Overlord (LN)


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After announcing it will be discontinuing all service, the internet game ‘Yggdrasil’ shut down… That was the plan, but for some reason, the player character did not log out some time after the server was closed. NPCs start to become sentient. A normal youth who loves gaming in the real world seemed to have been transported into an alternate world along with his guild, becoming the strongest mage with the appearance of a skeleton, Momonga. He leads his guild ‘Ainz Ooal Gown’ towards an unprecedented legendary fantasy adventure!

Associated Names
One entry per line
Related Series
Altina X Overlord Special Collaboration Booklet (Side Story)
Overlord (WN) (Web Novel)
Dungeon Defense (14)
The New Gate (5)
Death March kara Hajimaru Isekai Kyusoukyoku (WN) (5)
Kyuuketsu Hime wa Barairo no Yume o Miru (4)
The Lazy King (4)
The Strongest Guild Master Founded a Nation in a Week (4)
Recommendation Lists
  1. Isekai
  2. Game World Isekai
  3. Best of the best
  4. Good but gorey

Latest Release

Date Group Release
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13 afterword
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13 epilogue
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13c7
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13c6
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13 intermission
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13c5
05/20/18 Overlord Translations v13c4
10/17/17 Overlord Translations v12 afterword
10/17/17 Overlord Translations v12c3
10/17/17 Overlord Translations v12c2
10/17/17 Overlord Translations v12c1
10/22/16 Overlord Translations v11 afterword
10/22/16 Overlord Translations v11 epilogue
10/26/16 Overlord Translations v11c5
10/26/16 Overlord Translations v11c4
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New silksong23 rated it
September 15, 2019
Status: v13
One of the best Isekai OP LN series.

The world is so vast on this series which makes thing more exciting.

As of volume 13, there are still so many things to look forward on future arcs (which makes me sad that the author announced it's gonna end on volume 30 down to 21 down to 18 down to 17)
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New Farid_san rated it
September 1, 2019
Status: v13
This is one of the best light novel i've ever read. A few people think that Ainz is a douche or just a plain coward, or the novel pacing is just too slow, or the novel gives too much detail to unimportant even, as I read on previous comments giving a low rates. I just cant relate to ther thoughts. I mean, shouldnt it be a total opposites?

First, Ainz is a lovable chara. Because he's undead we dont need to bother about his sexual interaction with the NPCs, and... more>> instead just focus on the character building and the plot, and isnt that a qualification of a great novel normally? Beside, Ainz isnt a douche and a coward. When you read on part where Ainz dealing with matters (human or monster), he's always thinking carefully of what he should do or he should say, even going as far as using his experience as an ex-salary man. And certainly, Ainz is growing, he's deligently learning many things, he's a hard-working person, instead of just dumping every responsibility to the NPCs, he's learning to shoulder the burden too. Going as far as acting, I mean he learn how to act as a ruler, how to speak as a ruler, even a tiny detail of his act on everyday basis that seems mundane were all the fruits of his efforts. And lastly, he's not a coward. He's carefully calculating everything, taking everything into account, and planning for the worst to come. Actually, I even agree with Demiurge's comment about him as a wise man. He's really a wise man. Apart from his skill to suppress his panic, he's actually very carefully searching his place in the new world. Gathering knowledge and intel, and intentionally kept his skills and his NPCs power a secret. That's a good move for a ruler. After all, blindly flaunting their sheer power is foolish, and he must first gather intel as to know is there a person/a group stronger than Nazarick. So, he's not a coward, he's a carefull person. If Ainz is just a douche and A plain idiot then this is how probably he would do: "he would just barging to the new world, bragging about resources and power blindly, and then will be wiped out by some world class item from the Slaine Theocracy because they're undead and obviosly a threat without having the chances to knowing who they are, or even knowing how there's a world class item there in the first place."

Second, The novel pacing is not too slow. I guess its how the appropiate novels should have. By taking a long time to explain every litte detail in the New world, its just making the reader able to imagine vividly how the novel goes. A good novel is something that can bring the reader to the world where the author set the story on, isnt it? And beside, everything written here was just as important as the main plot. It makes us understand the reason why some character do something, and makes us relate to them greatly. And lastly, the plot is just amazing, its so logical (apart from the main plot about sorcery and supernatural and the likes) and not just some fantasy-like story web novels have nowadays that have a plot-armor saying "its just a fiction and a fantasy, so building a nation is an easy peasy, having so many harems is a natural, and destroying another nation without having as much intel is natural", , , well im sorry if I hit some other novel that clearly just a super cheap rip-off from Overlord, lol.

After all, its true that this novel is not a light read. But it is something that worth your time. A novel worth for you who seeks a good story and want to actually read something decent. <<less
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rdawv rated it
March 23, 2016
Status: --
The memorable thing about this novel for me after the passage of time is the MC’s callous behavior. There haven’t been many LNs and their anime adaptations that describe brutality and disregard for life at the forefront like this, which evokes the images of Light Yagami from Death Note. As it also started off as a VRMMORPG, one can consider Overlord to be one of the first to showcase darker aspects instead of the noble-hearted characters like in Sword Art Online or Accel World (. hack doesn't count because nobody... more>> remembers it).

