The Empire 6.1

Alan tapped his foot as a multi-tentacled alien setup his new capsule. The rank A capsule was near twice the size of the old one but had the same smooth, metallic grey sheen. It also had a larger black box attachment. A small Enforcer drone watched the installation process.

The alien worker might be sentient, but it could just as easily be a synthesized biological being. For safety concerns, robots couldn’t do certain types of delicate capsule work. Alan supposed preventing robots from doing certain types of technical engineering might help delay an uprising, but it wouldn’t stop one.

The alien maneuvered tools and wires into the capsule, not bothering to look inside. Despite all of Eve’s and Lambda’s teachings, Alan couldn’t recall any information on this particular species.

That might be because he was now in real life, without his machine lord implant, but Alan should remember any important engineering races. Though, most of the beings that Eve and Lambda taught him about were humanoid. Ælves, Haxlards, Predecessors, Erudites, Hunaan, they all were bipedal beings with large brains. The universe should have more diverse types of sentient life, though Alan supposed capsule technology might lend itself best to certain evolutionary tracks. But what, then, happened to all the other species of aliens?

Alan waved his hand through the air. There was still an odd sensation of lag, of momentary delay between when he wanted his hand to move, and when it actually did, but it had lessened since the last time he’d been in real life. Whether it was due to hitting the level 1000 mark or the points put into boosting his attributes, Alan felt that he was noticeably stronger than when he was a vanilla human but still weaker than his in-game self. The rank A capsule would allow greater strides forward in reality too.

Already, Alan’s ability to multitask had improved substantially. It wasn’t quite thinking two separate thoughts, but he could follow the alien while thinking about other things as well.

Once the alien finished the installation it left, the Enforcer drone following behind. Not a single word was exchanged in the entire process, though Alan received a message on his tablet that the installation was finished. There was no mention of a rating or sending feedback. Customer service didn’t matter when there was only one service.

After Lambda was transferred between capsules, Alan installed a basic, blank AI onto the new capsule as well. Unfortunately, the webpage Alan had found with instructions on how to create Eve was gone, as well as his old repository. In fact, Earth’s entire internet had apparently been replaced with the worldnet, a new internet that had been set-up by the United World Government with the most up to date protocols used by the globalnet and its counterparts. Without the source code, Alan had no confidence in his ability to create an Eve 2.0. Thus, until he found a better AI, a basic program was what Alan had to settle for.

The AI amounted to a more advanced calculator, its base programming provided by Lambda. It would run basic calculations that Lambda was “too good for,” effectively a slave server. It couldn’t think for itself, in fact, Alan was pretty sure it had no sense of self. The new AI was secure and predictable: Alan knew all the code and data that went into it. Or, at least, it was available to him and he could look over it when he found the time.

Next, Alan set up the old rank B capsule to be an emergency backup for Lambda to jump to, then disconnect from the Game if it was ever required. Lambda had drilled the process into him, and Alan jury-rigged the capsule as successfully in real life as he had within one of the Game’s simulations. Tools and materials hadn’t been hard to get in real life, just a quick order through the Game, setting Alan back a few thousand credits. Lambda had said the order might raise a few flags, but everything that Alan did was technically allowed.

The next part was trickier. Alan needed to hide the old capsule within the room, but at the same time set it up so that the wires leading to and from the two capsules wouldn’t be easily traceable or tracked. Alan thought this was probably overkill, but Lambda made him promise he’d do it. The actual hiding involved ordering a series of upgrades, transforming his apartment from a one-capsule bachelor’s pad to a more respectable gaming den. The Black Rose guild didn’t care if Alan made adjustments to his quarters, he’d checked.

The construction would be fast and cheap, made to Lambda’s specifications, built while Alan was in the Game. Somehow, the types of materials and configuration of the room would create a blank spot in Enforcer’s scanners, masking the old capsule’s presence.

Alan climbed into his new capsule as soon as the work order was confirmed. Though he was now in Khersath, it still took nearly an hour to log into and out of the Game, which meant that including the time it took for his new capsule to be installed, Alan had lost nearly a day of in-game time.

Alan sank into the silver bed of nanites and took a deep breath.

***

A series of messages popped up once Alan logged back in. His connection to the Game felt stronger, like his place in the world was somehow set in stone.

As he’d exited the Game in an Administrative Center capsule, an Administrator was in his Home, standing motionless next to the Citadel’s command table. Alan read over his messages:

[Rank A Capsule has been installed successfully.

+1000 Computational Energy, +.12 Regen / Sec

New implants available.]

[AI Lambda upgraded to rank A.]

[A new AI has been installed. Do you wish to name the unknown AI?]

[Multiple player messages received.]

“Lambda?” Alan called out. The messages he’d received were from Aurora, demanding he return to the guild as soon as possible.

Lambda entered the control room holding a small silver ball, the new AI in tow. It looked like an Administrator, but male.

Alan examined Lambda and the new AI’s stats, but found the details lacking:

[Lambda, Rank A AI.

Attack rank: B. Predecessor strength.

Defense rank: S. Predecessor defense.

Movement rank: A. Predecessor speed.

Special Abilities: ???]

[Unnamed AI. Rank Unknown.

Attack: None.

Defense: 1500 armor.

Health: 20000

Special Abilities: ???]

“The blank program you provided me with was for an Administrator?” Alan asked.

“An older version, but essentially yes,” Lambda said. “Want to see them mate?”

“That isn’t possible,” Alan said.

“No, but it’d look funny,” Lambda said. He threw the silver ball he was holding at the Administrator and it expanded into a thin metal dome, enclosing the Administrator.

