Chapter 242: Fortress of the Devil and Ricardo (2)
Zone 120 of the Devildom.
This place was where out of all of the zones in the Devildom, the weakest magical beasts appeared, and as the map was incredibly open and there were a lot of magical beasts, it was a place that was good for beginners that just entered the Devildom to hunt in.
And Zone 120 of the Devildom was bustling with more users than ever before.
“Guys, there’s no time to be resting right now. In the time that you’re resting here, we need to be digging up even at least one more magic stone!”
“Yo, I’m telling you, this hunting ground behind this giant boulder over here was where our party was continuously hunting! If you don’t keep the commercial ethics like this, things will become difficult!”
“Alright, a magic stone! With this, I’m at my fifteenth one!”
Even originally, Zone 120 of the Devildom had quite a lot of people compared to the other zones of the Devildom.
However, there was never a time where it was crowded to the point that there was a lack of places to hunt, but the reason that the hunting grounds became like this was simple.
More than anything else, a reason to prioritize their obsessing over the Devildom’s contents had formed.
• 25 days from now, the monster wave of the Devildom will begin.
• Once the monster wave of the Devildom begins, until the wave is completely stopped, all portals that lead to the Devildom will shut down, and all users that are in the Devildom will be forcibly summoned to the human world.
For the fifth time already, this message rang out throughout the whole server every night as soon it was past midnight.
If the contents of the message was broken down, the moment that the monster wave of the Devildom began, it meant that they could not use the Devildom content anymore, and so the users couldn’t help but fire up their determination for hunting magical beasts until then.
Especially, the ‘fortification’ system, which could blow up the stats of all equipment, was the thing that could give the most certain fighting power reinforcing effect amongst all of the content of the Devildom.
As that was the case, most of the users were just hunting all day in order to dig up magic stones.
“Wow, damn, from what I saw in the auction house a little while ago, there were quite a lot of transcendent equipment that was fully fortified to 5, so then why I am I constantly slipping down from the 3rd fortification?”
“Yo, how many magic stones have you used up until now then?”
“I’m not sure. If I was to combine everything, I still should have used about 40-50, no? With my hunting speed, I dig up about 10 magic stones a day, and since it has been about five days from when I started hunting, that is.”
“Ha, if you’ve used about 50, it’s obvious as to why you haven’t made a transcendent equipment yet.”
“Really? Is the success rate originally this atrocious?”
“Yeah, rather than thinking about raising up one equipment to a transcendent-rank, make it your goal to get all your parts up to the 3rdfortification. Since you don’t have that much time left, that is.”
However, it wasn’t like all of the users that were on the hunting grounds were hunting just to fortify their items.
A portion of the users amongst them were planning on firmly securing a portion through the magic stones.
“Keu-heut, it looks like I’ll soon be able to fill up my magic stone count so that it reaches a three-digit number.”
“Really? You’ve already gathered that many?”
“Yeah. They continuously dropped one after another from three magical beasts just now. How many have you gathered?”
“One moment… I’ve gathered about 90 now.”
“Huhu, with this pace, we should for sure be able to gather about 500-600 if we keep digging them up for the remaining 25 days.”
“That’s right. If we combine what we have together, we should be able to get about a thousand.”
“Keu, even if we just sell all of that, we should seriously be able to firmly secure a cut, right?”
“Of course. Even now, magic stones are expensive, so if the Devildom was closed on top of that, don’t you think the price will jump up by triple the current amount?”
“It certainly could. But, just wondering…”
“In the case that the monster wave starts and the monsters of the Devildom that come pouring through from there also drop magic stones, what will happen?”
“Don’t worry, there’s no way that will happen.”
“Hmm… Why’s that?”
“It’s even up in the announcement on the official homepage, dude.”
“What does it say?”
“‘Once the Devildom monster wave begins, until the wave ends, you cannot obtain any item related to the Devildom.’ Is what it says.”
Based on such situations, no matter who it was, one thing for sure was that it was a self-evident fact that the moment the Devildom opened up, the prices of the magic stones would skyrocket.
“Whew, the top-ranking users that came in ever since the Devildom first opened up are so lucky.”
“A while ago, I saw the equipment window of some Warrior user within the top 30 who revealed his stuff, and he had gotten all of his parts to transcendent equipment. On top of that, there was even a part where it was fortified to +7.”
“On top of that, apparently they have about 300-400 Low-grade magic stones rolling around in their inventories.”
“How lucky. On top of that, as soon as they saw what was up in the announcement, they would have also begun to hunt, no? As they’ll even be hunting in a higher-level zone, the drop rate will be much higher as well.”
And amongst the users of the Kailan Korean Server, the user with the most magic stones rolling around in their inventory was none other than Ian.
* * *
The giant fortress that was in the outskirts of Zone 80 of the Devildom.
And in front of it, an incredibly large-scale battle that was hard to find in the Devildom was unraveling.