The main character himself is a dichotomy, two personalities that seemingly opposing to each other. On the surface, he plays a coldly calculating and dispassionate immortal being that sees everything else as inferior. Yet on the inside, he still remembers his original human personality and his lack of confidence, especially when dealing with his followers who obey him zealously. His experiences with his subordinates who are overpowered creatures in their own right reminds me of the humorous scene in “Monty Python’s Life of Brian”, where the protagonist yells at the crowd in exasperation at their blind faith in him, only for them to repeat his words as gospel.

When we read about his fortress-like sanctuary and his numerous and unique minions, it’s like a chuuni dream come true. Remember, the times when you scribble and sketch about yourself being the president of the universe, having your secret base where friends/subordinates with superpowers hang out and an arsenal of ultimate weapons...

The difference is in the writing, which is written in a solemn style that depicts action, violence and black humor. Minor characters die horribly, casually killed by beings that deemed them as annoying little bugs. The MC’s subordinates can barely conceal their disgust and disdain for ordinary humans, putting their master in an awkward spot. But then again, the MC himself treats the inhabitants of his new world with as much interest as a kid with an ant-farm.

The main draw of the series is seeing how an overpowered, deity-like being and his cohort of followers crush all those in their way. Renowned warriors, mages, assassins, the theocracy and the royalty, all their scheming and struggles are petty and pointless because they couldn’t comprehend the sheer magnitude in the difference of power.

It is very well written, though the author can veer off the path considerably for padding material. For those who want to read more after watching the anime, you can continue from volume 4. However, I strongly suggest reading from the start as the novel version had a lot of internal monologue and descriptions that adds to the characterization which were glossed over in the anime. <<less
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Archerreborn2 rated it
February 26, 2016
Status: v10
Overlord is a lot closer to a real novel than most of the stuff you'll see on this site. If you're used to the light novel format and expect the plot to move at a breakneck speed while focusing mainly on the MC with small sections for the side characters, then this won't be your cup of tea.

I would say about half of Overlord is about the MC. The other half splits its attention over the various colorful side characters both from the MMO and the New World. It does... more>> a really good job juxtaposing the differences between the MC, his minions, and the people of the new world.

If your only interested in the perspective of the MC, then I don't think this novel will be a good fit but for people who really like world building and character interaction this is probably something you'll like. I consider this to the one of the best Japanese light novels on this site. <<less
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Thanh rated it
September 21, 2017
Status: v11c5
This novel is definitely one of the best that I have read in my life. And I mean "novel", not "light novel", since this novel, in my opinion, is qualify as a real novel. I love to read and I have read many novel before, written by English, Japanese, Chinese, Russian, etc. And I assure you that Overlord is very good.

It is true that there are still many flaws, but this one is not just wish fulfillment or being dark and such. In fact, the author seems to be very... more>> good in mocking those dark, bland stereotype with his many colorful characters. While character's development is indeed slow, it is definitely there and is interesting, if rather subtle. And KodamaDauragon, did you ever read past a few pages, or are you a brain-dead fool? He is NOT transfer to a game, but a REAL world, with pre-existing natives. And he is not dark or showoff, if he does occasionally, they are just acting to mislead other, and is a very effective way to show that he is actually decently smart, just spineless and have weak will.

The best thing is that the author show many point of view, and while it is true that the pace is slow down because of that, it make the world 'real'. All characters in power are intelligent, whether in game or this world. So the many point of view show how they see the MC and explain very well why they all cower before him, even though you know most of the achievement come from misunderstanding.

The final thing, KodamaDauragon is an idiot, that world is real and feel real. This novel actually seem to occasionally mock the other LN's stupid point, such as make everyone dumb to make the MC look better, dark/emo tween, pointless harem and such. If you like novel with author who actually RESPECT the reader's intelligent instead of treating almost all of them as immature brat or idiotic pervert who only care about p***y and pointless harem, you should read this and I assure you that you won't be disappointed. <<less
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Framee rated it
February 14, 2016
Status: --
Reason to read
- Game like world
- Reasonably strong MC (between player), but also OP for the current world.
- Funny in some part
- Albedo
- Albedo
- Story
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keklel rated it
July 29, 2016
Status: v4c2
>We’re almost out of time, what the hell am I doing? It seems like my mouth won’t stop whenever I talk about the glories of Nazarick...

The story is very verbose, almost filled to the brim with grandiose descriptions of various aspects of the world which aren't really relevant or important to the story, for example various characters' appearances, dress, equipment, decorations, mannerisms and so on. If you like to visualize then I imagine reading this would be like watching a movie or TV series. But if you just want to... more>> know what happens like me, then it would be quite frustrating to have to read through all that needless exposition. The level of detail is insane. Everything from characters histories, personalities, relationships, abilities, items, to the traits of various races. It's all described with painstaking verbosity.

