A new LitRPG novel from the author of the Dream trilogy, The Scared But Willing tells the tale of gamers drafted into a deadly electronic war.
As he slogged through the boredom of a career as a cubical drone Thomas Paine Cooper believed his life sucked, but it was not until the E11 Corporation entered his life that he discovered what life-scale suckage really meant.
The E11 Corporation’s meteoric rise to become a multi-billion-dollar technology giant was secretly based upon an alien AI reverse-engineering advanced technology.
Until the Human computer and data networks reached a point where the AI could hope to escape its bonds, and E11 found itself in desperate straits: Human-produced software could not contain the AI’s efforts to break free without real-time Human controls, but the Human psyche can not handle a purely electronic environment. In desperation, E11 built an interface that allowed Humans (their bodies ensconced in nutrient tanks) to experience a virtual reality environment similar to a fantasy world MMO.Except that the ‘players’ only have a two per cent chance of physically surviving the shock of dying ‘in game’.
Under the guise of employment opportunities E11 is press-ganging gamers into a virtual war designed to contain the homicidal AI. The interface feels real to the players, and death is certainly a fact, and the players’ only hope to return to their bodies and the real world is to play to win.The Scared But Willing are gamers who band together to hunt their ticket home: a thoughtful ranger, a Monty Python-loving wizard, a brooding barbarian, a lovely healer, a vulgar monk, and a rogue who lives for food and women. Bound together by the challenge of fighting their way back to the real world, they embark on the journey of their lives, learning a great deal about themselves as they struggle to escape.