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captain crunch
captain crunch rated it
Skeleton Knight, in Another World
January 13, 2017
Status: v4c21
Synopsis: See above.

Features: OP MC seems to be maxed w/o leveling, skills/magic combat, magic beasts, demi-humans, factional politics/scheming, fantasy world, RPG transmigration, semi-adventuring. No romance/flirting so far, no nation building, no large scale combat.

Translation: 5/5
[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional serious grammar errors, may need to reread sentences, but no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning, but no loss of overall story. 2/5 = difficult to read, difficulty understanding parts of scenes. 1/5 entire scenes unreadable.]]

Recommendation: 3-3.5/5
Some... more>> aspects of the writing and story are good, but then at the same time may not interest some readers. It's got a good setting and beginning. Typical transported to fantasy RPG game-world story. There's plenty of action. It's straightforward and doesn't beat around the bush too much. The problem is the scope of the story and the MC's role. The last sentence of the synopsis tells you everything: "The protagonist wanted to live without drawing attention, but he got acquainted with the dark elf Ariana and received her request." The MC has no major goals, making the story a bit pointless. The few that he has, they are like afterthoughts. He doesn't really even pursue them, he just works on them if opportunities happen to come along. He is like a sidekick to his companion, Ariana. Without her, he would just wander around, occasionally doing minor adventuring tasks or intervening in random incidents forever. With her, he participates in someone else's larger story. It feels like slice of minor adventuring life. Mostly small events that add up to affect larger players. Not very exciting.

This is a major problem, and would make the rating as 3/5 stars, as I feel half of the readers would be OK with it, and half would quickly lose interest. However, I think the writing is good enough that some of those who wouldn't enjoy this series so much would feel it wasn't a waste of time, so maybe the rating would bump up to 3.5 for some readers.

Another less serious issue is that the word "skeleton" is in the title. However, it's not that big of a deal in the story. As suggested in the synopsis, and explained right away in chapter 1, the MC bought this skeleton skin that goes over his player character. All it does it makes it inconvenient for his body to be seen by others. There's no underlying mystery. It doesn't affect his role in the story. What MC does about this is one of his main but halfhearted goals/considerations.

This story, and half of these transported to RPG world stories, also suffers from the lack of MC's pre-story life/personality. Nothing is said about MC before the transportation, and his previous life plays no role in how he behaves or deals with challenges. What is the point of making this a transportation genre if what happened before the transportation is never addressed, other than being a plot device to explain why MC is so OP or a fish out of water? [[5 star = most readers will enjoy, the rest will probably not think it a waste of time. 4 star = majority of readers will enjoy, but the rest will be hit or miss whether they thought it was worth their time. 3 star = hit or miss on whether a reader will enjoy, hit or miss for whether anyone thought was worth their time. 2 star = a niche audience might enjoy, the rest will probably find it not worth the time. 1 star = even the niche audience may not enjoy.]] <<less
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captain crunch
Synopsis: This is about someone reincarnating (?) into the child version of a nobility side villain character of a magic academy Otome RPG that he has prior knowlege of. His character is supposed to lose his status and wealth at the end of the game, so he plans to avoid this ending by taking up a blacksmithing profession, improving his fiefdom, and influencing relationships. The first volume summarizes his childhood, blacksmith skill acquisition, and some economic reforms in his lands. The 2nd and 3rd are slice of life in the... more>> magic academy.

Genre/Features: I think it's a reincarnation; it's very unclear. But the reincarnation doesn't seem to have any purpose, other than MC wanting to avoid a bad ending. There is very little explanation of his past life or the game itself. The crafting/blacksmithing plays has very little purpose in the story. MC does some training as he preps for the academy. There is very little combat. The world appears to be typical RPG fantasy world, but almost nothing of it is described, and almost no interactions with fantasy races or creatures. The slice of life happens at school. There is some romance in the 3rd chapter, as this is an Otome RPG. No harem so far.

Issues: The first volume was poorly written, like reading a child's diary. "Today I did this, this guy said that, next month I went there. That was nice. 6 months later I did this." Some of the scenes last a few sentences then suddenly move months ahead with no transition. The reincarnation and blacksmithing don't seem to have any purpose. Very little is described about the new world, or the characters themselves. The characters just appear and say things, I don't know their personalities or what they even look like. The 2nd and 3rd volumes are slice of life at the magic academy. The characters are a little bit fleshed out, scenes last longer than a few sentences. There is finally some progress regarding MC's original goals of surviving the Otome story.

Translation: 5/5
[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional serious grammar errors, may need to reread sentences, but no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning, but no loss of overall story. 2/5 = difficult to read, difficulty understanding parts of scenes. 1/5 entire scenes unreadable.]]

Recommendation: 2 stars
I think this is supposed to be Otome magic high school, with the MC trying to avoid bad end while attending as a very minor villain character. V1 is poorly written. However, some dedicated slice of fans might like V2 and V3. Anyone expecting some complex scheming, serious magic, or fantasy fighting or races should avoid this. Not sure why this is called Blacksmith when the blacksmithing activities play a minor role in the story.
[[5 star = most readers will enjoy, the rest will probably not think it a waste of time. 4 star = majority of readers will enjoy, but the rest will be hit or miss whether they thought it was worth their time. 3 star = hit or miss on whether a reader will enjoy, hit or miss for whether anyone thought was worth their time. 2 star = a niche audience might enjoy, the rest will probably find it not worth the time. 1 star = even the niche audience may not enjoy.]]

Other: The translator has dropped this as of v3c17. There is a v4 but he wrote that it was very short and nothing important happened. The initial setting of this series is somewhat similar to "My Death Flags Show No Sign of Ending, " except more fighting/planning and less romance. "Death Flags" is also much better written." So if you were looking for a story in this genre/scenario, maybe try "Death Flags." <<less
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captain crunch
captain crunch rated it
Overlord (LN)
April 6, 2017
Status: v11
Rating: 4-4.5 stars, Translation: 5/5

(My reviews may sound negative, but I'm just listing reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers will enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience will enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience will enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some difficulty to... more>> read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]]

MC is a lonely salaryman whose only friends are guild members in landmark but aging VR dive game. He logs into the game on the day the servers close. He is alone in the final countdown hours, as everyone else has stopped playing. However, the game does not end, and MC cannot log out. MC, his guild hall, and the guild's numerous support NPCs appear to have been transported to another world. MC goes on an adventure to explore this world, look for other gamers, and protect his guild hall from potential dangers. The series is a transported to another world genre, has a magic fantasy world, demi-humans, politics/factions/nations, lots and lots of subordinates, some kingdom building in the later volumes, an OP MC, small and large scale battles, but no romance.

