“The game ‘Civilization’ will be an extremely vast virtual world,” Li Yao said. “What you have played is merely the most preliminary offline version, which I’m afraid only takes up one percent of the real game!
“We are planning to enrich the whole world in the next hundred years and realize a real interactive gameplay. By then, the officials and the general public of a civilization will all be real-life players made of flesh and blood. The evolution of civilization will be more real!”
“It will certainly be a boundless world!” Long Yunxin felt that she was quite looking forward to it, but she was somewhat baffled. “The creation of such a world must require astronomical resources, right? Why did you choose to implement the project? There are many hundred-year projects right now that demand tremendous resources, aren’t there?”
“For mainly three reasons.” Li Yao extended his fingers and replied frankly, “Firstly, after I learned the history of the decline of the dozens of Cultivators’ civilizations, I was more or less confused. I studied their decline carefully in the hope of solving the problems of the civilizations, to no avail however hard I tried.
“When I was exhausted and thought calmly, I realized that I was being hilariously stupid. A civilization is bound to come across infinite problems during its development. Not just an amateur of politics such as myself, even Speaker Jiang Hailiu, an admin-type Nascent Soul Stage Cultivator, wouldn’t be able to solve all the problems all by himself!
“People of the Covenant Alliance aren’t wrong about one thing.
“The strength of an individual is limited after all. Against the boundless starry sky, even the Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators are but dust that is slightly larger. They may be ten times or a hundred times larger than the ‘tiny dust’ that is the ordinary people. But so what?
“However insignificant a grain of dust may be, when billions of individuals are gathered together, they will make the most brilliant and glorious building covering the entire world!
“Such a mysterious question as the evolution of a civilization can absolutely never be figured out by a few admin-type Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators!
“But when the wisdom of everybody of the three Sectors, including the ordinary people, is gathered, it is possible that we may find a way out in the dark, boundless universe for ourselves!
“Everybody has their own talents and specialties. Even the least known ordinary people may have weird sparks in their brain that have never occurred to even the Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators! What we are going to do is unleash the thousands of sparks!
“Even though some of the sparks may seem ‘bizarre’, they can prove to be brand-new enlightenments for us later!
“This is the original purpose for which we developed ‘Civilization’ and the DLC ‘Rise of the Imperium’.
“Millions of players will contribute their wisdom through the game, which will be a reference for the New Federation when policies are made, after the data is filtered, analyzed, and stored!
“Through the history of the decline of the predecessor civilizations, we will be able to realize where exactly the problems lie and exterminate the dangers the moment they show up!
“We are using history as a mirror in such a way.”
Long Yunxin was deeply attracted by Li Yao’s extraordinary idea.
The billions of people of an entire world participating in the evolution of civilization and offering their own wisdom and strength?
If the plan worked out, it would truly be a world where everybody was equal!
“What’s the second reason?” Long Yunxin asked subconsciously, eager to know the answer.
“The second reason is sort of about the competition of beliefs between us and the Immortal Cultivators!” Li Yao said. “The Immortal Cultivators despise the power of the ordinary people and consider ninety-nine of the human beings as ‘hominoids’, existences slightly more advanced than monkeys. They forbid the ‘hominoids’ from getting involved in politics or controlling their own fate!
“The Immortal Cultivators’ excuses sound right correct and justifiable. They said that ‘hominoids’ have a low computational ability, are susceptible to addiction, are often swallowed by their own lust and feelings, and are lazy, greedy, and shortsighted…
“Therefore, the development of the civilization must be controlled by the Immortal Cultivators tightly. All the ‘hominoids’ need to do is obey the commands and carry them out dutifully. That way, the interests of both parties will be maximized!”
Long Yunxin recalled her experience in the game. She had to painfully acknowledge that she seemed to have been somewhat bewildered by the Immortal Cultivators.
Although not all ordinary people were like that, quite a large fraction of them were kind of, sort of, maybe unsuitable to control their own fate.
Handing over their fate to themselves was like giving a sharp dagger to a three-year-old, which would be a tragedy for both themselves and others.
“What’s wrong with the excuse?” Long Yunxin’s voice was as feeble as a mumbling mosquito.
“It’s very easy. Nobody is born to have a clear and sharp mind. Nobody is inherently omniscient and omnipotent! Even the easiest things such as walking or holding chopsticks must be learned, mustn’t they? How can you know anything without learning?” Li Yao sneered. “The Immortal Cultivators deprive the ‘hominoids’ of the right to decide their own fate because they are too idiotic for politics. It is almost like cursing some teenagers for being illiterate when you didn’t teach them how to read when they were children!