“This,” Lambda said, “is my multi-tool. It’s a malleable piece of code that I can manipulate into multiple configurations. This dome stops whatever is inside from sensing and transmitting information and has decent barrier capabilities. AIs are generally constrained to a single tool of choice, and I had to keep mine in storage due to all the space Eve was hogging in the capsule.

“My tool, however, is better than the rest, adaptable to fit your needs. Great for offense, defense, scouting, whatever the situation calls for. I’ll send you a data file with the details.”

“Why doesn’t a message appear when I examine your tool?” Alan asked, wincing at the phrasing.

“Eve was updating all that, but that’s what the workhorse is for. Before we get to them, though, we should talk,” Lambda said.

Alan narrowed his eyes. “Let me guess, you have some hidden motives too.”

“Me? No, never,” Lambda said. He covered his heart in mock indignation. “Like I said from the start, I’m here to have a good time, to get away from the monotony of work. Alan, you know enough of the Game to see how it’s played for the most part. The question is, how are you going to win?

“There are two paths you can take. A solo route or a group route. Right now you seem set on a solo route, but that’s about a million times more difficult to pull off. Who’s ever won a war all on their own? Eventually, you’ll earn enough enmity and notoriety that the Administrator guild will also turn on you. The limitations set on drones make it virtually impossible to create an army by yourself, which means you’d need to somehow bypass the rules or become a transcendent-like being, and I don’t see either option panning out.”

Alan thought over Lambda’s words. They seemed logical.

“The Game is designed to force you to depend on others,” Lambda said. “Look at the Black Rose guild, each member of the Council has a unique responsibility and specialty. Given the nature of the Game, where betrayals can be rewarded without a fear of real death, trust is hard to earn and almost impossible to regain. Don’t throw it away without reason.”

Lambda rested his hand on Alan’s shoulder.

“Look, I can sense your surface thoughts, and I need to head off this problem before it becomes an issue,” Lambda said. “Yes, Eve betrayed you. Yes, pretty much everyone in the Game will also betray you if it becomes advantageous. But you still need to have trust in someone, or some group, at some point. Because you cannot win this Game solo.”

“There are no absolutes,” Alan said. He moved Lambda’s hand off his shoulder.

“Focus,” Lambda said. “Don’t let emotion cloud your judgment, harder does not equal better. Right now you want to do whatever it takes to win, but you need to stay objective. Long-term cooperation can benefit you more than it will harm you, and remember the Black Rose guild has taken steps to ensure that any betrayal will cost you. Phantom has a bloody kill switch installed in your head.”

“So I make sure any betrayal is never discovered,” Alan said.

“Failure is always a possibility, you need to plan for as much as you can,” Lambda said.

“What are you trying to do?” Alan asked.

“I’m trying to get you to see logical conclusions, to prove that you can put your faith in me, but right now you’re still letting yourself be thrown off by Eve’s betrayal. You’re in no fit state to be making any decisions,” Lambda said.

Alan took a deep breath, sitting down on the floor. Was he still angry? Absolutely. He tried to clear his mind, but the harder he tried to not think about Eve the more often she reappeared. After everything they’d gone through, after creating her, she’d abandoned him without a second thought. A simple utility calculation. Was that what he should become? A cold, calculating machine?

“You’re lost,” Lambda said, “you need a bit of perspective.”

Lambda touched Alan’s head.

There was nothing, and then a light. It was Alan, a single being on Khersath. Millions, billions, trillions of other lights appeared on the planet. Each light possessed their own desire, their own mind.

Time advanced, the lights spreading out across the cosmos. They lived full lives, lives of joy and sadness, order and chaos. Lives of connections, gathering and breaking away with each passing second.

And then the lights began fading. They winked out one by one. Every journey had to end. The lights disappeared. They were used up, fuel depleted. Alan felt each one go, trillions of attempts to break free, to become something more.

But there was no escaping the dark, no matter how brightly you shined. Death comes for all.

Alan felt a stream of tears flowing down his eyes. He wiped them away. “What the hell was that?”

“An information transference ability, modeled on how the Game grants skills. I can’t quite manage physical, hard memories, but I can transfer impressions, abstract ideas,” Lambda said.

Alan stared down at his hands. What was the point of anything? His struggle was futile. In the scope of such a vast universe, how could he even consider winning the Game? To make an empire that spanned a single galaxy, let alone the entirety of the Game, would be impossible. It was illogical to even try.

“Whoops, I may have overdone it. Here, let’s try this.” Lambda put his hand on Alan’s forehead again.

Once more there was nothing, and then a light, burning bright. The universe began anew, trillions of new lights appearing.

The bright light began to fade. It needed fuel. It moved over to a smaller, dimmer, light. It swallowed the light whole, fuel and all. And the fading light shone a little brighter, it grew a little larger. It would last a little bit longer.

The light needed more. It needed to last forever, to be the everlasting light. It began devouring other lights, and when one wasn’t enough it began to eat ten, twenty, a thousand at a time.

It grew brighter. And brighter. But still, it slowly dimmed. It needed more. More fuel to burn, more lights, more strength. It—

Alan pushed Lambda’s hand away. “Stop, no more. Next time you try some kind of alien psychiatric trick on me, ask first.”

“That wasn’t a trick, just a few kernels of Truth,” Lambda said. “No one knows the true path to Aleph, but they can be imagined, they can be sought.”

“Are you trying to induct me into a weird AI religion?” Alan asked.

“Is truth a religion? No, don’t answer that. The point was to clear your mind, and that, at least, worked quite well,” Lambda said.

Alan realized Lambda was right. Eve’s betrayal now felt like a lifetime ago. Alan shuddered. The knowledge, the memories now in his mind had changed him, perhaps irrevocably so.

