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True Martial World
May 5, 2016
Status: c851
I honestly don't get the popularity. The story so far had been one deja vu after another–there's been four tournament style events to date, almost one after another. Is that what counts as good writing nowadays? The author goes out of his way to make villains unlikable and then sets up highly predictable reaction chapters that a lot of the readers are just gobbling it up, even though it's the same thing over and over. It seemed like the author had been going with a different direction earlier in the... more>> story, hence the slow start, but realized his writing isn't strong enough so he reverted back to the tried and true standard affair of cliches and tropes.

Cocooned Cow is basically the Michael Bay of xianxia authors; he utilizes build up/reaction chapters the same way Bay use explosion and action--gratuitous and over the top. This is how the author creates separation between the characters and this is how he will continue to write. So if you find it frustrating now, you will continue to be frustrated; don't expect the story or the writing to change. This is what happens when an author doesn't spend enough time in the beginning to set up the foundation of the story. You don't see "slow" stories like ZTJ or WoC requiring these fodder characters to remind the reader of the difference between the MC and other characters.

One huge positive is the quality of the translation and the translation speed.

Update: I've continued on from where I last left off for a two hundred chapters or so, I can finally pin-point two reasons why this story is so bad.

For one, there's no character development; there was never a reason for the reader to get invested in any character. Major characters just get written off and no one cares. Each character that appears can fit into a handful of stereotypical cookie-cutter molds--obnoxious and immature dead-men-walking annoying the MC, cold and aloof male or female senior, and nice but forgettable side cheerleader.

Second, the endlessly tedious and needlessly repetitive exposition. I don't think the author had missed any opportunities to plagiarize himself and copy passages word for word as much as he could get away with it. Sometimes he would spend an entire chapter or two to explain something that never appears in the story again. He would make the MC do some inexplicable or brain-dead action that went completely against what he had written earlier, i.e. Relics that he could previously purify and absorb using the Purple Card would just up and start poisoning him, damaged meridians that require gentle nourishment to heal will now be tempered with explosive and uncontrollable energy, fight and cripple nameless scrubs even when the author spends several paragraphs just before explaining that the MC has no reason to just because, etc.

All this combine to cripple the pacing of the story and water down any major plot development since the reader has to slog through chapters upon chapters of nothing but filler. <<less
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World of Cultivation
May 12, 2016
Status: --
This novel is an example of what an author could achieve with proper brainstorming. Every turn in the plot is justified and written with forethought; the characters felt organic and are integrated well into the story. Even for the most nondescript character, you get a sense that they have a story to tell. Antagonists aren't just power-tripping muscle heads--there's no real villain in the traditional sense of the word. The action scenes aren't repetitive or gratuitous but progressed the story forward in a meaningful way. Get your fill of mindless... more>> action elsewhere and read this novel for a genuinely good story. <<less
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Sovereign of the Three Realms
May 5, 2016
Status: --
This is not like ZTJ. Not by far. You would have to have some really terrible reading comprehension to judge this story in the same caliber as ZTJ. Every character in Ze Tian Ji is multidimensional, the plot is interwoven, the past affects the present, and there is a reason for everything. I honestly can't see how any one can compare the two stories. In Sovereign of the Three Realms, you have characters who are overly obnoxious and have no depth of character; her only purpose is to make the... more>> readers hate her. You have a bunch of young master types antagonists that appear for no good reason other than to serve as the MC's punching bag. I'm actually offended that there are readers that would actually compare this series to ZTJ.

