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Log Horizon Infinite Loops

Discussion in 'The Index' started by Detective Ethan Redfield, Feb 17, 2014.

  1. This thread is for posting Infinite Time Loop snippets regarding the Log Horizon anime/manga/light novel series, much like the MLP, Mega, Sailor Moon, and Misc Loop threads that already exist on spacebattles.

    Loop mechanics (general):

    One person in a Loop, often the main character, is an Anchor. They are the person who first starts time looping.
    There is always at least one Anchor present in a given Time Loop snippet, though it may not be the local one.
    The standard pattern for a loop is that the Anchor (and whoever else is Looping there) come to awareness in a loop at a particular point in the story. From there, events will play out as influenced by the Loopers present, acting with the benefit of their foreknowledge, until either a predetermined end point is reached or all the Loopers have died.
    To be Awake is to be aware of the time loops (that is, to have gone back in time this time.)
    An Anchor is the only character guaranteed to be Awake. Even after others have started looping, it is mostly random as to whether they will be Awake this particular loop.
    Crossovers, fusions, and alternate pasts can also take place. It is perfectly possible, for example, to have the characters Awaken into a loop which conforms to a fanfic universe rather than reality.
    Loops do not have to be in chronological order, but it is strongly preferred that they not require a mutually contradictory order (where A must be before B and B must be before A.)
    Just about every Looper is very, very stir crazy.

    Tvtropes page: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Fanfic/TheInfiniteLoops

    Loop terms you may be unfamiliar with, but will be important and possibly prevalent in the tone of these Loops (especially the contributions I write):

    Threats to Yggdrasil:

    These are grouped by their ability to cause metaphysical instability in Loops or loopers. Physical might has little bearing on this scale. The physical destruction of a universe won't even cause the gods to blink so long as its metaphysical data remains intact. The rating system goes from 1-5 in descending order of severity.

    Category 1 - Capable of dealing critical damage to Yggdrasil's systems. This has happened once and the event resulted in the Loops themselves becoming necessary to keep the whole system from crashing. A great deal of Yggdrasil's remaining power, roughly 90% at least, is dedicated to ensuring there's not a second.

    Category 2 - Capable of completely destroying a branch of Yggdrasil's system (more commonly known as a Loop). A looper, particularly an Anchor, ascending to the divine level is the most well-known method to trigger a category 2 event. There have been two confirmed category 2 events. Madoka of the Puella Magica Loop was manipulated by her looping familiar Kyuubey into causing the first by ascending to the divine level, and the second induced widespread secondary damage across all active Loops at the time in an event now referred to as the Crash (this is a major event for the Mega Loops as you'll see). Much of what Yggdrasil operators do is meant to prevent potential category 2 events.

    Category 3 - Capable of inducing metaphysical instability. Whether Loop or looper, metaphysical instability is bad and, left unchecked, could worsen to a full-blown category 2 event. Yggdrasil operators have been known to intervene in category 3 events to prevent them from so worsening.

    Category 4 - Serious threat in-universe. Basically anything an experienced or veteran looper could have significant trouble dealing with. A number of category 4 events result in universal destruction and/or the premature end of a Loop iteration. Little chance of causing serious metaphysical instability, so they're rather low on Yggdrasil's long list of priorities right now. Loopers are officially on their own dealing with these things.

    Category 5 - Standard competent villain level threat, and not even a blip on Yggdrasil's radar at this point. Generally a negligible threat to an experienced looper.


    MLE - Malicious Looping Entity. Exactly what it says on the tin. An entity brought into the Infinite Time Loops by design or accident who either cares nothing for maintaining the stability of the multiverse, is actively working against it, or simply desires to use the Loops to bring harm to others (usually other loopers).


    Anchor Candidates: Not every inhabitant of a universe is viable to use as an Anchor in the first place, much less after damage to their home universe is taken into account. Anchor candidates not chosen as an Anchor are also often among the first to begin looping. Here's a rumdown of the categories of Anchor candidates that Yggdrasil considers when bringing a Loop online and how they correlate to works of fiction:

    Primary Anchor Candidates: The most likely beings to successfully Anchor a Loop and the first that Yggdrasil considers. These are the central protagonist(s) of a fictional work.

