Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
“Greetings! What? I can’t use Japanese-style emoticons in this game?” An ugly female Goblin with large eyes and a tall nose bridge spoke hoarsely.
“Of course not. This game is a Virtual Reality that relies on the nervous system’s sensor inputs instead of the traditional mouse and keyboard inputs. Look at my tongue. Lulululu. See how agile my tongue is? Are other games able to achieve this effect?” a male Goblin standing next to the female Goblin said as he wiggled his tongue.
“What should we do now? Is there a Beginner’s Tutorial in this game?” another Goblin asked.
“Yes, are there missions for us to complete? Are we free to roam around?”
“Is he the Dungeon Lord? Devil Lord Sherlock? Wow, the NPC modeling is awesome!”
“Are we able to select Devil Lord as our profession?”
“Currently, it is Beta Testing, so there’s only Goblin as a profession. The official website said that the official launch will have many more professions for selection!”
“Will there be an opening animation?”
The Dungeon Core Main Hall had become the hundred gamers’ chatting hall. In the chatting process, they would give themselves various weird or decent names, which would appear in prominent green text above their heads. Some gamers engaged in simple chatting, while most of them wandered around the Dungeon, touching and exploring everything. Sherlock had shut off all exit points. The Dungeon was not very big. Even if they wandered around, there were no places to go.
“Quiet! The otherworld’s servants! I’m your noble Devil Lord Sherlock. From today onwards, you’ll become the Dungeon Eternal Kingdom’s citizens. Your mission is to make Eternal Kingdom the greatest Dungeon in the history of the Underworld!”
After his speech, he ordered Bru to allocate their prepared missions to the gamers.
The communication between the Dungeon Lord and the servants was done via the Dungeon Core. Sherlock could remotely assign missions to his servants using the Dungeon Core. According to Bru, a direct order to the servants was not very effective. Instead, using missions with rewards was a better way to direct them. The rewards consisted mainly of bronze, silver or gold coins.
Once Bru transmitted the missions, a mission panel appeared before the gamers and prompted them on mission acceptance.
“Mine a hundred Diamond Seam? My beginner’s tutorial mission is to mine ore!”
“I have the same mission! The reward is ten bronze coins!”
“Where is the Diamond Seam?”
“I’m supposed to carry the hundred Diamond Seam to the Blacksmith Shop. Why am I carrying the stones? I want to mine ore!”
The Goblins with ore mining missions were given the twenty pickaxes, while most of the Goblins were given tasks of carrying the ores. The ores would be smelted into usable metals and made into pickaxes, metal tools, shields, armor and weapons!
How could a Dungeon be without armaments?
Since the Eternal Kingdom Dungeon had been abandoned and undeveloped for many years, the surrounding areas were filled with dangerous and unknown underworld creatures. Even Sherlock found them hard to deal with, especially the Magical Beasts.
The number of Magical Beasts was small, but they were much stronger than normal wild beasts. Some examples of Magical beasts were Crypt Spiders, Killer Vines and Dire Wolves. During the expansion of the Dungeon, if these Magical beasts intruded into the Dungeon via excavated tunnels or the entrances of the Dungeon, it would be problematic for Sherlock. Hence, his servants needed to be armed so that they could repulse unwanted visitors.
These Magical Beasts could also be food for the Goblins. Sherlock could not possibly go to the Bazaar to buy food for the Goblins every time. He didn’t want to use the expensive Teleport Scroll.
The behavior and language of Goblins from the otherworld were very strange. They would give themselves names and check their ugly bodies and appearances frequently. They also had strong curiosity and abnormal social behaviors. They were bold; quite a number of Goblins came to greet him, kneel down, bow and even tell him jokes proactively!
A lowly Goblin encountering a high status Devil would normally feel fear. But the otherworld’s Goblins were not fearful of Sherlock. They seemed unafraid of death!
Sherlock witnessed a Goblin putting his hand into the lit furnace and promptly being tossed out of the Blacksmith Shop by Simba. This incident proved that these Goblins were not afraid of death.
Sherlock was indifferent to their weird behaviors as these Goblins worked efficiently and had strong power!
Even if they were not paid a monthly salary and not given any food, they would mine or carry the ores enthusiastically after being assigned their tasks. There were no signs of slacking.
After completing their missions, they would find Sherlock for rewards which were the bronze coins. They counted each coin carefully and put them safely into their pockets as though they were great treasures.
