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The King's Avatar (Chinese: 全职高手; Pinyin: Quán Zhí Gāo Shǒu; literally "All-Class Expert", but also known as "Full-Time Expert" or "Master of Skill") is a Chinese Web Serial Novel with physical Light Novel releases, written by Butterfly Blue (蝴蝶蓝; Pinyin: Hu Die Lan).

Set in mainland China, "Glory" is a Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game with over 130 million players worldwide, even earning status as a professional sport. Protagonist Ye Xiu is a 10-year Glory veteran and professional player for the "Excellent Era" team, captaining its players to three consecutive championships, earning him fame as the "Battle God" of the game. Unfortunately, The King's Avatar begins with his forced, unceremonious retirement from Excellent Era, getting kicked out of the team and thrown into the cold (literally), even forced to give up his Glory character "One Autumn Leaf". By chance, Ye Xiu wanders into a nearby Internet cafe, where he applies for a job as a night-shift manager from its owner Chen Guo, a Glory player herself and an Excellent Era fangirl. Thankfully, the job offers free room and board, along with access to a computer, which Ye Xiu makes the most of; however, upon hearing news Glory is about to open its tenth server, he decides to re-play the game from the very bottom, using a new character called "Lord Grim", dedicating to a Character Class no one has played in Glory for years: an Unspecialized character. As Lord Grim's notoriety increases by pulling off feats such as achieving the first boss kills and the fastest times in completing dungeons and raids, new and veteran Glory players slowly deduce Lord Grim is used by a Living Legend, having returned to the fold.


Unlike other stories centered around an MMORPG, The King's Avatar has no Fantasy-, isekai- or Science Fiction-related elements: rather, it keeps itself firmly rooted in Real Life. Glory is simply a video game, yet the series examines the intricacies of the environment, politics and corporate dealings and sponsorships of the professional "eSports" scene, where its fans and players treat it like an equivalent to Association Football leagues. Furthermore, expect explicit use of strategies and terms most players are familiar with for the MMO genre, such as being able to calculate Cooldown times for character's abilities and skills, determining hand speed with the keyboard and mouse, and knowing an opponent's weaknesses and exploiting them correctly.

An English translation of the web novel can be found here. Meanwhile, other Derivative Works for The King's Avatar include the following:

  • A Prequel of 24 chapters written by the same author Butterfly Blue called The King's Avatar - For The Glory (Chinese: 全职高手番外之巅峰荣耀; Pinyin: Quán Zhí Gāo Shǒu Fān Wài Zhī Diān Fēng Róng Yào; literally "The King's Avatar Side-Story Peak/Top Glory"). First published in 2015, it covers the events from 5-10 years before the start of the main novel, detailing Ye Xiu during his first championship run with Excellent Era, as well as the origins of the other teams including Tyranny, Hundred Blossoms, Tiny Herb, and Blue Rain. The original version can be found here, while the official English translation can be found here.
    • A film entitled The King's Avatar: For The Glory was released on August 16, 2019, based on the Prequel web novel. Trailers can be, found here.
  • A Manhua serialized in Da Jiao Chong APP since 2015, written and illustrated by Chang Pan Yong Zhe and D.Lan. It is currently discontinued.
    • A new, ongoing, full-color manhua began serialization in 2020, published by Yuewen and illustrated by TAKU. The original can be found here. The official English translation can be found on Webnovel here. It currently updates weekly.
  • A Twelve Episode Animated Adaptationnote  began airing in April 7, 2017 (lining up with the Spring 2017 Anime season), produced by Tencent Penguin Pictures and helmed by G.CMAY Animation & Film (the same studio behind Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation: Mo Dao Zu Shi, Cupid's Chocolates and Shuangsheng Lingtan). An official English sub on YouTube by Tencent can be found here.
    • A three-episode original net animation called The King's Avatar SPnote  follows-up the first season, released on April 27, 2018, and produced by Colored-Pencil Animation Design and Tencent Penguin Pictures. SP loosely adapts the events of the 6th Glory All-Star Competition.
    • A second season, The King's Avatar 2, began airing on September 25, 2020, also produced by Colored-Pencil Animation Design and Tencent Penguin Pictures, as a Twelve Episode original net animation. An official English sub on YouTube by Tencent can be found here.
  • A web-based Live-Action Adaptation began broadcasting on July 24, 2019, with 40 episodes released on Tencent Video, and produced by Tencent Penguin Pictures; it's also available on Netflix in some countries. This drama series broadly adapts the web novel, upwards to roughly the first 1000 chapters. Tencent has confirmed that a second season will be released sometime in the future.

