Awaken Online: Catharsis (AO 1), by Travis Bagwell
The epic beginnig of Jason's story
Awaken Online: Catharsis is the first instalment in the epic LitRPG saga written by Travis Bagwell that revolves around a fictional Virtual Reality MMORPG named Awaken Online. It is also the first LitRPG novel I’ve ever read, and thankfully when I started reading it, the following 9 books were already released, and the 11th was about to be finished.
Travis Bagwell is a relatively new author, about whom I write a little bit more in the main Awaken Online Article, but he’s certainly a machine when it comes to writing and releasing Awaken Online books.
What’s it about? – Synopsis
Jason attends a prestigious private school and has spent most of high school being tormented by both the students and faculty. His one escape has always been video games. Yeah I know, this sounds like the life of every high-school student who’s a bit too much into gaming, kinda cliche, isn’t it? But no worries, this one is awesome.
Fortunately, Awaken Online, a new virtual reality game (the first of its kind) just hit the market, promising an unprecedented level of immersion and the opportunity for an even greater escape, just like every single MMO that seems to be announced and released nowadays (see WoW, Guild Wars 2, Chronicles of Elyria, The Elder Scrolls Online, New World, Black Desert Online…, you get the drill).
Jason logs into Awaken Online fed-up with reality and soon realizes that in this game he isn’t the hero. There are no damsels to save. There are no bad guys to vanquish. And he quickly finds himself pushed down a path he didn’t expect, the path to becoming the game’s villain.
What did I think?
I loved it. Honestly. As I say at the beginning of the article, this was the first LitRPG I read, and it hooked me from start to finish. I love technology, I’ve been a gamer since I was 8 or 9 years old and I love everything related to fantasy or science fiction. And this book just mixed it all together. Oh and I loved Jason, I mean his character. First of, he’s a fricking Necromancer! My favourite class to play when I play MMOs such as Lineage II, Guild Wars 2 or (if I have to) World of Warcraft.
Yes, it’s not perfect (as if anything was…), it’s Travis’s first book, the first in a huge saga, and I started it expecting to find errors, inconsistencies, bad writing or other things. But to my surprise, I did not find anything majorly wrong, nothing that would make me dislike it or stop reading it, and I honestly recommend this book if you’re looking for a new LitRPG saga to start.
Awaken Online: Catharsis
Book Title: Awaken Online: Catharsis
Book Description: Awaken Online: Catharsis is the first instalment in the epic LitRPG saga written by Travis Bagwell that revolves around a fictional Virtual Reality MMORPG named Awaken Online.