I may be biased, because Overlord is the first LN that I've read, and it got me into other JP and CN LN/WN. I started with the anime, and ended up wanting to know more, since the anime probably would not get any more seasons. The MC was different for me, because it was the first morally ambiguous and immediately OP MC I've seen. MC isn't particularly evil, but does or condones questionable actions to protect or enhance his guild. He retains all his skills, items, wealth, and guild hall/NPCs, which are OP in this new world. The subordinates are quite varied, and have interesting personalities. His attempts as a salaryman to lead OP NPCs-turned-into-real-beings/monsters is the source of most of the humor. I liked the journey of following MC along as he tried to understand this new world and crushing any obstacle he meets. My main issue is that the subject matter in some of the volumes were not as interesting as others. For example, v4 is about lizardmen. Quite a large portion is from their POV, and the author tried to show their lifestyle, but I couldn't relate to them and wanted to the story to move on. Another one is about focus. There are a lot of loose threads that are occasionally touched upon, such as the search for other players, or events in another country. The story might comment on some of them, but then ignore them for a very long time. Some readers might feel like the comedy starts to get old, as it is consistently about the same joke of the MC unable to return the advances of his female subordinates, or how he is a somewhat bumbling leader but usually accidentally succeeds, either by chance or because his subordinates are competent. Other readers might not like a villain character, or an automatically OP MC.

So, I am probably biased, but I think a large majority or more may enjoy this series, especially if they were a fan of the anime. There are some less interesting volumes, but I think most reader would still trudge through them.

Other thoughts: There are currently 11 LN volumes. #12 is rumored to be out in late summer/early fall of 2017. I didn't read the WN, but I heard that it is significantly different. The LN is now licensed, so it may be difficult to find all of the fan translations. <<less
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captain crunch
Update from v5 to v9: lowering the rating from 3.5 to 3

Rating: 3, Translation: 5

[Rating/Translation scale: 5 = almost all readers may enjoy / infrequent minor errors. 4 = large majority of readers may enjoy / frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3 = 50% of readers may enjoy / frequent major errors, unable to understand some sentences or a paragraph in a chapter. 2 = niche audience may enjoy / unable to understand moderate portion of a chapter. 1 = portion of niche audience... more>> may enjoy / unable to understand most of a chapter.]

A 14-y.o. Orphan farm-boy in a fantasy world goes to the dungeon city to become an adventurer. In this world, adventurers receive game-like levels, stats, and abilities through tattoos given by patron gods who have descended from another dimension. The MC starts off with no experience, being the sole member of a new goddess's guild, with the goal of becoming a hero with a harem.

Positives: Feels like a full-fledged novel series: full scenes and full storyline. Interesting mechanics on how adventuring works. MC starts off at zero, and has to overcome challenges each time he wants to advance to the next level. There seems to be a surprise in the backstory to the MC, but the author takes a very long time to reveal occasional hints.

Major Negatives: Some readers may dislike the MC. He has a cheat ability to level up dozens of times faster than anyone else. Almost every girl falls for him (usually for no reason), while he is totally oblivious and awkward around girls. He is extremely naive or impulsive. He is always stammering with exaggerated body language. His personality does not change, he does not get any less naive or oblivious even after 9 volumes.

The story's setting is bizarre and very depressing. The story seems to target teens, but the setting is more about personal violence, rather than typical adventuring/fantasy violence. The dungeon city is lawless. People murder, assault, kidnap/r*pe each other, sometimes on orders of their gods, often with no consequence. Adventurers are like slaves to their gods; they can only leave their guild with permission or run away. Many of the story arcs surround these types of violence, yet the MC never gets any more street smart. Although MC gains levels/income/harem, the world never improves and stays depressing/lawless.

There are s*x slaves and implied rape, but for some reason the author keeps calling the victims prostitutes. I don't know if this is some kind of cultural thing, like the Japan WWII "comfort women" issue.

Minor negatives: The story's scope is small. The setting is limited to the dungeon city, and the dungeon below the city. There's no romance, just scenes of MC being embarrassed, and the girls being shy or jealous of each other. Fighting scenes have annoying yelling or animal sounds in every page, or these overused sentences that are just exclamation marks. There are long explanations that I start skimming over.

Overall: Fair fantasy story about adventurers/dungeon diving. There are some major and minor issues, but they become more and more obvious when reading past volume 5 (which is where the anime stops). Personally, I eventually got tired of the MC and the story, but I think at least half of fantasy readers would disagree with me.

Other info: The anime goes through volumes 1 through 5. There are currently 11 volumes. Yen Press has translated 9 volumes, and you may need to read those as the fan translations are legally not available. <<less
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captain crunch
Warlock of the Magus World
February 5, 2017
Status: c3
I stopped reading after chapter 3, so I'm not going to give it an official rating. I've only read about a dozen JP and CN light novels so far, but this is the only one that I've dropped, and so early. I cannot give a true review, since I only read 3 chapters. I don't know how helpful this review will be to people, but I will give 4 reasons why I stopped reading.

1) The most annoying reason is that almost every dialogue line and 1/3 of non-dialogue lines ends... more>> with an exclamation mark, usually for no apparent reason. This will not be a big deal to some people, but it was super annoying to me. What if a TV show added laugh tracks after every single line, even when there was no joke? As an analogy, I'm going to use a question mark for every sentence after this.

2) The writing style/structure in the first 3 chapters didn't appeal to me? It was very superficial, as in I had trouble relating to or picturing the MC, or imagining his futuristic previous life and the current medieval world? It would jump from topic to topic without investing in much detail or imagery? It didn't make me feel interested in finding out what happens next? But I only read 3 chapters; it may have gotten better, I cannot know?

