Data.18 – Old Bowman, at the Hidden Settlement
“What a pleasant surprise to have you here.
I am the elder.”
“Ahaha… Uh, hello.”
As I had likely killed something that was a guardian of sorts to this settlement, I felt a little cautious towards this elder.
What if he suddenly attacked me?
However, it turned out to be a needless fear.
The people of the settlement knew that even if the Windcloud Dragon was defeated, it would rise again.
Yes, in this game, monsters would eventually return after dying.
I wasn’t sure about the requirements or time, but even rare monsters were not an exception.
Because of this, the NPCs recognized its defeat as part of the ‘Windcloud Dragon Resurrection Legend.’
The Windcloud Dragon appeared on days with strong winds and many clouds.
And after bestowing challengers with the mark of bravery, it would turn into clouds and winds and drift away… That was the story.
I had known that the game was popular due to the degree of freedom in adventures, and being able to fight other players, but it was quite detailed in its setting as well.
And so they had a custom here to welcome any who had the dragon’s proof with them.
Because of this, the requirement for fast travel was fulfilled, and I was now able to warp to other towns.
I would have had to complete other objectives otherwise, which meant that I had saved a lot of time.
Furthermore, I was able to stay at an inn and have my legs treated for free.
If they were doing all this, maybe making this place my base wasn’t so bad after all?
…However, it turned out to be free only for the first time.
Though there were discounts after that.
Well, I suppose it was necessary to maintain game balance.
In any case, I did what I had to do.
So it was time to check the rewards and log out for real this time.
I had played for quite long already.
Now, what did I get outside of the proof…
“You who holds the proof of the Lord Windcloud Dragon.
Will you listen to my request? I can wait if you don’t have time.”
“I’m very sorry.
But this isn’t a good time…”
I will be right here, so come and talk to me when you are ready.”
It was possible to put quests on hold, even as they were being brought to you.
And putting them on hold did not make matters worse in any way.
You could do them when you wanted or ignore them entirely.
These were just characters who did what they were told… That being said, I felt a little bad about checking my items right in front of the old man as he sat there and waited for me to talk to him.
Perhaps I should try using that ‘service.’
And so I logged out.
◆ ◆ ◆
“Alright, maybe it’s time to finally check the official site.”
After finishing up my other work, I rolled onto my bed.
And then I accessed the official Next Stage Online website on my console before sleep overcame me.
My business did not involve the pages explaining about the game.
There was a ‘My Page’ for players who were already playing the game.
This was great, as it allowed you to see your characters current status, skills, equipment and items.
Furthermore, you could see how many monsters you killed, as well as learn about them.
There was even intricate data such as how far you have traveled.
And so it was easy to spend time looking at this page even when you weren’t diving into the world of Next Stage Online.
And so I would use this service to check my newly acquired items.
My current equipment… No, the equipment tab in my item box…this one.
◆ Windcloud Haori
Magic Defense: 75
Weapon skill: Windcloud Blast
Create a powerful blast of wind in a specific direction.
The stats were so powerful…!
But out of all the different types of equipment, it had the most important function, as it protected the torso.
And the design was incredibly cool.
It was made of blue cloth with white cloud patterns.
And there were lines throughout it that represented wind.
This was sure to get people to turn their heads when I walked through town.
And while the Windcloud Blast skill was quite simple, it seemed like something that would have many different uses.
At least, it was unlikely to be a bad match for someone who used arrows.
◆ Windguard Hakama
Magic Defense: 60
Weapon Skill: Whirlwind
Greatly decreases falling speed.
Reduces total weight.
It was the same ‘legs’ category as pants.
The numbers weren’t as good as the haori, but the skill was quite interesting.
I would have to test it out first, but did this mean that I could use Windcloud Blast to create a wind and then ride on it?
As for ways to use it during combat, I guess reducing fall damage was the most obvious.
How cool would it be if I could land perfectly after falling from a great height or being knocked into the air from an attack?
◆ Cloudcrossing Tabi
Weapon Skill: Floating Cloud
Creates a cloud that you can ride.
Make up to three per hour.
Disappears after five minutes.
The ‘feet’ category was more for raising speed than defense.
And since ‘clouds’ were like the symbol of freedom and lightness, the speed boost was quite impressive.
Or at least, that’s what I thought.
My knowledge of equipment was not extensive enough to make comparisons…
The skill was also quite simple.
It sounded like I would be able to make the same kind of cloud platforms that I stood on during the fight with the Windcloud Dragon?
However, there were strict restrictions.
Otherwise you could make endless clouds and go anywhere.
That being said, it meant I could stay in the air for fifteen minutes.
That was great.
I couldn’t wait to put it to the test.
Ah, it was so exciting.
It was a childish analogy, but I did feel like someone who had gotten a new toy, but wasn’t allowed to play with it yet.
I just couldn’t wait to log in again.
And so I decided to sleep.
◆ ◆ ◆
The next day, I logged in and found myself at the ‘Windcloud Hidden Settlement’ inn.’
Obviously, you started in the spot that you logged out of.
In other words, the elder was still sitting there and staring at me.
And while I wanted to test out my equipment, I felt bad about leaving him hanging.
Perhaps it would be best to at least listen to the quest details first.
“Um, what is it that you wanted to ask me? I have some time now…”
“Ohh! You will listen to my request!? It is quite simple! I want you to climb up Mount Windcloud and destroy the evil, monstrous presence that plagues us! The Hundred-Eyed Demon Lizard!”
“Hundred-Eyed Demon Lizard…?”
Was that like a frilled lizard?
I really had no idea.
But a hundred eyes…
I suppose that meant it was a lizard with a lot of eyeballs.
And in action rpgs, a bow was your number one friend when attacking an enemy’s eyes.
There would be enemies with lots of eyes that you had to attack a certain number of times.
Then its actual weakness, a single large eye would be exposed, which you could attack to deal some great damage.
Repeat this about three times and you could kill the boss.
It was the old fashion way to kill bosses with lots of eyeballs.
“Will you accept this quest?”
“Yes, I will.”
It was the right foe for an archer.
And I wanted to see how that old strategy would work in the latest VR game.
Besides, using the Windcloud set for the first time while protecting the Windcloud Settlement did not sound bad at all.
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