Warriors and Champions

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A New Game Part One

My name is Ray I am a typical tenth grade student. I have a few friends but mostly I am like a ghost in the wind. I love books, movies, and gaming and yes I am a huge geek which tends to lead me into situations that cause teasing and some bullying. But I tend to ignore most of it. To those people that know me I am funny, kind, and love to quote movies and share my knowledge of movies and the gaming world. I have also been in a few national championships for gaming, mostly for twitch shooters. Then one day my life was changed forever.

“Hey Ray have you heard the news?” One of my friends asked running up to me.

“What news Bobby?” I knew that this news had to deal with something to do with gaming. He and I shared the same passion for gaming.

“It was just announced that a new online single player RPG is going to be beta released in a few months.”

“Okay Bobby what is the catch there is no way they could have kept this under wraps this long without the public not knowing anything about it.”

“No way this is legit, the details will be told in a media conference today,” Bobby said very excitedly. I did not know what to think about it but knowing Bobby there had to be some truth to what he said.

I had a hard time trying to pay attention during school. Bobby had never steered me wrong when it came to gaming and I wondered what this game contained that made him so excited. I just wanted school to end so I could hear the news. My thoughts were interrupted when I felt something hit my head. It seemed that Neal was in class today and like most times I let his bullying roll off of me even though it did hurt me to be bullied. Another rolled up paper hit the back of me and I ignored it again even though I heard muffled laughing at me. After class was over Neal hit my books out of my hands and kept on walking. Ashley, a girl that shared some of the same interests as me, helped me pick up my books.

“Ray, why don’t you put a stop to this?”

“I don’t care for confrontation Ashley besides it stems from mostly him being jealous that his gaming has never been recognized.”

“But you are good with gaming Ray and Neal is good as well.”

“I know he is very good but since there isn’t a lot of championships for his type of games and there are a lot for mine he thinks that somehow I outshine him. Even though I don’t care for the attention and wish I could just game without the spotlight. But he has gotten it into his head that somehow I am a better gamer than him he needs to prove that he is better than me at something.”

“It still doesn’t mean he can bully you Ray, you need to stand up for yourself. At the very least you need to tell a teacher.” Ashley walked away from me headed to her next class and I was left standing to think about what she said.

I knew that unless I did something Neal would not stop but I also knew I could ignore it for the rest of my high school career as well. I started my way to my next class but could not focus because of what Ashley said, I knew the truth of her words but my good nature would not let me start something with Neal. And I also wanted to hear more about the new RPG. During lunch Bobby came up to me with his serious face on and I knew that Ashley had talked with him.

“Don’t you start on me too Bobby. Honestly he can only bully me for under two more years I can handle it that long.” I said trying to make it seem that Neal’s bullying didn’t matter.

“Maybe you can Ray and maybe you can’t. We all know you don’t like to start things up but you are already in a confrontation whether you like it or not. I am going to say one more thing and I will drop it. Ray you are aware how much bullying is wrong but it is also wrong to let bullying continue.” The rest of lunch was sat in quiet pondering until I broke the silence with my excitement of the news conference later this evening. We started speculating on what it was going to be and the different features we wanted in it then the bell rang for our next classes.

The rest of the school day was uneventful and when the final bell rang I raced home to do my homework so I could watch the conference without distractions. I finished my homework fifteen minutes before it was time and I quickly made something to eat and turned on the TV to watch.

Mark Rogers the CEO for SK Studios was making the conference. SK Studios made a lot of RPG games since the early nineties. However, their past few games, especially their last one, didn’t live up to the hype that it promised and left a very sour taste in a lot of fan’s mouths, including my own. I knew why they kept everything a secret since an announcement earlier of them making a new game would have made some fans upset. I hoped that they would make something good and enjoyable again.

“I want to first thank all of you fans that have stayed with us and given us feedback throughout all these years. I also want to apologize to you all since the past few games that we have published have not been up to par with our past games and was not what you guys expected from us. However, I am pleased to announce that starting today we are going back to our roots with our newest online RPG: Warriors and Champions. To make sure that this game will go above and beyond what we have never done before and to make sure that you fans will have the best gaming experience we decided that this will be a single player campaign only for awhile.

“Not only will it be a single player format but the environment will all be changeable. We have spent the past few years working on a way to make sure that if you put a mark on a tree or mess with the environment it will stay that way. Now as far as the plot it will be based in a medieval era with different factions all fighting for different reasons but for now we will only talk about two of them. First are the people of King Gwatkin which are fighting directly with the second faction The Order of the Red Dragon lead by Astoroth the Red Dragon. The other factions are smaller in size but range from good to neutral to evil. Each faction has their own back story and set of beliefs and all players can become a champion for each one and further progress the goals of the factions. In time we will introduce a PVP expansion pack where any and all champions can fight against or with other champions from their own games. In time the world will change to reflect the changes that have occurred in the PVP.

