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Syntax_Error
Syntax_Error rated it
To Be a Power in the Shadows!
May 19, 2018
Status: c60
This novel is taking coincidence way to far. It's in a whole of level that nobody could comprehend anymore. The Plot felt like it was forced as if the world was literally rolling for the MC.

Trust me, your brain cells will commit suicide one by one per chapter... that is unless you read this novel under the pretext that its a COMEDY/HAREM NOVEL.

I did it and surprisingly despite my strict preference I came to like it in its own way.

If you're gonna criticize this novel strictly based from a... more>> profound criteria while saying that 'this novel is stupid', sorry to tell you but you are just making yourself look more stupid than the novel itself. There's no need to indicate the clear fact that this novel is stupid because if you look it thoroughly, it's easy to tell that being stupid is all within the novel's intention for the sake of comedy.

If you fully grasp that logic, then like me, you'll enjoy the novel.

In the end of the day, just don't treat this novel way too serious since it was designed just for laughs. <<less
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Syntax_Error
Syntax_Error rated it
That Person. Later on…
May 19, 2018
Status: c195
+ Acceptable as a Comedy Novel.

+ Initial Plot Concept is good that can hook you for anticipation but...

-... Unreasonable developments

... more>>
Spoiler

We got a mentally weak MC who decided to ran away from home after feeling heartbroken. The thing is, the destination where he afterwards settle in is off a mountain where very strong monsters reside and for some odd reason, he was oblivious with how dangerous that area is. However, in the end, he managed to adapt towards the environment up to the point that he got OP.

Can't you smell that? I can smell a lot of potentials. It could have go into many reasonable directions. The MC could have develop a new personality while residing in the mountain for an example. Or maybe at least developed a certain mindset due to experiencing hell in the mountain that would indeed made the novel much more interesting. I could go on but in the end the novel gloriously spit on all of those directions and instead choose the most unreasonable direction I could imagine.

For some unexplained reason, a particular Goddess suddenly started to sympathize him and decided to give him her blessing causing him to be OP. But honestly, WHY!? There are obviously a lot of people in that world who are experiencing more hell than him so why that f**k did that unreasonable Goddess suddenly got sympathetic to something so trivial and decided to blessed him out of all people?

Oh.. but it get worse... because she is not the only Goddess that, for no valid reason, was captivated by the MC.

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- Fails to at least become a good harem novel because most heroines, if not all, just blindly fell in love with him.

Spoiler

The f*cking Goddesses are good example. Honestly, I have much more trouble understanding them than those insane people from Dungeon Defense. There are also the princesses that fell in love with him without much sentiments. This could go on.

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- Constantly recycling flag framework.

Spoiler

After somehow managing to read until his reunion with his childhood friend, I can already see the plot framework that the novel constantly recycle.

{Meet new heroine > Interact more > Direct or Indirect 'Confession' > Run Away (due to a misunderstanding) }

Which later on became...

{Meet new heroine > Interact more > Direct or Indirect 'Confession' > [Insert Variation for the Sake of Plot]}

And then...

{Interact with Wives | Fight with Wives | Solve Conflict with Wives}

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- Sloppy world plot and progression. After His reunion with his childhood friend, the novel is basically dead.

Spoiler

Light Novel Version: Childhood Friend still loves him and became part of his harem.

Web Novel Version: Childhood Friend genuinely developed feelings toward the Hero which gave the MC a little character development as he moves on after finally confirming it.

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Syntax_Error
Syntax_Error rated it
Dungeon Defense
April 15, 2018
Status: v5 afterwords
Truly, a masterpiece from head to toe

But sad to say, it's not for everybody.

That may include

... more>> People who are moral fags

People who are fainthearted

People who have 'different' tastes & preferences

And most especially, people who fail or at least have difficulty in understanding sophisticated novels such as this; hence the number of people who poorly vote this novel.

