Chapter 504 - Magic Runestones
It didn't matter how powerful a player was, opposing a guild alone was impossible. Howling Wind was a prime example of this.
Nie Yan established Asskickers United precisely so he didn't have to fight alone.
Nie Yan had and would continue to sacrifice blood, sweat, and tears to put Asskickers United on the right track. It was his backing for opposing the Century Financial Group. At least in this life he was no longer fighting a one-man war.
Even if a fellow like Howling Wind couldn't be recruited, he could still become a powerful ally against Angel Corps. This was a genius among geniuses, an absolute peak talent. Of the dazzling figures that had appeared in the history of Conviction, he ranked among the top five.
By collecting information on Howling Wind now, he would be better prepared for when they met in the future.
After returning to Calore, Nie Yan dealt with some guild matters while stocking up on consumables for his next power levelling session. He also casually browsed the Union of Assassins. The request he put up for Magic Crystals and Radiant Crystals was more than half-complete. He currently had 16 Magic Crystals and 20 Radiant Crystals.
Nie Yan needed in total 20 Magic Crystals, 30 Radiant Crystals, 2 Life Crystals, and 1 Power Crystal to hatch the Darkwing Dragon.
The only thing Nie Yan had trouble finding right now were the Life Crystals. He could only keep looking.
With more than 50,000 professional players in its ranks, the Union of Assassins was growing ever larger. It was currently generating approximately 60,000 gold a day for Nie Yan. This formidable money-making machine was already in full swing.
The clientele base had grown considerably as well. There were already seven Marquises, whose lavish habits even left Nie Yan speechless, each having spent in the excess of 50,000 gold.
Be it a power levelling session or help clearing a high level dungeon, the people who requested these services were definitely extremely wealthy in real life.
Nie Yan suddenly had a bright idea. He should find some time to set up a gathering for Father Nie to expand his network of contacts. This would be extremely beneficial for World Bloc.
Glancing at the Union of Assassin's leaderboards, Nie Yan recognized many familiar names. Those in the top 30 in particular were all quite famous in the previous timeline. As professional players, they generally didn't involve themselves with the behind-the-scenes struggles of financial groups, or affiliate themselves with any particular guild. However, if something came up, one could always request their services on the mission boards. As long as the reward was attractive enough, they would accept. In this way, Asskickers United could make use of their strength.
Nie Yan brought a huge heap of Death Wave Scrolls and Magic Bombs with him to go power levelling in the wilderness. After grinding Level 90 Spiny Lizards non-stop for two days straight, he finally reached Level 80. He returned to Calore and deposited the equipment he collected into the guild treasury. Afterwards, he met up with Tang Yao for a second round of treasure hunting. His harvest this time around, though fruitful, couldn't compare to last time.
After sorting through all the loot, Nie Yan went to pick up the 3,000 javelins he previously requested to be enchanted. Then with his Javelin Launcher in hand, he prepared to set off.
As Nie Yan headed for the transfer area, a red wall on the side of the street caught his eye. He halted his footsteps. This was the famous Wall of Echoes. Anything a player said to the wall would be bounced back at them.
An NPC called Clemmy the Wise stood beside the Wall of Echoes. After listing five old tales, he would ask the player to guess the Legendary Items associated with each of them. As long as you got three out of the five correct, you would trigger a quest to collect Magic Runestones.
Magic Runestones were fairly common items that could be found in most large maps. Similar to gems, they were socketable. However, they only worked for weapons. There were seven types of Magic Runestones: fire, ice, lightning, water, earth, light, and darkness. Each provided damage bonuses corresponding to their respective element.
After collecting a full set of Magic Runestones, one of every element, you could return to Clemmy for an experience reward as well as a random chance at obtaining a piece of equipment. The amount of experience rewarded was enough to fill up a Level 80 player's experience bar by about one percent.
In the previous timeline, prior to this quest being triggered, the price of Magic Runestones was dirt cheap. When the public got wind of the quest, their price skyrocketed and the supply evaporated.
Back then, any time Nie Yan found Magic Runestones, he would sell them off in the trade hall. Many players were buying them since collecting a full set netted a considerable amount of experience. This kind of activity was exclusive to the wealthy, and something he at that time had no way of participating in. Even so, for poor players like him, the release of this quest was a gold mine.
At present, the quest was already out there. However, players still hadn't figured out the answers to Clemmy's riddle. So, for the time being, no one was bothering to hoard Magic Runestones.