3) The evil MC tag? An evil MC doesn't have to be unappealing to a wider audience? Think of a character like Darth Vader? But I think there is a difference between an awesome evil character and just an asshole? I can't judge the MC with only 3 chapters, but the introduction didn't seem promising to me? The 13-year old boy the MC possesses supposedly is a serial rapist? That is the dead boy, not the MC? The way MC responds to this, and wanting revenge on a failed r*pe victim, gives me the impression of as*hole rather than awesome? 4) There is supposed to be a technology gap theme and the MC is a scientist, so I assume some logic or consistency should go along with the suspension of disbelief? The body the MC possesses is extremely weak for a person in this magic world, much weaker than a girl his same age? So how did he potentially r*pe up to 100 women in the past year as an infirm 12-13-year-old? Did he r*pe 5-year-old girls? The MC is a "scientist" but is amazed that a medieval culture can produce glass bottles and engrave the inner side of rings? What? The MC immediately expected the A.I. To scan and analyze physical objects with no equipment, just from MC looking at stuff? Maybe it's magic now, but was that how A.I. And physics worked in his futuristic world? The introduction only described the A.I. On his implant as being able to store and process his memories? So those were some of the reasons why I dropped this series so quickly! I thought the introduction to the MC and the setting was poorly done, and there were some things I found weird! It may be that the story would improve if I put in a little more time! But I was really annoyed by the exclamation marks so I decided to move on! <<less
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captain crunch
captain crunch rated it
Chronicles of Primordial Wars
February 7, 2017
Status: c138
Updated review. Rating of 3/5, and translation is 5/5.

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50. 2 star = a niche audience might enjoy. 1 star = even the niche audience might not enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional major grammar errors, no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common major grammar errors or some loss of meaning. 2/5 = difficulty understanding story. 1/5 = unreadable.]]

MC is a university-aged Chinese guy who, after touching a... more>> magic stone at an archeological site, transports into the body of a dying 9-year-old orphan boy in a late Stone Age society. Think pre-agriculture but post-writing. There isn't a special magic system, but some kind of mystical superstrength and herbalism. No magical creatures or races, but the animals are ugly, large, and dangerous. There's no journeying, significant combat, wars, romance, or technology gap/cultivation. Which leads to my main criticism about the content, and my main one about the style.

There is very little going on, especially in the first 40 or so chapters. It's slice of life about MC looking for stones, crafting stones, and finding sources of food. There is little progression of the MC until he gets his super powers, which aren't out of the ordinary until he begins to unlock more abilities. Afterwards, things actually start to happen, mostly hunting and related activities. The content becomes somewhat more exciting, and the MC begins to interact with more characters.

However, even though the content progressively becomes more interesting, the writing style does not. It's very redundant and full of self-explanatory or irrelevant details. It feels like how kids will repeat the same thing over and over in different ways, or add unnecessary information, in order to make their essays longer. Additionally, the style is also very matter-of-fact, not much personality (personality of characters, relationships, tension, suspense, mystery, etc.).

Before chapters 40-50, I initially gave this series 2 stars because it was extremely boring. Then the content became much better, so I gave it 3-3.5 stars. But because the writing style hasn't improved, I think it is solidly a 3. I think half of readers who pick this up would lose interest at some point, especially the early chapters. But the story has enough content to maybe keep the other half hanging on. I think if you have lots of free time, wait until after c40's before deciding whether or not to drop. But if you don't have free time and have other series on your to-read list, maybe read those first.

Also, I'm not sure why the title has "Wars" in it, so far all the combat is just hunting ugly animals. <<less
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captain crunch
captain crunch rated it
The New Gate
December 29, 2016
Status: v3c4
Synopsis: MC is a solo player who defeats the final boss in a fantasy RPG death game to release the players trapped inside with him (think Sword Art Online), but before he can log out he gets sent into the future of the game as if it were the real world and the other players had left. He attempts to investigate what happened and how to get out, while trying to search for any friendly NPCs or other players.

Genre/Features: MC is OP, was the top player of the game, and... more>> now the strongest individual in the new world. He just wants to investigate how to get back, so he keeps a low profile and avoids showing off his power. He starts off with no companions, and does not nation build. There is magic and skill combat involved, plenty of fighting scenes. The slow parts are a bit slice of life. Typical fantasy RPG world with different races. There is some romance, and hints of some harem so far. Issues: The writing has problems with redundancy, relevance, and pacing. An example is the MC will say he is tired in quotation marks, after doing some hard work. The next paragraph will repeat the same exact thing with different variations. Then it will spend a page explaining why he is tired. We know he's tired because he just did a lot of work, why do we need an explanation??? This is like how students fill up space when they can't think of things to write about in essays. The chapters/volumes could probably be reduced in length by 50%. The description of the boss fight at the very beginning is an example of how the combat sometimes feels like reading the instruction manual to a game. There are a lot of slow parts, and the progression is interrupted by miscellaneous events. I don't think the character has found out ANY information of why he's stuck in this world as of V3c4. Some of the dialogue that intend to be emotional or funny feel flat. MC is maximum OP, does not improve or really have any development as a character. EVERY SINGLE TIME a female companion is standing next to him in a public scene, the author ALWAYS EVERY SINGLE TIME talks about how everyone is jealous. EVERY TIME. Please, we get the idea already.

Translation: 3 Commonly find sentences that I need to reread. Occasionally some that I can't understand. But no trouble understanding the gist of those parts.
[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional serious grammar errors, may need to reread sentences, but no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning, but no loss of overall story. 2/5 = difficult to read, difficulty understanding parts of scenes. 1/5 entire scenes unreadable.]]

Recommendation: 3 stars. Maybe 2.5
The setting has potential. There are some occasional interesting twists. The relationships between MC and companions can be sweet. However, the issues listed above are serious. Minus 2 stars for all of those issues together. Possibly minus half star for the jealousy trope, because I facepalm when I see it again. Be aware that MC does not do stuff like conquest nor gets spotlight attention.
[[5 star = most readers will enjoy, the rest will probably not think it a waste of time. 4 star = majority of readers will enjoy, but the rest will be hit or miss whether they thought it was worth their time. 3 star = hit or miss on whether a reader will enjoy, hit or miss for whether anyone thought was worth their time. 2 star = a niche audience might enjoy, the rest will probably find it not worth the time. 1 star = even the niche audience may not enjoy.]]

Other Thoughts: Some reviews will label the MC as "wimpy, " but I don't think that word means what they think it means. To me, wimpy means means backing away from necessary conflict or excessive/unreasonable fear. That does not happen to the MC. Think the word they are looking for is "non-aggressive." <<less
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My Death Flags Show No Sign of Ending
December 30, 2016
Status: v2c47
Synopsis: Guy is transmigrated into the child version of a minor boss nobility villain of a fantasy RPG that he is familiar with. He knows his character will be killed by the protagonists of the RPG. He has plenty of years of head start before the game's main story actually starts, to make plans and change the events and outcome of this world. One twist, for various reasons, is that he cannot completely change his villain impression to other people.

Genre/Features: Transmigration, fantasy RPG world, magic and skill combat, some nobility... more>> fiefdom planning/scheming. Minimal romance so far, no harem. Some misunderstandings affecting the success of MC's actions. MC is not super OP. His default strength is no more than the original villain's that he is possessing. His extra strength comes from having a head start in training as a child, and his prior knowledge of events. Not much non-human interaction.

