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Xindaris
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hi

i made new hold. test pleas?





Okay okay, I'll get out of character for requesting testing help and stuff. This is a simple one-level, 16-room hold based on an impulse to make something very simple and some suggestions in chat to include roaches and powder kegs in the puzzle. It was inspired partially by my experience playing such classics as 1 level EZ hold and 3lv, and partially by some really extreme frustration with trying to script some complex stuff.

This hold is about using several near-copies of the same room to require the player to use the same elements in various different ways, or to deal with/make use of the presence of a new element in some cases; sometimes both. The language in-hold is intentionally lower case with poor spelling and grammar to reflect the sense of simplicity, so as long as you can understand what the "architect" is trying to say in each case and things are functional, that stuff is intentional.

Just wanting some general feedback and any "hey I think this might be broken" you can give, please :)

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-20-2017 07:30 PM]
02-27-2017 at 01:30 AM
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uncopy2002
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Going through...

Comments (will add new ones as I go through):
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[Last edited by uncopy2002 at 02-27-2017 07:24 AM]
02-27-2017 at 07:15 AM
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Insoluble
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
Neat! This is super fun so far. Only tried out a few rooms and will probably want to try this out further before I post comments. I actually really enjoy the writing style here. Made me laugh once or twice.

Quick note, 1N1E looked really annoying so I broke it. Probably a lot of the rooms can be broken this way. You could fix this with tunnels in the gate passageways (Though that won't fix the fact that 1N1E probably relies on annoying chain straightening stuff.)

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02-28-2017 at 07:17 AM
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Xindaris
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1N1E is actually really easy and involves absolutely no chain straightening shenanigans if done normally. Most rooms can't be broken the way you did that one because there are just too many roaches, they kill Beethro if he tries to push a keg out. But I think I will add tunnels to the one or two rooms where there's not already something preventing the player from doing that.

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 02-28-2017 03:31 PM]
02-28-2017 at 03:26 PM
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Insoluble
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
Cool. It looks like all the rooms that might have yielded to the same technique have tunnels now, so looks good. You asked in chat about the two time clone rooms (since time clone rooms tend to break easily). I did some stuff that may be unintended, but nothing that I would consider a break honestly.

In 2E I think I was maybe supposed to get roaches on the plates, but I did it in an overly convoluted way with kegs. While possibly unintended, this is longer than a solution with roaches would have been and I probably had more fun doing it this way, so I don't know.

In 1S2E I can't tell if what I'm doing is intended or not. Seems like a nice linchpin if it is intended. It's probably possible to do without putting a time clone on a plate, but I didn't bother trying.

Demos are attached. As a bonus you can see the demos for all the other rooms I've done so far. Only real break I found was 2S1E. I'll try to write up comments once I've finished the last few up. I'd also like to emphasize that I'm really enjoying this. I think this is possibly my favorite hold of yours yet!

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03-02-2017 at 07:47 AM
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Xindaris
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I'm glad you liked it so far :D

2S1E: Pretty broken, yes. I'm making a fix with a similar widget to the fuse+kegs on doors in the mimic room, except in this case there's no mimic to futz it with. I guess it's still possible to do something unintended here and still not get Beethro trapped, but that's probably harder than the intended solution.

Even if I wanted to fix 2E I honestly have no idea what else I can do to try and prevent the mimic from going inside and breaking it. At least I made it sorta convoluted to do so. The intended solution uses the kegs for something completely different and never puts the mimic in the hallway, but my demo of it takes more turns than yours does; that may just be because I was inefficient about pushing the kegs into position though. I think I'll prefer to leave your one in anyway under the philosophy that having a few different-looking solutions is fine as long as none of them are just ridiculously trivial and obvious.

In 1S2E you've managed a solution basically identical to that of 2S2E, which I guess is fine. The idea is just that the timeclone's supposed to maybe distract some roaches so the disarmed present beethro can arrange things properly to get everybody on the plates, and this basically falls under that.

