Shadeslinger (Ripple System Book 1 of 2) by Kyle Kirrin
A multi-millionaire buys every slot of an exclusive 3-day pre-release event that allows one to enter a new VRMMO early in order to be the only player to make use of this advantage. This makes the creator of the game absolutely despise him, who subsequently tries to sabotage his playthrough by giving him a uniquely useful item that drops upon death, hoping this will result in a game-wide manhunt. This item also just so happens to be a talking axe that hates the protagonist’s chosen playstyle and is programmed to antagonize him.
The humour in this is great, the talking axe has a fantastic personality. There’s also a talking smart home who is an utter delight and the protagonist’s interactions with either of them are just really fun. Overall plot is like a very story focussed MMO with lifelike NPCs that are more fleshed out than some human characters in other books. The levelling, fights and magic system are also fun to follow.
Really recommend this one, very well written multifaceted characters, engaging story and book 2 just released so I will continue this series right away.