Issues: The writing does strangely switch from 3rd person to multi-first person in the middle of V2. Very little explanation of MC's real world life, how he got there, and no investigation on how to get back. MC just assumes if he makes it to the end of the game, he'll go back to the real world. Story could be more robust with that overall picture/goal. Translation: 5/5
[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional serious grammar errors, may need to reread sentences, but no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning, but no loss of overall story. 2/5 = difficult to read, difficulty understanding parts of scenes. 1/5 entire scenes unreadable.]]

Recommendation: 4.5-5 stars
Well written, plot progresses smoothly. Not much filler. MC is resourceful and not entirely OP. Some readers may take issue with the limited amount of comedy, lightheartedness, and romance. Maybe minus half star for issues above (could have more stuff about previous life/skills and bigger picture).
[[5 star = most readers will enjoy, the rest will probably not think it a waste of time. 4 star = majority of readers will enjoy, but the rest will be hit or miss whether they thought it was worth their time. 3 star = hit or miss on whether a reader will enjoy, hit or miss for whether anyone thought was worth their time. 2 star = a niche audience might enjoy, the rest will probably find it not worth the time. 1 star = even the niche audience may not enjoy.]] <<less
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Rating: 3.5 - 4 stars, Translation: 5/5

(My reviews may sound negative, but I'm just listing reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers will enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience will enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience will enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some... more>> difficulty to read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]]

MC is a 20 (?) year old high school dropout, who has been unsuccessfully looking for a job, after he and his sister's parents died. On his way to his last job interview, he was killed in an accident, and a goddess (es) transported him to an RPG-like world with multiple cheat abilities. This series is basically a transported to a fantasy RPG world with cheat abilities. MC has quick leveling, everyone and everything uses a game-like system (even regular jobs and everyday life), and there's magic, combat, dungeons, demons, beasts, demi-humans, harem, slaves, and other Japanese transports. The story is pretty standard to its genre. You won't find many new ideas. However, it doesn't waste time with too much slice of life or redundant information, that lots of other JP WN/LN suffer from. On the other hand, chapters are extremely short. The storytelling is light and smooth, and the translation is one of the best I've read so far. Characters seem typical, not much development, but they have their roles. MC doesn't have much strong motivations or goals. He's just mostly leveling up while being "jobless, " and picking up slave girls. At least he doesn't run away from confrontations, which is a problem in some series in this genre. There are some side characters and side stories, and a background story to mix things up and seems to be directing the overall series along a bigger arc.

I think a medium to large majority of readers (3.5-4 stars) would find this series entertaining, even if it's not original. Some readers may lose interest if they read too many of the same type of story and was expecting something different, especially when the MC doesn't have strong challenges or goals. Some may not like harem or the cliche "good" slavery. As of c109, a turning point is nearing where the background history and a side story will meet with the MC. I don't think the rating will rise above 4, but there is potential for it to go below 3.5 if this turning point leads to a strange route or doesn't give the MC more direction. I'm enjoying it so far; we'll see how it goes. <<less
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captain crunch
Tsuki ga Michibiku Isekai Douchuu
September 4, 2017
Status: c280
Update: I've now caught up at C280. The translation has gradually improved to a 3, maybe 3.5. The story is slightly better; positives are somewhat weighed down by negatives. The author fleshes out the characters and the setting, but the rambling monologues are still a problem. The author also tries out many interesting and different ideas, but he could've spent more time developing each one before suddenly jumping to the next one. For example: there is no specific training in between serious fights, and MC will start using new abilities... more>> with little explanation. There isn't much of an overall direction; the MC's 2 initial goals (revenge on the Goddess and learning about his parents' history) barely progress.

********************************

Rating: 2.5 stars, Translation: 2/5

(My reviews may sound negative, but my format is short on positive comments (avoiding spoilers), and often lists reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[5 star = almost all readers may enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers may enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers may enjoy. 2 star = niche audience may enjoy. 1 star = portion of niche audience may enjoy.] [5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some difficulty to read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]

My intro (minor spoilers from prologue) : MC is a 17-year-old high school student, whose parents are from another RPG/fantasy world. Because of a contract his parents had with the goddess of the other world, MC is transferred to the other world with the help of one of Earth's gods. However, the goddess of the other world doesn't like MC, and she wants nothing to do with MC. The goddess sends MC away to "monster" territory with a "curse." The Earth god tries to make up for it by giving MC a unique ability.

The MC starts out alone and disoriented. He has some OP physical ability and magic power, but doesn't know how to use them. He slowly learns, while he gathers followers and wanders towards human territory. His goals are a bit vague, MC does mention wanting to search for his parents' history or relatives. Fans of the summoning/reincarnation genre will find the format to be familiar. The story seems to be a variation where the summoner is an antagonist, and the MC is the misunderstood underdog. However, the execution, and the translation, is not so good. The story is in 1st person POV, and the narrator usually rambles on for most of the chapter. The train of thought can get so off-topic, and continue for so long, that I forget what the chapter was originally about.

The story can be too vague. 3 examples: 1) The MC says his 2 main followers feel like sisters to him, but there are no scenes or dialogues that make it seem like his followers have that kind of relationship with MC. 2) Descriptions of locations and people are lacking, so I have trouble imagining this new world. People are faceless names, maybe with a certain hair color. Locations are just a "town" or "village." 3) The magic/fighting/leveling system is not fleshed out. MC seems to only use 1 spell and 1 ability, but somehow does dozens of things with them.

Because of the issues with writing style, I think most readers who aren't hardcore fans of the genre may quickly lose interest. Thus, the 2.5 star rating on my scale. I'm sure the translator worked very hard, but I am having a lot of difficulties. There are chapters where I have to guess what's going on, so I rate the translation a 2/5 on my scale.

Many sentences are bizarre, and seem like minimally edited machine translation. Here's an example: "I want to say that the inside is but from the taste of people it would be faster to count them backwards." Even if I understand a sentence, their context might not make sense.

I also discovered that I'm bothered by sentences that inexplicably end with the words "but" or "so."