This story starts off well enough but the transition had exhibited poor writing masqueraded as cheap reaction chapters. The difference in the quality of the first 100 chapters and the next 20 is night and day. I think it’s a great example of an author who had only brainstormed what is the first arc of the story but hadn’t really planned out how he would connect the major plot points from there onwards. What had once been carefully fleshed out characters now became one-dimensional and easy to hate, so that the author can throw in some reaction chapters that are predictable and frankly lazy writing. The enjoyment factor has definitely gone down and it’s not a must-read for me anymore. <<less
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Conquest
March 22, 2016
Status: --
This isn’t your standard affair of beat-em-up power crawl. There’s a genuinely good plot line and colorful characters that brings this story to life. This is one of the better translated work out there and deserves more popularity. The story follows the MC through many conflicts during a time of war, so you get to experience more strategic nuance to fights that you don’t see in typical wuxia novels. While the MC is strong, he’s not peerless or overpowered, so the MC have to resort to wit and guile to... more>> gain victory. This story definitely earns my recommendation. <<less
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Skyfire Avenue
March 25, 2016
Status: --
Get past the first few chapters about Lan Jue’s wine tasting and you will be treated to a very special story. Rich character profiles along with a solid storyline. Quality writing overall where fights don’t come down to who yells louder. Fights never gets old as the author have found a way to make each and every fight much more vivid and captivating then the last.

It’s a shame for those who stopped reading the series because of the slow start. Let me address some of the criticism I see. This... more>> isn’t a weak to strong MC. Think more Cowboy Bebop where the reader is thrown right in the middle of the story and we slowly find out more about the MC’s past as the story progress. This isn’t a story where the MC is pitted against increasingly more powerful adversary. I don’t see this as a flaw as the author can focus more on the story and not on traditional power crawl. Definitely recommend this story. However, I will admit that the highs are high and the lows are low. The interesting parts of the story will have you completely engrossed, but the author does digress from the main story often enough and these almost slice of life stretches could be quite dull. <<less
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Demon’s Diary
February 5, 2016
Status: --
The premise was promising but his identity as a survivor of the prison island was never brought back up in the story after the first few chapters. I'm not even talking about plot points revolving around his life on the prison island; his character, personality, thought process, etc. Doesn't show any indication of his years living in a harsh dog eat dog world. Then it just turns into your standard weak to strong, cultivating at a sect, etc. Etc. Shame the author couldn't work some originality into the story.
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Wu Dong Qian Kun
March 26, 2016
Status: --
Like others have said before me, it’s not worth your time to pick up this series. Thinking back, the writing may have been on the wall since the beginning of this novel. Having a family feud as the major plot point is too weak to sustain a power crawl type novel as the goal post just isn’t challenging for an MC that have the kind of luck and fortuitous encounters (*cough* plot armor) that Lin Dong has. The story has become about Lin Dong’s treasure collection adventure. Getting sidetracked all... more>> the time, he collects treasures that he sometimes never even put to use before he has already set his sights on a more powerful version of it. It’s devoid of meaning other than as fluff to hide a weak story development.

And the author has done a horrible job with the pacing and assigning power levels. As of chapter 277,

Spoiler

For being major powers in the Ancient Wasteland, the Ancient Sword Alliance and Ghastly Puppet Sect seem pretty damn pathetic if just a young generation practitioner can get away with toying with them the way Lin Dong has. I mean, for a region that even the four great clans doesn’t lay claim to, you’d expect the powers that have taken root here to have more domineering strength.

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The only reason the story get’s a 2/5 is because I think it’s unfair to rate it lower as I haven’t read the whole story. But from what I’ve read so far and from what little expectation I have of this author, I’m not willing to rate this series any higher. When your story becomes overly reliant on plot armor, it mean the author had been too lazy to properly brainstorm and plan out the plot. It's story writing 101. Anywats, the translators have been doing a good job as well so credit to them. <<less
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Bringing The Farm To Live In Another World
March 18, 2016
Status: --
The story had a promising premise that all but set up the main character to challenge the magic cultivation world with his unique farming ability. That would have been interesting. However, the author has a problem with his story getting bogged down by details and he failed to leverage the farm system as a plot tool to move the story forward. Instead, the farming simulator became the centerpiece of this novel; what we have is basically a description of someone playing a farming simulation game and not a whole lot... more>> of story. It would have made a far better story if the focus would have been placed on how Zhou Hai use his knowledge of from his past life in a world without magic to turn this new world upside down. This story would have been a lot better if the author had done the following:

Spoiler

Get his farm up and running faster. Problems like the carrion swamp shouldn’t be the focal point early in the story. This literally takes hundreds of chapters to resolve. Flesh out the characters. Their robotic personalities make it hard for readers to be invested in them. To carry a story like this, the MC need to have a personality like Zuo Mo from World of Cultivation or Chu Yang from Transcending the Nine Heavens. The way they are right now is even worst than the cookie cutter characters and cardboard villians from Peerless Martial God.

