What do you desire? Money? Glory? Power? Revenge? Or something that surpasses all other? Whatever you desire…’THAT’ IS HERE.
Tower of God as the title suggest, deals with a tower, a tower so massive that it and of itself constitutes a world. This mysterious tower tests chosen participants along each of its levels towards the top filtering the resolved and capable from the ones lacking such qualities. At the top are the answers to your desires waiting for you. The story follows the journey of Baam who was alone in some mysterious underground cave until he met Rachel. Through the times they shared, she became his everything and when she chose to enter the tower to scale to the top to live her dream of seeing a real sky filled with stars, he opened the doors to the tower as well in pursuit. Desiring to find and reunite with Rachel, he proceeds to scale the tower.
The story introduces itself with a simple set-up but behind such timid eyes lies a beast of a story. The massive nature of the story spanning not only the tower levels but the years in which it existed utilises the rich history it has to drive the current story. The scale of the story isn’t truly noticeable at the start but once the introductions have been laid out and characters developed sufficiently, the story reveals its true nature, one which you can’t help but appreciate greatly. Beyond just climbing the tower it involves both the mystery of the tower and the implications of King Zahard’s rule within the tower. It further deepens the story by creatively utilising its support characters and their stories to drive the main story and its elements.
The characters initially don’t jump out at you, but after a while when you get familiar with them and are witness to their acts voicing who they are, you start becoming attached to them. They ultimately become relevant to the story as well as to the main character, Baam. The past of most of the character are left largely unturned but slowly as the story works its way up the tower, the reasons for why characters began climbing the tower and why they continue climbing the tower get revealed. Still Tower of God treads carefully when opening characters up, and even when it does, it holds back on opening the whole of that character up fully. While this may affect the intensity of affection you have for a character, it doesn’t deter you from actually caring and becoming interested in them, especially when the story of the characters are so relevant to the story of the tower.
The amount of interlinking that goes on within the story throughout the manhwa is phenomenal. Actions at one point become consequences at another point and this in turn creates causes elsewhere which leads to effects rippling throughout the tower. Everything that goes on within the story is relevant, it has a reason and purpose for why it exist just as if it were a living existence that grows and expands on itself. When you get to part two of the manhwa, you will begin to realise how certain events which occurred in part one were relevant to overarching story of the tower and manhwa.
The art which Tower of God introduces itself with is arguably not that enthralling as it does seem slightly lacking but once part two kicks in the artwork and quality is taken up several levels. More detail is noticeable, more effects are used, more emotion is conveyed, more balance is achieved through the colour and the softness of the shading. Action sequences become more dynamic and with this heightened level of detail within the world the story takes place in, you become more easily engrossed in what you are reading and seeing.
Another stand out aspect of Tower of God are the challenges the participants face on each level. Each of challenges has qualities it seeks to test within the person as well as intending to narrow down the successful participants to ones who truly surpass the rest. Psychological pressure plays a major part in these challenges, as it tests not only the characters physical abilities but the creativity of their thinking and calmness of their awareness. The fact that the challenges are kept fresh, different and unpredictable, you will find it hard not to be compelled and fascinated by them. Those challenges excite the mind and beckon it to arrive at an answer.
The richness of the world and the existence of different roles a person can take on and how a challenge dictates which role they choose adds to the excitement of reading. Characters not only utilise one role to combat others, but several; Fisherman, Spear Bearer, Scout, Light Bearer, Wave Controller. And it is the combination and utilisation of those different roles together and alongside each other which decide the outcomes of the battles and challenges. When you add in the different weapons and items at the characters disposal, such as ignition weapons, a new level of dynamic is reached and this compels you to be engaged in each of the challenges and battles.
Overall Tower of God is an incredibly exciting and impressive manhwa that will leave you addicted once you become engrossed in the world. It pushes forward a comprehensive story alongside a unique and fantastical setting with deep and intriguing characters that all serve to add and drive the story and mystery of the tower. If you desire a story to lose yourself in, it is prepared up there, on top of the Tower of God!
Thanks for reading.
Enjoyment level: 9.9/10