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Chapter 665 - New Discovery
The Stoneclaw Mountains' outermost region:
Due to the Star Alliance's advertising, the stream of players rushing towards the Stoneclaw Mountains increased by the minute. Even experts from the surrounding kingdoms and the Black Dragon Empire arrived in droves. Although there was a minimum level requirement of 30 to enter the Regional Dungeon, easily more than 50,000 players had pushed into the Stoneclaw Mountains thus far. Moreover, as time pa.s.sed, this number would continue to increase.
"Boss Red, there's a Half-orc settlement ahead of us. The settlement houses over 300 Elite Half-orcs and over 20 Special Elites. There are also four Wolfman Chieftains and one Wolfman Lord."
"A settlement?" Red Feather smiled. "Excellent! Notify Willow's team immediately. If we combined our strength, we should be able to take down the settlement."
Although the Stoneclaw Mountains were a treasured land, that did not mean that players could obtain Magic Crystals and equipment easily.
After experimenting for some time, the various large Guilds had discovered certain patterns.
Compared to monsters in settlements, the Dungeon's roaming monsters were far less profitable. The difference in drop-rate for Magic Crystals was particularly ma.s.sive.
Often enough, the harvest one could obtain after taking down a single monster settlement could top even an entire day's worth of income for a 100-man team.
However, settlements were extremely rare. Moreover, even a 100-man team would find it very difficult to take down a settlement. Normally, when a team managed to discover a settlement, they could only circle and watch. However, the Star Alliance did not need to waste their time.
"Boss Red, my equipment had already reached the red caution line. I doubt the remaining Durability will last me through a big battle," a Shield Warrior spoke up after seeing the warning sign beside his equipment's Durability.
The Stoneclaw Mountains' terrain was complex. Not only were there a large number of monsters here, but the monsters were also quite powerful individually. If a team were too large, not only would they monsters discover them easily, but they would also set off a chain reaction, making it harder for the team to survive.
Ever since the battle for Stone Forest Town, the Star Alliance's overall strength had decreased significantly. Fortunately, their top combatants had not received any damage, so the Guild's loss did not affect their progression in 100-man Team Dungeons and the Stoneclaw Mountains.
However, the Half-orcs in the Stoneclaw Mountains were very powerful. Their Armor Break ability had caused players ma.s.sive headaches. Equipment that normally lasted for a long time would drop to a critical Durability after only a dozen or so battles. If an item's Durability reached zero, repairing it would no longer be possible. At that time, it could only be disa.s.sembled for its raw materials.
In truth, it wasn't just the lead MT's equipment that had reached a critical point. The equipment of the other MTs and melee players in Red Feather's team had also reached a critical level.
Weapons and equipment were different. One could recover a weapon's Durability through Advanced Whetstones. However, there were no items available that could recover equipment's Durability. Players could only bring their equipment to a smithy for repairs. This was also why players did not normally pay much attention to their equipment.
During battle, players would typically attack and defend with their weapons. Very rarely would their equipment receive a blow. Hence, their equipment's Durability decreased slowly.
However, the monsters in the Stoneclaw Mountains were different. Their Armor Break ability already made them fairly powerful, but they also possessed relatively high intelligence. They would often find opportunities to strike at a player's vital points, quickly decreasing their equipment's Durability.
"What about your backup equipment?" Red Feather frowned slightly.
"I've used it already. This is my final set." The Shield Warrior was also quite frustrated.
After entering the Stoneclaw Mountains, the various large Guilds quickly discovered that the Dungeon exhausted their equipment's Durability. It was especially true for the MTs. Hence, they had specifically prepared multiple sets of equipment in advance to replace their equipment when needed. However, after one day of grinding, they had exhausted their backup equipment.
"d.a.m.n it. A round trip will take us an entire day. If we wait, some other team will s.n.a.t.c.h this settlement," Red Feather growled with frustration. He then asked, "What about the party that was sent to replace our equipment?"
Everyone knew how much trouble it was to go back and forth to the Stoneclaw Mountains. Hence, the various large Guilds had arranged parties to deliver replacement equipment for their teams to save time.
"Boss, I just asked, and the supply party says that it'll take them another eight hours or so to reach the Dungeon's entrance."
"Eight hours?" Red Feather doubted that this settlement would remain undiscovered for another eight hours. At this point, the number of teams that came to grind for Magic Crystals continuously increased. Although the Star Alliance had the home ground advantage, it was only slightly stronger than the first-rate Guilds of the surrounding kingdoms and empires. Not to mention, even the super-first-rate Guild, the Dragon-Phoenix Pavilion, had joined the party. "We'll retreat and meet up with the supply party. Have Willow's team watch over this Half-orc settlement. We must not let someone else obtain it."
Saying so, Red Feather prepared his team to leave the Stoneclaw Mountains.
Since the lead MT's equipment was already in the red, it would not be wise to engage in battle. And since they could not partic.i.p.ate in fights, their best option was to meet up with the supply party.
At the same time, the various teams around the Stoneclaw Mountains struggled with the same headache.
If they used Level 30 Mysterious-Iron and Secret-Silver Equipment, they could replace the items as often as they wanted to. However, the monsters in the Stoneclaw Mountains were just too powerful and numerous. Without Level 30 Fine-Gold or above equipment, they would not last long. If they used Secret-Silver Equipment, the equipment could become sc.r.a.p at any given moment. Yet, Level 30 Fine-Gold or above equipment was simply too rare. The various large Guilds could only secure a limited stock. Hence, each team possessed very little backup equipment.
Most teams were usually forced to rest after grinding for half a day, only to resume after their supply parties arrived.
Meanwhile, in Stone Forest Town…
The town, which had been heavily guarded and had refused entrance to outsiders, suddenly removed the ban.
"Huh? The guards that usually patrol the town's perimeter gone."
"Hey, look over there! Independent players are entering and leaving Stone Forest Town."
The various Guilds' supply parties quickly discovered the change.
Unable to help their curiosity, some of these players approached the town.
Originally, Stone Forest Town had not possessed a tall exterior wall. Ever since the town fell into Zero Wing's control, the Adventurer's a.s.sociation had automatically built one for the town, making it difficult for players to investigate the situation inside.
"Wah, Zero Wing's Guild Residence is huge!"
"Isn't that the Candlelight Trading Firm? It's in operation already?"
"There's a hotel over there!"
"Quick, look! There's a smithy!"
The players who entered the town were immediately mesmerized. Just a few days ago, Stone Forest Town had been a pile of ruins, yet the town had become brand-new and offered far more than it had previously.
"c.r.a.p, I need to notify the Guild!"
"Zero Wing is amazing! It's only been a few days, and already, they have a smithy and hotel."
Compared to the majestic Guild Residence and Trading Firm, the players that entered Stone Forest Town paid more attention to the two facilities that could repair their equipment and allow them to recover their Stamina and Concentration.
Very quickly, news about Stone Forest Town spread to every team in the Stoneclaw Mountains, shocking the various Guilds.
After Shi Feng had obtained the Town Token, the Guilds had launched an extensive investigation on the town's construction. However, they were immediately flabbergasted. n.o.body could have imagined that constructing a town was actually so expensive.
The initial investment alone required cost over 10,000 Gold. If one wanted the town to operate properly, they would have to spend even more money.
Most likely, even though Zero Wing was very wealthy, it would be a long time before the Guild could operate Stone Forest Town. None of the Guild would have ever imagined that Zero Wing could get the job done in just a few days…