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Chapter 309 – Great Thief

Setting up the Super Trade Channel was actually pretty easy. Aggregating all the data from the auction houses was no problem. The other steps were just as simple. Nie Yan hid his name to maintain anonymity, while at the top of the announcement board he wrote a simple welcome message: For convenient trading between players. In addition, he specified the origin of goods—all came from the three auction houses in Calore. That way, the channel also served as a form of advertisement. Of course, goods from the Starry Night Potion Shop would be sold here too.

「What’s this?」Guo Huai asked in a daze after Nie Yan invited him to the channel.

「A channel for trading,」Nie Yan replied, then explained his plans for the Super Trade Channel.

Guo Huai’s eyes lit up. Nie Yan’s idea for a Super Trade Channel was most certainly doable, its potential endless. It was similar to online shopping in the sense that players could browse for goods to purchase without ever needing to return to the city. This would have a significant effect on the entire game. Advertising the trading channel wasn’t anything difficult either, a few server announcements would suffice.

「Hire some staff to make the deliveries, and also get a supervisor,」Nie Yan instructed. Since he lacked the time to manage the Super Trade Channel himself, he could only delegate the job.

「Got it, I’ll put Zhao Li in charge. I’ll assign him and his staff to help you manage the Super Trade Channel,」Guo Huai said. Both he and Hao Cheng were supervising an overwhelming amount of other work, leaving only Zhao Li available.

「Then it’s decided. Zhao Li will be responsible for this,」Nie Yan nodded.

「This is a great idea! If this channel starts gaining traction early on, it’ll have enormous potential!」Zhao Li exclaimed.「Should we also contact the owners of other auction houses and pull them into this channel? We could even ask for an entrance fee and a fixed commission for each successful sale.」

「Sharp thinking! Keep working on it and get back to me in a bit.」Nie Yan smiled. Zhao Li has a rather bright mind.

「What’s the channel called?」Zhao Li asked.

「The Super Trade Channel. It’s easy to remember and rolls nicely off the tongue.」

「That works,」Zhao Li nodded.

By the time Nie Yan left the call, Zhao Li had started on perfecting the trading system in the channel. On the other end, Guo Huai had also begun working on the logistics of the delivery staff, such as their wages.

Back in the Crystal Caverns, Nie Yan followed behind the group as they cleared the mobs up ahead. After an hour or so, they suddenly received several server announcements—advertisements from Guo Huai which provided a basic introduction to the Super Trade Channel. They included basic information such as its purpose, the convenience of purchasing items anytime and anywhere, and so on.

The Super Trade Channel immediately attracted a tidal wave of attention once the announcements were out. Before long, Nie Yan’s traffic charts exploded as players flooded into the channel. To their astonishment, they discovered that the Super Trade Channel was actually connected to the three biggest auction houses in Calore! Goods were well stocked, and the prices were nearly identical to the auction houses’!

Players started testing out the system, purchasing some items they needed. After just several minutes, they received a system announcement informing them that the item they purchased had been deposited into their personal storage.

The first transaction was completed successfully. The second transaction was completed successfully. The third transaction… In a mad frenzy, the players in the Super Trade Channel began purchasing everything they wanted. Traffic in the channel soared in a flash from thousands to tens of thousands, the number of sales increasing accordingly.

The hysteria in the Super Trade Channel rid Nie Yan of the last bits of doubt in his mind. His experiment was successful: the profitability of the Super Trade Channel vastly outperformed the Union of Assassins. Then again, the Union of Assassins only involved a small subsection of the playerbase, while the Super Trade Channel was relevant to every player. Online shopping was something everyone enjoyed, so they naturally flocked to the Super Trade Channel to purchase a large variety of goods. This much was apparent from the soaring traffic numbers.

Once players became completely accustomed to navigating, browsing, and purchasing items, the number of sales per day would grow beyond imagination. Even charging a miniscule commission for each transaction would accumulate to a vast sum.

With this new stream of income, Nie Yan could attract players from all over and bring more and more experts into Asskickers United. Most guilds warred for resources. But with a booming treasury, who could compete with him?

Although other auction houses might also start their own variation of a trade channel, the Super Trade Channel would always remain at the forefront since it was the first to appear.

With it fully operational, funding the salaries of the delivery staff would pose no problem.

The Super Trade Channel had processed several hundred items in a matter of minutes, and the transaction volume just continued rising exponentially. It was truly an astonishing speed.