He would burn bright.

“I would like to reiterate, warn me before you do anything like that again,” Alan said.

“Of course, but might I ask what your plans are now?” Lambda asked.

“We still might betray the Black Rose guild, but only if given the opportunity,” Alan said. “They aren’t the right group to try to win the Game with because they’ve stagnated for a while. The guild is running out of fuel, and fast. Void jumping ship, a suicidal alliance with the Empire against the Haxlards…”

Alan thought for a minute, processing all the information at hand. “The Empire, the Alliance, the Mercenary Bloc, everyone who’s been in the Game for long enough should know that major events will come, asked for or not. Their best bet would be to try to shape the event as well as they can, triggering it on their terms, with all the allies possible. Thus, it’s likely that the Empire is not facing the Three alone, but with the full support of nearly every other player. They want to swallow a larger enemy to burn on even longer.”

Lambda nodded. “Go on.”

“But they still aren’t favored to win a war,” Alan said. “Each of the Three can handle one of the major factions, and then there’s still the Haxlard forces. With a sucker punch, they might have a chance, given the available information, I’d say maybe 4.5% odds, which isn’t great.…But in the Game, the odds are always stacked against you. The tutorial, the academy, the abyss labyrinth, you aren’t expected to clear everything. It’s all a test to see how far you can go with what you’re given. A race against time, to become as strong as possible before you are, in turn, destroyed and used as kindling for someone else.”

Lambda smiled. It looked predatory, on the face of a Predecessor.

“By that logic, the core of any guild that I join or create to win the Game will need to be comprised of humans, or intelligent beings that join the Game later, or are able to escape notice like Void,” Alan continued. “That’s why Omega took a human’s form. We still have a few years to try to grow and become as strong as possible before we’re in turn raided for spare parts.”

“The United World Government is opposing the Haxlards too,” Lambda said.

“The UWG is an equal opportunity target; I’m already an enemy of the state, though ideally it would be best if the power level of humans as a whole increased. I should try to become a useful foil, forcing them to grow stronger as an adversary, but also feeding on the UWG in turn as they grow stronger,” Alan said. “I might as well play the hand that’s been dealt.

“There’s an obvious path forward then. We should secretly align with the Haxlards while fulfilling Black Rose guild duties, serving as a double agent, and trying to profit from the coming war as much as possible, but without ever being caught in an act of betrayal. Therefore, in case a miracle does occur, and the Empire or the Alliance or some entity does manage to defeat the Haxlards, we should come out okay. Actually, what does happen if a major event is cleared?”

“There’s a brief respite, and then another major event is triggered, often set in motion some time beforehand,” Lambda said. “I have come to similar conclusions, and agree with this course of action. I think a polite entreaty to Pharaoh with a bunch of hidden subtext about possibly being a double agent would be best. Let me phrase it. Communication is one thing I excel at, not that there’s much I’m bad at, mind you.”

“This is only a loose outline though, there are still a lot of pieces missing,” Alan said. “I need to adjust to combat without Eve, and you haven’t even shared everything you and the new AI can do. I’ll also need to find out all the information I can on the members of my guild, and be able to lie to them convincingly. Then there’s a ton of other factors when it comes to Earth I need to figure out…”

Alan droned on, gathered information, ran calculations, and plotted.

Lambda watched on, advising from the side.

And the unnamed AI sat still, doing nothing at all.

126 comments on “The Empire 6.1

  1. Ephemerality says:

    Sorry if this chapter feels a bit rushed, I get on a plane in a few hours.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Slipperyavocado says:

      It doesn’t feel rushed, I think the mood of it matches the feelings he would be going through at this point. I like the references back to aleph and can’t wait to see how his mysterious skill that eve couldn’t see comes into this.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Anon says:

        I agree. Does Lambda know about Alan’s data interaction skill? Maybe that would be a skill that gives Alan the ability to “bypass the rules.” Honestly I thought that skill was part of the reason he had such high combat ratings in the first place…

        Like

    • Willie Pierce says:

      Your fine

      Like

    • random says:

      I think what we really need soon is Alan showing off some of his new skills.

      Like

    • Corey Howard says:

      Rush the nexy chapter please, I binge read the whole series so far in 2 and a half days after reading the first page. This is the most amazing litRPG I’ve found and I need MOAR. If you need help writing and editing for release, hmu I’m godly with spotting errors

      Like

  2. Guny says:

    First!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Bogg says:

    Great!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Anonymous says:

    yay new chapter! and the start of a new arc!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Michah rutledge says:

    Great chapter. I agree it lacked a little meat, especially with all the delays (that was the longest day ever, at least 48hrs long 🙂 anyways I thought the way Alan handled the situation was only a little off from how he usually reacts and it might be good to go into more detail or emphasis on how lambda just changed the way Alan perceives the world. Seems like that should be a bigger deal. Can’t wait to find out about out new ai friend. Is there a way to change thier shape? Kinda tied of admins. Might be fun to have a robot dog or some kind of mythical monster themed ai.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Anonymous says:

    That took you TWO WEEKS!? Seems like a LONG time for a SHORT chapter.

    Like

  7. oblivious says:

    Reminds me of the broken Diplomacy rules in D&D 3rd edition. Lambda has enough skill ranks in Diplomacy that it’s indistinguishable from mind control.

    This seems like one of those situations where I didn’t see something coming but it feels like I should have. Eve and Lambda were two super-shady AI keeping each other in check. Now Eve is gone, and nothing is keeping Lambda in check. 170 even gave us that warning last chapter about corruption.

