Rising From the War of Fog
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"The War of Fog is over. Now the true period of strife begins."
- Unknown Soldier
The world's great heroes have slaughtered one another for the ideals of their countries. Amidst the post-war struggle for survival, a towering figure emerges from the Exclusion Zone. She aids a trio of disgraced soldiers in crossing the border to their homeland, and soon takes up the mantle of a beast-slayer in one of the last sovereign city-states remaining. But tensions from the war remain, and soon trouble comes knocking at the gates...
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5 stars. I'd give it 10 if I could. Grammar, pacing, character design. Everything is top notch.
A different approach to magic I haven't seen before. Characters that only fall flat when Zelsys lays them out. Intricate world-building leaving indelible marks on mind and leaving me wanting more like a Fog-addicted beggar. The ONLY complaint I have would be the chapter length. Having to flip forward every 5 seconds because I'm speed-reading it is a problem of my own, of course, not the authors.
I seriously can't find anything truly negative to say about this. So I'll say something positive and pleading. Keep it up. Forever. I wan't to read a million chapters of this and more!
Rising From the War of Fog is not your usual lit-RPG. Dieselpunk is a sub-genre that doesn't get the love and attention it deserves and every story written in it is always very welcomed in my opinion.
This particular one is well written and mature with its own unique storytelling style. Easy to read and easy to understand, yet not too simple. The only issue I could mention is the length of the chapters, or more like the lack of it. I understand that the short chapters were an authorial decision which makes frequent posting possible, but even so, the very short chapters are breaking the flow of the story somehow. That isn't a big issue, just something I, personally, cannot agree with.
The story itself starts strong with an exciting opening situation and will soon slow down a little, which is not a problem whatsoever because even without a fight in every second chapter it can grab and keep the reader's attention with the colourful and interesting world around. It's not fast-paced but I wouldn't call it a slow burner either, it found a pace that works perfectly, letting the characters and the world show themselves.
There is not much to say about grammar here, as far as I can tell, there are no major problems, as I mentioned earlier, the story is very well written and easy to read. The vocabulary is quite impressive.
As for the characters, we don't have a lot of them at first. The main one, Zelsys is trying to find and define herself at the beginning, but one thing is clear at first glance: she is a strong woman, which is always a plus. Especially because she can be tough without being manly, and she has a good sense of humour too. Bottom line, the main character is interesting and capable enough to lead the story forward, keeping the reader's attention. The three others that came a tad later showing themselves slowly, but they are becoming more and more interesting chapter by chapter.
All things considered, the story is worth checking out, by all means, it's a good and interesting read that just gets better as you go forward.
So, as with all of my reviews for litrpgs, I'll preface this by saying I do not like the genre. As such, I may be a little more leniant in an effort to not be biased. I will commend the author for not making too much use of blue boxes, which I personally find ridiculous. They're there, but at a frequency that didn't bother me.
Style: The author has some nice descriptions, and the writing, for the most part, is technically fine. My only big issue with it comes down to chapter size. I get writing short chapters so that you can release more frequently and maximise your exposure, but I feel like more care can be put into it to make it less jarring. On average, the chapters are 500 words long. This seemed alright, at first, but the more I read the more I understood the problems that come with having chapters at that length. That is, that chapters end at random points--when the author has hit the word count. It's cut off at 500 words. This creates many chapters that end in the middle of paragraphs. You may say "well, that just makes the reader want to turn the page to the next chapter!" But no, I don't turn to the next chapter because there's tension and I want to see what happens next; I turn to the next chapter because I'm quite literally left in the middle of a thought. I feel like the author can keep short chapters, but format them in a way that isn't irritating to read.
Grammar: I noticed some typing issues, mispellings and a few questionable word choices, but for the most part it's solid in this regard. I didn't feel like it would be fair to take points off in this category since issues are few and far between. The author has a decent grasp of the language, so he has my commendation for that.
Story: So, my second main issue with this one is the story. And, to be more specific: the pacing. It is glacially slow so far. I have no idea what the overarching narrative is. The scenes in the novel so far are fine and vivid, and on a smaller level the story is pretty good; but again, I have no idea where this is going.
Characters: They're pretty good so far. I know who everyone is, and roughly what their character traits are. I wish I knew more about them, since they're all a bit vague at the point I'm writing this review, but I'm sure their personalities are explored more as the story goes on.
Overall, it's pretty decent. The writing is solid on a technical level. I definitely think there are issues with pacing and chapter length, but maybe there are readers out there who like a ton of short chapters and long narratives. I definitely don't read enough on this site to know what the average reader enjoys
30 short chapters in, I don't know what this story is about or why I'd care. The MC is apparently an experiment of some kind, waking up in an abandonded facility in the process of destructing. She wanders about in the foglands and encounters some deserter types and gradually learns about the magical properties of the various kinds of fog. So far, thats it. Its well written, but what is the plot? Maybe I have a short attention span, but after 30 chapters it feels like we should know if this is a power fantasy, a spiritual journey, an experiment victim trying to recover her memory, if there will be some enemy or injustice to be overcome or what? Just kind of getting to be a sizeable investment of time without really knowing what I'm reading.
First off. I'll be real wif you chief. I am biased towards this series due it really vibing with me. That being said imma try my best to explain my kinks about this witholding zero shame while doing it.
BIGGEST NEGATIVE: I hate multiple lead characters stories with a burning passion, and if it weren't for the author mistakingly forgetting to add the tag, I would have passed this book like I have done with countless others. That being said, Akaso has managed to create a cast of characters that vibe well enough that I have over looked the MLC.
