Chapter 5: Quests and Wandering Around
Gnn… It would have been nice if they had made the herb gathering quest easier. This is a realistic part I wish they made less realistic. Even if I refer to the Quest Log, it only says,
[Rumin Herbs are single-stalk plants with 3 jagged leaves growing off it.]
I should have asked the NPC if she had a picture or sample that I could see first …
I thought the plants would highlight if I looked at them so I would know which ones to pick. Technically they do, but it’s not just the plants I have to pick for the quest. All the plants that are possible to be gathered highlight on sight.
The plants aren’t named, just labeled Unknown Herb. I actually have to carefully look and try to determine the differences.
I bet I need some sort of Talent to be able to see their names …
Well, it won’t hurt to bring back souvenirs for Chie and Jo, so I don’t worry about what things are and pluck some of everything. I need to level [Scavenge] anyway.
Annoyingly, the area to find the woodcutter to hand over the lunchbox is also vague.
Looking at the map, I can see where the Honey Forest is, and I can see where the edge of the forest meets the other surrounding regions, but even so,
[The woodcutter is working on the edge of Honey Forest.]
is too vague, isn’t it?!
I was initially alternating between <Enhanced Seeing> and <Enhanced Hearing> to level [Sharp Senses], but now I’m using them to try to find the woodcutter.
The CDs for both skills are 5 minutes after the skill ends, but since each of them lasts for 10 minutes, so I can continuously alternate between them.
I will pass on <Enhanced Smelling> this time.
Let’s see… opening my Item Bag, it looks like … I’ve been devastating the Low Valley’s wildlife.
The contents of my Item Bag are: 42 Rabbit Furs, 12 Unknown Herbs (Type 1), 10 Unknown Herbs (Type 2), 22 Unknown Herbs (Type 3), 5 Unknown Flowers (Type 2), 12 Wolf Fangs, 3 Birds Eggs, 22 Chickenette Feathers, plus the lunchbox.
I still have 13 slots open.
The Item Bag in this game is the type where you have 20 slots to begin with, and then you can add different sized Bag Additions, up to 5 Bag Additions, to increase the number of slots you have.
Though I don’t know where you get those Bag Additions.
By the way, I think the herbs I need for my quest are Unknown Herbs (Type 3). I only needed 10 so I technically don’t need to gather anymore, but I do want to level [Scavenge] quickly to get better animal mob drops.
I catch the faintest sound of an axe being swung into a tree in the distance.
I hope that’s the woodcutter.
Looking at my overworld map, if the woodcutter is in the direction I hear the axe … I have gone very out of the way, haven’t I?
“Ooooh, thank you. I was wondering whether I should return to the village to get my lunch today, but you have helped me out a lot.”
“There’s no problem; I wanted to take a look around the forest, so I just happened to be going in the same direction.”
Kind of. Though I ended up going in a huge figure 8 to get here… but we don’t need to talk about that.
The person I’m speaking to is the woodcutter NPC, Freid. We’re talking pleasantly, but somehow…
“By the way, is something the matter?”
“Hm… huh? What do you mean?”
“Sorry if I’m wrong, you just seem kind of nervous.”
Freid scratched his head, and a nervous smile spread across his face.
“It’s not much, but recently the howls of the wolves have been bothering me.”
“Oh … are they showing up more often?”
Although that doesn’t appear to be the case. I only ran into 2 packs of wolves, while I ran into many, many chicken-type wild animals.
Maybe it’s strange that the wolves travel in packs these days…
“No, that’s not it. It’s… no, it’s nothing. Just my imagination, I’m sure, but here I am, letting it affect me like a fool.”
… I smell the next quest in the chain …
“No, tell me about it. Even if it’s a little, telling someone takes the stress off a bit.”
“… Well then … lately there’s been a kind of weird howl late at night… kind of like a wolf’s howl, but it’s not quite like a wolf or a werewolf… it’s …”
Freid made an uncomfortable face.
“Something … otherworldly?”
The woodcutter NPC nodded his head, embarrassed.
