Qin Rui, carrying his laptop, followed Ye Shaoyang into the study. He grabbed a chair from the dining room and set it down next to his cousin's gaming chair, then got back in the game to send Ye Shaoyang an invite to queue up.
8:30 PM was the peak time to be in the game. In less than five seconds, they were sorted into a match. Since games below the Diamond rank didn't have a B&P—bans and picks—stage, they were only able to see who their teammates were after the match began.
Of the five players on their team, Ye Shaoyang's [Xiao Bai] was still in the Bronze rank. Qin Rui's [Xiao Rui] was Gold. The other three players—[Legendary Ge], [Your Slight Smile], and [My Heartbeat]—were all in Silver. The latter two players, judging by their IDs, were most likely a couple.
According to the ranking system, this match would be considered a Silver match.
Ye Shaoyang's account only had five heroes unlocked, so he selected the mid lane mage-type hero, 'Frost Goddess - Xue Li'. A beautiful woman with long, wavy blond hair, dressed in snow-white mage's robes, appeared on the screen.
When Qin Rui saw his gege choose a mage, he instantly selected a support—'Forest Envoy - Ya'an'. This character was an adorable little girl with a big ponytail and a pair of pointy ears. All her skills were based around healing.
Soon afterwards, their teammate [Your Slight Smile] chose a mage as well. [My Heartbeat] chose a marksman, and [Legendary Ge] chose an assassin. Their lineup came out as one assassin, two mages, one marksman, and one support.
[Your Slight Smile]: I play mage. Xiao Bai, you switch heroes, okay?
[My Heartbeat]: Support, switch to a tankier hero. The Forest Envoy is too brittle!
[Your Slight Smile]: Listen to my boyfriend, switch to a tank. Hurry, hurry.
[Xiao Rui]: Sorry, I'm not very good at other supports.
[Xiao Bai]: Silver matches aren't that serious. Just play what you're good at.
[Your Slight Smile]: ……
[Your Slight Smile]: How exactly are we supposed to play two mages?
[Xiao Bai]: We'll manage.
[Xiao Bai]: I'll take the top lane, you can take the middle. Let's begin.
The couple saw that they couldn't negotiate with him, so they had no choice but to hit 'ready' in a huff.
The game began.
Ye Shaoyang hadn't been wrong. Silver-ranked games weren't that serious. There was no need to stress over their team composition, and tactics didn't matter all that much. As long as there was one seasoned veteran on a team, they could destroy everyone and lead their teammates to victory.
Technically, this was Ye Shaoyang's first time really playing in a ranked Gods War match. The previous time, when he'd just stepped into this life, didn't count. His brain had been muddled at the time, and he was inexplicably assassinated over and over again. He hadn't played seriously at all.
But this time, he took it very seriously.
He'd already won a few training matches against A.I. teams while using the Frost Goddess; he was already very familiar with her.
When the game began, Ye Shaoyang crept into the woods on the top lane and started a timer in his head. He waited until the other team's fighter appeared in his field of vision, then decisively used his Q skill—which instantly shaved off 10% of his opponent's HP. That was barely a scratch for the enemy fighter, but it was extremely important to seize every opportunity to wound the opponent in these match-ups. Sometimes, this seemingly insignificant gap in HP could turn the tides of the battle at a critical moment.
The other player didn't seem to care about that bit of lost HP. Ye Shaoyang swiftly began to slay an incoming wave of minions.
In the blink of an eye, he rose to Level 2 and gained his W skill—'Deep Ice'. He accurately predicted his opponent's movements and used this skill to freeze his opponent in place, after which he used his Q skill again to shave off more of his opponent's HP.
This time, his opponent's HP dropped by 30%.
The fighter seemed to sense that his enemy was stronger than him. He didn't dare emerge from beneath his tower.
The two of them coexisted peacefully for a while, farming minions and leveling up without harassing each other.
The peace lasted until the three-minute mark, at which point Ye Shaoyang's hero became the first on the field to light up with the glow indicating a promotion.
His Frost Goddess had reached Level 6.
As in League of Legends, reaching Level 6 was a critical turning point in Gods War. Every hero in Gods War had four basic skills, and at Level 6 they gained their ultimate move—their ult.
The Frost Goddess's ult was named 'Blizzard'. It summoned a huge snowstorm that dealt strong, AoE magic damage. If a target was frozen in the midst of this storm, the damage against them was doubled. The Frost Goddess's W skill, 'Deep Ice', and her Q skill, 'Piercing Cold', were perfect complements to this ult. When used together to good effect, the three skills could wreak havoc.