The King's Avatar provide examples of:

  • 11th-Hour Superpower: In the last match of the TV series, Qiao Yifan demonstrates a new technique which even Ye Xiu (one of the founding members of the eSports league who is known as the "Glory Textbook" due to his extensive knowledge of the game) has never seen before. It's strongly implied that Qiao Yifan was only able to discover it because he practices twice as hard as any other player, and it may be because the Ghostblade isn't a popular enough class for other top players to have figured it out. The fact that the game has millions of subscribers and has been online for at *least* 10 years, makes this discovery surprising to say the least.
  • The Ace: Among professional players, at least five of them have been given epitaphs for their overall skills and use of specific Character Classes - Ye Xiu ("Battle God"), Huang Shaotian ("Sword Saint"), Han Wenqing ("King of Fighting"), Wang Jiexi ("Magician") and Zhou Zekai ("Great Gunner"). Likewise, "Master Tactician" is a title awarded to four players who are the best at being The Strategist - Ye Xiu, Yu Wenzhou, Xiao Shiqin and Zhang Xinjie.
  • Adaptation Distillation: Due to the exceptionally large number of chapters for a series that spans over 1700, Derivative Works will often pull this.
    • Su Muqiu's silhouette showing up during the early chapters is cut for the animation; instead, it's replaced by a brief Flashback.
    • Glory avatars such as "Thousand Creations" and "Endless Night" are Adapted Out: in particular, "Cold Night" fills in the latter's role. Moreover, the party Ye Xiu meets through "Sleeping Moon" have reduced roles despite being recurring characters in the Manhua and web novel. Similarly, the live-action removes entire professional teams and their respective players in the league in order to fit the already bloated cast, alongside combining certain characters as one person.
    • Bao Rongxing meets Ye Xiu in-person for the first time somewhere past Chapter 600 in the web novel: the animation changes their meet-up to roughly Chapter 150, a little while after Ye Xiu "trains" with members of professional team "Tiny Herb".
  • And the Adventure Continues: The live-action drama ends on this note as the final episode covers Happy's victory against Excellent Era in the "Revival Tournament", promoting them into the professional league. Their journey as a true eSports team has only begun.
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Variation, while mixed with Truth in Television and Wuxia tropes - as the story revolves around Professional Gaming and its effects on the fanbase, there are naturally quite a lot of examples in the Glory scene, both in and out of the game. In several cases, however, the scenarios involving these types of gamers tend to play out in typical My Kung Fu Is Stronger Than Yours fashion, only with Player Versus Player matches instead of actual martial arts.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Played with in the animation - characters like Ye Xiu, Su Mucheng and Huang Shaotian appear visually pleasing to the eye, while those from Excellent Era (Liu Hao and Cui Li) look less attractive, although Sun Xiang is just as good-looking as the former. Furthermore, members of other professional teams and amateur players alike (be they allies or rivals) look similar to Ye Xiu.
  • Bookends
    • The story begins and ends with Ye Xiu's comeback from retirement and playing as an Unspecializednote .
    • Likewise, Ye Xiu leaving his home to play Glory: the first time was during his teenage years, but his parents disapproved of his decisions. With a hilarious bit of Irony, he's forced by his parents to play for the nation as the leader of the Chinese Glory Team in the world championships.
  • Breaking the Fellowship: In episode 35 of the live action, after suffering a humiliating defeat in the Challenge rounds and blaming each other for why they failed, the team breaks up to return to their old lives, only to find no fulfilment or joy. They soon reunite and apologize to one another.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Downplayed - rich players can still buy high-level characters, equipment and materials from one of the many gold farmers available. However, they will only be able to bully normal players with such a setup. Winning against veterans or pro players require genuine skills.
  • Call-Forward: In the prequel movie's post credits scene, Guo Mingyu tells Ye Xiu that as pro players, there comes a day that they'll have to give up their account, and cuts back into the scene where Ye Xiu gives up One Autumn Leaf to Sun Xiang.
  • Can't Take Anything with You: Players can't bring equipment and items from the "Heavenly Domain" into the lower-level servers; whenever professional players enter the tenth server to challenge Ye Xiu, they create a brand new character to use, but also to avoid people from recognizing who they are.
  • Clark Kenting
    • Discussed; occasionally, pro players will use the same Character Class they are most familiar with when migrating to the tenth server, performing feats only they can do. Certain amateur and guild players quickly catch on to who they are, though one character questions this trope - why would a professional like Su Mucheng from Excellent Era help the "Tyrannical Ambition" guild, while in disguise as "Cleansing Mist", break a dungeon record?
    • Because he's never shown his face in public, Ye Xiu has been able to play for years under his twin brother's identity; turned on its head in the live-action when league officials hold an inquiry during the Challengers League on whether Ye Xiu can continue playing, despite using another person's identity.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Expect plenty of characters, almost all of them Glory players, to curse like it's their second language.
