Forge of Destiny

by Yrsillar

Original ONGOING Action Adventure Drama Fantasy Female Lead Magic Martial Arts

In the Celestial Empire, a land ruled by Immortals and stalked by Spirits and Beasts, a young girl from the slums of an unimportant city is found to have the Talent. In the great Sect of Argent Peak, she will take her first unsteady steps upon the way.

Can she learn to not only survive, but thrive on her journey?

Updates Mondays and Thursdays. Now listed on Top Web Fiction List

Cover Art by faith0m

Original, unedited Quest found here

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Author
Yrsillar

Yrsillar

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Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
Prologue-Smelting ago
Smelting 2 ago
Smelting 3 ago
Smelting 4 ago
Bonus 1: Commencement Day ago
Chapter 1 ago
Chapter 2 ago
Chapter 3 ago
Chapter 4 ago
Chapter 5 ago
Chapter 6 ago
Chapter 7 ago
Chapter 8 ago
Chapter 9 ago
Bonus 2: Lessons and Lore ago
Chapter 10 ago
Chapter 11 ago
Chapter 12 -Zhou's Trial ago
Chapter 13 ago
Chapter 14 ago
Chapter 15 ago
Chapter 16 ago
Chapter 17 ago
Bonus 3: Faculty Meeting ago
Chapter 18 ago
Chapter 19 ago
Chapter 20 ago
Chapter 21 ago
Chapter 22 ago
Chapter 23 ago
Chapter 24 ago
Chapter 25 ago
Bonus 4: Growing Unease ago
Chapter 26 ago
Chapter 27 ago
Chapter 28 ago
Bonus 5: The Great Sects ago
Chapter 29-Mountainside Clash ago
Chapter 30 ago
Bonus 6: Charity ago
Chapter 31 ago
Chapter 32 ago
Chapter 33 ago
Chapter 34 ago
Bonus 7: Spite ago
Chapter 35 ago
Chapter 36 ago
Chapter 37 Truce End ago
Chapter 38 ago
Chapter 39 ago
Chapter 40 ago
Chapter 41 ago
Chapter 42 ago
Bonus 8: Observation ago
Chapter 43 ago
Chapter 44 ago
Chapter 45 ago
Chapter 46 ago
Chapter 47 ago
Chapter 48 ago
Bonus 9: On Cultivation ago
Chapter 49-Serpent's Treasure ago
Chapter 50 ago
Chapter 51 ago
Chapter 52 ago
Chapter 53 ago
Chapter 54 ago
Chapter 55 ago
Chapter 56 ago
Chapter 57 ago
Chapter 58 ago
Reviews

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TehChron
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Setting Aside Generic Sounding Praise

To be blunt, most of you who are reading this review likely did not come across this story due to familiarity with Quests (A CYOA story format decided by popular vote), nor did you do so due to familiarity with the author. I'm sure you came here because of your familiarity with the genre, and the desire to sift through all the generic imitation trash to find that next diamond in the rough that would be Worth It. Worth your time. Worth reading. Worth following.

Forge of Destiny is Worth It.

The story of Ling Qi is an understated one. I'm sure that if you already read the first chapter before reading this review, you'll have some inkling of what I'm referring to. Make no mistake, however; This story is Xianxia to it's very core. It does not reinvent the wheel of the genre, but it does what so many other stories fail to bother with. It takes the world in which it is set, and it brings it to life. This means that, as a result, things such as the heights of Cultivation are common knowledge. There are no hidden Realms. No secret levels. The road to Ascension is the Empire is one that is...If not well trodden, it is at least decently mapped out. Ascension is the end goal for any who walk the path of Cultivation, and that is made explicit from the outset.

In exchange, Yrsillar does not build high as most genre writers do. Inventing new and fantastical limits for their protagonist to break through over and over again. Instead, they build deep. This world in which Ling Qi and the Argent Sect live are living, breathing things. Mysteries for us, as readers, to explore through Ling Qi's eyes. And this journey is done masterfully. The Argent Sect is a melting pot of the different peoples of the Empire, notable clan scions taken from all across its borders, each representative of the cultures of their homelands and Clans and most importantly: Themselves.

