The Meaning Behind Royal Road

Weed now knew the first floor of Memphis Hall like his own home. He knew perfectly well where the dangerous Death Knights patrolled, and the best spots to hunt Skeleton Knights.

Being a solo hunter without a party, what Weed dreaded the most was an ambush right when he had low health and mana. For this reason, Weed prepared a few hideouts where he stashed plenty of bandages and herbs.

He had figured out safe spots to rest and places where he could most effectively target his enemies. Bandages and herbs were easily obtained, however the knowledge of the hideouts was priceless. He had selected these locations after countless trial and error. But afterwards, without regrets, he had cleared out those spots.

“It’s here, huh.” After going through the Northern area, Weed finished exploring the entire region.

You have completed Memphis Hall B1 Floor Map for the first time.

Your Fame has increased by 20 (+20 Fame)

When Weed first came to the City of Heaven, he had bought a map. Later the places he traveled to were added to this map. The Map of Memphis Hall’s basement was now an item which could be sold for quite a high price at the General Store or to other users. There was no way he would pass up this opportunity to get easy money.

Weed left Memphis Hall and headed for the Cave of Dead Warriors. It wasn’t a difficult place to find. The moment he descended into the cave, he heard eerie noises.

‘What is this?’ he could sense a light draft and the low growl of something dangerous. Murky darkness filled his vision and the noises were getting louder.

‘I don’t feel so good about this.’

Weed moved cautiously keeping his right hand on his sword just in case something popped up out of the shadows.

‘So I’m not the first one to discover this place. I suppose the people, who first discovered Lavias also discovered this dungeon,’

A short distance away, Weed came upon an undead blocking his path.

“Human! Are you a knight?”

It was a huge, muscular knight with a body much bigger than a Skeleton Knight or a Lizard Man. He had broad shoulders and dangerous looking arms, but above the neck, there was nothing. The missing head was instead carried by his left arm. He was the most unique monster among all the undead – a knight that carried around his own head. It was this head that had spoken.

‘A Dullahan, huh.’
Weed recognized his opponent – an undead around level 140!

“I am not a knight.” Weed replied.
“Then what are you?”
“I am a Sculptor.”

“Scul-Sculptor?”

Incredible disappointment filled the Dullahan’s face. Dullahans loved to improve their skills through combat. They were a type of knight that made the Skeleton Knights pale in comparison.

“You’re a Sculptor? What a disappointment,” the Dullahan mumbled.

Weed was used to being underestimated because of his class. A Sculptor must look so pathetic that even the undead ignored them!

The creator of Royal Road was Unicorn Corporations. There was much controversy when they released the game. It was the first ever virtual reality game. A reality that was 100% based off of fantasy. But why was it named Royal Road?There had been so many names to choose from. Even though Royal Roadreceived worldwide attention, its title was somewhat disappointing. It wasn’t a name that stuck with you when you heard it.

But there was a reason Unicorn Corporation chose the name Royal Road. No one on earth had been able to conquer and rule over every continent and ocean. This game was the road to that great empire. The unified empire that not even Genghis Khan, Napoleon, or Alexander the Great could achieve. The game paved the way for people to achieve that dream.

It was a hope for something never before seen in the history of mankind; an Emperor who would conquer every single continent. It taught people to dream, to hope to be whatever they want to be, and this hope would drive them towards their goal. This was the true meaning behind “Royal Road”.

The first to conquer the entire land would be given prize money: 10% of Unicorn Corporations sales for one month. This was an enormous sum. In Korea alone, millions played the game. Globally, Japan, Europe and America combined; the users amounted to over 100 million. Royal Road cost $300 a month to play. It was difficult to calculate such a huge amount of money. 10% of that would make someone instantly rich.

hat was why most players in Royal Road chose fighting-type classes. Most users chose to advance from Swordsman to Knight, seeing battle-related classes as the fastest path to becoming the Emperor. Blacksmiths and other trade classes were looked down upon. There was no need to even mention Artists, Chefs, or Sculptors who couldn’t even fit in with the trade classes. It was their fate to be belittled and ignored.

‘Just like my own life,’Weed thought.

