Stillness

Stillness

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Yashima Chronicles

I have read multiple stories by this author and I've noticed that their characters can be hit or miss. They can write well, but in this case the main character falls flat. I think the premise is interesting, being reincarnated into 17th- ish century japan with magic, but that isn't enough. The author is trying to use Tanya's personality, from The Saga of Tanya the Evil, but with none of her charisma. The main character doesn't seem to care about things, including other people, which makes a lot of her interactions off putting. 

The character interaction also needs to be increased to do more showing and less telling, as characters' thoughts are direcectly conveyed to the reader.

The main character is also written as being extremely competent at magic and battle. This is fine, but there needs to be more of a challenge to her goals, even if that doesn't come in the form of what she's good at. The whole story is suffering from a lack of tension. The most recent chapters had a grand battle that was incredibly boring due to  how she just ran in, killed a ton of elite soldiers and the only problem she had was ruining her sandals with blood. 

I like parts of this story, pieces of it simply don't work together. I wouldn't recomend reading this story unless the author does some major revisions.


The S.T.U.D.Y. -Sucks To Ultimately Die Young-

Alein overlords take over the Earth and make it a paradise. They then create virtual worlds to populate bored humans with in order to study there behavior. There is obviously something more going on here which makes for an interesting plot hook, unfortunately, as soon as the main character enters the STUDY everything that was interesting about the story grinds to a halt. It turns into a story about a guy talking to himself and tring to survive in the wilderness.  Wilderness survival stories can be good, but this one isn't. Exposition is very heavy through out the story and as it is in first person, is basicaly a stream of consciousness. Perhaps the story will get better, but I think I've read enough.  


A Path to Magic

Of what I've read, this story... I don't think it has potential. I hate to say such a thing, but the only thing that I thought was decent was the grammar and style.

Over the first chapters there is only one real character with only basic characterization, nothing particularly great.

The story lacks any tension so far. It is implied that humanity will be fighting for there lives later, but untill then there are no consequences.

Lastly, I dislike how magic is being treated in this story. The story itself is focused completely on magic, so this is a problem.

My dislike boils down to the fact that there are no rules other than arbitrary self imposed ones and arbitrary author imposed ones. Science is removed from the world so people won't limit their magic, but if there are actual universal laws how can they be identified without science? If there are no univeral laws then the only rules are self imposed, so if someone thinks there magic should work then will it? If magic can be anything and no natural laws matter, then does anything matter? The only constant seems to be that magic is fueled by willpower. As it is, I can only see problems trying to use such an ambiguous system. Why can't I make a magic that directly enhances my willpower and allows me to remove anything I wish from existence? Perhaps I'm overthinking this, but there needs to be actual rules and limits as to what can and can't be done.

Alright, rant over. My opinion is this: I don't like this story so far and I think its going to have major issues going forward. 


Mundus Subcavus - or:

I want to emphasize that this is reviewing the first two chapters, so I can't say if this story will change for better or worse. I'll start by staying that the writting is pretty good. They style feels a bit stiff like if it were written by old english academics. The grammar is excellent on the other hand. The exposition is rather heavy, I'd add more action to make the scenes more dynamic. The story feels like it has potential to go somewhere interesting, but nothing stands out so far. That is really the main problem, it all feels dull. The main character doesn't seem to have any character. I only know he is a mage in the university army studing to be an architect. Which, now that I look, is told to me in the summary. This story needs a good hook to draw the reader in; if there is, I certainly couldn't tell. Lastly, I know people use similar title styles, but I've never been a fan of needlessly long titles. Anyway, I'd be interested in reading more once this story has been polished a bit, but as of now, it's too boring for me to continue.


The Weirkey Chronicles: Reborn across Nine Worlds (Fantasy Cultivation)

I'll begin by saying that the writing style is excellent, the grammar good and the setting fascinating. Moving on to why I'm conflicted; I really dislike the main character. Theo, our protaganist, is kind of an ass. He is overly prideful, selfish and bitter. Theo starts off the story fine, but is betrayed, killed and returns to his original world Earth. It isn't shown in the story, but is implied that he lived the next fourty years on Earth trying to find a way back to the Nine Worlds to have his revenge. I don't really get why he is so obsessed with getting revenge. It turned him into a bitter old man. It isn't explained exactly how he got back to the Nine worlds in a youthful body, but he procceds to go about gaining power all over again. There simply isn't much that's likeable about his personality and that prevents me from caring about his story. I'd recommend reading a few chapters to try it out, but don't fall for the hype.