Your solution to 2S1W is much more efficient than mine by being clever enough to keep a roach at exactly the right distance; the way I have to solve it is by flooding the area behind me and then putting unbrained roaches on the plates all over again to get everybody back out of the hallway. I consider the cleverer option valid, though.

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-02-2017 11:01 PM]
03-02-2017 at 10:49 PM
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
Okay, finished. Demos are attached. As I mentioned before I thought this was a ton of fun. the concept is great and some of the puzzles are outstanding. I really like thematic levels like this because the main puzzle widgets are the same from room to room so I don't have to spend much time at all parsing things. I also like how similar widgets get used for completely different things in different rooms. I won't comment on every room, just ones that were particularly enjoyable or possibly broken.

On a more subjective note, I'm not usually a fan of green gates blocking off level progression. I guess it's not a big deal, but I found a lot of the green gates to be unnecessary. I can see putting them in the entrance since it's the most basic variant of the theme and probably okay to force people to solve that one first to set the tone. In general, the outer rooms are slightly more difficult than the inner ones, but not to the extend that I felt like I wanted to solve them in any particular order. It's not really a big deal though, and it's mostly a personal preference.

I really liked 1N1W. The solution was pretty time consuming, but I guess you did everything you could to mitigate the tedium of keg pushing. I kinda wish I had a spear or other pushing weapon here, but that would probably telegraph the solution too much. I do like that the solution is tight and forces me to be efficient with keg placement.

1N was the room that took me the longest to figure out. It's such a simple minimalist room and yet it seemed completely impossible for a while. Really nice.

Something doesn't quite feel right about my solution to 1N2E. I really feel like I should have been using roaches for some of the plates (since there are just enough to place on the originally open ones). When I tried that though I had the issue of the door at (10,28) not reopening when I expected it to, but then I noticed the green door right there. I also noticed that the orthosquare at (9,28) literally does nothing since diagonal moves onto or off of that square are blocked by walls anyway. You maybe wanted to place that a square to the right.

1S1W was another room I enjoyed quite a bit. I do find myself wishing that the two plates that are the odd ones out had something to signify that up front. Like special lighting or something like that. Again, not really a huge deal.

I found an absolutely hilarious and convoluted way to break 1S1E. I'm sure the intended solution is way shorter, so I doubt there's a need to try to prevent this. I mostly wanted to just see if it could work.

I also found 2S2E to be quite different from the time clone variant since I couldn't put a decoy on the plate and had to make sure it was out of the smell range of any of the roaches at the end. It was a neat room.

Other rooms were fun too, and if you'd like I can provide more specific feedback about all the rooms.

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03-03-2017 at 05:14 AM
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Xindaris
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Thanks again! :)

Alright, yeah, 1N2E was a case of me not being able to see past the intended solution to a really obvious break. It should be necessary to play it in some approximation of the intended way now. The orthosquare was indeed misplaced; the whole point of that+hot tile is just so a fluff can't get inside the "hallway" and kill the brain for you.

I watched your demo for 1S1E and for a moment wasn't sure if DROD had bugged out and was just showing the same several turns in a row, which is pretty hilarious.

As for the green doors...the player can choose what order they actually solve every room after the second one in, but they encounter them in a thematic order. Like, the "a helper is here" rooms are all close to each other, the two "toggle a thing to get into a secondary hallway" rooms are close to each other, so on. I conceptualize it as actually having several hallways going off in different directions each going along a certain theme, except you can unlock shortcuts by beating one room in each of a pair of hallways in certain configurations? But it makes more sense to have the level actually be shaped as a square rather than straightening out the hallways, and that makes it easier to set up the shortcuts as well.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that past the first two rooms, the green doors don't really block level progression, they just try to encourage the player to try the rooms in something resembling a certain order. The funky way room borders are handled in this hold makes it possible for a player to see a room a while before they're really supposed to encounter it by clearing the room that's got a "shortcut" to it, and I don't really know how to fix it without drastically changing the style of things in that respect.