    Like

    • Michah rutledge says:

      I still don’t understand why corruption is lacked that way. Or was described as variation from the baseline of it’s original program, but that variation just means changes that were caused by experience. Why is that treated as a bad thing when Eve had way less Citroen and she betrayed Alan for omega, like it was nothing.

      Like

    • Jay says:

      I assume the corruption was what was in Eve, but you never know. Alan should check back in to see if the corruption is now gone..

      Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Well it was previously seen that Eve had more corruption than she should because of the haxlard ai merge, but lambda had over 60% when we saw his. In just curious what Eve’s was after visiting omega. He def checked when he was upgrading everything, but it was never said one way or another.

        Like

  8. Willie Pierce says:

    I liked the chapter seems like a lot of change is in the air.

    Like

  9. Jay says:

    I can’t decide if that last line is supposed to be poetic or ominous foreshadowing.

    Like

    • I took it as the new ai is just processing power for Alan and he is the one doing all of the work.

      Like

      • Jari Sundell says:

        I seemed pretty clear to me that Alan was using his own processing power, now having started to become what Cerberus said he would become during the training; machine lords do not just use the AI’s calculations, the player themselves start to perform AI-like processing of data.

        Notice how precisely he calculated the change of 4.5% from a large and uncertain dataset.

        Like

    • oblivious says:

      I think it’s supposed to emphasize that Lambda isn’t being kept in check, like Even might have done. I think the point is supposed to be that “the line” between persuasion and mind control is something we understand instinctively, not something defined logically. IMO if Lambda was overtly nefarious by giving Alan a trojan horse or something, it would undermine the point.

      Sort of like how Eve still says she’s pursuing Alan’s best interest, and she’s just best capable of doing this free from his ineptitude. Lambda is just offering advice, but he’s so good at showing you ‘the path from error to truth’ that it’s impossible to reject his advice.

      Like

      • Tehlu says:

        All i see is that the last line is contrasting the difference in theyr dynamics. Alan never planned, Eve did all the planning, and now thats changed. He’s actively planning, lambda is his advisor and where Eve would have taken over and told* alan what to do, this new AI has no opinions. Its all on Alan now, mistakes and all.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    hooray

    Like

  11. random says:

    This is only a loose outline though, there are still a lot of pieces missing,” Alan said. “I need to adjust to combat without Eve, and you haven’t even shared everything you and the new AI can do. I’ll also need to find out all the information I can on the members of my guild, and be able to lie to them convincingly

    Exactly how I feel :), though I think it made sense that this chapter came first.

    Like

  12. myIDID says:

    i see someone might be a fan of Jorge Luis Borges?

    Like

  13. Primus says:

    well better than nothing…
    not exactly sure about the right path to take though.. “yes realistically thinking, rationally planning playing both sides will be beneficial” Yet planning a betrayal, just cause some “stats” are against you is a bit of a bitch boy approach.
    Comma Alan is The Dude, who got into the guild by killing a super boss(remember that Epic moment oh it was stellar, cutting boss throat with his laser knife, and stealing the kill from slave players, just perhaps a last turn headshot would have topped that when falling into the beyond, what statistical probability would he have gotten then to get into the guild 1% , 0.1%?!), jumping into he beyond, and disappearing from guild members radar.. he would never never never never give up, neither should we(but guess what then he had no choice.. he had to win and get int he guild!! now he has a choice… and he can choose to give up or win). Even if the so called fake stats are stacked against us.. what if its propoganda, whats if its fake, you can give up and say yes statistically we will lose, and not even try.. or win against the odds.. like a boss. I think the AI has the right idea and somebody has to be betrayed, but perhaps it could be the haxlards hehe..
    yours truly, one and only.

    P.S. i’ts possible that lambda is just manipulating Alan, he got dumped by eve, so to feel better hell plan to dump someone else lol

    Like

  14. oblivious says:

    Some general thoughts about Arc 5 and The Gam3. Early in the series, dialogue could be weak. I think it’s since improved to the point that dialogue is no longer a weakness at all. I don’t recall any point in Arc 5 where dialogue was weak (I initially thought Eve was showing too much frustration with Alan, but it turned out that was going somewhere).

    The Gam3 has always had really fast pacing in a number of senses. Korean webnovels have a reputation for ‘cutting out the boring stuff,’ and I think The Gam3 is similar. More than the pacing of the plot though, we get really fast reveals of setting information or other revelations. This generally suits my preferences, but I think Arc 5 was too much. I believe this was done deliberately to give the feeling that Alan is in over his head and doesn’t have control, which matches well with the setting details about restricted information (an info-dump at level 1000 is inevitable). It still feels like stuff is revealed too fast.

    One of the consequences of this sort of pacing is that the chapters are extremely ‘dense.’ Every line is important in three different ways. This is really impressive and I personally enjoy puzzling out the details that have been seeded about ‘Translateral Absorbers’ and ‘Inner Networks.’ I feel clever when I realize that Power Armour probably has a lower energy regen than weapons because they have a passive power draw and the displayed value is net (regen minus draw), or that non-humanoids might have their own instance of the Game. Even if I’m wrong, it’s gratifying in a way. But again, I think Arc 5 was a bit too dense in this stuff.

    I have to imagine that it’s extremely difficult to to write something so dense and meticulous. As I say, it’s exactly the sort of thing I like and The Gam3 is impressive on that score. That said, I think there’s a point where there’s value to padding things out a bit more. This is weird for me to say because I hate things that are too padded out. I think most tv series’ should cover the same material in half as many episodes, for example. In the case of The Gam3, though, I think the work might actually improve with the addition of some lower-effort scenes that don’t need to serve any purpose beyond showing how Alan relates to or perceives people/places/things. Or just some fun fight scenes.

