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Author Topic: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)  (Read 4360 times)

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Screwyioux

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #75 on: July 09, 2018, 10:37:08 am »
+3

Indeed, and this is one of those canonical things that the players I am attempting (poorly) to describe look for. And DVX is on record saying that first player advantage doesn't exist in Dominion (albeit in a forum post from 2008: http://wiki.dominionstrategy.com/index.php/Turn_advantage).
It would be great if you could confine the garbage you say to stuff that doesn't involve me!

What you are linking to is in fact me saying, in 2008, that the advantage of going first is the possibility of getting an extra turn. That isn't me saying that there's no advantage. It's not the tiniest bit that.

If it's important to you to keep saying garbage about me, I will ask theory to have you banned. No joke, find something else to be wrong about, or find some other place on the internet to make up stuff about me.

I don't know if anyone cares about my two cents regarding this exchange, but I'm giving it: There seems to be a bit of miscommunication, I think what Phonological Loop was originally getting at was that Dominion has blossomed into a rich, competitive format that wasn't necessarily foreseen or implicit in the design of the game, and in that context Donald X. has tackled the challenge of approaching content and rules tweaking from multiple design perspectives.

The "pure competitive" aspects of the game are seen through a lens heavily emphasizing 2p, and it's hard to rationalize things like the existence of Black Market and the advantage first player has, whereas they make more sense with more players because increased player count creates a more casual environment.

That doesn't make any of Dominion's strengths "accidental," it just means people enjoy this game for a lot of different reasons. That's a very good thing, but of course it lends itself to areas of friction.

And of course none of us would be on these forums if we didn't love the game. No one gets on here to put it down or the work Donald and playtesters have put into it. We get on here to prop it up, and if we criticize, it's because we're passionate enough about the product to.
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JW

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #76 on: July 09, 2018, 11:39:44 am »
+2

The "pure competitive" aspects of the game are seen through a lens heavily emphasizing 2p, and it's hard to rationalize things like the existence of Black Market and the advantage first player has, whereas they make more sense with more players because increased player count creates a more casual environment.

Black Market favors the more skilled player far more than most cards!

This is from sample of 2.5 M iso games. 

The measure is how hard a time trueskill had at predicting the winner, measured in conditional entropy given a card was in the supply. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conditional_entropy

Goons 0.689 ± 0.002
Colony 0.694 ± 0.001
Platinum 0.694 ± 0.001
Bishop 0.695 ± 0.002
Ambassador 0.695 ± 0.002
Grand Market 0.696 ± 0.002
Black Market 0.696 ± 0.002
...
Cache 0.714 ± 0.003
Jack of All Trades 0.714 ± 0.003
Embassy 0.714 ± 0.003

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #77 on: July 09, 2018, 01:57:12 pm »
0

The "pure competitive" aspects of the game are seen through a lens heavily emphasizing 2p, and it's hard to rationalize things like the existence of Black Market and the advantage first player has, whereas they make more sense with more players because increased player count creates a more casual environment.

Black Market favors the more skilled player far more than most cards!

This is from sample of 2.5 M iso games. 

The measure is how hard a time trueskill had at predicting the winner, measured in conditional entropy given a card was in the supply. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conditional_entropy

Goons 0.689 ± 0.002
Colony 0.694 ± 0.001
Platinum 0.694 ± 0.001
Bishop 0.695 ± 0.002
Ambassador 0.695 ± 0.002
Grand Market 0.696 ± 0.002
Black Market 0.696 ± 0.002
...
Cache 0.714 ± 0.003
Jack of All Trades 0.714 ± 0.003
Embassy 0.714 ± 0.003


A few things:

“Favoring the more skilled player” doesn’t mean “not swingy” - it can simply mean for example that more skilled players recognize the value of a card more often.

Isotropic’s implementation of Black Market greatly differed from the current one, where you have a larger BM deck and no info on its contents.

I think BM usually works out, but it’s hard to ignore those outlier games where somebody just wins on the strength of their BM rolls. Oh well, that’s why it’s a promo card.
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Dingan

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #78 on: July 09, 2018, 03:00:41 pm »
+1

Every once in a while I still get annoyed that Dominion got a worse online client than before for double the prize. But what can you do.

