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Chapter 41: A Newbie Turn of Events

Chapter 41: A Newbie Turn of Events

The next day saw a figure concealed entirely in tattered black robes standing on the hill overlooking the Spiderweb Software Message Board. He sighed. "Ohhhhhh. Nalyd is so alone. Everyone hates him. Everyone..."

"Hello! Who is Nalyd? And do you want to see pictures of my cat Worf? They're funny!" Sarasaphilia caught up to Nalyd.

Nalyd glared at Sarasaphilia from underneath his hood. "Can't you see that Nalyd is busy being alone and hated? Go away."

"Um, all right," Sarasaphilia said.

"What's going on?" Actaeon joined Sarasaphilia and Nalyd. He had a bow slung over his shoulder.

"Geneforge 4 just came out. Oh, and do you want to see pictures of my cat?"

"Greetings!" Emperor Tullegolar stepped out of the shadows. "I can see that you are all new to the message board, so let me explain some things. I am Emperor Tullegolar. I was recently and unfairly banned from Spiderweb due to the tyrannical tendencies of the admins and many other oldbies. So when you enter Spiderweb, don't throw your lot in with them, or you'll come to grief. Join me instead and I will usher in a new era of order and prosperity as soon as my ban ends."

"Well..." Sarasaphilia began.

"Don't listen to him. He's a Shaper. See, he has Shaper robes on. Everyone knows shaping is evil." Kyrek joined the group.

"What are you, some sort of Trakovite?" Emperor Tullegolar demanded.

Kyrek puffed out his chest proudly. "As a matter of fact, I am."

Emperor Tullegolar spit at Kyrek's feet. "Don't listen to him, he's an idiot."

"But shaping has caused so much destruction and disease. Plus, it drives people mad."

"Only because they're too weak to handle it. Shaping will result in the perfection of humanity, and I will be the one to achieve it."

"You know, I'm not really sure about that," Actaeon said, "I think I'll go to the message board and find out what it's like before I make any decisions."

"Just remember that my side is the right side. If anyone tells you otherwise, they're wrong." Emperor Tullegolar stalked off.

Kyrek, Actaeon, and Sarasaphilia started towards the message board.

"Shouldn't we ask that other guy to come with us?" Actaeon asked.

"Nah, he wants to be alone." Sarasaphilia said.

Nalyd sighed again. "Nobody likes Nalyd. Why does nobody like him?"

Upon Mars climbed the hill. "wow oh wow genforce 4! its truely extravagant"

"Gah! Learn correct spelling and grammar or Nalyd will be forced to destroy you!"

Upon Mars backed off. "you have to understand that nicity between fellow man makes us more closer to perfection than..."

The air around Nalyd suddenly grew cold and he lunged towards Upon Mars. "Nalyd warned you about correct spelling and grammar!"

Upon Mars ran off with Nalyd in pursuit. "no you have to understand understand! im dysalexic!"

"Nalyd doesn't care! Once he catches you, you will be as hated as he is until you learn correct spelling and grammar!"

"no let me be! help! hlp!"


Kyrek, Sarasaphilia, and Actaeon entered the General Forum. Only a few Spiderwebbers were present and most of them were asleep.

"Um, hello." Sarasaphilia looked around uncertainly.

Nikki sat up and yawned. "Meh. More new arrivals. Welcome, leave your sanity at the door, and all that."

"Oh, right." Actaeon deposited his sanity in the appropriate jar with some difficulty, as it was already full.

"Where is everyone else?" Kyrek asked.

"They're already in the G4 Forum. It's much livelier down there."

"Oh, okay then. Thanks," Kyrek said.


Sarasaphilia, Actaeon, and Kyrek went to the Geneforge 4: Rebellion Forum. Spiderwebbers, old and new, were everywhere, and their enthusiasm was palpable. A large fountain stood in the middle of the forum but other than that it was dry and bare. It was still fairly obvious that a fight had occurred there recently, though.

"What is that?" Sarasaphilia pointed towards the fountain.

"I think it's a model of the geneforge," Actaeon said.

