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

Limitless Lands Series, Book 1
Narrated by: Jack Voraces
Series: Limitless Lands, Book 1
Length: 8 hrs and 39 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (931 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

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. 

Colonel Raytak must dust off his military training and lead his virtual troops in a fight to repair his broken body and mind while exploring the Limitless Lands.

©2018 Dean Henegar (P)2018 Dean Henegar
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    5 out of 5 stars

Well worth a Listen!

Personally speaking ive listened to 90% of the LITRPG books on audible and can say that this book has a far different focus then most if not all the other ones. without giving to much away, it focuses mostly on military and the development of a unit and commander, with aspects of a developing loot system for units and some forshadowing to potential city building elements(although it could be minor).

The story itself is short, but well worth the listen especially for people that are a bit older, as the MC is an older man with a military background. The real world aspects develop well with the in game aspects creating a more complete story. The battles were okay but at least in my opinion the focus seemed mostly on the commanders perspective, so although the MC saw and was part of numerous battles the command was more of the MCs focus.

Finally the preformance, for some listeners the narrators choice of sounds and effects could be off-putting, an assessment i dont believe is fair in this genre as most narrators do it but to each their own. looking past those elements(regardless of opinion) the narrator was an outstanding choice for the role the MC plays and the general vibe of the story. To say he brings alot to the table in this story is an understatement, the narrator clearly worked hard to produce this and it shows. His voice even fits the MC perfectly.

Overall this book although different from most in the genre, is more than worth picking up if you are a fan, it brings a newer aspect and amazing preformance.

23 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Fresh ideas for LitRPG, real-time and fantasy

“Limitless Lands” is a blending of a LitRPG, real-time strategy, and a fantasy world containing some unique and fresh ideas. Who would have imagined and army of Roman soldiers in a fantasy-like setting? It is the first book in the Limitless Lands series and a premiere work from author Dean Henegar. The audiobook edition is narrated by Jack Voraces, who appears to be a newcomer to the narration scene having three audiobooks listed on Audible at the time of this review. I found the author’s closing chapter impactful even though it was short, detailing his reasons and perspectives driving him to write the book; in many ways I which it had been the first chapter listened too. Overall, I liked the story and found enough fresh ideas to make it interesting and entertaining even though there were a few potholes along the way. I felt the author attempted to blend too many elements and genres which at times made the story more muddled, faded and disconnected from the core reasons people often listen to this genre. Additionally, I had issues with the overly used sound effects, character voicing, and production quality in the audiobook edition. Some of these audio problems may have taken away from the story itself instead of enhancing it. In such a crowded and rather hot LitRPG space, it can be hard to stand out. For me, the book was not bad, but it also was not to the standards that many now expect from the genre. If you are more a fan of military tactics and movements, this might be the book you are looking for. I thought the story diverged from many of the basic RPG fundamentals (stats, experience, etc.) for me to recommend it to people interested solely in LitRPG type books. There was some stats usage, but this was not the focus nor did one feel it was necessary nor impactful to the story’s outcome. I felt more like I was watching a real-time strategy game being played then an RPG, and I was never a fan of that type of game.

I enjoyed both the physical and virtual worlds the author created in the book. In the physical world we have a very utopian futuristic place where drones and robots are now the way wars are fought. Physical human military personnel are no longer required and many of those who remember wars involving humans are few and far between. Like many of our remaining World War II veterans today, the story’s main character is aged and finds himself in a rather different world. Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR) and game immersion are the things that some use for both escape and entertainment. The new system being brought online may have the ability to not only entertain, but help in slowing the aging process of our ninety-three-year-old veteran. A way to keep him alive is by having the all-knowing AI, running the game, import the patient’s conscience directly into the game. Here the main character leverages his skills and knowledge of war to win the many battles he faces all the while his body and mind are sustained and even enhanced in the physical world. There were some good transitional periods where the story shifts between the physical and virtual worlds. As with many other books in the genre, we have nanobots, medical reasons, and a few other standard tropes, but again it felt well-thought out and planned.