In his past life, Nie Yan was too poor to join in on the fun. However, in this life, he wouldn't let the opportunity be snatched away by someone else. Even if he burned through some money, so what?
Nie Yan walked up to Clemmy. He was a short old man in red robes. With squinted eyes and his fingers supporting his chin, he seemed to be deep in thought.
Nie Yan initiated a conversation with Clemmy. He only had one opportunity to solve the riddle. If he failed to answer the questions correctly, he wouldn't get another chance.
"The Desolate Purgatory, Bloody Knight, Scorching Trial, Pull of Fate, and Eternal Law. Youngster, do you know what each of these represent?" Clemmy looked up and gazed at Nie Yan with narrowed eyes.
This was a famous riddle in the previous timeline. Two to three weeks from now, a player would figure out Eternal Law referred to the Book of Order. Some time after that, more players would correctly guess the other answers. Those who solved the riddle, rather than revealing it to the public, would start to frantically hoard Magic Runestones. However, no secret in the world could be kept forever. Around three months later, the answers to the riddle became public knowledge, and Magic Runestones started becoming expensive beyond belief. The two rarer types especially, Fire and Light Runestones, would sell in the excess of 1,000 gold.
Right now the price of Magic Runestones was around 50-60 gold.
"Desolate Purgatory refers to the Book of Chaos. The Bloody Knight refers to the Sword of Modiago. The Scorching Trial refers to Euvec's Staff of the Sun. The Pull of Fate refers to Pandora's Box. Lastly, Eternal Law refers to the Book of Order." Nie Yan smiled. He had long since known the answers to this riddle. What he found strange was that of the five items mentioned, he had come into contact with two of them. Pandora's Box was in his possession. As for the Book of Order, he had in his possession Volume I: Glimpse of Darkness. Perhaps he shared some sort of connection with this quest.
"Nirvana Flame, you are the first person to correctly guess all five items. I'm in need of Magic Runestones. Could I trouble you to help me find some?"
"No problem. I would be happy to be of service." Nie Yan nodded.A Wiseman's Search for Runestones (Repeatable): Help Clemmy find a full set of Magic Runestones.
"Your journey is only just beginning. Go seek out your destiny. Nirvana Flame, you are a person with great knowledge," Clemmy smiled.
Nie Yan checked the quest description. Sure enough, this was the right one. It was exactly the same as in the previous timeline. He hoped for a brief moment he would receive an additional reward for correctly guessing all five answers. However, Clemmy's ordinary response left him disappointed. That said, he had gotten what he came here for. He contacted Guo Huai and prepared to acquire Magic Runestones on a large scale.
Right now, Magic Runestones were priced at around 50-60 gold, with the higher quality ones going for upwards of 100 gold. However, not many people had a use for them. They simply weren't as cost effective as gems. There was a fairly ample supply of them in the market. So, Nie Yan planned to employ a little trick. He would have Guo Huai dispatch people to the street markets and advertise they were selling Magic Runestones in bulk, 30 gold each with a minimum purchase of 20. If someone actually showed interest in buying, they would simply reply they had just sold out.
Magic Runestones generally weren't bought and sold in large quantities. So, this kind of price drop was impossible to miss.
Guo Huai would have his subordinates advertise at 30 gold on the first day, 25 gold on the second day, and 20 gold on the third day, giving off the impression that the Magic Runestone market was on the verge of crashing. This would spur players to panic sell their stockpiles. All the while Asskickers United would be there in the background to reap the benefits. Not only would this method save them quite a bit of gold, but it would also allow them to acquire more Magic Runestones. This was killing two birds with one stone!
"This method isn't bad. We can try it with other items too, like gems," Guo Huai said. He would first have the people under him create an artificial market crash and then buy up everything for dirt cheap. Finally, when supply could no longer meet demand and the prices started spiking again, he would offload everything. Like this, they stood to make a hefty profit.
"Oh, it'll definitely work once or twice, but any more and people will start seeing through it," Nie Yan said. Players weren't stupid. They would definitely stop falling for this scam after the first or second time.
"So what if we're seen through? We've already made our money anyway. It's impossible for us to take a loss," Guo Huai chuckled.
"Well, I'll leave it to you."
Guo Huai immediately got to work. He needed to gather the money first before having everything arranged. This task had to be carried out with the utmost secrecy.