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Cult of the Sacred Runes
March 14, 2016
Status: --
I don’t think it’s fair to pass judgement on this series so early as others have done. TDG started with a bang because the MC was a reincarnate expert and hence he hit the ground running. This story develops slower as the MC takes longer to find himself and grow. It has shown promise to be as interesting a story as TDG. I actually find this MC to be far more interesting than Nie Li as he has shown himself to be more humble and intelligent. I’ll agree that this... more>> is wrongly labelled as the prequel to TDG. It’s too early to tell but, at the very most, this story only shares a universe with TDG. It is as much as prequel as Coiling Dragon is to Stellar Transformation. <<less
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Sovereign of the Three Realms
April 17, 2016
Status: --
Enjoying the story so far but I'm already seeing tendencies from this author that I don't particularly like. The start of the novel (first 100 chapters) had showcased strong writing; the characters were developed well, the conflicts were tasteful, and the plot pacing is commendable. But I found the climax of this "arc" and the transition to the next had been quite lacking. The author makes the MC omnipotent one moment and then inexplicably vulnerable the next. It's not quite at the level where it's a major peeve but it... more>> does seem a little too convenient. Other characters experience similar 0-100 changes to make it easier to write them off in subsequent chapters. This is in contrast to the attention to detail in fleshing out characters seen earlier in the series where their development seemed organic and believable. Just my 2 cents in an otherwise very enjoyable series so far. <<less
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Romance of Dragons and Snakes
March 23, 2016
Status: --
The series follows modern-day martial artist Wang Chao, who was initiated in the Goushu martial arts. On his martial path, he learns other martial arts to complement his skills and hones his skills against other experts. I have only good things to say about the story so far.

However, I can't give this translated series full marks because of poor grammar which does take away from the enjoyment of the story.
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The Desolate Era
March 20, 2016
Status: --
There’s been a fair bit of reviews here detailing the positives of this story so I won’t go into details the merits but focus my review mostly on issues I have with this story. For those of you who have read other IET novels, Desolate Era is more of the same. The framework of this story mirrors closely to Coiling Dragon and Stellar Transformation. This directly leads into the main issue I have with Desolate Era and it’s that the story lacks very much in originality. I can’t believe that... more>> an author can get away with plagiarizing his own work to this degree.

Desolate Era do play to IET’s strengths of world building and pacing, but falls short on character development. The narrative becomes highly repetitive when Ji Ning is basically the same stock character as MCs from IET’s other series. His background as a tragic genius from another world is not leveraged and has no lasting influence in the story. He became just as simple minded as the rest of the people of this new world, right and wrong be damned in the name of following his Dao Heart. No internal conflict arise from having to follow the laws of the jungle after living in a world of law and order. The extraordinary nature of his circumstance and how surreal his reincarnation is never seem to have an affect on the MC. He just accepts it as his new reality and assimilates quickly in the famous IET power crawl. The themes are as usual; a very simplistic search for power and good-vs-evil. This is why there’s never a lot of depth to his cardboard villains and he goes out of his way to distinguish bad people to justify the MC taking action later on. In fact, all the characters in the story lacks depth and their actions become highly predictable and routine. Overall, it’s unfortunate that IET hasn’t improved through the years but is stuck writing the same novel years after his debut with Coiling Dragon. <<less
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Shura’s Wrath
March 11, 2016
Status: --
I gave this novel a try because it was so highly rated but was slightly disappointed when it turned out to be just your run-of-the-mill vrmmorpg storyline. It’s not a bad story at all but nothing that really makes it stand out either. The game world itself was well fleshed out but the characters development outside of the game is pretty lacking. Not a lot of depth to the characters (very one dimensional) except for the MC with his mysterious past. Anyways, props to all the translators who did an... more>> excellent job. <<less
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Emperor’s Domination
May 28, 2017
Status: c1808
Spoiler

