Rebirth Chapter 149

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Chapter 149 – A Sentiment Known as Comradery!

Among the many famous Thieves from Nie Yan’s past, Skinny Dog was the most brutal and cunning. With his treacherous methods of mounting sneak attacks, he was known for being as annoying to deal with as a giant wad of gum. As soon as he found a target, he’d latch on and never let go. Willing to chase an opponent to the ends of the earth if it meant he could kill them, it was precisely such tenacity that had allowed him to hunt down a Shadow Dancer in the previous timeline.

As for the Elementalist, he was called Underworld Flame. He couldn’t quite seem to remember, but if he recalled correctly, he was a Great Mage in his past life. Anyhow, since he had a little fame, then his skill couldn’t be too lacking either.

Five balls of fire condensed on the tips of Underworld Flame’s fingers. Just as you would with a toy, he began playing around with them as they spun and danced above his hand.

“Now how should we play with them?” Underworld Flame’s eyes narrowed as he stared at Nie Yan who was less than thirty meters away. The atmosphere suddenly became incredibly tense.

“I heard that Nirvana Flame is an expert. It’d be such a shame if he was killed just like that. I really wanted to have a go at him,” Skinny Dog said with slight regret.

Yu Lan ((Blue Feather)) and her team had already gotten into formation, but they didn’t dare to rashly act lest the enemy penetrate their defensive line. Under an assault from over three hundred players, they would die without leaving so much as their ashes, much less a complete corpse.

This was an unavoidable defeat!

They were outnumbered fifteen to one. Not even God would be able to save them from their imminent demise!

“Nie Yan, what are we going to do?” Tang Yao anxiously asked. He never thought they would come across such a calamity. This was facing almost certain death. Even if they were stronger, how could they possibly break out of an encirclement of this scale?

No matter how amazing the player was, it would still be impossible!

The players in front of them weren’t like the common fodder that could be seen walking everywhere around the city streets and low-level zones. No, they were Victorious Return’s elites!

Since they found a chance to surround Nie Yan and Tang Yao, why would they possibly let them get out of this alive?

Even individually, Yu Lan and her team might not be able to go toe to toe with the players on the other side. As for Nie Yan and Tang Yao, they could probably take on more than ten of them by relying on their skill and level advantage; several dozen—now that would be as hard as scaling the heavens; however, to take on over a hundred each? Unless godly equipment sets were to somehow fall out of the sky and land right in front of them, they wouldn’t stand a chance!

An individual player might be able to outlevel, outskill, or outgear other players, but they would never become invincible.

“There’s far too many of them,” Bai Kaishui (Plain Boiled Water) said as beads of cold sweat dripped from his forehead.

“Heaven Breaker sure thinks highly of us. These guys are all top-ranking members of Victorious Return. Just a hundred would’ve been enough to deal with us, but he actually sent three times that to be safe. I guess our reputation really does precede us,” Nie Yan said in an unperturbed manner.

As Yao Yao stared at Nie Yan, she couldn’t make out the slightest hint of worry in his expression. She couldn’t help but admire that about him. In such an abysmal situation, he was still able to keep a cool head.

Any and all escape paths were entirely blocked off. It seemed Heaven Breaker really wanted them dead!

Nie Yan had never forgotten that Victorious Return was after his head. It was just that he didn’t fear them while in the wilderness. Even if over several hundred of their members were chasing after him, he was still confident that he would be able to make his escape. However, he had been too cocky. Today, this wasn’t a pursuit but rather an encirclement!

Evidently, these Victorious Return members had been lying in ambush for quite a while, waiting for him to take the bait; otherwise, it would have been impossible for them to corner him in such a way!

His expedition to Black Flame Forest was only a small excursion. Just how did this information leak out?

Nie Yan could only think of one possibility.

He had been sold out! But, by who…? Just who could have sold him out? Anyone in this team could be the perpetrator. Tang Yao? Absolutely not! Yao Yao? Based on his understanding of her personality from his past life, that wasn’t likely either. So aside from them, Dusk, Yu Lan, Bai Kaishui, and the rest were all possible suspects!

No one could truly see into the intentions of a person’s heart!

Regardless of his suspicions, the true blame laid in his own carelessness. He had vastly underestimated what Victorious Return was capable of. He never thought they would be able to bribe Yu Lan and her team into setting up an ambush like this.

Based on his impression of them from his past life, they were all decent people. For him to make such an gross error in judgement… With him changing his own destiny in this life, who knows how this could have affected the people around him? If Heaven Breaker had promised them a reward large enough to sway their hearts, it was quite possible that they would agree to setting up this ambush!

Nie Yan coldly swept his gaze over the faces of each member on the team, pausing slightly on Yu Lan herself, before moving on.

All of this was merely suspicion. As of now, he didn’t have any conclusive evidence.

However, even if it was just suspicion, he could no longer trust them. He couldn’t say for sure whether or not someone here wouldn’t suddenly stab him and Tang Yao in the back while they were busy tangling with the members of Victorious Return.

If Yu Lan and her team had truly betrayed him, then he was surrounded by enemies on both sides. In that case, it was useless, no matter how hard he and Tang Yao struggled.

