Guild Wars - Chapter 136

Published at 21st of November 2020 10:17:14 PM

Chapter 136: 136

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「Boundless System-wide Announcement 

Welcome to Update 1 of Boundless!  

A few changes have been made to the core system to enhance gameplay while some new mechanics have been introduced. Please check the changelog below to verify; 

- Guild Wars 

- Guild Text Chat 

- Guild Voice Chat 

- Tier 1 Realism 

- Technique Boosting 

- Durability  

- Repair Sub-Trade 

- Photo mode  

- Upgraded Intermediary Trade Center  

- Increased Number of Expansions for Maximum Inventory Slots」 

Draco and Riveting Night spawned in the ruined Plains of Deriam, right where they had been before they logged out. It looked like they hadn't even left at all, as Roma and Qiong Qi didn't seem surprised when they entered.  

Draco sighed. This was why he had no qualms birthing children with NPCs or doing what he wanted in this world without fear. At the end of the day, even with how real Boundless felt, it wasn't real. 

It was all digital. Roma and Qiong Qi were no less complex than someone from the real world, with their own goals, history, and beliefs, but nothing could change the fact that they were just a very well put together bunch of zeroes and ones.  

Even when the very fundamental nature of their world had been changed by their 'God', they were totally unaware. This drove home how different Boundless was from the real world despite the increasing number of similarities.  

Draco focused on the changelog just like Riveting Night and all the others coming online did. Each had changing expressions as they noted the various new or amended mechanics.  

The changelog was very bare about them, but Draco understood everything listed there. He shared a joyful look with Riveting Night, as everything remained the same, just like in the previous timeline.  

Nothing new had been added and nothing old had been removed. This clearly proved that they were still on the right track in terms of timeline stability. So far, only minor changes had occurred in the grand scope of things, but they both understood that things would only get worse from here. 

Neither of them planned to turtle up and act overly cautious in order to maintain stability. They would rather rush and milk all the benefits as long as they could. Then with their immense foundation, they should be able to weather the changes easily.  

Draco gazed at the changelog once more.  

He had already been looking forward to the introduction of the Guild Wars function. Ironically this mechanic did not work like how it sounded on the surface, it was far more complex and headache-inducing than just getting up and telling someone 'Lets fight!'. 

The conflicts between most guilds so far had been mere child's play. Battles and skirmishes had the goal of either vanquishing the other party or stealing some of their resources. 

Those may have been classified as large-scale conflicts by the playerbase but those received no acknowledgment or support from the system.  

Guild Wars though, were different. The system would draft laws of combat and impose various restrictions, terms, conditions and provide platforms for the warring guilds to fight in. 

First and foremost, a Guild War required a formal application with a reason. The system wasn't interested in the logic of the reason so long as the reason existed.  

For example, Draco could simply write "Gentle Flower's chest is too flat, I want to kill!" as a reason and the system would accept it. Then, the system would reach out to the challenged party and inquire about their side's willingness.  

Yet this did not mean that they could outright refuse and the Guild War would be canceled.  

What kind of twisted logic was that? When had a war ever required the willingness of another side to be started? 

No, it was the system graciously allowing the challenged party some time to prepare for a chance to gain a small advantage over the challenger.  

If the defender declined, they would still be forced to participate in the Guild War, but their losses would be minimized by 20% as compensation. Alternatively, some rules and items could allow one to avoid being forced into Guild Wars.  

One of them was that a winning party in war could not be challenged by the loser or any other party for 1 month in-game.  

The losing party also could not be challenged again for 3 months by the winning party or any other party. 

Otherwise, wouldn't the Divine Guilds have been challenged to death? 

Saying yes also rewarded the defender with the option to impose three heavy conditions on the war, as well as the chance to choose the battlefield. 

Due to this, most guilds in the previous timeline chose to accept even if it was a Divine Guild challenging them. That way, they could at least have some minor control over what was happening. 

We could describe all of the above-mentioned criteria as the 'preparation stage'.  

Next came the 'action stage', with both parties being thrust into conflict. This one was much simpler, unless the two parties specified what type of battle they desired.  

For example, in the case of Umbra vs Kamisuo. If both Umbra and Kamisuo agreed to fight using only level 30+ players, that would be the mode of battle. If they both agreed to fight using Tradeskill players through competition, that was also a mode of battle.  

Put simply anything the two guilds could perform in that would be able to give an onlooker a feeling of competition - or combat - where there would be a winner at the end based on objective values.  

It could even be a competition of who could shit heavier lumps in a given period. As long as the system agreed and had a way to decide a winner, it counted.  

If both parties didn't specify, then it defaulted to what everyone expected a Guild War to be. A battle in which both sides would pull out their hidden aces until one of them either ran out, or the other simply had the better hand.  

Lastly, there was the 'completion stage'. This was what happened after the conflict, it was just the fancy way of referring to the aftermath and cleanup.  

For example, the losing guild would typically be made to pay for any damages caused during the war. They would also be forced to cough up whatever the winning guild had specified during the 'preparation stage' and the AI would dole out rewards for participating members based on contribution.  

