Data.34 – Old Bowman, Update

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NSO had a massive update.
After the unusually long maintenance was over, I was one of the first to rush back into the world.

Three main features had been added…
‘Grow Card,’ ‘Scramble,’ and ‘Unison.’
While the names had been released earlier, the details had only been published very recently.
The turf war had taught me the importance of having a good grasp on the rules, and so I read through them so thoroughly that I almost bore a hole through them.

The Grow Card was a card that could be equipped as an accessory.
There were examples on the official site.
They were not long like tarot cards, but looked more like trading cards that would be easy to handle.

There were numerous types of Grow Cards.
Indeed, there was as much variety as any other equipment.
The biggest difference was that they ‘grew.’

This happened when certain conditions were met.
And the effects of the card would become stronger.
I didn’t know if it offered status boosts, or affected skills and special attacks.
Apparently, it varied greatly depending on what card you got.

But these kinds of collection elements…were quite appealing.
Most boys and girls liked to collect things.

Grow Cards were not items that could be acquired during events or by using NSO coins.
You had to kill special monsters in the field and conquer special dungeons.
And there were apparently times when you could win them through clearing ‘Scrambles.’

These Scrambles were quests that appeared suddenly.
You didn’t know where or what would happen.
But players who happened to be there would try to beat them.
There was no penalty for failing, but you had a chance of winning special items or Grow Cards if you succeeded.

These Scrambles happened on the field.
However, as the conditions for triggering them were unknown, there was no point in joining a party to try and complete them.
They weren’t something you went out adventuring for, but just an added ‘emergency state’ that you could enjoy.

Apparently, the difficulty was also adjusted, so solo players would have nothing to fear.
And the rewards would also be the same if you were in a party.
So if you really wanted to look for Scrambles, you might as well just go traveling around solo.
That’s what I intended on doing.

Lastly, there was Unison.
It was easy to explain.
They were just ‘Friendly Monsters.’

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When players finished Unison Release Quests, they could make a single ‘Unit’ join them.
These units were acquired by defeating certain monsters on the field, or completing special quests.
Well, it was similar to the Grow Cards.

It wasn’t as if you could make every monster your friend.
It only worked with some of them, and we still still didn’t know which ones.
I suppose that meant we were supposed to explore and find out.

The difference between friendly monsters and players was that there was no sense of reservation.
Which was perfect for a solo player like me.
Not only that, but as a bonus for my contribution in the turf war, Unison was released to me without accepting any quests.
So now I just needed to meet one… Well, that was probably the hard part.

There were also other bonuses from the turf war, like 500 NSO medals and the MVP medal.
I had won NSO medals during the battle royale as well, and they could be traded in for items.
But 500 was so much that I wasn’t sure how to spend it.
I would have to think about it later.

The MVP medals weren’t for trading in.
They were similar to gold or silver medals.
And while they didn’t boost your status, they could be equipped.
Mine looked pretty cool, as it had my name, event ranking, and Red Boar’s emblem carved into it.

However, I did not equip it, unfortunately.
People already approached me all of the time.
I would stick out even more with this thing dangling around my neck.
Still, it was nice to have proof of all my hard work.

Bonuses for events should be like this.
It shouldn’t be exclusive and overpowered armor or items.
These things were just for vanity, and no one would care if they couldn’t acquire them.

Especially for this particular event, I was happy that it was this way.
Had it been something that created a big gap between players…

No, nevermind that.
Back to the main subject.
The three new features were a spice to make exploration more enjoyable.
Up until now, there was leveling and rare monster drops as far as reasons to explore, but now there was more of an incentive to gather friends and go to places that no one else had.

Ah, that’s right.
There were also adjustments made to the balance of skills and equipment.
But it wasn’t being talked about as much.
There was a certain message board that was very popular in the NSO community, but I was too scared to look at it.
But apparently, people were talking about nothing but the three new features.
Oh, and that photo of me that was still being posted around…

Well, in any case, being able to make adjustments was one of the advantages of online gaming.

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There was no way to fix games back in the old days.
But since most games were online now, they could be fixed later.

