A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #1291
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Quartz View Post
    You are presuming that that spell is in V's spellbook.
    Indeed. The best argument against V being 17th level is V has never busted out any 9th level spells (and you get a couple for free every time you level, so V would have SOMETHING in those spell slots. V might use them for more mind blank spells (and again, more than 16th level spell slots might prove V is filling 9th level slots with 8th level spells), but we haven't seen that.

    Relying on "Caster level must be X to cast it in 1 spell" is a weak argument on a prep caster, when they can just prep it in a 2nd slot. It's the same weakness as "Caster could have used spell X in this fight". Well, not if they didn't prep it. Only sorcerers/favored souls etc get to always use every spell they know.

    Until I see V use a 9th level spell slot I won't be convinced V is 17th level.

  2. - Top - End - #1292
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seward View Post
    Only sorcerers/favored souls etc get to always use every spell they know.
    All five of them, that is.
    Last edited by Metastachydium; 2021-11-04 at 02:08 PM. Reason: This was always black, what do you mean it wasn't?

  3. - Top - End - #1293
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Xykonís spell list actually isnít that bad, if you ask me. Could be better, I guess; personally Iíd take Chain Dispelling as an 8th level spell and research something other than Superb Dispelling but heís still better optimized than most official NPCs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squire Doodad View Post
    I could write a lengthy explanation, but honestly just what danielxcutter said.
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  4. - Top - End - #1294
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    Xykonís spell list actually isnít that bad, if you ask me. Could be better, I guess; personally Iíd take Chain Dispelling as an 8th level spell and research something other than Superb Dispelling but heís still better optimized than most official NPCs.
    That all spells he knows fit snugly on a piece of paper will probably not serve him well in the future, though. (Especially since that piece of paper ended up in the wrong right hands.)
    Last edited by Metastachydium; 2021-11-04 at 11:05 AM.

  5. - Top - End - #1295
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Well yeah. Iím just saying for general purposes itís at least passable. Better than most official statblocks, really, though I think at least half of the Order does.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squire Doodad View Post
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  6. - Top - End - #1296
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Metastachydium View Post
    All five of them, that is.
    If this was in black I'd have wanted to sig it.
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  7. - Top - End - #1297
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    If this was in black I'd have wanted to sig it.
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  8. - Top - End - #1298
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Metastachydium View Post
    That all spells he [Xykon] knows fit snugly on a piece of paper will probably not serve him well in the future, though.
    He's a sorcerer, not a wizard. He can't learn more spells than that amount. It's a limitation of D&D sorcerers that they can only learn very few spells.

  9. - Top - End - #1299
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    Quote Originally Posted by b_jonas View Post
    He's a sorcerer, not a wizard. He can't learn more spells than that amount. It's a limitation of D&D sorcerers that they can only learn very few spells.
    I know that. Hence my (recently un)subtle jab at the class.

  10. - Top - End - #1300
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    Quote Originally Posted by Metastachydium View Post
    I know that. Hence my (recently un)subtle jab at the class.
    Never had any problem getting the job done with spont casters, although I do grant some were in Pathfinder which offers more routes to spells known.

    There is a certain power in being able to apply the best spell of 20ish in a given situation over and over until you win. Metamagic goes a long way to expand the usefulness of a lot of lower level spells, and mid-duration buffs can be kept up all day at higher levels just cause low level spell slots aren't that important.

    Prep casters work really well if you're the active party (the one choosing to attack, rather than being jumped with your usual "walking around shopping" spells on) or at least have some idea what you're likely to be up against. But I really prefer the kind where you can spont your stupid picks into something generally useful (divine casters, or a Pathfinder wizard with the right feats). Because nobody is going to guess right all the time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Metastachydium View Post
    That all spells he knows fit snugly on a piece of paper will probably not serve him well in the future, though. (Especially since that piece of paper ended up in the wrong right hands.)
    Except he is ALSO a lich, which means most stuff not covered by spells is covered by immunities. He ALSO seems to be a magic item crafter, and covers any remaining weaknesses with magic items (immunity to fire device and freedom of movement to pick two we've seen on-camera).

    Knowing a sorcerer's spell list is useful, although moreso at lower levels where options are more limited. Actually protecting yourself against that? Well, you need to be immune to force, fire, electricity, energy drain, have a plan for forcecage (even if moderately escapable) etc. Plus you know, actually hurting him. Raw physical power (Durkon's hammer, Roy's sword) is far more likely than any spell, especially as both are returning ranged weapons now.
    Last edited by Seward; 2021-11-04 at 10:49 PM.