This was an extremely basic combo for mages. Ye Shaoyang had grown familiar with it a long time ago.
The enemy fighter was still cowering under his tower. Ye Shaoyang hid in the woods on his side of the lane, waiting for the opportunity to strike.
At that moment, a system notification rang out in his ears—
A team fight had suddenly broken out on the bottom lane. The pair of lovebirds on their team had been butchered by the enemy assassin!
Qin Rui fled swiftly, making it back to their base in critical health.
A barrage of messages popped up in their team chat—
[Your Slight Smile]: Can you noobs not play ranked? @[Xiao Rui]
[My Heartbeat]: You obviously must know you suck, so can you please not drag us down when we're trying to play ranked? A.I. matches are better-suited for you.
[Your Slight Smile]: The opposing support knows all about teamwork, but our support just knows how to run away, huh?
[My Heartbeat]: Stupid support! Let's forfeit at the six-minute mark and hurry on to the next game.
When Qin Rui saw those hurtful words aimed at him, his expression became a little uneasy.
He bit his lower lip as he returned to the fountain to recover his health, then headed back to the bottom lane.
The couple continued to insult him.
[Your Slight Smile]: We're up ahead fighting a whole team. Are you just going to stand there and watch the show? Aren't you ashamed, selling out your teammates like this?
[My Heartbeat]: Besides running away with your tail between your legs, what else do you know how to do?
[Your Slight Smile]: You aren't some cowardly, timid little omega, are you? All you know how to do is run?
[My Heartbeat]: Seriously. If you just give us some heals, we wouldn't die. You're being such a coward, just look at yourself!
[Your Slight Smile]: I suggest you uninstall the game. Stupid ****.
The two of them were getting harder and harder to listen to.
Ye Shaoyang's biggest flaw was that he always protected the weak. If those two had been dissing him, he might not have cared. But they were making his didi's eyes go red. That was something he couldn't tolerate.
Ye Shaoyang looked at Qin Rui. "You won't fight back?"
Qin Rui ducked his head and meekly mumbled, "My dad said omegas shouldn't swear. It's too crass."
Ye Shaoyang raised his eyebrows. "…is that so?"
In the next instant, he let his hands fly across the keyboard. He tore into those two—
[Xiao Bai]: All you know how to do after dying is diss your support. Don't you have any idea where your own skills stand?
[Xiao Bai]: What? You want my support to martyr himself with you?
[Xiao Bai]: You're lagging behind the enemy in gold, yet you're still stubbornly charging into team fights. Your skills are all on cooldown, your handling is all over the place. It's honestly hard to watch.
[Xiao Bai]: Hurry and just shut up. Go AFK by the fountain and watch. I'll take care of my support.
This little Xiao Bai really typed way too fast.
Those four messages popped up in the blink of an eye. The couple was momentarily rendered speechless. Their brains couldn't keep up with the speed of Ye Shaoyang's hands.
Ye Shaoyang said, "Xiao Rui, come find me on the top lane."
Qin Rui remained frozen for a second, then instantly rushed into the jungle and scampered up towards the top lane without thinking twice.
At that time, their top lane minions were already advancing. The enemy fighter really couldn't resist sticking his neck out to farm some minions. But before he could kill a single one, a lotus-shaped ice crystal bloomed beneath his feet. Immediately afterwards, the blizzard descended!
The fighter's HP plummeted, quickly zeroing out.
A message popped up on the screen—
[Xiao Bai] killed [Prince Huahua]!
When Qin Rui arrived, he was just in time to see the fallen fighter lying in a pool of his own blood.
He looked over at his gege with some disbelief on his face, but he found that Ye Shaoyang's expression was perfectly calm.
After taking down the enemy fighter, Ye Shaoyang ventured into the jungle to harvest some resources. Then he returned to their base to restore his health and purchase new equipment. When he returned to the top lane, the enemy fighter was farming minions again. Ye Shaoyang swiftly threw out a WQR combo and knocked the fighter down once more.
[Xiao Bai] killed [Prince Huahua]!
The couple had finally come back to their senses. They were busily dissing Xiao Bai in the global chat now, filling up the chat box with endless strings of censored characters. Ye Shaoyang and his previous eighteen generations of ancestors were all insulted. Their other teammate, [Legendary Ge], had adopted a 'hear no evil' attitude. He remained calm and stayed out of the fight, not supporting either side or bickering with any of them. Ever since the start of the game, he had been minding his own business in the jungle.
Ye Shaoyang didn't waste time arguing with the couple either. He focused on the game.