"But shaping is... hey!" A drop of water fell in Kyrek's eye. He wiped it out and looked up. It was hard to see at first glance, but there was clearly a sprinkler system on the ceiling.

"What is that for?" Sarasaphilia asked.

Delicious Vlish floated up to them. "See how dry and barren this forum is? Soon, we will plant grass and trees here. The sprinkler system is for them. We would have had it done already if not for... certain recent events. At least we got the main component of the sprinkler system from it." Delicious Vlish pointed out Ocean Bound at the center of the sprinkler system.

"Yay! Geneforge 4 is almost out!" Nioca grabbed Sarasaphilia and danced around in a circle with him. "Haha! I'm so excited!"

Sarasaphilia looked bewildered. "Wha...?"

Dintiradan, with Wanderer and the Lurker in tow, chased after lurkers. "Hey, you. You look familiar, but I've never spoken with you before. Are you a lurker?"

The lurker turned and hurried away. Dintiradan followed him. "Ha! You are! Join my Legion of Terror! I pay well! Plus, you'll live when I take over the forums!"

Wanderer said, "I didn't know we had anything to pay them with."

"We don't, but I'm sure we'll find something once we rule these forums." Dintiradan set his sights on another lurker. "Hey, you! I want to talk to you for a minute!"

Student of Trinity and a few others were telling a group of newbies highly dubious tales about their testing experiences.

"...Jeff took it out, but in the original version the rotghroth in the Wrecked Labs would tell knock-knock jokes. They were pretty good ones too, but if you had used too many canisters you would just get enraged and you'd have to fight him," Student of Trinity said.

Slartucker looked up from some preliminary notes he was taking. "I heard the ornk is the best creation you can make in the game. Is that true?"

"Almost. If you find all three canisters of create ornk, you can create oozebeasts. Those are definitely the best creations in the game," Randomizer said.

"No, there are only two canisters of create ornk in the game. You have to breed the oozebeast, and it's really hard. Don't try it without at least five points in every shaping skill," Student of Trinity said.

"Wait, you can breed creations? Isn't that new? What can you breed?" a newbie asked.

"Oh, you can breed all the creations you can make. Except for vlish," Alorael said.

"Why not vlish?"

"Because we vlish actually manage to keep our private lives private, silly human," Delicious Vlish said, "Anyway, let me tell you, servile is the worst class to take. You get all excited because you get to use the geneforge and then you spend the rest of the game sweeping, cooking, licking boots, and hiding in terror from rogues. Unless you decide to be one of those mad cultists. The tattoos and spells you learn from them are pretty cool, but the Shapers kill you at the end of the game."

"The best ending is when you end up exiled on Sucia island with the PC from the first game," Randomizer said, "It's really hard to do but manageable."

"Actually, if you play an Infiltrator, you can get that ending really easily. Just another reason infiltrators are the best," Synergy said, "And the rotghroth that tells knock-knock jokes still exists, he's just been relocated to between the zones."

"Oh, right, I forgot about that," Student of Trinity said, "The things merchants will sell you there are great, like "I'm with deadweight" T-shirts for all your creations if you play as a lifecrafter. All the children running around there are annoying, though, and you aren't allowed to kill anything between the zones."

"Wait... is any of this true?" another newbie asked.

Schrodinger walked by with an outline for his walkthrough in hand. "No, they're just messing with you."

"But then what is the game really like?"

"You'll just have to wait and see," Delicious Vlish said.

"But it will be worth it. I liked it, and I don't normally like Geneforge," Alorael said, "Hey! Drakefyre! We need to talk about my temporary ban."

"We've been over this already. It was an accident. No more needs to be said," Drakefyre said.

"Fine. But I will whine about it at every opportunity! So nyah!"

Meanwhile, Slartucker had moved on to where Ash Lael and Thuryl were developing torment-level challenges for each other.

"...using only a stick," Thuryl said.

"No problem. Now for you, hmm..." Ash Lael said.

"No canisters, no trainers, no creations, no magic, and no using skill points. Or, you have to play as a warrior," Slartucker suggested.

"Hmm..." Thuryl thought for a minute.

"Well?" Slartucker asked.