>There are two volumes that are just a bunch of side stories. I know side stories are fun to read but not as a single volume. There are many ways to weave these into the end of the chapters or volumes but when it takes a single volume it just spells of bad writing to me. Especially when the last volume ended in a cliffhanger (Volume 7). And these side characters never really gets a focus aside from the side stories they were introduced which makes them somewhat a distraction and a waste of time to read. Most of the time it takes a chapter or two to flesh out a character which is a drag. I think this could be summarized better as we are not really moving plot wise. The lizards are just mention in a single scene cameo and that is after 2 volumes from their introduction, I felt these characters should be at least have some more focus if the author spent time to flesh out their stories for one volume.

This is one of the major gripes I have with the story. The author spends an entire volume talking about the tribal politics of lizardmen and the romantic relationship between 2 lizards specifically and they're never mentioned again, which makes it feel incredibly boring and pointless especially since the lizardmen are so weak that Ainz could have just walked over them which makes all that description just pointless. It's like spending an entire volume describing how people were rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.

The pacing issues aside, the story is simply just not interesting. Shalltear gets MC'd, then the MC decides to go invade lizardmen. What? Many chapters later it's still not revealed who MC'd Shalltear. Whatever I've lost interest.

At first sight you'd think the MC is some genius overlord, the reality is he's anything but. Keeps making basic blunders like TELLING YOUR ENEMIES IMPORTANT INFORMATION BEFORE KILLING THEM or just letting them go without capturing them or anything. Kind of dumb. I mean he's supposed to learn from his mistakes later on but this seems kind of out of character since he's supposed to be really cautious and plus he has those mental buffs from being undead so he isn't supposed to lose control over his emotions or do anything rash yet he keeps making blunders repeatedly as well as do things emotionally which makes him a really inconsistent character.

I don't think I have to mention the other characters who are LITERALLY NPCs. I mean that is as bland as you can possibly get. They're not well written either, they're all basically just slaves to the MC (or his guild). Anything bad about them will be attributed to the fact that they're NPCs and anything good would elicit the "wow the author is so amazing he can even make NPCs seem humanlike" type of response. They're basically single-trait one dimensional cardboard cutouts. We don't even get any insights into how they think either (well I guess it'd be pretty boring anyway) so they're just presented as robots.

Definitely overrated. I wonder how many people reviewing this have read this as their first LN/transported to another world novel. <<less
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xDarkness rated it
February 2, 2018
Status: v12c1
5/5 for the world-building, story and well portraied side characters.

-1 for Ainz being an inconsistent AND incompetent character. He basically can read neither situations nor persons. Although he was supposed to be an ordinary, working adult, he ACTUALLY feels more like a NEET with no experience of social interaction

-1 for the pointlessness of most of the plot, don't get me wrong, it's well structured and well written, but I really don't see any point in so many side plots, if 90% of them are dead ends with the introduced characters... more>> either dying or never being relevant again. Besides, it's really depressing too. Lizardmen are an exception though

How do I start, I kinda have a love-hate relationship with Overlord.

The story really draws you in and the characters are really well-written, interesting and realistic. Alhough some volumes have a rather slow start, in the end I always end up reading them until 3 am.

The world-building is well structured and interesting too with several big things foreshadowed which keep it interesting.

Although some things are predictable, the whole development on a big scale is not, so if you're bothered by predictable plot, fear not (too much).

However, it really bothers me how hypocritical Ainz is at times. For example:


in volume 12 Ainz says all the time that he dreams about a nation in which all races can live alongside each other and is portraied as someone who doesn't randomly kill anyone without a good reason (so basically he won't needlessly kill the innocent), but then he proceeds to kill half a nation for no apparent reason except maybe information gain and making them immediately surrender to his rule? Although there would've been plenty other ways of achieving that??


I really don't mind good characters dying, even without a reason, buuuuut the author just spams it too much. For the sweet and juicy love of god (no homo), if you bother to introduce a character in great detail,


to the point of actually writing 1-2 volumes mostly about him,


then don't just friggin kill him off on a whim without storyrelevant reason whatsoever purely to portray Ainz as a cruel game of thrones like ruler which is totally in contrast to how his personality is usually shown as. This is completely tilting me because the author does it so frequently and because it's totally predictable. Why bother saving, being nice to and even TEACHING a character, if you're gonna let them die a dog's death? Are you for real??? I get that Overlord is 18+ so we're gonna have torture, cruelty, interesting characters dying and whatnot, but if you don't give a f**k about them surviving, then don't bother being so nice to them in the first place, that's needless cruelty which doesn't even fit to how Ainz's personality is displayed usually in the first place.

So far we've had


Arche dying after being saved by Ainz,

Neia who was basically the only topic the whole 12th volume was about being pretty much sentenced to death at the end and probably gonna die in the next volume

Evileye being foreshadowed of being killed off pointlessly some time in the future

and many more less relevant characters like Neia's father, Stronoff, etc.


It greatly rustles my jimmies to the point that if the foreshadowing in volume 12


of Neia dying a friggin pointless dead too, just because Ainz is too friggin dense to realize how much she admires him


is fulfilled in vol13, I will just quit this novel, no matter how good it is in all other aspects.

There's really no point in reading a novel if you already know that every more than just a bit interesting character introduced will be killed off in a cruel and pointless way.