Tang Yao, if we don’t do anything soon, it looks like we’ll be dying here. Prepare to lose your Arcane Fairy. We’re going to make a break for it. If we don’t succeed, then we’re going to die for sure…!」Nie Yan sent a whisper. He was also prepared to use Adjudicator of God and Sacrificial Gambit. It was a shame that he would have to delay the quest he’d planned to do with Tang Yao yet again, but if he didn’t, then there would no longer be a next time…

If today was really going to be the day of his demise, then the least he could do was give them a proper challenge! He would die while bathing in the blood of his enemies! When he had put that bullet through Cao Xu’s head, he had done so with the exact same conviction!

Tang Yao paused for a moment. Were they really going to die here? Then, he turned to look at the chubby fairy that only knew how to idiotically blow endless bubbles while floating over his shoulder. He really couldn’t bear to see it go away. He had long since gotten used to this blue ball following him around and making ‘blub blub’ sounds wherever they went, Even though it couldn’t speak, and was a bit stupid too, it had always been by his side and had never once left.

「Blub blub blub!」The simple-minded little fairy was completely oblivious to its impending fate.

Tang Yao felt a sinking feeling in his chest and the tip of his nose sour. He turned to Nie Yan with a sad look on his face and asked,「Is there no other way…?

No, there isn’t. We don’t have any alternatives. But if your Arcane Fairy dies, we can just find you a new one! Tang Yao! What matters is that we both live to take our revenge another day…!」Nie Yan tightly grasped the grip of his dagger, his expression serious and brooding. Shit, I’ve really fallen head-first today… But it doesn’t matter, in the future, I’ll pay you back ten—no, a hundredfold for this, Heaven Breaker… Just you wait!

Standing by the side, Yu Lan had noticed Nie Yan glancing over her and her teammates, and she was a little taken aback. Why was his expression so cold, as if it could slay demons and gods? It was a stark contrast to his usual gentle demeanor. Even though she hadn’t interacted with him too often, she was still able to roughly determine what kind of person he was. He always wore an amiable smile when with those on his side, and he would only use this sort of icy expression when viewing an enemy. Then, after a moment, it suddenly hit her. He probably suspected that she and her team sold him and Tang Yao out! This notion really wasn’t too far fetched. After all, this group of Victorious Return members didn’t just pop out of thin air; they had obviously been here for some time now. How else could they have known he was coming? If he wasn’t betrayed, then how could he and Tang Yao possibly fall into Victorious Return’s trap? Hence, it was completely within reason for him to suspect them!

Yu Lan pushed down her feeling of being wronged. She wasn’t afraid of death, but she absolutely could not allow herself nor her team to be dishonored! In a single breath, she said in a cold and solemn tone, “Everyone in the Blue Feather Team, listen up. Nirvana Flame and Young Sparrow Hawk got dragged into this mess because of us. If we hadn’t asked them to help with Black Flame Forest, they would’ve never been surrounded by Victorious Return. Today we’ve let down the both of them. As a way to make amends, so long as any one of us remains alive, we will protect them while they attempt to break out of this encirclement!”

No one expected Yu Lan to suddenly speak out these words at a time like this.

Bai Kaishui stared at Yu Lan, and after a moment, he finally understood what was going on. He scanned over the crowd and yelled, “Do we have cowards in our team!?”

The rest yelled back in unison, “No!” Each one of them was brimming with valor.

“Big Bro Bai, Captain Yu Lan, you’ve seen for yourselves. Since when have any of us been afraid of dying? It’s only a level, what’s there to fear?!”

“Our Blue Feather Team might not be the best, but we will never let down our comrades! Today’s affair was caused by us calling Nirvana Flame and Young Sparrow Hawk over. So we will bear the full consequences! Show me some courage everyone! Even if we all have to die, we’ll still make sure that the both of them get out of here alive!” Bai Kaishui shouted. As the main tank of the team, he also held quite a bit of influence over them.

They all shouted in unison, “Yeah! Let’s go all out!”

Hearing Yu Lan and Bai Kaishui’s words, the hand Nie Yan used to grip his dagger slightly trembled. As he looked at these teammates who were all prepared to meet their deaths for him, his frigid heart that had long since lost faith in the good of people began feeling a touch of warmth.

There was a type of feeling that could only be felt by people who fought and died together.

That sentiment was known as Comradery!

It far surpassed level, equipment, and stats, and mattered above all else!

In Battle Crazed Alliance, Kill Love had such honor! Even if he was about to face extermination, he would never abandon his comrades! This was also why Battle Crazed Alliance would never perish, because he had a band of brothers that would pledge their lives for him!

Now, there was also such a group of people by his side! Even if they were going to die, they would still preserve their honor by helping him and Tang Yao escape!

A flash of guilt appeared in his eyes. Perhaps it was wrong of him to suspect Yu Lan and her team. Victorious Return might have found out that he was coming here from somewhere else. When he looked at their determined expressions, he started to feel despicable. After going through two lives, he had forgotten that sense of  honor and unyielding pride.