However…while people would be happy if it was just bug fixes, they were less happy when they were nerfed.
While there were various reasons for it, the overall effect was to lower the value of what they acquired.
But there didn’t seem to be any backlash this time.
Which was surprising, since it happened so easily.

I suppose that meant that the adjustments were minimal.
I myself didn’t have anything really out there, and so I was unlikely to be affected.
But I decided to look just in case.

◆ Status
Name: Kyuji
Job: Archer
HP: 105/105(+30)
MP: 145/145(+70)
Attack: 180(+185)
Defense: 131(+100)
Magic Attack: 20
Magic Defense: 147(+135)
Speed: 102(+80)
Range: 400(+180)

◆ Equipment
Head: Windstream Scarf
Right Hand: Windcloud Bow
Left Hand: (Windcloud Bow)
Arms: Cloudbore Archery Gloves
Body: Windcloud Haori
Legs: Windguard Hakama
Feet: Cloudcrossing Tabi
Accessories: None

While you gained skills during events, you didn’t get experience.
And so I didn’t level up.

As for differences in my equipment, I just changed the gorilla fists, which had served me well, with the Cloudbore Archer Gloves.
If I was going to be traveling through the field, it would be better to dress lightly.

I also checked my weapon skills and charge attacks.

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The Windcloud Bow’s ‘Bow Shower.’
Wincloud Haori’s ‘Windcloud Blast.’
Windguard Hakama’s ‘Whirlwind.’
Cloudcrossing Tabi’s ‘Floating Cloud.’

There were also a few other things that weren’t equipped.
Fists of the Forest Sage’s ‘Black Smog.’
Spider Shooter’s ‘Web Arrow.’

I didn’t see any differences after the update.
Perhaps they were slower if you counted the frames, but I wouldn’t notice such a thing.
In any case, there seemed to be no visible nerfing.
I was relieved.
To be honest, I had been a little worried about Black Smog.

Now there was just the skills and charge attacks.
My weapon skills were stronger, so if those were fine, these should be as well.

[Bow Arts V]
[Satisfying Shot]
[In Fight Arrow]
[Bound Arrow]
[Clear Arrow]
[Burning Arrow]
[Indomitable Sniper Stance]
[Sniper’s Eye]

Charge Attacks:
[Sky Tear]
[Warp Arrow]

Good, good.
Nothing had been removed.
And the skill effects seemed to be the same.
As for the charge attacks…

“Oh, what?”

That was strange.
One of the skills was now in the charge attacks.
Strange… Strange…

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Or maybe it’s not that strange…
After all, Warp Arrow was very strong.

[Warp Arrow]
Warps the player to the spot where the arrow lands.
Cooldown: 3 minutes.

While the effect was the same, there was now cooldown time.
You used to be able to use it in quick succession, but now I could make instant noodles between shots.
It didn’t change the fact that it was incredibly useful, but I could no longer use multiple shots for emergency escape.
It would now be a trump card that I would have to save…

But I had been expecting something like this, so it wasn’t much of a shock.
Especially since it was still powerful.
You might even say that it sounded more powerful now.
It was like they acknowledged how great one of my favorite skills was.

“Now, I’m finished with that.
Perhaps I can go out on an adventure now.”

I had decided what I wanted to do.
And that was, of course, to enjoy the new features.
But since the Grow Card, Scramble, and Unison were all quite random, it wasn’t something you walked around for the express purpose of trying to find them.
And so I would do something else at the same time.

And that is…to fill in the map.

In this game, only the area around the first town was filled in.
If you wanted to see the rest, you had to explore the area and fulfil different requirements.
Aside from the first town, the only area I had filled in was the Windcloud Mountain region.
And so the map was nearly all white.

In this game, it was possible to fast travel between towns.
However, you needed to visit each of those towns at least once in order to unlock that feature.
So I could currently only warp between the first town and the hidden Windcloud town.
That made my world quite small.

First, I would fill in the south side.
The reason was because of the sea.
I had gone to the forests and mountains, so the sea should be next…was my carefree excuse.

“I hope that I’m lucky enough to encounter these new features.”

And so on light feet, I rushed out of the town.

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