You might have noticed, but I'm really mad, writing this review immediately after having finished volume 12. Still, besides that, the novel is just so unbelievable good, so although I'll most likely gonna quit reading if vol13 disappoints me too, I still can't rate this lower than 3 stars. Dammit author, why do you do this to me........ <<less
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Fhighlander rated it
April 17, 2017
Status: v11
One of the best LN I've read so far.

A overpowered MC making his dream come true for his former comrades sake. Sometimes I miss a little more intrigue in his battles but so far I can't complain.

Take your time and read this piece knowing that you will not waste your time. Believe me.

And [Grasp Hearth] magic will stole your heart, I really mean it.
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razgallo rated it
December 28, 2015
Status: --
You either love it or hate this story, I like the theme and story but the author’s style leave something to be desired.

There are two volumes that are just a bunch of side stories. I know side stories are fun to read but not as a single volume. There are many ways to weave these into the end of the chapters or volumes but when it takes a single volume it just spells of bad writing to me. Especially when the last volume ended in a cliffhanger (Volume 7). And... more>> these side characters never really gets a focus aside from the side stories they were introduced which makes them somewhat a distraction and a waste of time to read.

Most of the time it takes a chapter or two to flesh out a character which is a drag. I think this could be summarized better as we are not really moving plot wise.


The lizards are just mention in a single scene cameo and that is after 2 volumes from their introduction, I felt these characters should be at least have some more focus if the author spent time to flesh out their stories for one volume.


It is mostly assumed that his human psyche is being dominated by his undead body however I could never see it that way, his inner monologue never has him talking like an evil overlord at all, he is just a spineless human who is depressed from being abandoned in-game. Its not that he is becoming an Overlord he just can’t say no to his minions and tries to be an Overlord for them.


He still has emotions which I would think is suppressed because it was after all written there, then later he gets embarrassed and angry from riding a giant hamster. Further in Volume 7 he is enraged by some adventurers he lured, which he explains that his emotion is actually just cutoff after a certain threshold, meaning if he gets too emotional he loses the emotion which is retarded.

Don’t even try to explain the significance of him keeping that small town alive aside from the potion productions.


Overall you will have fun reading it but there are better stories out there. I am just keeping this low rating as a bitter reminder that this author and its editors I should shun in the future. <<less
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Viridius rated it
September 21, 2018
Status: v13 afterword
So Overlord is one of those novels that feels so vastly different from others that many people force their ideas of what a "good novel" is onto what was never supposed to be compared in the first place. Many of the lower ratings are due to this, not fully appreciating the charm of the story.

Overlord is a transmigration story about Momonga, who was the head supervisor of Ainz Ooal Gown, a guild composed entirely out of high-level non-humans and considered one of the strongest guilds in the game Yggdrasil. They... more>> killed countless attackers, a seemingly last-boss type organisation. After transmigrating, he himself adopts the name of the guild.

Right there. See that? That means Ainz is a villain. The story seems to center around the side characters, meticulously fleshing them out but sometimes just killing them off for "fun". Many reviews bash this style of storytelling, complaining about how much these dead characters were focused on. But this is intentional. Ainz is an antagonist to the many "protagonists" we see. The various characters on the side each can be considered a main character with their own story in their own right. We start to find the overarching plot within these. Many people appear to think that novels should work on developing the main character, and the main character only. Overlord does not do that. This makes the plot seem to trudge along slowly, but if you look at it from the perspective of each "side character", it starts to speed up. We read various short, fast-pace anecdotes of people each with their own unique personalities and circumstances, developing and furthering Nazarick's (Ainz and his companions') goals. This creates complex characters and world-building. The appeal of the story, like a premium wine, is enhanced and enriched by its slow pace. We savor every bitter, cruel, insidious moment for what they are, instead of thinking, "Oh, another side character died" like we would in countless other stories. Our sympathy and love of them makes Ainz the villain he is. The climaxes are accentuated by the gradual buildup; the structure of each volume generates rising tensions, furthering our excitement. The whole story reads like a fluid symphony, with different movements, different feelings, all coming together through one focal point: Nazarick.

This alone makes Overlord a story worthy of five stars.

However, many people seem to dislike the main character, and it's a reasonable thing to do. He gives the impression of a terrible leader to his capable subordinates: weak-willed, indecisive, and unintelligent. Yet, in my eyes, while it's not executed as well as it could have been, his apparent incompetence is what makes Ainz human. The story itself focuses on the various horrible things he does, building up each character just to be crushed or oppressed under his hand. However, most of the time we see him, he seems to not be the malignant evil he is in the eyes of others, but rather reminiscent of a child playing with goldfish. The goldfish may do various things to escape its grasp, but with minimal planning he easily squashes those plans with overwhelming power. And why would he not? It's clear he has absolutely no sympathy towards humans, as he himself is a different race. However, he can still grow close with them, like an owner grows close with his dogs. The author clearly wants us to realize that he is not deranged nor insane, but only slightly psychopathic. He does this through the various flaws that Ainz portrays while the focus is on him. While the recurring "As expected from Ainz" gag of his subordinates overestimating his capabilities is not something I particularly like, the rest of his antics are something I see the need for. If not for these, we would push him away as a terrible person and a despicable main character.