Without a word, Weed drew his Clay Sword. An icy blue aura emanated from it. The Clay Sword had a special ability to slow down an enemy’s movements upon a direct hit.

“Uurrrg!” The Dullahan charged, swinging his axe fast. Weed raised his Clay Sword, parrying the attacks.
Slam!

Clay Sword’s durability has decreased.

The message was accompanied by the shock of the impact that made Weed’s arms shudder. He had just finished repairing that sword, but this one attack was able to lower its durability. It seemed that the Dullahan’s specialty was his brute strength.

“I can’t lose. Sculpting Blade!” Weed attacked relentlessly.

The two exchanged blows rapidly. Weed, charged with the intent to kill, aimed for the vital points. Battles had to be finished as quickly and simply as possible. That was the only way to minimize the risk of enemy reinforcements showing up.

For Weed, who hunted alone, another Dullahan or monster appearing would mean nothing but trouble. Besides Weed could sculpt as a side job while he rested. This meant that he had to reduce the time spent fighting as much as possible.

Bash! The Dullahan used a skill with his axe swing, pushing Weed back a great distance.

“Devil’s Strike!” The Dullahan roared, initiating a chain attack.

The axe, now launched into the air, and spun violently as it came flying. Although Weed ducked to avoid the blow, his HP dropped by 300 just from the wind pressure.

If he had used the Seven Celestial Footsteps, he could have dodged completely, however he chose to get hit.

The point was to raise his level of Defense while working on his Endurance.

Now it was Weed’s turn.

“Triple!” The first strike missed, while the second, more destructive strike came from the opposite direction. The enemy managed to dodge both attacks, causing Weed to execute a powerful swing from the bottom-up.

By then the throwing axe had boomeranged back to its owner and the Dullahan thrust it forward to block Weed’s third attack. At that instant, Weed’s sword crisscrossed through the Dullahan’s chest, making a total of five consecutive attacks. Triple had evolved as Weed’s mastery of the skill increased.

The Dullahan had somehow blocked the first three attacks, but the next two lowered his HP by more than 20%. He went into a frenzy trying to push Weed back by repeatedly using his Bash ability. But by now Weed had already worked out the skill’s timing, and swiftly carved into the Dullahan’s side.

“Aren’t you dead yet? Sculpting Blade!” Milky white light surrounded Weed’s blade.

Then came the merciless strikes!

The Dullahan’s health points were decreasing rapidly as the strikes sounded.

He tried attacking, but Weed dodged them all.

Weed could anticipate the Dullahan’s skills by watching his footsteps, and then dodge them by moving his upper body. Ultimately, the Dullahan wasn’t a difficult enemy for him. The gap in levels might have been wide, but through jobs and training, Weed was above the Dullahan in terms of stats. Weed’s Endurance stat was at the same level as the Dullahan’s. Thanks to that, he had no disadvantage. Level 80 Skeleton Mages were actually more annoying.

Mages were troublesome to fight because they cast countless curses. When Irene the Priest was there, the curses were easily dispelled, but now Weed could only dispel the curses with potions after the battle was over. Each Curse Dispelling Potion cost three silvers. This sometimes took the profit out of hunting, so Weed hated Skeleton Mages the most.

“Uwwagggh…” Sometime later the Dullahan’s body disappeared in a gray light as his horse neighed shrilly.

“Phew… that was easier than I expected. But one of them can take down 40% of my Health, it would be dangerous if two of them challenged me at once.”

Weed headed to a hidden corner to level his sculpting after he picked up the greaves the Dullahan dropped.

“Let’s try sculpting a Dullahan.”

Weed’s mastery didn’t increase as much by making sculptures he had made before. But making a sculpture for the first time increased Handicraft and Art skills significantly.

Weed took out Zahab’s Sculpting Knife and a piece of wood and started to sculpt the figure of the Dullahan he just saw. He was so used to sculpting now that if he simply pictured it in his mind, he could carve it. The cave was silent save for the echo of Weed’s sculpting.

“It would be great if my Sculpting level would rise to Intermediate…” Weed thought.

His current Sculpting skill was 99% to level 10. He had also made five sculptures of Avians, so he thought it was possible to level up.

“Please let me achieve Intermediate level!”