    Secondary Anchor Candidates: Somewhat less capable as an Anchor than the primaries, but still a decent choice if the primary candidates are too badly damaged to serve in this capacity. These are the major characters of a fictional work outside of the central protagonist(s).

    Tertiary Anchor Candidates: The least able to Anchor a Loop that are still in any way capable of doing so if both the primary and secondary candidates prove unviable for whatever reason. These are the significant supporting characters or frequently recurring characters of a fictional work.

    If all Anchor candidates prove insufficient to the task alone, then special measures like Linked Loops, 'jumpstart' attempts via fused Loops, or other special measures the Yggdrasil admins can code are initiated. If all of these fail, then the universe in question is typically set to Read-Only as a last resort.
    Note: It is possible for a universe, like the dreaded Eiken, to need no Anchor due to being stable enough to not need one.


    Read-Only: Basically, a universe is set to where nothing can affect its baseline whatsoever. No loopers activate and no items native to this reality can be taken out of it. It's a last-resort measure and essentially the reverse situation from a universe stable enough not to need an Anchor.


    Skaia Protocol (Homestuck): A very potentially dangerous universe generation protocol using what seems to be portions (or more) of Yggdrasil's own universe generation protocols. Possibly a manifestation or copy - partial or otherwise - of whatever subroutines allow Yggdrasil to 'grow'. The good news is that all of the universes generated by the protocol were undamaged enough that they could be stabilized without needing Anchors, even if that would have been the easier option in some cases. The bad news is that universes generated by the protocol tend to 'drift' which means that the Yggdrasil operators can't quite get it locked down completely and thus sometimes have to deal with loopers who encounter it. The gods closely monitor any contact with the Skaia protocol and will readily confiscate anything dangerous to the Loops.

    And finally, the currently written loops:

    ----------------------------------------
    LH 1.1
    ----------------------------------------

    Shirogane Rei of Japan, or Shiroe of Theldesia, tried to calm his racing mind as he systematically analyzed his surroundings. His body felt strangely weak and ill-fitting, a sensation that he only remembered having once before.

    This situation could only be called the opposite of that one. Instead of finding himself in the world of Elder Tales, he found himself back in his apartment, sitting at his computer desk. His body, healthy enough for a non-athletic human, possessed none of the easy strength of a high-level Adventurer.

    The website on the screen in front of him proclaimed, “Countdown to the release of Homesteading the Noosphere, the latest expansion of the hit MMORPG Elder Tales! Celebrating 20 years of adventure!”

    The countdown showed hours remaining. It should have been zero. No, it should have been in the negatives.

    Shiroe - he thought of himself by that name more than Rei, these days - knew of the time flow differences between Theldesia and Earth quite well. By Earth’s reckoning, a Theldesian day lasted two hours; Earth observed 12 Theldesian days pass for every one of its own. As a gamer, Shiroe had regarded it as simply part of the game mechanics of Elder Tales.

    In any case, Shiroe had spent enough time in Theldesia that he should not have returned to Earth on the same day, let alone the same week, and certainly not before he had left. Was it a hallucination, he wondered, or time travel, or was this just a dream?

    A chat window popped up. Naotsugu asked if Shiroe would be online tonight for the update. As far as Shiroe could recall, Naotsugu had asked the same the first time. Chances were that, whatever was happening, Naotsugu was not included in the effects.

    Shiroe pinched himself once, and then twice more for confirmation. “Ouch,” he said as he shook out his hand. This almost certainly was not a dream.

    Naotsugu was waiting for a reply. Shiroe pushed his glasses up. “I will be there,” he typed on the keyboard with steady hands. They did not betray how loudly his heart beat in his ears.

    ----------------

    The transportation had occurred just as the expansion occurred at midnight, as expected. One moment Shiroe had been watching the update’s progress bar as it installed itself on the MMO’s servers, the next he stood in the streets of Akiba in his Theldesian body - taller, more slender, and Half-Alv despite his rather human appearance.

    Shiroe, turning his head to take in the strangely reassuring post-apocalyptic ruins of the city, took note that all of the other Elder Tales players displayed signs of shock at the transition. They panicked, shouted, and wanted to know where they were. The reality was slow to sink in.