    This is mainly just a criticism of Arc 5. I liked Alan’s pseudo-dates with Daisy in arcs 1 and 3, and Alan sniping bandits in arc 4. Maybe that stuff was more purposeful than I see, but I thought it was fun and worthwhile even if it just showed Alan relating to the people and places around him. Honestly, I liked the webnovel intro for the first book better than the more succinct novel version. I think padding things out with these kinds of scenes might be worthwhile, even if it means that setting revelations or themes need to be spread out over more books. Especially if it makes the books easier to write. (I don’t mean to be presumptuous about what kind of difficulties Cosimo is having with his target schedule, but I imagine the level of meticulous detail in every scene must contribute).

    Liked by 1 person

    • bradyad says:

      I agree with this, well put. Some of my favorite moments in the first 2 books are these “padded” ones. One of the great joys of leveling based games and stories is the ability to revel in new skills and d capacities.
      I love the way he’s on to the next big plans here, makes sense. I do, however, hope we get some time of him showing off his new skills (lvl 1000 stuff, machine empath, rank A AI and capsule) in a way that gives us a moment to appreciate how far he’s come.
      To me, the sniping scene on Earth and guild tryouts/rogue spider test were good examples of this earlier. I like the general shift of tone as things escalate, but could use some more action fun too.

      Like

  15. Clearscreen says:

    Enjoyed the chapter.

    To be honest i think the way that eve’s code is suddenly lost is not a good point. All decent programmers and/or pc enthusiasts know to keep multiple backups of every thing. even a offline copy somewhere.

    Maybe Rewrite this so that the game refuses to implement Eve’s code again as this is a duplicate of the original. rather than just saying the original code is lost.

    The blank AI is a good step but maybe the MC could do more to customize the AI to fit his needs.

    But overall new arc starts and i can’t wait for the next chapter.

    Like

    • Jay says:

      I took that to mean that it was “lost” intentionally by someone, probably Omega.

      Like

    • Michah rutledge says:

      It’s hard to think of everything, especially in a game. Just think how many people have been responsible for world of Warcraft over the years. Id like an older version of her, from right after she was made that was given a different personality and avatar.

      Like

  16. Cody. says:

    Yeah chapter is finally hear whoooo.
    Its short chapter for this author but still a good read looking foreword to next chapter hopeful not such a long wait.
    Also great he finally got upgrade A capsule let the good time’s roll. Question is higher grade capsule or is that max level?.
    (Note=Surprised not added to table of contents this chapter at this time).

    Hope he also does more by him self too been reliant on offers for too long.

    Like

    • Anonymous says:

      Alan only found an Rank A capsule on the open market he did look for Rank S but no leads. That levee room for improvements to an Rank A capsule to be converted to an Rank S.

      Like

  17. CCaprice says:

    Thanks for the chapter.

    Like

  18. Anonymous says:

    who voting for a funny name for the new AI like BOB.

    I think that Alan at some point in time will custom the new AI to something more useful. I’m also hoping that he gets access to the operation system of the new AI. So that the cyber space changes to a city around Alan base. Then Alan changes his base into an all black pyramid with every thing inside for security. Or changes to an underground base like the guild.

    Like

    • I’m voting for a name that’s tribute to earthen lore (since he’s tryna help earth out)

      Something like Ananke ” is a personification of inevitability, compulsion and necessity.”

      or

      Minerva “goddess of wisdom and the Roman equivalent of Athena. Apollo, Greco-Roman god of light, knowledge, intellect, and the sun.”

      Yes… I want his new AI to be female!

      Like

  19. Anonymous says:

    the intelligence stat is Alans biggest friend right now since not only would it help him scheme but it would help him learn things more quickly using the limited time he has. intelligence would also help him manage more things at one time making him a better commander/glass cannon/super hacker/politician. he needs to focus on mods or genetic implants that make him just as smart if not smarter than other races (maybe have an erudite brain transplant) it would most like also increase computation and boost hypercognition (assuming he ever gets it back).

    Alans most dangerous ability is coding and assuming he learns how to forge or craft mechs he can literally make and code his own AI (low sentience/controlled) army much like phantom controls enigma.
    He could create an army like the Necrons from WH40k he could literally take over the earth himself and set up his own empire based around it. if he became good enough at the board game (lambda as teacher) he could apply his hacking battlefield tactics to the game and even real life if necessary.

    If he took over the planet using mechs he could then hand over the planet to the administrators or revenant thus making it a neutral or dangerous territory and increasing humanities status to friendly with the a huge faction at the same time.
    through his research into mechs he could evolve humanity himself with the help of the admins or revenants into more of a cyborg like race thus speedily upping humanity quickly and efficiently.
    If he becomes good enough at coding he may be able to modify genetic code eventually and upgrade humanity through both genetics and technology.
    As for psionic power the Chinese colony on mars were finding ways to unlock their abilities through physical exertion so it may be possible for humanity to be a hybrid race with three specialties.
    I have a theory that soulsteel is made by condensing soul power into the blood and then compacting the blood from a liquid to a solid to make soulsteel (this process would take a huge amount of time especially with low level) so humanity may be able to make their own soulsteel…eventually…or by making a company that employs people to focus on concentrating their blood and selling it much like plasma thus expediting the process (one predecesser takes a thousand years to from anything but what about 10,000 humans in 1 year).

    basically the world you have set has a crap ton of potential and I am wondering what the limits and how far they can be pushed. (I have probably spent too much time thinking about The Gam3, love your work though)

    Like

    • Willie Pierce says:

