OriginStory the VRMMO: The advent of AxeBear
Chapter 2: The Results are In
Born to a normal family, you trained your body hard everyday in order to safely become independent, and succeeded in being enlisted into the local militia. One day, while your unit was escorting a caravan of merchants back to your city, you were attacked by a dangerous demon. Though you fought bravely, the demon destroyed everything.
Knocked off a cliff, you landed in a forest as the lone survivor. Hovering between life and death, you struggled to survive. It was then that you met the mysterious shaman of the forest, who took you in hand and taught you how to master the forces of nature, and it was then that the wilderness became your home.
[Spirit of the Wild Hunt] Lv1
Effects: +1.5% defense from leather and cloth armor, +1.5% to Dodge, +2% to Perception, +5% to damage with Nature Talents
After looking over my Origin Story, I’m shocked to silence.
However, even though my mouth can’t utter a word, in my mind I’m yelling,
How?! How did I end up with this scout-like Talent?
I shouldn’t have answered random for everything after all! Or was it my Talents? Was it because I took [Sharp Sense]? Or is it [Scavenge]?
I want to redo it. I really want to delete this avatar and redo it all … but right now I’m in the Unique Instance, so I can’t!
I breathe out. I breathe in.
Okay, I’m calm now.
It can’t be helped.
I took character creation too lightly and didn’t plan my character out well, throwing in whatever I liked without thinking too hard about it, and that’s how it ended up like this. In that case, let’s just play through the Unique Instance to test out how the VRMMO syncs and how the interface is, and then I’ll remake my character once I join the overworld.
It would be better that way since I forgot to reduce my breast size. Those dev perverts didn’t need to make the jiggling so realistic. That’s the one thing that’s never skimped on in any game.
If you’re going to go so far, then why don’t you make the guys’ **** **** realistically too?
Haaa… at least the pain isn’t there.
I stand up and look around.
It’s dark here. A forest at night, huh?
An eerie green glow catches my eyes, and … !
Oh, I thought it was a monster, but it was a guy in a witch-doctor’s mask. That was dangerous, I almost attacked him.
He must be the shaman NPC from my Origin Story. Although he has a jungle witch-doctor like mask, he’s clad in pelts and iron bracers like a Norse berserker. In his hand is a staff that was giving off that glow.
“I have come to you this last time, but I do not bring training or instruction. It is time for you to leave and seek out the world you have been separated from for this long time. However, I give you one last trial. No, it is the forest itself that gives it to you. I leave it to you the methods you use to accomplish it, but the forest’s blessing will differ depending on the actions you take.”
Fumu, that means I’m free to finish the quest however I want to, but the second Talent I get from this Unique Quest will depend on how I proceed. This is quite the complicated system. Oh, I shouldn’t keep the NPC waiting too long.
“I understand, Shaman. What trial do you have for me?”
“There is an evil growing in the forest, and it is corrupting the root of our glade. I leave it to you to cleanse the forest of this threat, as your final trial.”
Aaaah, the Talent from my Origin Story is more like a scout’s Talent, and my Unique Instance sounds like something for a druid … Why did I answer “random” for so many things…
“Cleansing the forest of its corruption… Just to be sure, is Shaman-san going to be participating?”
“No. The forest has spoken. This is your own trial.”
“Even though I don’t have any nature magic or purification?”
“Having lived in this forest so long, it is up to you to use your abilities to seek out the corruption and eliminate it.”
So basically, go find out where the problem is all by yourself, and cleanse the forest all by yourself. The hurdle is too high, oi! What the heck, if only I had taken [Wild Sense] or [Healing Magic] or something …
… Wait. Aren’t I getting a little ahead of myself?
Let’s think about this.
Even someone with absolutely no magic Talents like me can get into a Unique Instance like this. The game advertisement says it’s not their game, it’s my game. Instead of meaning that I can do whatever I want, does it mean that the game becomes a game specific for me?
Even if this Unique Instance seems like it’s made to support people who take druid-like Talents, that doesn’t mean I have to play it that way.
No, with so much freedom in front of me, I SHOULDN’T play it that way!
Haaa… I’m disappointed with myself.
Even though I started this game because I wanted something completely different from other games, in the end I just tried to play it like all the others… to think being a gamer was such a handicap in this circumstance.
Ah, sorry, I got lost in my thoughts.
“Understood, Shaman-san. I will do things to the best of my abilities.”
Shaman-san bowed towards me.
“I am sorry I cannot go with you, despite your hesitation. For your sake, I will give you this Blessing… [*********]”
Mumbling some sort of chant, the glow on his staff intensified, and all of a sudden I was engulfed in the same green light. It faded, and Shaman-san nodded.
“It is done. Do you have any other concerns?”
“No. I will see it done.”
With a bow, Shaman-san disappeared in a green flash.
Alright, let’s make preparations!
