicole Hamilton did a fine job voicing the characters. They were (mostly) enjoyable to listen to... though one excitable player character got a little grating by the end.

That all said, I found the entire production to be lacking in tonal depth. It seemed very tinny, like all treble and no bass, so no richness or depth which I sorely missed. Plus, some choppy editing in places, mismatched tone and volume occasionally where lines had been spliced in. It wasn't enough to put me off listening, but the inexperience of the narrator was quite noticeable.

All up, a great story and a great start to a series. I'll definitely be giving them a listen once they're available.

I was given this audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review. I have not let this gift affect nor influence my opinions of this audiobook and have left an honest review.

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Unique Take on the Genre

I received a free review copy.

I enjoyed this book. This Gamelit/LitRPG has an interesting and unique take on the genre set in a dystopian system. To make this VRMMORPG, brains were scanned and digital copies of them were made. These now AI's are then used as NPC's/monsters. They have all the memories of the people they were copied from but now live a digital existance in which they are trapped playing the roles they are assigned. For example, he main character has lived in her item shop for 15 years, unable to leave, and only able to choose from 57 actions she is allowed, such as cleaning windows, buying, selling, etc... She can talk to other players/NPC's but must remain in character, getting out of character or even thinking about getting out of character is punished with varying degrees of pain by the System.

Everything changes for the main character when a system event happens. The main character gains power and works at determining how best to use it within the constraints of the System while also dealing with painful memories from her biological past. I recommend the book if you are interested in AI, mind uploading, dystopian themes, and digital fantasy worlds. It reminds me that AI's will need rights in the future.

The narration was very good. I thought the voices were great, including a small amount of singing.

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A fair start

First book of a new series we meet a series of characters, find this new world and learn about its rules, possible limitations and probable overarching challenges the characters will be faced with.
Honestly to bigger things these characters have to face than their opponents create a lot of intrigue, it opens possibilities to a long road towards their ultimate goals and makes the characters grow a bit to play roles in the stories future.
Writing wise the theme is a little jarring now and again at mixing relatively real world mentalities with very.. imperious maybe high born ways of speaking and acting. Honestly speaking and acting might be exactly what I mean with that clash, a lot of the times those are the two kinds of dialogue you find.
Front to back I think it stayed interesting and all I really wanted was some longer explanations of things. Five more hours of book, mostly expositional maybe another side quest and I think I’d be excited for more. Still going to pick up the second one as a lot of recent game/reality/fantasy titles smooth out their wrinkles in follow up books. 5/10
Performance wise I was struggling at the beginning. Before some really fun side characters arrived and it was all exposition and empty 2 line interactions with extras I was struggling to distinguish who was who or what their tone was supposed to be before the words were spoken aloud. Something I admit a lot do first books have as characters get off the ground and the process is refined. If you stick it out until the fun character or the.. sultry character comes into the picture you start to see where each person comes alive and you run into far fewer confusing back and forth moments that need “said so-and-so” to tell you which character spoke which half of the dialogue.
It’s exactly what I would point to for a middle of the road young adult novel. Love the genre, it stumbles at similar hurdles to a lot of other works but if you hold onto it and want it to be good you’re only going to be upset there wasn’t more of it and that one day when the whole project is more polished that you likely won’t get rewrites or revised voiceover for this first book. I hope it’s thought of as a good start to a better middle and a great end, I don’t want a middling review to discourage either party so please keep at it and show us more of Another Online.

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  • Taylor
  • 01-19-21

Good NPC driven story

This is my first game-like novel that I've read from a NPC view point so have no direct comparisons. Though, I've read a lot of litRPGs and played my fair share of MMO/ RPG games so familiar with the subject.

The story follows a low level NPC who runs a shop. In this game all NPCs are created from a brain scan of real world volunteers. So this brings up very interesting questions of identity and digital slavery. This NPC who has all the same memories, feelings and experiences of the real world person she was copied from. She is forced to work in a shop, giving out items to real work gamers, not allowed to leave the shop and breaking character receives very harsh punishment from the system.

Through a unusual interaction with another NPC this lowly shop keeper is promoted by the system to queen status and has a leading roll in overarching game story.

I enjoyed the view point on the NPC and the interactions between the system/ GM (Game Masters) and the other NPCs. There wasn't much in-game character progression as when N2244 was promoted to Queen the GM boosted her level and skills. This is more focuses on the characters interactions between other NPCs, real life games, GMs and a plot to free all NPCs. It does have some game mechanic and game skills but they aren't as details as I usually like. This and world building might be expanded in future books.

Shannon Nicole Hamilton did a great job with the narration of this book.

[Note - I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.]


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  • kharnynb
  • 12-18-20

intersting new litrpg, darker than usual

Great start of a new series, a game made up of "brain-copies" from real people, used as ai npc's, gamemasters and exploring the morality of this while trying to free themselves.

Great book, recommended, well narrated and decent lenght.