Doom Guy Isekai

Honesty, this story is rather well written. Not much of a story other than killing things though. Doom guy doesn't seem to have anything more than a shallow character. Which, as you might guess, is entirely consumed with killing demons. Personally, that doesn't make a good story to me, but to each their own.


The Many Lives of Cadence Lee

I really enjoy the premise of this story. It is a about a girl who incarnates into an original world each time she dies with the implict command to live a glorious life or else cease being incarnated. It reminds me of jumpchain stories, except jumpchains are almost universally bad. This story is not. The main character, Cadence, isn't given ludicrous powers for no effort. While she can unlock and purchase abilities and stat increases to carry over between lives, it is clear that she is going to have work hard for every single one.

The overall story seems to be heading toward becoming an anthology of short stories with a reoccurring main character. I like seeing the different settlings for each life and how Cadence's character grows and changes in response. It will be challenging for the author to make each story interesting as well as contributing to the whole narative; though, I have seen a similar story done well, so I have high hopes for this one.

Writing style, grammar and characters are all good. Side characters could be fleshed out a bit more, but I understand it could be difficult. When making an entire life time into a short story, each paragraph needs to contribute and not everything can make it in without affecting the pacing. Simply, as it is, a lack of character interaction and development means a lack of emotional impact.

One last note, I have seen others recomend that the title be changed and I disagree with them. I can think of two published works with similar titles off the top of my head. Regardless, the title fits the essence of the story. I'd keep ot as is.


Digital Marine

I like it, but wouldn’t recommend it

This story has two main things going for it. One, the story is set in the future where our protaganist, Freya, signs up with the military for a better life. Her body is broken down into base compounds and saved, with her mind uploaded onto a spaceship with thousands of others overseen by an AI. They are effectively immortal soldiers who are always training. Two, the simulated missions onboard are both interesting and cool. Unfortunately, there are three terible things about this story. One, the main character is a Mary Sue. I personally don't mind this much, but she will rarely fail at anything she does. Two, more egregiously, Freya has all the personality of a cardboad cutout. Surprisingly enough, the side characters have more personality, but as everything is from Freya's point of view, it is hard to have genuine interaction with only one real person. Third, most critically, the way the military is run is absolutly moronic. The story is set up to make this game world simulation posible, so the military justifies the division of  'resouces' as giving only the best stuff to the best. The problem is that the entire system promotes individual excelence to the detriment of the team and the mission. For example, all 'resources' are virtual so it costs nothing to provide them, yet the individual marine has to pay for everything they use. Imagine a fighter pilot who has to pay for both their training and the fighter itself. The barrier to entry is massive and effectively cripples the military's effectivness. Marines have to get points to get better gear, training and stay in the military itself. Making too many sacrifices for the team can cripple your future, so why would you? There are some other issues with the system, but that's the most important. It effectivly makes the story non-sensical, regardless of how interesting the missions are.


The Gamer Magician

I'll start with the good parts. This story's best feature is the fast pacing. The tension in the story never goes slack, keeping the protaganist focused on solving the problems that keep piling up. The writing style is clear and the magic system is reasonably interesting. A minor issue with the magic is that there are weak limits as to how it works, only that it takes more power to do more and the need to write down magic formulas. This is an issue though because the of main character's ability to modify and create magic spells on the fly is his 'thing'. It ends up being that the solution he has for most problems is to make a new spell just for that situation. It just feels like a little deus ex machina even if it relies on the main characters own skill. Characters are decent, nothing special. A lot of side characters come and go quickly without much time to get to know them. Grammar has a few errors, mostly missing spaces or letters, still very readable. I like the setting and wish we get to see more of the world and how magic has changed the world compared to our own. The part I disliked the most was the first chapter. Perhaps it was on purpose, but the examination seemed to be designed to pass as few applicants as possible. It bafles me why the mage association would try to cripple itself.


Synergy

I'd recomend giving this one a read. From what I can tell, this is a rewrite of a previous work and it shows. The story feels quite polished. The setting feels like there is a lot there to explore. The characters are all very well done, each with their own complexities. The writting style changes in certain chapters with different POV shifts, which I wouldn't recomend as it is hard to do well, but this author has more than enough skill to make it work. Grammar is flawless as far as I can tell. The main plot seems to be focused, so far, on figuring out the main characters 'situation' and finding civilization. I'd like if there was more long term goals established at this point in the story, there are a lot of directions the story could go. Regardless, I look forward to where the story will take us.