  11. - Top - End - #1301
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Yes, but knowing what he can do and planning around it accordingly is still a much better plan than charging in blindly. Resist Energy et. al is easy to cast and can be handled by Durkon or V quite easily, Durkon recently researched Mass Death Ward, and V can Disintegrate the Forcecage. They're not exactly defenseless against him.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squire Doodad View Post
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  12. - Top - End - #1302
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Seward View Post
    Never had any problem getting the job done with spont casters
    Same - heck, sorc has been my favorite class since 3.5, but I can still find lines like that amusing.
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  13. - Top - End - #1303
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Metastachydium View Post
    All five of them, that is.
    Wait, when did we start talking about wilders?
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  14. - Top - End - #1304
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    As has been discussed many times, Blackwing is covered by the familiar bond with V, so V does not need to be CL 21 to include BW, only 18 (which they are if they are level 17 and we incude the I.Stone boost). If it came to it, I wouldn't personally have a problem if people wanted to argue this meant V was level 20 under the rules, but fortunately the Giant has completely ignored the familiar distance limit so far in the comic & thus we can disregard the spell still working after blackwing moves 5 feet away from V.

    NB: saying "maybe Dorukan just stood there and chose not to do anything on his rounds" is worse than saying the fight broke the rules. The author himself knows this, which is why he acknowledges it and says "I'm sure Dorukan cast some spells off panel... it wasn't important for me to show the whole fight, etc". Nor do fly spells get dispelled by energy drain, nor do you fall smack into the ground when your flight spell is dispelled.
    Last edited by TooSoon; 2021-11-05 at 06:45 PM.

  15. - Top - End - #1305
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    As has been discussed many times, Blackwing is covered by the familiar bond with V, so V does not need to be CL 21 to include BW, only 18 (which they are if they are level 17 and we incude the I.Stone boost).
    Like you said, this has been discussed many times. But just as many times people have explained the issues with the line of reasoning, why they disagree or otherwise decided that V being level 17 doesn't work for them. Others have brought this up, but I think its worth tabling this issue until there is more evidence.

  16. - Top - End - #1306
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    1. can someone point to a prior cases of blackwing sharing a spell when they shouldn't be able to?

    2. The comic at least shows Blackwing being targeted by the magic of the telepathic bond, i'd expect the familiar share to look different.

  17. - Top - End - #1307
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carl View Post
    1. can someone point to a prior cases of blackwing sharing a spell when they shouldn't be able to?

    2. The comic at least shows Blackwing being targeted by the magic of the telepathic bond, i'd expect the familiar share to look different.
    In the desert, when they find Girard's booby trap, Blackwing demonstrates the ability to use True Seeing outside the 5 foot range. That is 100% of the times we can prove it one way or the other as far as I know. However, in other instances we see Blackwing, after getting say Stoneskin during the escape from Tarquin, show little interest in staying close to V, which is odd if they lose their protection by leaving the 5 foot range. In addition the rules RE: familiars have been all over the place and not at all consistent with what we'd expect, and we have 0% of examples of the familiar 5 foot distance being enforced. By contrast, other rules (such as CL being used as limits on spells) have clearly been in place (despite a few intances people argue are exceptions to the rules).

    If someone knows more about what sort of damage you take from grabbing an Ioun Stone we could possibly determine if Stoneskin was still in effect, as Blackwing (despite his moaning) was "not damaged" according to V, and had only some mud on 3 feathers. If grabbing it inflicts any actual damage, then the stoneskin is the only way Blackwing would have negated it, in which case it's now 2 out of 2 times the familiar distance limit was ignored.

    There is no indication Blackwing being included as a familiar should have some kind of special art that looks different.

    I also think the most rules correct approach is to handwave 1 rule (the familiar distance limit) rather than 2 (also handwaving the CL limit for the spell). But if people want to argue V is level 20 I'm cool with that too. I prefer them to be listed level 17+. I feel that is a good compromise.
    Last edited by TooSoon; 2021-11-05 at 09:13 PM.

  18. - Top - End - #1308
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    I also think the most rules correct approach is to handwave 1 rule
    And yet we can get it by hand waving 0 rules.
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  19. - Top - End - #1309
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    And yet we can get it by hand waving 0 rules.
    Handwaving 0 rules in this case is impossible. The assumption is the rules are in effect, so the choice is we handwave 1 or 2. There is no option for 0.

  20. - Top - End - #1310
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by Carl View Post
    1. can someone point to a prior cases of blackwing sharing a spell when they shouldn't be able to?

    2. The comic at least shows Blackwing being targeted by the magic of the telepathic bond, i'd expect the familiar share to look different.
    While searching the desert, V used True Seeing and shared it with Blackwing. The next page shows both V and BW searching, while probably being more than 5 ft away from each other (panel 2).
    Another interesting comic for this spell is 693, where the spell seems to have ended for BW, while V still uses it. It might be possible that BW moved to far away im panel 2 (where he is not visible). It seems unlikely (in my opinion) but could be an explanation.

