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EpicDuel PVP Game Design Notes

Behind the scenes information about EpicDuel's development and releases, a real-time PVP MMO that you can play online in your web browser.

February 28, 2013

The Tournament Continues

We are already on the cusp of the second week of the Golden Yeti Tournament and the competition is extremely fierce! There is still one more week to go so don't give up yet! Any breaks the leaders take is a chance for latecomers to swoop in a snatch one of the top 100 spots!


Do you see your name up there? Congratulations! But be afraid! Those top positions may be difficult to secure as the tournament continues!


New Cores!

Need some diversity in your build? Gear up with 3 new cores this Friday!


Nanosteel Armor: Critical hits getting you down? This passive armor core effectively reduces the damage reduction of all critical hits inflicted on your character!

Dead Battery

*Dead Battery: Applies a curse to an enemy that causes that target's remaining energy to go to you if the enemy is defeated while the curse is active. This means that if you apply the curse to an enemy, and they still have 20 energy after dying, that energy is added to your own pool!* This works even if your ally is the one to defeat the target.

*Dead Battery still requires some more testing, but we do not wish to push the release any later. We will continue testing this core after the release and hopefully make it available next week!

Plasma Meteor: Meteor shower just got an energy damage based equivalent!


Sneaky, Sneaky Azrael

Azrael Scythes

For those that missed it last week, we introduced two new Azrael Scythes last week on the Alydroid. These were limited quantity, so of course they sold out very quickly. This Friday, we will restock twice (depending on demand). Once at 10 AM EST, and again at 5 PM EST. We will also restock the Dage rares at these times. We will only restock if the quantities are depleted.


EpicDuel Turns Four!

Alpha Shot

It’s hard to believe that four years ago EpicDuel had just launched it’s first public Alpha. It’s even harder to comprehend how the game has changed since this momentous event. In that time, we’ve joined with Artix Entertainment, gone through four development phases, released thousands of weapons, developed countless features, and hosted over 100 million battles. Now we are in the midst of the most exciting evolution in EpicDuel’s history: Omega!


Mod Application Deadline

The application deadline is almost upon us, but it's not too late to submit! Please send your COMPLETE application before 12 P.M. E.S.T. this Friday (March 1st) to: EDCallForMods@artix.com

Lycus and Cinderella are still hard at work narrowing down the list of qualified applicants, but unfortunately, due to the volume of mail, we will not be able to respond to all of you to explain why you were not selected. 

Balance and Bugs

To round out the release, we're making some adjustments to balance, targeting the rise in power of Support builds and some more tweaks to help classes that are underperforming. We have some larger changes in mind to help with balance, but we don't want to do anything too drastic while the Tournament is still live.

There will also be a number of crucial bug fixes. For a complete, detailed list of the fixes and changes, check Rabble's patch notes shortly after the release goes live!


Coming Soon!

The Endless is coming

This guy.

Tags: Nightwraith Azrael Tournament Yeti Leaderboard Cores Omega LQS balance Bug Fixes Endless Moderators


February 12, 2013

Call for Moderators and Testers!

Hey there, EpicDuelists! As you may know (if you don't, then...well I can't help you) Omega is live, but testing is far from over! We are once again looking to expand our team! If you are interested in helping us, please read the official note from Lycus below. We don't have his avatar in yet, so I'm ghost posting for him (shhhhh!).



We are currently in need of a few more people to help out in keeping our game safe and helping with bringing our releases out faster and with fewer bugs! We pride ourselves on making the game with you and for you – many of the AE Staff began as regular players, some even very high up now, now is your chance to join our ranks!

Say what now!?

Due to the increase of players, the loss of a few members of staff and the fact we are still growing, we have need of some more hands to help with the responsibility of keeping the game safe for all players, old and new. We also need more help with the Testing our releases for bugs and helping out in the process of making sure everything is ready to go live!

