God and Devil World
April 22, 2017
I gave this novel a 3.0 rating before, but now I would like to change it to 1.0 because I found that the writing got worse later on.
Why do I say that?
Well, I LOVED it at the beginning. When the zombie outbreak happened and he's running around killing zombies and saving people. The ideas were fresh. I found the leveling system to be interesting and I got excited when the zombies started dropping Skill Books and Treasure Boxes.
I loved how Yue Zhong organised the group and I loved the way
he drove out the useless hanger-ons. He's right. If you can't contribute to the survival of a group, then you don't deserve to be in it.
Anyway, Yue Zhong and Qi Qing Wu fought right at the beginning and they were rewarded for their courage. That's great. Loved that bit too. Hard work and courage should be rewarded.
BUT... BUT then things got kinda stale 500 chapters later. The author used the same plot every single time. Yue Zhong came. He saw. Then he conquered. It's true that every city he conquered were cesspits of corruption and the leaders totally deserved to be removed because they were useless and corrupted, but things got kinda repetitive.
Also, I kinda got sick and tired of Yue Zhong's behavior during the Vietnam and Japanese story arcs.
I felt like I was reading propaganda material written by a Communist Party official instead of a fantasy web novel written by an independent web novelist.
In Vietnam, almost all Vietnamese were portrayed as racist murderers out to kill all Chinese. And Yue Zhong felt justified in killing thousands of Vietnamese. A majority of Vietnamese killed by Yue Zhong did murder Chinese nationals but there were many Vietnamese who probably did not hurt the Chinese living in Vietnam. But it's okay. They were Vietnamese so Yue Zhong did not think it's necessary to treat them like, you know, real people.
In one chapter, he marched up to a village and kill the village head without even bothering to negotiate with him first. Yue Zhong simply want the resources in that village. So BANG! The village head died. Why? Because. Don't ask. Shut up and eat your dinner.
Later when he went to Japan, he immediately ran into unrealistically 2-dimensional Japanese survivors. Upon seeing Yue Zhong, they tried to drive him away from their village and started talking about the Diaoyu Islands dispute with China.
For real? Really? Does this author really think that's how Japanese people behave? Has he even visited Japan before? Has he even left his house to interact with real humans before?
That scene was too unrealistic. I mean, look. Look here, author-san. Put yourself into the shoes of a real human born in Japan. The world changed into a Resident Evil scenario a year ago. Your neighbors, family members and friends turned into flesh-eating zombies. You suddenly became a RPG character and gained strange game-like abilities. And yeah, starvation was nigh.
And the first thing that popped into your mind after meeting a Chinese national in this strange new world was the Diaoyu Islands dispute??? Really? Really really?? Really really really???
There's a limit to my patience, you know. I can put up with all sorts of bad plot developments and idiotic story characters, but when you go all out to make your characters as 2-dimensional as possible, that really pisses me off.
Having just finished reading Chapter 539, I can no longer consider this to be a sci-fic fantasy novel anymore. It's just nationalistic propaganda. And as a Chinese person myself, I am really tired of State propaganda. Even if you add in zombies and game elements, propaganda is still propaganda and I can't enjoy it.
Oh yeah, that's not all. The author introduced way too many characters! I can't keep up with all the characters! I can barely remember the core characters who were with Yue Zhong from way back when! Who's Lu Wen? Who's Guo Yu? Who's who? I can't even remember the name and skills of that school girl he saved from a certain group of bandits. Because there were way too many school girls and bandits in the story! Before introducing new characters, please develop the old ones first! Properly and patiently, to ensure that your readers do not forget the core members of Yue Zhong's team.
In conclusion, mainly (99%) because of all the nationalistic propaganda and partly because of the huge mess of secondary characters, I can only give this novel a 1.0 rating. Unfortunately, I gave a 3.0 rating several days ago and I can't change it now.
And it's really unfortunate that I have to give such a low rating. Because the novel had a really good start. When I reached Chapter 10, I gave it a 500.0 rating. It was that good. I felt that I had to give it the highest available rating (5.0) and multiply it by a hundred! But then the nationalistic crap started happening... And when I started reading the Vietnam arc story, the 500.0 rating dropped to 3.0. And when Yue Zhong arrived at Japan, it dropped to a lousy 1.0 rating.
Finally, I have one advice for readers who absolutely love novels with gaming elements. You can try Gate of Revelation. It's also written by a Chinese author and it also has an English version. It also contains gaming elements (such as the Leveling system). The difference is that there's none of that nationalistic propaganda that you find in God and Devil World. And the core characters do stick together even when new characters are introduced, so it's less confusing to read.
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