      He can’t make comba drones in those numbers

      Like

      • Anonymous says:

        they are not drones they are subordinates that posses their own individual AI instead of being remotely controlled… He would be the human equivalent of the Weaver (im not sure what the grunts that the weaver sends out are classified as but Im thinking it uses some kind of exploit or terminology so it can zerg rush it enemies, maybe Alan can use the same tactic or take over the weaver itself)

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        The book specifically says there are rules against making AI dont roles combat drones beyond like 1 or 2.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        The Weaver was a part of the game since before the drone wars when those rules were put into effect and many readers think it’s one of the lords of life and is above the rules

        Like

      • Anonymous says:

        materials would be the hardest to obtain but if his guild survives and he becomes a knight plus the heist with Thiago he will have a ton of money. or he gets a large payout for his betrayal.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        No the hardest part is getting another warning from the admins or deleted by the admins for breaking game rules.

        Like

      • Anonymous says:

        If the weaver can produce units then it stands to reason that Alan can too we just dont know how yet im hoping the Author will enlighten us the manufacturing and operating procedures of the weaver and if Alan can use it to his advantage. its a game after all maybe their is an exploit somewhere.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        No lamda already went over this

        Like

      • Anonymous says:

        pasted from ch 5-13

        The godlike existence was only known as the Weaver, and in-game limitations on autonomous forces didn’t seem to apply to them.

        I want to know why this is and if it can be taken advantage of. I doubt its as simple as the level of power it has or else all Alan needs to do is become powerful. lets try to think outside the box here people, Alan already said that his biggest payouts came from taking risks, so maybe this is a big risk that Alan can take for now Im just theorizing based on the information ive been provided (so far). I am also aware of the lambdas warning to Alan about only having one drone. but there may be a workaround somewhere.

        Like

      • Jay says:

        Just.. no..

        The Weaver is understood to be special. If and when Alan can get to the point where he can literally rewrite the game rules in his favor, he’ll be Neo, not the leader of a drone army in a universe we’ve been told several times disallows drone armies.

        And, um, Alan doesn’t control the Abyss Prison 🙂

        Like

      • Jay says:

        Also, I’m happy to report that the plot arcs are not subject to democratic rule 🙂

        Like

    • Anonymous says:

      Also the Abyss prison contains advanced technology that Alan can use to build his army or upgrade himself or his armor, eventually he will need to learn how to start making his own stuff.
      Especially if he betrays the guild and is discovered or wants to make better stuff than what phantom gives him.
      Alan is reliant on others for all of his stuff which is ok since they are better than him at maths and have more resources but he will be limited by the people he relies on and their resources (which explains why he is planning to betray them).
      long term it is better for Alan to learn things and advance a field of study himself rather than waiting for someone else to do it and then waiting for them to decide to include Alan assuming they are not using Alan either or he trusts them.

      Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        I think he needs to use GP (since they won’t give him the credits.) to buy forge files from the guild. But before offering to pay he needs to try to convince phantom to give him a few.

        Load all that shit into his cyberspace.

        If he could get a forge file for a forge…..

        Like

      • Jay says:

        .. then it would still require forge files to make stuff 🙂

        His Citadel essentially *is* a virtual forge already.

        Like

    • Anonymous says:

      he does not need to own the abyss to explore and collect resources and this is the MC in a book not real life, Alan already has a game breaking ????? ability and usually MC’s are special existences which is why they were the MC in the first place otherwise we would be reading the story of ordinary man and his ordinary adventures in average scenarios with predictable results. also just because an idea was presented does not mean it has to be accepted it was just some food for thought that someone left for the Author to chew on.

      Like

  20. Anonymous says:

    I vote that the new AI is called Snape and he for some reason hates magic/psionic users and snakes.(Alan must have messed up his coding somewhere lol).

    Like

  21. Anonymous says:

    Need more chapters…

    Like

  22. Ephemerality says:

    As people may have guessed I probably won’t get a chapter out today. Travelling internationally may have inadvertently triggered a few health problems…

    Like

    • Anonymous says:

      hope you get well soon.

      Like

    • Michah rutledge says:

      Man, i try to be understanding, but it’s like every week with some lame excuse. Do you even like writing? It really shouldn’t be this hard. I follow a few authors that release several times a week, like it’s something they love. With you it’s like pulling teeth.

      Like

      • Anonymous says:

        give the man an break.

        Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Dude I’ve been where you are half a dozen times, telling people to chill. Now i understand they frustration. Go back to previous posts. They are almost all delayed and a bunch of them are itty bitty, considering it took him a month to write. I think he should seriously consider handing this series off to a more diligent author. I emailed olan thorenson the other day, and book 4 is almost done, and will be a conclusion, so maybe see if he’d do it.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        Maybe you should consider him as a monthly poster and not worry so much about it

        Like

    • Anonymous says:

      ^ meant to be a reply to the main comment below I also hope you get well soon

      Like

  23. Evan Johnson says:

    Cosimo,

    I recently re read the entire story, and one huge thing jumped out at me. In the comments section of almost every post you are apologizing for “being late”. You need to stop doing that, noone is setting deadlines for these releases but you, and setting a hard deadline for a creative project is always a recipie for disappointment.

    Thing is, you’ve done something that 99% of your readers are literally incapable of doing. Written a GOOD story, and had the balls to publish it. Most other LITRPG writers I read move their stories from the free venue (Blog, Royalroad, etc) to paywall sites like Patreon at that point, but you are still generous enough to release chapters to us here for free.

    I love the story and where it’s headed, but seriously, stop listening to the rabble, and never feel guilty or apologize if a chapter takes you longer than you expected. We will all still read it when it hits, and most of us appreciate that sometimes quality is more important than quantity.

