AN: Okay so… I've got mixed feelings about this story. On one hand I do like how I did a lot of things. The system works pretty well and is consistent through the story. My OC seems like a real person and not some overpowered paper thin character. He's not an emo and he's not a goody-two-shoes either. He feels to me like possible one of the best characters I've ever written. I also like how I've written a few other characters in the RWBY-verse, showing sides of them I don't feel are properly realized. And what I've done with the lore? God I like what I've done with that so much but you won't see it until later.
But therin lies the problem. See, I realized today, the day I've posted this, that I have a hoarding problem. Not for things but for chapters. I've always had commitment issues. School especially I've had trouble buckling down and getting on things when stuff gets tough. So with stories there was an obvious solution. Make a crap-ton of chapters so if I procrastinate I have chapters squirrelled away. BUT THAT'S BAD!
With the chapters stored I can't adapt to new ideas. I can't just go 'Hm, that's a good idea. I can use this comment'. I already wrote everything so any advice I get that I want to use is null and void. And it's totally on me.
I realized this when I re-read one of my favorite stories. Yet another dance at death's borders by roguehunter11. It's an incredible piece of work that I myself love. It's also a gamer fic and it's the best I've ever seen system-wise. Rogue has the bad habit of terrible update schedules in exchange for quality content.
I looked at his story and I had maybe twenty new ideas for how to do things but I can't. Want to know why? Because I already wrote everything. It's locked down. No modifications allowed.
This is why I'm publishing this. I'm standing at a crossroads here. One is I scrap the bad stuff and really put laser focus on making a great story and actually be able to use comments. The other is I continue with this even though I feel that I can do better. I've come this far (at chapter 30 at the moment) so why not keep on keeping on?
I can't decide these things. So I want your opinion. Is this alright? I know the grammar is shoddy here and there so be quiet on that but is it okay as is? Do I rewrite it? I'm leaving it up to you all. I want to know.
With that said I'm uploading all thirty chapters. Over 100k words there of decent content. I just want to know… So leave a comment, even just twenty words, letting me know your feelings on this.
Edit: As of now the story has dropped. For more information you can see the last chapter, an ending note, though there are a few vague spoilers.
[|||| =NEW GAME= ||||]
[|||| =LEVEL 1= ||||]
I'm pretty sure I died in a car accident and I'm pretty sure it was my fault. I was walking back from a haircut during summer break of my junior year of highschool when I took a shortcut through an alley. I was letting my mind wander, thinking of what a pancake is defined as considering there are so many variants of pancakes in the world. Would flatbread be a very crappy pancake, for example, when I felt a pain in my back and I fell to the brick alley road. I felt my head grow smaller but before I knew it everything went dark. I didn't have earbuds on or was looking at my phone. I was just lost in thought on a route I'd walked a hundred times before when I died.
And that leads me to this moment. I was laying in the arms of some blurry giant people as I cried instinctively. Mentally, though, everything was just stopped. All the little neurons that would normally fire just stopped what they were doing and looked on in confusion. The giant people spoke something but it was spoken in goobly garb. That is to say it was spoken in nonsense.
It took a minute for my brain to start up again. Okay. Giant people. So they're big or I'm little… This can't be what I think it is. Is it? Maybe, just maybe I was reborn in a place with potential. Somewhere I can make a difference. Then again this is assuming I'm in a new world rather than earth. If it's back to earth I'll be so disappointed with reincarnation.
Wait a second. 'Stats'
Title: The Gamer
Level – 1
HP – 2.2/2.2 (+.55/min)
MP - 1000/1000 (+50/min)
AP – [LOCKED]
STR - 1 + (+0%)(10%)= .1
VIT - 2 + (+10%)(10%)= .22
DEX - 1 + (+25%)(10%)= .125
INT - 25 = 25
WIS - 39 = 39
LUK - 15 = 15
POINTS - 0
LIEN – 0
*Ding!* For discovering the gamer ability based on a theory as well as said theory proving correct you gain 1 WIS and 1 LUK
Of course it's a trope. Not that I mind since I quite like having a leg up on the competition but I'm still a complete cliche. On that matter I'm also rather certain I'm in shock… So, what's with the bonuses? Um… 'Skills'?