I think some fans of the genre, despite the flaws, may still want to read this series, but be discouraged by the translation. <<less
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captain crunch
captain crunch rated it
Knights & Magic
March 5, 2017
Status: v4c37
Rating: 3.5 stars (maybe 3), Translation: 4/5

(My reviews may sound negative, but I'm just listing reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers will enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience will enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience will enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some... more>> difficulty to read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]]

A programmer and mecha otaku dies and is born again into a fantasy world. His memories of his old life return when he becomes age 3. The country he lives in borders a demon zone, and defends itself with magic-powered mechas. From the moment he becomes self-aware of his old life, MC's goal is to become a mecha pilot. Has a medieval fantasy setting, demon beasts (but not really at forefront, just isolated incidents), magic system (more like part of natural world rather than RPG system), mecha and other magic technology, reincarnation from birth to teenage years, school life arc when MC trains to be a mecha pilot, moderate amount of combat (with demon beasts and other mecha), some politics/factions. There is a harem and romance tag, but I haven't seen any of that, as of chapter 37 (girls dote over MC because he looks and sounds like a girl, not because of romantic feelings). MC is not OP, but other people are relatively unskilled.

This is an interesting setting, the translation is good, and the imagery isn't bad. But there are a couple problems that I have, but other people may not: how programming relates to magic, and the believability of the MC's accomplishments. I'm not sure if the author is a programmer, or if it's the translation, but "scripts" controls magic in this new world. The author sometimes says they're "compiled, " but scripts usually do not need compilation, and are different from programs. It's also strange why everyone has to continually write scripts when it sounds like software is already installed on their magic devices. The author's description of how magic works in this world is a bit vague on what "scripting" looks like and how magicians interact with the system. The mechanism he describes also seems to be violated by the MC and companions, even though they don't have any special abilities. This issue may not be a big deal to most people, but to me, there should be a higher standard of consistency needed to suspend belief when trying to use a real-world activity or knowledge in a fantasy setting. The MC's accomplishments are related to his creativity with magic techniques and mecha engineering innovations. The problem is that many of MC's improvements are fairly ordinary changes, and the reactions of other people to them are so exaggerated (almost falling down, heavy breathing, loud exclamations). Mecha technology has existed in this world for many centuries, and it sounds like it takes 100-200 years to come up with a new mass produced mecha. The author explains all this by saying there's just a difference in "common sense" in this world. But, to me, it sounds like the people in this world are unimaginative or terrible soldiers and engineers. It makes me feel like MC's accomplishments aren't all that impressive, and people's reactions feel a bit annoying. Other general issues are common ones that I see in many LN/WN: frequent time skips (backwards and forwards, sometimes multiple per chapters), frequent change in setting/location with no warning, not much character personality or development, redundant or obvious information, not a lot of suspense or intrigue. Sometimes I just speed read over uninteresting sections.

This is an interesting combination of magic and mecha in the reincarnation/fantasy genre. I really want to like it. I think the combined issues mentioned above would make a rating of 3.5 out of 5 on my scale. Somewhat more than 50/50 of readers may find something to like about this series. Others may lose interest during the slow chapters or from the storytelling style, especially if they're not into this fusion of genres. Some may be disappointed that there is no romance or harem, despite being tagged. My 2 personal complaints, I think many people wouldn't be bothered by them to the degree that I was. But if many people were, it might lower the rating to 3.

Other: I believe this is the WN version. As of March 2017, the translation team is on hiatus after completing Volume 4, or Chapter 37, because they are using the Chinese translation to translate into English. Volume 5 hasn't yet been translated into Chinese. <<less
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captain crunch
Re:Zero Kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu (WN)
January 8, 2017
Status: v4c17 part3
Rating: 2.5-3 stars
Translation: 5/5

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers will enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience will enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience will enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = bigger grammar errors, no loss of meaning. 3/5 = bigger grammar errors, some loss of meaning. 2/5 = difficult to read and understand. 1/5 = unreadable.]]

I have dropped this, so I will not vote an... more>> official rating. I am a fan of the currently only anime season produced so far, and I wanted to read ahead. I started reading from the epilogue of V3 of this WN, where the anime leaves off. The story is about a high school MC who gets transported to a fantasy world while on a trip to the convenience store. He encounters a half-elf girl, befriends her, and tags along with her. He runs into fatal situations, and discovers that he reappears as himself several days before dying, and retains his memories. However, he is unable to tell anyone about this ability. MC is on a journey mostly to stay by his new "love interest's" side and protect her from these dangerous events, while trying to figure out why he's there and what his ability is for. There is romance, not-quite-harem, magical fantasy world, demi-humans, fantasy monsters, magic cults, martial skills and/or magic combat, and hints of political factions. No nation-building or cultivation. MC doesn't have any powers or ability progression, except the 1 mentioned.

I liked the anime, but not the novel. I can't speak about the first 3 volumes, but V4 so far is incredibly boring to me. The majority of the text consists of uninteresting or redundant dialogue. An entire chapter can be 1 conversation that goes around in circles or repeats the same details over and over, without providing any new information or adding to the story. This also affects the already slow pace.

As an example, the characters have already decided to go somewhere, but then they sit down and spend the entire chapter talking about going to that place. Then the next chapter is almost the same exact dialogue all over again while they sit in a carriage. The chapter after that, they arrive at their destination, hoping to find answers to some questions. But then it's another chapter of dialogue where they talk in an extremely roundabout way to reveal almost no new information. It makes me want to put the WN away and do something else.

The next issue is the content of the dialogue. Most of it is the MC one-sidedly flirting with the girl, and teasing a side character, with little reciprocation. I guess it's supposed to be cute and funny, respectively, but to me it doesn't convey well and just feels creepy and douchey. Last main issue is that the MC sometimes sounds possessive and jealous. The anime also showed he is at times arrogant, angry, and immature. This seems like the start of an abusive relationship to me, which taints the romance. But, he is a teenager, and the guy dies over and over again and sometimes loses his mind while he is tortured, so maybe it's understandable? I really want to like the WN, because I enjoyed the anime. But the 1st 2 issues are huge. I don't know why this is so different from the anime's style. It could be that V4 is just a slow volume; there are no battles and MC doesn't have to use his ability, compared to the anime where MC dies all the time and has to figure out how to overcome each challenge. I'd give it 2 stars for uninteresting, long dialogue, and add half a star because there are interesting chapters in between the boring ones. Fans of the anime, like me, still want to know what happens next, so that anticipation might bump up the rating to 3 stars for some readers. However, I am dropping this because I want to spend my time reading other things. I suspect Volume 4 is just slow, so maybe if you stick around longer, it might get better.