As far as I can tell, they have the same number of Prizes.
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LastFootnote

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #79 on: July 09, 2018, 03:35:44 pm »
0

I don't agree with this. The players I'm talking about -- let's call them "Sirlins," since you think "Spikes" is too broad -- do want mostly the same things and share a certain broad game design philosophy. For instance, when I read Awaclus posts I understand immediately the place he is coming from (though I also enjoy my casual multiplayer games, thank you very much). I've met several people in real life with basically the same gaming philosophy.

(As an aside, I would be very interested in a description of the psychology of "Spikes" who are not "Sirlins." Perhaps I would better understand the distinction you're drawing.)

It is my impression that such people are generally very detail-oriented and find any deviation from certain Platonic competitive ideals off-putting, and have played enough games that they're quick to find and call out such deviations. (The lack of a turn timer in Dominion Online is possibly one example; it's often thought that competitive chess is a better game in virtue having a time limit, and the ability to select different time limits from "blitz" to G90 or beyond. I don't want to necessarily defend this idea, but I do want to point out that a "competitive" person of the kind I'm thinking of will find the idea of unlimited turn time a little weird.)

I hope "Sirlins" do find Dominion off-putting. If they're put off enough, I'll never have to deal with them or their bullshit. For people who are supposed to be subscribing to the tenet "play the game that everybody else is playing", they sure seem to whine a lot about making games more "competitive". I dunno, sounds like scrub talk to me.

If you want to play the equivalent of "no items, Fox only, Final Destination" in Dominion—and I'm not saying you do, but if you did—I think the closest analogue you could get is to find the set of 10 Kingdom cards that most rewards skill, and only ever play that board. Just play the crap out of it. That way you never have to experience the endless variety that makes Dominion so much fun. It's not a perfect analogy, of course, but you can't get a perfect analogy between a fighting game and a turn-based card game.

So yeah, for those who are looking to remove luck or whatever from Dominion, I say, go play Chess. Better yet, go play Chess 2! It's what Sirlin would do.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2018, 04:06:00 pm by LastFootnote »
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #81 on: July 09, 2018, 04:02:08 pm »
+14

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #82 on: July 09, 2018, 04:06:22 pm »
0

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Thanks! And no apology necessary. I prefer to learn from my mistakes.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #83 on: July 09, 2018, 04:18:23 pm »
0

On topic, I can empathize with the attitude of "play the game as it is, not how you want it to be", but there are times when a game is legitimately unbalanced and should be fixed.  I think the closest Dominion has ever come to that is Rebuild, and the folks on here have even found ways around that, so I think that's a testament to the game's design that the only "bug fix" we've ever needed was Masquerade, and that was for a pretty obscure combo.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #84 on: July 09, 2018, 05:16:36 pm »
+1

Fun / balance are subjective. It feels like Possession is the only card people have lots of agreement on, and in that case, it was less about the power level of Possession, and more that the game was really not fun when both players decided Possession was the best thing to do.

Re: people whining about changes to make games more competitive: the core thing about competitive games is that it has to feel good to win. Like, if Dominion was actually winnable by pure Big Money with no Actions on ~70% of boards, it wouldn't be nearly as good of a competitive game. I think a lot of these complaints are based on trying to turn the game into a game they want to improve at. (I mean, I think Chess 2 is still ridiculous, because it's incredibly, incredibly warped around Sirlin's fanaticism with 2D fighting games, but Chess960 is significantly less ridiculous of a variant.)