    Having truly time traveled sounded more and more likely as time progressed. He did not particularly want to believe he had traveled through time, invalidating all his work, decreasing or removing his ties with others. He was not a naturally social person, and the need to reforge what he had before intimidated him. Nevertheless, he refused to give up.

    Shiroe called up his status screen with a thought. The menu panel hovered in front of him, invisible to any bystanders. As long as someone had the proper amount of focus, manipulating the 'screen' did not require any movements.

    Before he proceeded to the friends list, unexpected differences made him freeze and narrow his eyes. New tabs and text, some of which was unreadable, cluttered the menu screen.

    He frantically but methodically paged through the tabs in an attempt to find the source of the alterations. The information on the character statistics tab made him flinch in surprise.

    ‘Subclass: Looper (Anchor), Lv. 1’? That was nothing like the level 90 Scribe that Shiroe should have been. He had never even heard of the Looper subclass.

    He took himself to the subclass menu. The information there was too much. Some of the abilities listed displayed glitched text formed from random symbols, but many were quite readable. His breath froze in his lungs.

    ‘Live through repeated loops’, ‘retain memories from previous loops’, ‘access gains from previous loops’; Shiroe grasped what those could mean immediately. They made other abilities, like the ‘access all subclass skill paths’, barely catch his notice.

    At the end of the list, and it was lengthy, he saw a special note. ‘Permanent character status: Anchor. Upon loop reset, immediately placed in another loop.’

    Gibberish made further explanations of the status unreadable. A quick check of the character info tab showed that whatever the status was, it did not give his stats a visible buff or debuff.

    'No matter,' he thought as he forced himself to resume breathing; he did not want to faint in the street.

    The abilities he could read were clear enough. If the world around Shiroe was as real as he thought it was, he had indeed time-traveled. Furthermore, the wording of his abilities list implied that it could happen again. He needed to find out why, if he could, and if anyone else had experienced what he had.

    However, Shiroe knew what he would do with this second chance: what he had before, but better.

    He switched over to the friends list and scrolled down. Naotsugu, Touya, Minori… Akatsuki. His friends needed him. The menu changes could wait.


    ----------------------------------------
    LH 1.2
    ----------------------------------------

    As Shiroe found himself in his computer chair once again, he could only sigh. Uncontrolled time-traveling proved to be quite tedious.

    He leaned back into his chair and swiveled it around once. Part of him wanted to give up. Maybe, for once, he would not log into Elder Tales and would spend the loop relaxing on Earth. There were all sorts of things he could afford to try out thanks to the time loops. Vacationing somewhere tropical and learning how to scuba dive sounded enticing.

    No, Shiroe finally decided, he would give Theldesia another try. He was afraid that he would have plenty of time for vacations later.

    ----------------

    Once the transition occurred, Shiroe immediately brought up the status screen like usual. Thanks to the Looper subclass options, he could activate useful and mastered abilities from past loops right away.

    He blinked. The menu had changed once again.

    Portions that had been glitched and obscured by errors and nonsense text had been cleared up. Moreover, a new tab had been added - a help menu?

    Without hesitation, Shiroe opened it. A title page and a table of contents unfolded in the air in front of him.

    ’All About Looping
    By Saraswati and Iris
    Editor: Seshat’


    Shiroe was pretty certain that all of those names belonged to goddesses of different pantheons. Giving himself a mental shake and refocusing on the task at hand, he skimmed through the chapter list.

    ’Chapter 1: Is Your Life Too Repetitive? Looping and You
    Chapter 2: Help, My Part Has Changed! Loop Variants
    Chapter 3: You Are Not Alone - World Tree for Dummies
    Chapter 4: Luggage for Loopers! Making a Subspace Pocket
    Chapter 5: Tenuous Grasp on Sanity? Useful Tips and Tricks
    Chapter 6: All the ‘Do Not’s - How to Avoid Breaking the Universe
    Conclusion: By Sun Wukong’


    Fighting a sudden headache, Shiroe rubbed his temples. He had a sinking feeling that he would need that vacation the next time around.

    ----------------

    Saraswati checked that the updated patch had installed successfully. Two of her hands typed rapidly on her keyboard while a third manipulated the wireless mouse.

    She thought to herself, 'Menu update, check. Text translation, done. Functionality, improved. Safety limits, active.' Everything had gone as planned.