  • Color-Coded Characters: The "main" guilds and competitive teams in the series are each coded to one or two colors. This scheme usually applies to their individual guilds in the tenth server.
    • Excellent Era and "Happy": Red and white
    • "Tyranny": Red and black
    • "Tiny Herb": Green
    • "Blue Rain": Blue and white
    • "Samsara": Yellow
  • Color-Coded Item Tiers: Equipment tiers, from weakest to strongest, are ranked white, green, blue, purple, orange and silver.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: Zigzagged - played straight at the start of the story since "elite" players on the tenth server are still amateurs in Ye Xiu's eyes, but Subverted when Wei Chen proves that even Lord Grim can be beaten by a squad of slightly above average amateurs if it's 20-against-1, their characters are twenty Character Levels higher and have an elite commander in Wei Chen hellbent on doing nothing but research Lord Grim's habits for days. They would've succeeded had Lord Grim not called for backup.
  • Creator Cameo: In the prequel movie, when Ye Xiu's teammates have a discussion on why the former doesn't want to reveal himself in public, they speculated that Ye Xiu comes from renowned family like Butterfly Blue.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Every class has their strengths and weaknesses, and require different play-styles and mindsets to operate effectively. Other than Ye Xiu who can operate all 24 classes freely, most pro players can only specialise in one class or two at most.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Approximately ninety-nine percent of all battles against Lord Grim winds up in Ye Xiu's favor.
  • Death Is Cheap: Subverted; dying outside of the arena in Glory takes away 10% of Experience Points earned with a chance the dead player may drop their equipment, making this painful to anybody racing to level through a server to get to the real game-play battleground, the Heavenly Domain. Furthermore, a player's corpse stays on the field for a few seconds, giving random players the opportunity to loot it. If death occurs in the Heavenly Domain, experience lost goes up to 20% with a greater chance of dropping equipment upon death. Taken to its logical conclusion when multiple guilds come after Lord Grim - Ye Xiu has to be extra careful, lest he risk dying and losing the avatar's only weapon, the "Myriad Manifestation Umbrella", as it's the reason why Xiu is even playing as an Unspecialized-class.
  • Deep-Immersion Gaming: Zigzagged - audiences do get to see players hammering away at keyboards and clicking on the mouse, while seeing the heads-up display for Glory on occasion, in the animation and live-action. Meanwhile, Glory avatars take on the facial appearance of their respective user with almost no difference (aside from hair color and style).
  • Easily Forgiven: Zigzagged in the live action regarding Wu Chen, who joined Team Happy rather than as a guild leader in the novel. When Team Happy found out Wu Chen was cheating during the Challenge round against them, almost everyone except for Ye Xiu and Chen Guo distrust him, though they do warm up to him later. When it looked as if Wu Chen was selling them out for an opposing team, everyone's mistrust of him came back full force, until he was able to clear the matter. Eventually, he is fully accepted into the team.
  • Enemy Mine: Club guilds can set aside any dispute with each other whenever Lord Grim shows up. On the other hand, some of the same guilds will cooperate with Lord Grim if it's to their benefit.
  • Evolving Weapon: Silver-tier equipment can be upgraded in stages by adding in uncommon materials. This allows the equipment to never become outdated and grow stronger alongside the character.
  • Fatal Flaw:
    • Tang Rou's Blood Knight and Competition Freak tendencies work against her more often than not. She can have a selfish desire to solo everything rather than work with others.
    • Sun Xiang's Pride prevents him from working effectively along with his teammates, causing trouble for Excellent Era to rise back to the top despite his talent. He also has issues with wanting to succeed Ye Xiu's legacy, making him feel obligated to defeat Ye Xiu to prove he can surpass Ye Xiu.
  • Friendly Enemy: Fans of big-name teams may hate each other, but pro players are mostly on good terms with one another. There's even a dedicated group chat for professional players.
  • Funny Background Event: In the live action drama, in the flashback where Ye Xiu meets Qiu Fei for the first time, Qiu Fei mistakes Ye Xiu as a waiter and brags that he would become captain of Excellent Era by next year. Ye Xiu can be seen smirking at the side, as Qiu Fei didn't realize he was speaking to the captain himself.
  • The Generation Gap: The "Glory Professional Alliance" league is divided into two generations - the oldest players will mostly stay loyal to the same club for their careers, but younger talent have a more mercenary-based mindset and are willing to play for rival clubs for higher pay or prestige at every opportunity.
  • Giant Spider: "The Lord of Spiders" hidden boss seen in the Animated Adaptation and live-action drama.
  • Go-Karting with Bowser
    • Many pro players from different teams are in an online group chat where they can amicably mingle and discuss despite their team rivalry.
