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Pilz

Similarities with WOT and Sword of Truth (SOT) Series

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//Spoilers for both series//

 

Hello, WOT fans. I made it through ToM about a month ago, and read the Sword of Truth (SOT) series a couple years ago (including a re-read). I have found many cool similarities; although, the two series are very different. This post has nothing to do with accusing either author of copying. It is merely to point out some observations. Of course I inderstand that many similarities are due to common themes in fantasy/fiction literature.

 

The following are similarities of both series:

 

The series begins with a young man, living a relatively peaceful life until a (magical) visitor comes to town. The man and some friends end up leaving with the visitor, and thus begins the adventure (yes, very common, I know).

 

The visitor comes during a village festival/celebration.

 

After the visitor comes, they are attacked by creatures never before seen by anyone in that region. The visitor helps them escape.

 

The young man has been raised by his father because his mother died early. Also he finds out that his biological parents aren't who he thought.

 

In both series, the man was taught something by his father that becomes significant later.

 

 

Next post continues :)

Edited by Pilz

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In both series, the main protagonist discovers that he is a person of much prophesy, who must lead the forces of the light against the forces of the dark in the Final Battle if there is to be any hope for the world.

 

In both, he is surrounded by powerful women who think that he has no idea what he is doing (because of his background), and spend much effort trying to get him to do something else.

 

In both series, there is a powerful organization of ageless, magic-wielding women who have an important influence on men who can use magic.

 

Also, in both, there is a subset of that organization that secretely serves the Dark One. A key plot line is how to root out the 'bad' sisters from the 'good.'

 

In the second book of both series, we are introduced to a sister of similar names, who accompany the protagonist on the next part of his journey. These exact sisters have an important role in flushing out the 'bad' sisters. (Verin in WOT, and Verna in SOT)

 

The leaders of these organizations are removed from power early in the series, but they go into hiding and pursue another important missions.

 

In both series, the main protagonist is captured and tortured. The effects of this lead to important emotional changes (bad for WOT and good for SOT). Both have collars that are made for both pain and teaching of magic-wielding individuals.

 

Continued...

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Campbell

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jungian_archetypes

 

At the level of generality that you're talking about, most fantasy stories fit that mold. Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Sword of Truth, Harry Potter, The Wheel of Time...

 

E: Though, I think it's inarguable that Terry Goodkind took some of his cues from Robert Jordan.

Edited by Seth Baker

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In both series, the hero represents a return of a specific magic that hasn't been seen in thousands of years. Both are very powerful, but have trouble knowing how to use magic at times, which can lead to illness.

 

In both series, an ancient form of long distance Traveling is re-learned in the 3rd-4th book.

 

Late in both series, the authors seem to get a bit off track, delaying the resolution of the key story lines. (Yes, this is opinion, but widespread of fans of both series)

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Campbell

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jungian_archetypes

 

At the level of generality that you're talking about, most fantasy stories fit that mold. Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Sword of Truth, Harry Potter, The Wheel of Time...

 

E: Though, I think it's inarguable that Terry Goodkind took some of his cues from Robert Jordan.

 

Yes, I understand that, which is why this wasn't meant to be critical or controversial. Most similarities are common. But I think the similarities with the Aes Sedai and the Sisters of the Light are the most interesting.

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You might enjoy tvtropes. :biggrin:

 

Pebble in the pond and ta'veren seem very similar.

Super fire Bale and Wizard varieties.

Prophecy and an active participation by certain prophets(Gitara, Elaida and Nathan).

Both of the wizard/mentors moralities seem rather gray.

 

Can't the think of to many that aren't something normal in fantasy.

I wasn't a big fan of SoT to be honest. And some people feel as I do.

Especially since some of the things in his books seem filched.

Just my opinion though.

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//Spoilers for both series//

 

Hello, WOT fans. I made it through ToM about a month ago, and read the Sword of Truth (SOT) series a couple years ago (including a re-read). I have found many cool similarities; although, the two series are very different. This post has nothing to do with accusing either author of copying. It is merely to point out some observations. Of course I inderstand that many similarities are due to common themes in fantasy/fiction literature.

There are many similarities between WoT and SoT. There is one important difference, though:

 

From USA Today 4 August 2003:

 

Haddonfield, NJ: Second Question - I've noticed similarities between your Sword of Truth series and Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series...(Black Sisterhood vs. Black Ajah; The Order vs. The Seanchan; Richard vs. Rand both discovering their powers, both have Nameless evil Gods...etc.) I've often voiced my suspicion that these two series might be occurring on the same world...how crazy am I?

