A thousand players were instantly killed. However, even more surged forward to fill their spots.
They planned to slowly whittle away at Phantom Princess Ina's health. Even a more powerful boss would eventually fall to this many people. Time ticked away.
No one could have ever imagined Phantom Princess Ina would be this powerful. The casualties quickly accumulated.
Half an hour later, Phantom Princess Ina still had a third of her health remaining. It was falling slowly. Only then did players understand the might of a Level 100 Variant Lord. She was completely different from other bosses, who would die within five or six minutes after being swarmed by several thousand players.
Splendid Temple suffered heavy losses. Their casualties already exceeded 200.
"Tanks, interrupt her casts! Mages, lower your damage output! You're building up too much aggro!" Splendid Star ordered. At this rate, even if they snagged a good piece of equipment, it wouldn't be worth it.
Apart from those of Splendid Temple, Phantom Princess Ina had killed roughly 10,000 players so far. At this time, three more guilds arrived with 1,000-man teams.
Lured into the town, 7,000 players surrounded the Giant Steel Golem. It rained down fist after fist, killing several dozen players with each attack. Regardless of how many fell, more players kept charging forward, seemingly unafraid of death.
These players were all dreaming of hitting it big. The cost of most of the equipment on their bodies ranged from several dozen to several hundred gold, maybe up to a thousand for the richest ones among them. Meanwhile, bosses like the Giant Steel Golem and Phantom Princess Ina dropped equipment worth tens of thousands of gold at the very least! As long as they were lucky enough to win the loot scramble, the amount of gold they'd earn by selling one or two drops to the leader of a large guild or gaming organization was enough to replace their current set of gear with something five or six tiers higher!
Similar instances had happened before, with countless examples of players getting rich overnight. It was to the extent some people became professional loot scramblers. Whenever a boss was sighted, they would start stirring.
So, when news about Phantom Princess Ina attacking Crassus spread, all these loot scramblers came rushing over.
Even an elephant could be bitten to death by enough ants. No matter how powerful Phantom Princess Ina and her summons were, she had no way of blocking this unending tide of players! Every little bit of damage stacked up, whittling her health away.
Howl of Terror!
Phantom Princess Ina let out an ear-piercing wail, causing all players in a 50-meter radius to freeze in place before fleeing around like headless chickens.
Chaos and confusion fell over the battlefield. The Mages far in the rear stepped forward and unleashed their magic.
Nie Yan didn't dare to tangle with Phantom Princess Ina. He stealthily approached within 20 meters of the Giant Steel Golem. Inspecting it with Transcendent Insight, he discovered it only had 9% health left. It would soon fall.
The Giant Steel Golem went berserk and extracted a greataxe from its back. It swung the axe in a horizontal strike, unleashing a 10-meter wide crescent beam towards the crowd. BOOM! A hundred players were obliterated in an instant, transforming into rays of light.
"Crap! It went berserk!"
"Everyone, run! Wait for the berserk timer to wear off!"
"God dammit! You're still trying to scramble for loot in this situation? Quickly, run!"
The Giant Steel Golem madly pursued the fleeing players. It swept through everything in its path.
Nie Yan hid among the crowd. Seeing the Giant Steel Golem winding up for another swing, he dodged out of the way with Gale Step. As the blade cleaved down, he heard miserable cries coming from behind him.
Glancing back, close to a hundred corpses were lying on the ground.
The weak could only serve as cannon fodder.
The Giant Steel Golem left behind a trail of carnage and destruction wherever it passed.
Nie Yan circled behind the Giant Steel Golem. He was about 10 meters away. He closely eyed its back.
With the Giant Steel Golem's health falling to 3%, everyone anxiously waited for the finishing blow to be dealt. However, no one dared to charge forward. It was simply too dangerous. Anyone that approached would be instantly cleaved in half.
Spells ruthlessly bombarded the Giant Steel Golem. A continuous string of damage values floated up above its head.
The Giant Steel Golem's health finally dropped below 1%.
"It's almost dead! We can do this!"
"I'm counting on you guys to cover me when I go to snatch the drops!"
A few groups formed defensive lines, preventing the players behind them from passing through. The Thieves gathered at the front started pacing back and forth, preparing to pounce forward at a moment's notice. They would do anything and everything to win the loot scramble. The players caught further back attempted to forcefully squeeze through, driven by the allure of the Giant Steel Golem's potential loot drops. Those at the front wanted to hog everything for themselves. Of course they would be unwilling.