    • Ye Xiu is close enough to Huang Shaotian that the former is able to call upon the latter to help him with a dungeon record.
  • Golden Age: In-Universe, from Season 3 onwards, sponsors starting pouring in and the league got really rich.
  • Groupie Brigade: Club guilds double as giant fan clubs for their professional teams, and tend to have a disproportionate amount of certain Character Classes depending on who the team's ace players are.
  • Growing Up Sucks: The youngest professional players are teenagers - they have to sacrifice their studies, possibly move away from home and work their hardest while facing the fear of being not good enough and becoming unwanted free agents at the end of their contracts.
  • Guide Dang It!
    • Thanks to Glory's longevity, all Character Classes and dungeons have one, detailing all aspects to its minute details. Hilariously played with when upon starting the tenth server, Ye Xiu reads through the beginner's guide at Chen Guo's bewilderment, justifying how it's been years since he's played from the bottom.
    • Ye Xiu weaponizes this, with analytics provided by Luo Ji, by creating the "Idiot's Guides" for breaking dungeon records, selling them to the biggest guilds in exchange for materials. Wei Chen also creates a guide to maximize the amount of skill points, after being perfected, selling it to a wealthy club for a whopping 20 million renmenbi (roughly 3 million USD).
  • Gun Kata: The Sharpshooter Character Class has a close-quarters combat technique called "Gun Fu" against melee-based combatants so as to not let them be rendered helpless. Most professional players require at least four to six steps, but some of the league's best (Ye Xiu and Zhou Zekai) can do it in as close to three.
  • Honor Before Reason: When a Flame War escalates into an all-out war, the large guilds participate for the sake of defending the honor of their professional clubs and fans. In the aftermath, most participants died at least once, losing their hard-earned equipment and Experience Points and gained nothing.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: Happens frequently when guilds try to join forces to hunt down Lord Grim and his party to prevent them from either breaking dungeon records or leveling up. Unfortunately, Lord Grim and his allies are more powerful and smarter; they wind up hunting and killing them instead.
  • Hypocrite: The guilds hate Lord Grim for monopolizing dungeon records and first boss kills, except they've been pulling this schtick long before Lord Grim appeared.
  • Improbable Use of a Weapon: Justified as Glory's video game mechanics allows players to exploit such tactics.
    • Implausible Fencing Powers: Top players like Ye Xiu and Huang Shaotian are capable of doing this by fully exploiting the major Swordsman-class.
    • Blade Run: In the novels, Ye Xiu pulls this against a Wild Boss after it Turns Red, leaving Bao Rongxing and Tang Rou awestruck that it's even capable. In the Prequel, Ye Xiu also does this against Peaceful Hermit's "Death Savvy".
    • Paper Master: Exorcist class fully utilizes its abilities via talismans, some of which can have a scythe thrown and home in to its target.
    • Recoil Boost: Gunner-class techniques, such as "Aerial Fire" and "Delivery Gun" from a Launcher-class, both pioneered by Ye Xiu, is frequently used by giving characters altitude in a matter of a seconds. Emphasized with Su Mucheng in Episode 2 of SP during the fan vs. professional event, when she uses her Launcher's BFG to get a head start in the race to the arena's top.
    • Throwing Your Gun at the Enemy: Played with - in the earlier chapters, when playing as Chen Guo's "Chasing Haze", Ye Xiu wins against a Heavenly Domain expert by throwing away the avatar's BFG to reduce weight, while increasing mobility.
    • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Ye Xiu is daring enough to throw a weapon as important as Lord Grim's Myriad Manifestation Umbrella during Season 10's Game 2 playoff finals match in the Team Competition against Samsara.
  • Inferiority Superiority Complex:
    • While Sun Xiang is a great player, much of his boosting after he joins Excellent Era is due to the fact he knows he cannot live up to the hype as Ye Xiu's successor.
    • In the live action, Wei Chen likes to brag and claim he would lead the team to victory to cover for the fact his Glory skills have declined due to his age.
    • Similarly, Qiu Fei presents himself as knowledgeable and skilled in Glory but in reality is fearful of being seen as a loser as his father sees him as.
  • Innocent Cohabitation: Ye Xiu, Chen Guo and Tang Rou reside in the living quarters on the second floor of Guo's Internet cafe with three bedrooms (Ye Xiu's is actually a storage room) connected by a living room. There's no romantic undertones between them.
  • Jerk Ass Has A Point: In the live action, An Wenyi comes off as more condescending and rude but he does bring up good points.
    • During a training match of Team Happy against Ye Xiu, he tells Yifan he is too inflexible when it comes to adapting and giving orders to changing situations.
