After his first college party, Dallion woke up, disorientated and alone, in a small room without doors or windows. Then he woke up again as an “awakened” in a small medieval village in the middle of nowhere. Now all he needs to do is figure out his where he is, what’s he become, and how to explore a world in which every item is its own realm.
Updates Monday to Friday
SUMMARY: Essentially, a guy awakens in a new world where every object from a mountain-sized mechanical castle down to a tiny pebble has an inner world that "awakened" can be enter and (1) repair and/or (2) level-up. The system is novel, but is poorly explained. I struggled initially because the author creates a strange starting situation where oddities in the starting village situation CAN'T be explained (not going to spoil the reasons why) and the character is literally unable to figure out how things work... which was VERY FRUSTRATING to read! This is resolved through the conclusion of the first major story arc.
WORLD SETTING/SYSTEM: "Awakened" can fight creatures that embody elements like rust, mold, wear, etc. within various objects, and by doing so repair them. The object worlds also have realm bosses, imprisoned in the objects, who are either very tough monsters and sometimes sentient humanoid, that can be challenged to improve the object "level" (which is a measure of complexity and material durability, and difficulty to further upgrade/improve the item) in various ways. These early "awakened" individuals can make a living by repairing and improving objects. More significantly, from the perspective of the awakened, by challenging, defeating, and improving objects the individuals improve an attribute; when awakening each individual gets one "ability". Accomplishments while clearing realms may result in improvements to abilities/skills. (Examples skills/abilities are "athletics" "acrobatics" "guarding" "attacking" "forging" "music")... Individuals skill/ability levels and their personal "attributes" (Body, Mind, Will, etc.) can be raised up to a certain level/cap by defeating guardians and leveling up the items. Titles can grant additional attributes. Higher level awakened have more advantages and abilities in addition to some limitations.
Certain events can grant additional abilities/skills (e.g. breaking through a level/cap). Caps for abilities/skills and attribute levels exist at Level 5, 10, 25..." Certain "awakened", like our protagonist, don't have normal caps. Our MC is blessed and can raise his skill/ability without limit (though his personal attributes are still capped.
Later in the story, the theme of Worlds Within Worlds is explored, along with questions regarding whether gods are gods, monsters are monsters, humans are humane, etc.
Character information and spoilers, with a healthy dose of my opinion, follow...
An awakened who comes from a family of downtrodden awakened, with an unknown/mysterious past. Pacifist, but wants to be a warrior. Wants to explore and uncover secrets, while becoming the strongest... without being able to adhere to a training plan or following through on any short-term plans.
For some reason, not explained by the author or story, the MC is so conflict avoidant that he will happily leave his home and town rather than deal with interpersonal conflict that might exist there. Not only does he not want to hurt the feelings of his friends, he doesn't want to do any harm to his enemies... even if this puts himself at risk. Paradoxically, it seems like, half of the time he ignores what everyone arounds him says and disregards their feelings (often making no effort to communicate with others) or asks for advice that he refuses, and then does NOTHING obviously productive.
POOR LIFE SKILLS - MOTIVATION
The main character says and makes choices indicating that they want to be strong, worldly-powerful, influential, etc. BUT, when given literally infinite time and opportunity to improve (easily), he can't seem to find a moment to do so. He sets goals, ones that make a LOT of sense, and then... nothing.
He will sign up for stuff and when told "Go to A and do 1, 2, 3..." he can do those things. However, he cannot, on his own, figure out that he should do B, C, and D, or if he knows he should do E, motivate himself to do steps E1, E2, or E3 unless someone shows up to hold his hand and make him. He does nothing to follow-through or even start to accomplish his goals. The problem isn't even that he lacks focus; he lacks the ability to make a plan and follow little steps to reach a goal. Even with people guiding him and helping him exactly how to succeed, he can't seem to figure out basics.
Examples of wasted opportunities:
But, he definitely wants to be on the BEST quests and takes insane risks to "win" the BEST trainers, that he then ignores (failing to practice the cheaty skills they show him).