    Shortly after the loop’s activation, which had started smoothly enough, an emergency in another loop had called her away and temporarily left the loop under the sole supervision of Iris, a reliable aide who specialized in transitions.

    Realizing that the loop’s coding wasn’t up to par to dealing with the Earth-Theldesian transfer, Iris had immediately coded a patch that did the job. Unfortunately, her inexperience with managing loops had prevented her from noticing quite how enthusiastically Theldesia had incorporated the coding. Even Saraswati had needed a few loops to realize that the Anchor had an unusual amount of flexibility with applying changes to his Theldesian baseline.

    Saraswati liked Iris too much to blame her for the patch’s unexpected side effects; every loop had its quirks. Instead, Saraswati had seized the opportunity provided and incorporated a help file into a thoroughly debugged version of the patch. It would ensure that she did not have to worry about the Anchor or any Loopers getting ‘the talk’ later.

    Her fourth hand brought a cup of chai tea to her lips as she watched Shiroe’s actions on another monitor. Good, he had found the file as quickly as expected.

    The unexpected chapter titles and presence of a conclusion registered in her mind.

    Saraswati spit her tea across the keyboard. “That damn monkey!” she growled as she slammed her teacup down on her desk, only its inherent unbreakability preventing it from shattering.

    'When did that immature cretin of a trickster god get his paws on my file?!'

    ----------------
    LH 1.2.2 (Detective Ethan Redfield)
    ----------------

    "Chapter 6: All the ‘Do Not’s - How to Avoid Breaking the Universe," Shiroe muttered to himself, but loud enough that Naotsugu could hear him.

    Naotsugu watched Shiroe with a discerning eye. Ever since the Apacalypse had happened, Shiroe had been...slightly different from how he expected. Sure, he was the intelligent man with glasses and nasty, beady eyes just as he imagined, but there was something about him, like he knew more about what was going on in this world than he should.

    For example, he only ate one of the menu made sandwiches, and only one bite, then switched to eating fruits and vegetables almost immediately, the only things with taste. He seemed surprised that Nyanta was the player that saved Serara, but it was only an act he could tell. The most damning one though was he didn't contact Maria to get Serara's location when they arrived in Susukino. No, all he did was stare at his status screen, his eyes rolling from side to side and then down, like words were flitting across his screen at a high speed as he walked purposely towards Nyanta's house.

    Even now, Shiroe was reading. The enchanter reached in front of him and tapped his menu screen, meaning he opened something new. The guardian was about to ask what he was reading when Shiroe blinked and tilted his head, mouth started opening. A single syllable word came out in confusion, "Eh?"

    As Shiroe continued reading whatever, his eyes grew wider and wider, mouth drooping lower and lower until he finally shot up from his seat on the log and shouted, "EH!?"

    Everyone looked to Shiroe, Akatsuki speaking first, "Everything alright, Milord?"

    Shiroe looked around, blinked a couple times and rubbed the back of his head, "Uh, yeah," and then returned to his seat.

    ----------------

    (Shiroe POV)

    Shiroe sighed and opened his status menu again continuing where he left off just before getting on his griffon. Chapter 6 was not a particularly long chapter as it described a few simple actions that would cause his loop to collapse. It advised against such an option since he would be forced into a safe mode server...or worse the Eiken loop.

    In Elder Tales, killing yourself wasn't an option to escape anyway, though the idea that some loopers tried to kill themselves once to escape these loops was mildly disturbing. Briefly, he contemplated if he would have so many loops that escape by suicide would seem a good option, then disregarded it. If the description of Eiken were true, he wouldn't want to end up there for any length of time. Furthermore, if his loop made him miserable, it was his duty to change the world and make it a better place.

    It was at the end of the chapter that he came across an attachment, which was simply titled, 'Ways Loopers Have Collapsed Their Own Loops.'

    It was an encyclopedia to itself on what other loopers have done to either end the loops, entertain themselves or make their loops easier to handle. Shiroe decided to read the table of contents and then come back to it later, as the initial help guide would be more helpful in these early loops. He figured this Encyclopedia would make good reading later on in the loops. His eyes scanned the table of contents...and then widened, "Eh?"