    • When preparing for the tutor match against Tiny Herb in the Challenge round, Yifan continues to stick to conventional methods of dealing with his ex-captain and insists on protecting An Wenyi. An Wenyi points out that Wang Jiexi is aware that Team Happy is full of new Glory players. Therefore, he won't be targeting the cleric but going after Ye Xiu who is the most experienced and if the captain was killed off, the rest of them will be easily defeated.
  • King Incognito
    • Because he had to give up his old account, no one on Glory's tenth server knows Lord Grim is being used by the famous Ye Xiu, but Subverted when the savviest professional players and guilds quickly deduce his identity. Inevitably, when other pros migrate to the tenth server to challenge Ye Xiu, they also have to pull this (see Can't Take Anything with You).
    • When Su Mucheng and Huang Shaotian go to see Ye Xiu at the Internet cafe, they have to carefully disguise themselves as regular patrons; Huang Shaotian Lampshades how everybody knows what he looks like, whereas only a few professional players have ever seen Ye Xiu due to his reclusiveness.
  • Last Episode Theme Reprise: The finale of season one of the Animated Adaptation reuses the opening theme of the show.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler
    • The events of the first few sagas resulting in the creation of Team Happy is well known by web novel readers; Justified as it's hard to talk about the latter half of the series without bringing it up.
    • Su Muqiu's existence and his impact on the plot is common knowledge due to this character's reception and status. Interestingly, Ye Xiu's twin brother Ye Qiu is less talked about, making the latter more of a surprise when the story gives way for the character to appear, as Ye Xiu essentially committed identity theft against his own brother to play professionally.
  • Legacy Character: Invoked - since players grow old while their characters don't, professional accounts like One Autumn Leaf, Desert Dust, Vaccaria, Troubling Rain, Cloud Piercer etc. all have players from their respective teams inheriting them and/or trained to eventually use them.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: In-Universe, from the audience and professional players' perspective in the All-Star Competition, during the fan vs. professional segment, a random player takes the place of the next challenger, cracking jokes and arguing with the previous challenger to give them their account to use, seemingly lambasting them for incompetence. Of course, the random person is Ye Xiu and he quickly proceeds to dominate the entire fight.
  • Level Grinding: Justified for any player starting a new account, be it Ye Xiu with Lord Grim or his professional peers who have entered the tenth server.
  • Loophole Abuse: Retired pro players cannot return to the professional scene for one year. However, there are no rules regarding retired players participating in the relegation-based "Challengers League". Excellent Era, when trying to smear Ye Xiu's reputation when they know he is playing for Team Happy, find this out the hard way.
  • Loot Drama: Happens a lot In-Universe, especially in the Heavenly Domain, where certain boss drops can't even be bought with money because of how rare they are.
  • Manchild: Pro players may be god-like existences to average players, but they can trash talk, curse and bicker like children whenever they fight each other. In an attempt to preserve their image, the league banned cussing in official matches.
  • Marathon Boss: In Glory, "Wild Bosses" appear only once a week, but if defeated, have a chance to drop exclusive materials. Fights against them can last long because of their high Hit Points, as well as guilds battling each other over who gets to kill the boss and claim the rewards due to their rare appearance.
  • Master of All: The literal title of the novel is "All Class Expert", a title which is given to Ye Xiu as the Glory Textbook
  • Meaningful Background Event: In Episode 2 of the animation, as the newscaster is commemorating Ye Qiu's illustrious career, Ye Xiu starts to walk off-screen. Just as he does, the One Autumn Leaf avatar turns around to look at the camera over its shoulder, as if it's watching its former user leave.
  • Meaningful Name: Expect plenty of avatar names in Glory from guilds backed by gaming clubs to have handles that matches the theme of their guild. Those not associated with guilds, however, are usually taken from lines of Chinese idioms or poetry (One Autumn Leaf, Lord Grim or Cleansing Mist). Of course, there are also completely random names that are nonsensical, such as "Steamed Bun Invasion".
  • Medium Blending: The Animated Adaptation utilizes CG and traditional hand-drawn 2D animation - the former mostly for unfocused/far-away shots and some backgrounds, the latter for close-up camera angles.
  • Money Sink: Justified In-Universe - to craft the best silver equipment, the highest tier of equipment category rankings, players must pump lots of rare materials potentially worth millions of renmenbi note .
  • Mook Horror Show: Many veteran players on the tenth server are absolutely shocked and terrified as Lord Grim and his party effortlessly kill several of them when the guilds try to get rid of Lord Grim.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Played for drama. In the live action, Wei Chen sees newly joined Wu Chen privately speaking with the opposing team about a "deal" and comes to the conclusion that Wu Chen was selling Team Happy out. This distrust causes Wei Chen, as the substitute captain after Ye Xiu was pulled away for investigation, to not include Wu Chen in the team event and it would result in the team losing. It's later revealed that Wu Chen was actually trying to arrange for more silver equipment for Team Happy.
