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Genius Mechanic

Genius Mechanic: Chapter 173

Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone (Galactic Ranking Competition)

173. 7 Day Position Capture Battle

Proofread by Cloud Chip Cake and An Zheee 

The Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone, Dawn Galaxy’s League hasn’t activated this zone for the tournament in two seasons. This Contaminated Zone has always been on the League’s reserve list for A-Grade Contaminated Zones but has rarely been activated.

On the one hand, an enormous amount of this Contaminated Zone’s area encompassed the sea, with almost 99% of it being sea. The seawater is heavily polluted, with a consistent contamination value of 6000. On the other hand, there are numerous large and fierce pollutants in the Contaminated Zone’s sea, with A-Level pollutants rampant. In the polar night areas that were difficult for the Alliance to monitor, there were S-Level pollutants.

This Contaminated Zone seems like it has simple terrain, but it’s far more dangerous than other Contaminated Zones.

After Jiang Simiao briefed KID on the situation on Agaman Sea Star, he said, “This time, we really have to pull out all the stops. For Gale, you know about their thunder series weapons, and for Black Crow, you’ve dealt with them before, their main Artillery uses ice-based weapons… Let’s not even consider the weapons’ anomalies for now. With their expertise in this type of combat, coupled with the aquatic map, the difficulty for us to seize a position in the rankings has also increased.”

Dawn Galaxy’s ranking matches had always been within the same Contaminated Zone, with the top 8 teams contesting.

Simply put, it’s a big melee among the 8 teams… In this year’s melee, the usual semi-finalist teams lost BZZL1, but strong teams like Gale, Black Crow, and YDS were still in the running. Besides them, the other mecha teams advancing to the top 8 are also formidable.

With less than half a month until the ranking match begins, KID’s arsenal only consisted of the batch Ying Chenling originally intended to prepare. This time around, they obtained several rare anomalous crystals at the appraisal meeting, but in terms of designs and their casting period, they wouldn’t be ready in time for the galaxy’s ranking match.

Their disadvantage in battle preparations became evident during the ranking match. While other teams could adjust their weapons, they could only continue using their original batch.

“However, you don’t need to feel too pressured,” Shen Xingtang paused slightly. “We have already secured our place in the top 8. In the ranking match, we’ll strive for a higher position, but we don’t necessarily have to confront strong teams like Gale head-on.”

In the first year of the new tournament system, being able to return to the top 8 was already a very good result.

Although Shen Xingtang said this, the rest of KID didn’t relax at all.

People are inherently greedy; Now they’d gone beyond their original goal, KID’s mecha pilots only wanted to do even better.

In the next half month, even without Jiang Simiao’s supervision, KID’s mecha pilots conscientiously trained in the training room. In the maintenance room, all the Competition-Level mechas had already been repaired. Repairs were one thing; several mechas had also been equipped with new weapons.

In the blink of an eye, it was just a few days before the ranking match. Their sponsor, Boss Zhou, was also going to the venue to watch the game on-site this time. His private spaceship carried all of KID’s members, saving them the hassle of scrambling for discounted flight tickets and squeezing into small cabins. Shen Xingtang knew about this situation and deliberately enlarged the size of their gold master father’s promotional banners.

Of the three major tournaments in the Dawn Galaxy, the most grandiose is the ranking match.

Last season’s tournament was abruptly halted due to the Back Hole incident during the qualifiers, and it remained suspended for nearly a year. Now, it has been exactly two years since the last ranking match was held. Even before the ranking match began, outside the Agaman Sea Star venue, a large crowd had already gathered, filling every seat. Fans of various teams were enthusiastically showing their support, creating a lively atmosphere everywhere.

As usual, KID posted a pre-match update on their official blog after arriving at the venue. No one criticized their identical posts anymore. What was worth mentioning was KID’s deep affection for their sponsor, Jianheng Technology. Even the backgrounds of their departure photos weren’t the beautiful Agaman Sea Star but rather Jianheng Technology’s billboards.

The group of mecha pilots walked into the venue of the ranking match with renewed vigor. From the setup inside the venue to its scale, it was obvious that the match was a grand event. After all mecha pilots had registered, it was time for each participating team to enter.

“Old Zhao’s team is ahead,” Ji Qingfeng observed, noticing that their entry position was quite forward.

Jiang Simiao remarked, “As the first in Group A, even Black Crow has to line up behind us… But be careful today, for the ranking match, the leaders of the Dawn Alliance are all sitting in the rostrum!”

Lin Yao jumped up and looked ahead, then asked upon landing, “Ah? San Shui, are you afraid of the Alliance leaders?”

Jiang Simiao was speechless. “Do you even know why Agaman was chosen for this match?!”

Before Jiang Simiao could explain further, it was KID’s turn for the broadcast outside the venue. Under Huo Yan’s command at the forefront, everyone immediately followed him out.

