Part 18: The box has done what it canThe box has done what it can
AKA it's time to upgrade our lifestyle.
It didn't take long at all to get to 25 with our Attack and Defense skills. But we aren't stopping there, we're going as far as this lifestyle can take us.
This is how a real man deals with Tapeworm IC.
The money is piling up as we learn how to make our own hardware and software. Sadly, it still doesn't compare to what we can buy or steal. Hell, what we can buy doesn't compare to what we can steal.
I'm not sure if it's based off of skill ranks or skill points, but this is where there was a marked drop off in how many skill points we get at each difficulty level. Still, we're getting some (even if only on the 70+% servers) so we grind on!
And about here is where the 70% servers stop paying out. This means we only get skill points for contracts on the max rating servers (14) and then only if they have a qualifier. And since we suck so bad at N and T qualifiers, I start going a long time between contracts.
Along the way we meet our first piece of true Black IC. When this guy hits you (as in damaging your icon health, not just a Shield), you take brain damage as well, lowering your physical health. Medic programs can heal your icon but not your meatbod, so if you aren't paying attention you could die.
This is where we're at, skill-wise, when the grind comes to an end. The contracts are just too rare to farm. But hey, we can actually upgrade some chips and a program or two in our deck now!
Our Coprocessor, Stealth, and Analysis get bumped to 12, and we gave our Silence program a major upgrade from 7 to 13. Speaking of which, Silence 13 needs a goon name!
Shrapnel 3.0 is starting to lose its effectiveness; there are enough hardened IC that it's taking too long to clear a room. I'm either going to have to ditch a lot of programs to make room for multiple attack programs, or get some serious upgrades to my CPU and Coprocessor ASAP.