“Moon Child, I’m sorry for getting you involved with this. I shouldn’t have invited you to come along with us,“ Yao Yao tugged at Moon Child’s robe and said in a remorseful tone. If she hadn’t convinced her to join, then Moon Child wouldn’t have gotten caught up in such a dangerous situation.  

“It’s fine, Yao Yao. We’re sisters who’d go through the nine hells for each other!” Moon Child said with a gentle smile. Like a calm lily swaying in the wind, she was beautiful and pure.

Nie Yan took a deep breath as he began calming his mind. In this state, he would be able to think quickly and clearly. The enemy had many experts on their side. Getting out of their encirclement would be incredibly difficult. It would be best if they could minimize their losses. However, if he couldn’t figure out a plan and Yu Lan’s team were exterminated, then he could only go out with a fight!

Victorious Return’s frontline was slowly approaching, seemingly waiting for an opportune moment.

Skinny Dog and Underworld Flame were coldly staring at Nie Yan and company. They appeared to be whispering to someone.

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65 thoughts on “Rebirth Chapter 149” - NO SPOILERS and NO CURSING

  1. Again, why did Nie Yan not farm the hell out of that other dungeon so that he would have Unknown Teleport scrolls for himself and his buddies just in case of a situation like this?

      1. no it would give me a story to read with an actual intelligent MC for a change. That is what i always hope for but have never found, a MC who bucks the i got myself in trouble by angering someone/stupid decision/plot device trend and can constantly give his enemy the middle finger. the closest i have seen is Overlord but that’s winning based on pure OP and not smarts.

        honestly how good would it be if every time he got cornered by vicious return or someone he just up and disappeared using a different method every time they counter what he has used before, leaving them with nothing for their efforts not even the fight they wanted

        1. Warlock of the Magus World. It’s a VICIOUS MC, who was a scientist in a previous life reincarnated with an A.I. chip (invention of his modern world).
          His new world of alchemy and magic is his playground, where he premeditates and destroys his enemies with little to no trouble (so far), compared to his peers at least.

    1. I think another reason is that going through that dungeon on Specialist is still not *that* easy and takes a fair amount of time. Sure, the frog Lord took 10 hours, but it also awarded enough EXP for Nie Yan to level up twice, Tang Yao to level up thrice, and some nifty Thief items. That newbie dungeon—even on Specialist—would still have likely less interesting drop even on repetition, and the EXP award may also be questionable now that he had completed the quests and is higher level in general.

      In other words, it was likely choice between escape scrolls (assuming an individual can use more than one of these), and what Nie Yan has been doing. Right now the escape scroll might seem much more important, but we know what a great role the equipment and especially the high level played in establishing the guild and other matters, so it’s not an easy choice.

      1. It’s a pretty easy choice. Aside from any kind of neglected insights we may not understand about items like this, the implications of them are a no brainer. I don’t know if you actually played an mmorpg, but aside from the seemingly strange lack of understanding and experience the author appears to have on the subject, it’s more than just what he writes and anyone that has played would know it’s a widespread occurrence for players to farm pretty much anything and everything just out of habit, let alone for logical and well reasoned purposes.

        The fact that the MC is reincarnated and doubly so since he is holding godly items that can drop upon his death, would only suggest he’d be even more fanatical in farming them, not less, and the only real reasons why he couldn’t was if it wasn’t possible to make consecutive runs such as long respawn timers, couldn’t acquire them with money or wouldn’t have enough, and or he couldn’t convince a group to spend that kind of time doing farming runs.

        1. Well, what you describe applies only to certain kinds of MMORPG and only to certain phase of the game’s lifecycle—on some UO shards, and I think in GW2 as well, it did quite matter whether you were among the pioneers when the shard / server opened, while in WoW I never really noticed any real benefit. Another important issue is whether or not the MMORPG in quest offers truly noteworthy unique items; if the best you can get is a unique skin, or mildly stronger item than expected, it’s not exactly worth the effort. However, the key issue here is probably that the decision to focus on farming instead of pioneering ignores would go against the highlighted premises of the story; he needs to establish himself in this game before real-world companies charge in later on.

          If he farms and farms, then he’s going to have a great foundation, but this would inevitably come at the cost of abandoning his pioneering privileges, and ultimately render most of his past-life’s knowledge irrelevant. Sooner or later, other players are going to discover the important items / locations / quests, people with talent are going to develop great skill, and when that times comes he either can compare with their level and equipment, or he cannot.

          I’d spent a lot of time playing MMORPGs when I was younger, which offered me the opportunity to observe how these two approaches (“farmers” vs. “pioneers”) develop over time and how they ultimately end up: On the one hand, the farmers take a bit more time to level, but they end up with INCREDIBLE supply of everything—or at least with so much money that they can afford basically anything that can be purchased—, and some of them are quite willing to invest into the best the money can afford. On the other hand, the pioneers may or may not end up with incredible wealth (they usually do by the virtue of playing longer, but sometime they only have what they actually need), but they also end up with many things that can hardly ever be bought—as no one is willing to sell them—and that cannot be found anymore; some of those things are purely cosmetic, some are fairly useful, and some are truly game-changing (e.g., I used to play a caster on one UO shard, and one day a melee character dropped me with a single hit despite my magical protection—it turned out that he owned a unique weapon with a perk to ignore any and all magical defences, which made all the difference in the world).

