Chapter 1361: Only Two Rounds Remaining
Translator: Nomyummi Editor: Nomyummi
Excellent Era is back!
Even though it was not what it had been before, everyone knew that this Excellent Era was the direct successor of that old powerhouse. It was just that the luxury goods of this house had been sold off, so it seemed somewhat run-down.
But for many loyal fans, as long as this team was still here, that was enough.
The instant that Excellent Era won, Chen Guo clearly heard a racket coming from outside, and even the sound of people setting fireworks. They were celebrating Excellent Era’s victory – Excellent Era’s return.
Excellent Era belonged to this city, in the past, and in the present still. True, Happy was here as well and had even taken over Excellent Era’s former home stadium, earning pretty good attendance at their matches. But it was clear that compared to Excellent Era, who had been rooted here for ten years, Happy couldn’t compare. Respect was won through results in competition, but feelings and passion couldn’t be transferred so quickly.
“What do you think?” Chen Guo asked Ye Xiu.
“The match was pretty good. Mysterious Fantasy clearly had the advantage in terms of experience, but Excellent Era’s young players had more drive, and they seized more opportunities in the end,” said Ye Xiu.
“Who cares about that,” Chen Guo huffed. “I’m asking you about your feelings on Excellent Era’s return.”
Ye Xiu felt out a cigarette, lit it, took a deep breath and nodded. “Pretty good.”
“Next season, they’ll become our opponents,” said Chen Guo.
Ye Xiu smiled faintly. “We’ve beaten them, what’s there to worry about?”
“What are you pretending for.” Chen Guo was speechless. She knew that Ye Xiu was someone who would never look down on any opponent.
Ye Xiu continued to smile, but he didn’t say anything. He watched the television quietly, watched that new generation Battle Mage, who announced to the world: “We’re back.”
Yes! They were back.
To be able to return after leaving, that feeling was wonderful, wasn’t it?
Ye Xiu thought of that year and a half he’d spent in retirement and couldn’t help but let out a sigh.
Excellent Era’s return!
The next day, this made headlines everywhere. And this new Excellent Era wasn’t a powerhouse, only the remnants of a powerhouse, but they still stood resolutely, they still charged through the Challenger League. This earned much praise for the young army of New Excellent Era, and the media began to report in detail on the players and characters of this new army. The excitement was comparable to how everyone had felt last year when Happy knocked down the powerhouse Excellent Era.
In this year, Excellent Era had experienced both roles.
With the strength of a powerhouse, they’d lost the most critical battle, attracting all sorts of anger and criticism.
At a weakened level, they’d conquered the final obstacle, winning all sorts of praise and support.
Everyone was already indulging discussion on Excellent Era’s future. But they only had half a day of time, because at 8PM that night, Round 36 of the regular season began. Here, the competition would only be fiercer.
This round, Happy was playing their home game, welcoming the second-to-last Bright Green, who was already set to be relegated. In everyone’s eyes, this was basically a gift of points for Happy. And Wind Howl was facing Parade this round. Meanwhile, Hundred Blossoms and Thunderclap faced off, becoming the match that was chosen for broadcast. 301 continued their difficult match schedule, this round playing their away game against Blue Rain.
They had reached a critical point in the season, so even though Happy’s opponent was weak, there were still many fans who came to watch. And this time, they finally watched their fill, without any disappointment.
Happy earned a perfect 10-0 victory against Bright Green, giving their team a valuable point buffer during this fierce point in the competition. Even more valuable, Ye Xiu still didn’t appear in the team competition this match, but Happy’s team was still able to cleanly defeat their enemies. Those reporters who had been ready to tear into Happy could only grit their teeth.
Wind Howl also won their match, 9-1 against Parade. The death match between Hundred Blossoms and Thunderclap entered the typical rhythm for Thunderclap matches. After the individual rounds, Hundred Blossoms had the lead 4-1, but Thunderclap won the team competition, ultimately surpassing Hundred Blossoms 6-4.
And 301 defeated Blue Rain 7-3. Step by step, they were breaking through their difficult match schedule. After their three matches against Samsara, Tiny Herb, and Blue Rain, they won 15 points in total. Even though they were still in ninth place for now, they hadn’t dropped in the rankings. They were only one point behind the eighth place Hundred Blossoms, so a reversal within one round was completely possible. And Round 37 looked to be a perfect opportunity for this.
Round 37, 301 was fighting their home game against the current last place team, Seaside. And Hundred Blossoms was facing Tyranny.
In Round 36, Tyranny had won 10-0 against Seaside, while Blue Rain had lost to 301, so the two teams switched on the leaderboard. Tyranny once again rose to second place, forcing Blue Rain down to third. Second and third place both had the small home field advantage in the playoffs, the only difference was the amount of prize winnings for final placement on the leaderboard. But these two powerhouse teams clearly didn’t need to worry about this small amount of prize money, and of course Tyranny wouldn’t overexert themselves during this time.
They of course wouldn’t throw their match with 301, but it was natural that they wouldn’t play this match with the same perseverance and energy that they would for the finals. The modern competition format was simply this prolonged, and it didn’t make sense to require the full effort of all players at all times.