“I see… It won’t be much trouble for me to take a look, late at night.”
“Ah… I’m ashamed to push my random worries on a complete stranger…”
“Don’t worry about it, I only asked to satisfy my own curiosity. But while we’re talking about night in this forest, what are the things that differ from it during the day?”
I continue hunting in Honey Forest until the sun goes down.
In this game, the day/night cycles go for 3.5 hours of real-time, so even the ossans who work a normal day job can play during the different times.
That just means there’s definitely different things that come out during the night-cycles~.
Of course there are also some players grumbling about it, but you can’t have more realism without, well, more realism, so they’ll just have to deal with time-relevant quests.
It’s now dusk in the game world, and the bees have stopped swarming me every time I go to pick up the honeycombs stuck on the trees.
Sure, honeycombs aren’t just randomly stuck on the sides of trees like this it real-life, but bees aren’t the size of medium-sized dogs in real-life either.
It’s getting dark, but I can turn on my ambient light, which lets me see a little bit clearer in the dark. According to the tooltip, the ambient light only works in the overworld, though …
The animals in the forest begin to switch over to the night-time crowd, and as the game-time officially switches to night, I cancel <Enhanced Seeing> and activate <Enhanced Hearing>.
Let’s see if I can find the woodcutter’s ghost wolf…
While I’m at it, I finish the quest for the female florist NPC for finding Nightbloom flowers.
Ah, I didn’t have to go back to the village to get it; when talking the Freid the woodcutter, he mentioned the florist was looking for Nightbloom flowers and the grocer was looking for some mushrooms and I acquired 2 quests that way.
So there’s a way to get quests without having to return to the village!
I don’t know how many times I’ve had to go back through the same area just because I didn’t progress all the quest chains at the most optimal timing in past games.
It was right when I began to puzzle over where I should go to find the mushrooms when I heard it.
A strange, trembling wolf-cry out in the middle of the forest.
… It doesn’t sound normal, but it also doesn’t really sound that … scary.
Or like … is it just some sick wolf or something?
Something seems wrong about the situation, but once I get over there I’ll see what’s going on.
“It’s not like anyone’s getting hurt, I’m just having fun!”
… Seriously … what a disappointment.
The culprit of the wolf noises that was haunting the woodcutter … was a bratty little kid howling like a wolf in a strange cavern that echoed funny. He said he was just doing it because he thought it was funny how Freid the Woodcutter was so jumpy.
You little brat…
How did he get here all by himself in a forest full of wolves?
… Well, it’s actually not too far from the village, if you come straight from the village, climbing up the ledges instead of going around and following the path. Since I was meandering through the woods, it felt really far to me.
Anyway, I totally didn’t notice that the ledges were climbable, since there were bushes and shrubbery all along them, disguising the climbable parts as being part of the side of cliffs.
To finish the quest, I have to either get Binny the Village Kid to stop doing this or let the woodcutter know about the culprit.
“I’m not doing anything wrong!”
Even without me saying anything, the little boy stomps his feet and glares at me while saying that over-used phrase.
This kid is brattier than Toru in his worst years, but I’m not an older sister for nothing.
“Hoooh, so since you’re not doing anything wrong, I should go tell the village guards~. Oh, no, I should tell your mom! A brat like you out in the middle of a dangerous forest all alone at night, I’m sure she’d like to know … Ah, of course you told your mom, right? Hmm… well, I have to tell Freid-san too, since he asked me to find out what’s making that noise~!”
“S-since I’m not doing anything wrong, you don’t have to tell anyone anything!”
“Nono, since you’re not doing anything wrong, it doesn’t matter if I tell them, right?”
“N-no, don’t – uwwwwwaaaaa!”
Ah. I made him cry.
By threatening to tell on him, his own sense of guilt had him crying.
Just putting it out there; it wasn’t my habit to pick on Toru until he cried when we were younger!
I waited until Binny quieted down a little, reduced to sniffles and hiccups. The NPCs are way too realistic, na.
“So, why are you being bad?”