    Chapter 1: Experiments
    a. Experiments with the Sun
    b. Experiments with High Explosives
    c. Experiments with gene splicing

    And that's where he stopped reading for a second. Interest peaked, Shiroe tapped on experiments with the sun and slid to a random page, and started reading about an attempt by a looper to change the color of the sun to blue, "EH!?"
     
  2. You, sir, have my attention.
     
  3. Nero200

    Nero200 Heights of Mania

    Looks good so far, but I have yet to finish the LN's, am currently enjoying the anime, so Ima gonna bookmark this, and see you in a month of so when season 1 finishes, and I read the LN's out of impatience. :)
     
  4. Got to love Expansion sets. It happens in the MLP loops when new episodes have come out. Usually happens every couple hundred loops...I think, and the expansion moves everything forward by a week (human days), at least in MLP.
     
  5. Conceptualist

    Conceptualist Avatar updated for Halloween!

    the rule of thumb 4 expansion sets is it happens sporadically, and there is no real way too determine when it will happen.

    what this means is we can start writing loops based on new material released by the official owners of whatever we're writing about as soon as it is released.

    at least that's the way I understand it.
     
  6. I think the question to ask is, what does Log Horizon bring to the Infinite loops? Log Horizon has one of the most maliable code forms in the multiverse, and unlike Skiala protocols, it is very stable. This is because of the world, Elder Tale, because you can use your in universe skills to create something that never existed in the original Elder Tale.

    In addition, Shiroe has a similar mission to Twilight, in maintaining the stability of the loops. I think he would make Log Horizon another Sanctuary Loop.
     
    TheFabHawk and Satori like this.
  7. LordCirce

    LordCirce Worldbuilder from the Imaginarium

    It would certainly work well as a Sanctuary Loop, because of the fact that you can regenerate when you die, and the whole "lose a bit of your memory when you die" thing wouldn't really be an issue thanks to the Loops.
     
  8. Conceptualist

    Conceptualist Avatar updated for Halloween!

    I second that log horizon becomes a nother sanctuary loop. Where the MLP loops appear to be functioning as a place of peace and stability for loopers who are having trouble dealing with what the roots put them through, maybe log horizon could be a breath of fresh air kind of thing. Loopers can purposely lock and unlock their power sets, and the entire place is a video game...
     
    Satori likes this.
  9. Ok, time for a mini loop:

    Shiroe blinked as he awoke, standing in what appeared to be a passenger car on a train. His usual equipment was replaced with a set of long black robes and what appeared to be a school outfit. He gazed into space for several seconds, attempting to mentally call up his status screen, when the door sliding open ended his concentration. Before him stood an 11 year old boy with brown hair, old glasses and a black scar on his forehead. Shiroe raised his hand in greeting. The boy gave him a raised eyebrow, "Are you a looper?"

    Shiroe blinked, "Uh, yeah."

    The boy sighed, "Damn...did you cause it?"

    Shiroe raised his glasses as a gleam crossed them, "I'm not sure what you mean. Last I remember, I was storing a manuscript in my subspace pocket shortly before the loop was set to end. And then I was here, standing here alone."

    The boy crossed his arms and sighed, "Then it probably wasn't you. We better find the one responsible. I'm Harry by the way, Harry Potter."

    Shiroe offered his hand to shake, "My name's Kei Shirogane, but most people call me Shiroe. What did you mean earlier by 'did you cause it?'"

    Harry took it and the two walked down the train, "Right, new to the Hogwarts loops. Usually when another looper ends up here, someone destroyed their own universe. Yggdrasil doesn't like when that happens, and their loop unravels. Because most admins don't want to send their loopers to Eiken, they send them here if possible."

    The two passed by Fred and George Weasley, who were discussing new ideas for their future joke shop. Harry continued after they left the twin's car, "So, how many loops have you done?"

    Shiroe tapped his chin, "I think about a couple hundred. Yourself?"

    Harry shrugged, "Lost track eons ago. I'm one of the original five loopers, along with Ranma, Naruto, Shinji and Lina."

    The two continued talking until they came to the final car, where a navy haired girl with pink and purple highlights had her face buried in her hands, while another girl with silver hair looked at the two boys with mild interest. Harry seemed to recognize them, "Hey Twilight. I assume it was Trixie?"