If you enjoy fast-paced, protagonist-centric novels, this is not for you. Reading this novel brainlessly is enjoyable, but at best makes it a mediocre tale. I believe this is what many of the lower-rated reviewers are doing. Overlord is outstanding: its world-building, character development, and plot perhaps makes it one of the best novels I have read to date. Therefore, do not be discouraged by the negative reviews. Overlord deserves the attention it gets. <<less
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animanaicT rated it
October 24, 2015
Status: --
The reactions of the characters and how they handled the situation is why I love it... God those usernames! yea... what did I expect from a mmo.
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captain crunch
captain crunch rated it
April 6, 2017
Status: v11
Rating: 4-4.5 stars, Translation: 5/5

(My reviews may sound negative, but I'm just listing reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers will enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience will enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience will enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some difficulty to... more>> read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]]

MC is a lonely salaryman whose only friends are guild members in landmark but aging VR dive game. He logs into the game on the day the servers close. He is alone in the final countdown hours, as everyone else has stopped playing. However, the game does not end, and MC cannot log out. MC, his guild hall, and the guild's numerous support NPCs appear to have been transported to another world. MC goes on an adventure to explore this world, look for other gamers, and protect his guild hall from potential dangers. The series is a transported to another world genre, has a magic fantasy world, demi-humans, politics/factions/nations, lots and lots of subordinates, some kingdom building in the later volumes, an OP MC, small and large scale battles, but no romance.

I may be biased, because Overlord is the first LN that I've read, and it got me into other JP and CN LN/WN. I started with the anime, and ended up wanting to know more, since the anime probably would not get any more seasons. The MC was different for me, because it was the first morally ambiguous and immediately OP MC I've seen. MC isn't particularly evil, but does or condones questionable actions to protect or enhance his guild. He retains all his skills, items, wealth, and guild hall/NPCs, which are OP in this new world. The subordinates are quite varied, and have interesting personalities. His attempts as a salaryman to lead OP NPCs-turned-into-real-beings/monsters is the source of most of the humor. I liked the journey of following MC along as he tried to understand this new world and crushing any obstacle he meets. My main issue is that the subject matter in some of the volumes were not as interesting as others. For example, v4 is about lizardmen. Quite a large portion is from their POV, and the author tried to show their lifestyle, but I couldn't relate to them and wanted to the story to move on. Another one is about focus. There are a lot of loose threads that are occasionally touched upon, such as the search for other players, or events in another country. The story might comment on some of them, but then ignore them for a very long time. Some readers might feel like the comedy starts to get old, as it is consistently about the same joke of the MC unable to return the advances of his female subordinates, or how he is a somewhat bumbling leader but usually accidentally succeeds, either by chance or because his subordinates are competent. Other readers might not like a villain character, or an automatically OP MC.

So, I am probably biased, but I think a large majority or more may enjoy this series, especially if they were a fan of the anime. There are some less interesting volumes, but I think most reader would still trudge through them.

Other thoughts: There are currently 11 LN volumes. #12 is rumored to be out in late summer/early fall of 2017. I didn't read the WN, but I heard that it is significantly different. The LN is now licensed, so it may be difficult to find all of the fan translations. <<less
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MagicPill rated it
December 9, 2017
Status: v12c1
Basically an OP antihero organisation led by a transported (or left behind I guess) undead king protagonist that was once a normal salaryman in Japan. The protagonist has compassion for the members, but not for life in general. A refreshing hypocrisy that fits the protagonists species.

What sells this novel for me is the interactions within said organisation, and with the normal people outside of it.

The side characters are just lovely, the twists resulting from their personalities and capabilities are what I look forward to in each new volume.
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janrrah18 rated it
December 1, 2016
Status: v11c5
One of my favourite LN!!!!! &Lt;3

For starters this is a pretty good LN IF you like the MC to be evil (except for the people in the guild), an OP character with many loyal servants willing to give up their lives for him, and most importantly how he is spectacularly misunderstood by people which is really amusing for me.

Don't expect romance element here.. Even so give it a read if you preference is more on serious read with fantasy setting sword and magic
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ThreePointsShort rated it
June 19, 2016
Status: v10c1
OP protagonist, virtual reality MMO, alternate fantasy world transfer, it seems just like any other light novel - SAO, Log Horizon, the list goes on and on. So what makes Overlord special?

Humanity. The protagonist, who goes by many names, had no friends or family in his real life and found solace in his online friends. But as they left him, one by one, he found himself all alone once again. Lost in his own melancholy, he speaks to himself, indulging in memories of the past, in the last minutes before... more>> the servers for the game shut down forever.

When he is transferred to another world, never, not once, does he ponder trying to return, nor does he ever wonder what is happening back on Earth. For him, it was always the game that was truly real - real life was just somewhere he had to work to keep himself alive and playing. And although he suddenly finds himself with an army of devoted followers at his fingertips, he still quietly aches for real companionship, not mindless devotion.