“B-because I didn’t tell mommy and snuck out of the house even though daddy told me not to, and I’m b-being mean to Freid-ojisan…”
Not exactly what I was asking, but ok.
“That’s right, but you admitted to it, and if you aren’t bad anymore and go home right now, I won’t tell. You’ve only been lucky that you haven’t run into any wolves, you know? I fought 10 of them on the way over,”
Binny’s face, that was red from crying, now goes just a little pale. … Well, I fought those wolves coming from a different direction than the village, but I didn’t lie.
“That’s right. Even if you’re close to the village, it’s still not 100% safe, so you shouldn’t come out at night without someone else anymore.”
Binny climbs down the ledges back to the village while I watch and make sure he reaches it safely. I have a clear view all the way down the slope, after all, and it would have been disastrous if it turned out this was supposed to be an escort quest and I just turned around and left.
… Thinking about how it’s a quest and how he’ll still be out here doing this kind of kills the moment.
No, well, OriginStory did think about that and put some of these types of quest NPCs on dynamic layers so I won’t see him here anymore, but thinking about how he’s technically still out here at night for other players …
The Quest Log shows the quest is completed, but I’m totally still unsatisfied.
Time for some more night hunting~!
I finally climbed up so high, the long way, so it would be a waste if I didn’t continue to explore this forest. Although, now that I know about climbing the ledges, it would technically be easy to get back here from the village…
This part of Honey Forest has overgrown rock out-croppings, set up to look like dens of animals or mini caves or something.
They’re really small, or else I would have tried to go in them…
All of a sudden, I came out of the trees and into a clearing.
Surrounded by trees, and yet there weren’t any trees or other foliage in the clearing, as soon as I set foot in it, a chill went up my spine.
I quickly looked around the eerily still clearing.
Nn? Was it my imagination?
Probably … not?
I can hear the wind whistling … but there’s no wind, is there?!
Right from behind me I hear a throaty, raspy howl, as if it was let loose right behind my ear. But when I turn suddenly to look
Nothing is there but the trees and moonlight.
“Ok … “
Still looking behind me, I take a step forward while gripping my axe. As I turn my head to face forward again…
Something dark with colorless, glowing eyes is looking me right in the face.
I jump back, and at the same time, the dark thing took its distance as well.
A wolf, no, an enormous wolf head, giving off wispy, smoky dark tendrils, that had glowing blank eyes snarled, let out an eerie howl, then charged forward directly at me.
“Fine then, bring it!”
Watch for the timing, watch for the timing…
When it was an axe-length in front of me, I swung out, then spun out of the way right as it sped by.
But it made a REALLY unnatural turn-?!
It dodged with very eerily unnatural maneuvers, and continued to attack me.
Ok then… This time I’ll take you head on!
Holding my ground, I dig in, grit my teeth, and swing right as it rushes THROUGH me.
Shit! Physical attacks are ineffective!
That being said, I didn’t lose any HP so it’s not doing any damage either…
Just when I thought that, my vision starts shaking, the ambient light dims, and I start to breathe heavily.
What the hell is going on?!
I click my tongue. My vision has clouded and my senses have all dulled, but I know that bastard is out there! Somehow, he’s the one that’s giving me this awful, gut-twisting feeling-!
Swinging my axe towards the darker shadows as they flicker across my vision, I don’t know how many minutes this nauseating sensation lasted, when all of a sudden…
With a really strange yelp I lose my balance, the ground beneath me disappears, and down I go.
A painful jolt knocks me to my senses, and I lay there panting for a moment.
Eh… what the hell just happened?
… I see…
Somehow, I must have slipped and fallen into this ravine here.
Fall damage is … not a lot, but it’s noticeable. My HP is down by 10%. Despite the shallow fall, I wonder if I took a little bit more damage because I didn’t brace myself at all and landed flat on my back.
This might be something to look into later.
I carefully peek up over the side of the ravine.
