—He was a low-born man.
He wandered aimlessly, but he set his eyes upon the skies far above him.
“One day, that’s where I’d like to stand. Specifically, I’d like to be able to stand somewhere around 50th on the daily ranking.”
So the man leaped, believing that he could fly the way he was now.
( ゜д゜ )
<Daily Rank #1>
…He soared a bit too high.
Thank you very much, everyone. This is all thanks to you guys… I’ll continue to work as hard as I can without dying of sleep deprivation.
Translators Note: Same here. The sleep part.
“Library? The libraries are on the eastern islands. Is this your first time in this country?”
I asked a friendly, yet stern human for directions. He was bald, had a thick set of eyebrows, and looked straight at us with a pair of bright eyes. Scars lined his face and a thick scabbard gripped tightly to his back. All of this in addition to his worn down armor gave him the typical appearance of a mercenary.
However, I deemed that he was a sociable man from his vigorous smile. It was an expression that drowned out his fearful appearance, replacing it with a warm and fuzzy sensation. That was the kind of man he was.
“The eastern area, huh… that means…”
“This is the southern island, so you’ll have to cross the bridge on your right. The eastern area is where scholars and students meet. Schools, libraries, museums… and pretty much anything else having to do with knowledge is probably over there.”
Dina and I nod in understanding. It seems that each of the four islands play different roles in the nation. Just hearing this tickles my sense of adventure. Once we’ve flipped through the libraries, we should have a look around.
“Thank you very much. We will be on our way.”
“Hey, Hey. Wait a second, miss. Don’t tell me you’re planning to walk there, are ya? It’s getting dark, ya know?”
The man stopped us. Then, he slipped a map out from his pocket and began explaining.
“The country’s fairly large. A single island is about 500 square kilometers by itself. With the royal palace and the bridges, the nation covers somewhere around 2500 square kilometers. It’ll take decades for you to get to the other side on foot.”
“Then how does everyone get around?”
“We take the monorail. Come along, I’ll show you to the terminal.”
A monorail, huh? That’s a modern approach for a change. Well, it’s not like this world doesn’t have the concept of science in the first place. Even magic exists, so one or two convenient forms of transportation shouldn’t be out of question.
“Whoops—almost forgot to introduce myself. The name’s Gants. I’m a mercenary working for the nation’s border security. Well, today’s my day off, though.”
“My name is Dina, a peddler, and this shady guy in red is Saphur-sama, my employer.”
I ground my heel into Dina’s foot, ignoring her pained expression. Who the hell introduces someone as “shady”? Although I am indisputably shady, you’re the one who suggested this outfit!
“You’re dressed quite oddly as well. Well, I’m sure you have your reasons. I don’t plan on prying.”
That saves us a lot of trouble. I uttered a single word of gratitude and followed quickly behind Gants.
“Um, if you’re okay with it, I’d like to know a bit more about this country.”
Gants answered Dina’s questions quite readily. He’s quite the open-hearted man for someone we just met. It seems like my first impression of him wasn’t far off the mark
“I’ll start with the nation’s five districts. The first is the southern ‘Trade District’, which is the area you should have seen upon entering the country. The region houses a jumble of industries competing to sell their goods, so it’s purposely placed near the gates to draw the attention of visitors and tourists. However, the constant attacks from Aries, one of the Twelve Heavenly Stars, have caused a decline in its population in recent years.”
…my head hurts.
These feelings about a subordinate that I’ve never met… are ones I’ll never be able to put into words. But for the time being, prepare to get the shit kicked out of you, Aries. Naturally, I won’t be holding back.
Ah, no worries. If my memory serves me right, I’ve maxed Aries’ levels to 800. He should be able to survive a couple of kicks at full force.
On that note, I’ll be going on a bit of a tangent. Familiars like Aries will never surpass its owner in terms of levels. For instance, if a level 500 player tames a level 1000 monster, its level sinks below 500. That’s because a tamed monster’s highest level is equal to the sum of half of its owner’s level and triple the number of his class level. In my case, the level cap becomes 800 (1000 ÷ 2 + 3 x 100). Then again, even if the formula produces a number higher than the tamer’s level (e.g. If a tamer is level 100 with 100 class levels, theoretically, they would have a 350 level cap), the player’s level acts as the limit instead. In simpler terms, a tamed monster will never surpass its owner in strength.
With some simple math, you’ll also find that a familiar’s level matches its owner’s until level 600—assuming that their class level is capped at 100. By level 700, familiars are rendered little to no use, and most tamers join parties.
Furthermore, monster tamers are only capable of maintaining one familiar at a time. Taming a hundred familiars doesn’t change the fact that you can’t summon an army. Granted, familiars stronger than players would also destroy the game’s balance. Solo players would run rampant, and the game would crumble as an MMO.
In the first place, the cash shop can resolve some of these problems to some extent. Producing a level 1000 familiar isn’t impossible. However, truth be told, your best option as a tamer remains unchanged.
“The eastern areas make up the ‘Scholarly District’, which we already talked about, so I’ll leave it out. Next up is the ‘Industrial District’ to the west, where magical engines, tools, and the monorails we’ll be riding are manufactured. Although it’s nothing in comparison to the artisan nation of ‘Brutgung’, the location is famous for its dense population of skilled mechanics.”
“…magical engines, Brutgung… both are things I’ve never heard of.”
I whispered into Dina’s ear as he continued to explain. Both are names that I have no knowledge of. At the very least, it wasn’t vocabulary from the game. Having voiced my uncertainties, Dina began filling me in in a similarly low voice.