Even Nie Yan hadn’t expected results to bloom so quickly. It seemed that the system announcement had quite the effect. But then again, after investing 2,000 gold, it was only natural there would be some sort of result. They could continue investing more into advertisements to spread the word when the Super Trade Channel became even more profitable, allowing it to become the go-to place for all shopping players.

Nie Yan instructed Zhao Li to make sure no issues occurred in the delivery process, and also ran over each segment of the system in detail with him.

The Super Trade Channel would become one of his largest sources of income, so of course he had to be careful with it.

After settling everything, Nie Yan closed out of the voice chat. Smoke Stub, Bladelight, and the others turned their gazes toward him.

“Are you behind this Super Trade Channel?” Smoke Stub asked. They had been killing mobs for just a short while, yet Nie Yan had already started another huge commotion. This was quite impressive.

“Yep,” Nie Yan replied with a light smile. “How is it? Any trouble so far?”

The Super Trade Channel was a revolutionary idea that would change the way the game was played. It gave way to an entirely new way of trading.

“Not bad,” Smoke Stub answered. “I picked up a few consumables just now. It’s pretty convenient. I received them just a few minutes after purchasing them.” The Super Trade Channel was welcomed by Smoke Stub with open arms, and one could imagine that other players felt the same. In fact, it would be strange if this were not the case.

In less than 10 minutes, Nie Yan’s income had reached an astounding 20,000 gold, all of which was pure profit! He was looking forward to seeing how much the Super Trade Channel would grow in the future.

A while later, Guo Huai finished drafting up the contracts for the buyout of Holy Empire and Sapphire Shrine. Nie Yan, Sleepy Fox, and Fa Lan verified the terms before signing it. After which Nie Yan ordered Guo Huai and Bird to deposit the first 30,000 gold installment into their guild treasuries.

From now on, Nie Yan would be the largest shareholder in Sapphire Shrine and Holy Empire. The future development of this alliance was just around the corner.

Sleepy Fox and Fa Lan went back to their guild headquarters to announce the news to their members. A guild obtaining an investor was something worthy of celebration. It signified the start of a period of rapid growth!

Nie Yan and the others pressed forwards into the Crystal Caverns. There were seven Level 50 Elite Crystalline Molemen in an opening up ahead. It would already be an impressive feat if they could deal with two or three of these elites at once, to say nothing of all of them.

This was the exact point where the expedition team of Bloodlust Blades wiped.

These Elite Crystalline Molemen completely blocked off their path.

“What should we do?” Everyone was brainstorming for ways of dealing with the group of monsters barring their way.

Nie Yan recalled the information gathered on the forums regarding Crystalline Molemen, then said, “I’ll lure five of them away. You guys take care of the other two.”

“Big Bro, let me join in,” Sun said.

“Do you want us to help too?” One Strike Vow chimed in.

“No need. More people will just complicate things. Who here has Shadow Arrow?” Nie Yan looked over the group. Shadow Arrow was a rather special skill that didn’t generate much aggro.

“I do,” Natural Fiend said.

“Good, that makes things a lot easier. I’ll go lure the mobs. When I have their attention, use Shadow Arrow to split the aggro,” Nie Yan said and set up the entire mobbing process.

Crystalline Molemen moved rather slowly. So long as he wasn’t cornered, there would be no problem. But to do this in the confines of the Crystal Caverns posed a bit of a challenge.

Bladelight and the rest of the group finished up preparations, while Nie Yan entered stealth and used Transcendent Insight to investigate the Crystalline Molemen

Crystalline Moleguard (Elite): Level 50
Health 120,000/120,000

These Crystalline Moleguards were roughly three meters tall, not much larger than the typical Elite. Covering their bodies were crystalline lumps that protruded out like stakes. In combination with the two-meter long thick pikes they wielded, these Molemen appeared quite fearsome.

It was a mystery what items would drop from killing a Level 50 Elite.

At Level 50, players could attempt a Class Advancement Quest. Their stats would rise exponentially if they successfully completed the quest. To accommodate for this sudden increase of the average player’s strength, the mobs also received a buff at Level 50. This led to Level 50 becoming somewhat of a special number in the minds of the players.

Nie Yan glanced at his current level, 31. After dealing with these Elites, he would still have to keep on working on his level. After reaching Level 50, he could undertake the Class Advancement Quest for a Great Thief; the reward for completing this quest was something he already looked forward to.

Typically, one or two in every one hundred Level 50 Thieves that attempted the Great Thief’s Class Advancement Quest would succeed. In the previous timeline, Nie Yan had only done so when he was nearly Level 70.

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