 

Terry Goodkind: If you notice a similarity, then you probably aren't old enough to read my books.

 

From USA Today 5 January 2004:

 

Delmar, NY: Have you ever read or heard about the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind? After reading the series it is obvious many of the main ideas are copied from the WoT.

 

Robert Jordan: I'm aware of Mr. Goodkind.

 

Robert Jordan's blog 15 July 2006 - NO CHAMPAGNE YET

 

For Richard Scholten, I have never discussed anything whatsoever with Terry Goodkind. I suggest that you check the publication dates of his books and mine. Of course, he says he has never read me, or so I'm told, and I would never contradict a statement like that. Just check out the pub dates on his books, and the pub dates on mine, those that contain the similarities you speak of.

Edited by Terez

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Yep. I'm quite biased on the subject. I find the Wheel of Time enthralling. I was bored with Sword of Truth after Wizard's First Rule. I find the WOT world to be deep. SOT just felt like Richard, Kahlan and Zedd were walking through an empty world with three cities, a town, and some Mud People. Unlike RJ who planned everything out in advance, it seemed to me like TG just sectioned off parts of his world and, once he'd resolved all the conflicts in the part he'd exposed to us, he then would just let a barrier fall and make the world bigger.

 

I'd be willing to forgive that if Terry Goodkind weren't such a prick about it. :laugh:

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comparing common tropes isn't the same as actual similarities. The Sword of Truth might have been initially written with an outline based on the Wizards Rules, but there was no sincere continuity to the story other than that the various characters started where they were when the previous book ended.

 

The last 4 books of TSoT were only able to tie up the conflicts by pulling crap out of thin air.

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Yep. I'm quite biased on the subject. I find the Wheel of Time enthralling. I was bored with Sword of Truth after Wizard's First Rule. I find the WOT world to be deep. SOT just felt like Richard, Kahlan and Zedd were walking through an empty world with three cities, a town, and some Mud People. Unlike RJ who planned everything out in advance, it seemed to me like TG just sectioned off parts of his world and, once he'd resolved all the conflicts in the part he'd exposed to us, he then would just let a barrier fall and make the world bigger.

 

I'd be willing to forgive that if Terry Goodkind weren't such a prick about it. :laugh:

 

Yeahp, actually had a convo about it with some friends on a game, and a guy who works in the movie industry and reads scripts, read Goodkind, and just finished the series because damnit he started reading, and that's just polite. This friend said "every book is a thousand pages with one memorable moment and nothing else."

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Ah Goodkind. Worldbuilding from WoT, thematic content from Ayn Rand, sexual content for BDSM Weekly... and what does he bring to the mix? Richard and Kahlan get seperated and reunited. Rinse and repeat. Oh, and add a chicken-which-isn't-a-chicken.

 

I'd be less contemptuos if he hadn't told a fourteen year old that he 'was afraid of the truth' because he wanted more sword-fights and less Richard giving speeches to strawmen in the later books.

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I liked WFR. Then SoT kinda goes off the rails. The whole series is basically Goodkind using fantasy to preach his own beliefs. Or at least thats how the series comes off to me.

 

 

The ending trilogy also comes out of left field. Such a horrible ending to the series.

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If all of the Forsaken Die while rand is playing a game of stones against Moridin, then Perhaps, in a small way there is a comparisson.

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I read TSoT series at the same time as I was reading Wheel of Time, both as each book came out. I noticed that TSoT used ideas about 2 years after WoT, to the point where I stopped reading TSoT because it seemed to me it was just copying.

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Ah Goodkind. Worldbuilding from WoT, thematic content from Ayn Rand, sexual content for BDSM Weekly... and what does he bring to the mix? Richard and Kahlan get seperated and reunited. Rinse and repeat. Oh, and add a chicken-which-isn't-a-chicken.

 

I'd be less contemptuos if he hadn't told a fourteen year old that he 'was afraid of the truth' because he wanted more sword-fights and less Richard giving speeches to strawmen in the later books.

 

THIS. So much this! The author is a prick, and RJ's comments about it just seem to say, "I know he ripped off my work, but I'm a professional and can't/won't accuse him of plagiarism without rock-solid, undeniable proof, which I couldn't be bothered to gather."

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Ah Goodkind. Worldbuilding from WoT, thematic content from Ayn Rand, sexual content for BDSM Weekly... and what does he bring to the mix? Richard and Kahlan get seperated and reunited. Rinse and repeat. Oh, and add a chicken-which-isn't-a-chicken.

