"Still not scared?" Ye Xiu asked Yu Wenzhou as they shook hands.
"Why should we be?" Huang Shaotian interrupted. He looked to be in high spirits, as if the loss hadn't affected him at all.
"Why do you always have to butt in!" Ye Xiu looked helplessly at Huang Shaotian as he came to shake his hand.
"You're about to experience our might very soon," Huang Shaotian said.
"How come I didn't see any of it a minute ago?" Su Mucheng replied to Huang Shaotian's remark with a sly smile, as she came up to shake his hand. Her words held a lot of weight considering she had just beaten Huang Shaotian in the group arena, even if they hadn't started the fight with the same amount of health.
"Looks like the time for me to take revenge is already here!" Huang Shaotian sighed.
"Isn't it usually like this for you guys? So sensitive. You must take revenge pretty frequently, huh." Fang Rui shook Huang Shaotian's hand.
"What's this? A round robin?" Huang Shaotian said angrily. The guys from Happy were targeting him one after the other! His fellow teammates were laughing on the side. They seemed to have no intentions of helping him in this verbal war.
"You're so violent! You were like that when we were setting dungeon records together too. No wonder you're a Leo." Steamed Bun was Happy's fourth player. When he had been setting dungeon records with the rest of the crew, he had no clue what the pro scene was, so he didn't know how incredible of a background that Flowing Tree had. After hearing his teammates talk about it, he finally understood. When he shook hands with Huang Shaotian, he even connected his remark with feelings from the past, causing the others from Blue Rain to raise their eyebrows.
Setting dungeon records? When did that happen? Huang Shaotian's teammates looked at him with suspicion.
"Fuck, you bastard. Wait for me, I'll kill you soon!" Huang Shaotian said.
"Then you'll have to kill me first," Happy's fifth player was their healer An Wenyi. His words were too fitting. If the healer didn't die, it wouldn't easy to kill off a player.
"Even if dies, there's still me!" This time, Huang Shaotian didn't even have time to give a reply when Happy's sixth player followed up. It was Tang Rou, the girl who loved to play fast and aggressive.
"Fuck you guys!" There was no one after Tang Rou. By the time Huang Shaotian responded, Happy's six players were already on their way out. Blue Rain's other players were laughing themselves silly.
"Even I wouldn't be able to bear it if I were in your position, Huang Shao!" His normally unenthusiastic teammate Zheng Xuan added insult to injury.
Huang Shaotian ground his teeth.
"Let's get ready!" Yu Wenzhou chuckled. He had been watching but didn't say anything. He knew they were just joking around. Huang Shaotian wouldn't actually get irritated from this. In the trash talking world, Huang Shaotian would often shoot himself in the foot, but he would never let it affect his playing. Even if he did act out, it was because he could do it in the passing. When he chose opportunities, he always decided based off what was most appropriate.
"I look forward to your performance!" Just as Team Blue Rain was about to leave, Ye Xiu made one last yell from the side. Huang Shaotian turned around and gave him the middle finger.
The two teams went into their respective player booths. The match soon began and the characters loaded into the map.
Map: Gusty Garden.
This was a comprehensive map shaped like a rhombus. There were a total of nine wind sources spreadly evenly across the map. The wind sources would randomly generate different types of wind, e.g. whirlwinds, gales, icy winds, etc., which would affect characters in different ways and could potentially tip the scales in a battle.
Maps with auxiliary features were more fun for players, but added complexity and difficult for pro players. The maps chosen by home teams usually practiced unique strategies unuseable in other maps, making it more difficult for the away teams to adjust.
Pan Lin and Li Yibo gave a brief analysis going over the features of Gusty Garden. The two teams spawned at the usual northern and southern ends of the map. Happy was on the southern end, while Blue Rain was on the northern end. Team Blue Rain immediately set out, as for Happy? The away team was clearly much more hesitant.
"Blue Rain obviously knows the map well, but Happy doesn't. The first thing they need to do is figure out the positions of the nine wind sources. If I remember correctly, Gusty Garden should be a map released last year. Even if Ye Xiu has seen a lot of things, he probably doesn't have any in this map," Li Yibo said.
"Blue Rain might have chosen this map to get around Ye Xiu's terrifying knowledge of the game," Pan Lin said.