Other thoughts: This WN version is ahead of the LN. The English LN has also been licensed, so you may have some trouble finding translations. WN should still be free. I'm not sure about differences between the 2 version, but I think the TN wrote that the differences are minor. <<less
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Release that Witch
January 6, 2017
Status: c198
Synopsis: MC is a modern day mechanical engineer who is reincarnated/transmigrated (?) into the body of a prince in an alternate fantasy world. He starts off with a great disadvantage while having to survive against his siblings, who are in a battle to win the right to inherit the throne, a religious organization with mysterious motives, and other threats. He discovers that magic is real, performed by witches hunted by the Church. MC uses his memory of modern science and technology, in addition to the abilities of witches, to revolutionize... more>> his territory and face the coming battles. Genre/Features: Reincarnation, medieval fantasy world (no demi-humans, or magical creatures so far). Magic restricted to handful of females called witches. Nation building, delving in chemistry and engineering. Factional confrontations (royal siblings, church with ulterior motives). Some romance, slow progression with some larger steps later on, as of c198. Potential harem, but no definitive progress, yet. MC is not OP, does not have superhuman fighting abilities. Issues: There are a few chapters where very minor characters might slightly flesh out parts of the universe, but they wouldn't matter very much if those chapters went missing. I didn't get much of a feel for his personality in his previous life, and whether it affected his new life. It's mostly his knowledge that plays a role in the new life. I thought the science and engineering was a nice touch for the nation building aspect, but maybe it can be too much for a few readers. MC discovers magic is real in this fantasy world, and can't reconcile it with the laws of physics, but repeatedly emphasizes that the religions are BS. He's right to be skeptical, but it makes him seem hypocritical when he overdoes it. Translation: 4/5
[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional serious grammar errors, may need to reread sentences, but no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning, but no loss of overall story. 2/5 = difficult to read, difficulty understanding parts of scenes. 1/5 entire scenes unreadable.]]

Recommendation: 4.5 to 5 stars
A soft minus half star for issues listed above. I am enjoying this series. It feels like a full-fledged novel with it's writing style, narration and dialogue, and step-wise progression. I found the MC's use of his science knowledge very interesting, although some readers may not. It's nice to see an MC work through his challenges with no superpowers. Keep in mind that the majority of the chapters are about nation building. Combat scenes are few in between, but they utilize his innovations and show the difference made by technology. [[5 star means most readers will enjoy, the rest will probably not think it a waste of time. 4 star means majority of readers will enjoy, but the rest will be hit or miss whether they thought it was worth their time. 3 star means hit or miss on whether a reader will enjoy, hit or miss for whether anyone thought was worth their time. 2 star means a niche audience might enjoy, the rest will probably find it not worth the time. 1 star means even the niche audience may not enjoy.]]

Other: Genjitsushugisha no Oukokukaizouki (A Realist's Kingdom Reform Chronicles) Is a similar story, but it feels simpler and doesn't use as much detail with science and engineering. It's also a bit more preachy about politics, and a lot more cheesy. I gave it a slightly lower rating than this series, 4 stars. <<less
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Genjitsushugi Yuusha no Oukoku Saikenki
January 1, 2017
Status: v3c5 part5
Synopsis: Lazy (?), unambitious university student is summoned to a fantasy world to be a hero for a country with various internal and external troubles. MC is made into the king, and uses some very unorthodox fantasy skills and his modern knowledge to try and solves these problems.

Genre/Features: Heavy on nation management/building. Uses some historical examples and quotes. A lot of dialogue, beginnings of a harem and small amount of romance so far. Has demi-humans, small amount of magic technology and combat. Large group, army movements and strategy. Has very... more>> little personal combat. Magic use outside of these combat scenes is minimal, mostly limited to tools and daily life. MC is not OP, although has a few unique skills upon arrival to new world. Typical RPG/fantasy world, but doesn't seem to be heavy on RPG system or events, other than the names of skills and magic. More like modern knowledge meets fantasy world. Or like MC begins an early Renaissance for this world. Translation: 5/5. Translator also includes many footnotes for those interested in Japanese words or historical info.

[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = occasional serious grammar errors, may need to reread sentences, but no loss of meaning. 3/5 = common serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning, but no loss of overall story. 2/5 = difficult to read, difficulty understanding parts of scenes. 1/5 entire scenes unreadable.]]

Issues: Once in a while, it can get preachy about politics and philosophy. Historical quotes comes mostly from Machiavelli, Sun Tsu, and Romance of the 3 Kingdoms. These are common, but usually only up to a few sentences. Can skim over the longer ones without missing out on the meaning or action of the chapter. Some chapters can be cheesy or uninteresting to some readers, like a cooking or American Idol chapter. The "real world" problems that MC tries to solve and his solutions are a bit simplified. Hard to believe a university student would know so much about urban planning, politics, history, etc, and apply them in real situations right away; but this is a fantasy story.

Recommendation: 4 stars. Written well, interesting characters although some aren't well developed. Interesting scenarios and problems/solutions. Fans of nation building will probably enjoy this. However, some people who are not fans may find the rest (harem, romance, large scale battle, limited personal fighting) not enough to keep reading. Even if it's not the most interesting read, the author's writing and the translation are very smooth. Minus half star for occasional preachiness and cheesiness. Minus half star because may appeal to just a limited audience. IMPORTANT: NEED TO BE OK WITH HEAVY EMPHASIS ON NATION BUILDING AND LIMITED ON TYPICAL FANTASY STUFF.

[[5 star means most readers will enjoy, the rest will probably not think it a waste of time. 4 star means majority of readers will enjoy, but the rest will be hit or miss whether they thought it was worth their time. 3 star means hit or miss on whether a reader will enjoy, hit or miss for whether anyone thought was worth their time. 2 star means a niche audience might enjoy, the rest will probably find it not worth the time. 1 star means even the niche audience may not enjoy.]]

Other: The English license of the LN has been picked up by an online publisher. They are now starting on LN v1. The primary independent translator paused for a few weeks during December 2016, but has posted that he has contacted the publisher and he will likely continue translating this WN at least through v4. <<less
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captain crunch
Recommendation Rating: 3.5 Stars
Translation Rating: Various groups, 4 to 2.5 out of 5

[[5 star = almost all readers will enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers will enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers will enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience will enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience will enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Minor spelling and grammar errors. 4/5 = serious grammar errors, no loss of meaning. 3/5 = serious grammar errors, some loss of meaning. 2/5 = difficult to read and understand. 1/5 = unreadable.]]

