Chapter 26 - Chain Quest
Gu Fei did not put the matters regarding the guild to heart, hurriedly leaving to meet someone by the fountain square in the heart of Yunduan City.
Gu Fei could already see Fleeting Smile, who was waving his hand with a face full of smiles, from afar.
“What’s up?” Fleeting Smile immediately asked when Gu Fei came over.
“I’ve something I wish you could advise me on,” Gu Fei said.
Fleeting Smile grinned, “I am a scrupulous gaming employee, so there’s a limit to the information you can get from me.”
“Tell me what you can, and leave out what you can’t,” Gu Fei casually drawled.
“Hm. Go ahead.”
Gu Fei took out Eddie’s Emblem. Fleeting Smile casually glanced at the emblem at first and did a double-take at it the next, totally disregarding Gu Fei who was next to him in the process. The emblem was like a firefly in the pitch darkness of night, capturing his entire attention.
“Where did you get this?!” Fleeting Smile snapped back to his senses and grabbed Gu Fei’s hand as he pulled the emblem close to examine it in greater detail.
Gu Fei narrated what had happened as Fleeting Smile stood rooted to the spot.
“I went to the official website last night to have a look, yet I couldn’t find any information regarding it. So I decided to ask you. Tell me if you can, and I won’t ask further if you can’t,” Gu Fei said.
Fleeting Smile lifted his hand and pinched his own face to confirm this was not a dream, as well as to remove the shocked expression that had settled on his face as he stood like a statue. He took a deep breath and said, “This is a quest item.”
“I know that…” Gu Fei said.
“Compared to the usual quests, this quest is quite special. We call it a chain quest,” Fleeting Smile explained.
“Chain quest?” Gu Fei felt his head becoming clear as he remembered coming across this term on the website. Compared to an ordinary quest, it was much more complicated and random.
There was a reason why it was called a chain quest. If a normal quest was formed by a single task, then putting in a number of tasks together would form a chain. Thus, it was known as a chain quest. There were many such tasks all over the game, so even an average street might contain a normal quest that could become part of a chain quest.
The system freely formed the sequence and casually placed the countless tasks of a chain quest everywhere in the game. It then proceeded to choose from the numerous plots the game had and link it toward the relevant task. The system accordingly gave a reward for the completion of a task with regard to its level of difficulty. Once a player finished a chain quest, the system would choose from another set of tasks and would sequence a new chain quest. Although the number of chain quest would never change, the content would never be repeated. While it was possible for the system to sequence an exact replica of another chain quest, the chances were infinitesimally small.
Such a design meant it was not difficult to uncover a quest chain. The various ways players could trigger the conditions were neither too strange nor too incredible. However, whether the chain quest could be successfully completed after finding it depended entirely on the player. As there were many ways a chain quest could be arranged by the system, it was entirely possible for one step to be as simple as delivering an item and the next step to be as difficult as battling high-level monsters. Therefore, it was not improbable for players to acquire a quest chain at level 0 but only be able to accomplish the next step at an extremely high level.
The quest chain Gu Fei had picked up was actually not too difficult to trigger. It was a fairly normal quest called 'The Kidnapped Eddie' obtainable in the later stages of the game.
But the key point here was exactly that: the later stages.
A good example would be how the players handled the game with their current standards; legendary gamers like Young Master Han and Sword Demon came up with the method to kill off Sooto by trapping him in the small hut and slowly reducing his HP to 0. In actuality, the first one to be dead with that method would not be Sooto, but rather Eddie who was trapped in the corner of the hut with barely half a breath left.
There would naturally be no way to attain the quest with a dead Eddie.
There were two conditions the players must meet if they wished to keep Eddie alive and hear his dying wish.
First, Sooto must feel safe. This way, he would not feel threatened and immediately dispose of Eddie who was right beside him.
Second, Eddie must feel safe as well. This way, he would be at ease to relegate his task to the players.
There was only one way to achieve both conditions: A player would have to solo kill Sooto on his own.
Sooto would not feel threatened if there was only one opponent; only by killing Sooto would Eddie be at ease to pass his final task to a player. If it was a normal quest, Eddie would only speak his parting words. But since Gu Fei had coincidentally triggered the chain quest, Eddie’s parting words became his dying will, asking the player to carry on his unfinished business. No matter the case was, only a high level and highly skilled player would have the ability to kill Sooto alone.
Fleeting Smile had some notion of Gu Fei’s ability, yet he could not help but be taken aback after hearing about what Gu Fei had just accomplished. Fleeting Smile had considered the possibility of someone like Gu Fei to bring some imbalance in-game; however, the game-breaking potential he had in mind was just limited to PvPs among the players, where individuals like Gu Fei would gain the upper hand. Never would he have thought that even the NPC bosses would not be a match for Gu Fei as well.