Unlike other typical LN MCs that end up in inhuman bodies (Rimuru from Tensei Shitara and the goblin from Re:Monster come to mind), Ainz isn't totally human on the inside and you can tell. His subordinates' disdain for human life is ever-apparent, and watching Ainz's personality slowly and subtly warp for the darker over the course of many volumes is one of the great pleasures of the series. While in the beginning, Ainz's human side would wrestle with his other desires, it's clear that Ainz is becoming less and less human - and inhibited as an overlord - as time progresses.

Overlord is not a perfect LN, but it's my favorite LN (and I've read a lot). Don't be put off by the OP MC tag - Ainz makes mistakes, he gets confused, and sh*t happens. He's not the calm, confident, domineering author self-insert you'd expect. True, there are very few moments when Ainz is personally in serious danger, and Nazarick generally annihilates all opposition. But if you want a thoughtful, engrossing, well-translated read, definitely give Overlord a try. <<less
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DeathGun rated it
July 4, 2018
Status: v9c4
K so for the dude below, ‘BrotherofHavoc’, like I don’t even know how I should start this off but,

please don’t be like those types of people, like for me and for the vast majority of the people who wrote these reviews (surprisingly, especially since its novelupdates) really do enjoy reading the novel and find it interesting if the novel has a rating of 4.7 stars

like I don’t really get where you come from at that the novel is “bad” and list reasons why people shouldn’t read them like, I’m... more>> just reading your list and wondering if you even think about what you’ve read and at least try to understand....

like since when had the people Ainz saved die?

and no sht there would be him going from an evil dude to a nice guy, like one he has to become one who’s not evil when he’s momon san to keep up the guise and two he was still a dam human bro, the only thing keeping him from not saving every suffering person is because he’s an undead, now possesses no human emotions (although sometimes he internally becomes nervous and frantic), and he has to keep up his act of being the supreme leader and rule of Nazarick and live up to the expectations of every being within including the guardians

also, ofc the author would have to focus the center on other side characters sometimes, like you know how boring the novel would be if it was always centering around our op asf mc? Like, you really want to just read about our MC just hunting down every monster in one hit or letting his opponent underestimate him and then completely obliterate their asses? No, that’s boring asf

And wtf do you mean there’s no challenge in this world whatsoever, like r u dumb? Or have you not been paying attention while reading. Ainz literally stated and confirmed that there were the world items in the new world, and the one that we were shown was able to mind control shalltear so wtf you going when your saying there’s no challenge at all. These fuqing world items could simply ignore level differences and defy common sense, even Ainz’s super tier magic

ofc he wouldn’t question albedo’s stalker attitude and stuff, he’s the one at fault anyways for changing albedo’s instructions into being “OBSESSED” with him, not that he knew he was going to have to put up with it, and because she’s like a child to him since every being in Nazarick were basically created by the 41 supreme beings, him and his friends.

And yes the plot is kind of confusing and a bit hard to understand but the general one is that Ainz is trying to gain a general understanding of the world that he was forced into, which he is completely unfamiliar with, and he wants to gain a solid foothold in the new world so he is able to protect the tomb of Nazarick from any potential threats, and also to find out if his friends were transported there too, or an other players

on that note, there is players, wth you think the people of the new world learned ‘tier’ magic from? The eight greed kings, the six great gods of the Slane theocracy, the minor gods, some of the thirteen heroes, and etc were all players........

and the way you’re wording and listing these things makes it sound like your making a statement that this novel is basically trash and that newcomers shouldn’t read it. And why’s that? Just because that statement is based on your own opinions doesn’t mean that you should go out of your way to say that it’s not worth reading, like you have to give others a chance to find out for themselves if it’s interesting for them or not, different people have different tastes, just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean others won’t, for example me,

so if you like an op character but written correctly, this is a great novel, centers typically around MC, although it does focus quite a bit on side characters but they all link up in the end to our MC, and in some way towards the plot of the story :p <<less
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SnoopyGM rated it
January 19, 2018
Status: v12
When you see a novel with 4, 7 rating and most top review is 5 star you know its good. Some people rate it 3 star or less, its cool they just never read 'real' novel and mostly glorified the mainstream novel with too many complicated sh*t like SAO that have plot make on the go (seriously its should just stop after ALO, after that just clusterf**k of BS). Anyway Overlord is different, its unique, not because its cool full of action or cool MC, but because all the plot... more>> is only just a build up. Build up of what you say? Of course 'sasugasm', the misunderstanding is the selling point of this novel, its meticulous, its cool, and importantly its funny.

Meticulous, so many detailed thing in this another world, so many secret, so many history and little got explored/leaked, you can feel the size of the information and for those who have adventurous soul, you can feel how good and vast this world and Yggdrasil world is. So many character with different personality that impact the story from many pov, you can feel how 'alive' they are. You cant read the story, maybe little but definitely cant predict all the storyline, its maybe kind of random but then BAM, its buildup to a point you just say wow.

Cool, yes its different world, its so vast and interesting if you play game you can feel how cool and interesting the setting is. When the MC fight you can feel and understand what he think also as a gamer. The fight is cool, every fight have a different sense of cool, but its very good and very logical, not just some kind of willpower bullsh*t but really the real logic, did you can solo 1 vs 1 Boss monster, logically no, but how about level difference of 70lv, definitely it got rekt.