“Friends from all over the Star Alliance, the top 8 ranking match of the Dawn Galaxy League will begin in an hour. This is the official live broadcast room, and the competition area is the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone in the Dawn Galaxy.” The commentator in the official broadcast room looked towards the competition venue. “Now approaching us is the team that ranked third in the qualifiers, the KID team—”

Dressed uniformly in red and white, they emerged with varying heights, with members spanning all ages.

【I don’t know why, but every time KID appears, I feel like laughing.】

【I’ve been following them for several months, how come they never line up when they come out???】

【Isn’t this concave? The tall ones are on the outside and all the short ones are on the inside.】

Lin Yao walked among the crowd, squinting as he looked outward: “Why do I see a sign saying something about seafood?”

“What seafood?” Ji Qingfeng only saw his own ID. “I see my fans; the banners are really huge.”

Lu Xi said nervously, “I’m feeling a bit tense.”

Jiang Simiao comforted them before the match, “It’s okay if we don’t win. Don’t be nervous. Worst case, we’ll gather more pollutants to recoup our losses.”

Huo Yan chuckled, “Let’s relax. If we lose, we’ll come back next year.”

The broadcast cut to KID, and the side of the screen showed that KID’s support banners had changed to a new style.

On StarNet, viewers watching the match had become accustomed to KID’s unique non-queue support style. Seeing this kind of support, many people even laughed out loud.

【Hilarious, does KID even have any sense of ‘b’? 1

【I’ve been laughing since I saw the competition area is Agaman. I suspect the League’s deliberately targeting them.】

【But they have to play in Agaman, right? Haven’t you seen these top 8 teams? Which one isn’t strong in firepower?】

【What’s with the terrain this year? The League even brought out dangerous areas like Agaman.】

The camera followed each member of KID until they reached the rest area.

KID’s rest area was prominently positioned for chiefly promoting Jianheng Technology. The setup was excellent, and as the camera swept over KID’s rest area, viewers could immediately see the extremely large promotional advertisements.

The pre-match entrance ceremony went by very quickly, and soon all eight teams completed the process, followed by the mecha pilots and maintenance personnel entering.

For this ranking match, Shen Xingtang was KID’s mechanic, while Grandpa Gu and Jiang Simiao sat in the rest area. Even Eric, the base’s doctor who rarely accompanies KID on their frequent travels, was present. There was one more person in the rest area, and the broadcast studio started calculating how much the new face, Eric, would be earning.

On both sides of KID’s rest area were the familiar Gale and YDS. They were squeezed between the two large bases. Jiang Simiao had just turned around and saw Zhang Ge, the person in charge of Gale, coming out of Gale’s rest area. Upon seeing this, he said, “Long time no see, Zhang Ge. Have you been working out lately?”

“More or less,” Zhang Ge replied. He had been training with Gale all this time, and this training cycle included selling the minerals that KID had scavenged from Kemu Cave. With such high-intensity work, it would be strange if he didn’t lose weight.

After greeting Jiang Simiao, his gaze fell on KID’s doctor. For some reason, from his appearance, he couldn’t help but feel like this person looked very expensive.

Dr. Eric noticed the gaze and gave Zhang Ge a broad, toothy smile.

Zhang Ge: “…”

Why are the people from KID so weird?

Inside the venue, the mecha pilots of each team had already entered.

In the Jump Zone, mecha pilots needed to register. After entering, Ying Chenlin saw the mecha pilots from other teams in the distance.

This time, besides Gale, YDS, Black Crow, and them, the remaining four teams in the top 8 were Scorpion King, Empty Cicada, FQJ, and Magician. Among these four, only Magician was a newly promoted team, while the other three were former top 8 or top 16 teams in the Dawn Galaxy, all quite strong.

The rules for the ranking match hadn’t been released yet, and no information about the Agaman Contaminated Zone was provided on-site. After all the mecha pilots registered, they were instructed to enter their cockpits.

[System entering pre-jump stage. Maintenance personnel confirmed. Now proceeding with mecha pilot position confirmation.] [Confirmation complete. KID: 6/6 mechas confirmed. Data loading.]

After Ying Chenlin pressed confirm, the jump process began. When he opened his eyes again, he was met with an endless expanse of ocean.

At the same time, a reminder popped up on his visual screen.

[Welcome to the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone. The match mode is [Seven-Day Position Capture Battle].] [Loading complete. The rule book has been issued to each of your systems. Please check it promptly.]

“Seven-Day Position Capture Battle!?” Seeing the format, Ji Qingfeng was stunned for a moment. “It isn’t the usual big brawl?”

In the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone live broadcast room, when all the mechas entered, the rules for the Seven-Day Position Capture Battle were announced, and viewers in the live broadcast room focused on the introduction to the rules.