Caveat here... plot armor is strong with the MC and Deus Ex Machina literally shows up regularly to bail him out; the gods find his stupid antics entertaining, and author hopes you will agree.
He puts himself into tragically stupid situations; e.g. carrying bags of gold into dark alleys in strange parts of town, or while his inner voice advisors are screaming "no... don't do it... stop!" electing to participate in rigged games of not-chance, or meet with warlords and crime bosses who have reputations for cheating.
To further make things confusing, he has random moments of pacifism and seems perfectly willing to kill some types of creatures (he makes a pet of one) but other creatures he cannot be forced to kill or hurt under any circumstances; the line isn't as clear as sentience or sapience or ability to speak (because he has on numerous occasions killed the sh*t out of intelligent speaking entities to gain levels... it truly is a mystery where the MC draws the line, or WHY he is drawing a line.
This results in a character who could be incredibly powerful who is nerfed in the story by his own @#$% personality. And, while I hate reading stories about overpowered characters, I don't necessarily find myself relating well to characters who are incredibly stupid/oversensitive.
Crazy World (And the MC is the only human who sees it)
So, for some reason, it seem like Objects have feelings and can talk to you. At some point in the story th MC develops the ability to hear them and becomes their champion. This results in him bag perfectly willing to kill the @#$& out of people, but he is too pacifist to hurt their poor innocent armor and/or weapons. (In his defense, he hears objects begging him to not scratch them and is now aa that his bed and silverware are judging him and may talk behind his back.) Wrap your noggin around that while you watch the MC scratch a quill across a sheet of paper, put on his underwear, watch him sit on a toilet, or throw a ingot into the kiln for smelting. Do they hurt? Do you damage your shoes when you walk down the street? Is your enemy's armor/weapon innocent, a combatant, and what if it decides to lie to you?
Objects experience extremely rapid time in the inner realm; months inside could pass in a second outside. However, beings appear to be trapped in these objects for hundreds or thousands of real-world, outside time (or hundreds of trillions of years in captivity assuming constant internal speeds). That is some extreme captivity in isolation!!!
Only our dumb-stupid MC, who has no skill limits, wouldn't have enough time to practice all his skills to perfection. Everyone in the MCs real world looks at him and sees a lazy idiot... for excellent reason!
I'm assuming this MC was a vegetarian-Buddhist-pacifist who paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to get into college, and then he sat in a dorm to play video games skipping classes, maybe working as a barista so he wouldn't starve and putting his retirement funds into lottery tickets or recklessly spending his money on impulse purchases. (This, in my opinion is what our MC would be like in the real world.) ... There is actually evidence in the story that the MCs friends/associates/coworkers in his original world would quickly find him tiresome and abandoned or avoided him... so this all checks out.
In short, this character has too many flaws to be an effective protagonist; moreover, he should have no desire to adventure given his life philosophy. As written, he should be lazing on a sofa, play his mandolin to make occasional money, find a low-stress girlfriend with low expectations, take no risks and hurt nobody.
I have no problem with him as a person, but in no rational story should this individual be trying to enter a martial tournament, war, or trying tear down political regimes and certainly shouldn't use as his principal tools, a sword, dagger, shield, etc.... this... well... ridiculous.
Also, no successful woman of any caliber would ever find his dopey antics "cute" or "charming"; they'd cut him loose in a day or less. (Goodbye childhood crush and gorgon girlfriend!)
I hope that the author grants his character an epiphonie where he realizes that he can't please everyone and isn't responsible for any accidental damages to objects occur when he fights or defends himself, and that maybe he isn't a pacifist and that is okay. Also, that he should maybe be more aware of his surroundings, options, and take opportunities to study and use the gifts he has been given. Otherwise, this story will continue to have issues.
This is a good story. It has nice pacing and good characters. But has a giant problem witch is the fact that MC is a puppet.
In this world, mind control is so easy that anyone with some authority can use it with no repercussions.
Like that isn't enough, everyone lies to MC in some way through the story. 'But for some reason', MC never notices them.
