Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
“The registration for Group Stages is open. The club has already chosen the rest of the players and rushed us back to practice our tactics. Old Hao, this is the list of the other three members and two substitutes.”
There were three people in the chat room—Hao Tian, Sleepy Winter, and Twinkle Fried Rice. They were all pro players of the Long Sky Club.
The four biggest names of China Esports—Temple of God, Long Sky, Dynasty, and Fried Eggplants with Fish. The players would always be reminded of these clubs’ achievements when they saw those names.
The big names all had their pillars, like Li Ge of Temple of God and ‘Three Chariots’ of Fried Eggplants With Fish. Hao Tian and Sleepy Winter were both senior members of Long Sky; they were known as ‘Long Sky Twin Stars’. A few young players with potential had appeared in the youth camp in recent years, in which Twinkle Fried Rice was the most favored genius player that might become the successor.
Hao Tian, Sleepy Winter, and Twinkle Fried Rice were the core players of the Long Sky team. The competition requirement this time was eight players, including substitutes, where Hao Tian was the leader without a doubt. Sleepy Winter and Twinkle Fried Rice were definitely members. The other five had been chosen in the internal competition. The winners formed Core Team One with the three core players. The second-tier players formed Team Two—that was how large clubs worked.
Hao Tian went through the list and said, “These players are all seniors and familiar faces; they will be able to find their competition mode with just a bit of practice. The contestants are fine, no need for changes.”
He was a god player who had contributed to the club for years, so his words sometimes had more authority than even the coach and the manager.
Sleepy Winter nodded and said, “The first season is very important. Let’s win it. I have looked at the competition details. There’re five stages, so it will last quite a long time. We have enough time to prepare and continue leveling up. Now is the time where the leading players are reaching almost LV 50. When the Division Finals arrive, the rest of the teams should almost be all at max level.
“The qualifiers are just the first stage. As it accepts registration from all players, the fight will be the most intense. There will be thousands of teams in one division fighting for only thirty-eight places—imagine how intense the competition will be. Because of the number of participants in the Qualifiers, it will be in the form of single match elimination. If we are unlucky and lose to a strong opponent, we will be out of the rest of the competition straight away. We have to be careful from the start.
“All of the enemies can be roughly divided into four types—normal noob players just joining for fun, high skilled normal players, strong players from clubs, and the teams from the biggest names. Our biggest opponent will be the other three biggest clubs. I estimate that three quarters of the top forty teams entering the regulars will be from clubs.”
“The group battle is ever changing, don’t underestimate any team,” Hao Tian said in a low voice.
“Old Hao, did you register for the Singles?” Sleepy Winter asked.
“I shall not go then.” Sleepy Winter shrugged his shoulders. He was very clear of Hao Tian’s skills. There was a very high chance he would get a place in the Singles and earn bonus points for the team in the Regulars. Most clubs sent their strongest player to the Singles.
As another member of the Long Sky Twin Stars, since Hao Tian had joined the Singles, he would focus on the team—division of labor.
At the same time, Frenzied Sword also registered for Singles. Different from a big name like Long Sky, the Jiang City Club that he was in was a small team. All the members in the club were just enough for the number of team members required. All of them were tier two players, and only Frenzied Sword had made a name for himself.
However, he was not the leader. The leader was ‘Lone Crane’, a signature player cultivated by Jiang City itself. Yet, he did not have any achievements.
Jiang City was a dying team. When they saw the potential in Frenzied Sword and signed him as a strong help, the team only became a little more alive after he joined.
However, Lone Crane did not like Frenzied Sword; he felt that Frenzied Sword threatened his position. The management regulations in the small clubs was not as developed as the big names, so it was common to put seniority first when determining positions. Before making any result, pro players were all arrogant, thinking everyone else was just trash. Frenzied Sword was lucky enough to meet this situation and was often excluded by the team.
His Singles registration was obstructed by Lone Crane many times. Lone Crane’s reason was “The team needs to retain its power; you are our ace. If you expose too much in the Singles, the others will develop tactics against us.”
