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[PP-F24] Wakey Wakey Eggs and Bakey (Jacob's Ladder)

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[This thread is open to members of Jacob's Ladder - Please remember that your character must be approved and converted to 3.0 before posting - This the takes place a couple of days after the floor 25 boss fight]

The sun was beginning to rise high in the spirits, and a cooling breeze rustled the red leaves of the trees surrounding the islands of Baldur's home and the Jacob's Ladder compound. It was difficult to tell where one ended and the other began, but that was by design. Some of the building of Baldur's home seemed to rise from the water of the lagoon, while others had large courtyards for training, and still more had beautiful zen gardens. It melded the beauty of the landscape with the man made structures.

Baldur sat there on the engawa, his sandals off to the side as his toes dangled into the water. He had picked up the shakuhachi, but without training in the craft he wasn't particularly good. Instead, he just sat there trying not to make obnoxious noises and learn how to actually play the instrument, rather than just letting the system do it for him.

He would have described it as a perfectly relaxing day. It was something everyone needed from time to time. Just a few days ago, they had all just risked everything in the floor 25 boss fight, and it had been a very different experience than anything that had come before. Apparently there had been a floor that everyone had tried to run from that somehow coincided with the boss fight. They all hadn't really had a chance to talk much, since not only had floors changed, but there had been some kind of a mass respec, and everyone was still getting settled. He couldn't blame everyone for taking their time getting here.

"Baldur-shishou, it looks like someone is ready for the boat. I'm going to go down and pick them up."

He was a good kid, one of the younger members of his dojo and the Jacob's Ladder guild. When they had the floor 25 boss meeting, he had made a name for himself by sheepherding players from the docks down on the floor and through the portal that takes you up to the island here where he would drop them off.

"Yes, thank you."

The boy gave him a quick bow and then ran down the boards of the engawa down to the dock to get the small boat to go and pick up anyone from the docks that wanted to come. The rooms at Baldur's house and the guild were used by some, but not everyone. Perhaps I can get Hirru to use Crow's old rooms.

Baldur Stats:


» Baldur, The Gaijin Samurai 27.thumb.png.ec78c6d8814af906b2414f224cfc88f2.png

  • Modified HP:
  • Modified EN:
  • Modified MIT:
  • Modified ACC:
  • Modified DMG: 25
  • Modified EVA:
  • Battle Heal:
  • Search:
  • Temp Buff: Medium Damage Potion x6->5| Rare T2 Item | +2 Damage
  • Temp Buff:
  • Temp Buff:
  • Temp Buff:
  • Temp Buff:

» Base Stats

  • Base HP: 820
  • Base EN: 96
  • Base MIT: 78
  • Base ACC: 5 (includes AA and does not automatically miss on 1s)
  • Base DMG: 23 
  • Base EVA: 2
  • Battle Heal: 41 HP
  • Keen: +1
  • Recovery: +4 EN

» Items Equipped:

  • Warden's Fury - Absolute Accuracy/2 Paralyze
  • Muramasa - Absolute Accuracy/Fallen/Blight/Burn
  • Ethereal Tether - Zanshin - Absolute Accuracy/Keen/Freeze/Burn
  • Montsuki haori - 48 DMG MIT/+1 EVASION/+4 EN RECOVERY
  • Emerald Magatama | Perfect | +3 Accuracy 
  • Hammerspace Backpack (HB) +1 BR item (allows stacks up to 7)

» Battle-Ready Inventory:

  • Medium Damage Potion x6 | Rare T2 Item | +2 Damage
  • Basic Teleportation Crystal x1 | Good Item | Teleports player to the Town of Beginnings
  • Max Mass HP Recovery Crystal x7 | Perfect T2 Item | +30*Target Tier (30/60/90)
  • Max T2 HP Recovery Crystal II x5 | Perfect T2 Item | +180 HP
  • Safeguard Potion x3 | Perfect Tier 1 | Safeguard
  • HB: Max Vitality Snack x2 | Rare Tier 2 | Grants +12 Energy
  • EWL: Medium Antidote Potion x1 | Rare Tier 2 | Immune to negative status effects for 2 turns
  • EWL: Muramasa 
  • EWL: Emerald Teardrop - +2 ACC/+1 EVASION
  • SC: : Warden's Fury

» Skills:

  • One Hand Curved Sword | Rank 1/5 | 
  • Katana | Rank 5/5 | 
  • Battle Healing | Rank 5/5 | 
  • Light Armor | Rank 5/5 | 
  • Charge | Purchased | 
  • Quick Change | Purchased
  • Extended Weight Limit | Purchased
  • Extended Mod Limit | Purchased

» Extra Skills:

  • Concentration | Equipped
  • Survival | Un-equipped
  • Meditation | Equipped
  • Parry | Equipped
  • Forgotten King's Authority | Equipped
  • Shatter | Not Yet Unlocked

» Mods:

  • Ferocity: Equipped
  • Stamina: Equipped
  • Meticulous: Equipped
  • Resolve: Equipped
  • EML: Emergency Recovery: Equipped
  • EML: Bull Rush: Equipped

» Housing Bonuses:

  • Rested: -1 EN on first 2 uses
  • Tasty: Turns 2 food into feast for 4
  • Advanced Training: +10% exp to a thread 1/month
  • Filling: Add 1 extra tier 1 slot to food
  • Item Stash: +1 BR item slot
  • Relaxed: OOC regen 5*tier, recover EN out of combat after 2 turns in lieu of 3
  • Angler: +2 Fishing EXP per fishing attempt


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Shield - HP:920/920 | EN:128/128 | DMG:1 | ACC:0 | MIT:167 | THN:88 | EVA:0 | BH:50 | LD:0 | V.D.:50 | HB:60 | TNT | ANT.FZ | GS:151 [17/17]
» Shield The Immovable Object
Modified HP: 920
Modified EN: 128
Modified MIT: 167
Modified ACC: 0
Modified DMG: 1
Modified EVA: 0
Battle Heal: 50
Loot Die: 0
Temp Buff:  
Temp Buff:  
Temp Buff:  
» Base Stats  
Base HP: 920
Base EN: 128
Base MIT: 167
Base ACC: 0
Base DMG: 1
Base EVA: 0
Battle Heal: 46
Loot Die: 0
» Items Equipped:  
Shield Manticore Mask - T4 Demonic Shield [Thorns / Thorns / Frost Aura / Frost Aura]
Armor Blessed Greaves - T4 Demonic Heavy Armor [Mitigation / Mitigation / Holy Blessing / Holy Blessing]
Armor Naudia's Allure - T4 Demonic Heavy Armor [Holy Blessing / Mitigation / Vampiric (Defensive) / Taunt]
Extra Dimensional Backpack - Battle Ready Inventory Slots [+1]
Extra Wedding Ring - Mitigation [+18]
Extra Hammerspace Backpack - Inventory Slot Capacity [+2]
» Combat Mastery: Mitigation | Rank 3
» Familiar: Lilith | Bush Viper | Protector
» Totem: Tanos (MIT +15)
» Battle-Ready Inventory:  
Slot 1 Gungnir's Shard [Instant Song of Healing] x17
Slot 2  
Slot 3  
Slot 4  
Slot 5  
Dimensional Backpack  
Storage Closet  
» Skills:  
  Heavy Armor | Rank 5
  Fighting Spirit | No Ranks
  Battle Healing | Rank 5
  Howl | No Ranks
  Extended Weight Limit | No Ranks
  Extended Mod Limit | No Ranks
» Extra Skills:  
  Block | Rank 5
» Mods:  
1 Focused Howl
2 Iron Skin
3 Shield Bash
4 Large Pockets
5 Rampart
  Justified Riposte
  Vengeful Riposte

Shield stepped off of the boat, giving the ferry driver a stiff nod before turning to address his fellow pillar - and more importantly, friend. "I'm assuming you've been having just as interesting of a time as I have," he sighed, giving a half smile out one corner of his mouth. "It is good to see you." This was an unusually warm sentiment for the stoic tank. In particular, the last few days had been a nightmare of scrambling, spec'ing, burning resources, and re-spec'ing himself all while trying to make sense of the new landscape of SAO - both literal and figurative. "I regret to inform you that due to pools of skill points, health, and mitigation all taking massive dives, I am no longer an unkillable tank, off-healer, and the DPS' best friend and buffer. I have had to settle for only one of those roles."