    Twilight nodded. Harry rubbed his forehead and exited, intent on looking to see if other loopers were present and who had been replaced, hopefully not Anko. Trixie followed after him, deciding it was better to give Twilight some room. Twilight removed her hands and looked up, only now noticing the enchanter looper, "Ah, I'm sorry, my name is Twilight Sparkle, I'm from the Equestria loops."

    Shiroe gave a small grin, "Shiroe from the Elder Tale Loops. I run a guild called Log Horizon."

    He paused for a second as his eyes lit up, "Say, do you know a girl by the name Pinkie?"

    Twilight's gloomy attitude faded immediately, excitement taking over, "You know her? She hasn't been awake for the last dozen or so loops! How is she?"

    Shiroe took a step back, "Uh, yeah. She replaced Kanami, one of our Tea Party members, and spent much of the loops randomly using the Fairy Rings to travel all over the world to start a worldwide party...at least before she ended up in Japan and restarted the Debauchery Tea Party."

    The boy shook his head and chuckled to himself. Noticing Twilight's hesitant expression, Shiroe answered the unasked question, "It's just a name, a hangout where 27 adventurers hung out and completed high level raids on various dungeons and other quests."

    He sat down next to her, "Tell me about Equestria. Pinkie's explanation was so long winded I didn't catch any of it in the end...besides that you were ponies."

    The two continued chatting for quite awhile as the train moved ever closer to Hogwarts.
     
  10. Cause what? That doesn't seem to be explained in this snippet. Unless it wasn't important. Or I'm missing something.
     
  11. LordCirce

    LordCirce Worldbuilder from the Imaginarium

    Usually Hogwarts Fused Loops are the result of a new Looper crashing their Loop particularly hard. They were the original safe-mode Loop before Eiken. It is sort of an in-joke.
     
  12. what caused the fused loop
     
  13. Conceptualist

    Conceptualist Avatar updated for Halloween!

    I thought that it was what they used before d safe loop system was implemented? I guess it doesn't matter if the only functional difference is giving it a name.
     
  14. LordCirce

    LordCirce Worldbuilder from the Imaginarium

    Trixie blew up the Solar System in an accident involving her complete collection of fireworks, a massive patch of poison joke, Applejack's Cider, a pack of Timberwolves, Derpy Doo, and the Moon.
    Yeah, it wasn't called a safe-mode loop, but that was its essential function.
     
  15. Trixie being Trixie (explosive aficionado). I trying to imply this happens a lot. It probably involves lots of explosions.
     
  16. Hogwarts isn't a true safe-mode Loop, but the propensity for this happening is a holdover from when the only other option was Eiken.
     
  17. A person new to the loop setting wouldn't necessarily know that. It would probably be good to explain that somehow, say for instance, by Shiroe asking 'Caused what?' or something. Otherwise, its just going to confuse people.
     
    Conceptulist likes this.
  18. Edits made. For now though I'll keep what Trixie did vague, though I do like LordCircle's explanation.
     
  19. Looks good.
     
  20. Generalissimo

    Generalissimo Generalissimo of SpaceBattles

    I can imagine Coppellia, everyone's favorite Chinese gold farming bot, failing to realizing she's in a loop until something knocks her from her usual pattern.
     
    Roadie and Conceptulist like this.
  21. LordCirce

    LordCirce Worldbuilder from the Imaginarium

    Cool. And it's not a big deal, but it's Lord C-I-R-C-E, as in the Greek Witch, not Circle.
     
  22. I've tentatively titled these loops 1.3 and 1.4 because they probably take place before that Hogwarts loop. 1.3 is probably the loop directly after 1.2, which is why it's so short.

    Oh, and can I get my typo here fixed? I incorrectly remembered Shiroe's real name.


    ----------------------------------------
    1.3
    ----------------------------------------

    Shiroe - no, Kei while on Earth, he reminded himself firmly - laid back contentedly against the rock lining the hot springs of which he was the sole occupant.

    A little vacation really was just what he needed.


    ----------------------------------------
    1.4
    ----------------------------------------

    “Wow, you’re really a time-looping time-traveler from Earth, Kay-kun?” Kanami asked cheerfully as she walked backwards in front of him, the wind tugging playfully at her black, braided hair.

