To this day, there were two reasons why the Potter Family was able to remain as one of the 10 great families. The first reason was due to their insistence on maintaining their way of unarmed combat. As for the second, they had placed the absolute majority of their family's resources into scientific research. Coupled with a couple dozen years of perseverance, it had allowed the Potter Family to become the foremost authority in science within the entire Freedom Federation. It was the combination of these two factors that allowed the Potter Family, with their lower than average combat strength, to possess the "power" to keep up with the other 9 great families.
Truthfully speaking, the 10 great families weren't the absolute representation of martial and combat strength. Other than the Potter Family, who stood at the peak of scientific research, the Musk Family that was eliminated in the afternoon had anchored their place in the 10 great families via economic power and wealth. To them, something as small scale as a "group battle" or duel was in fact extremely disadvantageous. On the contrary, they excelled in large scale "war level" fights!
"Looks like we've been looked down upon."
After looking at the evaluations and verdicts given to their squadron for this match, a faint smile appeared on Anlor's face.
As for Arnold Teuton, a shrug was his response. It was time for them to give everyone a surprise.
The two looked at each other before exchanging a smile. Over the past few months, their growth rate and progress had reached a level that even frightened themselves. At this moment, it was time to transmit this feeling of fright to other people. Anlor's growth was especially rapid. Being the first person to get thrashed by All Mouthy King, he had borne witness to Wang Zhong's god-like performances from the start. It had to be said that Wang Zhong was an extremely huge stimulation and motivational factor for Anlor, as for every second and time, he would treat Wang Zhong as his one and only goal.
Brimming with ambition and grandeur, the Hell City squadron had sent out their vice-captain Manchester.
They wanted to obtain victory, and wanted to obtain grandeur.
Upon stepping on stage, Manchester immediately gave a furious roar, sending a powerful aura sweeping across the entire arena. He was a well-known participant of the CHF, and possessed extremely rare subclass ability of the earth attribute special ability, Earth Dragon's surge. With offence and defence being integrated as one, he excelled in the all-out combat style of exchanging injuries to obtain victory.
At this moment, everyone was waiting for Copperfield's participant to walk onto the stage. Who could it be? Other than Laura or Karkel, there seemed to be no one within the entire Copperfield squadron that had any hope of bringing down Manchester.
"It's Anlor. That's a normal choice made by Copperfield. Can't they use any other strategy? Of the 100 matches they have fought, all 100 of them had Anlor as their vanguard."
"Anlor possesses a berserker soul and excels in twin axes. His fighting style is known to be forceful and ferocious, characteristics that are similar to that of Manchester. However, his strength should be a level lower than his opponent. These two have had three matches against each other in the OP, with Manchester obtaining victory for all three."
"Looks like Copperfield is straight up forfeiting the first duel. After all, that's Manchester, the vice-captain of the Hell City squadron."
"That's right. They're placing their victory chances on the group battle. Copperfield is indeed extremely frightening in group battles."
As usual, the analysts would give the audience an introduction to the squadrons and their members duking it out in this match. At this moment, they were still not privy to the matter that was going on, as all of them had assumed that Anlor would lose. That was due to the fact that Manchester was in the Elite Division of the OP. Furthermore, his match records have indicated that he had not lost even once against Anlor, who was only at the Hero Division.
However, people can change after only three days of separation, what more if it was a span of a few months. The frightening aspect of the Casted Soul Stage was the plasticity of one's strength, with incredible changes and transformations possibly occurring within a short period of time. Even people who possessed mediocre talent would also grab hold of this opportunity to unlock their potential to the fullest!
Both sides could be considered as old rivals. Upon walking up the stage, there was no need for any preparations or probing, as both of them were berserkers. Without a single word being said, they immediately smashed furiously into each other. Defence? There was no need!
Anlor was immediately sent into a bloodthirsty frenzy, his eyes turning red, while red coloured Soul Power burst forth from his body as his muscles swelled in size.
His opponent, Manchester had also roared out furiously. His entire body suddenly expanded by a size larger, while an earthen yellow glow sparkled on his body with the activation of his earth attribute defensive special ability.
As the axes clashed against the greatsword, berserk Soul Powers smashed against each other in contention. Rivals would always meet on a narrow road, where the braver one would obtain victory.
Manchester was extremely confident, as he had never lost once against Anlor during the few times they had crossed hands. This was a confidence that had already formed something akin to a suppression.
However, just as both parties were about to let their intent explode all the way to their peaks, at the instant where a single move would determine the victory, the fury and rage present in Anlor's eyes suddenly disappeared, replaced by cool-headed calmness!
He proceeded to give up his attack, and did not even raise any defence. Just like that, he left himself exposed to Manchester...
"Anlor, do you know what a genuine berserker is?"
On the first day when Karkel had joined their squadron, he had immediately found Anlor before asking this question.