    We also have Bears Endurance and Stoneskin for newish examples. The artwork is similar to the Telepathic Bond.

    But even if your arguments are not perfect, I don't think we should use the bond as evidence for Vs level.

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    I also think the most rules correct approach is to handwave 1 rule (the familiar distance limit) rather than 2 (also handwaving the CL limit for the spell).
    Why would we need to ignore the distance limit? If we ignore the target number, V presumably can include BW in the (increased) number of regular targets instead of resorting to the familiar rules.
    Last edited by Rogan; 2021-11-05 at 09:17 PM. Reason: Including another response

  21. - Top - End - #1311
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogan View Post
    While searching the desert, V used True Seeing and shared it with Blackwing. The next page shows both V and BW searching, while probably being more than 5 ft away from each other (panel 2).
    Another interesting comic for this spell is 693, where the spell seems to have ended for BW, while V still uses it. It might be possible that BW moved to far away im panel 2 (where he is not visible). It seems unlikely (in my opinion) but could be an explanation.

    We also have Bears Endurance and Stoneskin for newish examples. The artwork is similar to the Telepathic Bond.

    But even if your arguments are not perfect, I don't think we should use the bond as evidence for Vs level.
    Note that against the vampires BW AGAIN leaves V's side, despite that in theory removing their protection against the vampires. I see no evidence the familiar distance limit was ever enforced in this comic.

  22. - Top - End - #1312
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Note that against the vampires BW AGAIN leaves V's side, despite that in theory removing their protection against the vampires. I see no evidence the familiar distance limit was ever enforced in this comic.
    Leaving Vs side and thus loosing the protection spells might not be optimal tactics, but I don't think BW gets attacked, so there is no hard evidence either way. BW might have decided that avoiding AoE spells was more important. Or he didn't know the rules that much.
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  23. - Top - End - #1313
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Handwaving 0 rules in this case is impossible.
    V can cast the spell three times. Perfectly possible. You just don't like it.
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  24. - Top - End - #1314
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    V can cast the spell three times. Perfectly possible. You just don't like it.
    Or V could be caster level 21, perfectly possible within the rules and allows everything seen.

    Zero rules broken and no off-screen repeated casting required. If we're insisting on as few rules breaks as is possible and we don't accept 3 castings for some unknown reason, then we should all be arguing for caster level 21 and over whether that is from pious spellsurge or something else.

    Arguing that somehow one rule break is totally unacceptable but another is fine in order to claim level 17 is just weird.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    V can cast the spell three times. Perfectly possible. You just don't like it.
    Ok, leaving aside the fact that I have explained extensively why I don't even think multiple castings would work in the way depicted... it wasn't depicted by the actual comic. If we assumed something else happens that is not depicted, in the space between panels, we could nullify most stats on this thread. That is why the "could have done it between panels" argument should only ever be invoked to explain something that is impossible under the rules, not something we simply don't like the outcome of.

    It's impossible to prove a negative, so you can't prove [insert made up thing here] didn't happen between the comics, and I could invoke that argument for almost every single stat people try to prove here. It is a dud argument when invoked as anything but a last resort to explain away a rules impossible event. You are effectively substituting what actually happened on the panels for your imagination, which is not how the thread does or should work.

    You said the same thing to me about the Dorukan fight only last page, only to stop replying when I explained why your claim was not correct. You were wrong then, and you are wrong now. You just don't like it.

  26. - Top - End - #1316
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    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Ok, leaving aside the fact that I have explained extensively why I don't even think multiple castings would work in the way depicted... it wasn't depicted by the actual comic. If we assumed something else happens that is not depicted, in the space between panels, we could nullify most stats on this thread. That is why the "could have done it between panels" argument should only ever be invoked to explain something that is impossible under the rules, not something we simply don't like the outcome of.

    It's impossible to prove a negative, so you can't prove [insert made up thing here] didn't happen between the comics, and I could invoke that argument for almost every single stat people try to prove here. It is a dud argument when invoked as anything but a last resort to explain away a rules impossible event. You are effectively substituting what actually happened on the panels for your imagination, which is not how the thread does or should work.

    You said the same thing to me about the Dorukan fight only last page, only to stop replying when I explained why your claim was not correct. You were wrong then, and you are wrong now. You just don't like it.
    Can we table this conversation about V's level for a bit and go back to talking about what, if anything, we can deduce from the latest comic? We can always try and hash out an agreement about Vaarsuvius's level later, but it seemed like we were making actual progress coming to some fresh conclusions before we got derailed by this argument. And it seems pretty clear that the conversation about V and methodology is going nowhere fast.

