It wasn’t until nearly a full hour later that he had finalized his entry for this contest. “Got it…” He breathed out a heavy sigh of relief, nodding towards the judge to let him know he was ready. Looking around, he gave a slightly awkward laugh. “Oh, was I the last one this time? Sorry, but like I said before, I think I’ve got this one.”
I shook my head at his seemingly extreme confidence, but soon the Keeper in charge announced that it was time to review everyone’s submissions. For fairness, he would take charge of all submissions, and display them anonymously for the rest of us to vote on. I had to admit, there were some pretty interesting submissions.
Aside from my own improved centaur race, two of the other submissions were also races. One was a psychic race, where every person would have a randomized psychic power, while the other was a shapeshifter race with the ability to copy memories from the people they mimic. Both were interesting, but neither of those got my vote.
Next, there were three item submissions as well. The first was a ‘dimension door’, which allowed people to step into parallel worlds similar to their own, with only minor differences based on a few distinct choices. Another was a status crystal, designed to display the abilities of the person who uses it as a numerical value. I would definitely be buying that one later on, when my world became more advanced. Finally, the last item submitted was a scroll designed for cultivation worlds. With it, one could sacrifice their life force and leave it as a legacy to help boost their successor.
Finally, the remaining four submissions were all systems. One was a quest function for game worlds, to allow people to issue official requests of each other, or post them in public places. I’d probably be getting that one, too. The next was a new type of afterlife, though the description made it seem almost identical to my Community Afterlife. To my surprise, there was a big, red ‘X’ on the top of the submission, likely to show that it was an invalid one.
The third system was actually a new system of magic, one that seemed similar to the theory of ley lines. With it, there would be rivers of magic running around the world, determining what spells could be cast where, and how easily they could be cast. And, proximity to a ley line would be required to cast a spell at all. I didn’t see this one becoming too popular.
Finally, the last system I looked at was also a magic system, though this one more flexible. The author had named it ‘Spell Weaving’, due to it being the ability to look at mana as a spool of thread, and spells being the shape you give it. Different knots for different elements or characteristics, with advanced spells looking like grand tapestries.
Although some of the others seemed interesting, and I would be personally getting them for Earth later, the Spell Weaving had definitely earned my vote. I’d honestly be surprised if it didn’t win. And, sure enough, after all ten Keepers had voted, a blue screen appeared in the center of the room to display the results.
Designer’s Game Poll Results
Dreyfus - Spell Weaving: 5 votes
EarthForceOne - Centaur+: 3 votes
Japsem - Status Orb: 1 vote
Krill - Parallel World Travel Door: 1 vote
NoMore - Quest System: 0 votes
ImaginaryFriend - Ley Lakes: 0 votes
Indiscriminate - Legacy Scroll: 0 votes
HiredHelper - Mind Mimic: 0 votes
Drillot - Psycher: 0 votes
MissBehave - Afterservice: X
Looking over the names on the list, I felt my eye twitch slightly. Who came up with these Keeper titles?
Nonetheless, after about thirty seconds of time for people to view the results, the judge Keeper called out. “And the winner is Dreyfus, with his Spell Weaving concept. You may all now submit your entries to the system.”
The ten of us nodded at him, doing so. To my surprise, I actually received a prompt immediately after I chose to submit it.
Congratulations! You have earned an achievement!
For creating a race with multiple distinct variations, you earned the Diversified achievement. +20 points
After everyone was done submitting their entries to the system, they turned to face the judge again. Well, aside from MissBehave, who was actually a man. A four armed, grey skinned man, but he seemed like a man nonetheless. He was just sulking because he realized that his submission had already been taken. Sorry~.
“Hmm, 130 points. This is within the acceptable limits of the contest, and as such, here is your prize.” The judge Keeper made a few hand motions, and the winner, the same overconfident man from before, let out a relieved smile.
“Sorry, guys. Been saving that idea for a few days for this contest. No hard feelings?” He looked at us, giving a small smile. The people present didn’t seem to really care that much, and simply shrugged it off before walking out the door. However, at the next moment, Dreyfus began glowing in a golden light for a few seconds, before confetti shot out from his body.
I could only blink in surprise, and I wasn’t the only one. Even Dreyfus himself was surprised. “Sweet, a special achievement!” He called out, seeming to look at a window that appeared for him.
Nodding to him to congratulate him, I also turned to leave the room. I guess some achievements give special effects, if they are unique enough? I wasn’t really sure, but either way I was done here. After the tournament for the Keeper Sim games, and this one, I had been gone for most of a day already. I wasn’t sure how long these things normally lasted, but I had had my fill for this one.
