Data. 94 – Old Bowman, Four Seasons Labyrinth
You couldn’t get a peek at what was on the other side of the door.
There were no holes or hints that would help prepare you for what was in each dungeon.
In other words, the only way I could choose an order was to go based on my impression of each season.
Though, the most obvious order would be Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter…
“Perhaps it would be best to not overthink it.”
A flower would bloom on your head if you defeated a boss, and you had to protect it while fighting. Considering this, it would be most efficient to leave the easiest dungeon for the last.
However, it was my first time here, so I didn’t know which was easy and which was difficult.
And so I just decided that for my first time, I would go in the order that they occur in nature.
I opened the pink Spring door.
What awaited me inside…was a blue sky, white clouds, and a field of young grass.
There were lots of cherry blossom trees growing, and a warm breeze carried the petals in the wind.
I see. This is why it was called a phantom tree.
While the dungeon was inside of a tree, it felt like you were outside… Well, that was the setting.
As the dungeon was in its own dimension, it could look like anything. But usually the dungeon would look similar to its entrance, be it a cave or castle.
So this one was certainly different, but it was impressive that there was a proper reason for it.
NSO looked random a lot of the time, but once in a while, they put a lot of thought into it.
I was cautious of my surroundings as I moved on ahead.
While there were no enemies in sight…the field seemed quite strange?
There were numerous trees around me that were lined up so that the field was separated into squares.
And when I tried to go through the trees, I was stopped by an invisible wall.
It reminded me of a roguelike where the dungeons were randomly generated.
The ones where you moved through a map that was made up of square rooms and narrow passages.
And so if I tried to leave the square field, I had to pass through a narrow passage that was barely wide enough for one person to pass through.
Once I was through the passage, I came out into another square field.
Yes…so it really was similar to a roguelike dungeon.
Through grasping the map and fighting, I became sure of it.
The enemy monsters that appeared were trees that walked around on their roots. A Treant.
The cherry blossoms on their heads were in full bloom, just like an afro.
That was fine. While they looked quite bizarre, they were just like any other monster.
What was different…was that if I didn’t move, they wouldn’t move.
If I stood still, then the Treant would stand still as well.
And if I took a step forward, so would the Treant.
Then I started opening and closing my status window.
And then the Treant suddenly rushed towards me at a frightening speed.
In this dungeon, they used a turn based system.
So if I took an action, the enemy would act to the same degree.
Though, it wasn’t strictly 1 action for 1 action.
If I moved several times at once, the enemy would suddenly become faster. So perhaps it was more of a pseudo turn based system.
Because of this, Garbow was a lot less active than usual.
Normally, he would start wandering around if there were no enemies. But now he stayed behind me.
This was more proof of how this place worked.
If you wanted to clear this dungeon with ease, then you had to do it in fewer actions.
Also, as the enemy didn’t approach unless I moved, I just needed to defeat them while they were still far away.
For instance…with a bow and long range.
Kiririri… Shu! Zhunk!
The rules of this dungeon really suited my style!
The scariest thing for someone who fights with ranged weapons is not realizing that someone has approached and being ambushed by them.
However, that couldn’t happen with these turned based rules.
As long as I knew where the enemy was, I could take my time aiming and hitting them.
Ah. If all dungeons and bosses were like this, I might be the strongest… Or not.
This was no time to fantasize about such things.
Regardless, it was rare for the rules to be so much in my favor, and so I was sure that I would clear the dungeon with ease.
◆ ◆ ◆
In this dungeon, you used warp panels to move to other floors.
They looked like over-designed manholes. And when you stepped on them, they teleported you to the next floor.
And so I easily destroyed the monsters in my path and warped three times.
Once I reached the 4th floor, I found an especially large manhole…I mean, warp panel.
This…must mean that I had reached the boss.
I had plenty of HP and MP left.
And I was fully stocked with recovery items.
And my charge attacks weren’t in cooldown.
Charin said there were 4 bosses, so each one shouldn’t be too strong.
Besides, if the same turn based system was used during the boss fight, then I wouldn’t have to worry about warping and then being killed immediately.
And so I stepped on the panel and warped to the boss floor.
I came out into a dark area.
It wasn’t pitch black like a cave, as there was a sky and a shining moon.
And in the far back there was a large cherry blossom tree.
It was illuminated by the moonlight…no, the tree itself had a pale glow to it.
And under the cherry blossom tree, stood a solitary knight.
He rode a white horse, had a bow in one hand and a crown on his head.
His name was…White Rider.
So it was one of the horsemen from Revelations.
Now, it was time to use that skill.
◆ White Rider
Skill: Conquest Arrow, White Apocalypse
One of the four horsemen from Revelations that appear at the end of the world.
As the first horseman, the White Rider is the lord of ‘conquest.’
The arrow that robs opponents of their freedom and the agile white horse are a great threat.
So a duel between archers… What a coincidence.
I suppose it’s the Conquest Arrow that robs you of your freedom?
But what does that mean, exactly?
Does it stop your movement like the boss lion in the Leo labyrinth?
And then, he took the arrow that had been unleashed in my direction.
Damn it. I had been concentrating too much on the enemy information.
Still, the turn based system was in effect, and there was no follow up arrow from the White Rider.
In that case, I could have Garbow fight in the front, while I would attack the boss from the back. It’s worked for us many times.
Arrows were a physical attack, so it shouldn’t hurt Garbow too much…
Garbow started squawking at me.
But it wasn’t in reply. It was a hostile cry…!
So, the effect of Conquest Arrow was…making your target your ally!?
Damn it… Garbow was right in front of me.
If I attacked the White Rider now, then it would be Garbow’s turn, and he might hit me with a charge attack. And I would die.
Even if he returned to normal after being damaged, Garbow was much stronger when it came to fighting in close quarters.
I would likely die immediately.
In that case, there was only one thing to do…!
Garbow was taken apart and combined with my bow.
Alright! Now I could use a combination charge attack!
I didn’t open my status to see if I could use it, so it was based on luck. But it seemed that the goddess of victory had smiled down on me.
The White Rider was swallowed up by the meteor-like arrow.
It was just one of four bosses, and should be set to be quite easy…and yet I had used it.
I had not expected to use my trump card on the first dungeon.
I suppose the last trial was always going to be the hard one.
It would be boring if it wasn’t… I thought, and then chuckled.
It seemed like I couldn’t make up my mind if I wanted it to be easy or difficult.
Well, I was being sincere either way.
I picked up the cherry blossom that the White Rider dropped and then a big flower bloomed on my head.
It looked more like a hair ornament that was designed to resemble a flower than an actual flower growing there.
Not really something that suited an old man…
Or, maybe it wasn’t that bad…?
Well, in any case. Now there was Summer, Autumn and Winter left.
Like I had already decided, I would tackle them in the proper order. So it was off to the Summer dungeon!