Gamer's body (Max Lv.) - HP system is introduced. Fatigue is still a factor yet food and water are inconsequential.
No gamer's mind? Well… Alright then. It could be worse. Far, far worse. But that still leaves the bonuses. Let's try… 'Bonuses'... No? 'Buffs' so not that either. There's definately something going on with my stats so… 'Perks'
Faunus (Jaguar) - You're a jaguar faunus. You get night vision, enhanced dexterity (15%), slightly enhanced vitality (10%), enhanced senses and, due to your subspecies, you learn sneak based skills 100% faster. May cause discrimination among humans.
Baby - stage 2- You're newly born. Diminishes effects of physical stats by 90% applied after all other effects of traits. Advances into the next stage (reducing effect by 10% every time) every year of after year one. Fully physically capable at 11 years of age.
So I'm a faunus, huh? Well alright then. I- WAIT I'M IN RWBY?! Oh hell yes! I was wondering about the aura section of the stats. I was pretty sure but aura could refer to a lot of things. Faunus and aura together seal the deal. Who or whatever brought me here, be it a god, chance, or whatever thank you.
RWBY is one of my favorite show of all time if not THE favorite show of mine. Some people dislike it but damn if the environment of RWBY wasn't richer than a goldmine. The world of RWBY felt alive to me back on earth. It was only a minor obsession of mine. I deny all accusations of being a fanboy.
At any rate I need to work out this faunus problem. White fang? They're bad guys. Well at least they probably are. If I'm early to canon (or worse… Canon's already gone by without me) then the white fang are still peaceful. When Sienna Khan comes in it get ugly. Or was it when Ghira Belladonna was in power? Ugh. So many tiny details. Wait! 'Notepad'... Nope. Nothing. Anyways, how will I deal with racism? With small scale violence. Enough to be respected but too little to inspire fear. That means incapacitation or disablement of any racists that happen to cross my path. Beyond the racism being a faunus is a pretty sweet deal. I wonder if I have a tail or fluffy ears? I'd personally prefer ears but a tail would look better on me. I suppose I'll find out later when I can see anything. Please tiny infant body. Develop quickly.
"Blahnahnahdahabada" Says the doctor. I can't understand him because of my undeveloped ears. Wait, were they talking this whole time?
Oh wait I should be feeling panic about now. The shock is wearin - OH DEAR LORD I DIED WHAT THE -
[|||| == ||||]
Timeskip - 1 year 6 months old
I took my first toddling steps around my 18th month in Remnant despite the 90% debuff. I don't know if I was supposed to do that. My parents, whose names are Kamina and Hans, seemed pretty surprised but after a month they seemed to have gone back to normal. They still kept a close eye on me, though. I've refrained from speaking so far. Kids don't speak until they're about two years old and while I could clearly hear at about one year old I kept from doing so. I spent most of my time trying to do something and gaining points for it too.
My physical stats were around eight on each but only applied as . Well, that's what I think. I had only gained two points in wisdom and three in intelligence. Wisdom because of my self restraint in throwing needless temper tantrums. It was really hard sometimes. My Intellect grew because I was trying hard to keep from forgetting any of my education from earth. I reviewed in my head each day. I think I kept most of the important stuff. Even mathematics, which i really dislike, were saved to the best of my abilities.
My growth was slow. Agonizingly so. I had no new knowledge to know or choices to make. I also had to refrain from exhausting my body too hard. I didn't want to harm my developing body since I don't know if the gamer's body skill applies to healing overnight. I don't particularly care to see if a permanent disfigurement or permanent injury is healable. Not to mention my lack of ability to heal anything. I was often dead tired, though.
I finally got to see myself in a mirror after breaking out of the crib and walking around for practice. I had thick black hair that was pitch black. Pale skin as well. My eyes were a dark yellow with slits. My jaguar ears were black as well. You couldn't see them well because of my hair. I was pretty lanky and thin as well. It wasn't the malnutrition from mom forgetting to feed me since I didn't need food or water. It was a natural thinness. Wow I was a delicate little pretty boy. No wonder I have my DEX increasing faster than everything else. I doubt I'll ever look muscular by any stretch of the word.