The same message popped up on the screen again and again—
[Xiao Bai] killed [Prince Huahua]!
[Xiao Bai] killed [Prince Huahua]!
By the five-minute mark, Ye Shaoyang had cleared a path down the entire top lane.
The opposing team realized that things were looking bleak. They all rushed to group up on the top lane. Ye Shaoyang preemptively hid out in the woods near the base tower on the top lane, while Qin Rui hid with him and continuously replenished his HP.
All five opponents passed right before his eyes in a single-file line.
These newbies didn't know to keep some space between themselves, and they didn't know how to use their skills to scope out the nearby woods. They marched straight into the thicket.
Ye Shaoyang instantly hit a few keys—
Deep Ice, Piercing Cold, Blizzard!
He fluidly executed that three-skill combo within one second. His precise predictions of the opposing team's positions allowed him to instantaneously turn all five enemies into ice sculptures.
Ye Shaoyang was wearing a complete set of high-level equipment, and he had already built up a dominating gold advantage.
The crushing blizzard whooshed down and engulfed everything. The five frozen enemies couldn't move a muscle. They were struck, and their team was immediately wiped out!
A stream of system notifications flooded the screen—
[Xiao Bai] killed [Prince Huahua]!
[Xiao Bai] killed [Lemon Pudding], double kill!
[Xiao Bai] killed [Snow Maiden], triple kill!
[Xiao Bai] killed [Falling Flowers], quadruple kill!
[Xiao Bai] killed [Rippling Water], pentakill!
[Xiao Bai] is on fire!
[Xiao Bai] is dominating the game!
The couple fell silent.
What the hell???
They had planned on forfeiting the match when the option popped up at the six-minute mark, but before the sixth minute of the game…
They were winning!
They were winning?!
The couple had been too engrossed in talking shit in the chat. They didn't even understand how the top lane had been cleared.
Ye Shaoyang swiftly sold all his equipment and bought the physical damage weapon with the highest attack stat. He led his minions forward and started to attack the crystal at the enemy base.
While auto-attacking the crystal, he typed out a message: [We're going to win. Happy?]
The couple remained silent.
While they were busy swearing up a storm, their teammate had dragged them to victory. They weren't happy about that at all!
[Xiao Bai]: I led my support to victory. Does it have anything to do with the two of you?
[Xiao Bai]: You die once and spend the next five minutes complaining. Are you playing this game with your mouth?
[Xiao Bai]: Anyway, bye. See you never.
He typed at the speed of light, and he timed his three-hit attack perfectly. Just as that 'see you never' appeared on the screen, the enemy team's crystal exploded with a big boom!
The game ended. Golden letters spelling out 'VICTORY' appeared at the center of the screen.
The chat interface was disabled; it was no longer possible to continue typing.
Even if the couple wanted to lodge more complaints, they had no way of making themselves heard.
This was Ye Shaogyang's 'hitting you in the face when you can't hit back' technique.
Qin Rui was speechless.
He twisted his head around to stare at his gege, with disbelief written all over his face. "Ge, when did you become so powerful? Didn't you just start playing this game the day before yesterday?"
Ye Shaoyang was thick-skinned. He deadpanned, "I may have only been playing for two days, but I've realized that I have a sort of natural talent for gaming. Thanks for pulling me into this pit."
He couldn't say he was from another world where he'd won national championships, after all. It was better to use 'talent' as an excuse. Talent was a mysterious thing, anyway. It wouldn't sound too suspicious.
In this life, he'd never played games before the age of twenty-one. Then, his cousin introduced him to Gods War, and he discovered he had a natural gift for gaming. So he decided to become a professional esports player.
That story made sense, right?
Even if someone had doubts about it, they wouldn't be able to prove that any part of it was false. After all, he had indeed only been pulled into this pit by his cousin a few days ago.
The game they'd just played had only been a low-Silver match, but it did at least prove Ye Shaoyang had gained an understanding of the game. He was even more pleased to discover that his hands, even in this body, were still quick. He could keep up with the high speeds and intensity of professional esports.
Although twenty-one was a bit old for one to be starting out as an esports player, Ye Shaoyang had played countless games in his previous life. He was extremely accustomed to playing in big matches. He could easily adapt to a new team, and there was no need to worry about his psychological state under pressure.
He had complete faith that a scout would be willing to sign him, as long as he made his name known in the game.
The in-game heroes are all randomly made up, with some inspiration taken from Honor of Kings and League of Legends. Please don't take the skills/gameplay too seriously~