There are some problems with inconsistancies I would claim but MC get his information from people around him, and they are liars and/or mind controlled.
Good action, characters are not hollow and the world is interesting. What's this story's greatest strength is its unique magic and powerup path.
I've been reading this story pretty much every day and I decided to write a review, that does it justice. (At least I tried to) Please excuse any mistakes or weirdly written sentensces, as I'm not a native speaker. Also I tried to keep it as spoiler-free as possible.
First off all, thank you for brightening up my day with your amazing story, Author.
"Leveling up the World" is the entrhalling, no, the unpudownable story about the journey a boy named Dallion, who finds himself transported to another world. Its a breath of fresh air in a genre dominated by marysueesque characters facing their adversaries trough the means of realitybending, unstoppable powers and bad plot.
I think part of what makes this story so great is how lifelike and realistic its protagonist is portrayed. He honestly feels just like a real human being. How so? Well, he's not perfect. He's reckless and overconfident, dumb and insecure. I enjoy watching him grow and develop on his adventures. I love that he's not just another perfect hero. I love taht he's not an edgy cringelord. He's just like you and me. Thats what makes him as a character so damn enjoyable.
Another part of what makes this story so damn great are the system and the world, setting the scene for Dallions journey of growth. They're intruing and creative. I feel like everything is so carefully crafted and its concepts are full of inruiging und creative ideas. I love the originallity. I love the small nuances of classic fantasy being mixed with a multitude of new creative ideas. I love the courage of deviating from the norm of the age-old "Hero needs to save the world from demonlord" or the "let's just make everything a waifu" stories. It has that spark that just resonates with me.
The next big thing on my list is the pacing, which in my opinion just hits that sweet spot. The flow of the story is just right to give you that feeling of progression whithout skipping ahead or boring you out.
Last but not least is the writing. Another job well done. While I've already touched upon it before, it deserves it's own paragraph.
While we're slowly being fed bits and pieces of lore, Dallion is just out there growing accustomed this new world he's been thrown into. It really makes you emphasize with him. In a sense we're like Dallion: Opening a book, not knowig whats awaits us. I feel like thats why its so easy to indefy yourself with him. We're seeing the world trough Dallions point of view, exploring and discovering the world trough his senses. It feels as foreign to us as it does to him. Thats what makes you grow alongside him on this journey unraveling this foreign world. But thats where I'll stop. Why don't you take a look yourself?
8/10 - Ongoing - would recommend
Pretty solid story with a system I find extremely interesing, the character development so far is good but I find a lack of long lasting one friend or something (not an objetc), maybe beacuse the novels is still at the start, idk.
The world built is the unique aspect of this storie and the principal aspect of what makes it interesting.
Read everything so far, its a very interesting concept, and I love it so far.
Keep up the good work, I know I follow this series
While the story is fun the MC leaves alot to be desired, the MC is too unfocused and willing to screw himself over to anyone while going though trials to improve himself that he doesn't listen to After the fact.
Brilliant premise, an interesting level-up/power up system, nice worldbuilding, and a pretty good main character.
The way the MC gets stronger is interesting, and you can actually feel the tension you normally wouldn't when reading op MC isekai. It's a good read for litrpg fans.
So after the first big Arc is done I thought I might write a review finally. All in all its a very good story even though one might have the desire to smash their head against the wall for the MC´s choices in earlier chapters. As the author though already has said many times it is indeed getting better that now it is on a very acceptable degree and one can see the change the MC went through.
I really recommend it and would say yes it is hard to witness in the first 100-150 chapters but now after the Arc is done it obviously is so much better and is worth to read through it. Especially through the updates every day.
I really enjoy this story. I am at chapter 381 when writing the review and I have enjoyed another really good story arc. The characters feel real and the progression of the MC does not render him all-powerful within a handful of chapters but has him struggle constantly for it. And at the same time, we can see him growing and changing as a person, too.
The style of writing is good and as a non-native speaker, I did not spot any spelling or grammar mistakes.
I enjoyed every single of the 381 chapters so far and I am looking forward to the next adventures. This story is definitely a gem worth reading.