Now as to my parents Kamina and Hans… They were not good parents. Things like being fed and clothed were done but not always done well. My clothes would become too small quickly and would be too small for some time before I'd get new ones. I didn't have many toys at all. Sometimes I wouldn't get a response from crying out. It was unpleasant to say the least. I tried my best to keep my temper but when you're in diapers and breastfeeding it's hard to stay dignified.
We live in a small apartment in Vacuo. It's three rooms. A living room/kitchen, a bathroom, and a bedroom. My parents and I slept in the bedroom. Dad pays for it with a job at the pumps - water pumps that is - and mom did odd jobs and took care of me and the house.
I never met any other kids growing up since I mostly stayed indoors, which is definitely a bad parenting move yet again, but that was fine. I had and still have bigger things to worry about. See, I thought it over and I decided being a huntsman is my job choice. I have power. To not use it would practically be a crime. So I was busy developing skills.
To be specific, I was developing essential skills. Dash (Lv. 7), sneak (Lv. 23) meditate (Lv. 24), controlled breathing (Lv. 72), observe (Lv. 28), temperature resistance (Lv. 24),and pain resistance (Lv. 6) being those skills. I'd leveled them up as far as I could until the experience stagnates. I'd learned Dash, meditate, and controlled breathing through experimenting with what I can do with my body. The other two came from exposure to the cold in the early days when I couldn't tuck myself in during cold nights and I didn't have enough blankets.
Meditate passed time, calmed my emotions, and regenerated mana at increasing rates with the levels. I was especially fond of the passing time part. Controlled breathing helped me regenerate stamina quickly and lose less oxygen when exerting myself. Dash was a sort of dodge skill.
Skills were surprisingly hard to learn for the most part. They barely matter at first but with time and practice they become invaluable. I'm hoping that they level up faster with combat experience.
I tried to develop combat skills like punch but I think you need to be in combat to develop combat skills. Magic, though, was something I haven't dared to try. The same goes towards aura. Unlocking your aura at my age? On your own? Ludicrous! And magic is a completely foreign concept. It's best to not mess with it until I'm somewhat durable in case I make some mistakes. Now, though, I had some HP to use. One hundred forty three to be exact. I'd gotten to thirteen vitality in total during my cautious workouts. I think if I overload my body on mana I'll survive now. Just a guess on my part, though. I'm willing to try, though. Also, mom and dad are out now.
I began with meditation. I felt that tingling in my mind that occured when I hit level twenty. It's a feeling I know is there but it's subtle. You don't really notice it at first. I pushed on that feeling hard but the tingling ran away. I stopped looking so hard for it and it came back. This time I slowly looked towards the power. It went away the closer to it I got. I turned away once more. Third time's the charm. I looked slowly at the power. It inched away but I stopped looking towards it and it moved back to the back of my mind. I repeated the process of moving towards it and waiting plenty more times. It was irritating but only took some patience. Then I touched the mana… or is it aura? I don't actually know.
*Ding!* New skill acquired! - Mana control
"It's like a core in you… that you can feel. Isn't it incredible to be able to just feel that?"
-Apprentice sorceress Falla Jarvy
It was mana! So now I can use spells… but where's my aura? Ugh. I'll find it eventually. Right now, though… Let's run my mana through my muscles. Slowly and carefully… Aaaand nothing happens. Infusing my muscles with mana? OW! Okay! That's a no then! Looking down on my arm I see it burned with a bluish tint on the burn. I'll have to hide that.
Next attempt at making spells… Um, actually I was going to try some mental spells but that now seems like a bad idea looking at my burned arm. So… Mana arrow! I compress the mana into a bolt looking shape more akin to a small javelin than an arrow. Eh, good enough. Style is overrated.
*Ding!* New skill acquired! - Mana arrows
"A good arrow barrage is like raining death from the sky."