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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-03-2017 05:42 PM]
03-03-2017 at 05:39 PM
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Hah, I love the aesthetic here. This is pretty clever. Looks like I'm halfway done... Notes on the rooms in the order I played them:

The Entrance
Nice and straightforward. Sets up the theme for the rest pretty well.

1W
I may have broken this slightly... I lit the eastern fuse, and was able to get enough roaches out to put one on every butn without needing to move any kegs or the mirror. I even had a roach to spare. Totally fine if it was intended to be lenient, but I feel like the mirror was supposed to be required?

1S1W
This took me a little bit to work out. I ended up using the mirror to put out a fuse, then rescuing a powder keg to place on one of the plates that the brain doesn't reopen. Also, I understand "be saf", but the rest of the scroll is completely indecipherable to me... "lk the drs" feels like it's telling me to check pressure plate wiring (look the directions?), but "prush shif" just seems like complete gibberish.

2S1W
I tried a few different things here... Keeping a single roach the appropriate distance away to stand on the plate seemed possible, but fiddly. I tried getting a huge horde behind me, but roaches kept getting trapped between the brain doors in inaccessible spots. What ended up working was to trim down the roach horde to a reasonable number (4 or 5 or so) to bring in behind me. Cool stuff.

2S
Hah, I love the usage of the guard! I happened to put him in the right cage by complete accident on my first try. Didn't understand what the force arrow was for until I killed the evil eye, but then the guard stabbed the roach and it all made sense. :-)

1S
Whoa, this was tricky. I understood the evil eye widget right away and had no trouble getting roaches caged and an extra one into the western hallway, but then it took a fair bit of fiddling around to work out how to get that roach back out. I ended up placing the mirror at (23,5) to make it possible to lure all roaches south of the evil eye enclosure when I stepped onto (35,3), then was able to dodge around them to kill the evil eyes, put them back in their cages again, and trade the roach in the western hallway for the mirror to do final cleanup. Not sure if that was the intended method, but it was quite enjoyable either way!

1N1W
...oh. Now the scroll in 1S1W makes sense. Heh. This was cool! I had just one keg to spare when I had the whole thing set up.

1N
Looks like this works under a similar principle as 1N1W. Just had to move one keg out of the way, and the rest was pretty simple.
03-04-2017 at 09:00 PM
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Xindaris
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Thank you for taking a look!

I'm not particularly worried about any breaky-feeling solutions to 1W since it's supposed to be one of the two "very easy intro" rooms. I'm happy to let skilled players show off in those two.

I just wanted to leave a friendly reminder about room locking because of how open these rooms are and how long it can take to redo a room you were halfway through. I was hoping I could strike a balance of having poor spelling/grammar while still being parseable, but I guess it's fine as long as you understood at least one of them.

Insoluble managed to space a roach just so in 2S1W; my solution involves flooding the whole area behind Beethro and then carefully replacing the roaches that leave their buttons to let a remaining 5 back out. I'm happy with basically anything in between.

I can't be sure without a demo, but your solution to 2S sounds more difficult than the intended one. Maybe even a good candidate for another chall egg.

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-04-2017 10:49 PM]
03-04-2017 at 10:42 PM
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ThemsAllTook
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
What I did in 2S was actually pretty simple. Demos for everything I've solved so far attached. Picking up where I left off...

2S1E: Whew. Getting a soldier to behave himself is quite a task. With some fiddling around, I managed to convince him to step on the northeast pressure plate so he'd clean up the room for me. I had to place a roach on a specific side of his cage to make sure he stepped off immediately so that the fuse could go through. Neat puzzle.

2S2E: Did the challenge. I tried several ways to game the system and place a decoy on a disarm token so I could get my sword back, but it looks like that's adequately guarded against. I found a convenient spot in the northwest where I could put a decoy and attract a bunch of roaches, then peel off one at a time to put into a cage.

1S2E: Hah, time clone as a decoy! Clever! Really interesting to see how different this feels compared to 2S2E, since his attraction range is relative rather than absolute. I got him in a cage, stuck 5 roaches on him, peeled them off one by one to put in the other cages, then let him dissipate and replaced him with the last roach. I really like how this played out.