          PS: Naturally, this distinction only matters if you start playing the game as it’s released, not if you join years into the lifecycle; after some time, there is no real point in pioneering. However, story is setup in a way that this distinction matters a great deal.

          PPS: Also, the reasons you offer for not getting greater supply of these scrolls could be another factor. Maybe it can only be used once per character, maybe there is a time limit to how often the scroll drops and / or how often one can enter a previously conquered dungeon on the same difficulty, etc etc.

          1. The last portion of your comment seems to be the case, according to this passage from Ch. 7:

            “The Fallen Shaman Camp is classified as a basic instance. It’s divided into five difficulties: Easy, Normal, Hard, Expert, Specialist. The higher the difficulty, the better the equipment that would drop. If a party were to clear this instance, they would have to wait five days until they could enter and clear it again.”

          2. Incidentally, it seems there’s also a level limit to enter certain dungeons:

            “By the time he grew stronger, he had long exceeded the level requirements to enter Treant Forest and thus couldn’t go back to obtain the jewel. Meanwhile, the equipment that had the Featherfall Jewel socketed into them were all expensive beyond reason. So even then, he still couldn’t afford one.”

            Not sure why there’s a level limit though. Considering the dungeons are instanced, it’s not like it would affect lower level players even if they went back to older dungeons.

          3. @casual_browsing: I forgot that part, the time limit and level limitations should be the answer. That said, I maintain that equipment farming without decent exp gain would go against the pioneer-awarding setup of the story.

            As for the level cap, some MMORPG have those on selected low- and mid-level dungeons; sometime it’s to make sure that higher level PK cannot hinder lower level players, and sometime it’s simply to make sure that the treasure chest(s) within these dungeons are not an easy picking for higher level players.

    2. What are you even saying Devious Rogue?!? What is this non-sense about people with brains seeing the obvious implications of such an item and how taking advantage of said item would be a logical step? I personally thought that a “pretty cheap plot device” existing in a novel series was a fantastic idea. It was doubly brilliant to introduce it near the beginning, and triple so to allow pretty much any and everyone the ability to obtain it at beginner levels under fairly minimal requirements. You Sir are speaking gibberish.

      In all seriousness though, things like the scroll shouldn’t pose that much of an issue since at the very worse scenario it can just be written out and in others, limitations can be created to make it less effective, and scenarios can be fabricated in which using it wouldn’t help much. However, I doubt there will be one any time soon, if at all, and I’d bet my bottom dollar there are at least half a dozen more just like it sitting in queue around the corner. So buckle up buttercup. Things are going to get a bit more bumpy.

    3. Didn’t the Unknown Teleport have something like a 20 second induction period, during which time Nie Yan would still be vulnerable and, in fact, if he was hit/damaged it would cancel the teleport?

      So, the scroll’s use is limited. He was banking on using it steathily in the quest he undertook and I don’t think it would be useful in his current predicament.

      1. Normal Return Scrolls have 20 sec cast time.

        “The reason he was willing to run Agmota Muddy Wetlands was mostly for this scroll. The Unknown Transfer Scroll only needed two seconds to channel. Once activated, it would instantly teleport the user to a random location two hundred to a thousand meters away from their original position.”

        Ch. 101

  2. I have been reading the machine translation. Granted, a lot of the words over there are wrong, but the blue ones seem to have been manually translated. Shouldn’t Nie Yan’s guild be called the Minotaur League? Both the name and the guild’s symbol (mentioned only once) provided over there by a manual translation indicate this. It isn’t right to change the guild’s name just because you prefer a different name.

    1. No, it doesn’t mean Minotaur League. Granted the name characters for the name are Cow and People, it’s slang in Chinese for amazing, awesome, badass, kickass, etc… The characters are 牛人部落 which translates to Awesome People Tribe. If you’re curious why I don’t use the terms provided in machine translations, I answered the question previously in the comments on Chapter 142.

      “牛人部落 Are the characters for the guild name. 牛 means cow, but in Chinese, it’s shortened slang for 牛逼 which means awesome, amazing, badass, etc… The 人 means people/person, so that’s why it’s called Awesome People Tribe. I’d go through several dozen translations of the name before ever coming to Expert Tribe. Experts are awesome, sure, but so are martial artists, action movie stars, and so on. The name in Chinese raws is meant to sound tacky and cringe-worthy, even the author notes it in the chapter with the writing. I’d be doing a huge disservice to the series if I translated the guild name as Expert Tribe just because readers who read the series on LNTML are more comfortable with it because some random person decided to put the translation for 牛人 as “expert” in the LNTML dictionary.

      The two most common terms for expert in Chinese are 高手 (Gao Shou) and 專家 (Zhuang Jia) with the former being the most common way to refer to experts in stories.”