What nonsensical question was this! If not for this Karkel being a member of his captain Laura's family, he would have already hurled curses back at him. Did this guy really dare to say words like that just because he has a powerful backer?
However, Karkel followed up by showing him a video. It was taken in the desert, and showed a black-skinned member of the empire, who was currently facing over a hundred mutated demonic wolves. Without any suspense, the empire soldier was mauled by the demonic wolves to the brink of death. Just as he was nearing death, he suddenly erupted into a berserk frenzy, with blood red Soul Power gushing into the sky...
"In the beginning, a berserker was known as a death soldier, as the speciality of their strength lay in them becoming stronger the more they got injured. It is at death's door where they will be at their strongest. In fact, during a near-death state, they are capable of killing soldiers that are a whole level stronger than them." Karkel told him that the so-called "berserkers" of the Federation were merely infants in swaddling clothes. They only had the appearance, yet lacked the essence of a genuine berserker. That was due to the Federation's living conditions being too good, with everyone being treated as a treasure that they were not willing to sacrifice. To them, losing a certain level of might just to be safe was worth it for them. However, this wasn't the case for the Tutankhamun Empire. Over there, life and death fights were like having porridge for breakfast. While it wasn't the most frequent occurrence, it could be commonly seen.
Anlor was extremely clear that he was definitely not a match for Manchester. However, that was when he was in a normal state!
Anlor was sent flying like a ragdoll, before smashing on the ground. Intense pain racked his entire body. In that previous instant, Manchester's greatsword had created three heavy injuries on his body, where blood was now pouring out from like a spring.
Yet, this was precisely what he wanted.
Madness, was a kind of death-seeking state!
There would never be anyone who would die faster than a berserker!
What seemed to be a short duel had unexpectedly turned into a bitter and violent fight. When the fight finally came to an end, Manchester no longer appeared even remotely like a human…
Anlor stood in the middle of the stage like a demonic god, raising his head and axes high into the air before giving a ferocious roar! After the referee announced his victory, he collapsed heavily on the ground. He had upheld the pride of Copperfield! Unlike all the other families' squadrons, the Potter Family was a part of Copperfield City, and not its ruler. Unlike the other families who were itching to engrave their names into every corner of their cities, Copperfield City was home of every Copperfield citizen!
This was completely different from the other aristocratic families.
Anlor's victory was just the start.
Everyone assumed that Copperfield wasn't strong, and had always felt that their S rank evaluation was obtained due to the Potter Family being one of the 10 great families.
That was a grave mistake!
In the second duel, Arnold Teuton had gone on stage. With his new shooting and gun techniques, he had completely wrecked Hell City's mainstay ranged soldier. Arnold Teuton's growth was also slightly frightening, with clear evidence of him obtaining the guidance from a master.
However, it obviously wasn't Laura who had transformed the Copperfield squadron from something rotten to something magical. Yes, she was very strong, yet she did not possess the power to achieve such a feat. Instead, she had an external source of help!
In the past competitions, the Potter Family did not have any experts appearing out of thin air. Therefore, this had led to them obtaining somewhat average results. However, they clearly could not treat this CHF lightly.
Laura graced the stage for the third duel. Being an extremely seasoned participant, her explosive bear move appeared to have been researched by every single squadron. Naturally, the weaknesses of her Bear Rules The World had also been countered via various means, especially when people could rely on the method that All Mouthy King had used.
However, everyone had been mistaken on one matter, which was that time would lead to changes. Laura wasn't a rock. Clearly heeding Wang Zhong's suggestions, she had improved on her Bear Rules The World by fusing her wind attribute special ability with her Flaming Explosive Bear. Wind strengthened fire, while fire strengthened the wind's reach. The evolved version of her Bear Rules The World had scared her opponent to the brink of incontinence.
In the fourth duel, being one of the 5 great ranged soldiers, Karkel had gone up to face against the captain of the Hell City squadron, Wilson.
However, he had not used any ranged weapon at all, and had just used the Potter's way of unarmed combat to pummel Wilson to the ground.
The ambitious Hell City had assumed that they could take down Copperfield, and felt that they possessed the combat strength to rival an S rank squadron. Just like that, Hell City, which was only lacking in some background, was eliminated from the CHF in a 4:0 fashion.
Due to this match, the Copperfield squadron was being completely re-evaluated. Every member of theirs were stronger than everyone had expected. Clearly, the Mo's List had overlooked Karkel, who had displayed an unfathomable level of strength.
A toothless dog wouldn't bite people. With such a terrifying close combat prowess, why would he be a ranged soldier?
The third day of matches had ended, with the Blazing squadron, Seer squadron, Copperfield squadron and the Asuna Ocean God squadron successfully promoting into the top 16. Without a doubt, the greatest glory belonged to the Blazing squadron and their victory in the fight between two fires. They had defeated the S ranked Fiery Arrow squadron, with their black magician Mario becoming the new focal point of the CHF.
