Against the Gods
December 26, 2018
This story has everything in it for me. There are aspects of the story that I would find five-star quality, then there are aspects of this story that are one-star quality. Of course, this is relative to ones' own tastes.
Five Star Aspects: My most favorite thing about this story is the dialogue. You can tell the author has fully thought through a characters thought-process when writing their dialogue. Granted, this is not 100% perfect as the author is a human being. There are some mistakes, but I have been most
impressed with the dialogue. Consequently, the dialogue adds richness to the plot and characterization. Each character feels pretty distinct and unique for the most part. While there are some overlapping character-types, they have unique aspects to them that differentiate them.
Regarding the plot, I can only say the author takes his time building the plot up. Each event that takes place in the story does feel as if they are separate, instead, they are connected together as if strung together. You will see threads of a plot start several hundred chapters earlier and not conclude or even continue until much later in the story. I find this pretty refreshing.
The women are also not just jade doll playthings for the MC as a reward. As a fact, the women are consistently stronger than the MC when they are introduced and are his strongest allies in whichever arc or event the MC is involved in. They do not really lose their purpose either and are brought back time and again. I find that very interesting and refreshing. You do not really find that even in Western media.
Four Star Aspects: The world is huge and it is built up pretty well. Nothing much to say about that but the scale of the world does reflect the size of the story. I also enjoy the fights. The techniques named and used are some of my most favorite to read. Even though the MC is protected by the plot and consistently comes out on top, the execution is satisfying to read. You will read the MC curb-stomp some characters, and then finally meet a match at the end or near the end and watch the MC come up with interesting tactics and methods to defeat the opponent. The fights are well executed and you get both worlds.
Three Star Aspects: The harem relationships--The author is pretty average when it comes to relationships, but there is a level of substance there. Relationships are also not a one-and-done deal as mentioned previously; however, the relationship stability is not entirely convincing. The build-up is there, but there is nothing much that shows sustainability. However, they are built on the MC doing exceptional things for them and whatnot. They also show up repeatedly and are consistently involved with the event or plot. But that doesn't mean a loving relationship can be maintained with that. But the relationship is formed after going through tough experiences, which builds tough bonds.
The MCs personality also falls in the average category. The MC's personality hardly goes through changes and transformations that he should go through based on his beliefs and or experience. The MC also hardly ever reflects on certain revelations that should obviously trigger that type of behavior. His personality also isn't really always consistent with some of his own beliefs either. He will do things to others that will infuriate him if done to him. However, when the MC is smart, he is written as smart and clever. He is definitely a gary-stu type character, but it's not exactly overbearing and it can be a fun read.
Plot devices are reused, such as arrogant young-masters, people looking down on the MC only for them to change their mind later. Granted, they are warranted since MC does stupid things and places himself in stupid situations. He is also shown as "weak" based on the cultivation system of the universe so it is natural for people to look down on him. That is why I don't consider this any lower. The arrogant young master trope isn't really that overbearing either and naturally fits into the scene. However, it can get excessive...
Two Star Aspects: Love and s*x is a joke in this novel. The concept of dual cultivation is there, and if that was it, that would be fine, but sometimes life-saving situations are saved through s*x, it is laughable. It is a shame too because women are otherwise written pretty well, but stupid plot-devices are used to have the MC engage in s*xual acts so save their lives or his own life. The saving grace is that this does not happen often at all and is rarely used, which is why it is a two-star aspect for me, but the impact of its presence is strong enough that it does impact the story.
One Star Aspects: The story is a little too wordy as points are often repeated. This may or may not be a big deal though as it is nice to be reminded of certain things as a lot can go on. I can see some people being annoyed by it though.
Overall, I gave this a four-star rating. This is an enjoyable read and will pull at all sorts of emotions. You will love and hate certain aspects of the story. It does fall into the category of a wish-fulfillment story but it's one of the best-executed.
December 26, 2018
Everything before the protagonist goes to the Japanese server is definitely a 4-5 star quality read.
Everything after the protagonist goes to the Japanese server is definitely a one- star quality read.
Having read ATG, which this author is currently famous for and had relatively decent characters, I was thoroughly disappointed with how this story turned out. The racism and s*xism practically make your head spin. I almost feel like the author was forced to write the story in that way because the MCs behavior completely changes, as if he's a wholly
different character, after returning from the Japanese server.
Everything before the Japanese server arc is a worthwhile read. Drop it after you get to that point is my advice on this matter.
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