I liked some of the extra detail the author included such as the time compression of those in the game from those outside. A language translation system being included to make conversations with others around the world much easier, and there is the concept of one earning and converting virtual currencies to physical real-world ones. The world consisted of goblins, dryads, wolfs, spiders, and halflings along with quite a few others one meets along the way. The writing style was detailed and descriptive allowing the listener to be dropped in to the story having a good visual understanding of both worlds. What felt somewhat different for me was the additional RTS components around town building and resource management. It simply did not seem to fit the mold of a fantasy-based LitRPG, and in some ways it worked, but in others it just seems like an odd fit. A town requiring one building to be constructed before another could be built just did not feel right. I felt there was a good balance of action, adventure, strategy, and even emotion throughout the story. As I said earlier, it was entertaining but at time too different for my comfort level.

I think one of the main issues I had keeping me from enjoying the book was its audio quality and narration. No offense to Jack Voraces, the narrator, as such quality production takes time and honing and I’m sure will improve as he performs more books. But it was a bit too much for me and I can say that it was more a distraction than help. Many of the notes I took while listening to the book related in one way or another to the audio. During very quiet times or silence, I could hear audio compression artifacts. These were not excessive, but quite noticeable. Some of the character differences and voicing felt forced and a few times confused with another during conversation. As with many male narrators, voicing of female characters was not fluid, nor did it feel natural. In situations like these, I would rather a narrator just read the portion of text and not attempt to voice it as a character. I understand this is not easy for most narrators to get right when dealing with the opposite gender. Lastly, I think the sound effects often overpowered the narration and I would have liked to have had them more in the background.

For parents and younger readers, the book had some graphic scenes of war and violence which is expected in a book of this genre. I do not recall any mature subject matter or vulgar language used by the author which is quite unusual and in my opinion a welcomed change. I believe the book could be enjoyed by both younger and older audiences.

In summary, the premise, story and world are solid. A few of the components I felt did not belong in a LitRPG and I would have liked to have had more integration and impact of the main character’s stats as I watched him grow. I just felt this was a bit lacking. My biggest concern was with the narration of the different characters, the overpowering sound effects, and the annoying background compression noise. The story is detailed, yet it seems to lack continuity. I hope future books in the series are more RPG focused. A good listen if you can get past the issues I found while listening.

Audiobook was provided for review by the author/narrator/publisher.
Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.
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12 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Terrible narrator, good story

Unique take on the genre. Enjoyable story. The problem was the terrible narration. Weird sound effects that sounded like a 10 year old did them. Even mispronounced easy terms such as under fed. The narrator's poor performance was a distraction.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

It is acceptable

I might have been a bit generous with the star rating but really I am making this review to get a few things off my chest.

Story: It is a litrpg in that it takes place mostly in a game but there really aren't alot of stat windows or character sheets, it is mostly quest pop ups and exp... It is kind of weird as it would make me forget it is supposed to be a game then remind me in the most mundane ways (Pop up window says would you like to complete this transaction etc.) I found it irritated me... and the story kept a steady pace but was a bit slow.

Reader: OK I think I read a number of reviews saying he is awesome and a couple of reviews saying he was terrible. I shal explain why both make sense. The story starts out with a timeline (think movies starting with news headlines that are updating you on what has been happening upcoming to the actual movie involving the actors) and it is read like a voiceover for those headlines. Understandable. However once the headlines stop, the narrator has gotten stuck in reading like that and is reading each sentence like it is a headline. Eventually he breaks out of this when doing different voices for the most part. But... I'm gonna do the rest pro/con:
Pros:
Unique voices for each character, you can usually tell who's talking without prompting.
Honestly he puts alot of emphasis in his character voices so I am reinforcing it so you understand as much.
Cons:
His narrator voice isn't very good.
underfed is under fed, not un derfed

I can see the character voices making the story for people and I can see the narrator voice ruining it for people. underfed was also quite irritating to me, it was funny at first when I realized what he was trying to say, but the word got repeated like 20 times in the next 2 hours.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good book with a bad narrator.

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.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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not bad but felt dull

the story was ok, decently paced and told itself well but i never felt interested in what happen or any real tension when thing went bad, just felt like a bland story been read to me.