Novels have their own intended purpose. In most cases, it's entertainment but Dungeon Defense is not one of most cases because it doesn't only limit itself from entertainment as it is an art. I gave this novel flat 5 stars not because it was flawless but because it done a excellent job in becoming the novel it intended to become.

Action (4/5)

It's just like what you would expect to a novel that tap in the concept of magic as well as the culture of medieval warfare and actions. Dungeon Defense basically pales against other action novels. It has no special qualities in this aspect except for the fact that the novel is only concern in looking at actions in military and political perspectives to help narrate the progression of the story in an exciting way. The way how the novel demonstrate action in these perspectives is quite refreshing after reading too much garbage.

Drama (5/5)

Generally, reading a novel isn't enough to fully savor the flavor of a novel. The problem that some novels have can be poor narration of the emotions it carries or lack of emotion. Fortunately, Dungeon Defense is outstanding enough in both regards however, most emotions that the novel carries cannot be fully understand by some people because the personalities of most characters in the novel is not within in scope of what they understand. It's naturally to have a negative attitude towards things that are outside of your scope of understanding similar to how a person rejects romance because he cannot understand such concept. Honestly, the novel has no severe fault, it's just that it's not for everybody.

However, if the emotions that the novel carries is within the scope of your understanding then you'll enjoy a huge part of what the novel has to offer. How the novel is aesthetically written truly made it possible for an emotional response to occur unlike other novels with flat style of writing. Even how some characters narrates the story with their own touch and gives dialog in their own way leaves a good taste. Of course, all these aren't possible without good written characters. All introduced main characters have admirable personalities and ideals with admirable background that makes their characters more or less valid so far since the novel has yet to finish in narrating some of the main characters' past. Monologues of Dan is the best part of the novel.

Spoiler

Example:

Elizabeth was initially apathetic to the whole world. It was implied that she was initially apathetic due to the world sloppy difficulty for her as a competent woman. However after she felt threatened for the first time by the Dan due to his schemes, she felt a lot of mix of emotions. She felt anger, upset, and unease despite also feeling happy and thankful.

"My life has become a single bliss. At last, my tomorrow was not going to be the repetition of today, and instead, be the day after today. Today, Dantalian had already fulfilled the promise that he had made me."

- Elizabeth (Vol. 3 Ch 6)

It's the same delightful feeling One-Punch Man would get after finding an equal or stronger opponent.

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Fantasy (5/5)

If I were to judge a fantasy novel, in most case, I judge it based on how innovative it introduce new compelling plot, systems or concepts, and as well as its depths in totality. Dungeon Defense plot may have nothing innovative but how it execute it made it so that it was worth reading. Even I'm amazed on how deep it can give on little to big details that perfectly tailors the world in stunningly ways despite having a simple premise - to survive from the original fate of the world as a Demon Lord. Even more so how it delivered it.

Harem (5/5)

There's definitely harem going on around Dan but it's still in early stage because female heroines in here aren't 2 Dimensional characters whom sole purpose is to merely feel in love with the MC. In fact, they are just as dangerous as Dan himself in a way.

What mainly made me judge this as a good harem novel is because of it's capability to think outside the box. When people say harem, what always comes in mind is a man surrounded by faithful ladies who are in love with him. The novel spits on that overuse concept. In Dan's harem, multiple ladies are attracted to Dan not because of faithful love, but because of other refreshing reasons.

In harem, what bounds female characters to an alpha male is "attraction". Attraction can come in many form, and love is one of the overused form of attraction commonly use in harem media. This novel done a great job in subtly putting emphasis on the thought that harem isn't only limited to blind romance and the likes.

Spoiler

Reasons why they are attracted to Dan

Lapis - "Love for Humanity"

Barbatos - "Currently Undefined"

Paimon - "Similar Ideology"

Elizabeth - "Destiny"

Humbaba - "Thankful"

Laura - "Adopted Daughter of Dan"

Ivar - "Currently Foreshadowed Only"

*Of course you wouldn't understand much with those words alone because the depths cannot be compact in simple words.

