Chapter 5. A class you can play alone (3)
Warlord has many classes to choose from.
To elaborate, players of the same class could form highly individualistic characters depending on the skill tree and stat distribution.
Even so, there were popular classes and unpopular classes. It was a matter of fact for RPG games.
In Warlord, necromancer was an unpopular class.
The class itself wasn’t bad. They could apply curses, summon undead monsters and golems, and use attack spells like other magicians. They could even modify their own body and increase their combat strength. In a way, it was the ultimate all-around class.
The problem was that it was near impossible to simultaneously acquire high-ranking skills in all these aspects.
Warlord had a skill tree system. To obtain a high-rank skill, one needs a high-rank skill book and its low-rank skill to achieve a certain rank. There were many ways to raise a skill’s rank, but the most common way was to use it repeatedly.
Naturally, to obtain skills of different variety, one had to use lower-rank skills of different variety. If a player took his time doing so as a hobby, it wouldn’t be impossible.
But because players needed to show results quicker than their competitors, most opted for efficiency rather than enjoyment. As such, it made sense that the necromancer class would be unpopular. It was also the reason Starters didn’t give much thought to necromancers. If they became necromancers, they could enjoy the game, but they wouldn’t be able to surpass their competitors.
In addition, necromancers weren’t all that useful in the main content of Warlord – raids. Standard magicians could cover most of what necromancers could do. They had stronger attack spells than necromancers. Curse magic is a type of debuff magic, but it isn’t the only debuff magic.
Most importantly, necromancers could only use a single attribute magic. This penalty was huge for rankers that had to kill higher level monsters. Players could deal more than two times the damage depending on the attribute compatibility, but necromancers didn’t have such advantage.
Summoning magic was even more complicated. First, they required a lot of money. Necromancers summoned using cores that were made using materials dropped from monsters. There were other ways to summon, but cores made summons far more powerful. Unfortunately, these cores were expensive. Top level players typically spent several million wons for a single item, and cores costed about the same amount. It would be fine for one or two summons, but some necromancers controlled close to 100 summons.
This was fine if it was one big investment, but necromancers had to change their cores as they leveled up.
There was another problem. Summons were unappealing. Moving skeletons gave off a totally different feeling in the virtual world than on PC screens. If the summons were ghouls or zombies… it was simply too disgusting. A very small minority might enjoy something like it, but even they wouldn’t admit that it’s a normal hobby.
Even so, there was one player that reached the top 100 rankings as a necromancer.
His username was Himala, and his nickname, Rich Lich.
As one can expect, he was extremely rich in real life.
His real name was Subrata Duta. He was a 33 year old multi-millionaire, who struck rich with a single app. His hobby was gaming, and he was the type of pervert that enjoyed crushing others through money.
Sadly, his money didn’t help him in Warlord. He had no talent for VR games. Even if he equipped himself with the best items, he was just food to PKers who wanted his item. It was no different than a beginner driving a Lamborghini. In fact, because he had good items, he was often PKed by other players.
At one point, he gave up going into battle himself. He became a necromancer and made his summons battle. It didn’t matter to him how much money it cost.
When he successfully solo killed Queen Blaze Ant, a level 250 elite monster, people started seeing necromancers in a different light. This was also when he was given the nickname Rich Lich.
But necromancers never became popular. They required the biggest investment of all the available classes and were difficult to raise. Plus, when players started to reevaluate the necromancer class, Warlord’s raid system was close to being perfected without necromancers. It was out of the question for top ranking players to give up their characters and restart as necromancers. They weren’t willing to change their raid strategies for the sake of necromancers either.
This was why An Jaehyun was conflicted.
Want to do everything alone?
Then the necromancer class was the answer. Necromancers weren’t weak in battle either. They could make themselves into the undead and modify their own bodies. Their combat power wasn’t particularly higher than that of other classes, but An Jaehyun was always able to win against rankers with better equipment and higher stats. He just had to meet certain standards.
Money was a problem, but if he monopolized the profit from killing monsters, it wasn’t impossible. He could earn as much as he used.
He had only one concern.
‘It’s possible… but if I fail, I’m done for.’
It was the possibility of failure.
There was enough information about necromancers, but if his plans failed and he couldn’t achieve the results he desired, he would be in dire straits.
He didn’t think he could return to the past again.
If he failed, he had to change his mind. He had to throw away his pride, borrow a dog’s, and bark under someone’s legs.
If he failed, it was over.
But what if he succeeded?
What if he could really do everything by himself as a necromancer?
He would be able to place everyone under his feet. That was the case with Rich Lich. He fought with entire guilds alone. He couldn’t fight the Top 30 Guilds, but he was able to crush ordinary guilds by himself. In a simple 1v1, only a handful of rankers were able to beat him.