    This loop, Shiroe had replaced the high-level Lander - or ‘Ancient’ - character called Elias Hackblade, the ‘true hero’ in the mythos of Elder Tales. Now a Blademancer by class and named Kay Whiteblade, he found himself traveling overland from England to Japan in the company of Kanami, a level 90 Monk.

    Kanami had organized and lead the Debauchery Tea Party. Shiroe had been part of it, long before the Catastrophe, in his baseline. With her cheerful personality and childlike curiosity, she had only ever cared about making Elder Tales fun. Shiroe cared for her deeply enough that he had trouble categorizing it beyond ‘respect’. The Debauchery Tea Party had dissolved after Kanami had moved to another country in real life.

    He shook off his melancholy and nodded in response to Kanami’s question. “That’s right,” he agreed. Shiroe had Awakened in the middle of Kanami saving Kay from a ‘Genius’ monster - level 89, horrific in appearance, and somehow knowledgeable of Kay’s status as an NPC, a revelation which had driven Kay to despair before Kanami’s intervention.

    Kanami excelled at interventions, Shiroe thought.

    The monster lacked the power to withstand a Looper, of course. Able to circumvent the Ancient limitation on killing certain monsters, Shiroe had promptly dispatching the monster with a cross-class attack combination. Enchanter spells, Kannagi barriers, and Assassin attacks had combined wonderfully with Kay's Fairy Arts.

    Explaining afterwards had come naturally. He knew their companionship would last for only this loop; nevertheless, it eased something inside him to be open with her. He had guessed she would take it in stride, and she had, quite easily.

    Twirling around once, Kanami laughed with pure delight. “Wow, you must have seen so much!" she exclaimed with a sincere eagerness. "Do you do explore much? What sort of things have you seen?”

    Shiroe thought back to past loops. “There was an amusing incident one time when I was a Kannagi and training my Alchemist abilities. I happened to need rare ingredients,” he began the story.

    As he spoke, they continued walking together towards Ville Fleurie - Paris, France. Shiroe could only wonder what type of adventure would find Kanami next. He looked forward to every second of it.


    ----------------------------------------

    Notes:
    1.4 has Shiroe living Kanami's side story in a variant loop. Despite what it may look like, I am not shipping Shiroe with Kanami. As far as I can tell, Kanami is basically the Log Horizon version of Luffy. She drags people into her orbit, and they stay there despite the insanity that she launches them into. (Continuing the One Piece comparison, Shiroe would be Robin? ...Now I want to write a fusion.)

    I figure it's probably not uncommon for Log Horizon loopers to have changed classes/subclasses/races in otherwise normal loops, seeing as those would be choices they made while thinking it was still a game.
     
  23. Oh, going back to the earlier discussion of Log Horizon as a sanctuary loop: would that really work out? I'm assuming that the Looper subclass negates EXP loss associated with ressurection to avoid looper stability issues, but...

    For the average non-looper, the world is not good. Landers have to worry about evil monsters and evil players. Adventurers have it bad, too: people were ripped from their homes and families with no warning or explanation, tasteless food is part of the average diet (even after the cooking revelation because of supply problems), and some of the players turn into unrepentant killers and rapists (jailing Adventurers is difficult thanks to the 'Call of Home' spell and the option of suicide). Most of the Adventurers do adjust to a more cheerful outlook, at least in Akiba, but this takes time and can't truly be forced.

    In any case, rather than a handful of major villains or some petty snobbery and meanness, Shiroe has to deal with societal-level issues and, more importantly, with thousands of people being people instead of ponies. Sufficient applications of power don't solve everything.

    ...

    Anyhow, here's what I actually came here to post. Have another loop.

    ----------------------------------------
    1.5
    ----------------------------------------

    Shiroe adjusted his glasses as he stared at the contents on the floor of his office. Placing one hand on a stack of papers and dragonhide leather, both from his subspace pocket, he used a Scribe skill: Publisher. When he lifted his hand away, there were thirteen high-quality hardcover books left behind.

    He traced his fingers over the front cover of the book on the top of the stack. The title proclaimed, ‘The Fairy Rings of Theldesia, Volume 1: Yamato Region.’ No author was listed.

