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Chapter 564 - Training Freedom Skills

After cycling through his skills, Backbreaker came off cooldown. Nie Yan found his rhythm and started steadily rotated through his skills.

The Barbarian Warrior repeatedly hacked at Nie Yan. Each swing of its axe carried significant weight and power behind it. However, none of the attacks landed. Nie Yan kept utilizing the illusory footwork of a Shadow Dancer to evade while simultaneously executing one skill after another. The Barbarian Warrior couldn’t keep up with his pace and was completely helpless against him. The difference in speed between the two was too great.

The Barbarian Warrior’s axe came cleaving down. Nie Yan dodged to the side and executed Phantom Assassination, stabbing the warrior in the throat with Zennarde’s Sword. 

The Barbarian Warrior let out a deep grunt and collapsed to the ground with a loud thud.

Killing the Barbarian Warrior took about two minutes. It was quite exhausting.

Phantom Assassination has advanced to Rank 3.

While fighting the Barbarian Warrior, his skill proficiency for all his skills skyrocketed up. Nie Yan felt ecstatic.

After reaching Rank 3, Phantom Assassination dealt 100% more damage and had a 5% chance of instantly killing a target. For every rank increase, the damage would go up by another 50%, and the execution chance would by 1%.

If Phantom Assassination could be raised to Rank 7, it would deal 300% more damage and have a 9% chance of executing a target. Combined with Nie Yan’s ludicrous attack power, this skill would become incredibly overpowered!

At this moment, Reverse Grip Backstab had reached Rank 4, Phantom Assassination and Backbreaker Rank 3, and Flicker Strike Rank 2. Since Nie Yan never had much time to train these skills in the past, he wasn’t too familiar with them, causing his execution of them to be a bit sloppy. But now, he had more or less grasped them and could consistently achieve a completion rate of 60% or higher.

As for how to get the completion rate even higher and grasping some of the deeper intricacies of the skills, Nie Yan still had a long way to go.

The Barbarian Warrior appeared to drop something. Nie Yan bent down and picked it up. It was a Warrior skill book for ‘Enhance Tendon Break’. It could  increase the effects of Tendon Break by 30%. This was a fairly rare skill book which couldn’t be found in the marketplace.

“Nice! I wonder if Bladelight or Smoke Stub could use this. I’ll ask them when I get back.” Nie Yan tossed the skill book into his bag.

His harvest was quite bountiful. The only downside to this map was that the Barbarian Warriors didn’t give experience. Such high health and defense and yet not a single point experience, talk about being stingy. This also meant that if Nie Yan wanted to keep training here, he couldn’t level up.

Nie Yan glanced at his status bar—Level 97. Looking at the leaderboards, there were only two people over Level 80. Once you reached Level 80, levelling up would become more than several times harder. Catching up to him would take at least a month or two. If they were slow, even three months wouldn’t be enough time for them to break through Level 90.

So, even if Nie Yan were to stay here for a month, he wouldn’t have to worry about others catching up to him.

“Let’s train up my skills first!” Nie Yan moved on to his next target.

He spotted another Barbarian Warrior roaming around off in the distance.

Nie Yan entered stealth. He circled around to the back of the Barbarian Warrior and gradually drew closer until he was only five meters away.

The enemy was right in front of him. Nie Yan could clearly see the design and grooves on the Barbarian Warrior’s armour. He could determine all its weak spots, scapula, heart, abdomen, and central spinal column. 

Nie Yan was suddenly struck with an odd thought. Freedom Skills likely had their own hidden meaning. For example, Backbreaker was similar to Backstab, targeting the enemy’s back and inflicting the cripple debuff.

In the past, Nie Yan believed just landing the attack in the right spot—in this case the target’s back—was good enough. However, his completion rate always hovered around 60%, sometimes even going as low as 50%.

“Is there something I’m missing?” Nie Yan muttered.

Staring at the Barbarian Warrior’s back, Nie Yan couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if he incorporated some fighting techniques into the execution of these skills.

Many of the skills in Conviction were pulled from reality. Take the Kick skill for example. If you struck the leg or thigh, the effect would be weak. But if you struck a joint, you could paralyze or temporarily incapacitate the foe.

A few memories surfaced in Nie Yan’s mind. In the previous timeline, back when he was Level 160, he had once fought against a Shadow Dancer. That player didn’t use any fancy or flashy moves, only simple skills like Kick, Backstab, and Assassinate. Yet he suffered a one-sided beating. A single Kick had left his leg numb for five seconds. How was he supposed to fight back?

That Shadow Dancer’s expert kick was quite marvelous. That fellow was wearing boots with blades He didn’t aim for the leg or knees, but rather the hollow spot right below the kneecap. That one kick had disabled Nie Yan.