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Horror (5/5)

If its objective is to generally scare reader in whatever necessary perspective, the novel outright did an outstanding job in instilling horror of anticipation because though it may be easy to predict the overall outcome, it's hard to predict the process as well as some miscellaneous details that may be relevant in story progression. There's also the bone chilling but exciting horror of what the psychotic Dan would do in the future.

Mature (5/5)

The novel isn't afraid to touch daring topics and situations which made me even like it more. Mature content covers everything in this novel, from odd conversations to twisted situations. Even characters are no exception. Most characters introduced in the novel are twisted in their own rights but satisfyingly defined nonetheless.

The mature content created an appeal that just perfectly suit my taste.

Spoiler

Mature Examples:

  • Dan has an assertive perverted nature and is, in a sense, s*xually active with Lapis. He even tried to reinvent pornography during Vol 5.
  • Dan is really insane and twisted that is not understandable based on common sense.
  • Bartatos is also an extreme s*xual addict beast with weird "s*xual ideals" with Dan. I try not to reason with it especially since it's a habit that wasn't yet explained in the novel but I have my own theory.
  • Laura is a rape victim.
  • Unhesitating thoughts of murdering familial members such as parents by Dan, Lapis & Elizabeth.
  • The humor of the novel is mainly based on mature topics. Funny s*x jokes is one of them.
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Mystery (5/5)

Simply, an outstanding mystery novel. It shamelessly yet boldly controls and limits the information of narration of the novel through point of views (POV). Meaning, narration isn't omniscient. Though this, in return, made narration unreliable in a sense, it gave the novel a touch of mystery encouraging us readers to not only read but also interact with the novel. Interact in this context means that to examine and dwell in pass the surface of the novel and into its depths like reading foreshadowing, implications and likes.

Psychological (5/5)

The novel display enough psychological concepts which are often easily overlook and misunderstand in the novel. In this novel, psychological aspect is subtle but noticeable at most. Sometimes, it's direct like when Dan monologues the reason behind his behavior or the behavior of other characters. Sometimes, it's even more direct like when behavior is discuss in conversations. However, it also sometimes like to be more subtle than open. One example of this is Elizabeth apathetic. Another one is the effect of self-awareness. Human behavior for authority is also an example. Even the concept of insanity became the butt joke of the novel.

Romance (3/5)

Spoiler

You could say that this novel is also romance in it own way since Dan became genuinely in 'love' with Lapis. Obviously, it wasn't the kind of common faithful love as readers frequently encounter in novels we read. Its innovate concept of bonds and love is at most refreshing. I can't say much since harem is still in early stage and there might be future development that will change this rating. But based on what I read so far, the romance in the novel is lacking of screen time. It's not bad but not good either however that is to be expected when the novel almost intentionally treat it as side dish only.

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*Seinen more of a age rating than a genre in my context at least.

Bugs

  1. Game elements aren't frequently use anymore as the story progress.
    Spoiler

    Actually, it's obviously still being use behind the scene because that would be stupid. But the novel decided to narrate like so to symbolize that Dan is becoming less reliant on the game elements and more reliant on his skills alone. It's suppose to give such implication but most people seem tend to think of it as a flaw. Dan few times tried to use his in-game knowledge in practical use. One was when he tried monopolizing the cure of a plague. Another was when he blackmailed Ivar as well as when he scout Laura into his legion as acting general. Beyond that, he had actively rely on his wits, intelligence and skill to survive.

    [collapse]
  2. Too edgy
    Spoiler

    It means you didn't understand the novel itself. I could argue but I figure it would be pointless due to a concept called qualia.