-Officer of the 31st archery division of Vale
Now for spin… Um… spin, mana!...
That worked? Well okay then. Next is bullets and spinning bullets. Just like in the manga… and the multitude of fanfictions. Easy. Just compress the mana.
Wow that was so easy. It's a shame I'm probably going to forget about these once I get some elemental spells up and running. Mana feels kind of like flowing water. It's fine just doing whatever you push it to do. If you push it in a direction it goes in that direction no questions asked. It just doesn't seem to like being compressed all that much though. Perhaps I can use that in the future to make explosive bullets. Hm.
The biggest downside there is that there might be a cap to how much mana I could have. If mana doesn't like being compressed then how does all my mana like being in my tiny body? I've already thought of a few solutions to that though.
Next up is mana pulse. See, I have a lot of time to think and I wondered if a pulse of mana could be used like a sonar. Let's try! Just push it out like a ring…
*whoosh!* the mana pulse pulses out of me and I see some of the furniture shake a little bit. It looked like a scene from the exorcist. The problem is that I didn't feel the mana come back. That should've been obvious, shouldn't it have? Perhaps a mist that I can sense things in. Hm. Judging from what I've seen so far mana is easy to manipulate externally and difficult if not harmful to manipulate internally.
*Ding!* Intelligence increased by one
Yes, yes. Shut up. Now, mana is good for external use and aura is good for internal use. However, Lie Ren uses aura expelled from his palms to attack a few times so aura can probably be used to attack if you have the training for it. It's likely also used for augmenting weapons. Crescent rose likely wouldn't function otherwise as would most mecha shift weapons as far as I know.
Now… for more spells. More specifically, sustainable buffs. The grind makes me drool at the possibilities. Perhaps I can make weapons with mana? I'll be looking into this whenever I can.
[|||| == ||||]
Timeskip - 2 years and 11 months old
"Mama?" I asked.
"Why don't we live somewhere nicer than this?" Mom looked at me sadly.
"Vacuo is not a kind place sweetie. This is all we can afford."
This had been going on for several months now. The conditions around the house were getting poorer and poorer. My family was having trouble with the local gangs. My father was strong. Strong enough to make an effort to recruit him from his job at the water pumps. My mother was unemployed so she mostly took care of me and did small jobs. It wasn't enough to live decently, unfortunately.
My parents were still bad parents. Mom would forget about me sometimes when she went to a friend's house or went on errands. Dad was around less in comparison to the early days. Most of his time was spent working or keeping the local gangs off of him and his friends and family.
Since my family lived in Vacuan slums we were, of course, poor. Really poor. The electricity would shut off some nights even if we paid our bills and the water was drawn from overtaxed wells and pumps. The people were all involved in the underworld in one way or another here. I'd seen plenty of orphans living on the streets. Perhaps that's why I was never given an opportunity to make friends.
I read in secret too. I got my hands on any books I could find. I had learned a few skills from this. Cooking, swordsmanship, and sewing. I had very sparse reading material, unfortunately. Any free time was spent further training my body and magic. I'm proud to say that my wisdom rose three more points too. It's at 45 now. Intelligence rose six points to 34.
I'm least happy with my mana skills. I could make a sustainable shield which I kept on several times over called mage armor (Lv. 38). Other than that I could make solid objects from mana with a skill called physical mana projection (Lv. 14). I tried to make a toy of some sort to suck on (my gums hurt! What was I supposed to do?! Ask my parents?) it took all my skills in mana bullets and arrows and fused them all into one skill. Making solid constructs of mana became its own skill, in other words. I far prefer it to the clutter of arrows and bullets taking my entire skills page. It was more versatile too. It just took a rather extreme amount of time to level up. It was worth it though.
I still hadn't made any progress towards my aura unlocking. I'm hedging my bets on feeling my aura at level 50 of meditation and I was at level 45 in meditation now. But that can all take a backseat to what's happening now. You see, on this particular day in Vacuo the gang was at my family's front door aiming to make an "example" of my father. To show what happens when you refuse the local gang.
"Open up! We know you're in there!" A rough voice called. He pounded at the door as he yelled.