Much like ourselves, Ling Qi is a stranger to the land of Immortals, and through her eyes we watch the struggle for a mortal in a land of nascent godlings struggle to find their feet purchase in the vast new world which she has found herself. Starting from nothing, and with the goal of any Cultivator ahead of her. In this regard, Yrsillar makes no mystery of what lofty goals Ling Qi's eyes become set.

Yet, even if you know of it academically, that does not mean that you understand the gulf between Heaven and Earth.

Thus, we join Ling Qi in her journey to uncover the world of the Immortals. The secrets of Cultivation, and reaching the heights of power in the Empire. Along with the many threats both within, and without. In this regard Forge of Destiny is a Xianxia story to its very core: Power informs Politics, and Victory needs no excuse. Ling Qi's triumphs are earned, her failures the result of the environment she finds herself in. The same is just as true for everyone around her, from the lowliest mortal to the most wise Elder. 

 

I can go on forever, praising the excellence of the journey in its raw, unfinished form, marred by the nature of the Quest format. But you readers who are only just discovering this excellent journey now benefit from the finished product, and to do so would be to spoil the surprises in store for you.

Let it simply be said, that Forge of Destiny is Worth It. 

Please, enjoy.

 

Thor's Twin
  • Overall Score

A well-crafted xianxia story that is grounded in the setting.  Which is something rare in this genre.  Additionally, this story has a charming main character who is well characterized with a fabulous supporting cast that stays relevant throughout the story.

It doesn't do anything fancy or try to break new conceptual grounds with what the characters can do.  What this story does do, however, is put complex characters with believable motivations into a fantastical setting.  Some were born and raised in this setting and know exactly what to expect, but others have no grounding and muddle through it the best they can.

Overall, this story is not about the main character getting more power to overcome everything that comes their way.  It is not a power fantasy.  It is more about the characters and how they react and develop in their journey to become an immortal.

A sub-theme, however, does appear.  The conflict between freedom and obligations and what freedom truly means in the context of this setting.  

Jeremy Womack
  • Overall Score

In a genre filled with adolescent power fantasy and plot that endlessly repeats, Forge of Destiny is a gem, with compelling characterization throughout and consistent worldbuilding.

 

It's by far the best Xianxia I've ever read, even with the caveat that Chinese works likely suffer from translation woes.

Deathwings
  • Overall Score

Beware, for this is just too good

This is your first Xanxia ? My condoleance, for once you've read this, you will come to the horrifying conclusion that it's all downhill from there.

This story is so damn good it will ruin the entire genre for you as you'll never find another Xanxia that can hope to compet.

golofprague
  • Overall Score

A breath of fresh into stale, boring xianxia

Greatest xianxia ever-actual characters that are not cut outs,no dbz problem of constant escalation,an actual understandable story and an actual non murderhobo non jackass protag

Better than 80% of the stuff on here

 

 

To append my earlier statement-I,like most of you,was sick of xianxia.I had even resolved myself to never read it again.Until one day I saw this.I was a bit skeptical at first but found that I actually enjoyed reading this,it was... a breath of fresh air in a stale genre of completly assholish main characters whos only reason to pursue power was a neboulous defined goal of "I will be the greatest thing ever with my super speshul cheat power,look at me im so coool and awsome,girls just throw themselves one me. consequence wats that".

IN this story however ling qi has a goal ,she has a well defined goal other than being facepunch mcgee, there is no constant last minute power ups,other people matter,the society matters and is not just superflous to the plot.I will state this right now,this is most likely the best xianxia you will ever read,everything else just falls flat.

Signspace13
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Shows a great understanding of the Genre

Finally a decent Xianxia on RR, I have found that most Xianxia on RR tend to try and compensate for the perceived problems with the genre, like excessive melodrama and slow pacing, by toning things down and adding comedy, or by speeding up early chapters with little explanation and more action, but they usually end up over compensate and end up as either boring or incomprehensible, you have shown a much clearer understanding of the genre in your work, by just using the genre to write a decent story with interesting characters, with a female protagonist no less, a perspective uncommon in the genre, and usually muddied by over the top romance when it is.

Can't wait for more!