Re original post: I haven't played a game of Dominion in a few months, mostly because it wasn't fun to play ladder games anymore and I decided to try MTG: Arena instead. But I'll probably come back at some time. I agree with most of Awaclus's opinions and in particular agree about waiting time. I'm guilty of spending a lot of time on some decisions, but was trying to cut it back before I took a break from Dominion. I realized I'd rather play more games than have a slightly better chance of winning the game.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #85 on: July 09, 2018, 08:02:33 pm »
0

If you want to play the equivalent of "no items, Fox only, Final Destination" in Dominion—and I'm not saying you do, but if you did—I think the closest analogue you could get is to find the set of 10 Kingdom cards that most rewards skill, and only ever play that board. Just play the crap out of it. That way you never have to experience the endless variety that makes Dominion so much fun. It's not a perfect analogy, of course, but you can't get a perfect analogy between a fighting game and a turn-based card game.
Incidentally, when I introduced my partner to Super Smash Brothers, we had the problem where I was significantly better than him.  And I thought, based on stereotypes, that we could make it more luck-based by turning up items.  It turns out that items tipped the scales even more in my favor, because I actually knew what all the items did, and he didn't.  This is an excellent illustration of how luck and skill are orthogonal characteristics of a game.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #86 on: July 09, 2018, 08:45:15 pm »
0

If you want to play the equivalent of "no items, Fox only, Final Destination" in Dominion—and I'm not saying you do, but if you did—I think the closest analogue you could get is to find the set of 10 Kingdom cards that most rewards skill, and only ever play that board. Just play the crap out of it. That way you never have to experience the endless variety that makes Dominion so much fun. It's not a perfect analogy, of course, but you can't get a perfect analogy between a fighting game and a turn-based card game.
Incidentally, when I introduced my partner to Super Smash Brothers, we had the problem where I was significantly better than him.  And I thought, based on stereotypes, that we could make it more luck-based by turning up items.  It turns out that items tipped the scales even more in my favor, because I actually knew what all the items did, and he didn't.  This is an excellent illustration of how luck and skill are orthogonal characteristics of a game.
I agree with your conclusion but your reasoning seems rather flawed.  The additional advantage didn't come from him being accustomed to the random way the items were distributed, but from knowing the mechanics of the items themselves, which isn't inherently random (except for a small subset of them, like pokeballs)

In  Brawl, a side effect of using the "Contra Code" to play Zero Suit Samus put her suit parts onto the floor, which could be thrown like a pitcher's fastball and dealt lots of damage.  It was incredibly easy for defending player to pick up some of them to use for themselves, you just tap A when the part is thrown towards you and you catch it.  There were infinite examples of players with a few dozen games against ZSS trying to deal damage with the suit parts as well as 3,000 game veterans of ZSS did, but the ZSS players always got far more mileage out of them, even though they were very nonrandom.  If you chucked 3 suit parts at your partner and he doesn't steal any of them, and then your partner randomly gets a green shell on his side, he throws it at you, and catch it, that illustration wouldn't solve for me the mystery of whether luck and skill are intertwined in game design.



Smash's history of controversy over stage legality would definitely stand on the same side of the fence as DXV's assertion that "not all Spikes want the same thing".  Stages with random occurrences have an uphill climb staying legal, but those that inject varying degrees of variety into gameplay get passionate groups both for and against.

My favorite experience with it was when I got to pick the stage against a large-stagelist-leaning player who is more competitive than I am.  I picked a stage with a super low ceiling, because his character was particularly susceptible to ceiling-kills, then I picked the best ceiling kill character, even though I had almost no experience using that character.  You could definitely say I am "unskilled" at that character, and my opponent stuck with his main.  And I beat him, and asked if losing that way made him reconsider his position on the stage.  He said no.  At the time I thought his opinion was weak in some sort of objective way, but nowadays I have a different view on it, people have their own definitions of what feels competitive to them.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2018, 08:49:22 pm by popsofctown »
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trivialknot

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #88 on: July 09, 2018, 10:04:14 pm »
0

If you want to play the equivalent of "no items, Fox only, Final Destination" in Dominion—and I'm not saying you do, but if you did—I think the closest analogue you could get is to find the set of 10 Kingdom cards that most rewards skill, and only ever play that board. Just play the crap out of it. That way you never have to experience the endless variety that makes Dominion so much fun. It's not a perfect analogy, of course, but you can't get a perfect analogy between a fighting game and a turn-based card game.
Incidentally, when I introduced my partner to Super Smash Brothers, we had the problem where I was significantly better than him.  And I thought, based on stereotypes, that we could make it more luck-based by turning up items.  It turns out that items tipped the scales even more in my favor, because I actually knew what all the items did, and he didn't.  This is an excellent illustration of how luck and skill are orthogonal characteristics of a game.
I agree with your conclusion but your reasoning seems rather flawed.  The additional advantage didn't come from him being accustomed to the random way the items were distributed, but from knowing the mechanics of the items themselves, which isn't inherently random (except for a small subset of them, like pokeballs)