      1. So that awful name was intentional? Yikes… There is definitely something lost in translation because there is no way that the choice in Chinese has anywhere near the same connotation in english. I can’t imagine anyone aside from an group of 8 year olds thinking that is by any means a cool name. lol

          1. You shouldve totally called it swagmasters instead of asskickers united. Its right up there with the other suggestions but i cant help laughing a bit everytime i read it

    2. Lol, how dare you slander the patriach? Look at that, patriach’s translation of Nie Yan’s guild name is not for no reason, you better kowtow and admit your fault now, or… you will regret till your intestines turned green

  3. Damn this cliffhanger prolonging filler chapter… Thank you for the translation, though! =P

    Also, no, it isn’t wrong to suspect them of betrayal regardless of what they say or do now, because Heavenly Breaker could have offered enough to cover any potential loss his mole may suffer. And it would be absolutely moronic to not suspect them of at least an unintentional leak of information.

    I’m sure many here still remember that annoying what’s-his-name Thief real-world friend of Yao Yao—the one Nie Yan thoroughly embarrassed during their first meeting, and the one Heavenly Breaker wanted to find when he learnt more about Nie Yan? Even without knowing that Heavenly Breaker decided to reach out to the guy, he would still be my prime suspect; I’m going to be really disappointed—and possibly even rage out—if our MC fails to consider this possibility at all.

    1. CORRECTION: I think it was Yu Lan’s Thief friend, not Yao Yao’s—he only has a crush on Yao Yao. And I couldn’t resist and went to find out the name, and it turns out it was Chen Bo; I was only sure there was “Bo” in there. =P

  4. Wuu Wuu this chapter was kind of lame. As in wow nothing happened uhhh. How disappointing this one was Wuu Wuu. I’m sure someone would be quick to point out of no but x happened sooo important but really what was that an intro to a real chapter? Filler Wuu wuu. The gif you posted made me think this was gonna be The One epic awesome Kung Fu fighting chapter too lol

  5. This might have been the best chapter of the series so far.
    I love those interactions of Nie Yan with others a lot more than those stories about him outwitting AI enemies and getting equipment. Especially since he seemed so vulnerable and heart-broken over the perceived betrayal of Yu Lan and her group. And not like the all powerful, know-it-all he’s been portrayed up till now.

  6. From the start Nie yan should have called for reinforcements from all allies including his own guild. That way even if they died they would have made Victorious return pay the price.

    1. I know, I was expecting him to call for the guild this chapter. The hall is bursting with people, give them some contribution points and destroy these 300 idiots. It only takes a message, and he can then stall for time since the bozos want to make him red named.

    2. Would’nt it be hard to call on guild members, as the guild was just formed and he does’nt know whether there are spies or moles, possibly from Victorius Return, in his back up, would’nt he be attacked from both sides then?

  7. Nie Yan = can always escape 100% because he can be invisible/cloaking but he prefers to fight to save Tang Yao, using + Chapter of Courage +Chapter of Freedom +DUAL WIELDING DAGGER + Level 7 DAGGER + Enhanced Hands + Cloaking = Super Nie Yan = +++ Infamy = Most Wanted

    Tang Yao = Spells using Fairy = Gatling Gun Spells

    Yu Lan Group = Meat Shield/ Suicide Squad

    1. The chapter of courage only gives him 500hp +, 60% damage resistance, and magic resistance for 5 minutes. Not sure if the 6 levels in level gap and eqipment is enough to kill so many when a thief’s attack aint so high, unless he can 1 shot kill them which should depend on the enemies eqipment, right? The book of freedom is a one shot move with 2 day cool down. Thx for the chapter

  8. I don’t understand some things from his(Nie Yan’s) behaviour:
    1. Given his stat values, thief abilities and past life experience, how could he not know that there was an ambush, much less on such a large scale(I mean 300 players, that’s a small battalion),that’s pretty incostistent, I mean there have been several instances(I don’t remeber where)where he detects danger at the most critical times and in more dangerous circumstances, but he couldn’t discover some amateurs(compared to his past life, the current player levels are amateurs basically)concealing themselves,unless…

    2. He already suspected signs of ambush from his previous encounter with those guys in chapter 147 or 8, (i don’t exactly know). Which would give rise to 3 courses of action:
    (I) He knows there is an ambush and prepares to fight with the 2 chapters he acquired, which frankly is idiotic, personally. If he fights he reveals the power of the Chapters and Book of Order and also the fact that he has them: which is nothing different from inviting every player and guild out there to attack him every time he plays. There is also information about Book of Order on the Game Dev’s website, which will prematurely instigate players to go search for other chapters, leaving Nie Yan with even lesser possibility of acquiring other chapters in the future, I mean it’s not like he knows where they are(he admitted to it himself). He’s revealing his cards, before he can even use them.
    If he doesn’ t fight, then he will be ‘farmed’ by those elites, I’m not saying that he can’t win but come on, 300 against one at the same time?
    (II)He knows there is an ambush but has some other exit strategy, which from recent chapters is unlikely.
    (III)He doesn’t know that there is an ambush which is in contradiction to assumption (1), and therefore is illogical.

  9. An addendum to my previous post:

    Why is he so carefree regarding the potential loss of the Book of Order to his enemies, that’s just giving them(Victorius Return) a large piece of meat which fell from the sky(sorry, read too many xianxia novels), and it’s not like they will just leave him alone after acquiring the Chapters from him, does he not know how vengeance and bullying works from his past life? It’s nothing less than painting a big red target on his back and making it bigger, and:
    Even if he gets away from this situation, he won’t have a free gaming life from then on. Victorious Return may not reveal that he has such powerful items on him to other players or guilds, but they will never let him live freely, and retaliation is always devastating.