MC... more>> is a 23-year-old NEET seeking employment. He finds a job offer to test an RPG game, but it turns out that some alternate dimension's god wants him to test out RPG-like progression of skills in an alternate world, optionally also to save that world from some kind of unmentioned destruction. The RPG progression (leveling up with combat) is kind of a cheat, since the people of that world don't have access to it. The setting is typical medieval fantasy world, simple magic system, fantasy creatures, demi-humans, etc. There is a harem, MC has OP progression but starts out at level 1, and there is quite a bit of slice-of-life. There is NO technology gap, world building, political factions, or much drama.

The story is fairly straightforward and linear. It's not bad, but not new to me. The harem portion does contain some adult details, but is still PG-13. I don't think the slice-of-life is too slow, if that is a concern to some readers. MC keeps a low profile, but uses his powers whenever he needs to. He was a NEET, and doesn't want unnecessary danger, as he is not OP and doesn't want to die. What is OP is that he can level up and acquires new abilities/spells in days or weeks, like a game, when other people cannot. The writing moves along, and doesn't have too many slow or redundant/irrelevant parts that some slice-of-life stories suffer from.

I think at least a 3-star rating is the minimum, but I like it well enough to bump it to 3.5 or 4. But I would keep it at 3.5, because of translation issues. The translation is currently on the 4th volume. The first 3 volumes were done by 3 different groups, and the 4th volume is being done by the 3rd group as well. The 1st group, I'd give them a rating of 4. The current translator is not a native English speaker, and most of the 3rd volume was unedited. There were frequent sentences that didn't make sense, or required rereading. I would give a translation rating of 2.5 for some chapters, 3 for others. He now has an editor for volume 4, and I think the rating has improved to 3 or 3.5, for now. Overall, this is a typical story with nothing really original. It is simple and straightforward. But the pacing, progression, and characters are done well enough. I think at least a small to medium majority of readers may enjoy this series. Other readers may find the balance of slice-of-life, the MC's steady but slow progression, or his low-profile personality, to be unexciting. <<less
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captain crunch
Rating: 2-2.5, Translation: 3.5

[Rating/Translation scale: 5 = almost all readers may enjoy / infrequent minor errors. 4 = large majority of readers may enjoy / frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3 = 50% of readers may enjoy / frequent major errors, unable to understand some sentences or a paragraph in a chapter. 2 = niche audience may enjoy / unable to understand moderate portion of a chapter. 1 = portion of niche audience may enjoy / unable to understand most of a chapter.]

Description: A... more>> solo player in a VR-MMORPG created a guild with only himself and 200+ customized NPCs. He "fell asleep" in-game and woke up with his guild and castle in a medieval fantasy world. The translation is still at a very early chapter #40. So far, the MC has directed his guild to make contact with a couple of surrounding countries, has some early confrontations with them, and has made his initial declaration of "founding his own country."

Criticisms: The writing feels like a rough first-draft of a web novel. The author even writes lot of notes apologizing for his writing. The main issue is lack of development of plot and characters. For example, the author will drop a the names of a dozen NPC guild characters, and then I will forget who they are in the next chapter. The early plot feels like an outline version of some of Overlord's volumes. Outline as in there is minimal build-up or step-wise progression, as if condensing each volume into several chapters. Like Overlord, the MC and his NPCs are already maxed out OP, so without a fleshed out plot, it just becomes a list of events where the OP MC crushes the another-worlders. On the other hand, those who found Overlord to be too slow, they might prefer this faster pace. The MC seems like a normal guy, so then his reason for forming a country ends up being strange: not wanting nobles to talk to him as if he's a commoner? And it's strange that there's no transition from being a normal salaryman to laughing about killing thousands of enemies.

Translation: It's machine translated, so there are awkwardly phrased sentences. Just a few of them can be harder to understand. I rate between a 3 and 4 on my scale. The current translation rate is very fast, about 1 chapter a day.

Overall: The general story seems like it could be good, similar to early plot of Overlord. But the storytelling feels like a web novel's rough draft. I think a number of "another world" fans may not be satisfied with the quality, but a little more than just a dedicated following may continue reading, so I give it a 2-2.5 on my scale. In the future, if the author comes out with an improved LN version, maybe readers who left might be interested in taking a look at it. <<less
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captain crunch
Rating: 3.5-4, Translation: no problems
[Rating: 5 = almost all readers may enjoy. 4 = large majority of readers may enjoy. 3 = 50% of readers may enjoy. 2 = niche audience may enjoy. 1 = portion of niche audience may enjoy.]

Summary: Demon kings build dungeons and create monsters that challenge adventurers and feed off their emotions. One newly born demon king decides to do things differently and build a city and feed off emotions of residents and visitors. He also has some interesting abilities and seems to have knowledge... more>> about modern firearms.

This is one of those stories where the MC decides to do things differently from the norm. Even though MC has some advantages over other adversaries, he has to progress and faces some challenge. He learns and develops his own style. Uses strategy and tactics to best use his abilities.

Some problems: the harem isn't really a harem, mostly followers that are treated like family. There are plenty of tropes. The author often repeats paragraphs of explanations, even within the same volume. The author makes the MC's origin unclear, making it uncertain if this is actually isekai vs fantasy. There are some cheesy dialogue, like any LN/WN.

This series has a variety of minor issues, but for the most part is a good read. Has lots of tropes, but at least the MC does some interesting things with his abilities. Translation is excellent. I think isekai readers and many of non-isekai readers will enjoy. <<less
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captain crunch
Maoyuu Maou Yuusha
June 28, 2017
Status: v1c1.5
I only read 1 and a half chapters, so I cannot give it a rating or complete review. However, the translation seems pretty good.

I stopped reading because it was really uninteresting to me. The whole 1st chapter is the Hero and the Demon Queen talking to each other about various topics, interspersed with dictionary definitions of various terms. Nothing. Happens (well the 2 characters did make a deal but that's all). These 2 characters are anonymous, they don't even have names. The conversation tells me nothing about the characters, the... more>> world or other details about the setting. It's just a list of economic/social/political issues and their definitions. It was extremely boring for me, like listening to 2 people having a conversation centered around reading a dictionary. I thought maybe this is just the intro chapter to show that it's going to be different from the cliche, but the next chapter was similar, so I stopped reading.

