* Interesting premise.
* Good beginning of the story, but looses steam around Chapter 100 or so.
* Writing is generally good.
* Play of politics is well depicted.
* Author tries to be too smart, and dumps in scientific terms at random. He tries to depict manufacturing process in detail, but it just becomes tiresome to read all the pointless pseudoscience.
* MC must have an IQ of 3000000000 bazillion. In his previous life he just had a desk job, and in this new life he is Chemist, Civil Engineer, Mechanical Enginner and a Great General, all in one.
* Everyone on MC's side has a IQ of 200000 Million. Despite the fact that they are barely literate, MC's subordinates are grasping the knowledge that usually takes 10 years in mere 2 months!
* Only women can do magic. Feminist much?
* MC is kick-starting mankind progress. What took 2000 years, MC is doing it in 6 months.
The world building is excellent. Brutal nature of the world is excellently demonstrated, not by telling - but by showing. From the start when Gu Shenwei's family is wiped out, to when Long Feidu appears - everything points to the bleak, harsh nature of the world.
The story seems to be a succession of incidents, there don't seem to be any story arcs, so the story seems a little disjointed.
The author has mastered the art of writing cliffhangers, but too much of a good thing can turn into a bad thing!
Writing and plotting is excellent. There are plots within plots, and even the MC doesn't know all of them. It is at least 10 times better than other two mage novels I mentioned above. There is plenty of intrigue and clever people, this keeps things interesting.
The cheat that the MC has is hilarious - a talking computer inside his brain which only likes to trash talk the MC. MC isn't a selfish ret*rd like TWW or WMW. He cares about his family.
In the end, it is still only a power fantasy. No character development, no romance.
Combat isn't very interesting.
New system of cultivation, name of characters are intriguingly take from real historic figures (such as aristotle) or Egyptian/Greek mythology
Ze Tian Ji is the best LN I have read, bar none. The authors of novels like WQDK, BTTH are not real writers, they are just posing as one. Even the author of Release The Witch fails to reach the level of a real writer. The author of Ze Tian Ji, however, is a real writer.
The writing is masterful.
The characterizations are great.
The battles are suspenseful and well written.
The MC doesn't have a cheat item. He doesn't have crazy cultivating talent. His meridians are damaged. His specialty is not his comprehension, nor his battle prowess. His specialty is his character. He follows the dao of his heart.
The MC isn't a mass murdering retard. Upto now (Chapter c396) he has only killed 5-6 people, and that too because if he didn't, MC would have died himself.
His opponents are not retards either. They are pretty smart and use their heads. They have their own motivations!
It is not a (I your father/No, I your grandfather) type of novel, sorry.
The writing is in the top tier of Xianxia novels, to which the writers of (Desolate Era, True Martial World etc) can only hope to reach some day. The world building is excellent and description of some places (The temple of doom, ruins if immortal sect etc) is downright awesome.
On the downside, there is fair amount of MC worship (although its because of MC's great deeds), all the standard Xianxia tropes are there (cultivation competitions, MC defeating opponents with higher cultivation levels, etc.)
There are some idiot reviewers who review ISSTH badly because it doesn't have a lot of romance, well duh, its not a Mills and Boons novel, romantick fellow! There are others who feel that there is too much Coughing up blood, well, I take it you haven't read any other Xianxia novels. All of them have a truckload of coughing up blood and snorting. There are others who feel MC is too OP. Of course he is, Sherlock. This is a Xianxia novel after all.
* The world building was great, at least initially. The concept of spirit rings and spirit masters and hunting monsters for spirit rings was new and cool.
* The writing and fights were good initially.
* It is not a (I your father/No, I your grandfather) type of crap-shoot which novels like Emperor's Domination are.
* MC is not a mass murdering psychotic nut case.
* Plotting is very weak.
* The whole novel devolves into MC worship, it almost feels like the author's is taking every chance to put his MC on a pedestal and worshiping it.
* The writing becomes bland and boring later on.
* The MC is so OP, he has already defeated the main Villain TWICE, and there are still 40 more chapters to go! There is zero interest left in reading the novel now, so why will I read the rest of 40 chapters?
Both WMW and WW don't have any plot or pacing, they are just a series of disjointed incidents, written by kids who don't know how or what to write.
In Age of Adepts, the skill of the author is much higher. Greem is the main character, who came from the earth to a plane where magic exists. His cheat, although very strong, is not overwhelming. Greem, though strong, is not so OP that he is killing everyone and everybody. He has to use his wits to survive. He plots and kills, but he isn't actually evil to his friends. And he has friends!
The author tries hard to be realistic, but not too hard, since it is obvious that the author never bothered reading any book on biology.
The elderly people are all very dangerous and are considered very evil, but in reality, they are nice people who dote very much on Qin Mu. First part of the novel (Chapter 100) is really enjoyable, and centers on eccentricities of the villagers and the dangers of the great ruins.
Then Qin Mu becomes the Master of the Heavenly Devil Cult, and the story rapidly goes downhill. After the first 100 chapters, the story is literally an uninteresting mess, with no real direction. It seems to have only one aim - how to glorify Qin Mu somehow.
As of chapter 78, the MC murdered a fellow fluxer for no other reason than he could, which is why I quit reading.
The writer manager to create an interesting world with an interesting cultivation system. And even used comedy very well in the beginning. Suddenly, however, his MC turned in to a Yun Che/Li Qiye style pyschotic mass murdering retard. Meh.