Fun, those who rate this novel 3 or less definitely cant feel the fun part of the story, yes sometimes the MC is kind of stupid and the misunderstanding also stupid, but the whole story is a build up of the funny part of 'sasugasm'. What is sasugasm you ask? Its when the misunderstanding got the whole new point of funny, when the MC is praised as super genius even though he isnt, but how he can get to that point is the whole 'build up' and if you see it that way maybe he is genius in a way (luck).

I cant say too much too spoil the fun, but let me tell you this novel is an unique kind of masterpiece. As a person who read almost 100 different novel western and eastern, this definitely is one of the top that give me new kind of experience. Its unique, most 'top' (mainstream) novel sell how cool their MC or the heroine (s), but here none of that matter, the plot is the most selling point of this novel! Here you cant really say the MC is very cool, or the heroine is waifuable (weebo stuff), but you will feel how interesting the plot and how fun you can have when you read this. So for any kind of people, for any kind of age, I recommend this novel for all of you, feel the plot, feel the story, and got the fun, cause its what the story should be all about! Have a nice read. <<less
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Zackarotto rated it
June 2, 2018
Status: v13
Most of the time, this series has been an absolute pleasure to read. There are so many precious characters inside and out of Nazarick, and the absolute disparity between Ainz and everyone else in the world -- 4th tier spells are at the peak, 6th tier spells are mythical, and Ainz can cast 10th tier spells no problem -- is a delight. Every once in a while, we're exposed to some new low-level character's perspective, and we get to be reminded just how terrifying Ainz really is to everyone he... more>> meets, capable of killing them all with his unrestrained aura alone.

Some small spoilers follow:

I liked these novels more when the focus was more purely on expanding power through creative schemes, where Ainz tries to make Nazarick self-sustainable in this new world by recruiting apothecaries and having his alter-egos perform heroic deeds. In volume 4, when we first actually see Nazarick seemingly as a negative force on the world, threatening to annihilate the lizardmen, I was uneasy with where things appeared to be going, but the lizardmen ended up with a brighter future than they had before. A couple of those who died were even resurrected from death. "Okay, " I thought, "still a bit of a callous approach, but I can get on board." But then in volume 7 we had the explorers pointlessly tortured in Nazarick, and then most recently volume 12 & 13, which I didn't really care for much at all (despite liking Neia), as it's pretty much all war. I thought the point of the elaborate schemes was to conquer the world without Ainz and Demiurge swatting whole armies like bugs, but here they end up doing that anyway.

I also find it rather strange that we haven't seen any deeper insight into the NPCs' thoughts by now. They never even question the nature of their teleportation to the New World, or show any perspective on the changes, despite Ainz encountering obvious differences in the very laws of nature there. His followers are otherwise fully self-aware, and even have abandonment issues, but never directly wonder where their old creators are, or even if they're still alive, or how long it's been. I can obviously understand Ainz not trying to explain that he's a lame salaryman gamer, but to say nothing? He might have said that each of the Supreme Ones was like a great bodiless cosmic being, each having created a puppet body in order to conquer the world of Yggdrasil, and that due to whatever profound magic transported their guild, Ainz ended up with his consciousness stuck to the form he created, whereas his old companions would now have no way of finding him even if they wanted to. It's kind of sad as-is.

Sorry, that was a bit of a tangent. I still highly recommend Overlord, but I'm a little nervous about the future of the novels. I feel like there's no point to the current trend of iron-fisted conquering, as it's a foregone conclusion when Ainz is so powerful, and not suited to the overpowered protagonist genre. (For more on that, just look at the One-Punch Man manga). It's a very creatively built world, and I would rather see more low-key exploration of it. <<less
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PiCrazy31415 rated it
March 28, 2018
Status: v12 afterword
Honestly LOVE LOVE this book. Took a while before getting around to writing a review for Overlord, since I've mostly been thinking of it as an actual book instead of a light novel.

I would say this is probably the 2nd? Light novel I've ever read, so there's definitely some sentimentality there (right after the King's Avatar). Watched the anime, and after rewatching several times decided that I wanted to know more. I didn't regret it.

The MC is OP af, which is so satisfying. Plus he is OP from the start,... more>> so there's no cultivation and rank up BS at the beginning. And the side characters are all amazing and OP as well. I love seeing him dominate over the rest of the world, especially with his genius Demiurge and Albedo. I'm this satisfied even without any ostensible romance, which is a rarity. The comedic moments are great as well. I'm pretty addicted to this series (probably reread 3 times so far?), though volume 12 should be split with volume 13, so there's definitely some cliffhangers there. Looking forward to the next volume! <<less
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kkgoh rated it
March 17, 2018
Status: v11c4
Dark fantasy with decent premise, great world building and side characters, but somewhat poorly executed since they get way too sidelined by OPness of MC.
... more>>

The closest analogy would be a story about ants like a "A Bug's Life". There are interesting powerful ants, there are boring insignificant ants. We learn much about the ants' daily lives, societal interactions, power struggles, dreams/hopes/frustrations. Then one day, a big clueless bumbling elephant comes along and accidentally stomps on the ants without realizing it. No, not like Saitama from OPM where he contributes meaningfully to characters' lives. Just stomping on them.
Rinse and repeat for 13 volumes.

