A Late-Start Tamer’s Laid-Back Life, Vol. 9

By Yuu Tanaka and Nardack. Released in Japan as “Deokure Tamer no Sono Higurashi” by GC Novels. Released in North America by J-Novel Club. Translated by A.M. Cola.

If you read this series to watch it tick boxes, this is a very good volume. As you can tell from the cover, we get to tick the box ‘beach episode’, as Yuto and his tamed monsters get to dress in swimsuits for the beach (though apparently the non-human ones have to wear one-piece suits, presumably so we don’t have to deal with penguins in bikinis) and also got to have their very own Jurassic Park event on an uncharted desert island (which, of course, he manages to complete by himself purely on instinct and luck, something which absolutely boggles the mods). Admittedly, he doesn’t come out unscathed, as there are two sacrifices for the cause… but this is a fluffy game, so when the tamed monster dies they just literally go back to the ranch. There’s no end goal to this series at all – it ends when Yuto’s two-week vacation finishes and he has to go back to being a salaryman again. The fluff is all there is.

It’s time for the Summer Event, which means Yuto and his crew get to hang out on beaches, go fishing, and try to fill up an encyclopedia of animals and insects. This is right up Yuto’s alley, as he is exactly the sort of nerd that went looking for rhinoceros beetles as a kid, though the rest of the tamed crew are a bit less enthusiastic. He also gets to (after many attempts to get past a strong current blocking the player from advancing) to an island that has prehistoric life, ranging from rare fossils to tyrannosaurus rexes to raptors straight out of that movie that dare not speak its name. (Sadly, it’s not WcRassic Park.) Unfortunately, Yuto is not really powerful enough to take on a t-rex, especially when they also come across a huge brachiosaurus. Nothing left to do but get killed… or is there a way to beat this using smarts? And what effects will accidentally streaming everything have on the event?

It’s getting increasingly hard not to call this series “the male Bofuri”, and if Maple kept to herself and got a few more animal friends, they’d basically be the same. Yuto is not trying to break the game, he just keeps doing it. It’s not just that he happened across the one way to actually win the dinosaur battle without a party wipe, it’s that he accidentally streamed it so that EVERYONE ELSE also knows. He didn’t even have to give the info to the increasingly despairing info brokers this time around (though rest assured, he still has plenty of info, and it’s still breaking their bank to buy it.) But Yuto is not really trying to get involved in major game stories. He’s here to try to catch a coelacanth, or get back to shore before he has to pay extra on his fishing boat. Like Maple, he’s simply a game-breaking force of nature, and if the teaser for the next book proves true (think sunken pirate gold), that won’t change. Looks like the head developer will have to get a divorce.

So yeah, this has no plot, and it’s never going to. It has no romance. Hell, it barely has friendships – Yuto doesn’t really hang out with other players this volume. But it’s fun. I like it.

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