Don’t Sweat It!

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Both the entrance and the atrium of the NetCow Cafe became packed and cramped when three different internet cafe teams arrived at the same time. Two camps were created, the customers around the stage and the challengers at the entrance. The customers stared at all the teams that had arrived, astonished. The entire situation was a bit like waiting for a bus. One could spend ages waiting for a bus to arrive at the bus stop. But when the bus finally did arrive, there would be two more right behind it. And the customers weren’t the only ones surprised. The three teams from various internet cafes also looked at each other, surprised. None of them expected this situation. Or that they would even meet up during their challenge circuits. 

Despite the awkward situation that had presented itself, rational heads prevailed and some sort of order was established. The third internet cafe team that arrived had a discussion amongst themselves. Then their owner walked over to Qian Lu and informed him that they would return after challenging another internet cafe that was nearby. Then they left. 

As for the second team to walk through the door, they were on the fence about what to do. 

“I mean, we’re second…”
“Yeah, but who knows how long the best of three will take…? Maybe even an hour and a half?”
“It is getting late too. Maybe we should grab dinner and come back?”

While they talked this out, the first internet cafe team to arrive got up on the stage. So did the NetCow Cafe’s team. They were getting ready to start the best-of-three. When Lin Feng saw the second team about to leave, he waved to them and shouted, “Hey, don’t leave! We’ll finish real quickly! You can go for dinner after our match. There’s still time!”

The second net cafe team’s players looked at him, dumbfounded. Meanwhile, the expressions of the players from the first team immediately turned sour.

“What the hell is that supposed to mean?”
“Big words for a pipsqueak…”

The owner of the first team was also unhappy. He turned to Qian Lu and frowned. “Hey, teach those kids of yours some manners. There’s a limit to how disrespectful they can get!” 

Qian Lu feigned an apologetic expression and awkwardly laughed. “Haha, yeah yeah… Sorry about that. You know how the kids are these days.” 

After seeing this exchange, the customers couldn’t help but roll their eyes and comment in hushed tones to each other.

“What a two-faced bastard…”
“That’s just cruel… oh man, I can already see that guy’s face two games from now…”
“Poor bastards! They don’t even know what’s coming!”

The customers and the NetCow Regulars were starting to understand Lin Feng, and where he was coming from. They knew that he wasn’t just boasting or trying to play mental games with the other team. NetCow Cafe’s team was more than capable of steamrolling through these opponents. Some of the customers who didn’t get a chance to participate in the 1v1s stood up and started cheering. 

“Woooo! Go Lin Feng!”
“End it in 20!”
“We’re waiting for you to 1v1 us again!”
“Go! Go! Go!”

Soon, the best-of-three series started. The first team of challengers on the stage were already angry. They had understood exactly how little Lin Feng thought about them, and they were burning up to show him that he was wrong. More than that, they were raring to go so they could teach Lin Feng and all his friends a lesson.

The second internet cafe team that arrived decided that they would stay and watch the game. Lin Feng’s confidence made them curious. They wanted to stay and observe the game so they could determine how strong the NetCow Cafe’s team was for themselves.

The decision to stay was the smartest one that the team from the second internet cafe to arrive made. They quickly realized that the NetCow Cafe’s team wasn’t just strong. They were absurdly, insanely strong. The internet cafe team that went first had no chance at all. They were easily steamrolled, and utterly beaten two games in a row. And just to change things up, possibly even the playing field, Lin Feng and An Xin had swapped roles for the second game. It didn’t make a difference at all. The second game was just as much of a curb-stomp as the first one. 

With the first best-of-three now over, the customers in the NetCow Cafe erupted into wave after wave of clapping and cheering. Everyone’s palms had turned red and started to sting from all the clapping. But they had much to celebrate. Their team had now defended their turf three times in a row! From the start of the tournament this afternoon until now, the NetCow Cafe team had defeated every single challenger that had come through the door! 

Making the whole thing even sweeter was that the NetCow Cafe team had defeated every team that came up against them in 2-0 clean sweeps. The cherry was the defeated look worn by the first team up on the stage, and the shock and terror in the eyes of the second team waiting on the sidelines. The NetCow Regulars felt pride surge up in their hearts as they realized that their internet cafe was indeed the strongest one!

The first team shuffled off the stage after being utterly destroyed and terrorized. As they left, the second team slowly walked up onto the stage. The nervousness and caution was evident on their faces. The match they had just watched, where the NetCow Cafe team faced the first team to arrive, had wiped away all of their confidence. But they still had enough courage left to play, and some semblance of a plan. Once they got up on the stage and both teams entered Champion Select, the second team of challengers immediately banned all five of the champions that the NetCow Cafe team used in the last match. 