"I'm still thinking about it," Thuryl said, "They both sound difficult."

"The warrior is really easy if you cheat and max out all the stats!" a newbie said.

Thuryl turned around and punched him in the face. The newbie stumbled off.

Slartucker sighed. "Thuryl..."

"I'm pretty sure I did him a favor, actually," Thuryl said with disdain.

Andraste stepped out of Nioca's path as he ran by. "Whoa! Calm down! Why don't you go check to see if it is out by now?"

"Great idea!" Nioca caught Andraste's arm and dragged her into the Tech Support Forum.

"Ugh, what a mess." Andraste looked at the pile of equipment and boxes in disgust. "It will take forever to find it, if it's even here."

"We'd better start looking then." Nioca started sorting through a pile.

Dikiyoba corked an energy potion and joined them. "What are you two looking for?"

Andraste tossed several thorn batons aside. "We're checking for G4."

A strange box materialized at Nioca's feet. "Hey, what's this?" Nioca opened it. "It's copies of the demo of G4! How did they get here?"

"Hey, everyone!" Andraste yelled, "Geneforge 4 is out!" She carried the box into the Geneforge 4: Rebellion Forum.

There was some pushing and shoving, but soon everyone had a demo copy. Slartucker immediately started taking notes on the optimal strategy and Schrodinger began work on his walkthrough.

Dikiyoba started to play and then stopped. "Oh no!"

"What is it?" Nioca asked.

"Dikiyoba's copy is running really slowly." Dikiyoba shook the game in an attempt to make it work.

"Oh. Well, you could try... what are you doing?" Nioca said.

Dikiyoba pulled out a haste potion and dunked the game in it. "There. That works. Well, works well enough."

Jumpin' Salmon caught sight of MagmaDragoon exiting the forum. "Hey, Andraste, let's see what he's up to."

Andraste sighed. "Fine."


Ephesos and the other BoA designers had returned to the General Forum and were talking when Nalyd entered.

"Welcome to Spiderweb Software. Leave your sanity at the door," Nemesis said.

"Nalyd has no sanity." Nayld shuffled into a corner and sat there, staring at everyone.

Arancaytar shuddered. "I can't quite put my finger on it, but for some reason he creeps me out."

MagmaDragoon, Jumpin' Salmon, and Andraste entered. MagmaDragoon headed for the door.

"Wait, where are you going?" Ephesos asked.

"I have to go for now. I have work that needs to be done before I can play Geneforge 4, and I want to play it as soon as possible. I'll come back eventually, though."

"Drats. Well, good-bye," Ephesos said.

"Bye." MagmaDragoon walked out the door.

"Poor kid. Doesn't he realize that there's nothing great about G4? KoL is where it's at. Come on Andraste, let's go play."

"Sure!" Andraste followed Jumpin' Salmon out the door.

"Is Salmon really gone? Thank goodness," Kelandon said, "If I'd known it was that easy, I'd have tried to get rid of him a long time ago."

A moment later, a newbie walked in. He turned to the sanity jar. "You're jar is full."

"Bad grammar!" Nalyd lurched out of the shadows toward the newbie as the air around him dropped several degrees.

Arancaytar shrank back into a corner. Nikki, however, stuck his foot out and tripped Nalyd. "Leave him alone. That was hardly an error worth worrying about. Wait until a real noob walks in."

Nalyd sighed and returned to his corner. "No one understands Nalyd. No one likes him."

Tyranicus ran through the forum, wearing only pants and woad. "Yes! Geneforge 4 is out! Now Jeff can focus on Nethergate: Resurrection! There's going to be new dungeons and new items and..." Tyranicus tripped over a can of spam and fell to the ground, somehow managing to break his neck in the process. Ephesos sighed and pulled out a Balm of Life potion. He hesitated. "Or should I just leave him until the Nethergate remake comes out?"


Emperor Tullegolar stood watching the message board. "And so with the release of Geneforge 4: Rebellion and the influx of newbies, the Spiderweb Software Message Boards is saved from a long, slow decline and the oldbies are secure in their positions of power once more." He kicked a nearby rock angrily. "I hate them all!"