Fleeting Smile had tuned out even though Gu Fei was still talking. As a core member among the gaming developers, he had already been instinctively considering ways to restrict players like Gu Fei in order to maintain game balance.
“Hey! Hey!” Gu Fei’s calls brought Fleeting Smile back from his thoughts again.
“What were you thinking just now?” Gu Fei questioned, “I’m asking you why the quest details weren’t mentioned on the website.”
“Oh…” Fleeting Smile recovered, “Chain quests are acquired by chance, so it’s impossible for the site to have information on them. Players would need to find information pertaining to chain quests by themselves.”
“Can’t you give me a clue?” Gu Fei asked.
Fleeting Smile flashed Gu Fei a shy smile, “I am a scrupulous gaming emplo—”
“Alright, I got it!” Gu Fei was very straightforward, “Guess I’ll have to search on my own. I’m off!”
“Take care!” Fleeting Smile waved.
“You, too!” Gu Fei turned and left.
Gu Fei went back to his original grinding spot after traveling for ten minutes. He had lost count of how many days he had stayed in this map ever since the experience points that was needed to level up skyrocketed once he reached level 30. A majority of players no longer solely depended on grinding monsters to level up unlike Gu Fei, as the various quests of the game would also reward the players with plenty of experience points. While it might not be as efficient as grinding monsters, at least it was not boring. Running from place to place, talking to people, and occasionally engaging in fights, questing was truly much more interactive and fun.
As for Gu Fei, he found grinding to be highly enjoyable since fighting monsters required the use of kung fu. If he had considered kung fu as boring and repetitive, he wouldn’t have spent some time daily for twenty odd years practicing it, would he?
Besides, he was playing Parallel World mainly to improve his kung fu skills.
The reason for this was actually what Sword Demon had called as peak control.
Parallel World had so many monsters for Gu Fei to engage in a fight. More importantly, this was the first time he was actually able to slash or strike others without restraint after so many years of practicing kung fu.
When Gu Fei sparred with others every day in reality, he was often told to hold back. Every strike and move kung fu practitioners executed could not be fully unleashed. Although Gu Fei understood the reasoning behind this, he still could not help but feel frustrated. The real life was unlike the days of savagery and bloodlust in Jianghu described in wuxia novels, which might have been able to fill the emptiness in Gu Fei. But now, he had this online game to fill the void within him. The opponents might be unable to meet him strike for strike perfectly, but at least he no longer needed to hold back when using kung fu.
Gu Fei stretched and limbered up once he arrived in the map. He unsheathed his blade and dove straight toward the monsters.
Nice, it really was much easier to grind now!
Gu Fei knew Eddie’s Emblem, which gave him 30 extra stat points, had allowed him to experience this qualitative leap in power. The monsters around him were eliminated at a faster pace than before. He felt that the current grinding spot would no longer meet his required level of difficulty, so he decided to probe higher level maps instead.
At this very moment, there was a pair of eyes not too far away intently watching Gu Fei’s every move.
Fleeting Smile. He followed Gu Fei after he had left with the intention to thoroughly understand the full extent of Gu Fei’s capabilities.
That speed! He put all his points to Agility… Fleeting Smile pondered in his heart. He had a better understanding of the game compared to online experts like Sword Demon due to his status as one of the higher ranked game planner. Whereas Sword Demon could tell Gu Fei had added points to Agility, Fleeting Smile was even aware of how many points he had added within a 5-point discrepancy.
There’s Strength too… But I think that’s probably the effect of Eddie’s Emblem.
Attack power… Fleeting Smile carefully calculated the equipment Gu Fei was wearing, the inherent attack power of his character, plus the monster’s defense and health total, and he inhaled sharply, “Every attack achieves the maximum damage possible… This – This is far too unnatural! We don’t even dare to design a NPC that could do this sort of consistent damage output! This guy…” Fleeting Smile’s face twitched a little as he realized the reality of the situation.
In Gu Fei’s case, he was basically a person who already possessed a full set of skills with his kung fu. In all honesty, his kung fu was already considered to be similar to the skills found in-game. He had already started out with a fairly high skill proficiency rating, yet there was no telling what the limit to it was. To make matters worse, due to the design of the game, his skill would only become even more deadly as he leveled up and replaced his equipment for even more powerful ones.
At this rate, shouldn’t we restrict him? This was the thought Fleeting Smile had when he ended his sneaky observation and made his way back to the city’s safe zone and logged out. As for Gu Fei, he had only casually flicked his eyes toward Fleeting Smile’s departing figure as he resumed his grinding.