The customers below the stage clicked their tongues.

“They’re target banning?”
“Hah, as if that’ll work!”
“If the 1v1s from before taught us anything, it’s that those kids have insane champion pools!!”
“There’s no use trying to ban them out!” 

At this moment, Qian Lu was hardly paying attention to the match. It was because he knew the result was already decided, and that his humble little business would be losing another ¥500.  “Hah… What’s the point? If they win, they win. I’d be surprised if they lost a single game at all…” Qian Lu muttered to himself.

Qian Lu was not a prophet, but he could read enough of the future to figure out the outcome of the game. The second best-of-three concluded in less than an hour. The NetCow Cafe team notched yet another flawless victory on their belts after defeating the second team 2-0.

The NetCow Cafe was currently 4-0 in the Battle Bonanza. Out of the three internet cafe teams that had come to challenge them, two had been swiftly put down. The third team, who had left to challenge another nearby internet cafe, had yet to return. But it was starting to get late.

After waiting around for the third team of challengers for a bit longer, Lin Feng and the others started getting hungry. Qian Lu approached the group and suggested, “How about we take a break for dinner? I’ll order some take-out. It seems like that team earlier won’t be back for a while.”

Qian Lu’s proposal was met with Lin Feng’s enthusiastic approval. The rest of the team also didn’t have any objections. So, Qian Lu pulled out his cell phone and ordered some take-out, and requested that it be delivered to the NetCow Cafe. Just as Qian Lu finished the order and started putting down his phone, the third team of challengers returned. They had just won a best-of-three against a different internet cafe that was nearby.

After walking in the door, they were dumbfounded.

“What’s going on?”
“Weren’t there two teams before us?”
“Did they finish both matches in under two hours?”
“No way, right? That’s way too fast.”

Lin Feng and the others were also surprised. Before they even had a chance to eat their dinner, the opponents from earlier had returned. This was really some bad timing. 

Qian Lu walked over and explained the situation to the owner of the third net cafe team. Then, the owner nodded and said, ‘Don’t worry. That’s fine. You guys can eat your dinner first. We can wait.”

Even so, it would still take a while before the delivery driver arrived. Then, there would be the time spent eating on top of that. It wouldn’t really be proper to make the opponent wait this long.

Lin Feng raised his hand and said, “It’s okay! We can play a match real quick right now and eat later!” 

The players and the owner from the third net cafe team politely declined.

“No no no, take your time. You can eat.”
“If we start playing now, your food will get cold by the time we finish.”

Lin Feng smiled at them and said, ‘Don’t sweat it guys! Trust! There’s still 40 minutes before the delivery driver arrives. We’ll have just enough time for two games!”

Just enough time…?
Is he serious? 

The players and owner from the third team looked at each other with stunned expressions. They could not figure out how to react. The kid in front of them was being friendly and cheerful, but there was something about his words that indicated to them that they were being looked down upon!

The Greatest Game of Ranked League!

Dev Thought: So this is obviously a novel about a guy who is a God at League of Legends. And everyone he plays with is also great at League of Legends. We spend a decent bit of time talking about cool plays, absurd mechanics, pixel-perfect iframe dodges, etc. Stuff that most people who play League can’t even begin to do. But it leads to this warped perception of the game and the player base. We look at characters in Rise, streamers who used to be pro players, YouTubers who used to be pro players or coaches, and think that’s the level that this game needs to be played at. But it really isn’t.

What you see below you is the scorecard from a recent ranked game that two friends of ours, DaoistTerranrai and Khasper7 played. So this is not a for-funsies normal game to learn the game. This is ranked. Granted, its low ELO ranked. But it is ranked.



For those of you wondering how to read this, what you’re seeing is a team that died 23 times total and only killed one person on the opposing team ONCE. It is truly a beautiful thing when five different people who do not know each other or of each other and do not communicate beforehand at all come together to throw a game this badly. Our boys, who were on the Blue Team, also managed to take no towers, no dragons, and no Rift Heralds this entire game. And this is a real ranked game.

For those of you that want to try out League but you’re hesitating because the game has this enormous skill mountain that you have to climb or because you think its toxic, etc, etc, don’t even worry about it. For the most part, the vast majority of the player base for the game hovers around this skill level. The people that you see doing incredible shit on streams or YouTube or whatever, they represent the tiniest minority of all players. League ain’t that bad, and no one really cares if you stumble along at the beginning while you’re trying to learn.

And the toxic person that’s whining in team chat/all chat about how they would carry if their team was better? More often than not, that’s the guy that’s got 5 deaths and no kills. He’s just venting out some frustration that he has with himself for not being good on other people. That’s why he’s bad and why he’ll perpetually be bad. Good players don’t blame other people for losing.

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