“The magical engine is something Megrez invented 20 years ago. It’s machinery that uses mana as its source of fuel. In addition to being incredibly cheap to fuel, it’s many times more efficient than burning coal. The magical engine is a novel piece of machinery that has drawn quite some attention. However, it’s unpopular with flugels, so it has yet to completely rob coal’s place in the industry.”
So that’s what it was.
It’s this world’s substitute for petroleum or kerosene. Though I don’t know how abundant mana is, they’ll eventually exhaust the land’s natural reserves. Or perhaps, is mana an infinite resource? I’ll have to relearn common sense here.
“Brutgung is a nation founded by another of the seven heroes—the “Smith King”, Mizar. It’s a great settlement of dwarves and artisans alike. In fact, the majority of the world’s industrial goods are manufactured and exported from that country alone.”
Manufacturing… the subject is yet another unexplored territory for me. But having received my answer, I redirected my attention back to Gants’ explanation.
“The northern island serves as the ‘residential district’. Most residences are concentrated in that area. Being the island furthest away from the country’s gates, it is currently the second safest location in the country.”
“Why second? Wouldn’t it be the safest if it’s the furthest?”
“The thing is, miss, monsters don’t just come through the gate like good citizens like you. While the lake does serve as a natural fortress, there’s no guarantee that monsters won’t come and bite us from behind. In reality, monsters that fly or swim can completely ignore the gates.”
His logic is quite straightforward. Just as he implies, there aren’t monsters kind enough challenge the border patrol as a courtesy. However, I find it strange that they don’t invade via water. As if reading my mind, Gants jumped into another explanation.
“That said, coming through the gates might still be a better tactic. The lake that encompasses the nation is actually a massive water golem that Megrez-sama transmuted. Pretty amazing, right? The lake that protects the nation is actually the ultimate defense—almost like a guardian deity.”
I am honestly impressed.
Although I’m also a level capped alchemist, the thought of transmuting an entire lake never crossed my mind. But since this isn’t a game confined to a display, anything goes.
In a game, lines of code limit what you can and cannot do. However, this is reality. And in reality, there are no restrictions that determine what will or will not register as transmutation material—whether it’s a gust of wind or a body of water.
…maybe I’ll give it a try when I have the chance.
But a water golem, huh?
In any case, Megrez made something quite interesting. Mana infused water should be a quality transmutation material. It wouldn’t be odd for such a golem to achieve the level cap.
…let’s see, why don’t we just take a look for ourselves…
【Guardian Deity Levia】
Race: Artificial Life-form
STR (strength): 2750
DEX (dexterity): 800
VIT (vitality): 3400
INT (intelligence): 650
AGI (agility): 1028
MND (willpower): 722
LUK (luck): 2300
STR (strength): 303
DEX (dexterity): 263
VIT (vitality): 368
INT (intelligence): 99
AGI (agility): 245
MND (willpower): 72
LUK (luck): 208
Hmph, level 500, huh? Bearing in mind that this world’s “sword saint” is level 120, that’s laudable amount of strength. Above all, using the entire lake has really jacked up its HP. I mean, 180000 HP at level 500? Is this a bug?
Especially for golems, who can’t make use of status enhancement items, these numbers are outrageous. Normally, a level 500, mana infused water golem’s HP would amount to somewhere around 50,000 points. A pure water golem would have a slight advantage in HP, but it isn’t significant.
Producing one with 180,000 is a completely different story. It’s definitely a feat worthy of praise as the “Wisdom King.”
On the other hand, Gants is just a newbie warrior. Ah, well, using our level 120 sword saint as a reference, doesn’t that make him incredibly strong? Well, at least he’s not weak… I guess.
Gants continued explaining.
“Lastly, the central island is composed of the ‘noble district’. This is where royalty and nobility live—a place far out of reach for commoners like us. If you trespass, you’ll be arrested on the spot, so make sure to watch out for yourselves.”
So Megrez resides where the privileged class live. This just makes it all the more difficult to slip in from the front. Well, we can think about it later.
“And we have arrived. This is the terminal.”
Needless to say, our destination was considerably different from the subway terminals of modern-day Japan. Rather, it looks like the inside of an iron casket. There are no escalators, handrails, or yellow lines to keep away from. Flashy advertisements and digital noticeboards are nowhere to be found. It was just a metal box used to board monorails.
Unsurprisingly, the monorail itself was another metal cage, but installed with sofas and windows. To put it in a nutshell, we were going to ride a metal box enclosed within another metal box.
“Now then, this is as far as I’ll take you. If you have the chance, be sure to find me again.”
“Gladly. Thank you so much, Gants-san.”
“You really saved us back there. I give you my thanks.”
We couldn’t expect him to lead us to the Scholarly District, so we gave our thanks and bid our farewells. Having the patience to guide complete strangers through the city was already more than we could ask for. Waving to the kindhearted mercenary who aided our journey, Dina and I boarded the monorail.
Alright, the scholarly district, huh?
I guess that’s where I’ll make up for the 200 years of history class I’ve slept through.
【Some Useless Extra Information】
- The biggest problem with the Novel system
There were no major problems when the game first launched, so while the players continued to multiply, the number of authors seemed measly in comparison. In response to this problem, game administration invited publishing sites from overseas to fill in the gaps. Even then, the novel system was unable to cope with the game’s rapidly growing population. Most stories described fierce wars between nations, the subjugations of a rare monsters, or the contributions of certain individuals on the battlefield. For these reasons, players willing to pay for a proper story began to dwindle. It’s a tough world out there.
- Issue #2: Copyright
As one would expect, there were plenty of players who modeled their avatars after popular characters from copyright productions, and story adaptations for these players were impossible. That’s how the saying “it’s best to avoid copyrighted roleplay” came to be. Nevertheless, such avatars remained prevalent in the game.
\ I love absolutely everything! / \ I’m drying up! /