First of all, the buff he just put on me is:
[Goodwill of the Shaman]
Marks an Individual as a Friend of the Forest. Some hostile animal mobs will no longer attack unless provoked. +5 Defense, +5 Strength, +5 Intelligence. Expires on leaving this Unique Instance.
The items I have are … 10 Beginner Potions, 10 Beginner Mana Potions, Beginner’s Leather Armor – Style: Forest Walker (Inner, Outer, Bottom, and Boots only), and Beginner’s Axe – Style: Forest Walker.
And lastly … the Talents! While just having Talents themselves will give you some abilities, as well as adjusting your individual stats (though the developers leave the exact details of their adjustment vague), Talents also have Skills. As you level or evolve a Talent, not only will the Talent’s benefits increase, you can gain new Skills to use as well.
For my Talents …
[Axe]Lv1: STR↑↑, END↑, DEF↑, DEX↓, WIS↓, INT↓↓
–Increases Accuracy and Damage to attacks made with Axes.
[Bolstered Endurance]Lv1: END↑↑
[Sharp Senses]Lv1: WIS↑↑, DEX↑,DEF↑
–Increases Perception and the detection of hostile mobs.
–Allows you to gather Plant and Wood materials for crafting.
[Spirit of the Wild Hunt]Lv1
— … I don’t want to talk about it.
The Skills I can use right now are…
[Axe]: <Power Slash>, <Raining Blows>
[Sharp Senses]: <Enhanced Seeing>, <Enhanced Smelling>, <Enhanced Hearing>
So [Bolstered Endurance], [Scavenge] and [Spirit of the Wild Hunt] are completely passive Talents for now, huh?
<Power Slash> is a powerful, single, axe-attack, while <Raining Blows> is a series of 5 quick axe-attacks.
While <Enhanced Seeing>, <Enhanced Smelling>, and <Enhanced Hearing> all boost Perception by their respective senses by 30% for 10 minutes, you can only have one of them active at a time.
Alright, I understand what I have to work with now.
Let’s do this.
With this being a beginner’s instance, I could probably find the source of the corruption just by running around in hopes of stumbling over it, but where’s the fun in that? Since I have [Sharp Senses], I should make the most of it.
Enhancing my sight is out of the question. It won’t enhance the ability to see in the dark, and because I’m deep in the forest, the trees are packed tightly together. The ability to see further away is meaningless if there’s a tree blocking the way every few meters.
And I don’t think I can “hear” corruption. Even if I could, I wouldn’t know what it would sound like.
I activate <Enhanced Smelling>.
… There is no response, it’s just a corpse.
I slowly push myself up off of the ground, where I had been rolling around from side to side, clutching my nose.
Aaah … it’s not like it’s a bad smell or something, but somehow the feedback was much stronger than I expected. Suddenly being able to smell everything and anything within a half-a-kilometer was just too much to take in all at once.
I am so glad that no one else was here to see that.
Eeeeto… let’s see… Thanks to the Perception correction, through all the overwhelming scents I can pick up a faint, rotten smell that seems important. The direction is … *sniff sniff*, *sniff sniff*, fumu, it’s this way.
I take off running through the forest, trying to dodge trees. I’m not used to an avatar with this much speed increase, but after bowling through a few slender trees while dodging the big, unmoving ones, I get the hang of it.
It’s actually quite fun. I see why Toru always plays a speed-based character.
The trees thin out as I get closer to the source of the rotten smell, and I can see the pale blue moonlight trickling through them.
I dodge a dark mass that came out from behind me, pulling my axe out as I spin to face it while I skid to a stop.
A gigantic wolf draws near, growling faintly. It sniffs at me before drawing back. Its wariness is at MAX, but it doesn’t look like it will attack. Instead, it seems more worried about the direction the source of the rotten smell is in.
Ah, of course, it’s not attacking because I have Shaman-san’s Blessing. Some hostile animals will no longer be hostile, was it?
“Oi, Wolf-san yo, are you headed to the source of this stink too?”
It flinched when I spoke to it, but the wolf still made no signs of approaching me.
“Want to join me?”
It growled as I jerked my head behind me, and then it slunk off into the trees. The dark murkiness under the trees swallowed his figure up quickly, so I lost sight of him in just a few seconds.
As expected, since I didn’t take [Animal Empathy] or [Beast Tamer].
Ah! Maybe I should have fought him anyway for the ExP!
Though I can still track the wolf by scent, I decide to let him go. I’m going to delete this avatar anyway, so let’s just hurry up and finish this Unique Instance.
Since I think the source of this rotten smell is pretty close, I approach the edge of the tree-line cautiously and peer out.
Before me I saw a lake that you would see as the background of some painting of fairies or elves, all lit with a magical-looking blue glow from the moon. Despite its large size, the lake is mostly shallow in depth, with an island gently sloping out in the middle of it. If you look closer, you can see the natural rock arches and caves in the lake where the bottom of the lake suddenly drops out.