Those Goblins who completed their mining missions returned the pickaxes to Sherlock. Other Goblins who received mining missions would then obtain pickaxes from Sherlock before bolting off to mine ores.
Sherlock had visited other Dungeons and had seen other Goblins, but they had not had the efficiency and enthusiasm of the otherworld’s Goblins. Even when their salary was paid on time and they were given delicious meals, they would still slack off on their jobs. Hence, a whip-wielding Orc had to be employed as a supervisor.
If neither salary nor food was given, the Goblins would run off.
Though the otherworld’s Goblins were weird and fond of metal coins, Sherlock was quite pleased with their work efficiency and enthusiasm. He could save on the Magic Stones and even food since the Goblins would pay using their money. Hence, he was able to accept their minor flaws.
“My respectable Lord Sherlock, since the start of our Beta Testing, I have felt that we need to refine our game content and information on the official website! For example, the game map, monster bestiary and newly opened areas should all be updated,” Bru suggested to Sherlock as he was supervising the Goblins at work.
Sherlock did not fully understand the game map, monster bestiary and newly opened areas. If they were explained individually, Sherlock might have been able to understand. Now that they were compounded, what was the meaning?
Bru was aware of Sherlock’s confusion and explained, “As you can see, the Goblins are very different. Take it as the Goblins seeing this world as their playground. Mining and carrying ores are hard labor to this world’s Goblins, but to the otherworld’s Goblins, they are a form of entertainment. They have just started a new life in the world, so their enthusiasm and high efficiency will continue in the future. They don’t require salary or food. They need more game features!”
“We need to set up more places as entertainment venues for these Goblins? Like other Dungeons that built entertainment outlets for them to play with mud, wrestle and watch shows?”
Sherlock thought for a while and felt it was necessary. He knew that other Dungeon Lords would create entertainment outlets to keep their Goblins happy. Sherlock was in a bind as he lacked Magic Stones and was unable to hire performance troupe and wrestlers. He could let them play with mud though.
“You get the gist of it. But these gamers don’t really like playing with mud, watching wrestling or performances. They prefer a more peaceful entertainment—adventure!” Bru explained what these gamers really liked.
These gamers did not like to stay in the Dungeon. Instead, they loved to explore the unknown world and fight cruel battles with wild beasts. The more bloody and cruel the fight, the happier they would feel. Even death would not stop them from finding their excitement. They especially like exploring new areas. If they met with powerful opponents, they would form groups of tens to hundreds and fight as a group, even at the expense of their lives. Their only goal was to kill their powerful opponent. After victory, they expected to be rewarded with gold coins, especially equipment.
This was not difficult to achieve as the bones and skins of the Underworld’s wild beasts could be made into equipment. The more powerful the wild beasts, the better the equipment. In the case of the Magical Beasts, magical equipment could be made and sold at high prices at the Bazaar.
To Sherlock, this equipment was trash. A respectable Devil depended on his personal power, and magical items were merely tools of the trade. Armor and weapons were redundant to a Devil.
After Bru’s explanation, Sherlock understood that he had to open up a new area with a constant supply of monsters, loot and treasures. If he could create a Maze or a BOSS level wild beast, that would be even better. Then, the gamers could adventure in that area as entertainment.
Sherlock had to prepare a map, monster bestiary and sufficient loot. Though it was troublesome, it was not difficult. Sherlock also had the intention to explore the surrounding areas. The underworld monsters could be a resource for development. Sooner or later, he had to let his servants kill those monsters and retrieve their carcasses. He was pleased that he could save his Magic Stones and provide an entertainment outlet for the Goblins at the same time.
As long as he could save on the Magic Stones, it was worthwhile!
Sherlock accepted Bru’s suggestion and let Bru take over the mission rewards allocation. Then, he explored the Dungeon and chose a suitable entertainment outlet—Spider Cave!
The Underworld Spiders were a good supply of monsters as they multiplied fast and had large numbers. They infested almost the entire Underworld. A Spider Queen could lay eggs for tens to hundreds of spiders and could reproduce in the blink of an eye. Moreover, the spiders liked to dig, and their lair was like a maze that even Sherlock refused to venture into.
Within the lair were other Underworld creatures such Killer Vines, Underworld Worms and Dim-witted Houndhead Men.
These creatures were not powerful, but they provided enough challenge for the gamers.
Sherlock finished selecting the new area for the gamers. As he was about to return to the Dungeon, he heard Bru say, “Lord Sherlock, a gamer has died.”