    I’m sorry for taking such a hard stance on this but: it’s not like his whole future(chaging the course of his past life) and strength depend on the Book of Order, does he not realise this or is he just that dumb? I thought he had prepared for the consequences when he was ambushed helplessly, but he’s going on and on about fighting till death in chapter 148, but he doesn’t seem to be that serious about the consequences, or is he just assuming that those guys will kill him once and be on their merry way?

    As you can see, I was pretty angry when reading the previous chapter,again I apolohize for taking such a hard stance, it’s just that he seemed so smart and mature? And isn’t it a bit late to search for other ways to increase his strength(assuming he loses and drops the Chapters), considering current player levels are changing and the game is getting more active with more dungeons and active players?

  10. A few things I’d like to point out (a little redundant because I posted before):

    1) Regarding the farming of the Unknown Transfer Scrolls:
    a. From Ch. 7: “The Fallen Shaman Camp is classified as a basic instance. It’s divided into five difficulties: Easy, Normal, Hard, Expert, Specialist. The higher the difficulty, the better the equipment that would drop. If a party were to clear this instance, they would have to wait five days until they could enter and clear it again.” I haven’t been keeping track of the days since he’s last cleared the dungeon, although at this point it may well be under 5. Even if he were to farm the dungeon again, he’d only have 1 at most at this point.
    b. From Ch. 120: “By the time he grew stronger, he had long exceeded the level requirements to enter Treant Forest and thus couldn’t go back to obtain the jewel. Meanwhile, the equipment that had the Featherfall Jewel socketed into them were all expensive beyond reason. So even then, he still couldn’t afford one.” It would seem there are max level limits, at least for some dungeons. Whether or not this is significant at this point considering the game’s only been up for a month or so and everyone’s still relatively low-leveled remains a mystery.

    2) Regarding the mole in the party, a few comments suggest Moon Child, but I agree with the other comments implicating Chen Bo. From Ch. 145: “Heaven Breaker fell silent for a short period of time, then said, ‘Withdraw the internal bounty on Nirvana Flame. After that, go find me that player named Chen Bo.'” The fact that Heaven Breaker, Victorious Return’s guild master, went to find the traitorous thief Chen Bo makes him the most likely suspect.

    3) Regarding his current situation with 20 vs. 300:
    a. Many people have already pointed out that he has 2 Chapters on him, giving him a 60% physical shield and 100% magic shield for 5 minutes.
    b. I wonder why no one’s mentioned the fact that he has other life-saving items on him as well, namely the Smoke and Flash Powders he bought in Ch. 143: “Smoke Powder and Intermediate Flash Powder, two relatively useful items, were among them. The former cost 5 gold for a batch while the latter cost 3. Intermediate Flash Powder was nearly identical to Basic Flash Powder except it was effective against monsters Level 30 and below. He bought a batch of each, setting aside the Flash Powder to use in case of emergency.” (He also looked at, but didn’t buy Basic Metal Bomb, but it’s unlikely he’d use that anyway because he’d get hit with the Instant-Death curse). The situation isn’t exactly hopeless since he could just reduce the line of sight with Smoke Powders and have their mages spam AOEs – treat Victorious Return like Scaled Frogs, only slightly more active. In the worst case scenario, he could always escape with a Flash Powder.
    c. Regarding the Flash Powder, he could always just Flash the enemies and slip through them and into the dungeon instance. Granted getting out of the dungeon would be tricky since the enemies could always camp the place.

    1. 4) Regarding Nie Yan’s carelessness this time:
      a. He’s publicly wanted by Victorious Return (System Notice from Ch. 137: “Victorious Return has placed a 50-silver bounty on the head of player Nirvana Flame. The amount will be paid out each time to whoever kills the designated player and forces them to drop a level. To claim the reward, provide sufficient evidence at Victorious Return’s guild headquarters.”). Why isn’t he going around hiding his name since it’s clearly possible to do so in this game? (From Ch. 148: “This group of players seemed a little familiar, but their names were all hidden. His memory wasn’t so great that he could remember every player that had crossed paths with him in his past. If they didn’t possess any particularly notable features, he wouldn’t be able to recall their name.”)
      b. He clearly heard one of the guys call their thief “Skinny Dog.” How did this not ring any bells considering he’s ranked 6th in Victorious Return and even killed a Shadow Dancer without being one himself?
      c. Since Dusk noticed players from Victorious Return in Ch. 148 (“I’ve met a few of the players over there. They’re part of Victorious Return,” Dusk whispered as he stood by Nie Yan’s side.), he couldn’t have given him a little heads up?
      d. From Ch. 148: “Remember, don’t let your subordinates attack first. Just send a couple of people up. We gotta make Nirvana Flame get a red name first. The boss made it clear that he wants that guy to lose all his equipment. Just one piece won’t do!” How exactly do they intend on starting the PK if they aren’t going to attack? Did they think Nie Yan would blindly attack them knowing 299 people were just waiting for him to start before they would start volleying their own attacks?