In  Brawl, a side effect of using the "Contra Code" to play Zero Suit Samus put her suit parts onto the floor, which could be thrown like a pitcher's fastball and dealt lots of damage.  It was incredibly easy for defending player to pick up some of them to use for themselves, you just tap A when the part is thrown towards you and you catch it.  There were infinite examples of players with a few dozen games against ZSS trying to deal damage with the suit parts as well as 3,000 game veterans of ZSS did, but the ZSS players always got far more mileage out of them, even though they were very nonrandom.  If you chucked 3 suit parts at your partner and he doesn't steal any of them, and then your partner randomly gets a green shell on his side, he throws it at you, and catch it, that illustration wouldn't solve for me the mystery of whether luck and skill are intertwined in game design.



Smash's history of controversy over stage legality would definitely stand on the same side of the fence as DXV's assertion that "not all Spikes want the same thing".  Stages with random occurrences have an uphill climb staying legal, but those that inject varying degrees of variety into gameplay get passionate groups both for and against.

My favorite experience with it was when I got to pick the stage against a large-stagelist-leaning player who is more competitive than I am.  I picked a stage with a super low ceiling, because his character was particularly susceptible to ceiling-kills, then I picked the best ceiling kill character, even though I had almost no experience using that character.  You could definitely say I am "unskilled" at that character, and my opponent stuck with his main.  And I beat him, and asked if losing that way made him reconsider his position on the stage.  He said no.  At the time I thought his opinion was weak in some sort of objective way, but nowadays I have a different view on it, people have their own definitions of what feels competitive to them.
I don't see how that conflicts with what I said.  I meant to say that adding items increased both the amount of luck and skill, which contradicts the viewpoint that increased luck comes at the cost of skill and vice versa.  I didn't claim that the skill arose specifically from the randomness of the items.

However, I suspect that in the generic case, luck and skill are positively correlated, because randomness typically increases the variety of situations that players need to be prepared for.  Also, luck tends to obscure the positive feedback for playing well, which means it's harder for players to figure out the best strategies even after playing many games.  I understand why some players prefer to reduce luck though, I'm not complaining about them or anything.
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samath

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #89 on: July 09, 2018, 10:50:55 pm »
+1

I don't think it makes any sense to say that luck and skill are correlated. Of course, we're all just arguing about definitions, so let me offer mind: I consider skill the component of variance that correlates with the players and luck the component that does not. In other words, if a competition tends to have the same players winning in head-to-head matches, then it is mostly skill, while if a competition leads to more random outcomes,

The difference here is this always depends on which skill gaps you're comparing. Between a moderately experienced player and a new player, random elements can add variance that will correlated with that skill gap, because the moderately experience player knows how to deal with that uncertainty. But between, say, a top player and a moderately experienced player who have both mastered that aspect, the random elements can instead decide the outcome in a way that does not correlate with their differing abilities. Hence why top players will see random elements as contributing to luck, while new players will see them as contributing to skill.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #92 on: July 10, 2018, 10:15:34 am »
0

tenant

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(sorry)
if only less people would make these mistakes



fewer

Couldn't resist.

In retrospect, Donald's post making a grammar mistake works well as a joke about people making grammar mistakes. However, because we know he doesn't playtest his posts as jokes, it's funny only due to happy accident. If only you'd known what you were doing, Donald.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #93 on: July 10, 2018, 10:30:58 am »
+3

tenant

*tenet

(sorry)
if only less people would make these mistakes



fewer

Couldn't resist.

In retrospect, Donald's post making a grammar mistake works well as a joke about people making grammar mistakes. However, because we know he doesn't playtest his posts as jokes, it's funny only due to happy accident. If only you'd known what you were doing, Donald.

ACTUALLY, these are diction mistakes, not grammar mistakes.
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Screwyioux

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #94 on: July 10, 2018, 01:08:28 pm »
0

tenant

*tenet

(sorry)
if only less people would make these mistakes



fewer

Couldn't resist.