 

I'd be less contemptuos if he hadn't told a fourteen year old that he 'was afraid of the truth' because he wanted more sword-fights and less Richard giving speeches to strawmen in the later books.

 

C'mon Luckers. Tell'm how you really feel. You're an admin; you should be able to get away with it :D

Edited by Elend

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Well, in my country the first three volumes of Goodkind's SoT were translated and published before tEoTW (in late 1998). I thought that Goodkind's work is... well,... acceptable, maybe. Then I started reading WoT and although the writing was so much better, I thought that Jordan is stealing from Goodkind. :rolleyes: Until I looked at the release dates on the first pages :ohmy:

The result was that I never read SoT after book 3

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Ah Goodkind. Worldbuilding from WoT, thematic content from Ayn Rand, sexual content for BDSM Weekly... and what does he bring to the mix? Richard and Kahlan get seperated and reunited. Rinse and repeat. Oh, and add a chicken-which-isn't-a-chicken.

 

I'd be less contemptuos if he hadn't told a fourteen year old that he 'was afraid of the truth' because he wanted more sword-fights and less Richard giving speeches to strawmen in the later books.

 

THIS. So much this! The author is a prick, and RJ's comments about it just seem to say, "I know he ripped off my work, but I'm a professional and can't/won't accuse him of plagiarism without rock-solid, undeniable proof, which I couldn't be bothered to gather."

100% agreed on all points here. I read the first 2 books of SoT. Wizard's First Rule was ok, and could stand on its own, perhaps. But when Stone of Tears rolled out, it was painfully obvious Goodkind was ripping off RJ (e.g. Sisters of the Dark, and there are many other "similarities" that can be pointed out).

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So I wasn't imagining the similarity then. I'm starting the WOT series with the prequel, and the pub dates on it were after the SOT's first book. It wasn't until I checked the date on the true first book in the series of WOT that I understood what had happened.

 

As an author, it bothered me incredibly when I found out that other books featured some of (what I thought were) my own plots and character descriptions even though I had never read those other books. As I read more broadly in my own genre, it's becoming clear that it happens quite often. But some of the similarities between WOT and SOT seem to be too close for comfort (sisters of light and dark, mainly). If Goodkind had never read the books of Jordan, then when he found out how close the story lines were he must have felt sick. I hate how he denies there are even similarities, though.

 

Madison Woods

Edited by Madison Woods

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I'm starting the WOT series with the prequel,

 

Madison Woods

Bad idea.

 

I seem to feeling rather viperish today. I also hear that a certain writer, on hearing that I had heart problems, announced that his cardiologist, on holding his (the writer’s) heart in his hands said that he could have been holding the heart of a sixteen year-old or some such. My cardiologist told me much the same thing, but I made him give it back. Ahem. A question occurs. What was wrong that anyone had their filthy fingers palping his actual heat. All my heart examinations have been via catheritazation or electrocardiogram or echocardiogram or the like. Only if they saw cause would anyone be sticking fingers into my chest must less fingering my heart. Some discrepancy there, eh?

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I am a fan of both Wheel of Time and Sword of Truth in fact they are my two favorite fantasy series and while I like WoT better I do not agree that SoT is bad, however my point with this post is not to argue for the quality of SoT as whatever or not one like a book series is rather subjective. Now to the topic at hand. Yes I can clearly see some similarities between SoT and WoT but many of those similarities are generic to most fantasy of it's type. I have seen it mentioned in this thread the idea of a young nobody who is taken from home by a magickal person, get attacked by strange creatures, learn magic and have a destiny to fight evil, but really this set up is a part of at least 70 percent of all fantasy series I have ever read, are you saying they are all ripping off WoT? And it is not only books, look at for example Star Wars that have the exact same set up, Luke is the nephew of a farmer who have raised him as a son and he gets taken away by a magickal person, get to learn magic and have a destiny to defeat evil. You might as well say that one architect is ripping of another if he to uses four walls and a roof as the ground design for the building. Also if you look at it Lord of the Rings did this as well and that series was published a long time before Wheel of Time, the only difference is that Frodo never learns magic, though he do get several magical items that he uses through the story. Also as for being attacked by strange creatures, the Ringwraiths in Lord of the Rings are much closer to Fades in Wheel of Time that the Gar that attacks Richard near his home in Wizard's First Rule is.