    Like

    • Chance says:

      I approve of this message

      Like

    • Evan Johnson… You deserve a cookie.

      Ephemerality you are an inspiration, and someone who’s achieved something spectacular. You have gotten me into a completely new Genre of books, and yours is by FAR better than all of the LITRPG’s that I’ve read thus far.

      Quality>Quantity

      #respect

      You are my hero!

      Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        I am physically unable to back down from a fight, so I’m compelled to mention d. Rus, aleron kong, and g. Akella as just as good or better. Certainly more prolific and of similar or better quality. Cosimo has a rich world, full of potential and entertainment, I’m just so tired of his hollow excuses and all the waiting…

        Like

      • Chance says:

        You literally have the option of not reading the book or waiting until it comes out. Wait like everyone else and stop complaining.
        Otherwise don’t read it if you dislike the schedule so much

        Like

      • Adny says:

        I wish this story would get turned into an anime. It’s literally the best story I’ve ever read personally.
        If this was turned into a visual media, I have no doubt it would be more popular than 90% of what is out now. (Prvoided the artwork isn’t crap, and it follows the books without cutting things out.)

        Like

    • random says:

      I completely agree with Evan Johnson. One example is Mother of learning where the author simply has the date for the next chapter on his page(around 1 every month maybe not sure). Sometimes he just changes the date, to a later point in time.

      Like

  24. Clearscreen says:

    I agree too. I enjoy the story and yes i do feel boered by not getting a chapter but i understamd that it takes time to write. And i will wait for the next chapter.

    But also if you cant post a chapter like once a month just pop up and give us a post that you are still alive and writing.

    I normally re-read everyting once a new book is released anyway….

    Like

  25. I can understand what you’re saying, the most troublesome thing is actually the schedules he doesn’t accomplish, the excuses and the lack of info on him and the chapter.
    I’d be glad if he just makes a longer schedule for himself and come say something once in a while, the constant apologies for being late are driving me crazy, and after some time they just feel like excuses(they might not be).
    I’ve seen too many people lose their public because of stuff like this, it builds animosity, even if it is unreasonable, the reason why they still come here is because they love the story and only YOU the author can give it to them, if this was a web novel translation site and not an original one….. Someone might have already taken this project from you, I’ve seen it before…..
    Please, just don’t make promises when you know you can’t accomplish then….

    Like

  26. Anonymous says:

    Just checking this website for the Nth time today still no update 😦

    Like

  27. Cody. says:

    This. Chapter still needs at this time to be added to the table of content’s. As have to at this moment go through last chapter to find link to this one.

    Like

  28. justafan says:

    just checking. I’m bored.

    Like

  29. The Audiobook is up for Pre-Order! 11/07!

    Like

  30. Still no updates… God i hate that he is the author of this great story… Yall remember when he litterally dissapeared for 6+ months, because I do.

    Like

    • Jay says:

      Yeah.. I think the PR problem is that he posts things like

      “As people may have guessed I probably won’t get a chapter out today. Travelling internationally may have inadvertently triggered a few health problems…”

      and then vanishes, even though the implication of the post is that the chapter is almost ready. That was about 10 days ago.

      Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Drives me effing nuts! I really don’t think that he likes writing very much, but feels obligated now that he has a fan base. For most people with his talent it’s like a passion. They have to get it on paper. But i seriously doubt this dude has ever had more than one chapter ready by his deadline. I just hope that if he ever gives up he at least releases his notes, or something. I still have no real clue where the story is going or what Alan had planned to “win”.

        Like

    • Cody. says:

      Yeah, its annoying.

      Like

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, it’s bad that chapters don’t come out when they’ve been promised; but you’ll be happier if you just ignore the promises and think of them as CGP Grey videos: they have no schedule, and when they come they’re always a happy surprise.

      Like

  31. Anonymous says:

    Just passing the time, i was writing a story only dune the first chapter and i found that i suck bad at writing. Anyway I should start writing code more.

    Like

  32. Willie Pierce says:

    Then stop reading it’s that simple. Move on until the book comes out.

    Like

  33. This is probably it for me……
    Too tired of waiting for something that never comes, I’m dropping it….
    Just like I did with change: New World, The Zombie Knight and Those who aspired to become gods…..
    They make a stupidly long hiatus and then come back promising releases, just to stop again, because they know that people love their storys too much to simply drop then forever, without looking back…..

    Like

    • Willie Pierce says:

      Waves have fun

      Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Your mom has fun! Saying ef you to dedicated fans is literally the worst thing you could do. I hate cosimo with my entire being, but I’d never want him to lose his reader base. I want him to give us updates, not excuses. If he hates writing, like i suspect, i want him to pass his notes and ideas to a capable writer. Not stop the series.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        People like that one typically either will continue to read or they were already planning on stopping

        I get so ducking tired of all these assholes constantly bitching and moaning.

        Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Kind of like how the author complains about his awesome chance to experience another culture, then uses his poor life choices as an excise to be months behind on chapters he has promised? I wonder exactly how many chapters he would be behind of he lived up to his self imposed obligations (notice i don’t say he owes us anything because it’s his works. I just want him to stop literally lying and bitching/moaning about literally fucking airplane food. God my arms are tired)

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        Ehh I can’t from the 80s when you had no clue about an author or their schedule. So now any update is a bonus.

        Like

  34. Cody. says:

    William he does keep on saying releasing and doesn’t so hardly surprising it ticking a lot of people of.

    Like

    • Willie Pierce says:

      Are you trying to reply to me.

      If so you typed the wrong name.

      And if so.