His eyes turned from his samurai companion to gaze over the collective works of their construction and renovation of Baldur's existing facility. "It's been extremely quiet... I feel like with the shake-up, everyone is too scared to venture out of their homes and safe zones to face the light of day. I've more or less only seen Freyd and Are, that shady guy from the boss meeting and battle." His gear that he bore had not undergone any changes. The dual armors - Naudia's Allure and Blessed Greaves - protected his frame while Manticore Mask's fierce face pierced the landscape behind Shield as it hung on his back. Although their enhancements had not changed, the effects surely had. Shortly, however, the former would be altered some as well.

"Enough gloom though," he said with a sigh. "I know you're far too insufferably optimistic to let little things like complete undermining of the core mechanics of Aincrad dampen your spirits. What have you been up to since we lit up the Shadow."

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Baldur laughed at Shield's dogged, "realist" philosophy. The man had once been unstoppable, and that was probably a prime example of why the system was trying to correct itself. But then, the man had long been one who broke the mold. He had almost single handedly re-pioneered the way tanks work in Aincrad, since he had Beat could team up to tag-team any content. It seemed that the system change had hurt him more than most.

"I am sure you won't be surprised, but almost nothing changed for me. I wasn't quite the swiss army knife you were though." Baldur gestured to the floor besides him, where the gaijin samurai dangled his bare feet in the refreshing coolness of the water.

"I've felt the same way though. It will take people time to get accustom to changes and head out into the unknown again... especially after what was quite the unknown. But that's what we're here for, right? To provide the safety rails, or the bowling lane inflatable bumpers, if you will." the wanna-be samurai gave the nigh unkillable tank a lopsided smile, "I am interested in taking your new build out for a spin though. Perhaps we could put together a guild group for a sub-dungeon at some point in time."

Baldur lightly flicked his foot at some of the koi fish in the pond.

"How it your morale holding up after that battle?"

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"That build probably could use some more testing," he said with a nod. "Freyd and I tangled with a sub-dungeon on this very floor. It became pretty apparent pretty quickly that going in hybrid put me behind the damage curve, which I think you know as well as any how unacceptable that is for me." He took a seat beside his old comrade, crossing his legs rather than dangling his boots into the water. "Not to talk too much shop, but needless to say, I turned around and gobbled up every defensive option I had at my disposal skill-wise, and I plan to do the same with my gear. If I get hit and my enemy doesn't feel it more than me, I'm not where I want to be."

He glanced out across the water, resting his palm on his knee and leaning to one side. "It's been difficult. Moving forward is tough now. I can't solo like I once did, at least not yet. And the work I put in shows much less of a result than before. It's discouraging, to say the least. If I'm not continually building myself to be a better tank, then what am I doing?" It was a rhetorical question, and one that he knew had many very real answers, but it was one that he felt needed to be voiced to make a point. "The guild has taken a hit. As inactive as Beat once was, he's worse now. I haven't heard a word from Mari or Oikawa, and our other members are silent as the grave these days." Maybe that analogy was too on the nose. It wasn't an unfair one though, so Shield let it hang in the air for a while.

In his sleeve, he felt a familiar twisting of scaly coils, and he extended his forearm, allowing Lilith to poke her colorful head from the depths of his tunic to flick her tongue at the wet, marshy air. Her fangs were blunted now, no longer laced with the healing fluids that had once been Shield's lifeblood in the worst of circumstances. However, she instead had learned to wind around him and harden her scales to provide occasional defensive buffs. She was almost like a living buckler. It was just one of the many indicators that life had changed in Aincrad, for some, in dramatic and dangerous ways.

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"How long have I been asleep for?"

Tired eyes opened, his vision being greeted by bright light before his virtual eyes refocused. Warm green colors filled his sight before finally taking the form of tables, tatami panels, and the like. He was in the room set aside for himself and Teayre in Baldur's estate. Calrex gave a small sigh before raising a hand, rubbing his eyes while slowly getting to his feet, "It really has been a while since the battle hasn't it?"

After the floor boss was defeated, a lot changed all at once for everyone. It seemed everyone had been hit with the "3.0" update that had occurred. Many people were still trying to wrap their heads around the sudden changes. For himself, and what he could guess for the other members of Jacob's Ladder, no time could be wasted. Calrex immediately took to his room to start devising how he was to proceed next. As much as he wished to maintain the mutli-functional array of equipment from the past, it seemed that there was no way he would be capable of doing so, especially at this point.

