“Oi oi oi, a dragon?”
A male player with a thick beard, Tetsuya, the clan leader of [Corporate Slave Special Force], muttered this when he saw a blue dragon soaring in the sky, or more accurately, jumping up into the sky.
“I’ve never seen one before in this game.”
“I’ve seen wyverns, though. Tecchan, are you okay? You’re shaking.”
The girl next to Tetsuya, teasing him, laughed as she leaned against a huge shield that didn’t fit her young body.
The girl’s name is Noel. She was also a tank player who belonged to the same clan as Tetsuya.
“I can’t afford to be. I’m a tank, after all. It’s my job to be in front of the attackers.”
“That’s what I’m supposed to do, too.”
Noel shrugs her shoulders at Tetsuya’s bravado, despite knowing that he is being teased.
When she looked up at the sky, all she could see was the figure of a giant dragon descending gently.
Noel, thinking that she would not be attacked right away, instructed the third clan member behind her.
“Ryu-chan, go to Rinne-san’s place. It’ll be safer than behind us.”
The female player called Ryu-chan responded to Noel’s instructions and immediately ran towards where Rinne and Sukuna were.
“Well, now that Drago and Rinne are here, I’m sure half-hearted hate management is not going to work.”
Tetsuya said this as he cracked his neck to relax his body.
The two aces in the back have been his friends since before Tetsuya created his own clan, and they were also comrades who defeated named boss monsters together.
Therefore, Tetsuya has a rough idea of how much firepower the hidden inside two girls behind him. Knowing this, Noel also nodded her head and smiled wryly.
“They’re both extremely powerful, you know. Especially Drago, who has that weapon.”
Blue-bladed greatsword sheathed on Drago’s back. It is made of the same material as Rinne’s [blue jade staff], so the blue color it was emitting is similar.
However, it contains the [Soul] of Named. Even if the appearance was similar, Drago’s greatsword was far superior as a weapon.
Most importantly, Drago herself has tuned up her own status to wield the greatsword with the greatest efficiency, just to match her weapon’s performance.
That’s why… while it might sound like it was exaggerated, there’s no doubt that Drago possesses the greatest sustained damage in the field right now.
And high firepower simply means that she will easily gather the hate of monsters.
Monster hate can be collected mainly by using provoke arts in conjunction with active actions such as attacking, buffing, healing, and using items.
Monster hate value is set separately for each player, and the rule of thumb is they will most likely target the player with the highest hate value.
Therefore, the tanks must first increase their hate value so that the monsters will always target them. This allows other players to attack as they please without worrying about counterattacks from the monster.
This is what we call hate management, but of course, if you gain more hate than the tank, the monster’s target will be switched to you.
Although it is the tank’s role to manage hate, it is actually a factor that all players need to be aware of.
As such, the presence of players like Drago and Rinne with their outstanding firepower was definitely a concern.
“But we don’t know how much value is packed into those five bars of Boss HP, so we need the firepower of those two.”
“That’s also because we don’t even have enough people, you know. However, there are three tanks and two healers this time. There’s also a buffer, even if it’s only one, and the rest might change depending on the situation in the field, though it’s only barely, we still managed to reach a minimum balance for a good party.”
“At worst, we could end up with 30 full attackers, and I’m rather glad we did not.”
“I don’t have a lot of experience with the Round Table, but I do know this Shuya guy. I’m sure he will adjust pretty well with the rest of the team. And the dragon’s fangs should have no problem at all. That left those two stray players…”
“Her name is Sukuna. She looks pretty relaxed, but I wonder what she’s thinking.”
Because Rinne proclaimed that she is her best friend had made Sukuna a hot topic in her early days, but it didn’t stop there. It turned out that she was also someone with great player skills who had accomplished the feat of defeating Named alone on her second day of playing WLO.
Along with Yosei(fairy/sprite), Kijin is a rather difficult race to use, and as a result, she is a player that quite stood out because she managed to master it. That itself is something worth talking about.
Today, she seemed to be wearing a gauntlet instead of her trademark club.
That Sukuna must have something planned on her mind. Her gaze remained fixed on the slowly descending giant dragon, and she remained motionless.
It wasn’t that she wasn’t motivated, but she just didn’t seem to be in the right state of mind. Tetsuya thought that seeing her in the video and seeing her in person gave a completely different impression.
Well, as long as you’re not an idiot, you probably won’t overextend yourself, and you can just call out to us when you’re in trouble. I’ve still got Rinne behind me, after all. It’s a bit of a pain in the ass for my class, but having her behind to give orders should help stabilize things.”
“That’s right. In any case, this is where we can show off our skills.”
“It’s not my intention to show off my skills. Anyway… it’s time to cut our chat.”