“For the Cultivators, we believe that ‘practice makes perfect’. All skills are honed slowly when we grow from a rookie into a master—including how to take fate by the throat!
“If ordinary people are too shortsighted, try to broaden their horizons as much as possible! If ordinary people cannot handle complicated political issues, dismantle the issues into the simplest multiple-choice questions and train them from scratch! If ordinary people do not know how to choose between ‘present’ and ‘future’, we will simulate a million possibilities so that everybody will see the consequences with their own eyes!
“In short, if the people are not wise enough, we will try to enlighten them. We will not allow the minority to seize power forever with the excuse that the people are unwise!
“We will learn bit by bit, and we will be more rational, keen, determined, and enlightened than the last day every day. Eventually, everybody, including both the ordinary people and the Cultivators, will be built into warriors who can fight for themselves, for society, and for whole civilization!
“Therefore, the game ‘Civilization’ is also some sort of ‘tutorial’. I believe that anybody can learn something from it.”
Long Yunxin nodded quickly. She could not agree more.
“Thirdly—” Without even catching his breath, Li Yao continued quickly. “The game ‘Civilization’ is of unique significance for the Cultivators, too, because it gives them an opportunity to play the roles of the ordinary people and experience the happiness and sorrow of the mortal world.
“Miss Long, you must’ve played some roles that were ordinary people just now, right? Did you feel anything different?”
Long Yunxin nodded slowly. Her lips moved, but she came up with nothing although there was so much that she wanted to say.
“Cultivators, with our own capabilities, computational abilities, and connections, are more likely to succeed than ordinary people. It is easier for us to climb to a higher position enshrouded in colorful halos.
“As we grow stronger and stronger, and the halos around us get more and more brilliant, many Cultivators tend to be lost. They forget where they come from and where they are going to in the end!
“Through the episodes of ordinary life in the game, I believe that we will be able to understand the ordinary people’s feelings and needs better. We can better figure out the relationship between the Cultivators and the ordinary people. We will be clearer and more determined about our civilization.
“This is a kind of training, too. Such a training method is not our own invention but dates back to the ancient Cultivators.”
“The ancient Cultivators?” Long Yunxin was slightly dazed.
“Precisely!” Li Yao blinked and said, “The high-level Cultivators in ancient times often performed a training named ‘mortalization’. They would conceal their techniques and live in the world of the mortals as ordinary people for many years, experiencing everything that an ordinary person would. They would even marry and have children. After witnessing all the facets of a real life, they would be able to see the entrance to a higher level!
“Maybe, after the high-level Cultivators lived in seclusion as hermits for too long, they had forgotten the basic feelings of a human being and the significance of their life. By way of ‘mortalization’, they could find a reason to live again!
“The mortalization of the ancient Cultivators is extremely difficult. They had to live in the world of ordinary people for ten to twenty years for real! But it’s much easier for us modern Cultivators to experience ‘mortalization’. Through the game ‘Civilization’, we can experience thousands of different lives at any time!
“Perhaps, one day, we can pass a new law dictating that every Cultivator of the federation must receive ‘further education’ every year, in which certain hours of ‘mortalization’ training will be involved.
“In such a way, the distance between the Cultivators and the ordinary people will be shortened, and we will be able to compete with the so-called ‘true path of immortality’!”
Hearing that, Long Yunxin took a deep breath. She looked at Li Yao in disbelief and admiration, before she said, fully convinced, “I didn’t know that you had such a profound understanding about politics and sociology other than your expertise in the crystal suits and the Colossi!”
Li Yao suddenly blushed. He hurried to shake his hands and said, “I’m afraid that there’s a misunderstanding, Miss Long. The game ‘Civilization’ is not really related to me. I merely proposed some unimportant ideas during the beginning phase.
“Even the words I said just now are not mine. They are the essence of countless sociologists and politicians and will be stated on the introduction page of ‘Civilization’. I simply brought them up in advance and mimicked the sages’ theories!
“The design and development team of the game ‘Civilization’ is made of members from everywhere, including the Glorious Sunlight Group, the Grand Desolate War Institution, and some of the experienced technicians of the former ‘Grand Illusionary Group’ in the Flying Star Sector. Some demon emperors of the Blood Demon Sector who are adept at biochemical neuron technology were involved, too!
“The federation government also provided tremendous support for the project!
“Right, the senior right next to me contributed a lot to the birth of ‘Civilization’. He is almost a father of ‘Civilization’.
“Here. Let me introduce him to you. This is the dean of the Sociology Department of the Grand Desolate War Institution, Professor Su Changfa!”