"Yes, although Blue Rain lost the group arena, they still fully utilized their map advantage. I'm sure they came prepared with this map as well." Li Yibo said.
"Blue Rain is taking the central path. Huang Shaotian's Troubling Rain is still with the team. He's not moving as a lone unit. Happy is moving towards the northeast. It looks like they're trying to find the wind sources," Pan Lin said.
As he said these words, the big screen showed a zoomed out map, indicating the location of the nine wind sources. Then, they added in Team Happy's position.
"Team Happy seems to be moving... very deliberately!" Pan Lin remarked, seeing their movements.
"It's as if they know the locations of the nine wind sources. It's not too surprising. Happy may have looked over it briefly before and noted the key features," Li Yibo said.
"Happy can't also be familiar with this map, can they?" Pan Lin said.
"This..." Li Yibo wasn't sure. If Blue Rain decided to choose this map, they must have known that Happy hadn't used it before. Could this map have been a map that Happy had once planned on using before? The chance of such a coincidence was extremely low. If it really was the case, then Blue Rain was truly unlucky.
All of Team Happy pushed forward. Not long afterwards, they heard a huge gust of wind up ahead. After the projection technology ascertained the region, the only sound that could be heard was the the sounds of wind.
But despite the loud winds, the characters barely seemed to be affected.
This was one of the nine types of winds, loud wind. The effect was sound. In this environment, trying to use sound to make a decision was impossible.
Since the teams were far from each other, Happy wasn't worried about the effects of the loud wind. They just seemed to be taking a stroll through the region, though they had changed to a different direction.
From their movements, it was certain that Happy knew exactly where the wind sources were. Now, what they needed to do was figure out what each wind source did because that was random. Blue Rain was the same. At first, they went straight for the center, but not to look for the opponents. They were going towards a wind source too. After figuring out what type of wind that source produced, they immediately headed for a different location.
Both sides had the same goal. Their paths were different, but both teams picked the most efficient routes from their starting points.
Pan Lin and Li Yibo had found quite a bit of information by now. Any player could figure out the most efficient route from the starting points. Happy and Blue Rain weren't doing anything new and went with the most practical path.
It's just that if these two continued along their routes...
After figuring out their routes from their starting points, they could see that once both sides found four wind sources, they would meet in the center.
The progress of the match seemed to be heading towards this direction.
After Blue Rain went through the south, southwest, west, and northwest wind sources, they headed for the center. After Happy went through the north east, east, southeast, and south, they headed for the center too.
Because both teams knew the exact locations of the wind sources, as soon as they entered a new region, they would immediately head towards a different one.
"The two teams should have expected this might happen, right?" Pan Lin guessed. Since the teams were using a popular route, they should anticipate that the other team might do the same, no?
Just when Pan Lin said these words, Team Blue Rain made a change. As they approached the wind source in the center, they gradually moved into an attack and defense formation. Happy also made a similar adjustment. From Happy's formation, it could be seen that they knew where Blue Rain was coming from.
"Although both teams have reached this far, the two teams might not meet," Li Yibo suddenly said.
"From their route, it looks as if they're checking the locations of the wind sources, but in reality, they're not actually going to the wind source itself. Once they reach the edges of the wind region and figure out what type of wind is there, they head towards a different region. That's why Happy is going towards the center from the south. It's faster. After finding out what this region's wind is, they'll likely head towards the southwest."
"Oh oh..." Pan Lin thought for some time before understanding Li Yibo's words.
"But there could also be a change because of the wind in the central region," Li Yibo said.
"Oh?" Pan Lin stared blankly for a bit.
At this moment, both teams had scouted out four wind sources with five unknown. However, the viewers had the results from both teams, so they had knowledge of seven of them total. They could deduce the possible winds in the central region by process of elimination. Li Yibo probably guessed what changes there might be based on these two possibilities.
By the time, the two teams had scouted out the wind in the center.
Of the nine types of wind, gale was the strongest wind. The characters moving headwind would feel a resistance in their movements, while the characters moving tailwind would feel a pushing force.
From their current positions, Blue Rain was moving tailwind.
Use the wind!
Team Blue Rain didn't change directions and charged straight into the wind. Taking advantage of the wind, they moved at a speed otherwise impossible under normal conditions.