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In Dong Jiang University, the dormitory’s conditions were good, holding at most two students in each room. He Yu came to the foot of his dormitory block. He was finally able to put off his thoughts regarding The King’s Glory and focus on the start of his college life. When he had arrived earlier in the afternoon, he did not have time to unpack his stuff and his roommate was not there yet. Looking at the third floor, sixth from the left, his room was still dark. It was past ten at night already.
Still not here?
He Yu mumbled to himself as he made his way up and the door was locked as expected. However, after he switched on the lights, he realized his roommate’s stuff was already there. This meant that his roommate had arrived but left again.
Unlike He Yu, his roommate had already unpacked and arranged everything neatly. From the bed to the bathroom, everything was laid out nicely. It was obvious that his roommate was a thorough guy who liked things organized.
He Yu unpacked his stuff and tidied up the room. When he was done, his roommate was still not back as he laid on his bed to rest. Then, his WeChat notification popped up and he checked his phone. Earlier on, he had added Gao Ge and Zhou Mo through the app and they had now created a group chat. It was called “Team Lang Qi”.
“Have you downloaded the game? Which hero do you intend to use?” Gao Ge texted the group.
“Downloaded, currently updating. I have a hero in mind.” He Yu replied.
“Oh? Which hero?” Gao Ge asked while Zhou Mo sent an emoji, both expressing interest.
“Genghis Khan.” He Yu answered.
Genghis Khan? His reply put Gao Ge in a daze while Zhou Mo replied with a shocked emoji.
Genghis Khan was a ranged hero, with a player usage percentage that ranked sixty-eighth among all heroes and ranked last among marksman heroes. It was a very unpopular hero that players rarely used. Gao Ge had expected He Yu’s choice to be more of a support hero, yet he chose an unpopular marksman hero. This was mind-blowing to Gao Ge.
“Why this hero?” Gao Ge and Zhou Mo were both puzzled.
“Vision purposes.” He Yu's answer was short and direct.
This kind of hero was rarely played in games, but being veteran players, Gao Ge and Zhou Mo still had a certain level of understanding about this hero. ‘Vision Purposes’, as what He Yu had said, was related to the hero’s first skill—Eagle Eye.
This skill sent a hawk to scout ahead, allowing the team to have extensive visuals of the surroundings for five seconds. It was good for gaining vision of enemies and one could select the direction to send the hawk. Every sixteen seconds, one hawk would be stored, ready-to-use, holding up to a maximum of two hawks at the same time. This hero also possessed the unique ability to deal extra damage on every third basic attack. However, that was clearly not the reason why He Yu picked this hero.
The main reason for He Yu’s choice was for vision purposes.
With visuals of the surroundings, positions and movements of enemies could be observed. This might not seem important for amateurs, but it was helpful for expert players as they could use it to their advantage. By observing their movements, one with experience could predict the enemies’ intentions and act accordingly.
Theoretically, that was a good enough reason for his choice. Both Gao Ge and Zhou Mo understood He Yu’s choice. However, they still had to remind him, “This hero’s difficulty level is high.”
“Don’t worry, I can use this opportunity to steel myself and perfect this hero.” He Yu was confident.
“Ok, not a bad idea.” Gao Ge agreed.
The good thing about this hero was that its win rate was high even though it had a low usage percentage. Once, it even ranked in the top five in terms of win percentage among all heroes. That showed that this hero had lots of potential, and there were a handful of professional players who picked this hero.
Nevertheless, it was still considerably rare at KPL’s stage for this hero to be picked. With KPL being the top career stage, the appearances of the Hero Genghis Khan were even fewer. At this level, the marksman heroes that were picked most commonly were the heroes Marco Polo and Gongsun Li. Coincidentally, they had the lowest win rates.
It was a similar scenario to when He Yu’s brother, He Liang, played the hero Li Bai. When professional players played a certain hero, many average players who could not play as well as them would follow the trend. This would bring down the win rate of that hero. Professionals and average players were truly worlds apart.
He Yu was not bothered. Playing Genghis Khan would allow him to improve and give him an opportunity to fix his shortcomings. That was why he chose this hero.
“Updated.” He Yu informed.
“Well, wish you all the best.” Gao Ge replied.
“Are we not playing for a round?” Zhou Mo asked.
“Allow him to familiarise himself with the basics first.” Gao Ge said.