With all of these factors tangling together, the future situation only grew more complex and confusing.
Just two rounds left!
This is what all the teams were telling themselves. After two rounds, the line between heaven and hell would be determined.
May 29th, Round 37 of the regular season began. Happy’s away game against Wind Howl became the broadcasted match for this round. Wind Howl’s home stadium was completely filled, without an empty seat in sight. Ever since Wind Howl switched to their one-on-one team playstyle and began winning again and again, everyone from players to fans became energized, and even their chant of winning the championship was brought out once more. And this round, their opponent was the team that had previously swept them 10-0, Team Happy. The stadium was filled with hostility, and as soon as Happy’s players entered the field, they were surrounded by booing.
Ye Xiu was once again first up in the individual competition. 35 consecutive wins, the media no longer had the strength to emphasize this incredible feat. This season’s King of Dueling award would undoubtedly go to him, as his individual record this season was so far ahead of everyone else’s. As for who had the second-best score, everyone was too lazy to care, since there wasn’t any meaning in comparing them anyway. Right now, everyone was waiting to see whether Ye Xiu could ultimately complete the feat of 37 consecutive wins, and some were beginning to sigh about how Ye Xiu hadn’t played in the individual round in Round 1. Otherwise, he’d have 38 rounds – that wouldn’t be called consecutive wins anymore, he would have won all of them, every single one. This score could never be surpassed, only tied, unless the Alliance once again expanded and added more teams.
“Ye Xiu is already on the field. This is his thirty-sixth individual battle, and up to now he was already won thirty-five consecutive. Will his record end here? Who will Wind Howl send up to meet him? Will their captain Tang Hao himself face him?” After Ye Xiu came out, Pan Lin began to shift the audience’s attention toward Wind Howl’s player. In the end, Wind Howl’s first player for the individual round: Liu Hao.
“Liu Hao, it’s Liu Hao! Wind Howl’s vice-captain Liu Hao, former vice-captain of Excellent Era. To send him against Ye Xiu, is it because he understands him? Does he have some grasp of this match? Will Ye Xiu’s consecutive win record end by the hand of his former lieutenant Liu Hao?” As soon as Pan Lin saw this player coming forward, he grew excited. This was something to talk about! The media loved this kind of battle, where there was a lot to talk about.
“Mm, it’s no secret that Ye Xiu goes first in the individual competition. So most teams would address this in one of two ways. They could try the Tian Ji Horse Race strategy, and just let Ye Xiu win the first match, or they could send a strong player who actually has a chance of taking him out. No matter what, Liu Hao isn’t a throwaway player for Wind Howl. His appearance now means they have some sort of plan against Ye Xiu,” said Li Yibo.
“Has Liu Hao discovered the way to defeat the unspecialized Lord Grim?” Pan Lin exclaimed.
“Let us wait and see!” Li Yibo hurriedly said, fearing that Pan Lin would want him to make a analytic prediction. This was Ye Xiu’s match. Predict the outcome? Don’t joke around.
Soon, the first individual match officially began.
“It’s not a direct confrontation,” Li Yibo immediately concluded, after looking at the map selected. “This map is pretty typically suited for a Spellblade. The distance between obstacles matches very well the attack range of a Spellblade.”
“As expected, Liu Hao came prepared!” Pan Lin exclaimed.
“Come on! Let me see how much you’ve grown these past two years.” As soon as the match began, Ye Xiu spoke in the chat.
“Haha, I welcome the teachings of my old captain,” Liu Hao replied, polite and modest, in an extremely composed demeanor. In reality, he was about to explode.
I’m not a student in Excellent Era’s training camp anymore. I’m not Excellent Era’s benchwarmer substitute anymore, or Excellent Era’s player at all. I’m not under your authority anymore, Ye Xiu. I’m Team Wind Howl’s vice-captain, an All-Star player this season. But you, you, on what basis are you still acting so high and mighty? You want to see how much I’ve grown? Do I need your comments anymore?
I’ll show you how much I’ve grown.
Liu Hao’s Spellblade Absent Sun decisively advanced, without retreat, along the center road.
This was the name of this 1v1 map. Stone pillars, each as thick as a person, were distributed quite densely along this map. No clash could avoid hitting them; places for cover were everywhere.
Absent Sun quickly arrived at the center road, but when he looked around, he didn’t see any sign of Lord Grim.
“Old captain, how come you’re not here? This isn’t your normal style!” Liu Hao immediately said in the chat.
“Of course not, my style adapts to local conditions!” Ye Xiu quickly responded.
Where is he?
Liu Hao purposefully acted relaxed in chat, but in reality he was very nervous. Dealing with sneak attacks on this map would be a headache. Liu Hao didn’t let Absent Sun just stand around waiting, and so he also prepared to sneak attack the opponent, and began to move carefully alongside a stone pillar.
About twenty body-lengths away, a silhouette flashed through the stone pillars, instantly going from behind one to behind another. Liu Hao immediately adjusted his camera view, capturing this rare clue.
Liu Hao stared at that one stone pillar. Lord Grim was right behind it. Absent Sun began to carefully move in that direction. On this map, Liu Hao was unafraid of a direct confrontation.