      It would be interesting if they used human wave tactics here. Call everyone from the guild over with their thousands of players (and yet not one of them going into this particular dungeon, peculiar huh?) before the battle starts. Considering Dusk is also there, Sleepy Fox and Holy Empire may join in on the fun as well – call it alliance-building guild activities 😀

      1. About your point D: There are actually two ways that come to mind:.

        (1) You make a group of people attack, and–hiding among them–one or two people with already almost depleted health who aren’t really attacking (e.g., intentionally missing, targeting ground, etc.). Then, if the person accidentally hits one of these “prepared” individuals, then they immediatelly turn red.

        (2) You send out a group of people where each person is a member of a different party with remaining members still in the encirclement. Now, all of these people harass, but not all of them attack (similar to the previous case), and the moment Nie Yan attacks someone who did not already attack first, the remainder of his party receives the “you have been attacked by Nie Yan, self-defence is allowed” message. This means that a set of people can attack Nie Yan without any reservations, and if Nie Yan successfully kills even one of them, his name turns red, and if he only lets them attack, then he’s likely screwed.

        The approach can also differ from target to target; for instance, casters usually have AoE attacks that are extremely easy to exploit to this end, while rogue / thief characters usually cannot afford to take a lot of hits and have to deal preemptive strikes or they die way too fast. Granted, the latter only works if there is a real harm in dying (there are MMORPG, where you drop everything–except for soul-bound items, which are really difficult to get–upon death no matter the situation), but Nie Yan cannot die either way because he is going to drop the Chapters.

        1. Interesting points, although I do feel there are some inconsistencies.

          1) If the group were to attack Nie Yan first, he would automatically get the self-defense justification against the group, so regardless of whether or not he attacks the “prepared individuals” he still wouldn’t end up with a red name. This, of course, assumes they’re all in the same party. (Ch. 20: “「System: The opposing party led by player Dian Cang (Blue Drop) has taken the initiative to attack you. You are free to retaliate in legitimate self-defense. Time: 30 minutes.」The retaliation period increased to thirty minutes when facing a small party. It would increase even further in team battles or guild wars.”)

          2) This case is slightly trickier, although I still maintain my stance – if Victorious Return doesn’t attack first, why would Nie Yan willingly take the initiative? He could still go into the dungeon and call for reinforcements while they run the dungeon. Incidentally, if they start hurling attacks at the ground and stuff, won’t purposely taking one of the hits trigger the self-defense buff? Even though the enemy in this case is of different parties, couldn’t Nie Yan just go pick off the ones he’s qualified to kill without getting a red name?

          3) If we combine the 2 above scenarios it would be much more interesting. Have a person from a different party attack and while Nie Yan is in the middle of throwing out an attack, have someone with low life from another party jump in to take the hit. The low life’s party members would have the self-defense buff and Nie Yan would have a red name. Still not that likely considering Nie Yan’s control should allow him to easily pick off close-range enemies.

          4) What counts as a guild war? How does the self-defense buff work? Victorious Return has already issued a global hit on Nie Yan. I’d find it rather hard to believe if the system wouldn’t allow for justified self-defense against the whole guild based on this alone.

          1. Before I begin, from what I’ve encountered in MMORPGs, defensive action tends to propagate to all of one’s party, while attacking action usually does not (i.e., if one person attacks you, you can only retaliate against that one person and not the rest of their party, but anyone from your party can help you retaliate).

            Moreover, you’re using “group of people” as a synonym for “party”, while I’m intentionally trying to distinguish the two in this context. A group of people is simply a group of people who may or may not be in a party; party is self-explanatory. Keeping this in mind, the #1 cannot be avoided as easily as you suggest.

            As for the idea that “why would he attack first”: Well, if he doesn’t attack first, then he’s going to die non-red player eventually, because they can continue attacking him with a mixture of real attackers and baits until Nie Yan either dies or turns red. Rogue-ish archetype characters usually cannot take a lot of damage, so the only way to survive is to attack preemptively—it’s not like he knows about their intention to make him go red first, and even if he did, it’s not like he knows in advance who is going to attack him for real and who’s going to fake it.

            I don’t really see any difference between my #2 and the combination idea expressed by your #3. My #2 was already build as an expansion to my #1; I even explicitly connect them at one point.

            As for the Guild War idea, it’s possible, but it depends on many factors: Chief among which is whether the game supports anything resembling a guild war mechanic. In addition, even if the idea of guild war is supported, I’m not sure it would apply in this scenario, because Heavenly Breaker already retracted the bounty in one of the previous chapters, and—even if he hadn’t—it would still be a bounty for Nie Yan, not a formal declaration of war against a guild he had yet to establish at the time.

            PS: I suspect that even CC technique like Smoke / Flash Powder would be considered an attack, so it probably wouldn’t help with the red-name thing; the question is whether spamming those would allow him—and his team—to retreat (into the dungeon, via return scrolls, or simple running away).