That last bit seemed troublesome, since most guilds could abuse it to gain rewards. For example, Draco could demand that Meiren allow him to pet Yui on the head as their final reward. Then, during the war, they would fight a simple battle with no serious losses and be awarded something by the AI. 

Haha, why are you still doubting This Daddy/Mommy AI? 

How could things be so simple? If this was one of those games from the early '20s where the system was run by an engine and code, things like this may be abused by the playerbase forcing the developers to patch it out.  

But this AI was constantly monitoring the world and slowly perfecting it.  

Not only could the AI reward you trying to test its limits by presenting you with animal dung, but it could also blacklist you from certain things or put a bounty on your head for your audacity.  

It wasn't up to some arbitrary algorithm or 'RNG' to decide rewards, the AI would assess the situation objectively and dole out rewards based on its directives.  

This was why Draco got a Legendary Treasure Chest for killing Ratchet. This action was so huge and unprecedented for a level 1 player to achieve, but Draco had done so.  

Same thing with the Nightingale's Cry survival mode where he killed those Bone Golems and got 2 Epic Treasure Chests, a shit load of money, the Battle Maniac title as well as the Unique Flora and Fauna quest.  

One had to do something worth the reward based on the values the AI considered to be objective.  

As for the Guild text chat and voice chat, they were pretty self-explanatory. Members of the same guild could now communicate freely and at any time. Voice chat could only be used when they were within the same area zone, while text chat could be used while on the same continent zone.  

Voice chat was mainly used for battle and conflicts where shouting out orders or plans would be very inconvenient for battle. Text chat was used for stuff like announcements or just general socialization between members of the same guild.  

Tier 1 Realism was a bit more complex. It was the first part of a chain of change that would be present in every update with new introductions and removals. In Update 1, it was Tier 1, in update 2 it would be Tier 2 and so on.  

For Tier 1 Realism, many of its aspects had been hinted at before. The main inclusions and exclusions were the need for sheaths, quivers as well as other miscellaneous items for daily life, hunger, and thirst, the removal of unlimited stamina out of battle, the need for sleep in-game, the introduction of excrement activities, the need for bathing and general hygiene. 

Before, Draco and Riveting Night - as well as all players - could just sheathe swords, staves and whatever item they used in the ether, which was unrealistic.  

Now, no matter what weapon, one needed to holster it in its respective realistic form in order to use it in battle. The only exception to this rule were those with the optimal trait like Draco and Riveting Night.  

Otherwise, how were they to utilize their optimal trait to the fullest? Were they supposed to equip spears, swords, shields, and whatnot at the same time? Just imagine how that would look.  

Next was hunger and thirst. This was why Draco had already learned the Cooking Tradeskill, and planned to add the Brewing Tradeskill to his immense repertoire. With those two, he would always stay hydrated and fed at all times.  

What was that? They had rebuilt bodies, so they didn't need to eat common food?  

Haha, such youthful thinking is truly pleasant to see. 

The system was the one imposing this restriction on players. It didn't matter whether you possessed a technique or a special physique in the real world that reduced hunger or thirst, you would still need to do so.  

One could choose to ignore it, but one would face incremental health, stamina and mana penalties the worse it got. You might feel completely fine and dandy, but your character's stamina was bottoming and your HP was almost in the red. 

Sleep was also part of this, and one would need to do so from now on. Fortunately, the system was nice enough to not mandate for your character to spend 8 in-game hours each day sleeping.  

'Sleep' time was part of your log-out time, so it wouldn't really be felt by players. Still, those who wanted to stay on for longer than 16 hours in real-time each day could now do so, as long as they let their characters sleep.  

However, if they died in the real world from their real body lacking nourishment, that would be their own problem. It was clear that the AI had gained something that made it fearless against any form of public outrage of such a thing.  

The ability players had to run or walk endlessly out of combat was also removed. Now, one used the same amount of stamina for daily life as well as combat.  

Before, one could theoretically run from one corner of the Cario Continent to another as long as they had the time and avoided all fights. Players would now have to travel around with portals, carriages or on foot like in the medieval days. 

Hygiene was the final and most notable addition. One now needed to bath, piss and shit like they would in the real world. One would sweat, one could vomit, one could acc.u.mulate dirt.  

This was also managed by the system, so Draco and Riveting Night's special characteristics were irrelevant. They could only humbly place their buttocks on the toilet seat and release all their pent-up anger and hatred, whether or not they had any to fire out.  

Ignoring these things led to gaining various penalties that weren't debilitating, but very embarrassing and demeaning. They could also affect social interaction with NPCs as well as form weaknesses against monsters.  

Technique Boosting was another unique addition. As Riveting Night had shared with the Five Generals when Draco had been busy with the Flora and Fauna quest, skills and techniques were two separate mechanics in Boundless that had different strengths and weaknesses.  

However, where did the AI get skills from? Was it not from the various techniques humankind had developed over the years? It had been granted access to so much data that it had derived these skills from techniques.  