The ghostly wolf is gone, but look at all that destruction I caused… the marks on the trees are kind of deep, and the brush has been hacked off all over, littering the area. It should reset by in-game morning, but it looks like someone went crazy and just went at it.
Ah, right, that was me.
But what happened?
I scroll through my combat log.
Oh. A Fear bad status.
Iyaaa… that was pretty damn realistic feeling. I was really freaked out. Although … it looks like when I’m under the influence of Fear, it’s not too different from being under the influence of Berserk, huh?
No, I did think to run away to get away from that feeling, but somehow the idea of being chased didn’t feel to good, so …
Well, thinking about it now, physical attacks didn’t work, so I really should have run away …
Oh well. No use worrying about it now.
More importantly …
There’s this cave-looking hole in front of me, down here in the ravine, though…
It’s kind of making a dangerous *gogogo* rumbling sound.
And there’s also kind of a wailing sound mixed in.
All and all, it seems like a really bad idea.
But you know, if there’s a mountain, you should climb it. If there’s a cave…
I only wait- er, hesitate long enough for my HP to recover before I plunge into the cave.
And now I’m coming back out of the cave.
It hasn’t even been 5 minutes.
No good. It’s completely pitch black.
Haaaaa… even though I finally found something really fun, if I can’t see anything, what’s the point in exploring?
Well, there’s some thrill in trying to make it through a cave with no lights, but in a VRMMO, since there’s fall and collision damage, not being able to see even a hand in front of your face can turn things into a survival game.
Of all the places where the player’s ambient light is extinguished…
Not to mention, there’s an eerie whistling wind going through the cave. Within it, faintly, just very faintly, you can hear that ghost wolf’s howl.
Um … yeah. This isn’t going to go well in the dark. I’m going to need something to see where I’m going.
Although floundering around in the dark has its attractions in a haunted house, with that Fear-inducing spectre wolf hanging around, it’s not just a haunted house, it’s more like … uh … a death trap? Erm…
Anyway, it’s going to go from scary to disastrous if I can’t see.
Haa… but it’s already 3 AM in the real world, huh?
…Shit. I could really use a cig right about now.
I guess I’ll head back to the village and log out.
[Bolstered Endurance]Lv4 (+2)
[Sharp Senses]Lv5 (+3)
[Spirit of the Wild Hunt]Lv3 (+1)
[Inheritance of the Forest Guardian]Lv3 (+1)
About the Game Pt2
Binny: He is designed after a certain developer’s bratty kid cousin. Although he is a very dynamic character that all the testers claimed felt very much like dealing with an actual bratty child, he was made to be easily reduced to tears so that the devs didn’t have to come up with as many responses.
How to indicate quest locations is something all developers must strongly consider. On one hand, you don’t want to just have flashing lights to break out of game immersion, while on the other, you don’t want to frustrate your players into never finishing quests.
OriginStory handles this by leaving a lot of this to conversations with the NPC. Asking the NPC to point out a location on the map, or describe the area better, there are lots of ways you can make your search in the world easier.
The NPCs can also describe the objective in more detail, show you a picture of things that you’re looking for, and all sorts of various things that can help you with the quest – if you ask the right questions.
Unfortunately, even with the plot-armor of being the MC, Narumi hasn’t learned how to tap into this extra help just yet. Her impulsiveness has cost her quite a bit of wandering in the valley and forest around the eastern starting village.
However, as she’s realizing, the NPCs know more than just the quests they are directly involved in. Although the typical way to gain most quests is to start from the quest giver, most gathering quests, and some other types of quests, can be done 1 of 3 ways:
Taking the quest from the NPC that needs the work done.
Overhearing it from another NPC.
Having already done the work, taking the quest from the relevant NPC and completing the quest immediately.
Then again, there are also quests where there is no information available until you happen to complete the quest ….
<A/n: Thanks ‘someone’ for your donation!
Because there’s more questing and more things that happen in real-life, I think this might end up to be more like Chinese VRMMO LNs than Japanese VRMMO LNs… just without all the back-stabbing PvP rampages and over-obsession with real-money transactions lol.>