The two, who have a casual conversation, turned their attention to the giant dragon that has landed on the ground accompanied by the sound of a great fall.
With its limbs planted on the ground, it does look like a dragon, but not a typical flying dragon. It’s more like an earth dragon. Its wings could be used to assist in leaping and to reduce the speed of descent, but they were too small and unreliable to support its well-developed and huge body.
On the other hand, its limbs were so strong that they were naturally covered with hard armor-like shells and scales.
Its claws and fangs looked like weapons, and the earth is gouged just by having it standing on them.
It was not hard to imagine that if someone were to take a hit from it, their torso would be cut into rings and they would die instantly.
The Great Dragon – Ars Nova, took a deep breath.
The two tanks held their shields in anticipation of the breath, but then it aimed its roar at the sky.
The opening salvo of the war began with its deafening roar.
It was so loud that they wanted to cover their ears, but there was no damage and no binding effect were applied from it.
While there are some monsters that can cast binding or numbing effects with the sound of their roar, this roar did no harm whatsoever.
In other words, the current roar was really nothing more than a loud voice.
After the roar, the giant dragon cleaved off with its right arm.
While some players were still amazed because of the giant dragon’s actions that were still far away from them, two of the tanks, especially Noel, stood in front of everyone.
A hemispherical defensive shield was created from the [two-handed shield] that Noel thrust into the earth.
The most surprising thing is its range. She produced a solid shield so huge that it enveloped all the scattered players.
The moment the shield was deployed, a roaring storm crashed into the shield.
The “Around Shield”, which had only lightly creaked even after taking a direct hit from the wind, disappeared without a trace after preventing the wind pressure attack the dragon throw with just a wave of its arm.
“How was it?”
“I think we can ignore that one for now. It’s not that powerful. But some players might have trouble with it.”
[Around shield] is a ranged defense art that can protect a wide area with a barrier, but the user also took all the damage the barrier got hit with. Based on that, the damage Noel took from this attack is zero.
In other words, just like the roar, the current wind pressure was not an attack that was intended to cause damage.
However, they don’t know how many players would be able to keep their feet on the ground after being hit by the wind pressure.
Aside from players with heavy equipment, the problem is healers, buffers, and wizards who tend to use lighter equipment.
While wizards can put up barriers, buffers and healers may not have defensive skills depending on their build.
“No, I’ll leave that part to Rinne. She’s learned almost all basic magic skills, so she can put up a protective barrier. You need to be focused on what is coming next.”
“Roger that! Then all I need to do is to manage the hate properly.”
Noel said calmly as she defended herself from the debris that the giant dragon had flung at her.
In this opening act, the hate is fully focused on Noel since she had used her arts. And that’s completely fine since it was her intention from the beginning.
“Then I will start. I going in.”
Noel said and ran off, holding her huge shield at the ready.
It seems the giant dragon will keep doing ranged attacks if she didn’t close the distance.
It’s okay for now since it is not that powerful, but eventually, the long-ranged player will begin the attack, so it’s better to start the close-range battle as soon as possible. And, it’s also a hassle to melee players close the distance while long-range attacks rain down on them.
Considering all that, Noel decided to closes the distance while the hate is still directed at her.
This is because if Noel stays close to the giant dragon and continues to be attacked, the attacks won’t be directed to other players except for its occasional ranged attacks.
Tetsuya fully understood what Noel was thinking, let her go alone, and stepped in front of the rest of the team to prevent an accidental death of other players.
“Oh, Drago? What’s up? Did something happen?”
“No, it’s nothing big, but have this message from Ms. Rinne and Ms. Sukuna. They said they wouldn’t be able to participate in attacking for a while, they will wait until Noel, or you gather enough hate.”
“I wonder what they up to? Are they going to use a big move from the beginning or something? …well, I don’t mind, but tell Rinne to put a barrier on our Healer and Buffer. “
“Copy that. I’ll be right back soon. I’ll also help you with the vanguard position. “
“Got it. Noel is almost done with her preparation. I’m going to move soon.”
Tetsuya was not sure why Drago bother to deliver a message from Rinne, but she did anyway, and Tetsuya turned his attention to the giant dragon.
In spite of the tremendous size difference, Noel alone handling the giant dragon’s attack, seeing this scene, Tetsuya also strengthened his grip on his shield.
Among the player here, Noel has the best defense among the tank player, but Tetsuya also devotes a lot of resources to his firepower, so as a pure tank, Noel is superior.
Yosei : it’s not exactly a fairy, just like Oni to Ogre translation, similar, but not exactly.
Whenever I use Noel or Noelle, I’m conflicted since Noelle from Genshin Impact also fits into the tank role.