The light novel is the rewritten version of the web novel so it's a lot more fleshed-out. OK read for an almost 10 yr old novel. It's from the era of Jap novels where losers who become OP was still interesting and acceptable. But now in 2018 most readers have moved beyond that.
EDIT: Watch the anime adaptation as an accompaniment to the novel. At least you'll finally figure out what all those verbose descriptions really look like.

One of the original isekai (other world transportation) stories. The MC plays a VR game in its final days and finds himself transported into an unknown world, complete with OP RPG-type attributes. He brings with it his OP dungeon (Nazarick) and crew of bad-ass NPCs.

So so. One of the major failings in the novel, even after it was re-written. A lot of other reviewers pointed out the same flaws.

- MC is quite useless. A former salaryman who becomes ridiculously OP, but is still incompetent and foolish even at 13 volumes. Zero character growth, he continues to be plagued by insecurities and is mentally weak. Very similar to Mushoku Tensei, although he isn't that much of a complete loser.
The concept of an OP main character isn't bad if it's done well (One Punch Man). But again, we've moved past the era of loser MCs.
The joke of plot armor and bumbling strokes of genius is so repetitive that you're already expecting it.

- Author tried to add a darker side to MC where because he is an undead, his emotions get suppressed due to a buff/debuff and somehow becomes a psychopath. It was very poorly written since there was no proper transition (a lot of commenters have indirectly mentioned). At the beginning he's mowing down villains and being a good samaritan. Suddenly he becomes a retarded psychopath like Trump with nuclear launch codes.
Loss of emotional highs/lows does not EQUAL psychopath. That's a poor understanding of human psychology. Psychopaths are defined by complete lack of empathy. The fact that a debuff comes on whenever he experiences highs/lows means he can feel. Even if he was a loner in his past life, it doesn't automatically mean he should act out on a power fantasy. There's just no justification provided on how and why he becomes a psychopath, and at the same time still act like an awkward bumbling fool in his interactions with other people.

- MC has a team of amazing talent under him, but cannot seek their help to perpetuate the myth of his invincibility. Very inconsistent with the fact that none of his subordinates cares since their loyalty is programmed in. This all comes down to weird Jap culture of "face saving" even if everything goes to shit. Very weak concept to sustain the whole novel.

- Author decided to really embellish side characters (mostly ordinary residents of New World), devoting multiple MULTIPLE chapters to create their backstories, way more than ALL of the primary characters. I get that author wants to establish different POV for readers, to empathize with side characters and realize how a lot of them end up as pawns in larger schemes (inadvertent or not).
Here's the writing problem. When you devote an INSANE amount of content to obvious side characters that don't advance any plot before killing them off, then it's not Game of Thrones, it's just a stupid WASTE OF THE READERS' TIME. It's a confusion of who the main actors in a story really are. And worst of all, most of them are killed off because MC is just a bumbling fool, which just leaves a bad taste.

I'd encourage readers to check out "Dungeon Defense". That's how a proper, thoughtful Machiavellian isekai story should be written.
EDIT: I read that author was a HUGE fan of AD&D tabletop games and frequently played the role of Dungeon Master. That explains the character sheets at the end of chapters.
I applaud author's depth of detail and get his enthusiasm for developing characters, but it's overdone with little left for subtext. I'm no longer reading a story, just an insanely complex RPG.

This is where the novel shines. Great descriptions, epic battles, very well fleshed out. Illustrations are really impressive and create a dark fantasy atmosphere to go along with the novel's theme. The illustrator definitely sold this novel as much as the author. I guess marketing is (almost) everything.

Maybe this is a problem from that earlier generation of Jap novels, or perhaps most jap novels, but they tend to be ridiculously verbose and rambling. Multiple pages go on with characters expressing every thought in their head out loud with zero conclusion. I'm not sure what happened to good old subtext. Conversations fly back and forth with no indication of who is speaking.
It gets so incredibly annoying that I skim/skip through most of the conversations now.
I thought Chinese web authors were bad with verbosity since they are paid by the word, but this takes the cake. I'm not sure if Jap web authors are paid by the word either. <<less
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Chulloswag rated it
July 13, 2017
Status: --
Probably my all time favorite Light Novel. However, most of what I could say about has already been stated in other reviews. In any case, it seems like the few people that gave it a poor review kept harping on the same reason, the large amount of divergence from the MC's perspective. While I will agree that the fourth volume (my least favorite of the series) gave too much attention to minor, nonrecurring, characters, that alone can't take away from the fantastic world building and character development.

When I say character... more>> development, I am referring largely to the big cast of supporting characters within Nazarick and the surrounding countries, and getting chapters from their POV is anything but boring, because it shows us how the outside world views Ainz and his subordinates. Those who say the changing perspectives are detrimental to the story are either too impatient to properly enjoy Overlord, or become disconnected with it from not having a constant narrator. So if you prefer the typical fast paced, action packed, Shonen series, then you probably shouldn't read Overlord. However, if you enjoy stories with depth and detail, I would strongly recommend it. <<less
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