The registration only passed after being approved by the superiors.
Frenzied Sword did not favor these fools. It was a crazy dream to want to achieve anything with such a team. He had put all his hopes into the Singles. As long as he made a name for himself in the Singles, his position would be stable.
My win ratio against God Hao Tian is now four to six. He’s a top god player; since I can win 40% of the time, there should be a high chance of entering the top 64 in the Singles.
Frenzied Sword was confident in himself. He had received tons of EXP from Han Xiao’s missions. His level was ahead of most other players, and his ability levels were high too. Plus, all his equipment was limited edition from Black Phantom’s shop. Mechanical Pugilist depended a lot in equipment. Most of his equipment was blue grade, his weapon was even a purple, and its machinery type also exceeded normal player’s knowledge. It was luxurious.
The so-called limited editions were actually tailor-made machinery that Han Xiao had built for him. Han Xiao was cultivating the four of them, so he had to look after them. In fact, Frenzied Sword, Maple Moon, Hao Tian, and Bun-Hit-Dog were regarded as his apprentices.
Frenzied Sword knew very well that the reason he was so strong was all because of Black Phantom’s ‘Hidden Storyline’. Every time he thought of it, he would feel extremely glad that he had met Han Xiao during the closed beta.
I have to get a good place! Frenzied Sword encouraged himself.
The registration for the Qualifiers went on intensively. Various clubs made frequent movements, news articles appeared in the forums every single day, and players discussed the developments actively. It was boisterous. This was a festival; the players all looked forward to their idols’ performance in the pro scene, anticipating the battle of the highest skill level.
The players could already travel between the continents. Countless players gathered in Sanctuary Three. Sanctuary Three was the host venue for Singles. Other than the registered players, many players came to watch it live. The number of players in the city increased non-stop.
The number of participants for the Singles was the highest as most players knew that they had no chances against the professional clubs’ teams, and it was not easy to form a team. In comparison, Singles was much easier. Any one person could register. As recorded officially, every division had more than 100,000 players registered for the Singles. One could see how intense the Qualifiers would be.
The participating players were mostly older players that had joined the game in the earlier times. The new players afterward were only at level 20 or so; them joining would only be free points for the others. Some people complained that the league started too early, but their voices were buried in the sea of people very soon after.
Eight months had passed in-game since the public launch. According to the competition schedule, the Divisions would last for about half a year, and the Internationals would only start after about a year of preparation and rest. This long break was mainly to give the qualifying teams more time to improve their cooperation, which showed how important the Internationals were. Also, it was a form of hunger marketing to improve the influence of the competition.
The competition would last about two years of in-game time. The duration of the entire Version 1.0 was three and a half years. The players that could not make it for the Qualifiers could only be considered unlucky—time waits for no man.
Maple Moon did not register for the Qualifiers. She was a casual player, so she hardly paid attention to competitions and was completely ignorant of the competition mode. Thus, she decided to be a spectator peacefully. Of course, Han Xiao would not force her to join the competition. Furthermore, a Mechanic that focused on building abilities like Maple Moon had very ordinary strength in Version 1.0. Not everyone had the skills of the Great Mechanic Han.
Bun-Hit-Dog, however, contacted his streamer friends and formed a streamer team to join the competition excitedly. With Han Xiao’s experience and prediction, this streamer team would definitely just be free points. If they could join the Regulars, he would swallow ten energy crystals on the spot.
So, only three people under me will be joining the competition, Hao Tian, Frenzied Sword, and Bun-Hit-Dog… The last one can be ignored.
Han Xiao stood before the window, looked down on the crowded square and thought, Hope the two of them can get good results.
The registration stage was the brewing period of the competition; it was also the best period for him to earn a huge profit. 100,000 Singles contestants were willing to spend money and EXP for just a slight improvement.
A pleased smile appeared on Han Xiao’s face.
After heading toward to the galaxy, I won’t be able to interact with a large number of players in a short time. The EXP I earn now will all be taken into the galaxy—the more, the better.