Recalling this now, that Shadow Dancer had probably employed a fighting technique.

Nie Yan fell into a daze. He had grasped many Shadow Dancer techniques. It could even be said he was already a quasi Shadow Dancer. However, what else was there for him to learn after advancing to one? Why was it that every Shadow Dancer in the previous timeline was so secretive, to the extent that no information could be found on the forums?

This required further research.

Nie Yan gradually drew closer to the Barbarian Warrior. Right now, he had completely forgotten that the other party was a monster. He simply pretended it was a particularly burly player.

If the Barbarian Warrior was a person, what kind of technique would he use to neutralize them as quickly and efficiently as possible?

Nie Yan comprehended something. Lowering his posture, he exerted all the power in his waist and shot forth in a spiral with his dagger in hand.

This was a fighting technique, focusing the power from his kick off and rotational power into his arm. Executing this action, he felt his body heating up, almost as if ants were crawling all over him. As his body spun around chaotically, his arm surged with power.

What the hell!? Nie Yan inwardly cried out in alarm. However, he couldn’t cancel a skill mid-execution.

Nie Yan roared out and plunged his dagger into the Barbarian Warrior’s spinal column.

With a loud bang, a powerful force skewered the Barbarian Warrior, causing it to stagger back several steps before entering a crippled state, unable to move.

Backbreaker: 73% completion, 150% damage, 3 second stun. You have obtained 100 skill proficiency.

Nie Yan didn’t expect to achieve 73% completion, 150% damage, and a 3 second stun. This kind of effect was amazing! He had also gained twice as much skill proficiency than before.

This was the true Backbreaker!

Nie Yan was overjoyed. He had gained a deeper understanding of the skill. In fact, he could probably do even better. This was his first time executing Backbreaker in such a manner, so his movements weren’t particularly smooth. He still needed to practice more.

However, this successful execution of Backbreaker had undoubtedly opened up a new door for Nie Yan. Before him was a completely new world for him to explore.

It turned out that the skills in the game shared common traits with fighting techniques in reality. If he combined the two together, he could creature all new fighting techniques, boosting the killing power of his skills to the peak!

After figuring out the trick to Backbreaker, Nie Yan decided to continue practicing it and raising its skill proficiency. As for Reverse Grip Backstab and the other Freedom Skills, he would take his time figuring them out later. After succeeding the first time, the rest would come easy.

Nie Yan continued evading the Barbarian Warrior with his footwork. A short while later, Backbreaker came off cooldown.

Nie Yan used Counter on the Barbarian Warrior, then quickly retreated.

The Barbarian Warrior let out a furious roar. It charged forward and cleaved down on Nie Yan’s head with its giant axe.

Nie Yan employed the Illusion Steps. Evading the attack, he circled behind. He lowered his posture even further and pushed off from his waist with even greater power. He felt like his movements this time were much smoother as an overwhelming power surged through his arm, With a loud bang, the Barbarian Warrior was directly sent flying face first to the ground.

A crisp system jingle rang out. It appeared Backbreaker had ranked up.

Nie Yan was flabbergasted. Why did Backbreaker rank up so quickly? Looking at the notification, it had advanced to Rank 4. He then checked his completion rate.

Backbreaker: 93% completion, 270% damage, 5 second stun. You have obtained 300 skill proficiency.

Nie Yan was amazed. He had obtained 300 skill proficiency just from using a skill once. This was too frightening. It would take most players more than a day to gain 300 skill proficiency.

Normally, when training skills outside, 60% completion would net 1 skill proficiency, 70% completion would net 2 skill proficiency, and 90% completion would net 6 skill proficiency, However, the amount of skill proficiency gained here was multiplied by 50. That was why Nie Yan received 300 skill proficiency after executing Backbreaker. Such a large amount of skill proficiency instantly raised his Backbreaker to Rank 4.

Backbreaker had a base damage of 120%. With a 93% completion rate, the damage reached 270%. This kind of result left Nie Yan feeling giddy.

In the previous timeline, Nie Yan heard Shadow Dancers could solo Lords above their level. He believed this was nothing more than fantasy. Level 100 and higher Lords were different from the Scaled Frogs he killed. Looking at it now, as long as one learned enough Freedom Skills and achieved a high enough completion rate, the damage dealt could easily pierce through a high level monster’s defenses. Killing a Level 100 or higher Lord above one’s level no longer seemed that ludicrous.

If Nie Yan could raise all five of his Freedom Skills to Rank 6 or 7, he could at least double if not triple his combat strength! Thinking to this point, he couldn’t help but get fired up.

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