The novel is like an RPG game with good lore but boring, repetitive gameplay--if you can get past the superfluous and tedious passages, this story actually has an interesting plot framework and world building. I'd recommend this novel, but I can't rate it as more than 3 stars because it would be a disservice to other authors who actually puts a lot more effort into their story. There's not a lot of depth to the characters as most of the enemies are as cookie-cutter as they come.

There are over 2400+ chapters in this ongoing series yet there's only maybe enough actual story for 1100 chapters. I think that speaks a lot of how much the author runs up the word count for the sake of word count. As the story progress, you see the author recycling passages and sometimes close to entire chapters--almost literally word for word--just to increase the word count.

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Otherworldly Evil Monarch
October 17, 2016
Status: c168
This novel exemplifies Fengling Tianxia's trademark character and plot development. Although the MC's cultivates at a slow pace, the criticism that the he is weak is largely unfounded. The MC's cultivation level is not indicative of his strength. As is the case in all other xianxias, the MC can fight with opponents who have a higher cultivation level. The reader has to realize that the MC is from another world, and it makes little sense to judge him based on the cultivation level established in the world he currently lives... more>> in. What he cultivates is the Hongjun Pagoda, which is also something that's unique. Tianxia actually utilizes the MC's origin as a master assassin in defining his strength as the MC uses unconventional tactics to triumph over his enemies. Stop obsessing over cultivation levels. <<less
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Chaotic Sword God
March 26, 2016
Status: --
It’s apparent that the author had not thought out this story before he started on this novel and is mostly improvising as he goes. More often than not, we find our hero sidetracked for much of the translated chapters out so far. Each of his little adventures in and of itself are not terribly written, but fails to stand up to scrutiny when viewed as an entire story. The reader finds himself exasperated as the story recycles the same sequence of events. ... more>>
Spoiler

The MC triggers the ire of vast number of cultivators in which a slaughter ensues leading to cultivators stronger than the MC chasing him until he nearly dies and is left for dead. He is then rescue by residents of a reclusive village in which he finds himself having miraculously leveled up. This happens when he was facing Earth Saint Masters and again when he faced Heavenly Saint Masters. It’s seriously lazy writing.

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Like many other reviewers have said, the fight sequences are very dull and repetitive affairs that hardly made use of the MC’s past life as a master sword practitioner standing at the pinnacle of the martial world.
Spoiler

And the solution that the author found for his overused sword-to-the-throat fights was to turn the MC into Aang from Avatar. He literally became bald and hairless and controls the elements instead of fighting using a sword. It’s unreal. The entire first 400 chapters worth of cultivation is meaningless now because apparently cultivating in this world is not good enough for our MC.

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Peerless Martial God
February 13, 2016
Status: --
Somewhere along the way, the author kind of just lost his sense of the plot direction with senseless battles which have led to the story stagnating. There has been no story progression for the past hundred chapters. It's not like he's even fighting against stronger and stronger opponents. It's just cannon fodder after cannon fodder that keeps appearing with none the wiser. What started off as a promising character background and plot has quickly change to disappointment. There are many critical plot points that are written in that have gone... more>> unresolved where continuing down any of these plot lines would have made for a better story then what this novel has become.

And there's nothing redeeming or likable about the MC. He's become just as condescending, petty and heavy handed as those young masters that he constantly find himself in conflict with. There's no right or wrong; it's just might makes right. Many times, we find the MC looking for trouble and forcing other people into humiliating or compromising situations where they have to fight him. It's just kind of dumb at this point. <<less
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