In retrospect, Donald's post making a grammar mistake works well as a joke about people making grammar mistakes. However, because we know he doesn't playtest his posts as jokes, it's funny only due to happy accident. If only you'd known what you were doing, Donald.

ACTUALLY, these are diction mistakes, not grammar mistakes.


I mean if we're going there, it's a vocabulary error. Diction is something else.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #95 on: July 10, 2018, 01:09:43 pm »
+6

The amount of whooshes we'd need to describe this thread...
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #96 on: July 10, 2018, 01:17:57 pm »
+1

Technically, that should be "number of whooshes." It could also be "quantity of whooshes", but that suggests a more formal setting and...yeah...whoosh.
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trivialknot

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #97 on: July 10, 2018, 02:40:45 pm »
0

I don't think it makes any sense to say that luck and skill are correlated. Of course, we're all just arguing about definitions, so let me offer mind: I consider skill the component of variance that correlates with the players and luck the component that does not. In other words, if a competition tends to have the same players winning in head-to-head matches, then it is mostly skill, while if a competition leads to more random outcomes,

The difference here is this always depends on which skill gaps you're comparing. Between a moderately experienced player and a new player, random elements can add variance that will correlated with that skill gap, because the moderately experience player knows how to deal with that uncertainty. But between, say, a top player and a moderately experienced player who have both mastered that aspect, the random elements can instead decide the outcome in a way that does not correlate with their differing abilities. Hence why top players will see random elements as contributing to luck, while new players will see them as contributing to skill.
That's the correct way to think of it, if you think of luck and skill as two competing explanatory factors for who wins games.  But this has little to do with whether a game "feels" luck-based or skill-based.  I did an analysis a while back of Dominion League games among top players, and I concluded that those games were 80% determined by chance.  It seems counterintuitive, but it's actually about right, because when players are of very similar skill level, obviously the differences in their skill are not the primary explanatory factor in who wins.  (At least, not individual games.  In a 6-game match, skill differences add up.)  But does that mean that Dominion is a low-skill game, especially among the most highly skilled players?  I would say not.

I've since adopted the viewpoint argued by Richard Garfield (aku-chi linked to an article, but you can also find videos of talks he's given).  Skill is the difficulty in mastery, and the number of different levels of mastery that can be achieved.  Luck is the uncertainty, either during the course of the game, or in the outcome of the game.  I feel that this definition lines up with our intuitive understanding of skill in games.
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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #98 on: July 10, 2018, 03:05:54 pm »
0

tenant

*tenet

(sorry)
if only less people would make these mistakes



fewer

Couldn't resist.

In retrospect, Donald's post making a grammar mistake works well as a joke about people making grammar mistakes. However, because we know he doesn't playtest his posts as jokes, it's funny only due to happy accident. If only you'd known what you were doing, Donald.

ACTUALLY, these are diction mistakes, not grammar mistakes.

As far as I know, a diction error is a vocabulary error, and Google backs me up. What do you think it means?
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Screwyioux

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Re: Why I'm quitting Dominion for the foreseeable future (not satire)
« Reply #99 on: July 10, 2018, 03:21:56 pm »
0

tenant

*tenet

(sorry)
if only less people would make these mistakes



fewer

Couldn't resist.

In retrospect, Donald's post making a grammar mistake works well as a joke about people making grammar mistakes. However, because we know he doesn't playtest his posts as jokes, it's funny only due to happy accident. If only you'd known what you were doing, Donald.

ACTUALLY, these are diction mistakes, not grammar mistakes.

As far as I know, a diction error is a vocabulary error, and Google backs me up. What do you think it means?

Diction more specifically refers to either saying a word improperly or improper word choice based on connotation. It more often occurs in spoken word than written, but can occur in either. Using the wrong word entirely is vocabulary.

Example of a written diction error: Let me axe you a question. <Clearly intended "ask"
Example of a written vocabulary error: Let me ask you a bacon. <Different word

« Last Edit: July 10, 2018, 03:27:13 pm by Screwyioux »
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