 

Now it is also mentioned that both series have a big bad evil force for the main character to fight against, well this is also very common in most epic high fantasy series, Lord of the Rings have Sauron for example. You can not say that a series that have a big bad evil entity is ripping of WoT since so many series have had that, long before WoT was even published, I mean the idea of man fighting against what is essentially the Devil is something that have been used since mankind first started telling stories, this is not unique to Wheel of Time. Also we have to look at the role of said evil force in the stories, in WoT the main core of the story is that the main character is to fight this being, in SoT the Keeper is sort of just there, sure he do get involved and his agents create trouble, but the main focus is on Richard fighting human beings and trying to bring his idea of justice to the world, both have a Devil like creature as an antagonist yes, but the role of said creature is very different withing the setting. Now prophecy, magic swords, adoptive parents, a magic that have been lost for X number of long times that is not rediscovered, all of this are common elements in high fantasy and are not unique to WoT.

 

Now I once heard similar arguments fro some WoT fans that Eragon is a ripof of WoT since it have an protagonist who is a farmer's son, is destined to save the world, learns magic and oh yes there is dragons and I said but you are basically describing about every high fantasy story out there. WoT do not own the idea of the young nobody who learns magic and saves the world, that archetype have been around far longer than the Wheel of Time series and I do recommend anyone who thinks otherwise to check out A hero with a thousand faces by Joseph Cambell.

 

Now are there some similarities between WoT and SoT however which is not that generic, the idea of gender separated magic, though not unique to WoT is definitely one such thing. However even when there are very similar concepts like for example male channelers vs male confessors the way this is used in the two settings are very different. In WoT the taint on saidin is used as something for the main character to overcome for himself and for others, for SoT there are no male confessor characters, it is rather used as a tragedy to hold over the main character's heads as thee is a prophecy that if they ever have a child it will be a son and then they will be left with a choice, kill this baby or watch him wreck havoc on the world. Now even if male confessors was inspired by male channelers they are so differently used that you can not say they are a ripof.

 

Now as for the Sisters of the Light, yes they are very similar to Aes Sedai...very similar and I agree that that I think Terry Goodkind have gotten the idea from WoT or he might have gotten the idea from Dune which also have a very similar all female order of magic users. In fact one thing that annoy me just a little bit about this thread is that Terry Goodkind is ragged on allot for potentially getting some ideas from WoT and then changing them around quite allot for his own setting, while it is quite okey that Jordan took quite a bit of things from Dune, in fact Dune and WoT are allot more similar than WoT and SoT is. Now my opinion however is that it do not matter if an author have gotten an idea from another work of fiction and then have something similar in his or her own work as long as it is changed around enough to not be a direct ripof and really the Sisters of the Light is the only things that I would consider to be a ripof of sorts from WoT, the rest of the similarities is of the sort that I can nod and say, oh that must have been inspired by WoT, but it is so different as well that it is definitely it's own thing, inspired by is not the same as a rip of. So a'dam and rada'han, yes the rada'han is a rip of, even the name sound similar, that wizards and sorceresses have problems learning from one another is not a ripoff of WoT however, it can be inspired by it, but the magic system and everything around is so different that here we are talking about either coincidence or being inspired by WoT not ripping it of.

 

Now as for Seanchan vs the Order, I do not see the similarities there really other than that they are both empires that want to take over the world. I mean you can not say that since WoT have used this concept no other fantasy can ever use it again, in fact the empire in The Riftwar Saga is much more similar to Seanchan than the Order in SoT is I do not see anyone screaming ripoff there.

 

Yes there are similarities between Sword of Truth and Wheel of Time, but I think that is more that they are of the same genre, there are similarities between most epic high fantasy series. it is the same that there are allot of similarity between CSI and Criminal Minds as they are the same kind of show, that do not mean that one of the ripoff the other, and if one get an idea from some other source of fiction, like I said I see no problem with that as long as it is changed enough to not be a complete copy and for the most part this is the case with SoT.

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This topic has been covered many times in many threads. Despite the obvious similarities that go far beyond regular fantasy tropes(and quotes Terez gave a page back that are rather telling.) To say they are mereley "the same genre" is a gross understatement and ignore the facts. Luckers also addresses the issues with the story itself on the previous page. Lastly Goodkind went so far as to mock RJ when he was dying from his heart issues. In fact it was so bad that RJ felt the need to respond in his last ever blog post. Goodkind is a ripoff, a hack and just an overall terrible human being.

Edited by Suttree

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