The Giant Steel Golem's health kept falling, 0.7%... 0.5%... 0.3%...
Nie Yan's figure blurred into motion, instantly arriving behind the Giant Steel Golem.
He pushed off from his waist, channelling all his power into one arm, and drove Zennarde's Sword into its back.
BOOM! The Giant Steel Golem crashed into the ground.
"Nice, I landed the killing blow." Nie Yan glanced at his notification bar. He had obtained more than 2,000 Honour.
Nie Yan was about to bent down and pick up the drops, when the Warriors and Thieves behind him rushed forward.
"The Giant Steel Golem died! Quickly, snatch the loot!"
"Stop that Thief!"
Blazing red clouds congealed in the sky. Fireballs started coming down like a torrential downpour.
"Fucking hell! Which asshole cast an AoE spell?"
Some Thieves and Warriors couldn't get away in time and were instantly overwhelmed by the deluge of fireballs. A blanket of damage values rose up into the sky.
"Damn! These guys aren't fooling around!" Nie Yan evaded the bombardment with Gale Step. After he was 30 meters away, he glanced back at the inferno. Lying on the ground among the raging flames were charred corpses.
The downpour of magic grew even more intense. The Mages had worked so hard to kill the Giant Steel Golem, but the Warriors wouldn't let them pass through. Seeing the loot about to be snatched away, they instantly became enraged. If we can't have it, no one can!
"Fuck! Kill anyone casting AoE magic!" the commander of an expedition team cursed out in a rage.
Everything within a 30-meter radius of the Giant Steel Golem's remains was engulfed in flames, lightning, and ice. "Forget it, not worth risking my life over." Nie Yan shook his head. "I snagged the Honour for killing the boss, and it's not like we're short on equipment anyway."
Nie Yan gazed at Phantom Princess Ina in the distance. "Let's go take a look at how they're doing over there…"
Nie Yan made his way toward the other battlefield.
The situation here was a lot more hectic than with the Giant Steel Golem. Several major powers were eying Phantom Princess Ina. Among them was Splendid Temple who had mobilized roughly 2,000 players. There was also God Executioner Sword, Heavenly Asura, Winter Darkness, and a few other guilds. Each had brought along at least 1,000 players. They were on high alert, preparing to scramble for the loot drops.
After Asskickers United, Holy Empire, Sapphire Shrine, and Radiant Sacred Flame, the next most powerful guilds in Calore were Death Descent, Splendid Temple, Sky Sievers, and Winter Darkness. They had either already established themselves in previous popular VRMMOs or recently risen to power. Since none of them controlled any strongholds, their incomes weren't that high. However, they couldn't be looked down on. Each guild had around 60,000 players with a decent ratio of elites.
Even though Asskickers United was powerful, they always kept a vigilant eye on these smaller guilds. If they grew powerful, their first targets would be the strongholds occupied by Asskickers United and its allies. To them, these guilds posed a major threat. They had nothing to lose. Since they didn't control any strongholds in the first place, it didn't matter if they were defeated by Asskickers United. The most Asskickers United could do to them was hunt them down and cause them some losses. If worse came to worst, they could simply dissolve and restart elsewhere with their core members.
Asskickers United had everything to lose and very little to gain, while these guilds had everything to gain and very little to lose.
So, for Asskickers United to secure their foundation, these second-rate guilds couldn't be allowed to grow more powerful. At the first signs of anything untoward, they would be smothered to death in the cradle.
The guild leaders of these four guilds were at the front lines commanding their troops. Nie Yan looked around and spotted the silhouettes of the five Thieves from Bloodfiends. They were lingering around in an area 20 meters away from Phantom Princess Ina. It was rumoured that Bloodfiends was a student club in the Top Military Academy. Two of the members were current students while the other three had already graduated. They were called Dark, Ardent, Shadow, Night, and Seal. The people under them were also all Thieves.
Since Nie Yan was going to be studying at the Top MIlitary Academy for the next four years, they were bound to bump into each other sooner or later.
"Last time, I almost died to your ambush. Now it's my turn to return the favour!" Nie Yan's eyes flashed with a cold light.
Nie Yan had grown much stronger since their last meeting. The main five from Bloodfiends were indeed skilled. It wasn't strange that they advanced to Shadow Dancers in the previous timeline. However, the current him could be described as a cheat.
Nie Yan played with the dagger in his hand before making his approach.
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