Chapter 432 - Unification of Calore
A chaotic melee ensued between Radiant Sacred Flame and Victorious Return, two old allies ultimately ending up on opposite sides.
Heaven Breaker had planned to preserve his strength by withdrawing his troops from the main battlefield, while waiting for the Crypt Lord's summon duration to end. At that time, the battle outside the plains of the Cripps Stronghold would be wrapping up. Although the more than 100,000 players from Bloodlust Blades, Alliance of Mages, and Divine Protectors would be wiped out, Asskickers United, Sapphire Shrine, and Holy Empire would also suffer heavy losses, having at most less than a quarter of their original force remaining. Not to mention they would be exhausted and weary.
Heaven Breaker would take this chance and join forces with Radiant Sacred Flame. With their combined force of over 100,000 players, they could annihilate the weakened Asskickers United, Sapphire Shrine, and Holy Empire and capture the Cripps Stronghold. After divvying up the remaining strongholds with Radiant Sacred Flame, Victorious Return could once more rise to glory!
Sadly, plans rarely worked out that smoothly, and reality was indeed far crueler.
Radiant Sacred Flame had turned traitor at this crucial juncture, catching Heaven Breaker with his pants down. It was revealed that Asskickers United had acquired Radiant Sacred Flame long ago. This wasn't something he could've ever imagined, not even in his wildest dreams. Of course he wasn't willing to go down like this, but he had been checkmated.
Victorious Return and Radiant Sacred Flame clashed fiercely. It would be a while for an outcome to be reached. By then, the struggle at the Cripps Stronghold would've long since concluded.
Nie Yan led the massacre while riding on top of the Crypt Lord. The remaining forces of Alliance of Mages and Divine Protectors didn't stand a chance.
Checking the time, only 30 minutes remained on the Crypt Lord's three-hour summon duration. After clearing away the stragglers, there would be no time left to help Radiant Sacred Flame. However, the remaining forces of Asskickers United, Sapphire Shrine, and Holy Empire were more than enough. Then they could dispose of the enemy together. The fate of Victorious Return was sealed!
Victory was inevitable!
Nie Yan looked over the casualties. Due to the three Armoured Catapults, Asskickers United's side had lost close to 80,000 players: 50,000 from Asskickers United and 30,000 from the elites of the five branch guilds. Of the more than 100,000 players stationed in the Cripps Stronghold, only 20,000 remained.
Sapphire Shrine and Holy Empire had also suffered heavy losses. Of the more than 120,000 players that arrived, only 30,000 survived. Thankfully, with the assistance of the Crypt Lord, they had finally defeated the enemy. The several thousand remaining from Alliance of Mages and Divine Protectors fled to the neighbouring maps.
Nie Yan dispatched 3,000 Thieves to collect the spoils of war on the battlefield.
The harvests from such a long war were considerable, enough to cover some of their losses.
With the war over, it was important for Asskickers United to start recuperating. If they were dragged into another war of this scale, even if they didn't lose, they would be worn down into collapse. The average level of their players had fallen too low.
Nie Yan had the Crypt Lord continue chasing the fleeing players from Alliance of Mages and Divine Protectors, so he could keep increasing his gains from the war.
The surviving players from Asskickers United gathered together and prepared to set off to help Radiant Sacred Flame defeat Victorious Return.
The players from Asskickers United were all surprised when they heard that Radiant Sacred Flame had joined their side as many conflicts had broken out between them even just recently. Since when did Radiant Sacred Flame become their ally? Nonetheless, all of them were excited since this meant their victory was settled. It appeared that Nie Yan had planned for this long in advance!
Surrounded on both sides, Victorious Return was quickly routed. The betrayal of Radiant Sacred Flame had struck a fatal blow to their morale. One of their oldest allies had sided with an enemy!
With Bloodlust Blades, Alliance of Mages, and Divine Protectors defeated, Victorious Return was completely surrounded. Even if they won by some miracle, so what? They no longer had a place in Calore.
Thus, everyone in Victorious Return lost their will to fight.
Victorious Return's two strongholds had also been captured in quick succession.
This battle at the Cripps Stronghold had ultimately led to the collapse of Victorious Return.
All of Calore now belonged to Asskickers United!
After 30 minutes, the Crypt Lord's summon time came to an end. Bennett's Soul flew out of the Crypt Lord's body and returned to Nie Yan's bag.