Rich Lich’s battle skills were atrocious, but what if he had An Jaehyun’s battle skills? He might have changed Warlord’s history.
‘Yeah, I have to change history.’
An Jaehyun had no use for the history he knew. What he wanted was a new history centered around himself.
Most importantly, An Jaehyun was confident. That if he became famous enough, the Top 30 Guilds would try to eliminate him again. He knew that if anyone threatened them, those fat pigs turned into boars and charged at their target.
An Jaehyun had to fight against them.
In a way, this was most important to him.
He made his decision.
“Time to go borrow some money.”
An Jaehyun’s first contact with Warlord was through a workshop part-time job. Warlord was a game for the rich. Many didn’t have the time or were too lazy to farm for levels, skills, or items. Of course, if they could pay for them, they would happily do so.
Workshops were created for this reason, and part-time workers were hired. Since one couldn’t use bots like in PC games, one could only hire actual people.
An Jaehyun found his talent in this part-time job. He saved up money and started Warlord about three months after.
Of course, An Jaehyun now had no intention of wasting three months.
The solution to his money problem was private loans.
Private loans weren’t illegal, but as one might expect, people who deal with money think in strange ways.
Used V-Gears sold for a high price. As long as it worked, it would sell for 80% of the original cost. So private loaners often lent money with V-Gears as conditions. That way, they wouldn’t lose too much money.
People who borrowed money to buy V-Gears were those looking for a way to earn money. No one borrowed money just so they could enjoy playing VR games. As for the remaining money they owned, it could be paid back as referral fees to workshops.
This was called the V-Gear loan.
When An Jaehyun was working part-time in workshops, he saw many who couldn’t pay back their V-Gear loan and came to work in workshops. As much as he worked for these people, he knew where to find them.
As a result, An Jaehyun found himself drinking coffee in a private loan company an hour after he made his decision.
“You’re here to borrow money to buy a V-Gear, correct?”
At An Jaehyun’s response, the loaner, Park Wuyoung, glanced over him from head to toe.
‘He doesn’t look like anyone special.’
To Park Wuyoung, it was important to know how to categorize their customers.
Even if they could get back most of their money, a loss was still a loss. At the same time, there were other things to watch out for.
How much money could he rip off apart from the amount he lent? Customers who paid back the amount they owed were good, but even better customers were those who could never pay back the amount they owed and only paid back the interest.
To the loaner’s eyes, An Jaehyun was the latter.
He looked like a nobody. With all the news of money in Warlord, there were more people of this sort every day. They were the type to think they could become heroes, like the people they saw on Warlord videos. They were the type to think they may have talent in gaming.
Many of them were especially those running away from reality.
To Park Wuyoung, An Jaehyun was exactly that type.
‘Well, there’s no reason not to.’
Of course, there was no reason for Park Wuyoung to let the man in front of him borrow. He could easily get his money back.
“Alright, but understand that the interest is high. It will be 29.9%.”
To Park Wuyoung, it was laughable.
Park Wuyoung was certain. In 3 months, after his free trial period was over, An Jaehyun will come running back to him. With no way to pay back the money he owed, he will cry his eyes out as he begs on his feet.
“How much are you looking to borrow?”
Knowing this, Park Wuyoung smiled on the outside, but sneered inside.
An Jaehyun calmly replied to Park Wuyoung’s smile.
“10 million won.”
It was higher than he had expected. He knew 7 million was enough to buy a V-Gear and play Warlord for 3 months.
But he’s borrowing 3 million more?
To Park Wuyoung’s surprise, An Jaehyun kept his calm and replied,
“If I can’t pay it back, introduce me to a workshop. Even if I have to work like a dog, I’ll pay you back.”
Park Wuyoung couldn’t answer for a moment.
At Park Wuyoung’s silence, An Jaehyun snapped his finger twice.
“Excuse me, but I’m a bit busy right now. Can I get the money or not?”
An Jaehyun knew the man thought nothing of him. He was used to the way the man looked at him. Although he didn’t feel good, he could care less about it at the moment.
So An Jaehyun let his displeasure show on his face, but still asked with a calm voice.
In response, Park Wuyoung fixed his attitude.
“We can, of course, but you will also have to put in your one-room deposit as guarantee.”
“Done. Alright, let’s hurry up.”
Before Park Wuyoung had the chance, An Jaehyun grabbed the contract on top of the table and started reading it like it was his. Then, without listening to any explanations, he filled in the blank space with the amount he wanted, then stamped it with his legal seal.
Afterwards, he turned the contract around and handed it back to Park Wuyoung, saying,