          2. Noted. Admittedly, I haven’t played too many MMORPGs so I don’t have input regarding what systems generally allow. It seems, though, that retaliation would be against the party (Ch. 72: “System: A member of the party led by player Eternal Sin has taken the initiative to attack you. You are free to retaliate in legitimate self-defense. Duration: 30 minutes.”) The question becomes: does the retaliation buff spread to Nie Yan’s party?

            Apologies. I only intended “group of people” to refer to party in the first scenario. I was under the impression you listed 2 separate scenarios since you prefaced with 2 ways coming to mind.

          3. No problem, maybe I should have been more explicit about the connection between the two ideas. Anyhow, now that this has been cleared up, we should be on the same page.

            As for your question, I played most of my PvP in Ultima Online, and there was a fair and very reasonable system to handle these situations. When you were in a party and someone attacked you, all members of your party—at the time of the attack, or at the time of any following attack—were able to retaliate alongside you. However, this retaliation would not extend to other members of the attacker’s party; the only exception was when they supported the attacker (e.g., heal, boost, protective spells, etc.), or attacked you as well. There was a drawback to this system, but it only affected Priest PvP. Anyhow, I can only hope that Conviction relies on a similar system since the author obviously considered this aspect of the game.

            Obvious deviation is that if one member of a team attacks, all members of the team become retaliation targets. And another deviation could be that the option to retaliate is not extended to target’s teammates. Who knows which game(s)—if any—inspired Conviction, and which elements have been influenced and how.

            I suppose we could muse about this for ages, but—rather than how the antagonists are planning to go about getting Nie Yan to turn red—the more important issue is how Nie Yan can get out of this predicament (1) without nonsensical plot-armour, (2) without losing the Chapters, (3) without losing a ton of stats because of that stupid bomb, (4) without outright sacrificing the arcane fairy, and (5) without outright abandoning his teammates. Also the author deserves bonus points if he can write a good way out of this predicament (6) without having Nie Yan reveal the Chapters, which would likely have annoying consequences.

            While the #1 and #2 are a must in my opinion, I would really hate it if the author resorted to another stat loss, so #3 is also quite important. That said, I fully expect some if not all of Nie Yan’s teammates to die, and I wouldn’t be surprised is the arcane fairy didn’t make it either. However, even if that is likely to happen, it would make Nie Yan look rather bad in the eyes of the impacted individuals if he outright used them as a meat-shield to save himself, or if he outright sacrificed the arcane fairy.

        2. Actually, the most efficient way I could think of is to just have the AOE casters spread out among the crowd and party each other. Hide them behind the “neutral” people and disperse them through the crowd. If you protect the red name people with “neutrals,” once the neutrals intercept an attack against the red name people, would that make Nie Yan’s group have red names as well?

          The thing with the self-defense buff is, although it allows you to counter the opposite party, there would also need to be a way to identify those the buff is active against. Thus far, I don’t believe we’ve seen anything to indicate that the members of a party were readily visible to an outsider. Is there a marker above their heads or something?

          Also a side note – does Smoke / Flash Powder trigger aggro? If it doesn’t count as an attack, lay one down and run. Proven tactic of ninjas everywhere 😀

    2. Regarding (2):
      Could’nt it be both moon child and Chen Bo, like the latter ‘hired’ moon child to make contact with Nie Yan at the auction house and then plan for the ambush?

      1. Possible, though it would be much more convoluted than I would expect from this story. If anything, I would have expected the other girl who was at the auction house at the time who was hired to talk up some random guy. What makes the theory that Moon Child planned on making contact with Nie Yan at the auction house less likely is the fact that they happened to meet by chance (well, not entirely since they met through Yao Yao, but from Ch. 102 “「Nie Yan! It’s me, Yao Yao. Where are you right now?」She happened to notice Nie Yan was currently in Calore on her friends list, which was why she called him and asked.”)

        That being said, the fact that the author draws attention to Moon Child at the end of the chapter is indeed suspicious. I’m really not sure what to make of it at this point. Chen Bo is most likely the source of their current trouble, although he would still need to have known about them going to the dungeon at this particular time somehow since he had left the team (Ch. 115 :”I ran into Chen Bo again. That guy spat nothing but bullshit and even wanted to duel me! In the end, I one-shotted him with my Flame Explosion. Hmph, he was trying to convince Yu Lan and Yao Yao to kick me out of the team… That guy needs to take a good look in the mirror and see who the real loser is! Not a single person in the team paid any attention to him, and even Plain Boiled Water stood by my side. Eventually, Chen Bo couldn’t take the shame and left the team himself.”) Perhaps he still has some contact with the group. It could well be Moon Child, since it’s already been shown that she has trouble turning people down (Ch. 103: “Moon Child is a good friend of mine, but one of her quirks is that she doesn’t want to offend anyone.”)

        1. That makes sense also; I hadn’t considered Moon Child in my previous analysis because I couldn’t remember which character it is. I can follow if all the names are in “pinyin”, I can follow if all names are in English, but the mixture has created a name mush in my brain.

          If she is so against offending people, then it’s quite possible that basically anyone could have gotten the information out of her regardless of their original intention. She would likely spill the beans the moment someone asked her about the details of her exping plan for upcoming days.

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