    [collapse]
  3. Dantalian is too unrealistic as a character.
    Spoiler

    It may seem so but the degree of his personality is also to be expected when his past is utter crap in many directions. His family was apparently practicing harem. His mother is actively participating a fight against his other half mothers for attention for his father. Between this fight, he stood while being pointlessly involve. He is forced to top his class to make his mother gain more attention from his father. He educated himself and honed his mental capability to survive his daily struggles in home and in class. He also got kidnapped frequently by men hired by his half mothers. He used to weekly go to church to pray for a God up in the sky but was left forsaken. He had no one to rely and depend on. It's obvious that that's just the novel mildly putting it in perspective. Adding that to the fact that Dan is a talented individual, if you asked me, Dan personality and capability is reasonable enough. If you doubt such talent then you should try looking at the talented people of our worlds. Beside, Dan developed in such "absurdity" because he had sharpen his talent to the fullest through mainly experiences undoubtedly. The novel may have not narrate the exact details of his past, but to allow as readers to fill in the gap with our imagination is also a narration technique used by novels in the past.

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  4. Antoganists are extremely potent.
    Spoiler

    I also agree but I think it's a little to early to dismiss it as unreasonable since it doesn't give justice for the later volumes to come that might explain or imply such development. But I have my own personal theory for such development.

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  5. Dantalian is inconsistent.
    Spoiler

    Dan had never been inconsistent. It just that, you got the wrong early impression of him. Since he was 1 years old, the thing he prioritize the most is having a life where he can be a bit lazy. Followed by this is his desire for authority since he was 6 years old. Dan would definitely prefer to shut himself in but circumstances won't allow him especially since Demon Lord are originally fated to be defeated. So what he does after Volume 1 is to actively participate a massive war and gain more authority to survive. This is the basic of the method his choose since gaining and using authority is what he is best at. He can't peacefully spent his NEET life as a Demon Lord when he knows what the Demon Lords original fate is, can he now? The wikia will also imply otherwise.

    Another thing that some people don't understand is the inconsistency that played in Volume 2. It was all due to him falling in love to Lapis. This wasn't due to common love but rather it was because of his love for his own kind. One where there is no compromise but only love, respect and admiration. It's similar to how a musician with classic taste would feel to another identical breed of musician. Only, Dan's case is much more agitated because the case isn't as simple as classic music but authority being a priority in life. Dan had never meet a woman who is also an authority sick head like him. Due to this, Dan's action became noticeable inconsistent in Volume 2 but Dan was completely oblivious with it because he was ignorant of the fact that he had already fallen in love. This was so because he was very ignorant with the concept of love until he realized it and rearrange his thoughts for safety net.

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  6. Characters introduced in the novel are mostly insane.
    Spoiler

    That is the case but it's not like the world of the novel is mainly compose of insane people. There are also some characters that are perfectly sane and I won't spoil who. It's only a matter of who the novel will give value to as an important character and introduce to the readers. It just so happen that these characters are insane. I also would like to say that there's a deep implication behind this flaw that people think of but It's just my own thought.

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  7. Pacing is bad
    Spoiler

    People think so because the novel often put seemingly pointless descriptions and due to this, the pacing of the novel slow down. Pacing is not bad, it's just intentionally slow so that the reader can fully savor the taste of events occurring within the novel. Either that or the novel was trying to imply something or aesthetically put emphasis on something. I for one enjoyed the novel in this pacing.

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Syntax_Error
Syntax_Error rated it
The Strange Adventure of a Broke Mercenary
April 15, 2019
Status: c74
Title itself already tells the story...

It's about the Strange Adventure of a Broke Mercenary

What can we make up of this?

- MC is a broke ex-mercenary who became an adventurer.

- The story is about his strange adventures as an adventurer.