    Namely, what can we figure out about various characters' speeds from #1247? I think speed is worth listing if it differs from the default race/class speed that a character can be expected to have.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emanick View Post
    Can we table this conversation about V's level for a bit and go back to talking about what, if anything, we can deduce from the latest comic? We can always try and hash out an agreement about Vaarsuvius's level later, but it seemed like we were making actual progress coming to some fresh conclusions before we got derailed by this argument. And it seems pretty clear that the conversation about V and methodology is going nowhere fast.

    Namely, what can we figure out about various characters' speeds from #1247? I think speed is worth listing if it differs from the default race/class speed that a character can be expected to have.
    Cool with me. I don't mind people listing the speed. I just want to be clear that listing stuff like Serini's speed, while not listing V as level 17+, is an obvious double standard. It is one that applies to most of the non-caster feats added here. I'm in favour of a more inclusive list, so add it... but there are many objections. Maybe Belkar wasn't running at full speed. Maybe Serini had an item. Maybe V's comment is hyperbolic and not to be taken seriously. Maybe some unknown event or item, not depicted on panel, hindered Belkar's mobility.

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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Maybe Belkar wasn't running at full speed. Maybe Serini had an item. Maybe V's comment is hyperbolic and not to be taken seriously. Maybe some unknown event or item, not depicted on panel, hindered Belkar's mobility.
    Belkar isn't running, or moving at all, so V isn't comparing movement but making a general statement.
    Whether Serini has an item or not is the point, the observation is that she is faster. The way how is unknown and highly speculative.
    V's comment is an interesting one to dissect. "quick than our halfling - a low bar to be sure". She doesn't say "quicker then an average halfling", but specificly our hallfing, which acknowledge Belkar has a different speed. But she still calls it a low bar, which means Belkar speeds isn't impressive high, the normal average 30 feet fits snugly in that definition.

    So Serini is faster then 30 feet, but is she faster then 35 feet?

    V has been flying since before Durkon cast commune, a spell with a casting time of 10 minutes. After Elan walks away there is no more time to cast spells.
    Interesting Haley was flying during buffing, but never flies during the battle (or after) with Sunny and Serini. If there was a fly spell cast during the buffing round, it has worn off. So V must be flying with Overland Flight.

    As for getting exactly 35 speed. The Dash feat add 5 speed. Not a "core" feat but a very easy explanation. Every other option to increase speed seems to add 10 feet, which is impossible due the cap of 40 feet for overland flight.
    There might be some other ways, perhaps Serini has a insanely high speed and a carry penalty. that reduces her speed to 35, but that doesn't fit the scene. (And I can't find what speed gets reduced to 35, but I guess around 100+)

    In the very end, I will say 35 speed with Dash feat is the best fit given current information, but I will admit it's not a 100% guarantee and shouldn't be listed as such.
    The safe option is to list a speed of 30+ (faster then Belkar), but no more then 55 (can't be faster then the maximum speed a generic fly spell.), with an unknown of how Serini obtained said speed.
    Last edited by Yanisa; 2021-11-06 at 05:29 AM.
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Ok, leaving aside the fact that I have explained extensively why I don't even think multiple castings would work in the way depicted... it wasn't depicted by the actual comic.
    A.) There is no reason it would not work in the way depicted. Again, this is basic graph theory. Like, literally day one stuff. The math holds fine. If you disagree, the problem is on your end.
    2.) the *ding* level up similarly was not depicted in the actual comic, yet you have no issue with that. You routinely ignore or dismiss anything that does not bolster your crusade for V to be listed as capable of casting 9th level spells. This, like the math, is a problem on your end.

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    You said the same thing to me about the Dorukan fight only last page, only to stop replying when I explained why your claim was not correct.
    I must have missed your post. Regardless, I doubt I would have agreed with you logic in any event.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Class and Level Geekery XVIII - Everyone's an Expert

    Do we know whether the shield that Durkon has now is his original shield? It looks the same, but perhaps any dwarven small shield would look the same. Greg discarded that together with his armor between #1019 and #1084, then the Order had to leave the dwarven lands quickly after defeating the vampires, so it's not clear to me if he had time to recover it. The first post's entry for Durkon doesn't seem to mention the shield either way.

    I feel like this is important because the shield is a family heirloom, and Durkon's family is named Thundershield from it just as Roy's family is named of his sword. If Durkon manages to pair it with his new lightning hammer, it will probably reveal its thunder power. But I don't know if he already has the combo, or will have to get it back later.

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