2E: This took a bit of time to work out. At first I thought the mimic was for blowing up the powder kegs, but then I got to the end and realized I needed to do something else. I tried using the mimic to kill the brain, but that didn't go anywhere. What eventually worked was to push a powder keg with the mimic to release the roaches, kill all but 5 of them, cage the remaining ones, then build a chain of powder kegs from next to the green door all the way up to where the two roaches to the north were going to end up, then blowing that all up with the mimic when Beethro is in the brain chamber. Complicated, but satisfying to get it all working.

I got stuck on 1S1E and gave up for the night. I'll come back and finish soon, I hope.
03-10-2017 at 05:15 AM
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Xindaris
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Derp, I meant 1S when I said 2S there. I am indeed adding a challenge to that room for completing it in the way you did.

I'm glad you liked 2E :D you solved it exactly as intended.

My solution to 2S1E involves running the soldier all around the room behind myself and a crowd of roaches before getting him on the NW plate. The correct-solution widget isn't nearly as picky about when he leaves the plate in this case, it feels like.

I'm not entirely sure, but I think 1S1E might be the toughest room. The intended way involves I think 3 distinct "steps" to the solution, and Insoluble was also able to do it by playing ring-around-the-rosy with a roach for some 200 turns or something, but that's not what I'd call easy either. The challenge is either achievable by Insoluble's break or by doing the intended solution and being slightly more efficient with resources.
Anyway, working out the intended solution to 1S may help understand what 1S1E is about, I think.

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-10-2017 05:25 PM]
03-10-2017 at 05:12 PM
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
Played through this and just replayed the rooms the recent update broke demos for.

Fun level overall. In fact I think each Xindaris hold I've played has been better than the last. A couple of times it started to feel like I was doing the same thing over and over, but that never lasted too long and there's definitely enough variety and interesting rooms. Like Insoluble I didn't care much for the use of green doors, but it's not that big of deal either.

Wasn't taking very detailed notes as I played, but here's another demo set. 2E has an especially weird solution that's a little bit like Insoluble's but also different.

[Last edited by Doom at 03-10-2017 09:54 PM]
03-10-2017 at 09:51 PM
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
Got the hold done today:

1E
Nice and simple. Just had to find an initial serpent configuration that let it and all of the roaches survive the explosion, and the rest pretty much solves itself.

1N1E
Oog, a gentryii chain puzzle. I'm bad with these, so it took a lot of trial and error to find a configuration that worked. I routed the chain over the southern pressure plate in such a way that straightening wouldn't bring it onto an open door, then through the central one, then parked the gentryii head on the northern plate in such a way that it would get released and pull its chain just enough to clear the southern pressure plate. Some extra fiddling was necessary to be able to escape alive. Reasonable solution once I got it, but fiddly to figure out.

1S1E
So, I really doubt I used the intended solution here... The only way I could see to get to the brains was to force a roach to make an unbrained move to get onto the toggle plate. I discovered that by walking around and around the northeast chamber, I could gain one extra tile of brained distance each time I stepped over the diagonal force arrow. I ended up building myself a cage with powder kegs and the mirror that I could lock Beethro into in order to get him out of brain range, then ran the roach around until I had just the right amount of distance to get him in through the force arrow. Demos attached.

1N2E
After figuring out what needed to go on which plate, the main problem I ran into here was roaches walking into puffs and dying. I solved this by compressing down the central block of powder kegs so I could get a few out without creating a path through the middle that roaches would want to take. Once everything was caged, I blew up the remaining kegs, killed the brain, and pressed ctrl-5 for a while to let the rest solve itself. Cool room!

Pretty nice hold. This does a great job of taking the joke theme and making something that's totally playable out of it. I had a really good time with this!