“And to top it all off we will also introduce a championship each year that will determine the outcome of the world. That’s right you the fans will help us write the history of this world and help us create the best online RPG that has ever been created. And without further ado here are two teaser trailers.” If I wasn’t excited for this game the trailers definitely sealed the deal. Before I could reach my phone to talk to Bobby my phone was already ringing. We talked late into the night with even more speculations and wondering what the other factions would be and what races and classes there would be. We also wondered when the beta would be released so we could play it that much sooner.

The next day as I was getting ready for school I turned on the news in hopes of hearing some more news about Warriors and Champions. “And with the announcement of SK Studio’s newest game: Warriors and Champions a spokesperson said that the beta will be released by invitation only sometime in May.” I sullenly turned off the TV and went to school. How could they only select a few people to be beta testers? I understood why they chose to keep it closed beta so they could make sure the test was successful since they would choose people that could think from a logical standpoint and not one as a fan. I just knew that I would not receive an invite since my luck was never that good. With a heavy heart I set out to school.

I hoped that this was the only bad news I had to bear for the day but my hope was in vain. “Well, well, look who it is. I was wondering if you were going to be in your room crying all day because you won’t be able to play your precious little game.” Neal was right there in my face rubbing it in and he was enjoying every minute of it. I tried to walk past him but his hand reached the back of my shirt and pulled me back to him. “I wasn’t done with you yet.” He said harshly.

“Leave him alone Neal!” I saw Bobby running to me and pushed Neal’s hand away from me. “What is your problem with Ray? Why must you always bully him? Huh? He is a better gamer than you and you need to accept that.”

I tried to stop Bobby but he had enough. “Just because Ray has been to a few tournaments doesn’t give you or anyone else the right to bully and pick on him. Now I suggest you step off and walk on.” Bobby’s eyes were burning with such intensity that I thought they would burn a hole right through Neal’s head.

Neal was very upset and wanted to do more but with the look Bobby was giving him Neal walked away. The crowd that had gathered around us started to disperse. Bobby and I started to walk to our class, “You didn’t have to do that Bobby.” I said seriously.

Bobby was silent for a few seconds then when he spoke he was the most serious I had ever heard him. “Yes I did Ray. You were just going to take it and continue to encourage him. Are you just going to let every bully you ever encounter walk all over you and push you around? It is time you stop this now. According to you Neal only has next year to pick on you and you will be done with him but there will be another to take his place after high school. If you don’t stop this now it will only get worse. And just think if Neal thinks that he can get away with it now and when he leaves he will find someone else to bully. You see Ray, maybe you can deal with it and maybe you can’t. He will always bully someone else if people don’t stop him now. It is time for you to put aside your gentle nature for a moment and make a stand.”

Bobby was silent for a moment in deep thought and he spoke again. “Or maybe you think that if you turn aside your gentle self you think that you might lose yourself and never be able to return to your gentle and kind side again. But no matter what you decide to do I will always be by your side.”

He walked to his class leaving me to think on what he said as I went to my class. All throughout the day I couldn’t stop thinking of what Bobby said. Maybe I was scared of what might happen to me if I did stand up for myself. I also thought a lot about what he said about Neal bullying others after he graduated. All of these thoughts made me forget about Warriors and Champions.

The remaining three months of school passed by mostly uneventfully when I asked Bobby what he was going to do over summer vacation. “My family and I are going to rent an RV and go tour some of the states and just visit the sites and what not. What about you?”

“I don’t know however there is a tourney that I wanted to look into.”

“That would be fun for you Ray and it would help you increase your skills so you can beat me more than once”, Bobby said laughingly.

“Oh you mean you actually like losing huh? Well in that case when you get back prepare yourself for the most humiliating losing streak ever.”

We both laughed and said goodbye and I went home and turned on the TV. “Tomorrow Mark Rogers the CEO of SK Studio will have his representatives send out the invitations for their newest RPG beta.” I had almost forgotten about Warriors and Champions and although I wished I could play the beta I knew that SK was looking for people that could help them rise back up to when they were in the top for gaming developers.

I went to my room and started back my old campaign from years ago to keep myself pumped for the release of Warriors and Champions next year. I lost all track of time and soon found myself still awake at four in the morning. I saved my progress and went to bed.

“Ray, Ray are you awake?” I stirred from my sleep to hear my mom calling me to come downstairs to answer a phone call for me. As I rubbed the sleep from my eyes and headed downstairs I wondered who would be calling me. Since Bobby was leaving today and he would say goodbye in person and none of my other friends would be calling like this. I picked up the phone, “Hello this is Ray.”

“Hello Ray my name is Mark Rogers.”

© 2014 RichardBBenson

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