World of Masks – Chapter 4
A wolf the size of a house was rushing toward him. He didn’t think it would end well if he was bitten by that drooling mouth filled with sharp teeth.
Jin-suk slashed a sword in his hand at the wolf while thinking, ‘I could get rabies or something if I was bitten for real.’
Jin-suk stared at his hand while clicking his tongue. The senses were dull, as if he was wearing 10 pairs of carpentry gloves, everything seemed to be only 1/10 of reality.
Though it looked like human skin, Jin-suk, who was still looking at his character’s hand and felt that it had an awkward and rubbery feeling, kicked the corpse of another wolf in front of him. But it was impossible to do anymore damage to the wolf that had already lost all of its HP.
Therefore, Jin-suk’s foot passed through the wolf’s body in vain.
Looking at the disappearing body of the wolf, Jin-suk kicked the ground hard.
However, the touch sensations were only 1/10 so even the feeling of kicking the ground was subtle.
Eventually Jin-suk, who was annoyed, ended the game.
As he exited the virtual reality capsule, Jin-suk roughly threw away the headset. He felt that he was boiling so he decided to go to the kitchen and get some cold water from the dispenser.
The cool sensation that flowed through his body seemed to help the irritation he felt, subside slightly.
The feeling of guilt he had felt toward his parents in the flower shop earlier in the day had quickly become annoyance. Then the annoyance developed into a desire for violence and pleasure.
A desire to kill filled him.
In a hurry, he entered his favorite virtual reality game and vented his anger on all the monsters he could find there, but he still wasn’t satisfied.
No, instead it seemed to awaken his appetite.
He couldn’t help it.
Now, the only way for Jin-suk to relieve his desire was to find a game that was a better virtual imitation of reality. But that was in itself a hard task.
In order to prevent intense feedback and reactions in their players, the sensations in games were usually 1/10 of those in reality.
In addition the bodies made of shapes and code which appeared awkward at times, could never catch Jin-suk’s eye.
‘I thought I would be fine for at least three months.’
He had been quite satisfied with his last hunt, so he thought that it would be quite some time before he got the urge to hunt again.
However, it now seemed like it would be hard for him to maintain his state for even another week.
‘Although I’m not fully healed yet. I can’t help it.’
As he thought this, Jin-suk stroked the knife wounds on his arm through his clothes while pulling on a jacket.
He decided to head down the back alleys. His objective was to find a prey that he could hunt and beat legally.
[The victim was found around 6:30 yesterday evening. He was found by his mother who had visited her son after she couldn’t contact him. From the state of decay, the police believe that the victim had been deceased for 5 days before they were found. The victim, who lived alone, was found wearing a virtual game headset which is why the police believe that he died from a heart attack due to excess feedback while playing the game World of Masks. With this new victim, the number of deaths from the World of Masks game this year has risen to 396 worldwide and the police commissioner has released a statement…]
The chilly weather made him cringe slightly in his overcoat. As he looked at the TV screen in an electronics store, Jin-suk warmed his hands in front of his face.
The World of Masks.
It was a game that pursued extreme reality that had been a big sensation when it was first released half a year ago.
At that time, Jin-suk had been taking care of his parents who had been laying in hospital beds because of the car accident.
Media all around the world praised the game and the public opinion was extremely high because they thought that a true virtual reality game had finally appeared.
This caused the stock prices of other virtual reality game companies to fall sharply.
However, that reaction didn’t last very long.
As virtual reality games continued to develop, so did the laws to regulate them.
There was a difference between killing a person or a monster with a mouse click behind a screen and killing a person or a monster with a weapon in virtual reality.
Being able to kill people in virtual reality could mean that you’d be able to do the same in reality.
So as virtual reality games developed, so did the concerns.
Therefore, governments around the world developed policies to limit those virtual reality games.
Typical examples were the restrictions of PK, the prohibition of the appearance of human looking monsters and a realism limit of 1/10.
However, the World of Masks largely ignored most of those laws.
The realism was very high, at least 2/3 that of reality and even the restriction on PK was removed.
Naturally, this caused governments to step in to regulate the World of Masks.
However, they were left in shock. The developer who had produced and distributed World of Masks turned out to be a ghost company.
In response, governments around the world desperately tried to gather information, to regulate and restrict the game but couldn’t find anything.
It was as if the game World of Masks had fallen from the sky.
Eventually, there was an incident which caused the public opinion to switch from excitement, to concern.
A man died.
The government analysts concluded that the pain in the game was fed back to the player which caused shock.
Subsequently, more and more deaths began to occur and the governments decided collectively to ban the game.
However, it was impossible to completely eradicate the World of Masks.
Not only the head office, but even the location of the servers were impossible to find, moreover, the method of access and the operation of the game execution tool were all unknown.
Therefore, it could not be eliminated.
Once it became banned, the World of Masks became even more sought after and it no longer needed any advertising. The sensations were almost equal to reality and the restrictions like PK were all removed. It was the only game of its kind.
But the number of deaths also increased. Somehow, even though the country imposed heavy sanctions, players of World of Masks did not disappear.
And the number of deaths didn’t decrease.
Jin-suk stepped closer to the TV.
This catch phrase stood out to him more than anything else.
After his parents died, he was definitely on the path to ruin. With them not around, he could no longer resist the temptations for violence and murder that boiled inside of him.
It was only after his parents died that he started hunting.
And now, under such circumstances, he’d stumbled upon a game like this.
He wondered if playing that game would be as good as hunting in reality, but there was no way for him to find it.
As it was a banned item, the country strictly forbade the possession or distribution of World of Masks.
So now he was faced with a dilemma.
With a sigh, Jin-suk entered an alley and was immediately greeted by a bad smell. Looking at the scenery which was completely different from the normal streets downtown, he walked at a fast pace.
Robbery, assault or rape. Jin-suk went deeper into the alleys to find someone who could satisfy his needs.
In front of him, was an old man.
He hid grey hair under a fedora and had a nice mustache under his nose. Wearing a clean black suit with black trousers and a red bow tie on top of his prim white shirt that was mostly covered by his suit. He had clean white gloves and well-groomed black shoes that would probably shine brightly if there was enough light.
In his hand, the old man held a cane, completing the look of a gentleman who seemed to have jumped out of the pages of a book.
The old man knocked his cane across the floor a few times and laughed loudly.
“Nice to meet you. Mr. Kim Jin-suk.”
Jin-suk felt like the old man’s smile was very bright.
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