Many nights were spent allocating his skill points, until he finally settled on what he felt would work best, "It's still nowhere near the same as it was before, but at the least I can still fulfill my purpose in the floor battles to some level. No longer a dedicated tank, but at the least I can still keep the heat off of others."

The sliding door to his room opened as the bluenette emerged, clothed in his casual combat attire. Putting his hands into his jacket pockets the Ultramarine Knight moved through the halls, hearing nothing but silence, "Guess everyone's out or still asleep..."

Making his way down to the docks, his eyes looked out to see that Bladur and Shield were both down there welcoming a new arrival, "...might as well see what's up."

Calrex Stats:




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Baldur nodded at Shield's words and feelings. He had expected them, and some he shared as well. Baldur's main reluctance in ever even forming a guild was the lack of consistent, active, coordinated leadership, and they had all banded together to push through and share the burden, but they needed comrades to do that. They also needed the emotional strength and motivation themselves to tackle that problem and have the energy and effort to move forward.

"I understand. Believe me. But while some are less active, there is also a lot of new blood circling around, excited to take their first steps towards the peak. They're the reason we started all this. They're the ones in need of guidance. They're where our mission rests. We need to be ready to adapt. If Beat and Mari and Oikawa aren't here to help, then we find those who are."

Then Baldur heard a shoji panel slide to the side and he turned to look, seeing a mop of blue hair.

"Well well, if it isn't sleeping beauty." the gaijin samurai's eyes twinkled with mirth as he poked fun at his kohai.

"Come on out and join us Cal. We were just discussing our feelings. Shield here was saying he's felt less tanky, and had to give up his swiss army knife approach. I imagine you're much the same, since you also tried to be able to do almost everything, though in a different way." Baldur moved his haori out of the way so that the bluenette had somewhere to sit.

"How do you feel after the boss fight?" he asked Cal. "This was certainly a strange one. I have yet to go to the new floor as well, but it seems many of the old quests have changed."

He turned his head back to Shield, "I noticed Freyd at the boss fight. What are you thoughts about him?"

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Shield nodded to acknowledge the inevitability of Baldur's thoughts. You can't govern with those who are not present to do the governing. He and Baldur were present, and whoever found their way back would be welcomed. As far as new players, that was more or less news to Shield. "If you know of new recruits, then that's knowledge I haven't heard. How is it who's been 'circling,' as you so put it?"

Upon Calrex's door opening, that marked the first that Shield had seen of him since the Shadow fell. He gave a nod and a half smile. "Good to see you, Cal." Shield had a feeling that there had been a shifting in the balance between them, though it was impossible to say where that would now fall. The two of them had always been top competitors for the toughest tanks ever since Shield had arrived on the front lines. "What's the damage?" he inquired, not unaware of the many meanings such a question could hold.

There was an immediate question regarding Freyd, and Shield took a moment to ponder. "He's solid at what he does, though it's pretty clear he's done a lot of soloing. Doesn't always do the best job of considering others' abilities on the battlefield or how they may impact strategy, but he'll come around eventually I'm sure. Either way, he's not afraid of a dad joke, so I'm sure both of you would appreciate him." He gave an amused exhale of breath through his nostrils, still a little too pensive to give anything near a proper laugh.

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The bluenette gave a defeated smirk at Baldur's and Shield's words, giving a small shrug, "Good to see you both are still well, heh. Probably the same as you Shield. I ended up having to drop my more tanky abilities and have switched fully to just off-tank and DPS now. Interestingly, it does look like Achilles has undergone a change yet again, but it comes with an new Sword Art that might help offset that massive weakness it had to status effects. I haven't had a chance to look at the old quests, but from what I remember I think there might be one I might need to go and get post-haste to help round things out further."

"As for the post-battle itself, I'm fairly sure all the frontliners are gonna be spending some time trying to make heads or tails of this '3.0' update, and how it's going to affect them. I wouldn't be surprised if players from all tiers have decided to shift directions in terms of their builds. It probably would be a far-fetched assumption that come the next floor raid we'll need to re-establish everyone's roles again."

Looking around for a brief moment Calrex turned back to address the two, "Speaking of other players though...have you seen any of the other guild members since the battle? I've had my head to the skills menu this whole time so I haven't peeked to see where everyone else was at."

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