  • Old Hero, New Pals: The main story starts with Ye Xiu being kicked out of Excellent Era and meeting his new team members along the way.
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: At the professional level, the most powerful characters are so finely tuned to their original user with their own personal quirks and play-styles that their effectiveness can be greatly reduced just from a change in operators.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Whenever an expert is described as weak in the novel, it is only in comparison to pro players. The expert can still wipe the floor against an amateur.
  • Panthera Awesome: What the "Midnight Phantom Cat" boss appears as in the Animated Adaptation and live-action.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Whenever a professional player logs into the game with an alt account, their outstanding in-game skill will easily give them away almost immediately.
  • Power Equals Rarity: Enforced; the most powerful materials come from the most powerful bosses, namely Wild Bosses that spawn once a week, as opposed to dungeon bosses that appear for each player multiple times a week. As such, materials used to craft the best silver-tiered equipment are the most finite. Similarly, silver-tiered equipment itself is made from dozens of these drops, meaning it's even rarer than any standard equipment dropped in-game.
  • Pride Before a Fall: In the live action, majority of Team Happy start to slack off once they start winning consecutive matches. Ye Xiu was not pleased to find out many went out for drinking and lied to him when they were supposed to be practicing that night. Tang Rou even claims to the reporters she will win her next 1 vs. 3 event or she will retire. Come next match, Team Happy suffered a humiliating loss.
  • Product Placement: A McDonald's store front features prominently in the opening and ending credits sequences of the Animated Adaptation, with patrons and staff at the Internet cafe occasionally eating fast food from one nearby. Hell, one professional player even becomes the spokesperson for their new ice cream cones.
  • Rapid-Fire Typing: Unlike other Character Classes with hotkeys attached directly to skills, the hotkeys for the Ninja-class are attached to ninja seals, which need to be typed out in the correct combination for ninja skills to work.
  • Real-Place Background: Some of the locations such as Excellent Era's corporate headquarters and the McDonald's adjacent to their building in the Animated Adaptation are based on Real Life locations in the city of Hangzhou, China.
  • Right in Front of Me: In the live action, during a flashback, newcomer Qiu Fei meets Ye Xiu and believes he is a waiter at the Excellent Era building. Qiu Fei starts bragging about his skills and knowledge of Glory and how he would be team captain soon and telling Ye Xiu he could be his apprentice, not realizing that he was talking to the captain of Excellent Era and the Battle God of Glory himself.
  • Right Behind Me: A variation occurs when Ye Xiu is chatting with Huang Shaotian online and he begins to casually insult Yu Wenzhou and Huang Shaotian hastily tells him that Yu Wenzhou is standing right behind him. Ye Xiu continues to cheerfully trash talk about Yu Wenzhou.
  • Robbing the Dead: When characters die and have to wait to respawn, their equipment can be looted from their corpses, with many players only choosing to enter chaotic battles simply to steal potentially good equipment. These types of players are known in-game as "scrap pickers" and are generally looked down upon by others.
  • Rule of Symbolism
    • Excellent Era's logo of a leaf with a spear and three stars symbolizes Ye Xiu's three-consecutive championship reign; the spear is One Autumn Leaf's Weapon of Choice.
    • Happy's logo of a phoenix represents Ye Xiu's return to the professional scene.
  • Scarf of Asskicking: Within the game, avatars such as Lord Grim has a flowing red one, while Qiao Yifan's Assassin-class character "Ashen Moon" wears a purple scarf. Outside of Glory, players such as Huang Shaotian and Wang Jiexi will wear one indoors; Justified due to the oncoming winter season.
  • Secret Ingredient: Due to the difficulty in crafting silver-level equipment, many pro clubs do not reveal the materials behind their silver equipment.
  • Self-Deprecation: The author makes fun of himself at one point regarding Steamed Bun Invasion having been forgotten about during Ye Xiu's foray into the Heavenly Domain.
    Chen Guo: “Isn’t it more like the author forgot?”
    Ye Xiu: “Most likely. That useless trash. I hate him!
  • Serious Business: With more than 130 million players, Glory boasts such a large player base they launched a professional league eight years before the start of the story; since then, with additional sponsorships from major corporations like McDonald's, the Alliance has essentially become the eSports equivalent to the English Premier League with its own promotion/relegation system.
  • Shout-Out: Being a work that examines the eSports aspect of the Massively Multiplayer Online genre, there's quite a few nods to pre-existing games.
    • Glory's Character Classes, along with associated skills, are an Expy of Dungeon Fighter Online, and are more or less portrayed accurately.