Without a soul supporting the vessel. the Crypt Lord looked no different from a statue as its vitality rapidly dissipated from its body. Small cracks started spreading along its carapace before it finally collapsed into a pile of dust. Its summoning had been a great success.
At long last, the siege of the Cripps Stronghold came to a conclusion.
The Priests on the battlefield could finally bring back the fallen such as Smoke Stub. Some players, who were on teams that lacked a Priest with a Revive, could only resurrect in the graveyard, meaning the level loss would be a bit more severe.
Nie Yan found to his dismay that the players who died during the war would drop an average of five levels, a measure set by the system to prevent a guild from bouncing back too quickly after a siege. This penalty was far too harsh!
However, the penalty applied to both sides. The fallen players from Bloodlust Blades and the other guilds would also drop five levels.
Before long, Nie Yan received word that Bloodlust Blades had disbanded. Some of their elites entered Alliance of Mages and Divine Protectors. The ordinary players weren't so lucky. They were abandoned and left to their own devices.
As for the Blackstone Stronghold, following the dissolution of Bloodlust Blades, it naturally went back to Asskickers United.
Wars were always a coexistence of profits and losses. For example, though Asskickers United had sustained heavy losses this time, they had obtained two strongholds and furthermore cemented their position. Their spoils were quite sizable. There was no longer anyone left in Calore that could threaten them, putting them on the same starting point as Angel Corps. Both guilds stood unopposed in the capitals of their respective nations.
Although Asskickers United was still a far ways off from being seen as equals to Angel Corps, their future was bright!
Nie Yan, Guo Huai, and the others started tallying up their losses from the war. All the loot they collected was placed in the guild treasury, a total of over 26,000 pieces of equipment. Since Sapphire Shrine, Holy Empire, and Radiant Sacred Flame were acquired, they all shared the same treasury. Naturally, the merit points to purchase things would be provided by Asskickers United.
Guo Huai and the other higher-ups started distributing rewards to participants of the war, especially to those that lost five levels. The higher the kill count, the more generous the reward. Upstart, who had destroyed one of the Armoured Catapults with his Advanced Magic, received the largest reward.
Asskickers United had paid out close to 600,000 gold and a large amount of guild contribution after it was all worked out. If Nie Yan hadn't returned to the Underworld, there was no way they could cover a cost of this level.
However, with the unification of Calore, all the strongholds in the territory now belonged to Asskickers United. The 600,000 gold would be made back in no time.
In the following days, Asskickers United would be consolidating their strength by clearing away all their rivals and capturing the remaining strongholds. Afterwards, they would focus on quickly raising the level of their players to keep Angel Corps from pulling further ahead.
With so many matters that required tending to, Asskickers United's administrative team was swamped with work. Nie Yan's job was a lot cushier in comparison. All he had to do was occasionally give out an order or two. What he would focus on next was using his ten years of game experience to make the guild even more powerful.
Right now, Calore was unified. Even if Alliance of Mages and Divine Protectors tried to pull anything funny, they would find themselves powerless. To say nothing of Angel Corps who was so far away in the Satreen Empire. At best, they could only dispatch some elites to stir up a bit of trouble. Before flying mounts were released, they posed no threat.
According to the events of the previous timeline, flying mounts would only appear a year and a half after the release of the Buried History expansion. This was a crucial point in time. If Asskickers United failed to catch up to Angel Corps by then, they would be in trouble. The following months would be a period of peace and growth.
Since the release of Conviction, by relying on his previous life's experience, Nie Yan had obtained powerful equipment, finished a high difficulty quest that earned him the Crypt Lord, and led Asskickers United in the unifcation of Calore. But no matter how strong he became in the future, he could never be invincible by himself. To have achieved his current success was already remarkably impressive. Beyond Level 100 would be the era of Master-classes, Shadow Dancers, Magisters, Sword Saints, Bishops, Champions, and so on.
The countless Master-class players would be the rulers of this era.
Each one of them was peerless talent. It would be great if Nie Yan could even rank within the top 10 by relying on his earlier superiority. But for him to maintain his current dominance was difficult. After all, a single person could only do so much. All he could do was make Asskickers United powerful!
Asskickers United had gathered so many elites. Nie Yan planned to use his ten years of gaming experience to guide them. Within the next year and a half, he wanted to transform the guild into a galaxy of shining stars!
Nie Yan needed to go from being a mere skilled player to a true guild leader who would guide all those who looked up to him!