[Seven-Day Position Capture Battle: All mechas enter the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone for 7 days (168 hours). Mecha pilots need to head to specific underwater flag points within the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone. The team that occupies a flag point gains survival rights. Every 24 hours, one flag point in the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone will close. Teams without survival rights will be eliminated. The match lasts for 7 days until the last flag point is closed. The team occupying the final flag point at the end of the 7 days will be the winner.] [Please note: This match does not use a performance points system. A flag point must be fully occupied for 10 minutes. Each day, the flag points’ locations will be refreshed and reset, clearing each team’s occupation records. The flag point map will be distributed through the match system channel upon refresh. Please check it promptly.]

In the live broadcast room, seeing that the ranking match didn’t adopt the usual battle royale mode but instead used a position capture battle mode, the viewers’ puzzled comments filled the bullet screen.

Official live broadcast commentator A explained to the viewers: “A position capture battle format has appeared in Star Domain competitions before, but this is the first time Dawn has used this mechanism in a ranking match. Simply put, the main goal in this type of battle mode is to capture flag points. With eight teams, a flag point will be reduced each day, meaning there’ll inevitably be clashes during the capture process, and even the possibility of multi-party skirmishes.”

【Is it about capturing points? This match looks simpler than the promotion match.】

【It’s not simple at all! This rule is full of pitfalls. Haven’t you seen the seabed, brother!?】

“Many viewers have doubts about this match. It’s definitely not of low difficulty. The match area is the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone. We can see that the seven flag points for the first day have already been revealed, and all these flag points are located underwater,” commentator B continued. “The Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone’s seabed is full of pollutants. When mechas enter the sea for combat and dive deep, it’ll test the mecha pilots’ underwater combat abilities.”

Mechas have oxygen cabins, which not only have backup oxygen reserves but also convert oxygen from the atmospheric environment through the mecha’s system. This special form of oxygen conversion allows a mecha’s oxygen cabin to be used in various special contaminated environments. However, an underwater environment lacks oxygen, and a gas conversion system cannot function properly within it.

In other words, for mecha pilots to fight freely underwater, short-term combat is not an issue, but for long-term combat, they need to take into account the problems with oxygen conversion.

Their oxygen cabin conversions are just one issue. The bigger challenge is the large amount of pollutants on the seabed. The Agaman Contaminated Zone hasn’t been opened for several years, and the pollutants that have accumulated in its sea are numerous. The mecha pilots participating in the competition not only have to consider their competitors but also the problem of pollutants.

【I just looked at the locations of the flag points; they’re surrounded by pollutants.】

【No wonder this match allows mecha pilots to carry more energy tubes. It makes sense in this environment.】

【There are too many pitfalls. Didn’t you see that the locations of the flag points are open to all eight teams? This means there could be multiple teams vying for the same point at the same time.】

The fights will happen underwater, surrounded by pollutants, and there could be multiple teams fighting for a single point, which will inevitably lead to battles.

Everyone in the live broadcast room looked at the coordinates of each team’s leap position, they were basically outside the sea areas with the flag points. The flag points were scattered across the entire Agaman Sea Star. Although this planet isn’t very large, flying around it still takes a lot of time. Their decisions and choices will significantly impact their results.

Inside the Agaman Sea Star Contaminated Zone, as the rule book was issued, all the mecha pilots began to take action.

Among them, the old top four teams, such as Gale, had the fastest response. Upon seeing the refreshed flag point information, they immediately headed to the nearest flag point. Not only that, but these teams also dispatched their Stealth mechas, specialized in reconnaissance, to scout the other locations of the flag points.

In KID’s communication channel, as the flag points appeared, Ying Chenlin had already started thinking. While they advanced towards a flag point, he observed the conditions of the various sea areas within the Contaminated Zone. The flag points were marked clearly, and to ensure fairness, each team’s starting distance from the flag points should be roughly the same.

Ying Chenlin first calculated the locations of the flag points based on their initial location, roughly estimating the possible leap positions of the other teams. “We should avoid the nearest flag point; it might collide with three other teams. Aiming for a more central flag point may be better.”

“Should we split up to find the points?” Huo Yan asked.

Ying Chenlin replied, “On the first day, it’s best not to split up and stick together.”

【No wonder they’re in the top eight; their response speeds are impressive.】

【In this format, it’s best to occupy a point on the first day, as long as you don’t encounter opponents.】

【But there will be fights no matter what. One team will inevitably miss out on a point and have to fight for it.】

In the midst of the lively discussion in the live broadcast room, several situations had already occurred within the arena. Mechas were flying over the sea areas, and the energy reactions and mental fluctuations caused by their flight attracted the attention of pollutants in various parts of the Agaman Contaminated Zone. Teams with multiple mechas in flight were attacked by pollutants from the seabed, forcing them to increase their flight altitude.