SECOND ISSUE: while Akaso does release chapters like pair of rutting rabbits, they also cause each chapter to be cut at odd angles. It tends to leave the start of chapters feeling out of place, and the ends to be awkward cliff hangers.
These two problems is why I scored the style as is. Being held up because MLC is more of a personal peeve than anything and the slap-Chop chapters are compensated for with a consistent quick release.
GOOD NEWS: Gawd damned 19th-century time frame got me aspiring for a shoot out at the local saloon. I'm not sure if there is an actual term for it, but I am a damned dirty western weeb, and so far while setting feels more like post WW1 Europe, I got major western vibes running rampant with all the magi-tech they got goin on.
While it may just be rose-tinted glasses, I have yet to spot majorly consistent bad grammar. There are typos here and there, but that is such a non-issue that a simple touch up can fix.
ROGUES' GALLERY: so you got an Amazonian muscle-goddess who totes around a BFC( big fucking cleaver) and an arm cannon to Fuck beasties, and has such a high Charisma score that she bluffs through just about any social interaction where she lacks knowledge.
You got a cyclopian markswoman who is such a cinnamon roll that it's no wonder she gets gobbled up by the muscle momma.
A soldier boy turned alchemical-moonshine brewer, who has to deal with being the only party member who can feel the horny, but isn't getting any.
And last but certainly not least a grizzled vet who due to using battle stims suffers from a form of PTSD-induced seizures whenever in a stressful situation, But is still able to be the wise ol man at the end of the day
CONCLUSION: this serial ticks a lot of my boxes while still having one of my most hated tags stamped on the tin. If that doesn't tell you something about me or the author, then it must be easy for you to sleep at night being that dense.
Congrats to Akaso for being one of the few authors that have made a MLC book that I have enjoyed thoroughly.
I spend a great deal more time writing on Royal Road, than reading on it, but I have taken a look at a number of different stories in that time nonetheless. Most of the time I end up remembering that old saying about, 'If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all' and so I leave no review.
This is one of those exceptions, the author puts together a compelling narrative with an enticing opening and a character that I couldn't help but become more curious about.
We get a clear picture of the world (a rarity in my experience) and how the character herself sees events around her, the imagery is vivid and the plot well paced for a character who is, much to my happiness, very well developed. Every name and interaction fits the theme of this fictional universe, and every character has a 'voice' of their own that sets them apart from the others, meaning you can't just 'swap dialogue' between characters, they all sound differently, and that adds a degree of life to this world and those who inhabit it, that will make this a story worth reading. Follow this one, it's worth your time.
The idea of the story is interesting enough. A steampunk magic world with the protagonist being a construct (human-like flesh and blood?) and she now goes to explore the world.
The interesting parts end here. All interactions of the portagonist with pother people are forced. I still have no idea about the character of the protagonist or any of the people, and that was after we had a lesbian sex scene.
Add to that the flood of chapters that are way too short and the reading experience is not very enjoyable.
The author should put some effort into his writing and story telling instead of these short meaningless chapters.
Akaso kept his image of writing good stuff constant in this story. Like his other story, this one too is interesting with great characters, an excellent plot, good worldbuilding, and no noticeable grammatical errors.
The only thing you can remotely call a downside is the short length of chapters but that is easily covered by a high release schedule. Go ahead give it a try it is worth it.
Cool characters and story so far, but what really makes this story 5 stars is the worldbuilding. The author has obviously put so much effort into the fog system and executes it beautifully, and that's not even talking about what we've learned so far about the actual geographical and political situation of the world they've built. Honestly unrivalled best world building I've seen on this site in years.
I know why, it's because I'm lazy as fuck. Here's the review ^^
Efficient yet vivid, gore is described nicely, as are techno-magical processes.
Nothing to say, it's clean. The vocabulary used is pleasant.
An intriguing start with a great rythm that is, interestingly, nicely supported by the format the author choose for their chapters, as short chapters fit greatly with this particular tempo.
Mc: I thing it's the first MC where the word "savage" popped up at the very beggining of a story. Impressive.
Interestingly, since extra-characters substances have a lot of impact on the behavior of said character, the author can create situations revolving around characters interaction that are very diverse and well anchored in the world.
Others: They are not one-dimensional, but there isn't enough content yet for me to forge a full opinion of them. However, their own struggles and values are depicted in an efficient way, not clutering anything yet giving them this sacred breath each characters of every novel ever should have to feel alive.
As mysteries turn into understanding, yet more is to be discovered, keeping you hooked and reading. A good mastery of balance between quick and visceral action scene and more peaceful and lore-rich scene, one of each time following one another in quick succession, give this story a very living breath. I must say that I was impressed, and my standart aren't that low either.
Great coherence between processes and lore make this an even better read. Each time you go to the next chapter, it feels like you're turning the page of a book. While strange at the start, it's a very nice feeling when you're knee-deep in the story ^^
- Stray thoughts :
BLUE BOXES, BLUE BOXES EVERYWHERE.
I really, I mean really like the application of classical looting in Litrpg through industrial process. that's genius and I'll steal it for my own story thank you MUHUHU! (maybe not steal it, but take inspiration for sure ^^ I always like industrialisation applied to magic.)
In a funny way, I thought myself thown back in the day, playing minecraft with the THAUMCRAFT mod. That's the feeling this story's magic gave to me, and I like it.
I read and made this review in one go, taking around four hours to be done with the entier process. Yes, I liked this novel or I wouldn't have devoured it so quickly ^^'
Also, this was made as a part of a review swap, but it was done with utmost objectivity to ensure a fair review that isn't here to just push the numbers up.