      I don’t care what dates he puts out.

      I just subscribe to the site and when a new chapter gets posted I read it.

      Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Yeah William. I’m never upset when people consistently don’t do what they promise they will do. Like a bad boyfriend that constantly says they will be better this time… Again.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        So apparently you can’t read.

        My name is not William in any form

        And honestly relax it’s a free book.

        Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        It’s a free book on this site, William. But this is just where he tests his ideas, William. I buy both the book and audio book, and when he takes forever to post on here, it means the final product takes longer too, William 🙂

        Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Why are you upset that people are changing Willie too William btw? What other name could it be?

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        My name is actually Willie.

        If you had any idea how many times I’ve had to take my birth certificate places to prove I didn’t lie on a government form.

        And yes when I was in the military I was accused of falsifying government documents more than once. It got so bad that I ended up requesting a certified copy along with my social security card was just included in my SRB packet.

        And the number of times I’ve had douchebags assume it was William and then go… are you sure it’s not William. If it was oh sorry my Fuck up. But no assholes who make the mistake like to pretend like they are the one in the right. When I could more easily get away with it more than once I ended up with bloody knuckles over the bullshit. If I fuck up a name I go hey sorry I suck at name pronunciation. But assholes who do it because they are to much of a bitch to admit they fucked up. They just need a good knee capping. Something that will make them limp for the rest of their lives.

        Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        That’s an unusual name, you have to admit. I think it is rather alarming that you seem see incensed at strangers on the internet not knowing your story, that you would think permanently crippling them was a valid option… On that note, I’d appreciate it of you’d not drag the army’s name through the mud, by associating it with your attitude. As am MP, i can confirm that you are the kind of person we try very hard to boot out or send to levinworth.

        Like

      • Willie Pierce says:

        Btw that wasn’t a threat. That’s what I used to do when I had way to much testosterone and not enough outlets.

        It irritates me that a jackass can’t read. But I’m not going to physically assault you over being stupid. I’m well past that in my life.

        Though I still wonder why anyone would bitch and whine over a free product.

        Like

      • Michah rutledge says:

        Yeah, bragging about how you got away with assaulting people over getting your name wrong, in the past, is way better. My bad. The way you speak just screams you need to be on a watch list.

        The internet was made so people could complain on it. You don’t have to agree.

        Like

  35. Cody. says:

    Now, now Willi, anyone going to be frustrated when constantly doing it.

    Like

  36. Ephemerality says:

    Well, it’s now 7 a.m. on Saturday and I haven’t finished the chapter, and it probably won’t be out within the next 24 hours. Also, oddly enough wordpress lets me see people’s IP addresses when they comment. Just an FYI.

    I see a few arguments popping up about my release schedule. Thank you to those defending me, but I really don’t need it so I’d say don’t waste your time. I’ve spent far too much time on the internet so anything short of literally swatting me doesn’t affect me much, which has helped when reading some reviews.

    I do think a little push from people to try to write faster helps, but a small part of me also wants to take longer just to piss people off and enjoys watching drama unfold online. (Don’t worry, I ignore that part. Usually.) As noted by others I have not been able to keep to deadlines very well. I want to change that, but I’d say at this point to treat it like Valve time (who knows when things will be released, but it will probably be late, and by setting your expectations low you’ll be pleasantly surprised when things aren’t late, and then devastated when it turns out they cancelled Half-Life 3).

    Like

    • Anonymous says:

      I just did some quick math and shock. The chapter are half the size so that is double the total time needed to write ark 6. around 26 chapter in ark 6 if there are half the size. Time Taken for each chapter is 2-3 weeks. quick math later over 1 year to finished ark 6 and for the book 3 unknown.

      Like

    • Michah rutledge says:

      See, you say it’s delayed, but wasn’t this chapter already late before you left for Japan? Hope that ip think was a reminder to the people threatening violence and not those expressing their opinions on you being late. You make a lot of excuses involving your health, but what is so hard about sitting on your laptop and banging out a few chapters, them releasing them on a regular schedule? I know not everyone can write a story as great as yours, if you have the talent, it can’t be that hard.

      Like

    • Cody. says:

      Lmao, I would probably do same..

      Like

  37. Anonymous says:

    Cosmo says on twitter he have trouble with writer block. Here is what i think should happen in the next chapter.

    1. Talk to sidestep to see about an in-plant psy based.
    2. go shopping with Aurora to change his home into an 60’s love pad. Or an man cave.
    3. get his machine lord in-plant in real life.
    4. let the battle with the weaver start.

    Like

    • Willie Pierce says:

      Personally setting up his home wouldn’t be a bad idea.

      Going to the market place and buying programs he can use for training. Simulators and the like and upgrade his home to run them. Do the simulation while his divided mind is working on tactics.

      He can’t convert his guild points to credits but he could buy forge files from phantom. Then load those forge files into his cyberspace.

      He could use this time to train his secondary AI on how to handle cyberspace actions as well. After a match his new AI review his memories and then they play again. And again.

      Like

      • Anonymous says:

        Shopping with Aurora to set up his home where he logs in / out , was talk about in ark 3.

        There should be 2 forge files that he should get from phantom are forge and a capsule to load in cyberspace.

        Like

      • Anonymous says:

        Also forgot about about the simulation forge file.

        Like

      • Anonymous says:

        After a bit of thinking the three forge files could have different effects in cyberspace. first the forge could make Weapons / Armour with the correct forge files. Also There would not be an energy charge with maintain of the weapons / Armour. Second The capsule could save / load programs as needed so there is lest cost spawning new programs. Lastly the simulation room could replace his advance training rooms. But he needs training software that he could buy or make.

        Like

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