Spoiler

These Include:

Vol. 1

    • Joining a party of inexperience adventurers with questionable harem
    • Meeting a sly, smart and sassy demon kin who is disguised as a priest of knowledge
    • Witness first episode of f**king goblins slayer
    • Ancient Ruins
    • More goblins
    • Typical life and death situations
    • Failing a quest and becoming more broke
    • Getting used by the said demon kin as an agreement to pay his financial debt to her
    • Becoming a companion of the said demon kin as an agreement to pay his financial debt to her

Vol. 2

    • Getting used again by said demon kin
    • Encountering a loli
    • Doing a quest for said loli
    • Doing the said quest with slightly better adventurers with questionable harem
    • No scope a typical arrogant hero
    • Create flag to said loli
    • Teaching said hero masochism
    • Undead Dragon and Zombies
    • Dying Light Adventurers Edition?
    • Loli becomes MC lil' bitch fairy

*All of these are more or less


exaggerated

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Basically...

It's Berserk but less dark and emotional depth.

It's Goblin Slayer but less goblins and waifus.

The only thing that made this novel refreshing is that MC is a seasoned and experienced mercenary. We get to see the perspective of a mercenary when becoming an adventurer. We get to see him apply his own values and principles he learned as a mercenary to his adventures. At least that was suppose to be the premise. The novel does somewhat accomplish this hence my rating but it's lacking in emotional depth so it was difficult to connect much with the MC.

For most people, the thing that essentially bother them is the personality of the MC.

    • Too gullible
    • Too passive
Honestly, I'm also one of these people but it's important to know that our MC is mercenary. He was not even the leader of his group. That said, I think it would be more out of place if he wasn't that gullible and passive because he only follows orders back in his prime and never ask anymore question because they were paid solely to follow orders. He only goes to the flow of what the leader decides and from there, he tries to work thing out in his own mercenary-like way. It bothers me but it can't be helped because he is after all a mercenary who used to only follow directions. The only difference is that he is one experienced and seasoned mercenary. Realizing that, I can't help but see him as a realistic character that doesn't betray his history.

As for the personality of the main heroine, she's likable but I can't help but question her intentions. She must have an arc dedicated for her in the future so that's something to look forward. The trope that force them to become companion is quite refreshing if you look in to it. As for their adventures, it may not be innovative nor does it have the best execution but it's satisfactory enough since it's not that bad.
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Syntax_Error
Syntax_Error rated it
I Reincarnated For Nothing
August 17, 2018
Status: c20
The premise of the novel was promising at most but poor execution of plot left me disappointed.

I may be rating it to early but I can't stand the torture of reading this plain novel anymore.

I understand that the novel is designed to be comedic but its humor is too bland for my taste. I don't recall laughing even a single time when I was reading this two-dimensional novel with its one-dimensional characters.
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Syntax_Error
Syntax_Error rated it
Goblin Slayer
May 21, 2018
Status: v4
The novel definitely deserve a high rate but not perfect.

Though side characters don't have any huge depths, they aren't bad as well since most of them, if not all, are distinguishable in a rather likable way as they interact to each other.

MC is very likable in its own way. He isn't OP but he try to get things done resourcefully, efficiently and sometimes creatively in his own way which makes action compelling when he is involve. He has a light, if not severe, case of autism and the novel repeatedly... more>> use this as sub-plot instance which you will eventually get feed up.

The plot is simple but it's not that bad. Though it may be simple, it done a great job in portraying a dark fantasy world. I may have labeled it dark fantasy but it's undeniable that it still has its good sides as well such as bonding chapters (in v3 & v4). The plot feels so flat because it lacks aesthetic and drama (emotion). Action in the novel may be engaging but any other than that is plain and almost boring because MC is only 'specialize' in action. Though his autism can create enjoyable moment of interaction, it's easy to get feed up by it. The 'simple' plot is not helping either in the later run.

THE START IS GOOD AND FRESH BUT IT SLOWLY STARTED TO BECOME REPETITIVE AFTER v2.

One more thing, the novel didn't gave each person a name and it really bothers me. Though it did it with intention for its own way of narrating, I often times subconsciously feel that all characters are flat because of it. <<less
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