Lucid Prophet
  • Overall Score

When I first read Forge of Destiny, what absolutely grabbed me was the characters, Ling Qi especially. Seeing her internal conflict, how she gradually changes along with the others around her as the world advances at its own pace really touched me.

The themes of what it means to be free, and how Ling Qi's views develop with time is a intriguing read.

decemdies
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This is a true well-crafted xianxia novel

Synopsis (as of chapter 32, "Heating 2"):

This story is about a commoner girl who was chosen out of the blue by some Argent Sect people to join the new round of fresh blood into the sect. She is through and through a commoner making her feel out of place when,

1) Almost everybody else joining the Argent Sect comes from some sort of noble clan.

2) She knows completely nothing about cultivation when everyone else already has a head start.

3) She's aware of the discrimination between nobles and commoner and she has to somehow make friends and survive through these ordeals, in order to never have to struggle like a mortal again.

In Forge of Destiny, we follow her through a well-paced cultivation as she slowly learns of what it means to be an immortal. This includes cultivation, arts, noble clans, and all that non-mortal stuff she had never cared about.

Despite the name Forge of Destiny as well as all the titles having something to do with forging, there has yet to be anything to do with blacksmithing or forging items. It seems the theme currently is the traditional xianxia cultivation of forging oneself from mortal into an immortal warrior.

STYLE:

They say 'Show, don't tell.' If you want an example of that, read this novel. Every chapter we learn together with her as the mysteries of the world are slow unravelled alongside her progress with cultivation.

GRAMMER:

No problem whatsoever. Were you a grammar nazi, i don't think you'll be triggered at all. Jimmies are thus, not rustled.

STORY:

This story is for you if you like the following:

a) No info dumps, with a focus on chapter-by-chapter worldbuilding

b) A living breathing world, where each character is multi-faceted from the MC to the elders to random people mentioned in bonus chapters.

c) A diligent hard-working girl (the MC), who doesn't get involved into petty fights and instead works on oneself the most.

d) A MC who is not OP. She was just an ignorant mortal so she's completely out of her element yet, it seems her growth rate is faster than her peers.

e) A clear cut cultivation system.

CHARACTER:

I mentioned every character is multi-faceted. I have yet to mention how each notable character has their own personalities, considerations, and distance in relation to the MC.

Also, the focus of the characters are on the MC and a few of her friends/ acquiantances. So it's really easy to follow who's who throughout the story. At least until the chapter i've read. You get a clear picture of each character as the MC slowly comes to understand them. The MC is the most fleshed out by the way. Anymore discussion on the MC is spoiler.

Overall:

The premise excites me. It's like you get a western writer who understands the xianxia culture really well and let them write it out without particularly adhering to any tropes of the xianxia genre. It's also really refreshing to have a female xianxia cultivator as the main character, especially one's that not a 'fair maiden peony above the rest' or a 'bewitching doctor who's a poison assassin' trope.

This is certainly worth your while. Give it a go.

 

some_total_kretin
  • Overall Score

I'm going to start by comparing this to another highly praised xianxia here on RRL, by showing what was done right or competently and what the other xianxia/wuxia did really badly.

Well executed xianxia so far (around 50 chapters in). The characters are not annoying little shits, but still kids. The young masters are aproprietally childish/b-line villanous and the MC is not exactly OP, but not the weakest kid in the bunch.

Also there is no absolutely wasted overarching overcomplicated plot hinted in the background from the beginning, that then rots and stinks up the whole story by being incompetently written.

!!!FOLLOWING CONTAINS SPOILERS!!! 

The last review I've done was  painting in the mists, where the author spent half of the first book removing everything that could even pose a threat to the character and doing bland exposition with flat characters.

I'm talking about it because I've criticised his charactrers as anime tropes without even a little bit of flashing out, just show us the character in a dog and pony routine, show his one character dimension and send it to the sidelines so that wish fullfillment might take place for poorly or not at all defined reasons.

Here is what he should have done. The characters here are anime trope characters, but they are competently fleshed out, not just shown. They act and react, not just represent their one dimension. Their thought processes and motivations are at least hinted at and stuff happens for a reason (at least when it mattered to me).