* Writing isn't bad and the MC is not a mass murdering retard.
* Story starts of very well, with emphasis placed on martial arts and excellent battles,
* Battles have become very bland and very boring.
* The novel right now has devolved into MC worshipping:
Jiang Chen. Chen. Jiang. Jiang Chen. Chen? Jiang!? Jiang Chen. Jian Chen. Chen. Jiang. Jiang Chen. Chen? Jiang!? Jiang Chen. Jian Chen. Chen. Jiang. Jiang Chen. Chen? Jiang!? Jiang Chen. Jian Chen. Chen. Jiang. Jiang Chen. Chen? Jiang!? Jiang Chen. Jiang Chen.
Every one is bending over to lick MC's boots and as you can see, its not very interesting.
Nie Li cultivated to a very high realm, then fought the evil Sage Emperor and got killed. Reborn, Nie Li uses his knowledge of future and cultivation to get powerful enough to get his revenge!
Like most reincarnation xuanhuan novels, TDG is formulaic, bland, and frankly, boring.
Main character is not a mass murdering psychotic retard, unlike a lot of other novels. He has a harem, but he doesn't go acquiring more harem babes randomly, so its a minor improvement.
Many. It shares all the lame formaulae found in a typical Xuanhuan, such as: Dumb Young Masters, Arrogant Seniors, hero has a cheat item, everyone except the MC is dumb and cannot see the threat posed by the Sage Emperor, Plotting is not existent, weak writing, and so on.
If you like this type of novels, then better alternatives are available, such as HSSB and SOTR. If you prefer reading the best Wuxia/Xianxia, then try: Nightfall, Ze Tian Ji, Death Sutra, AWE, and Pivot of the Sky.
There is nothing really good in the novel, sadly.
There is nothing strikingly bad either.
The problem with this novel is that there is nothing interesting in it. The world building is non existent, the cultivation is meh, the writing skill is below average. The other problem is that the writer is inexperienced, so he tries to shoehorn a good guy hero into a monster. The hero doesn't kill people at the press of button. But the author also wants to show that the hero is demonic so he writes a lot of drivel about red eyes and evil cultivation technique requiring human blood.
The world building was fairly good early on, and how Chu Han dealt with things was mildly interesting.
Inconsistency. Chu Han started off being a nice sort of person. In order to make him seem cool and badass, the writer changed his personality into a indifferent person. This didn't seem to satisfy the writer though. Circa chapter 116, Chu Han suddenly turns into a homicidal nut case - he kills a bunch of people just because he could.
Worse still, each woman that comes into contact with him totally joins his harem, and become his bitches. Even the lone guy in his team is his b***h too.
All the standard tropes of a Chinese Novels are there - including the Dumb young lords.
* The MC is a 'realist', doesn't charge in battles like a ret*rd to randomly fight a higher level enemy, so its a change.
* Magi system is interesting.
* World building is mildly interesting.
Not So Good:
* Author seems to be confused as to what kind of MC he is writing. Mostly the MC is downright evil, killing people who have no enmity with him. Other times he will randomly save somebody.
* AI Chip cheat is random, it is seemingly able to do random things, and author keeps adding new capabilities.
* Combat is boring.
* The story is bland, with nothing real that drives the MC forward.
* MC, who is supposedly a street smart realist, will allow his companions to die in a battle, in order to reap the rewards later. Except that that is a stupid thing to do, in an unknown situation you never know what new trouble you may face, so smart people will try to maintain the strength of their group...
Writing is good, at least initially.
Opponents of MC are not retarded. They know when to attack and when to run.
Initially MC is not crazy overpowered & doesn't go on murderous rampages, killing everyone in sight.
Writing becomes repetitive, half of the time it is Yan Zhaoge giving sermons and explaining things.
Yan Zhaoge NEVER suffers a setback. He ALWAYS wins at ALL TIMES in ALL CIRCUMSTANCES. He knows everything, all plots, all formations, all alchemy, all history. This makes it boring, and very similar to a standard Xianxia novel. But then, if I wanted to read crap like Battle Against The Heavens or Emperor's Domination, why would I come here?
The translator of the novel is right - the novel suddenly gets much better around Chapter 50. Unfortunately, the quality takes a nosedive after chapter 200. I won't say it is as bad as WQDK/ ATG/ BTTH, but it is close.
The plot of the novel revolves around humanity's struggle for survival as underdogs - always a plus in my opinion! Its only later you find out how much of underdogs they are. The fights are fun, and the MC doesn't always get an easy win. Best of all, there is a mystery - who is the traitor of the Swords Gate? The needle of suspicion falls first on this person, and then on another...
The novel has its share of cliche elements: The fearless hero, the dumb young master, the MC massacring his opponents from other races, MC suddenly acting brashly and killing people, MC getting all the good stuff, all the cultivation hotties having hots for the MC, and so on.
*The MC is a 'realist', doesn't charge in battles like a ret*rd to randomly fight a higher level enemy, so its a change.
*Magi system is interesting.
*World building is mildly interesting.
Not So Good
*AI Chip cheat is random, it is seemingly able to do random things, and author keeps adding new capabilities.
*MC is reincarnated, but that doesn't get into play here, at all.
* The story is bland, with nothing real that drives the MC forward, except that he wants to be a wizard.