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Chapter 451 - This World Does Not Belong to You

 Royal God Call was indeed quite the lucky lad. He was the first to die to the Shadowmist Assassin after it had become enraged. After that, the Shadowmist Assassin killed four other players. Only then did the monitoring team realize that something was amiss with the BOSS. By the time they reported the matter and came to a decision on how to deal with the situation, a sizeable number of players had already died at the hands of the Shadowmist Assassin, with a good number of them no longer lingering around at the spawn points. For these game employees that were working on the back-end data, it was truly a tall task to sift through the identities of those unknown individuals from all the players that had respawned during that period of time.

However, thanks to Royal God Call's inability to discern directions and find his way in the city's heavy fog, his fear of leaving the spawn point after respawning and losing his way made him stay put, which subsequently allowed his data to be restored.

It was a piece of cake for the employees working on the restoration of the players' data to restore those players that had their data assets locked. As for those who had left the spawn points upon respawning, the monitoring team had limited options for them; following their trail to the spawn points was one such possible solution. It was easy for the employees to pick up Royal God Call and restore him back to the spot he had previously died since he did not leave the spawn point this whole time. Royal God Call was still at a loss on what had just occurred as he stood amid the fog, feeling all alone.

Naturally, the man was elated when he discovered that his level had been restored to its previous state, even recovering the proficiency points he had lost in his skills, equipment durability, and other such figures. He quickly began discussing this matter with everyone over the mercenary channel. In the previous process, Sword Demon, Young Master Han, Brother Assist, and War Without Wounds had all gone their separate ways to make the other players leave the area as soon as possible. The risk of the Shadowmist Assassin targeting them subsequently increased with the departure of the many players and reached a point where the four men did not manage to make a successful getaway. Still, since this had happened in the late stages of the incident, they were also included in the list of players that could be locked down and frozen, so their restoration was far cleaner and faster than Royal God Call's.

At the moment, the mercenary channel was busy discussing the stupid BOSS's configuration, as well as the magnanimity of the game company for compensating the players in such a way.

"Did those players that were killed by the BOSS, which had strayed to Yueye City's gate, receive any sort of recompense?" War Without Wounds remarked.

"Nope," the all-knowing Brother Assist answered.

"The situation back then isn't anything like the present! Back then, the players had low levels, so losing a level isn't that big of a deal compared to us now," Young Master Han said thusly, somewhat maligning the game company. Actually, the game company had not done this countermeasure previously not because the losses were miniscule but because it had happened during the early stages of the beta when they were still inexperienced in handling such matters and the technical conditions were not entirely in place to make any sort of recompense. The many technical methods they had applied for this incident were actually developed and valued accordingly as a result of the previous incident. As such, it could be said that Young Master Han and the rest were living in the good times right now.

During this discussion, Royal God Call finally feebly asked, "Is anyone coming to pick me up?"

"On my way," Gu Fei replied.

"No, my current set of coordinates have changed!" Royal God Call quickly gave them the new batch of numbers.

Everybody was shocked. The coordinates he had provided were not too far from where they were and he was definitely not anywhere within the city.

"Aren't you dead?" they asked.

"I've been restored as well just like you guys!" Royal God Call figured out what had happened to him after digesting their discussion.

"Why did they restore you as well?!" War Without Wounds asked.

"F*ck! I also got killed due to the BOSS becoming enraged!" Royal God Call cussed.

"But you've been dead for such a long time even your corpse entered rigor mortis. This shouldn't happen to you, too!" War Without Wounds continued to scorn him.

The two began to quarrel over the mercenary channel before Young Master Han muted the them since he held the authorization as the group leader.

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By this time, all the other players that could be restored had already been dealt with accordingly, and they soon saw a notice of apology from the system. Furthermore, publicly reporting the application of the remedy worked to inform those remaining players that were affected, but the employees had trouble locating, to take the initiative and contact a GM online. Once their IGNs were made known, the employees working on the back-end data would have a much easier time verifying their experience to be in line for a restoration. In order to prevent other players from fishing in troubled waters, the message severely pointed out that those who would deliberately disrupt this process would be dealt with as if they had tampered with the game's day-to-day operations.

Putting up this notice in the game was naturally not enough. The game officials put up the same notice as the headline topic on the official website's main page the next day, openly admitting to the mistake and calling those involved parties contact them as soon as possible if they had not received their due compensation yet. They even made sure to alleviate the players' worries by promising to conduct a thorough investigation into the BOSS and would return the monster back to the game once the appropriate revisions were made.

The Shadowmist Assassin was not alone in undergoing an investigation, for the senior designer of the R&D Department Ye Xiaowu was also under scrutiny.

This event had unfolded in such an unexpected manner all because the issue with the Shadowmist Assassin's extremely stupid aggro formula was something he had not expected. Had this not been the case, Ye Xiaowu would have long since fixed the configuration of the BOSS, instead. Why would he wait until today?

Even the wisest man made mistakes. This was a saying that Ye Xiaowu was experiencing in person right now. He had originally designed the BOSS to be punishingly difficult for the players, but it brought him such a large trouble as a designer, instead. Even worse was the fact that his utilization of the modification tool to change the game configuration had been swiftly unearthed.

When investigating how the BOSS got enraged this time, they naturally touched upon the condition that would cause it to enrage. Had this been under normal circumstances, Ye Xiaowu's private use of the tool would have been ignored, but the situation was different this time. The entire monitoring team by the Game Administration Department had personally witnessed the BOSS enrage, and what they witnessed was far from what the condition had stated.