And there’s a giant bear fighting an eldritch horror on the shore near me.
… Yeah, I didn’t need [Wild Sense]; I probably didn’t even need to activate <Enhanced Smelling> to be able to find THIS.
With a yell, I launch myself at the creepy black tentacles that seem to be made of shadows or smoke or something, and attack without using any of my Skills.
I can’t activate those just yet; I need to see how much damage I can do without Skills first and conserve MP.
Although it looks like it’s just made of shadows, I feel a very solid *thud* as the axe connects.
Thank goodness, it’s not immune to melee attacks!
I think I got surprise attack damage too, but I’m not sure. Either way, the mass of darkness seems surprised, and it pulls back, startled, as I enter the fight.
Come on then, let’s – Uwaaa!
Oioioi, the BEAR’s attacking me too?!
Ah, no good. Shaman-san, a stronger Blessing next time, please!
The bear’s claws miss me by a centimeter and dig a gouge deep into the ground.
Dammit, I’ll have to fight the bear first – just when I think that, the tentacles whip back and strike out at me.
Tch. So they won’t give me a chance to finish one or the other off first.
Dodging the bear, dodging this shadow thing, it’s kind of hard to get any good hits on EITHER of them this way.
Oh, knock it OFF!
“… … <Power Slash>, Kuma-bastard!”
Timing it right to when the bear’s claws came rushing in, I unleash <Power Slash> with all my might, blowing it backwards.
This is not something a beginner in VRMMOs can pull off easily, but even with all the minor differences between games, my experiences in playing axe-based avatars before have made it easier to get the timing down to repel an attack. Just the timing, though. Accuracy and damage are completely up to luck this early in the game.
I’m quite proud of my abilities in reflecting melee attacks with my own attacks, and I’m relieved to see I can still manage to do it in this game, but right now I have other priorities.
Turning my back on the bear, I attack the black thing. Since it’s turned out like this, I’ll take out the weakest one first!
1 tentacle, 2 tentacles! I lop them off one by one by one, ets, dodging the black thing’s attacks.
Alright, I’ve cleared a path, and now to go for the kill – Eh?!
Right before I rush in to stab at its core, the bear came barreling back, rushing past me, and savagely bit down on the rest of the black thing’s tentacles.
O-okay then, attack!
With a satisfying feeling, my axe cuts clean through the black thing’s core, and it disintegrated into a million fragments of dark particles, scattering towards the sky.
I remain on guard, though. Because that bear is still there.
But it just stares at me now.
“… Oi, are … we done fighting?”
It just stares, then looks away into the distance, clearly uninterested.
… Ignoring me are you? Well, that’s fine. You helped me completely avoid taking damage in that last attack, so we’re even now.
Drinking down a Potion to recover my HP, I decide to call him Kumatarou instead of Kuma-yarou(bastard).
I’ve never wished I had something like the [Beast Tamer] talent this badly before.
Can you imagine the panic if I went into town followed by a black bear the size of a mini-van?
[Spirit of the Wild Hunt]Lv1 *New
The things Narumi doesn’t know about, Pt1
Origin Stories are made up of several parts (exactly how many remains undisclosed) that can be jig-saw puzzled together to complete the Origin Story.
The most important factor of Origin Stories is the Power you chose for the question, “Where does your power come from?” The algorithm starts there, then continues the calculation of other possible parts relative to that.
The reason for Narumi’s unfortunate agility/stealth-supporting Talent is mainly (though not completely) the fault of the Talent, [Sharp Senses].
Unlike some games, the developers of OS believe that the weapon should not dictate someone’s play-style, and so just choosing the [Axe] Weapon Talent was not enough to guarantee an attack-support Talent. Although Crafting Talents are calculated in, Talents for gathering materials, of which you can only take [Scavenge] and [Salvage] at character creation, are not. And finally, increased HP is too vague and benefits all play styles, so in the end she was given a Talent that would support [Sharp Senses] most, and combat second.
The Unique Instance is derived entirely from the answers to your questions, completely separate to the 1st OS Talent.
There are a set number of Unique Instances you can start in. Narumi only just barely made it into this druid-like Unique Instance. If any one question had been answered differently, it would have completely changed the result; that is how unlucky she was with her randoms. Each Unique Instance has its own variety of exclusive OS Talents (Origin Story Talents) that are granted based on what you do to complete the Unique Instance.
In other words, the 1st OS Talent is one that supports the Talents you have chosen, and the 2nd OS Talent is one that supports your gameplay.
The process to reach the results of the Origin Story are so hidden, and no one’s allowed to make alts (so it’s hard to do character creation research if you also want to stay on top of things in-game), so this information probably won’t be uncovered by the player-base for the first 6 months. … No, well, at least the first 3 months.
Gamers can be obsessive some times.
<A/n: I don’t know what kind of update schedule this one will have …>