2 people found this helpful

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William Shatner eat your heart out

Narration a challenge. Constant odd pauses like trying to remember what voice using.
The story line was interesting to listen to with well rounded characters. But throughout book the odd pauses kept showing up. at first thought was just that character voice but NO it was the narration.
If narration not a big stumbling block for you then definitely give this book a try.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Unique take on LitRPG

Fun listen, good world building, new perspective with interesting mechanics, look forward to next book

8 people found this helpful

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one of a kind

Takes military tactics into a litrpg! really bad ass. main character is simple yet ideal

7 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Fun story, not my favorite narrator

Full disclosure- I received this book for free. That said, I genuinely enjoyed the story. This is my first LitRPG, but it was definitely worth the listen. The narrator isn’t my personal favorite, but he did keep it engaging.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anon
  • 10-26-18

Looking forward to more...

Saw the ebook get a lot of traction on amazon but waited for the audio to come out and was pleased that I did.

Dean Henegar has brought a breath of fresh air into the LitRPG genre. It seem so many of these books are focused on sword and sorcery style RPGs. Limitless Lands seems to take its inspiration more from RTS games and has the MC in charge of a platoon of men rather than fighting alone or in a team of other players.

I cant wait to see how this mechanic plays out in further books as it could get really interesting as the MC is given more troops to command. Im thinking castle siege or large scale battles.

Jack Voraces did a fantastic job bringing the characters to life. He had a distinct voice for every character and was able to play into the more emotional parts as well.

Looking forward to more from them both. When is book 2 coming….!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Morris
  • 02-02-19

Amazing book! Defo in my top 5 litrpg

This book is amazing. I planned to listen it for a couple of hours each day and ended up binge listening it in one run. The plot follows a unique levelling system and the story is just as unique. I love the MC and can't wait to see how he develops in the later books.
EDIT: On my second read. Need more!!!!

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • austin duffield
  • 10-09-19

A great book for teenagers

A solid listen. Interesting ideas. Narration took some getting used to personally but this is, of course, always subjective. My 15 year old son loved it.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Troy
  • 02-10-19

Great fun, slow start

This book starts a bit slow but after the first 1/2 dozen chapters I was hooked.

The book is an interesting mix of world building around Hayden’s Knoll, a frontier town in a game world and battle stories focusing on the main character, a veteran field commander.

1 person found this helpful

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  • nsdard
  • 10-25-18

You feel like you are there

Great story, which the narrator brings to life.
I was quickly absorbed and felt I was right there watching it unfold.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Emileecvz
  • 06-12-20

Amazing writing and Narration

finnished it in one go. books like this are why I love audio. Jack Voraces narration was great, clearly distiguishing his characters.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-09-19

Nice and different lit rpg

The book was very nice, the author is a beginner and its noticeable. But the premise of the book is very cool and I loved that the Mc focused on something else than slashing and casting fireballs until everything died.

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  • kharnynb
  • 12-01-19

Very nice backstoried litrpg with a great narrator

The story is written in a "near-future" setting, making the "limitless lands" a first ever AI controlled MMORPG.
The main character being a combat veteran in a world that no longer has any who is going through medical trials supported by the AI, that integrates his recovery in the game.
It's a good setting, with enough background and "realism" to make for an engaging story.

Narration is great, characters have different accents that separate them and the storyteller voicing is clear with good pace.
All in all, this is a recommended Listen and I've personally already started book 2.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-09-19

Fantastic Book

Really enjoyed this book from start to finish looking forward to starting book 2

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  • Liam
  • 10-01-19

Wow

Fantastic! A real breath of fresh air! Already bought the second & third installments!

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  • Cory
  • 12-12-19

Narrator was almost a deal breaker.

Great story but I really struggled with the narrator. the accents were terrible at best.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-17-19

I just wish it was longer

It was a great book to sleep to and I found it quite charming with an old mans grace.

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  • Bradley
  • 06-27-19

Love this book

I love this book. It has some good ideas in it as well as a good story line, I’ve listened to over 400 books on Audible and I would place this book close to the top. the one thing that I can recommend is that you change the sample. I would have listed to this book much earlier if it had a different sample. For example, in the first 20 seconds it repeat Richard goblins. Which in my opinion doesn’t sound very good. And it’s not until I got to that part of the book with all the back stories that it made any sense. But other then that it’s a Great book

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  • Simon
  • 02-26-19

A good read

Introduces some new character types that fit the character's background, not a rehash like a lot of books in LitRPG. Really enjoyed it.

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  • Dean
  • 11-29-18

Nice change from the usual

Wish it was longer, really enjoyed the focus on living and fighting instead of being made super special and having power given to you like most of the lit rpg book do for a refreshing change of pace!