Overgeared

Title: Overgeared

Author: Park Saenal / Translator: Rainbow Turtle

Chapters: 774 (Ongoing)

Location: https://www.wuxiaworld.com/novel/overgeared

Grid is a mediocre player in the immersive VR game Satisfy. But when his persistence unlocks a legendary class, his luck seems to be changing. Only he’s been saddled with Legendary Blacksmith, when he really wanted a combat class. The Legendary Blacksmith’s unique feature is the ability to equip any item, so he devises a plan to become the greatest through using items.

This is an extremely funny book. Grid isn’t familiar enough with games to know how to play effectively, and he’s also cursed by RNG, so things that even average players could do come with a lot of trouble for him. As an example, when he finally challenges a dungeon that recreates your greatest trials in the game, he’s fighting the rabbits in the starter town, because it’s the enemy he lost to the most.

Although my favorite bit of humor is Piaro. Grid runs into an insanely powerful NPC in the course of doing other things, and later when he needs more people remembers Piaro exists and recruits him. Piaro, having lived in the wilderness to avoid pursuers from his previous life, is dressed like a peasant, and Grid doesn’t bother telling anyone his true class or abilities, so everyone mistakes him for a farmer. Grid thinks this is funny and waits for everyone else to figure it out, but Piaro treats farming like training and pours all his considerable ability into it . . . leading to the creation of a legendary farmer who has a reputation for beating up strong people and then requiring them to work in the fields with him. “Happy Fun Training Times” indeed. Grid is, hilariously, extremely put out that Piaro’s potential got “wasted” on FARMING. He was hoping for Piaro to become a legendary sword saint like Piaro originally wanted.

And then Grid tries to complete Piaro’s revenge quest and comes back with another warrior . . .

Some bits of the book do drag a bit. For example, the second national competition was far too long. And no, I don’t buy that the viewership was that high, especially for things like an 8 hour blacksmithing competition. Most people would tune in right at the end to see the result instead of watching 8 hours of people hammering at forges. Even the Olympics don’t have that kind of dedicated attention.

It also seems odd to me that Satisfy is so popular when it features such things as using your real face instead of allowing you to create a character who’s totally unlike you. And it’s highly unbelievable that the executive team has time to sit around watching various players. Even more unbelievable is the mantra of “The game has no bugs and we refuse to interfere.” (As someone who works in software, the idea that any software has no bugs leaves me laughing hysterically.)

And some bits are probably going to rub some readers the wrong way. Grid is not only a terrible player at the beginning, but a terrible person. He’s a 26-year-old manchild who acts like he’s 13. But in the course of learning to love work, make friends, and find a purpose for his life, he starts growing up (of course, the story in its latest chapters is almost pushing it too hard in the opposite direction—but then Grid will do something utterly selfish and prove he’s not entirely reformed).

So overall this is a bit of a mixed bag, but the story is just so much fun I kept staying up way too late to read just one more chapter, even if I did end up skimming most of the real life segments in favor of the more entertaining game segments. I rate this story Recommended.

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