• Familiar ‘Karceus’ has used inherent ability ‘Dragon Breath’.
• 176,598 damage has been dealt on Low-rank Magical Beast ‘Maristo’.
• Critical damage has been dealt to Intermediate-rank Magical Beast ‘Coilan’.
• The Vitality of Intermediate-rank Magical Beast ‘Coilan’ has been reduced by 249,803.
Ian poured out all of the AoE skills including Breath at once.
Ian, who had wiped out the magical beasts that had crowded together due to Bbakbbak’s provoking in one go, slightly checked his EXP gauge.
• Ian/Summoner/Lv 199 (96.54%)
‘Alright! If we truly just do a good job, I might even be able to finally hit lv 200 before this sweet EXP wave is over!’
For the first time in a while, Ian poured his eagerness related to leveling up into his whole body as he massacred the devils and magical beasts.
Up until now, he had leveled up a ton of times, but when it came to the number of the hundredth digit changing, Ian thought that even that alone held a symbolical meaning.
On top of that, the meaning of lv 200 did not just remain there.
‘From what I’ve checked a while ago, the 1st place in the overall level rankings of the whole server was for sure lv 199! It’s not like they would have hit lv 200 within that time frame, right?”
The moment that Ian reached lv 200, it would be the first time that he would win the 1st place position of the level rankings.
On top of even being a user of one of the ‘new classes’ that launched 2 months later, if considering the fact that he was a ‘Summoner’ user, which was a class that was known to have the most atrocious difficulty level when it came to leveling up, this was truly an incredible incident.
‘Well, there could be a couple of guys that are over lv 200 amongst the unofficial rankers, but…’
Either way, Ian, who was excited as could be, visited here and there of the battleground as he leaped around crazily.
“Halli, over here! Pin, go and help Ly over there a little! Kaizar, you stay here with me!”
Already quite a bit of time had passed since Ian had even come to the Devildom.
However, the enemies that Ian had faced in the field up until now were mainly ‘magical beasts’, and this was the first time he was battling against devils.
That’s why, until the first battle began, he was a little worried about the large amounts of devils that he would suddenly have to face as enemies, but that concern didn’t last too long.
After having become familiar with their battle patterns, it was rather easier facing the devils than the magical beasts.
‘Instead, when it comes to combat stats alone, it feels like the devils have less compared to magical beasts.’
The combat AIs of the devils were obviously far superior than the magical beasts.
However, when thinking from the standard of devils and magical beasts with the same rank, when it came to their combat stats alone, it instead felt like the magical beasts were higher.
If, in the case of a user who didn’t prefer large-scale and didn’t have a lot of experience with them either, it would have been much harder for them to face devils no matter what, regardless of their combat stats.
However, Ian was a user who had large-scale battles down to a science better than anybody else.
To him, who was like this, a tactical battle was not a battle obstacle whatsoever.
“Kaizar, go over there and switch spots with Yankoun. Yankoun, you come over here!”
“Got it, Lord guy.”
And shortly after, Yankoun, who had switched positions due to Ian’s command, pointed his finger towards some place as he opened his mouth towards Ian.
“Master, I think we’ve gotten through most of them now. At this point, backup forces will slowly start to appear from the Fortress of the Devil now as well, so I feel like we’ll just need to go into the internal part of the castle and meet the Devil King.”
At those words, Ian slightly turned his head and stared at the place that Yankoun pointed to.
And in that spot, there was a giant fortress gate that led to the internal area of the Fortress of the Devil.
‘Hmm… If we just break through a little more, we’ll definitely be able to go inside there. I do need to meet the Devil King dude called Ricardo or whatever quickly.’
However, there was no way that Ian, who saw all this EXP piled up in front of him, would just walk away.
‘Just a little more, no, I’ll just hunt a quarter of a day more and then go in.’
As a matter of fact, the low-rank devils and low-rank magical beasts that were in the early lv 200s gave quite a decent amount of EXP.
On top of that, as these magical beasts that constantly poured out like a colony of ants gave two and a half times more EXP than usual, it was a situation where it wasn’t much different from being in heaven for Ian.
Ian opened his mouth towards Yankoun.
“Yankoun, just wait a little more.”
“Don’t we still have a lot of reserve power to fight?”
At Ian’s unexpected words, Yankoun nodded his head with a slightly puzzled expression.
“And since we’ve already begun fighting like this anyways, don’t you think the Devil King will be happier if we kill as many enemies as we possibly can before we go in?”
With a plausible excuse, Ian made up a justification in order to enjoy hunting some more.
And at Ian’s thoughtful consideration(?) towards the Devil King, Yankoun wore a pleased expression.
“That certainly is true as well. Then I will put in as much strength as I can in order to kill as many devils as I can.”
The exact moment that his words ended, Yankoun threw the big axes that were in either of his hands towards a giant magical beast that was in front of his eyes with power.
