54 Hidden Stats of Lucky Brats
Quick Overview of Taliesin's "accidental discovery" of the most famous sword in history:
"I accidentally stumbled across this side quest, and one thing led to another, and I ended up in a cave with an underground lake. In the middle, a boulder rose out of the water, and I saw something shiny, so I went to investigate. And there were a bunch of magic traps and a stupid powerful mob that looked like the Loch Ness Monster, but once I managed to survive all that, it got all glowy and the music was all pretty, and then I pulled the sword from the stone."
I have no words for this nonsense.
I bonk Taliesin on the head because it feels like the right thing to do.
He accepts it without much fuss, just fixes his hair and continues with the cheerful chatter, so I'm assuming I'm not the only one who feels compelled to violence around him.
Remember when I thought I was the only one to find a Nova item in my Foundation Village? HA. This kid found a fucking Legendary Weapon.
Now that I can Perceive Hidden stats, I use Thread Reader II for the first time to check out a single attribute of another player.
Taliesin's Luck stat reads: 30 (MAX) +3
WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?
"Do you happen to have items with a +Luck effect?" I ask him with as much nonchalance as I can muster.
"Oh yeah! Excalibur is +2, and this necklace is +1." He lifts the silver and emerald shamrock dangling around his neck. "How'd you know?"
"Call it a lucky guess."
I pull up my own stats to compare.
Title: The Natural
Level: 14 EXP: 2850/5000000
HP: 486 SP: 88
Mythic Hero Ranking: ???
Windflower Emblem - Heart of a Champion: +100 World Reputation. Power of the Winds: +5% Running Speed, +8% Flying Speed, +10% Flying Height; Hidden Stat Effects: +1 Fortitude, +2 Charisma, -1 Luck
How the hell does a person end up with NEGATIVE LUCK?!
Like, I knew my luck was bad, but.
For fuck's sake.
And what's up with my other hidden stats?
I have a ton of Fortitude buffs thanks to Quest of Daring rewards and talismans, so that's not a surprise. I don't even know what max Fortitude is; someone hit 60 in the beta, and they still got pwned by a God-tier NPC who put a willpower whammy on them.
But my Perception has been bizarrely high from the get-go. Enough that I've already gained two Hidden PER Skills: Nightvision - Racial Perk (Lvl 3) and Detect Trace (Lvl 1). Since it took me the entire beta to reach Perception 20, it's weird.
And whyyy in the world is my Charisma so high?!
Like Luck, Charisma maxes at 30 and is insanely hard to increase.
Most games, Charisma might increase as you talk to NPCs and such, but Viren's Refuge only increases base Charisma through dealing with uber important NPCs or by completing Hidden Tasks.
(The weirdest CHA Hidden Task someone completed in the beta involved wooing a Greek goat farmer NPC for three weeks and finally convincing him to run away with him and fulfill his childhood dreams of becoming a chariot racer.
Later, people asked the Player how he knew it was a Hidden Task. "I didn't," he replied. "I just fell in love with Gaetano and wanted him to live his truth." RPGs, my dudes. Takes all kinds.)
Most players will start between 0 - 3 Charisma. What kind of bizarro thought process did the Fates' AI go through when giving me negative Luck but enough Charisma I could probably pull a Lancelot and bang Queen G?
Shit, if I score another 5 Charisma, I might be able to convince ol' Lance and King Arthur to join us.
Suddenly a lot of things make sense.
1) I literally smashed three dozen eggs out of Dina's hands and still triggered a chain quest and a dinner invite.
2) Tarabu cries at how great I am, even when I only provide mono-syllabic answers to his insanity.
3) Logane only threw one dagger at my head the whole time I was in his shop, and he even let me keep it.
I'm the NPC whisperer.
"Damnit, I didn't need you!" I scold Taliesin. "I would have scored this quest even if I'd burned that dude's house down!"
Taliesin's eyes widen, aghast. "Why would you burn poor Gavigan's house down? He's a single parent, you know!"
"How is that your takeaway from what I said?" I sigh, ruffling my hair in exasperation.
I swear, I can't with this kid.
I send him to fight a fleet of fox mobs while I flop onto the grass in this pretty bluebell-covered meadow. When I'm sure the kid'll be busy but not dead, I call up Nightfury.
"The fuck you want?" he answers with his trademark scowl.
I feel revived.
"Scored Part II of the chain quest, no thanks to your stalker fanboy contribution." (Okay, not entirely true, but he doesn't need to know that.)
Nightfury grins, the dick. "Pretty boy geniuses owe it to help the youth, right?"
"Is that why children run screaming from you, then? Ya fugly snake bastard."
Yellow eyes laughing at my pain, Nightfury feigns seriousness. "Tut, tut. Language, Erebus. There's a child around."
"And thanks to you, he will continue to be around. Guess who's officially joined our Quest?"
Finally, the smug grin disappears from the Draegkyn's face. "What."