Since the new players in its world would soon develop their own unique techniques, it would create a means for them to focus on this school of battle instead of relying on skills all the time like they were a crutch.  

It was after this time in their past life that Draco had begun to shine brightly.  

Technique Boosting introduced the Training Hall, which was a building that could be found in any city, from small-tier to high-tier. In these Training Halls, one could pay money to rent differing qualities of rooms to develop a skill.  

It was a lot more complex than that, but Draco didn't need to think too much about it. After all, this Update meant that the Rank 7 Guild Hall's Training Hall was a more powerful and unique version of this.  

The members of Umbra had long been able to enjoy this boon, which was one of the many reasons why the guild was so desired after. The Training Hall Umbra possessed allowed one to create techniques and hone them, as well as test game skills and receive some system assisted combat training.  

Basically, it had all the effects of the highest tier in the many Training Halls now in the world, but the key difference was that Umbra's was FREE. 

Then there was the durability and repair sub-trade. These two additions would change the playstyle of Boundless from the ground up.  

No more suicidal charges, no more swinging about weapons like they were toys, no more braving natural and artificial hazards with only a care for HP/Stamina.  

In everything one did, one would have to consider their equipment and tools. Your armor would wear and tear as it would not automatically repair itself. If enough damage was taken it could be made useless, like how the Dragorugio set did when Draco got hammered by the Black Dragon.  

One would need to take the armor in for repairs to an NPC blacksmith shop or a guild/player blacksmith shop.  

However, repairing wasn't as simple as handing over money, waiting a certain time for the blacksmith to whack the equipment a little with his magic hammer, and then everything would be as good as new.  

The repair sub-trade was like augmenting or re-forging, it was part of the Blacksmith Tradeskill. However, it also required one to have a high Tradeskill level and some natural technique in order to do it properly.  

So, it became a threefold problem. One would have to take heed to not let the equipment suffer too much damage, repairing equipment required money as well as resources, and the blacksmith handling the repairs might not even be good. 

Photo mode was the first step to live-streaming, a field of entertainment that had become explosive in 2065. Many players had jumped into Boundless hoping to live-stream it, but the function was not out yet.  

However, they still played crazily because they were in love with the game, but there was no way to show how great Boundless was to the external world, which was why the playerbase had yet to blow up crazily.  

Once live-streaming came in, many players would rely on it for a while before it would be dropped.  


Which idiot would live-stream their location, skills, techniques, hidden loot areas and strategies for others to see?? 

Boundless wasn't a game like those in the early '20s that were purely for entertainment. Boundless was a digital second world that was almost no different from the real world and had a 4x time dilation.  

If one could stay inside all their lives, a person with a 60-year lifespan in the real world would be able to live for 240 years in Boundless. Every moment would feel real and separate, despite time being distorted.  

Not to mention that one could do in Boundless what couldn't be done in reality. Every single advantage must be held to one's chest like a madman.  

There were increased inventory slots as well as the inventory size requirement. Before, Draco had paid 30 gold to increase his inventory to the max, which gave him 5000 inventory slots. Each item slot stacked to 999 and then would be split into another slot. 

The base amount had been a measly 100.  

The cap had now been increased to 6,000 which wasn't much on paper, but was crazy in practicality. Not to mention that before, one could only put in items that were small to medium in size like melee weapons, armor, and other stuff.  

Now, one could put in semi-large items. An example of this would be a small boulder or a huge treasure chest/trunk. One could also carry resources now, so they could cut wood, stone, metal and the like into semi-large pieces to carry them. Larger pieces would require manual transport.  

Finally, there was one of the most important aspect for players in Update 1, or mostly Draco and Eva. This was the upgraded Intermediary Trade Center.  

This building had already been unlocked when Draco reached Level 10 and allowed one to trade in-game currency with real-life currency with other players in an auction-like manner. There was an endless demand but very little supply, so the price for even a single bronze coin was so high.  

Draco hadn't even looked its way to make money. This was because trading in-game currency was utterly foolish, even if one was as filthy rich as him. There would never be enough things to spend money on in Boundless, as new stuff like the Training Halls would be introduced. 

Not to mention that stuff like the Divine Auction occurred on the normal. Legendary Materials and items went for over 50,000 platinum at the lowest and some even reached 150,000 platinum or more. 

Since Draco planned to outfit himself, Eva, Roma, Sublime Notion, the Five Generals, the Core members and Yui with Legendary and Epic items, he didn't have the luxury to trade money easily.  

Haha, you thought that the number of Legendary items he had was plentiful?  

Too naive! 

It wasn't enough to even fully outfit himself, much less so many people.  

His end game plan was to dominate the whole world of Boundless. If just being Rank 7 allowed one to do so, why would Richmond and co be farting about, instead of conquering all? 

He needed able-bodied members with overpowered equipment, horrendous talent, and divine skill. Only then could he begin his plan to dominate this world in the game before he transferred over to another.  

The newly upgraded Intermediary Trade Center allowed one to do the one thing that would bring money with almost no detriment.  

One could directly sell equipment and items for real-world cash in an auction-like manner as well!