- Mangaka : DUBU (REDICE STUDIO), Chugong
- Publisher : Yen Press
- Genre : Adventure, Fantasy
- Published : March 2021
Solo Leveling has risen through popularity even before it goes mainstream. At least, before it becomes amazing enough to enter the radar of big publishing houses. We’re not saying that that’s bad, we’re just saying that being able to be popular at that point in time speaks volumes about what it has to offer. Indeed, Solo Leveling deserves everything it is achieving. It’s even to have an animated adaptation sometime this year. But for now, let’s go back to where it began as the English version of the manhwa hits the stands!
Solo Leveling tells the story of an E-rank hunter, Jinwoo Sung. In a world wherein mysterious portals appear from all over the world, individuals also spontaneously get supernatural powers. Because of this, a new famed profession comes into being, hunters. The hunters go into the gates and kill all the monsters within to which causes the gate to close. But before that happens, humanity mine all the resources within it before the gate closes. Being the lowest class hunter, Jinwoo only participates in the lowest level hunts. However, one particular hunt changes his life forever.
1. Superb Art
Unlike what we’re accustomed to, Solo Leveling is pure digital art. That means the entire series is in full-colored goodness, which is typical to most manhwas. Color, however, is not the only distinguishing aspect Solo Leveling’s art has. The artist has also done an incredible job including the details. The action scenes are exhilarating, while the creepiness is also uncanny. Even the magic particles and sparks are spot on. Oh, and did we already mention the coolness of their equipment? The art is worthy of being called a masterpiece. Wait, no, it is a masterpiece!
2. Introduction to Everything
The first volume, obviously, is where everything starts. That said, we get a full introduction of what’s happening in Jinwoo’s world. The details, from the gates to Jinwoo’s system, are very well explained. The entire volume is all about explaining Solo Leveling’s lore. The only action we’ve seen is Jinwoo’s supposed death. Well, that’s pretty brutal, so it’s still pretty amazing. If we have to make an analogy, the first volume is the tutorial to Solo Leveling. As self-proclaimed game aficionados, believe us when we say you don’t want to skip the tutorial.
1. The Format Can be a Bit Confusing
As we’ve said earlier, Solo Leveling is a Korean manhwa. Just like the difference in art, there is also a big difference with the format, and it can be very confusing. First, the comic is supposed to be read from left to right, which is the opposite of how we usually read manga. Also, Korean manhwas are often drawn primarily to be read in digital format. That said, it’s supposed to be one long strip of comics. But since Yen Press is publishing it as a book, the format is a lot different from how it’s intended to be. As such, it can be quite confusing for new readers.
Despite the highly probable confusion, Solo Leveling is still a work worthy of being noticed. For one, it’s an epic adventure that has captivated the hearts of many. Also, it’s one of the biggest manhwas in the market that is opening the market for other Korean works as well. We’re pretty excited about what else they have in store for us because we’re pretty much hooked to Solo Leveling already.