      • As an Unspecialized-class, Ye Xiu's Lord Grim has access to all default class skills and spells. A female Mage's "Summon Hodor" and "Dragon Fang" from Dungeon Fighter Online are used at several points in the animation, as are the Gunner's "Gatling Gun" and Aerial Fire. Furthermore, Ye Xiu's previous Battle Mage-class One Autumn Leaf resembles the Demonic Lancer's default skin, especially in the Manhua. Finally, Lord Grim, being an Unspecialized character, is ineligible for the "Level 50 Class Awakening", preventing it from becoming stronger. This is a reference to "Awakenings" in Dungeon Fighter Online granting characters brand new skills and super moves that are the culminations of specific class specialties.
      • In the web novel, the Witch-class character "Lunar Grace" uses "Doll Shururu" to taunt and herd enemy mobs into one spot during the "Frozen Forest" Dungeon speed-run, with "Shadow Cloak" later used to prevent these mobs from dispersing after the initial Area of Effect barrage. The latter skill is effectively "Black Manteau" from Dungeon Fighter Online.
      • Xu Boyuan's Blade Master-class character carries a plain longsword in the animation, but the Manhua renders it as a Laser Blade, the same weapon type unique to the Blade Master, Dark Knight and Swordmaster classes in Dungeon Fighter Online.
      • Bao Rongxing's Steamed Bun Invasion is literally a male Brawler from Dungeon Fighter Online, right down to using claws as his melee weapon and having "Sand Splash" and "Block Throw" (renamed as "Brick Buster" in the web novel) as combat skills.
      • Su Mucheng's Cleansing Mist and "Dancing Rain" avatars are no different from a female Launcher in Dungeon Fighter Online, complete with BFG.
      • Zhou Zekai, one of the five strongest PvP combatants in Glory, uses the Ranger class from Dungeon Fighter Onlinenote , often touted by the community to be the best in PvP due to their natural ranged skills.
      • Han Wenqing's "Desert Dust" is a male Striker; his professional team's name is "Tyranny". In Dungeon Fighter Online, a male Striker's Second Awakening (at least in the global version of the game), is known as "The Tyrant".
    • Outside of Dungeon Fighter Online, the "Unspecialized" character build having access to most classes' basic skills is a reference to the Super Novice class from Ragnarok Online.
    • Counter-Strike is referenced when describing what playing a Gunner-class without using any of its class skills feels like.
    • The "Group Challenge" event held during the league's championship playoff matches is described in the web novel as having an elimination format similar to "KOF"; the difference is Group Challenge has five members rather than the latter's three.
    • At one point in the web novel, Chen Guo laments she does not have the "Sharingan" to copy Ye Xiu's skills.
    • During Huang Shaotian's friendly match against Ye Xiu in the Heavenly Domain, spectators start referring to the former as "Leo, Knight of the Zodiac".
    • As a response to Chen Guo bringing up Han Wenqing's attempt at changing up his play-style and how it wasn't enough to secure Tyranny a victory during the Season 8 playoffs, Ye Xiu sarcastically asks her if she was expecting Wenqing to go "Super Saiyan".
    • Glory's game concepts and design are loosely borrowed from Log Horizon, such as how the in-game economy works, the public's reactions towards professional players and the guilds' interactions with one another.
    • Li Xuan's account "Crying Devil" is a reference to Devil May Cry.
    • The Brawler account "Demon Subduer" (originally translated as "Three Hits") references Journey to the West, specifically the three battles against the white bone spirit.
  • Super Mode: A Battle Mage character has a "Class Awakening Skill" called "Battle Spirit" which requires a certain amount of Combos to activate that grants various Status Buffs, upwards to seven tiers. Achieving Battle Spirit's highest can only be done by a handful of Battle Mage players in the league.
    • Ye Xiu activates the highest level by performing a 120-hit Combo to defeat Lu Liang and Royal Style in the Prequel novel during the Season 1 grand finals, earning him the moniker Battle God.
    • Tang Rou achieves the same thing during a Christmas event after being rewarded by a skill book unlocking Battle Spirit for her avatar "Soft Mist".
    • Sun Xiang does it twice: the first during Excellent Era's hunt against Ye Xiu (assisted by the character "Deception" and the "Heavenly Justice" guild) in the Heavenly Domain, reaching the sixth tier, but is out-played by Xiu's superior tactics; the second is in the Season 10 playoff finals tiebreaker match against Happy, where Xiang reaches the eighth stage, the highest tier in the current Battle Mage's meta, at a whopping 150-hit Combo. Unfortunately, Ye Xiu still defeats him due to Xiang's lack of experience in playing the class itself.
  • Shown Their Work: Common MMO lingo such as "smurf"note , "APM"note , "aggro"note , among others, are correctly used in the right situations.
  • Small Girl, Big Gun: Female Launchers' primary weapon is the hand cannon, often evoking this trope.