"Kamina!" Dad hissed "Take Abyss and hide."
Mom's eyes widened. "What?! You know they'll kill you! Why would you stay and fight?! Why can't I stay with you to help?!" I chose to stay silent through this. It wasn't my decision to keep dad or mom from fighting.
"I'm the one they want. They don't even know you're here. Hide. Someone needs to take care of Abyss." Mom's eyes softened at this. She looked at me with a torn expression. I might as well try to help a little bit now. I silently slid my hand away from hers and walked to the sink. I opened the cupboard under it and slid inside.
"I can hide here." I said simply. I closed the door and moved myself to look through the cracks in the cupboard.
Mom looked conflicted again but she seemed to think it over before walking to the counter and drawing a knife. She walked to the door and laid flat against the wall beside it. Dad looked at her wit an unplaceable expression before walking to the door.
As he opened the door he looked grimly at the gangsters. One human with a holstered pistol and a faunus with a shotgun. "This is your last chance." said the human seriously. "You've disrespected the tvettos long enough. We offer you a place in our family and you spit on it. That Bleu tolerated your response for so long is a miracle in and of itself. Your answer?"
Dad looked grim. He stared for a moment before sighing seemingly in defeat. "Come inside." Dad walked back towards the couch of our little apartment. The human walked inside calmly. The faunus followed hesitantly.
Mom yelled as she sliced her knife towards the faunus' throat. He whirled around but got his throat sliced. Before he died his shotgun went off into my mother's knee in an explosion of red. The human drew his pistol and calmly shot my father in the chest several times. He turned around to my mother and looked sadly at his dead faunus friend. Then he put a bullet towards my mother's skull while she sobbed in pain.
Dad's breathing was ragged. I think one of the pellets his his heart. I felt anger at the gang members. They killed my mother and father… I used my sneak skill to crawl out of the cupboard silently and I readied a small storm of mana bullets. I shot them at the human, who was just looking towards me. His widened as he was peppered with red.
You have killed a level 19 human! 2480 xp rewarded. You leveled up 5x. 25 points awarded.
I looked apathetically towards the gang member. 'He got what he dished out.' I thought callously. I might feel bad later but this man just took two parents and orphaned a child. Perhaps he deserved to die. I looked towards my father. He had fallen to the ground and passed out from blood loss. I stood there for a moment before I smothered my emotions and got to work. It wasn't hard. I think I might be in shock again. It seems to be a common theme in my life. Well I'll deal with that later. I'm a two year old orphan in one of the most dangerous and lawless cities in remnant in one of the most dangerous and lawless places in said city. Exponential danger… Living here is almost impossible for me. All I have is my magic, which isn't very strong.
I need… strength. So I'll try something I've avoided doing for a long time. I held out my hand and brought mana to it. I condensed said mana, sticking it together into a web of sorts. I'm pretty sure that's how Jee-Han did it. Maybe? Hell, I'm just winging it and hoping for the best. Then I said the words and released the net. "ID create."
A tiny whooshing sound went out and… nothing happened. I sighed sadly. I was hoping to just will it into existence but it seems that I need a skillbook. Unfortunately I have no idea where I can get such a thing. Probably from a grimm. Or… from my first kill?
I walked towards the gang member I had killed and frisked him. Wallet, keys, a spare magazine, and a notebook with a list of things to do. Only the wallet had anything of interest for me. I decided to keep the money. I might need it. Actually, I'll definitely need it. A tattoo was on his arm that said Wild Desert gang on it. I'll remember that.
While I was at it I took the lien and ammo from around the house and the other gangsters. I threw it all in a sack under the sink that was small enough for me to carry. I wasn't going to stick around long enough to meet more gangsters. They were, however, really squishy targets for mana bullets. I'd be mostly lying to myself if I said I wasn't hunting them for revenge. They deserved it, of course, but throwing myself into danger to kill criminals was just a terrible idea altogether. I can't do anything to them right now.