[Last edited by ThemsAllTook at 03-13-2017 02:27 AM]
03-13-2017 at 02:26 AM
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Xindaris
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Thank you! :D

1S1E: Your solution and Insoluble's basically work off of the same bsaic idea, and also both use the fact that you can actually have way more kegs available in that room than you're supposed to (it's only supposed to be possible to save one corner's worth, but I have no idea how to really enforce that). I do think I should do something about the possibility of hitting the cracked orb in any other way than closing the door that's supposed to unlock its fuse.
The intended solution involves the following basic steps:
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Even Doom's solution to 1S1E uses the same basic principle, and without taking extra kegs or giving a roach the runaround for several turns. Ugh.

I think I'm going to make a challenge for doing that room in something resembling the intended way, if I can figure out how to phrase and script it.

EDIT: Challenge added to 1S1E and an arrow which ensures one can't hit the cracked orb too soon.
The challenge forbids putting a roach on that SE facing arrow which is at the northwestern corner of the hallway. I would like to know for absolute certain if the "cage Beethro unbraining" trick can be used to still achieve the challenge instead of the intended solution if anyone's willing to try. Also whether the description in the scroll of this "other challenge" is understandable.

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03-13-2017 at 03:37 AM
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icon Re: new hold (+1)  
quote:
Xindaris wrote:
I would like to know for absolute certain if the "cage Beethro unbraining" trick can be used to still achieve the challenge instead of the intended solution if anyone's willing to try.
Yes, the same solution still works. Go in the cage when the roach is on the south side instead of the left like previously.

Can't think of any simple way to enforce the intended way at the moment. Could maybe do it with a caged monster that isn't allowed to become unbrained until the toggle-door part, but that sounds messy. The other option is to just accept that there are multiple solutions.
03-13-2017 at 12:56 PM
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Xindaris
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I've already accepted there are two solutions; I just want to encourage players or at least challenge hunters to find the intended one.

It certainly seems like every version of this non-intended solution requires at least one of (1) put the player in the 0th or 1st row or (2) put a roach on (29, 2). Before I make any edits I'll ask: If I forbid both of these for the second challenge is there some wizardry that will get around that, too?

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-13-2017 02:36 PM]
03-13-2017 at 02:35 PM
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Doom
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quote:
Xindaris wrote:
It certainly seems like every version of this non-intended solution requires at least one of (1) put the player in the 0th or 1st row or (2) put a roach on (29, 2). Before I make any edits I'll ask: If I forbid both of these for the second challenge is there some wizardry that will get around that, too?
That makes it a bit harder, but there are still lots and lots of ways to make cages, especially if you do the trick with the mirror to get more kegs.

Here's one simple setup that doesn't require stepping on the first two rows.

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03-13-2017 at 03:45 PM
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How many moves is your demo for the intended solution Xindaris? The method I used to break it is ridiculously inefficient, though it may be possibly to use a similar trick in a more efficient way. If the intended solution is shorter though you're pretty much guaranteed that a good number of people will go for that for high scoring purposes.

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03-13-2017 at 04:26 PM
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Xindaris
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My most efficient demo is one move more than one of Doom's demo using the "caging" method. Seems like all conceivable approaches are exploitable aside from scripting a check that the player is doing every single intended step in order, which is just silly to attempt to phrase a challenge around.

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-13-2017 05:50 PM]
03-13-2017 at 05:49 PM
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Xindaris
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New version updated with the following changes:

-There is no longer a challenge for "doing 1S1E the intended way" since I couldn't figure out how and I'm not all that bothered by it to be honest. Instead there is a scroll behind the green door to inform the curious that there are two distinct ways of solving the room.
-Every scroll now has a translation to proper English available by pushing the special command key while standing on the scroll. There is one-time speech notifying the player of this in 1W, which activates when the player almost inevitably stands near the scroll in that room.

Unless someone has noticed something very glaring, I'm about ready to send this to HA. I think I'll give it somewhere between 3 and 7 days and if nobody says anything to the contrary by then I'll do it.

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[Last edited by Xindaris at 03-20-2017 07:33 PM]
03-20-2017 at 07:32 PM
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Caravel Forum : DROD Boards : Architecture : new hold (i made.)
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