  • Spider Swarm: "The Cave of Spiders" Dungeon is infamous for this, given its hidden boss is aptly called The Lord of Spiders.
  • Suicide Attack: The ultimate attack for the Assassin-class, "Life Risking Strike" deals lethal damage at the cost of the Assassin's life.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial
    • After several professional players are discovered in the Heavenly Domain observing and commenting on a friendly match between Ye Xiu and Huang Shaotian, the media speculates Lord Grim is Ye Xiu. When asked, however, nearly all pros deny it, despite at that point in the story most of them know, with 100% certainty, who Lord Grim is.
      Wang Jiexi: "Playing an Unspecialized requires knowledge and proficiency with every class. From what I saw from Lord Grim’s performance, Ye Qiu is without a doubt the number one suspect."
      Zhou Zekai: "Hmm, probably Ye Qiu…… because…… he’s very strong……"
    • Earlier in the story, Yu Wenzhou deduces Huang Shaotian is "Flowing Sword", who helped Lord Grim beat the Boneyard Dungeon record; Huang Shaotian tries to deny it, but to no avail.
  • Take That!: In the prequel movie, during Ye Xiu's Dare to Be Badass speech to to inspire Excellent Era's members, Ye Xiu admits he took inspiration from speeches of anime captains, where the latter retort that it doesn't really fit Ye Xiu's image.
  • That One Level: In-Universe, underwater stages - most players are plain bad at them.
  • Title Drop: In Chapter 1343.
    "Wasn't their Ye Xiu an even more ridiculous all-class expert, a king's avatar?"
    • In the live-action drama's fifteenth episode, Tao Xuan notes that Ye Xiu and Su Muqiu are making a weapon for the Unspecialized-class. Ye Xiu says that with it, he can be a proper Unspecialized, only to retract his statement.
      Ye Xiu: "No, that should be called a King's Avatar!"
  • Trash Talk: A valid strategy in battle, where part of being a professional player is learning to ignore it. Huang Shaotian was a particularly bad case in the earlier seasons - after months of pro players complaining about his non-stop chattering, voice chat during official matches had to be disabled. Ye Xiu, on the other hand, is extremely good at riling up people with only few choice words, both inside and outside of the game.
  • Truth in Television
    • No matter how good a professional player is, if they don't come up with adequate rankings and results for their corporate sponsored team, chances are they will be replaced with younger talent by the team executives. Furthermore, it's not unusual for pros to retire in their mid- or late-20s (without being forced to) when they're no longer in their prime.
    • It's common to see players under contract who wish to leave their team being told they must pay an exorbitant amount of termination fees: this is to deter players from acquiring better benefits from joining a rival organization, which isn't unheard of.
    • Professional teams having access to lavish training facilities and dining areas, while living at in-house residences paid for by their sponsors is common, given the professional scene in Asia is largely backed by major corporations.
    • As per Bribing Your Way to Victory states, equipment/gold/item/material farmers in MMORPGs are the norm, especially in a country where there's a sizeable player base.
    • Young adolescents who are unable to pursue their dreams at becoming professional in Glory are left destitute with little working skills, due to many of them dropping out of school or leaving home. Ye Xiu points out this is why he became an Internet cafe manager: he didn't have any other skills other than gaming.
  • Warrior Heaven: The Heavenly Domain is this for Glory players with its exclusive loot and large maps, but also because of its incredibly strict parametersnote . Any time a character makes it to the Domain, there is a server-wide announcement.
  • Was It Really Worth It?: After the first leg of the Season 8 finals, a Flame War escalates into an all-out guild war, lasting all night. The next morning, after losing their hard-earned equipment and experience points, most participants feel nothing, but regret.
  • With Us or Against Us: This philosophy is applied to Lord Grim, to the point where guilds fight over him so they won't have to consider him a threat.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: In the live action, Ye Xiu calls out Team Happy for slacking off during a practice night and lying to him about it. He was also displeased to find out they were drinking alcohol when professional players are banned from drinking during the season.
  • Why We Can't Have Nice Things: In the early days of Glory's professional league, pros were closer with their in-game fans and would often log in to play with them in Player Versus Environment and PvP until some players started spamming, stalking, even ambushing them to steal their priceless equipment. Presently, pro characters rarely appear in-game, if at all.
  • Worthy Opponent
    • Despite the trash-talking and overall fierce competitiveness of the professional teams, Ye Xiu respects certain pro players, such as Huang Shaotian, Wang Jiexi, Han Wenqing and Yu Wenzhou.
    • Likewise, professional teams have nothing but admiration and respect (if not, a healthy dose of fear) of Ye Xiu because of his Living Legend status.

Alternative Title(s): Quan Zhi Gao Shou, The Kings Avatar