That does leave what I need to do to survive. As far as I can think of right now I have three. Leave Vacuo and hunt grimm to get stronger. Not a smart move. The grimm next to beacon in the show were far stronger than anything I could imagine facing myself right now. If I were to face a lone beowolf it would be viable. I could spend my points but that would be essentially crippling myself for the future. There's so much I can get through training that it would be a crime to spend my points until I'm at about fifty points in a stat. I've been working on my intelligence and wisdom for a while but I have a suspicion that they would go faster if I could do more than sit and think of philosophy and my former knowledge.
The other option is to join the local gangs. I was two years old, though. Also, I'm in outer Vacuo. There's three districts of Vacue. Inner, mid, and outer Vacuo. Inner Vacuo was developed, safe, and had only the expected number of gangs. Mid Vacuo was more like the super poor parts of a city. People were poor. However, they did have laws and the like. Outer Vacuo? It was where they threw criminals if they couldn't jail them. It was where the poorest of the poor stayed. I'm practically a Schnee in outer Vacuo just because I have a house. It's like a lawless wasteland.
Joining up would be just a bad idea if I could even do it in the first place. Even if I could rise to the top eventually I can't say that I wouldn't be killed in my sleep or anything. It's far more risky than I'd like.
Finally was the option I would place as my second favorite. Sneaking into mid or inner Vacuo and getting into an orphanage. I would be safe and would be able to join shade's preliminary hunter academy or, if I was lucky, jump ship into a different city and join up at a different school. Like signal. If my rule of tropes continues then I'll be in the same year as Yang Xiao Long or Ruby Rose. I don't really care whether I meet them or not though. I'm living my life for me. Not remnant or some misplaced idea of an adventure with a manipulative wizard.
Well… I might join with Salem if I'm approached and I'm in the right position. As an underling I wouldn't even consider working for her. As an irreplaceable underling I would think of it. As an equal… what an interesting idea…
It isn't that I want to kill all of humanity but I wouldn't consider the grimm a bad thing. They scratch at humanities doors, sure, but a smaller population means less conflict between humans and a sort of unifying effect from a common enemy. Grimm aren't good but they have their benefits. Ones that remnant needs. If the grimm were gone what would the hunters do? They kill. It's their job. If there's no grimm to kill then what about humans?
Well, joining Salem's posse isn't something I need to think about. It would be better to just not be noticed by her in all honesty. Just live my life. In that regard, though, there's a decision I have to make. What do I want to do with my life? Last time I died and accomplished nothing. Being the owner of a local convenience store isn't exactly a job that changes the world.
What I want is… power. Not the power to destroy continents or command men but the power to choose my destiny. If I want to sit in a tower and play with magic all day I want to be able to do that. If I want to meet new people freely I want to be able to do that. There's a whole world out there waiting for me and I wouldn't even think of hiding myself under somebody else's care. I will make my own decisions.
There are so many out there working for their own gains. Cinder in her pursuit for power. Ozpin in his quest to kill Salem. Salem's attempts to destroy the hope of humanity. Adam Taurus' efforts to commit genocide. Jacques Schnee's attempts to do the same… I don't want to be beholden to any of them.
To do this, though, I need strength. I need to be strong enough to move freely around the world. I had to be strong enough to break the chains that would bind me to a side or to stop me from freely doing what I wanted. What I wanted… was freedom!
*Ding! Through intense emotion and a greater understanding of yourself a new skill has awakened! - Aura
"The light of the soul... No. It's not that. Aura is a road. A path. A weapon. A friend. It can be any of these things and it will always be more. Unlocking your aura sends you where you belong."
-Professor Ozpin's speech to Beacon's 67th year graduating students
Provides a 5% bonus to all physical stats
Provides a moderate regeneration factor
Provides a functional forcefield
Provides access to a new energy source
… Perfect. Oh, it's dark red like blood. Pretty.
[|||| =NEXT LEVEL= ||||]
AN: Here are the formulas for the stats. They're subject to change under certain conditions.
HP: (VIT x 10)
HP regen: (VIT x .25)
MP: (INT x 40)
MP regen: (INT x 2)
AP: (WIS x 40)
AP regen: (WIS x 2)