Yankoun’s axes lodged into the forehead and the chest of the magical beasts to the point that it was unbelievable, and his opponent couldn’t help but instantaneously die.
• Retainer, Yankoun’, has dealt critical damage to Intermediate-rank Magical Beast ‘Kerco’.
• The Vitality of Intermediate-rank Magical Beast ‘Kerco’ has been reduced by 225,938.
• Intermediate-rank Magical Beast ‘Kerco’ has been defeated.
However, this was not the end.
Yankoun, who saw the enemy in front of his eyes turn into a grey light and disappear, unsheathed and held up the giant greatsword that he had slung across his back diagonally instead of retrieving the axes that had dropped to the ground.
Yankoun’s greatsword that was unsheathed along with a heavy fricative sound looked like it was easily about three times bigger than a greatsword that a normal human warrior would use.
Yankoun slightly bent his knee before he jumped up into the air like lightning.
And in that moment, a system message popped up in front of Ian’s eyes.
• Retainer ‘Yankoun’s inherent ability, ‘Battle of Fury’, has been invoked for a duration of (00:14:59).
• While he is engulfed in lunacy, Yankoun’s Defensive Power will decrease by 30%, while his Offensive Power will increase by 50%.
• Yankoun’s movements will increase by 30%, while his Devil Energy Activation Rate will increase by 15%.
Different from Summoners, retainers fundamentally used their inherent abilities on their own even if the user didn’t control them directly.
As that was the case, for retainers, their combat stats were important as well, but their combat AI was a part that was more important than that.
Since there was nothing more infuriating than when a user had to employ a frustrating retainer with a stupid AI.
In that sense, Yankoun, who was exceptional when it came to skill use and also had a combat sense, made Ian incredibly pleased.
A satisfied smile formed around the mouth of Ian, who watched Yankoun momentarily, and in the next moment, Yankoun, who was floating in the air, raised the handle of the sword with both hands and he held the sword upside down.
In that exact position, Yankoun lodged his greatsword into the ground.
• Retainer ‘Yankoun’s inherent ability, ‘Devil Energy Eruption’, has been invoked.
The moment he saw the message, Ian slightly fell back as he watched Yankoun’s inherent ability being invoked.
‘As his level is tremendously high, amongst my Familiars, there is certainly no AoE skill that can beat Yankoun yet, that is.’
And in the next moment, in between the crack that formed in the ground due to Yankoun’s greatsword, a red energy with the name ‘Devil Energy’ began to gush out from there.
Along with a colossal impact that could rival the time when Bbakbbak fell almost 200 metres from the sky, with Yankoun’s greatsword as the pivotal point, all enemies within a 20-metre range were just reduced to ashes in a flash.
“Keu, there we go!”
While looking at the messages about the increase in his EXP that popped up one after another, Ian wore a broad smile.
“Ly, come over here! Over there, there are guys that are stumbling after getting hit with the AoE skill, right?”
“Before they pull themselves together, go and wipe down all of them with Halli before coming back!”
“Understood. Just leave it to us.”
Ly, who received Ian’s command, opened both of his eyes with a sharp glint as he ran towards the enemies, and Ian got on the back of Pin, who had flown over just in time.
“Don’t go too high up, Pin.”
Ian looked around at the battlefield as he checked the surrounding situation once every so often.
This was because, although hunting was nice as well, if the understanding of the surrounding situation in a large-scale battle like this was done lazily, there was no way of knowing when one would be sieged and face a game out.
The more that it was a larger-scale battle, selecting a good location was the biggest point that left the most profound impact on the battle result.
‘Ha, but there seriously are a lot of monsters. I think this is my first time since going into war with the Kaimon Empire guys in the central continent that I’ve faced this many enemies in one map.’
However, just then, Ian, who was looking down at the battleground, discovered a fortress gate, which was firmly shut, open up.
“Hmm… What is this? If they open that now, the magical beasts will all pour in through that, though.”
However, such concerns of Ian couldn’t help but disappear in the next moment completely.
This was because as the giant fortress gate opened, from within it, a monster that emitted an incredible presence had appeared.
Thud- Thud- Thud-.
Whenever it took a step, a heavy sound rang out from the path to the point that the earth’s axis were shaking.
As soon as he dashed out from the fortress gate, he shook his giant horns as he began to trample over the destructive devils, and Ian, who checked his information, widened both of his eyes.
‘A Legendary-rank Magical Beast!’
It was a Legendary-rank Magical Beast that he had not been able to see ever since he entered the Devildom.
The name of this monster, that emitted a crazy aura as soon as it appeared on the battleground as it began to massacre the enemies was,
• ‘Balrog’/Classification: Magical Beast/Level: 325/Rank: Legendary
The ‘Balrog’, a legendary magical beast that was also called the tyrant of the Devildom.