However, the Agaman Contaminated Zone also contained airborne pollutants, making it easy for the mechas to be attacked even at higher altitudes.

【There are way too many pollutants in this Contaminated Zone!】

【It’s not that bad yet; this is still the surface. There’ll be more when they dive to the seabed.】

In the live broadcast room, the viewers with their all-encompassing view watched the directions the various teams took within the arena. It wasn’t just KID that was calculating; many teams encountered a large number of pollutants on their shortest routes to the flag points, forcing them to change their directions. Teams like Gale, Black Crow, and YDS also altered their routes to avoid too much conflict with the pollutants.

Due to the interference from the pollutants, the target points of the various teams began to overlap.

More teams were attacked by pollutants, and those that weren’t became the lucky ones in the eyes of the viewers.

【KID is so lucky! They’ve been flying for so long without encountering any pollutants?】

【I don’t know what to say about this team’s luck.】

【… No, for them, this might actually be bad luck.】

This sea area of the Agaman Contaminated Zone was calm, with the blue ocean stretching as far as the eye could see, not looking like a heavily polluted area whatsoever.

Lin Yao had dipped his Spatial Staff into the water to stir it around, but hadn’t seen a single pollutant. “Didn’t they say this Contaminated Zone’s crawling with A-Level pollutants?”

Ji Qingfeng: “That’s strange. The information clearly stated otherwise, and the officials claimed that there’s an 85% chance of encountering pollutants. Who calculated this data? Isn’t this deceiving people?”

He looked at the uncooperative sea with a sense of resignation. “I’ll shout with the loudspeaker. If that doesn’t work, we’ll just dive when we reach the flag point.”

Several red-and-white mechas were flying low over the water. The two mechas at the front were skimming the water, reminiscent of an old-fashioned duck herding scene, but there were neither ducks nor pollutants in sight. Perhaps out of frustration, KID’s Stealth mecha even brought out its loudspeaker, but shouting at the sea seemed to be ineffective.

【What kind of luck is this…】

【Stop shouting, it won’t work over the sea.】

【Don’t they know how to enjoy their good fortune?】

【WTF, WTF, is KID heading towards the central sea area!?】

Meanwhile, in the live broadcast room, the commentators who were constantly monitoring the radar signals of each team’s mechas noticed multiple mechas moving towards the same location.

“Four teams are heading towards the central sea area, which has two flag points,” the commentator quickly caught on to the situation. “Black Crow and YDS are both moving there, along with KID and Scorpion King! If this continues, these four teams are definitely going to clash.”

The live broadcast viewers became excited when they saw Black Crow and KID heading in the same direction.

【F*ck, Black Crow and KID might clash right at the start!】

【This is intense!】

【YDS is a bit further away, so it’s likely to be a three-way fight.】

Their previous battle at Kemu Cave ended too abruptly. Black Crow and KID didn’t even have a chance to engage each other. While other teams may or may not be able to fight, these two teams meeting without exchanging a few rounds would be a pity. Moreover, there was also Scorpion King’s team nearby, heading towards the same flag point. With three teams vying for one point, they’ll definitely have to fight it out.

Noticing that KID and Black Crow were getting closer, the commentary in the live broadcast room sped up a bit. He said, “Dear viewers, Black Crow has shaken off the pursuit of pollutants. They’re all heading towards the target flag point. Right now, the distance between Black Crow and KID is less than 10 kilometers.”

Everyone’s gaze turned to the protagonists on both sides, watching as their coordinates on the omniscient radar view got closer and closer. A revenge battle seemed to unfold before the audience’s eyes.

【What’s KID doing? Speed up!】

【Hurry up and seize the initiative!】

“Damn it! It’s here!” Ji Qingfeng’s voice echoed through everyone’s ears.

【What’s coming?!】

【Did KID spot Black Crow?】

【Is KID really that strong? Faster than Black Crow!?!】

Just as several mechas were less than 3 kilometers apart, KID, who had been idling on the calm sea surface searching for pollutants, suddenly stopped. Immediately, a huge tentacle shot up from underwater, encircling the nearest KID mecha and pulling it swiftly below the water’s surface.

Ji Qingfeng shouted, “It’s got me! Yao Bao, assist!”

Lin Yao replied urgently, “On my way! Don’t let it escape!”

The echo of Ji Qingfeng’s shout seemed to linger as another mecha lifted a staff high and plunged it forcefully into the sea right before everyone’s eyes.

Those in the live broadcast room: “?”

The commentator, just about to stir up the excitement, paused: “?”

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Translator Notes
  1. Basically asking if they have an idea of the situation in their mind but in a more vulgar sense. Like, “Does KID  have any f*cking idea?” It is also a Northern dialect asking if someone is r*tarded or playing dumb.[]
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