Besides, I wanted to get back and implement this new race. I foresaw some rather interesting characteristics from it. It would likely require quite a bit of work to stabilize their culture later on, but it should definitely be worth it.
Looking around, I had wanted to say goodbye to Grimor, but he was not anywhere in the hallway that I could see. And, given the large number of games, it was impossible to tell where he was. As such, I decided to just head on home.
To my surprise, and gratitude, the departure method this time was simply a glowing golden door opening in front of me. When I walked through, I heard the distressed cries of a certain loli. “Noo~! Stop it!”
Although I had appeared in the bedroom, Terra and Aurivy were nowhere to be found. Instead, I followed the source of the noise to the next room over. Before, this had been a completely unused room, to the point I had never even bothered looking in a second time. But now, the entire room had changed.
The walls were covered in pink wallpaper, and in the back of the room there was a large white canopy bed with red heart-shaped pillows. Currently, the two goddesses were standing near the bed, in front of a tall, wooden wardrobe. From what I could see, Terra was currently playing dress-up with the halfling goddess. Right now, she was wearing a frilly pink and white dress, with a hooked staff that made her look like a Little Bo Peep cosplay.
Seeing that, I couldn’t help but chuckle, getting the attention of both women. “Looks like I really missed something, huh?”
Aurivy looked at me with watery eyes, and dived to grab my legs in a tight hug. “Big bro, you meanie! Next time, take me with you!” She looked up at me, and I had to avert my gaze. Must not meet a crying loli’s eyes, or you will never be able to win.
“Did you have fun, Dale?” Terra asked with a small smile, sitting down on Aurivy’s bed.
“It was… interesting. I’m glad to be back, though.” I nodded, reaching down and petting Aurivy’s weak spot, getting a long, content sigh from the smaller goddess.
“Good. I saw that you submitted something to the system while you were gone. A new race you had an idea for, and wanted to try out?” She asked with a grin, seemingly happy at the idea to try out something new.
“That’s right. I figured this could be the tenth race for Earth. Though, I think we should give them that head start you taught me about, given that the other races have a thousand years of history under their belts already.”
Terra nodded at that. “Alright, I see your point. Well, do you want to get started, then?”
I nodded again. Since I had already submitted the species to the system, I knew what the price was for it. Although it was slightly more expensive than the other races, with a twenty-five point cost, it was not enough to drastically unbalance the race. Especially given their physical limitations, I was curious to see how they’d overcome it.
Terra stood up from the bed, and we walked over to our own room, causing Aurivy to let out a sigh of relief. On the way, Terra sniffed the air a couple times. “You made a new friend while you were gone?” She asked, glancing over to me.
“Hmm? Well, I guess so? There was a very friendly spider-girl, but I’m hoping that I don’t end up seeing too much of her…” I shuddered slightly. While not completely revolting, spiders were still creepy. Combining that with the personality of an over excited teenage girl, just feels wrong.
Terra giggled slightly at my response. “Ah, is that it? Well, no matter. I’m sure she’ll call later, if she wants to chat.”
“Right… speaking of which, I had a question that’s been bugging me for a while, and I figured only someone like you would be able to answer.”
Terra glanced over at me curiously as I moved to stand in front of my computer desk. “Hmm? What is it?”
“The Keeper titles. They’re inherited, like the worlds, right? But… they just totally don’t make sense. You’ve got things like Krill, or EarthForceOne, and completely random words or names. I was wondering how they were decided, that’s all.”
“Ohh… is that it?” Terra giggled lightly, covering her mouth. “Actually, Keepers didn’t always have those titles. Originally, Keepers were given numbers. For instance, Earth’s Keeper had previously been Keeper #2897. Two generations of Keepers ago, there was a message broadcast through the system, asking for a vote on if Keepers should get their own titles. The majority voted yes, so every Keeper was given a single chance to pick a title for themselves.”
My eye twitched slightly at that. “You mean, all of these Keepers with unfortunate names…”
Terra nodded with a grin. “That’s right… they just inherited the titles from a predecessor that chose poorly.”
“That… I don’t even. The excitement to find out, it just died.” I gave a heavy sigh as I sat down at my computer desk and prepared to get to work building up my new race of centaurs. Honestly, if the system had assigned those names randomly, that would have been interesting. I could have questioned what being came up with all the names, and how they were chosen.
But just to find out that, rather than some higher power naming us, it was the terrible naming sense of our predecessors… The hype is no longer real.