Was it a program error or something else?

Following their investigations along this trail, they quickly found a log entry of an alteration made using the modification tool. Ye Xiaowu did not wait for them to discover him as the culprit and simply stepped forth, admitting his actions.

"Why?" Everybody was surprised as they stared at him. They knew that Ye Xiaowu often called himself a 'scrupulous game employee', so nobody had expected him to be the one that transgressed this first violation.

Ye Xiaowu appeared calm. "I simply don't wish for the BUG in Parallel World to further impact it."

"A BUG that further impacts the game?" Everybody was confused. "Were you trying to verify the BUG that is present in the Shadowmist Assassin's existence?"

"The BUG I'm referring to isn't the Shadowmist Assassin." Ye Xiaowu pointed at the scene being shown on a certain computer screen; it was a replay of the enraged Shadowmist Assassin fighting with Gu Fei and Eternal Dominion. "I meant those guys."

"Them?" Everyone turned to gaze at the screen.

"Can't you guys tell? They're players possessing far more expertise at fighting than the average player. Their existence hugely undermines the equilibrium of this game. Two level 40 players working together have actually slain a level 60 enraged BOSS. In which MMO have you seen this sort of matter occur before?" Ye Xiaowu asked.

Everybody was silent. What he had said was not entirely illogical, for the skill that these two players had demonstrated was truly rather excessive.

"You guys have also seen the BOSS's drops. Shadowmist Assault is a level 60 and above Assassin Skill. With a player potentially having it in his or her possession, what's the point of playing this game further?" he continued.

Everybody remained silent.

"The aggro formula for the Shadowmist Assassin might indeed be problematic, and I am held accountable for instigating this terrible incident, a dereliction of duty our part as game designers. However, with such a BUG like these sort of players existing, I insist that we must find some way to stop them. Even if we cannot forcefully restrict them from gaming, we must not allow them to have free reign within the game. The other players need a fair environment," Ye Xiaowu said.

Nobody made a sound, and only the team leader of the monitoring team that patted Xiaowu on his back, "The boss is calling for you."

This boss was also the biggest boss of Parallel World. While Ye Xiaowu had no real power, he held the position as a senior designer of the game. Now that he was the one causing trouble, none of the people present had the authority to deal with him. Thus, their only option was to report this to the higher-ups, which resulted in the boss calling to have Ye Xiaowu sent over.

Ye Xiaowu obstinately held his own view of the matter, not showing any signs of fear as he walked out of the monitoring office to meet with the boss, leaving behind a crowd of whispers.

Ye Xiaowu was considered to be the core of the Parallel World's design, so it could be said that Parallel World would not be able to exist without him, and was someone who had sweated and toiled to contribute towards its creation. While he might have committed a huge foul that was a fireable offense to the company, everybody believed that this issue would most likely result in a slap on the wrist and eventually swept under the rug. Furthermore, Ye Xiaowu's actions were not done out of self-interest or personal gain, and quite a few people agreed with what he had just said. Everybody felt that there was no need for this matter to be so severely investigated.

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The boss's office.

Behind a broad office desk, the boss was standing with both his hands behind his back as he waited for Ye Xiaowu to arrive. When he heard the knock on the door, he called out for the man to enter and turned round before taking a seat on his chair.

The boss looked gloomy, while Ye Xiaowu continued to hold that stubborn expression of his.

Ye Xiaowu had been holding onto his thoughts on how to suppress or even eliminate this BUG that was Gu Fei for the longest time, never once expressing it in full to anyone else. Today's incident could be said to be the fuse that lit this matter within him. From the point when he had used the modification tool, he had already involuntarily made the decision to walk down this 'all or nothing' road. He had already swore to eliminate this BUG once and for all.

"I don't think there's any need for me to ask for the reason?" the boss said.

Ye Xiaowu nodded, "You already know about this, this sort of people-"

"I know," the boss had directly interrupted Ye Xiaowu's words. "The existence of this sort of people in an MMO is game-breaking. I already knew this as you've already told me this before. I also mentioned that there should be some sort of solution to the matter, but it was definitely not through utilizing the method you just did."

The tone this boss had taken was unexpectedly severe, which Ye Xiaowu found rather surprising. He had discussed this matter of such BUG players with the boss before, and he knew that the boss was rather concerned about this. However, he never would have thought that his illegal manipulation to restrict such players from making further advancement would anger the boss so much, causing the man to treat him so indiscriminately.

"But-"

"There's no buts," Ye Xiaowu's words were once ruthlessly interrupted. "I can understand making a mistake in your work like an unreasonable BOSS configuration. That is forgivable. However, there's no way I would condone your action of using the modification tool in such a manner."

"Are we just allowing them to continue on like this?" Ye Xiaowu was unyielding as ever.

"Letting them carry on as they were would at least be better than what you are currently doing," the boss said. "This imbalance born from individuals themselves is an age-old problem. If you use such methods to deal with skilled players, what of those pay-to-win gamers? Surely, you're aware of the power that real money has in a game; do we consider rich people as another form of imbalance, too?"

Ye Xiaowu was suddenly stumped. Sure enough, he had never once considered whether pay-to-win gamers were a form of imbalance themselves or not.

"We can design the perfect game on our end to try shortening the gap between such players and the average players, but we definitely don't have the authority to create special regulations for them. A MMO needs a uniform standard as well. Go back home and think about this carefully before coming back to see me," the boss ordered.

Ye Xiaowu was in a daze as he turned round. Before he left the room, he could still hear the boss's last few words. "You may have created this world, but this world has never belonged to you!"