    Opening the book, he checked to make sure that it had been created properly from the pages that he had printed back on Earth. For every entry, one page displayed a map chart of Theldesia taken straight from an Elder Tales screencap. On the next page, information about the location was listed. Each of the next twelve pages showed four moon phases and listed the destination for every hour of the day. The destination names were paired with the appropriate volume and page number for reference.

    In short, he had crafted an encyclopedia-sized Ring travel guide.

    Everything appeared to have gone well. Satisfied, Shiroe withdrew more stacks of paper and leather and many sets of ink bottles from his pocket. Applying another Scribe skill, Copy, left him with with enough copies of the original set to fill a large bookcase. He smiled as he stuffed them all into his subspace pocket.

    Traveling with Kanami had galvanized Shiroe. Traveling across continents, it was impossible to not appreciate the vastness of Theldesia. Distances being half what they would have been on Earth meant that the world itself had a mere quarter of the surface area of Earth, but that meant nothing when so much of the world was a mob-peppered wilderness and lacked modern forms of transportation.

    Travel distances had always limited his actions. Early on in the Theldesia timeline, his most reliable transportation was his gryphon mount. Its average speed never surpassed 40 kilometers per hour, and high-level mobs prevented it from bypassing certain areas.

    The Fairy Rings circumvented many of those issues. However, hard-to-find or hard-to-reach locations, potentially dangerous destinations, and constantly shifting destinations meant that remembering what went where and when an extraordinarily difficult task.

    Now Shiroe had mitigated that issue. Moreover, as the books appeared to be proper Elder Tales item, no one would suspect something strange if he pulled out a book to reference it.

    Shiroe stretched languidly. The entire world of Theldesia was finally open to him. It was truly a shame that his attempts to magic up fixes to the dormant inter-city transport gates had all ended rather… catastrophically.

    Really, how was he to have expected that the failed spell’s backlash would result in the all of the city’s clothing being forcibly unequipped? That was one loop he was glad Akatsuki couldn’t remember.
     
    buytbuyt, enderverse, Nai and 15 others like this.

  24. On the other hand, you're basically in a world where most of your neighbors are essentially immortal superheroes, every last plot hook (provided you aren't replacing a major player, and maybe even then) is explicitly optional, and if all else fails you can hole up in areas that are able to literally ban who you're trying to get away from. Sanctuary in Elder Tales may be less enforceable without the Elements of Harmony sending problematic loopers to the moon, but it's not impossible.
     
    Conceptulist and LordCirce like this.
  25. LordCirce

    LordCirce Worldbuilder from the Imaginarium

    Also, given the new "intro to the multiverse" menus and such, it would probably be a good place for New Loopers to get sent in order to learn about their abilities and such.

    Which gets me in mind of the old Ditech commercials:

    ---

    Megamind sat up in bed. He glanced at his hands, and then jumped slightly. His hands appeared to have been replaced by odd claws. As he examined the rest of his room, knowledge started to filter in. He was...he was a Lego. Apparently, he was President Badness, and...he had never heard of this Loop before!

    "I can do my presentation!"

    ---

    Emmett woke up chained to a table again. He had decided to go and get the Piece of Resistance early this time around, but he had forgotten how trippy the visions were. It seemed that Bad Cop had picked him up again. As Emmett debated whether to play up the "I'm nobody" angle, the doors burst open to reveal President...Badness?

    He was blue, and wearing a similar ensemble to what President Business usually wore, and he was caring a rather large whiteboard.

    "Ok! So, all the security is turned off, and you are a Looper! Aren't you? Please say you are!" The new President dropped to his knees in front of the table, hands clasped in front of him.

    "Uhhhhhhh, yes. Yes I am." Emmett spoke slowly.

    "Yes! Alright, so, your world, your entire universe, is just one in a grand tree of..."

    "Oh yeah, I remember this bit."

    President Badness turned to look at him. "Eh?"

    "Yeah. Last Loop. I had fingers, like the Man and Kid Upstairs, and this guy, Sheerow, or something, showed me how to..."

    "NOOOOO!" President Badness dropped to his knees. "Curse You! Lost another Looper to Log Horizon! Why? Why?!"

    Emmett sat there, shifting uncomfortably, then he carefully disassembled his chains and chair, turning them into a jet pack. "Well, uh, I'll just be going then. To somewhere that is certainly not Cloudy Cutie Land. Uh, yeah. Bye."
     

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