Luo Jingang eyed Li Yao in a different way now.
The Grand Desolate Plateau had become less and less peaceful over the past year. Not only were many strong demon beasts scourging the mother lode, even the ordinary pests were appearing more often than before, too.
From he didn't know where, the miners heard of the magical equipment named Demon Beast Detector and demanded that Thunderbolt Hall provide it for them.
Luo Jingang had not been very interested in this daring, new magical equipment. However, the mines had been an unsettling place because of the various demon beast attacks. Since the Demon Beast Detector was not expensive anyway, he decided to purchase a batch, for nothing other than to increase the sense of security for the miners.
As it turned out, the Demon Beast Detector was much more efficient than he thought. Snakes, insects, and rats that were hiding in the darkness were mostly discovered. The bites cases in the mines were reduced by two thirds.
One other time, a miner was bitten by a rare Nine-Colored Cardiac Corrosion Scorpion in a tunnel 1,300 meters below the ground and it would have taken half an hour for the paramedic to arrive.
If it were in the old days, the miner would have died for sure.
However, with the Demon Beast Detector, first aid procedures were immediately presented after the accident.
The miner's workmates did everything according to the instructions. They pierced the earlobe of the miner and squeeze the poisoned blood out, which was enough for him to survive the upcoming half hour for the medical staff to come.
The incident left a deep impression on Luo Jingang.
Besides, he was also a member of the Demon Hunters' Association and a subscriber of 'Predator'. He had read the article about Li Yao and remembered the name clearly.
"Mr. Li Yao, nice to meet you. I am Luo Jingang, leader of Thunderbolt Hall. We've been focusing on the mining industry. Your Demon Beast Detector has been a great help for us."
Luo Jingang smiled. His impression of Li Yao was good.
However, as the leader of his sect, he was not going to purchase the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit just because of a good impression.
After all, he had noticed that this was the first time that the Grand Desolate War Institution had refined a crystal suit. Although the place was lively, most people were only here for fun. Up until now, no order had been placed yet. It appeared that no one was willing to be the first person to taste the crab.
"While we were on our way here, Ah Ling briefed me on the basic specifications of the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit. I saw a few video clips of Mr. Li Yao's amazing performance, too.
"However, Thunderbolt Hall is just a start-up. I'm afraid the younger generation of our sect is not as good as you.
"Although the other MP crystal suit models are a little more expensive, their specifications are much better.
"Take the Flying Flame Battlesuit for example. It has been specially adjusted for high temperatures and scorching flames and is very suitable for us.
"The crystal suits I buy will be put into fierce battles immediately after I'm back. I need to be responsible for the juniors of my sect, as well as the safety of the miners, don't I?"
Li Yao listened carefully until Luo Jingang finished his speech. Then he smiled and replied, "Leader Luo, what you said does make sense. The crystal suit is the king of magical equipment and the main force on a battlefield; countless lives are dependent on it.
"The top priority when picking a crystal suit is not the price but the performance.
"But I wonder whether or not you've thought about this.
"The average price of the MP crystal suit models in the exposition here is around 260 million apiece.
"But will their performance be as good as they are claimed to be with such a low price?
"A seafood fried rice is being sold a hundred bucks per bowl. Guaranteed that it is full of the best lobsters, abalones, shark fins, etc. Beautiful promotional pictures, too.
"Do you think it's possible?
"With such a budget, if I indeed bring out a bowl of seafood fried rice that seems to be made of seafood, there are only two possibilities.
"First, the seafood was made from dead fish and lobsters, or counterfeits that are actually ordinary ingredients.
"Second, although the bowl of seafood fried rice is being sold at a hundred bucks, there will be expensive service and miscellaneous fees that follow.
"All in all, business is always business. It's always about making money.
"I'm told that Leader Luo and Elder Ge used to be Demon Hunters. You must've worn crystal suits of various sorts before.
"So, why don't you recall the price and performance of those models and compare them with the MP models, and see if what you were told is plausible?"
Li Yao's words immediately dazzled Luo Jingang and Ge Feipeng, who looked at each otherin deep thought.
After Li Yao pointed it out, they felt that it was odd, too. The performance of the MP crystal suit models seemed to be too good for their prices.
Li Yao said solemnly, "I'm not implying that these sects are lying. I am trying to say that to achieve such a high performance in such a short refining period with such a low cost, they might've employed a lot of radical technology that has not been tested yet.
"And no one can guarantee that this technology will function normally in a fierce battle.
