Sovereign of the Three Realms (三界獨尊) Webnovel Review

Sovereign of the Three Realms (三界獨尊) Webnovel Review

Webnovel Details:

Novel Title : Sovereign of the Three Realms
Associated Names : 三界獨尊
Type : Web Novel
Language : Chinese
Translated Language : English             
Genre : Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Harem, Martial Arts, Mature, Xuanhuan
Year : 2014
Translated Chapters So Far : 1825/2374 Chapters  (On Going)


Synopsis

Jiang Chen, son of the Heavenly Emperor, unexpectedly reincarnated into the body of a despised young noble, thus embarking on the path of the underdog trouncing all commoners. No one has the right to call himself a genius in front of Jiang Chen, as no one has a better understanding of the heavens than the son of the Heavenly Emperor. “Genius? He who adheres to me shall ascend. Those who oppose me can find solace in hell!"

Review

Every arc had a very strong setting at the start, and it gives you lots of anticipation. There's lots of clever foreshadowing that suggests that something great and mysterious is happening, and that at each arc you will progressively know more and more about it. Especially with the world building. The first arc is set in the MC's native country, but eventually the scale becomes larger. (Becomes the top dog in his kingdom? But wait! That kingdom is only the smallest kingdom in the Union! MC moves to strongest kingdom of the Union? But wait! There's these powerful clans that control the whole Union of kingdoms!... But wait!

The main character's backstory also suggests some deeper great plot behind his reincarnation. At each arc you feel like the scale is grander, and that you're closer to unveiling the mysteries of the world building. It really makes you want to read further to unravel each of the mystery despite how long the story is.

Sounds great, right? Except that it feels like the author spent so much building up all that wonderful material only to waste it on either half-assed answers, or left very nice materials unused. It doesn't matter if they were plot elements, weapons/skills or characters. There has been some great characters that were set up to have beautiful character development, only to never actually getting those development? So in the end you're left with 2 to 2.5 dimensional characters. Some characters are also replaceable. For example MC would have a sidekick kind of friend in one arc, only for MC to get another sidekick with almost the same personality in the next arc. And yes, this means that characters either get left behind after the arc, or only briefly mentioned like they had no presence at all. It doesn't matter if they are villains, sidekicks, potential love interests, mentors, elders, etc.

Events were made to be really grandiose, only to have a medium to mediocre delivery that doesn't match up to the scale it was supposed to have. Like the conflicts/problems just mysteriously "deflates" at the end. Lots of foreshadowing is just left hanging or never used. It's like the author had a great idea but then forgets where he wanted to go with it.

The format is repetitive as well. Competition, dungeon exploring, competition, dungeon exploring. MC is underestimated becomes of where he comes from, MC enters into competition and proves everyone wrong. MC becomes the top dog. MC gets reward (aka, enters a dungeon and finds treasures). MC moves to a bigger stage where he is underestimated again. Rinse and repeat.
There are some very interesting plot twists though. Except, once again, the delivery is...

Also, everyone is too dependant on the MC to solve all their problems. MC is practically a one-man army.

PS: "Sovereign of the three realms" is a flashy title. Except it is a really unworthy title:

And no, this is not like Ze Tian Ji. It's not on the same level of depth. Ze Tian Ji is slow, but the character depth and development is fantastic. The plot is well-written and tragic. SoTR is... subpar compared to ZTJ.

I feel like if someone took all the ideas of SOTR story and rewrote it, it could have been a really awesome webnovel. Like the other reviewers said, it has A LOT of POTENTIAL. Except that was lot of wasted potential.

On the bright side, the MC is very likeable. Very Gary Stu maybe, but a fresh breath of air in the mass of Xianxia MC's. MC is reasonable, and doesn't engage in mindless violence. He has pride but isn't arrogant. He has this "presence"/"air"/"manners" that sets him above other people over how generous and open minded he is, and how he is able to take everything with stride. That's something that comes from his identity as the son of the Heavenly Emperor, and sets him apart from the typical "I kill U" narrow-minded stingy Xianxia MC's. Makes him a very pleasant MC and a decent human being.

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