“Alright, I will try it out first.” He Yu entered the game eager and focused. Funnily enough, he was soon stuck at the character’s in-game name. After wasting much time coming up with a name, he created ‘He Liang Yu’. Then, there was a beginner's tutorial which he completed with ease. After that, the game officially started and He Yu found himself stuck again.
Without hesitation, He Yu texted through the WeChat to ask his brother, “What do I do about the heroes and arcanas?”
Usually, players could purchase heroes and hero skins using virtual coins. Arcanas were tools to increase hero stats, but they could only be collected slowly or purchased using actual money. He Yu's sole purpose was to ask his brother to sponsor him.
“1000 is enough?” He Yu asked as he stuffed the money into his wallet.
“Slowly, what if you choke? I will be at a loss.” his brother replied.
“How is that possible!?” He Yu snapped.
“Which hero do you intend to master?” His brother inquired.
“Genghis Khan.” He Yu replied.
“Was it because of the hero price?” His brother questioned.
“What?” He Yu had no knowledge regarding this aspect. He went to the hero purchase page to view the prices and then he realized. The hero he wanted to play was actually the most expensive hero among marksman heroes.
That was, of course, not why he chose Genghis Khan. Being doubted, He Yu was irritated. To lighten the mood, He Liang broke the silence, “I’m just joking, was it because of vision purposes?”
“Yes. The standards for this hero are high too, so I think it is suitable to train myself.”
“Ok, go get started.” His brother urged him.
“But the arcanas…”
“At Bronze rank, you don’t need the arcanas. Having arcanas only gives you a 2000 gold lead against other players. It especially won’t be fair if you want to train yourself.” His brother explained.
“Are you serious?” He Yu asked.
“Without a doubt.” He Liang answered.
“Alright, I’ll try.” He Yu said.
“All the best.” his brother encouraged him.
Finally the preparation of the early stages was done and He Yu wanted to try out the ranked game mode. To his dismay, the criteria to participate was to have at least five heroes. He headed back to the store page and purchased a beginner’s package. He then had five heroes and he eagerly started the bronze ranked match. Soon, he entered and was asked to pick his hero.
His journey as a The King’s Glory player had just begun!
He Yu communicated with his teammates and he chose to play the bottom lane.
Usually, marksman heroes would take the bottom lane. As such, He Yu chose to play a marksman hero. To his astonishment, two of his teammates had locked in with marksman heroes: Luban and Hou Yi.
What’s going on?
Before he could react, his other two teammates locked in with mage heroes. There was no communication and all his teammates were already locked in on their own heroes.
“What’s all of this about?” He Yu raged through the mic. In his opinion, an acceptable lineup was to have a mage, a fighter, an assassin, a tank and a marksman hero. However, the current lineup was totally unacceptable with two mages and two marksman heroes.
Every hero had their role to play. Mages and marksman heroes were DPS, with their skills dealing significant damage, and they usually accounted for more than sixty percent of the team’s damage output. With one more damage output hero, it might seem to be a good thing.
On the other hand, it meant that there would be one less role filled up. The empty role could be the role of an initiator, an assassin to clear the mess or a tank to withstand damage, none of which could be replaced by their current roles. This was obviously a big disadvantage to their team. [T/N DPS stands for damage per second and refers to the main damage dealer(s) on a team]
Apart from this, DPS heroes also required farm to be ahead in terms of gold. This would allow them to purchase items in-game faster and therefore deal greater damage to opponents. In the game, jungling or clearing minion waves were the ways to increase their gold. These monsters’ and minions’ respawn times were fixed, so the maximum gold the team could earn from period to period was fixed. In order to efficiently excel in the game, heroes who had high damage output would get a big portion of the gold, while the rest would get a smaller portion.
In every game, in order to maximize the usage of the gold, one mage and one marksman hero was the limit. Yet in their case, all of them were DPS, so all of them had to fight for gold. With the gold usage not properly distributed, it was impossible for the team to operate smoothly.
At the prestigious KPL competition, this information was researched and analyzed properly, and it was impossible to have a team composition with three DPS, or worse, four, or even five. Unlike what He Yu was facing, there would be no such cases happening. What He Yu was experiencing was of the bronze standard, and was common.
To players at this rank, that knowledge did not exist to them. He Yu had been interacting with professionals and watching professionals play, so he had not expected this or experienced this before.
Two mage and two marksman heroes were locked in. There was no top laner, no jungler and no support hero, so which hero should he pick?
Starting the first ranked game of his gaming journey and encountering players of the bronze level, He Yu was at a loss.