Painting in the mists removed the spice by removing the young masters and b line villains, but left the most atrocious of all - blatant wish fullfillment without any struggle whatsoever. The MC was given super duper ultra rare technique for no reason at all! He just dreamed about walking in a park and an old man gave it to him. For no reason, with barely two paragraphs of preface. No sense of pressure, no stakes in place, nothing.

Here the MC trains hard to catch up to the middle of the pack for several chapters and has a lucky encounter when undergoing advanced placement examination, where she meets a spirit that convinces his master to give her a technique that she might use. Not the strongest stuff,  not the hardest stuff, just a little bit of a better chance.

The main character of the other xianxia/wuxia is a reincarnated engineer that decided to do things his own way. He is muscular, elegant, beautiful and in the first chapter on the first day we know him it is revealed that he has a rare talent. That talent is in the next chapter shown to be basically the best there is possible to get, with a little bit of handicap, that is then removed by afformentioned meeting in a dream.

Here we have a little girl that lived in the streets for some of her life until being basically forcefully recruited into the sect. She then procedes to try and survive in the new environment and slowly starts to thrive there thanks to her go getter personality.

She also slowly realizes that she had made mistakes and not all is as it seems with her past - mind you she does not have misterious heaven defying past - she just realizes that running away from home might not have been the best solution and that her mother might not have been the evil strict person she thought her to be.

Just compare the two - the first got everything by investing nothing and is lauded as great genius, the second slowly builds herself up from humble beginngings and there are still thousands of other geniuses better then her. The first basically does everything by himself or is given everything, because the side characters are not fleshed out enought to be more than stick figures on a training field. The second one learns things from others, because she was just a beggar on the streets with only mere basics of eduation. She learns things from others and communicates and interacts with them. The first one is merely given large amounts of exposition to explain the stuff that is happening.

The combat is competently written in both of those fictions, but the characters fighting in this one are definitelly better.

Both stories are slow, but here there is at least stuff happening, in the other one, the stuff is just exposed and then forgotten.

Changed to five stars for competent example of what a xianxia is about with all the obvious clichees, which are not overused. Complimented by show and tell approach without the need for huge sinister background plots.

Zethuron
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What Xianxia should be, a really enjoyable read

This story brings Xianxia to new heights, it uses the classic Chinese setting that all Xianxia do use, but this story is something different from those and arguably vastly better.  It uses consistency, makes characters reasonable and rational, atleast as much as Cultivators can be. The common Xianxia tropes like cheats, arrogant young masters, last minute powerups and the likes are all absent from this story, which is a fresh breath of air from all the repetiveness of the Xianxia genre.

The characters in this story are extremely well written for Xianxia characters. They have their own motivations for their actions, with all of them having some kind of goal.

Ling Qi is just a mortal girl who has been selected to join the sect and enter the world of cultivators, there she learns about the cultivation world and its strange inhabitants. Her goal is a well defined but hard to reach one, she is fully determined to reach it, even if she has to suffer in order to improve herself, and for good reasons, the competition in the sect is not kind to people who do not give their fullest. The path to the top, to Ascension is a harsh one, and one can count themselves to be lucky to find people they can call friends while being on the path of cultivation.

 

The world feels realistic for a Xianxia one, with well established cultivation rules and it has some of the most well constructed worldbuilding i have read so far in a Xianxia story. One of the things i do really like, is that the people and their culture is not one solid monolith unable to change at all like you see in other Xianxia's, this feels like a living world.

The story goes in-depth to do a detailed explaination of cultivation and all its related concepts, for both the very basics, and the advanced stuff. While the story may not use the tropes that ruin other Xianxia stories, it still does use the core concepts of Xianxia.  It also makes cultivation explainable and put logic behind it.

The story is easy to read, consistent pacing throughout the entire story.  The writing style of the author can keep you reading and enjoying the story.

Grammar is good like one would expect from a skilled author, though the occasional mistakes and typos can be found, they are however quickly corrected whenever spotted.

There is just so much potentional with this story, and where it can go, and how it can expand and improve on other Xianxia tropes/concepts not used yet in this story.

This is a story for any fans of Xianxia or Eastern Fantasy in general, its also a great introduction to the Xianxia genre, though on the other side, no Xianxia story comes anywhere near the quality this story has, so reading this will ruin any future chances of enjoying any stories in the Xianxia genre.