Being a veteran powerhouse, the Seer squadron had advanced in domineering fashion, something that everyone had expected. As for the Asuna Ocean God squadron, they had done so via bitter combat before settling their opponents in the group battle phase. However, there were people making explosive allegations in Skylink that this squadron wasn't as simple as they appear to be. Other than their captain, the other members of their main lineup were all-powerful special ability users. That meant that the reason why the Asuna Ocean God squadron had pushed this match into the group battle phase was due to them not wanting to expose the special abilities of their members. This resulted in them fighting with their opponents with one hand tied behind their backs. If they were allowed to freely display their special abilities, the Asuna Ocean God squadron had the possibility of sweeping their opponents as easily as those aristocratic families had done so in the CHF.
The fourth day was the last day of the round-of-32. The final eight squadrons duking it out today had already made their final preparations.
In the morning were two intense matches between 4 ranked squadrons. Finally, the Barbarian squadron and the Highland Knights squadron obtained victories over the Goddess and Qinglai squadrons and entered the top 16.
The two matches in the afternoon weren't much of a highlight: the Stuart squadron against the ranked Dazzling Sunlight squadron, and the Heaven's Fate squadron against the A ranked Euro squadron.
No more scenarios of S ranked squadrons being counterattacked occurred in these two matches, as the two S ranked squadron crushed their opponents in 4:0 flawless victories, safeguarding the honour and glory of the aristocratic families.
At this moment, the top 16 positions had all been filled.
They were respectively :
Giant God Peak squadron, Blazing Angels squadron, Eye of the Storm squadron, Divine Ghost Martial Emperor squadron;
Tianjing squadron, Torres squadron, Grozny squadron, Mammoth squadron;
Copperfield squadron, Blazing squadron, Asuna Ocean God squadron, Seer squadron;
Barbarian squadron, Stuart squadron, Heaven's Fate squadron, Highland knights squadron.
There were clearly some who were happy and some who were sad upon the announcement of the top 16 squadrons. Some people never had even the slightest dream of entering the top 16, while it was something expected for others, whose goal was to become the champion. However, once a squadron entered the top 16 ranks in the CHF, the official Skylink sites of the various great academies of the Federation would simultaneously announce the first class evaluation given to the academies those top 16 squadrons were representing. These academies would obtain first-class resource allocation, while obtaining preferential treatment during policymaking.
Take for example the benefit an academy would have if it were allowed to double the number of formal teaching staff it had. The formal teaching staff of an academy affected its ability to influence people to enrol into the academy, as well as the benefits the teaching staff have. Without a doubt, it would also attract outstanding teaching staff from different occupations and roles. This would add quite a few points to the academy during the various gradings and evaluations conducted by various agencies of the Federation. Although this might not be considered much for the handful of people standing at the apex, it was extremely important for the absolute majority of students. Furthermore, it was also a source of pride, honour and status.
However, even this wasn't considered much, as the show had just begun. The CHF great competition was now entering an even more thrilling state, as just one more round of advancement was left before the crowning of the top 8!
Of the entire Federation, of the tens of thousands of Heroic Soul Academies of various sorts, these were the eight greatest ones!
It could be said the top 8 rankings had contained so many benefits, to the point where even the word "everything" would suffice! This was especially true for this CHF, as it was exceptionally different from previous ones, especially with regards to standard and realm.
To the commoners, it represented fame, prestige, benefits, success and accomplishment. Everything that one dreamed of in the past could be easily obtained just by crossing this obstacle! As for the members of the various aristocratic families, they would definitely be able to obtain much more than those commoners! Not only would their positions within their families get stabilised, they would also be able to establish their foundations to enter the ruling level of the Federation
The city of Tianjing had already descended into mad celebrations for the past 2 days... in recent days, the number of crazy celebrations had been a little too many, as the up and down emotions from watching the matches were too stimulating. However, it was nothing, as this was something they needed to do! The businessmen of Tianjing were the most emotional ones, and had already treated the Tianjing squadron and Wang Zhong as their gods. The sales they had made from just the past few days have already more or less caught up with their earnings from the past 2 to 3 months.
As for the Tianjing Academy, it had been completely turned into a sacred ground. Every single document and thesis written by Wang Zhong had been flipped open. In the past, no one had paid attention to them. However, everyone was now earnestly studying through them. What's even more exaggerated was that the homework and assignments he had handed up to the various teachers had now been treated as collector's items, and were even fought over by a few teachers. These were the work of All Mouthy King! Fuck! A dozen years down the road, this would be the proof that I've taught Wang Zhong before! Even All Mouthy King had to obediently hand up the homework I've given! If not, hmph, hmph!
On the afternoon of the second day, the CHF officials issued the official numbers for the top 16 squadrons in accordance with their performance in this CHF.