Weed wished as he finished the Dullahan’s head.

The Dullahan sculpture was complete: A knight with a buff body, menacing eyes and a huge blade.

Ding!

Your Sculpting Skill has reached level 10, Intermediate.
You can now craft using special metals and gemstones (Pearl, diamond, ruby, etc.).

For your class, Moonlight Sculptor, the current skills and stats will be affected:

    – Effect of Sculpting Blade has increased by +50%.
    – Additional effects have been added to Sculpting blade’s skill.
    – Mana cost for Sculpting Blade has been halved.
    – All stats have increased by 10.
    – Your Fame has increased by 20.
    – Art Stat has increased by 20.
    – You have learned Skill: Power Break.

Weed shook with happiness. Words couldn’t describe Weed’s feelings at that moment.

The sadness and loneliness he was made to feel as he learned sculpting!

The humiliation and scorn he had to suffer because of his job as a Sculptor! Weed felt his rage vanish into thin air.

Finally, he had achieved Intermediate level Sculpting.

The job of Sculptor, which he had wanted to quit so badly at first, felt like the job he was destined for.

The Sculpting Blade skill had proven to have the greatest efficiency so far! Every time Weed used Sculpting Blade, his sculpting skill increased ever so slightly and since it was closely tied to Sculpting, the skill was enhanced as his Sculpting advanced to Intermediate.

“Hmm, an additional ability? Information. Skill. Sculpting Blade!”

Sculpting Blade Level 7 (50%): Zahab’s visionary sword skill, carried on by those destined to carve the invisible or intangible.

Defends against magic of lower mastery than Sculpting Blade. When spells are absorbed, the caster only incurs 50% of original mana cost.

Cost: Sustained – 25 mana per second.

Weed could only laugh. For knights, mages were the most difficult opponents. Long-range magic attacks were very hard to dodge. But now Sculpting Blade was able to absorb this magic. Even if the opponent only used half the mana they had, it was hundreds of times better than getting hit.

“Since the mana cost for Sculpting Blade is reduced, maybe I could use it when executing Triple or Backstab.”

Sculpting Blade was more of a buff than an attack. Combining Sculpting Blade with the Imperial Formless Sword Technique would cost an enormous amount of mana, but Weed believed the result would be unparalleled. Besides, there was always Sculpture Destruction.

“Information: Sculpture Destruction!”

Sculpture Destruction: Sculptor’s skill

The anger involved in destroying a self-made sculpture is converted to strength for one day. Art stat will temporarily serve as a battle related stat.Warning: Fame will drop and the corresponding points will be deducted from Art stat.

Destruction of ordinary statue: Art stat x2 and conversion to STR. Art stat -1, Fame -20.
Destruction of fine statue: Art stat x4 and conversion to STR. Art stat – 5, Fame -100.
Destruction of great statue: Art stat x6 and conversion to STR. Art stat -10, Fame -200
Destruction of masterpiece: Art stat x20 and conversion to STR. Art stat -30, Fame -1000.

The amount of Art stat converted to Strength depended on the quality of the sculpture destroyed.

Destroying a normal statue converted double the amount of Art stat into strength or dexterity for a day while destroying a fine or great statue would convert four or six times the Art stat into strength or dexterity.

This would be a commonly used skill for sculptors with low strength. Sculptors who only sculpt statues in the game would have a high Art stat, but it would be hard for them to hunt because of their battle stats. This skill allowed those Sculptors to change their Art stat to other stats but the problem lay in the Fame and Art stat penalty that accompanied its use.

The Art stat was hard to increase, meaning the skill had to be used cautiously. There was such an extreme penalty for destroying a statue that it felt very difficult and unsettling to use the skill.

In other words, the skill was a double-edged sword. Weed decided to stow it away and not use it if he could help it. Temporary strength was not true power. Even without Sculpting Destruction, Weed had become strong once his Sculpting skills reached Intermediate. All his stats had risen by 10 and Sculpting Blade’s power had doubled as well.

Weed wasn’t the only one to enjoy this advantage. Any trade skill such as cooking, tailoring, smithing, fishing, farming, held advantages such as stat, skill or Fame bonuses when