Now it's my turn to smirk, though I also want to groan. "I'd say we could name our party the Babysitter's Club, except the kid's got more skills than the rest of your team combined."
I shake my head. "You just haaad to blab."
"I want to say I wouldn't do it again...but then I picture your face when he showed up out of nowhere, all starry-eyed and earnest..."
I don't know what PTSD face I make right then, but Nightfury proceeds to laugh his ass off for long enough I hang up.
He calls back, but I Mute his ass for an hour and call Lialas instead.
Of course, Nightfury's standing next to him, so the traitor dryad makes his call screen visible to both of them.
Deciding it's definitely not worth trying to hold an intelligent conversation with Shadeslayer, I suck it up and stay on the line with these two.
I ask them when they think they might wanna go a-questing. Apparently, Shadeslayer and Kane are off doing the most annoying quests ever to get the Foundation Skills they missed. They won't be free for a while, and then they'll need to grind to catch up Level-wise.
But Lialas finished the Jump quest already, and he and Nightfury only have a little more to do to for Lux. Then Lialas wants to hit up a couple quests to raise his INT, but he could be ready to roll by tomorrow afternoon.
"What about you?" I ask Nightfury. "Do you need time for the Cursed Hat quest?"
His face darkens; even the red scales at his temples turn bloodred. "Can't," he snaps. "Don't wanna talk about it."
I raise a questioning eyebrow to Lialas.
"He's just mad because he found out it's a super complicated chain quest, and he has to wait for a special event for the next part."
"Damnit, dryad, shut up, will you?" Nightfury smacks Lialas with his tail.
Lialas ruffles the leaves in his hair, making it sound like the leaves are laughing. "It's not all bad, you whiny dragon. Sure, you're stuck with that raggedy hat for a while, but now we're the only ones who know the Wild Hunt's on the New Moon in a fortnight."
I bolt up. "Duuuude! Fuckin' A!"
"Why'd you tell him for?" Nightfury complains.
Lialas isn't buying it. "You probably just wanted to tell him in person, hoping he'd get excited enough to leap into your strong scaly arms."
"Aw, Nightfury, you should have said you wanted to reciprocate my epic dungeon save!" I flutter my lashes and wings. "I'll let you carry me bridal style next time!"
"I'd rather be stabbed in the dick with a morningstar," Nightfury deadpans, face murderous.
Then the line goes dead.
I laugh my ass off and feel rejuvenated.
"What's funny?" Taliesin asks as he returns, all the mobs dead.
"Riling up dragons and dick jokes."
"Ahh," Taliesin nods in total understanding.
I should probably feel bad that I have the humor of a high schooler.
I do not.
But I probably should.
Unconcerned, I jump to my feet and continue to the nearest Fae Portal.
Giving Nightfury shit gave me an idea, so I tell the kid we have two party members ready to join us tomorrow, and then I oh-so-casually mention Kara.
"Soooo, I was thinking," I say, "since we still have a couple spots available, I guess it's only fair if you want to add a party member or two..."
"Sure, yeah. And, uh, don't you think the Valkyrie on your team might want to join us? Given the specific nature of this quest?"
I cross my fingers and pray to gods I probably don't believe in.
"Good call! I'm sure Kara would love to help."
'Fuck yesssss.' I do the world's smallest fist pump, then I go back to acting cool. "She'd probably want Jade to join us, then, right?"
Come on, gimme my wingwoman...
Taliesin frowns. "I'm sure Jade would want to, but she and Rah are busy, off collecting Foundation Skills. They realized how important they were when we sucked so hard at Nightmare Mode."
Bummer. Can't have everything, I guess.
"But Nanuk will be free," the Pu`ca says with more excitement than I think the stoic shaman probably deserves. "Bro's already learned some healing, so he'll be helpful."
Figuring if nothing else, big bro might take the kid's attention away from me for a while, I agree.
"All right. Tell them to meet us in Tara at 16:00 tomorrow."
"We aren't headed to Lough Gur?" Taliesin asks.
"Nope," I reply, while I shoot a message to Nightfury and Lialas telling them the same. It's a trek, but they'll be able to grind along the way.
"What's in Tara?"
"Everything. It's the Capitol, seat of the High King. Since we have a while before we can finish this quest, I have some errands to run. You can teleport yourself to Lough Gur after you drop me off."
"Ooh, actually, I found some awesome crafting materials—"
"Of course you did." I bop him on the head again.
"—so I need to find a good tailor. Can I come with you? I don't mind sharing if you need some materials. I have too many."
I want to deny him on principle, but also I never say no to free shit, on different principle.
Then I remember where I need to go, and I realize an annoyingly cute bundle of luck might not be a bad thing to bring along.
"I know someone. She's the best. But I don't think she'll be happy to see me."
"Why do you say that?"
"The last time I saw her, she stabbed me." I rub my gut, remembering.
"Maybe it was a misunderstanding?"
"Four times. She stabbed me four times."
"Great! Sounds like she's gotten it out of her system. Lead the way!"