The average rating seems awfully high, and the other 2 reviews are glowing. Maybe I have to read more chapters to get to better stuff. For now, I'm going to read other things, maybe I'll come back to this some other time. <<less
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The Silly Alchemist
May 24, 2017
Status: c72
Rating: 3 stars, Translation: 4/5

(My reviews may sound negative, but my format is to list reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[[5 star = almost all readers may enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers may enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers may enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience may enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience may enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some difficulty... more>> to read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]]

(My synopsis has more info than above, but not really spoilers since most info is from very first chapter.) MC is like an anonymous blank character from the real world who got his hands on some "cultivation" and martial arts secret textbooks just before he dies and reincarnates into another world. His wish is granted to become the son of a rich family and spend a lot of money. OK, that's about it. Not sure how to summarize everything else other than the story is like a series of episodic short stories, time skips, of the MC growing up and his shenanigans with spending money. There are 700+ chapters, and the translation is at 72 right now, so there may be more to the story than this.

As of chapter 72, features: Reincarnation, Chinese style fantasy world with magic/martial arts/demihumans (but very little utilization of any fantasy stuff), rich MC spending money, happy-go-lucky MC, not really a harem (don't know why the tag is there) and no romance (just surrounded by female characters), not many challenges or tension, no combat, not much training or power progression, no wars or political conflicts, no adventuring or journeying, no technology gap or nation building. The title says "alchemy, " but there hasn't been much of it, more like it's mentioned as a vehicle to set up his shenanigans.

So from the list of features, you can tell that the story isn't typical. It doesn't seem serious at all. It's just one random episode of an unserious incident after another, often with a brief time skip in between each episode. MC's actions so far aren't consequential to the world, and he doesn't really have a long term goal other than spending money. There's no leveling up or exploring or fighting. I think this may turn off a portion of fantasy world reincarnation readers. But some readers may be OK with reading something different.

The MC himself also feels a bit anonymous to me. Very little is said about his previous life other than he was "ordinary." He doesn't really grow or have special goals. He doesn't use anything from his previous life in this new life, other than that secret "cultivation" stash of textbooks, which is more like a plot device than a part of the story or his development.

One pet peeve I have is when a story often feels like filler, or is too redundant. It can take a long time to get to the point. An example is in the very first chapter, the author spends several paragraphs to vaguely state that the house MC is reincarnated into is big and expensive. I think some readers like this style, and I have seen it in many series, but I call it "Slice of Too Much Information." Another example, without giving spoilers, is that the first 25-30 chapters is kind of like one long prologue. Something happens to the MC, and some readers may feel like it was a bait-and-switch.

There are some other very minor issues that I don't think are a big deal. An example is another of my pet peeves: the use of exclamation marks. This author does liberally use them, but it's not as bad as other series. It's more like once every couple paragraphs, vs every other sentence in Warlock of the Magus World.

Overall, this story is a reincarnation to a Chinese historical fantasy world, but it doesn't follow the adventuring or nation building themes. It's not serious, and doesn't focus on any challenging or dramatic events. The story is in the form of episodes, rather than arcs. My opinion is half of the reincarnation audience would prefer something different, but some of that half may end up liking this. However, since the pace is very slow and the first 30 chapters felt like a lone introduction, some readers may have dropped this before finding out they liked it. As of chapter 72, I might have given 3.5 stars on my scale, but I think the sum of the issues brought it down to around 3 stars.

There are a whopping 700+ chapters in this series. Maybe the author gets more serious, or maybe this theme may just continue on. I assume alchemy will eventually play a more obvious role, since it's in the title. Plenty of room for the rating to change. <<less
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captain crunch rated it
Konjiki no Moji Tsukai (WN)
May 5, 2017
Status: c264
Updates Rating: 3 stars, Translation: 3.5/5 (multiple translation teams, most chapters range from 4/5 to 3/5)

(My reviews may sound negative, but I often list reasons why I didn't give 5 stars.)

[[5 star = almost all readers may enjoy. 4 star = large majority of readers may enjoy. 3 star = 50/50 of readers may enjoy. 2 star = a niche audience may enjoy. 1 star = maybe portion of niche audience may enjoy.]]

[[5/5 = Infrequent minor errors. 4/5 = Frequent minor errors or infrequent major errors, no... more>> difficulty to read. 3/5 = Frequent major errors, some difficulty to read. 2/5 = Difficult to read. 1/5 = Unreadable.]]

MC is one of five high school students (17-18 year olds) who get summoned to another world to defend the human kingdom from the demon kingdom. However, MC was caught up in the summoning by accident. Instead of receiving the hero traits, he gets an unusual magic ability. He is also skeptical about the geopolitical issues, and immediately decides to leave and go exploring on his own.

Features: summoning to another world, RPG-like leveling and magic system, rude MC with OP ability and fast leveling but starts from level 1, demihumans, monsters/beasts, small group combat, traveling/exploring, temporary companions, probably large scale combat later on, national conflicts, loli and loli-shaped characters. So far does not include nation building or harem/romance.

The concept is interesting because MC does not want to be involved in some strangers' wars, and his cheat ability is somewhat different. The story does include the usual reincarnation/fantasy themes such as adventuring and magic combat. So I think most readers in the genre will feel familiar with the format, although with some added twists. But I do have a few major criticisms.

The MC's attitude can quickly get irritating. He is all about fair trade and not doing things for free, but on the rare occasion that he needs something from another character, he gets a little pissed that other people want something in return. He is also about being direct, getting to the point, and disposing of formalities. But his dialogue often is nothing like that. It's almost always insults and being rude. I think it's supposed to be funny, but after 200+ chapters, it's getting tiring.

The dialogue and some characters are very exaggerated, like 1970's children's cartoons. For example, MC will constantly use the same insult on a companion, and the companion will react with the same highly exaggerated outraged response. Many characters also speak with sound effects and catch phrases. I think this is also supposed to be funny, but it's a bit much.

Almost every female character is a preteen girl or a loli-shaped woman. Why is this necessary? Most of them fall for the MC and that stereotypical schoolgirl dialogue and reaction with MC. But there is no romance, because MC has his independent attitude theme going on. Again, this continues on all the time. It doesn't stop. It also doesn't make sense why everyone, even males, like the MC. He doesn't do anything likable. I would understand if people admire his OPness, but not him as a person.

One thing that I think readers will be split on is that the MC changes roles after the 1st 100 chapters. The MC starts out just wandering around, leveling up, and forming connections. After chapter 100, the MC has decided to ally with a long-term goal or a faction. Some readers may be OK with both of these, but some may only prefer one instead of the other. My opinion was that I was concerned the story wasn't going anywhere in the first 100 chapters.

I gave this 3 stars. It's a different variation to the reincarnation/fantasy genre. Fans of the genre will probably be comfortable with it. My rating may be biased; I'm starting to get tired of the MC's attitude

and the dialogue.

Other: This is the WN. There is a LN, but the translation appears to be much further behind than the WN. I don't know what the differences between the 2 are. <<less
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