"The Grand Desolate War Institution is different. Our MP crystal suit project was not started just now but twenty years ago. What we employed in the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit is mature technology that has been well tested. Although its general performance might not seem as charming as that of other MP crystal suit models, we guarantee that what you see here is what it will be like in a real battlefield, if not better.
"Leader Luo, you just mentioned that you are purchasing crystal suits for the juniors in your sect.
"In my opinion, for young Cultivators who lack experience and skills, a solid, reliable crystal suit is much better than a defective, over-exaggerated one, isn't it?"
Luo Jingang and Ge Feipeng nodded their heads approvingly.
Luo Jingang said, "Alright, Mr. Li Yao. Ah Ling has told you our needs and the combat environment we're going to be in. Then, according to you, the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit is enough for our purpose?"
Li Yao answered unhesitatingly, "As a basic MP crystal suit model, the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit is designed for middle-level and low-level Cultivators. Its durability and stability in high-temperature environments have been tested multiple times. We have a lot of experiment videos for your reference.
"Ms. Luo Ling just mentioned that Thunderbolt Hall is exploiting a mother lode of fiery crystals. The temperature in the mines can be well above 300C. The place has been harassed by demon beasts of the fire class, too.
"Therefore, in my opinion, besides the standard components, you should add a set of heat-resistant plate armor which contain twenty frost rune arrays. Such a set of plate armor is not expensive. 10 million each, I believe.
"What's more, the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit has been refined with a modular architecture. By adding different extensions, different tactical purposes can be achieved.
"For example, if you are building up a tactical squad of five people, you can choose a commander extension which significantly enhances the computational ability of the suit, a heavy armor extension which brings up the defense ability exponentially, and a scout extension that contains high-speed power rune arrays. The other two Cultivators of the squad will wear the standard Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit.
"That way, you need only 700 to 800 million to establish a tactical squad of five Refinement Stage Cultivators.
"Two or three such squads should be enough to defend the mines. With nothing to worry about anymore, Leader Luo and other high-level Cultivators in your sect will be able to explore the depths of the underground world and demolish the dens of the demon beasts."
Luo Jingang's eyes were beaming with joy.
With the same money, he could build up one squad according to Red Serpent Sect, but two according to the Grand Desolate War Institution.
Besides, with the modular design, the specifications of the crystal suit for commander, scout, striker, and ordinary members were different from one another, which would be better for teamwork.
It sounded a lot better than buying five of the same Flying Flame Battlesuits!
Luo Jingang continued asking, "Does the price include all the attack magical equipment? Do we need to buy additional magical equipment components? Who will maintain the suits in the future?"
Li Yao replied, "The price has already included the basic attack magical equipment. There are better attack modules and extensions, but they're not mandatory.
"According to your description, the crystal suits that you buy will mostly be used in zigzagged underground mines. I doubt that the powerful long-range attack magical equipment will be of much use.
"Besides, our Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit is most distinguished for its universal compatibility. The magical equipment that you refine by yourself or purchase from elsewhere can easily be integrated into the suit.
"If it's okay with you, I can help you plug in the additional modules, too. I am a registered refiner of the federation and I'm qualified for refining services.
"As for maintenance, we suggest you send them back to the Grand Desolate War Institution for maintenance in the next three years. But, as you know, the Refining Department of the Grand Desolate War Institution has always been the center of grassroots refiners. We value simplicity and directness more than anything else. If you have suitable candidates, you can send them to the Grand Desolate War Institution for a few weeks of training, and you will be good to maintain the crystal suits by yourself. We don't have any strict requirements in that regard."
The more Luo Jingang listened, the more tempted he became. He was going to inquire more about the details, when a chilly voice called out from behind him, "Mr. Li Yao, in light of the terrible accident that happened to your dear crystal suit last year, the crystal reactor of the Mystic Skeleton Battlesuit is not satisfactory enough, isn't it?
"The crystal suits that Leader Luo is buying will be worn in the surroundings where the temperature can be hundreds of degrees. When confronted with a demon beast, they might be heated to more than a thousand degrees.
"Is your crystal reactor good enough for such harsh environments? Your crystal suits will not explode again like they did last year, will they?
"Because if they do, it's going to be a nasty scene in the mines hundreds of meters below the ground!"
Luo Jingang and Ge Feipeng's expressions both changed as they heard the words.
Cold brightness shined in Li Yao's eyes. He raised his head and looked at the newcomer.
There was an emblem on the chest of the man's clothes, which was a hissing serpent condensed by flames whose forked tongue darted out greedily, indicating that the man came from Red Serpent Sect, the top sect in the refinement of fiery magical equipment.