A few of you may be wondering ‘Do Moderators not test releases?’ – yes Moderators previously have tested releases and some still will – however to up efficiency we have decided to split the team so everyone knows their core position and can concentrate on it as such. A few of you may also now be wondering what each position will entitle and I will gladly tell you:

Testers are a team of dedicated volunteers led by myself who play through releases before they are released, on the development server, helping to find any bugs, suggest changes and make sure the release is ready to go live! They are expected to be online on Thursday and Fridays mainly, but potentially other days, depending on when releases are due to release. This role requires less time to be committed over the week, but more specific times (Preferably 3pm-7pm EST on Thursday/Friday).

Moderators are a team of dedicated volunteers led Cinderella and I who help with in-game issues,  deal with people who break the Terms of Service agreement and others of such! In short, they make the game safer and much more fun for everyone.  This entitles a position that will expect you to be on most days of the week for a fair amount of time dealing with reports and other things. 

Note: Both positions involve a lot of responsibility, if you do not feel you can handle that, and then these posts are not for you. Becoming a Mod or Tester is not as easy or fun as it may seem, it comes with work! However it will look great on your CV (Resume) if you are looking for work experience, and it is always nice to help out a game you enjoy playing so much!

Interested in this Opportunity?

Firstly, I would like to stress how important it is that you are OVER 18.  If you are under 18, do not include your age in your application or you start off ‘I am not 18 yet, however…’ you will not even be considered. If you lie about your age, you will be blacklisted from any future Mod application processes regardless of your age then. So if you are under 18, wait, chances will come in the future, do not worry!

What you NEED to include in your email:

  1. Your real name, age and country of residence.
  2. What position you would prefer (Moderator or Tester)
  3. Your EpicDuel in-game name
  4. Artix Entertainment Master Account name and Email (What you use to login to EpicDuel)
  5. Forum account name and email (Not required to have one, but please include if you do)
  6. Your CV (Resume) in English. You may indicate if you speak other languages, but you must speak English fluently to be considered.
  7. A cover letter describing yourself, why you want to be a Moderator or Tester and what you feel the position means.

Please send your COMPLETE application to: EDCallForMods@artix.com

If you have not included all the above and your application is not complete, you will not be considered. Cinderella and myself will read all applications, so please only send ONE in - we also sadly will not be able to reply to every single email, sorry if you do not hear from us.

If we decide to take you through to an interview we will contact you on the email you sent the email from, so please do try to keep an eye out. We will keep you all updated here on how the search is going and when it is going to end!

***Special Addendum from Charfade and the EpicDuel Youtube Team***

Those of you who have been following our Official EpicDuel Youtube Channel may know that the primary contributors are Moderators. If you would like to be a Moderator or Tester AND would also like to contribute to the Youtube Channel, please address any of the the following attributes in your CV:

  • Knowledge in video/audio/recoding editing software. (i.e. Adobe Premiere, Windows movie Maker, Final Cut, Sony Vegas Pro, Camtasia, Audacity, Fraps ) 
  • Ability to upload videos in high resolution 720min 1024max to Youtube with no black letter box. 
  • Ability to add your own commentary to the video (all videos are required to have commentary) 
  • Ability to upload and transfer large project files. (i.e. personal FTP, DropBox, google drive) 
  • Ability to met deadlines, 2-4 day turn around when project is assigned. 
  • Ability to collaborate ideas with the team as well as ask and accept constructive criticism. 
  • Has to have good communication skills and able to organize content for videos, then present information in a clear manner. 
  • Please link us to a sample of your work. We will not allow you to assist with the Youtube channel without previous video experience!

The video portion of the application process is entirely optional, but since those creating videos are privy to a great deal of behind-the-scenes development information, we require you pass through the same screening process as those who wish to moderator or test exclusively.

Good luck to you all! 

Tags: Nightwraith Lycus Cinderella Moderators Testers Application CV


August 01, 2012

The End Is Near

War is Ending... Who Will Prevail?

The Infernal Infiltration War is rapidly coming to its epic conclusion, and it’s still anyone’s game. Legion! Do the Administrator proud and bash down that door before the Lawman gets his grubby hands on imperial property! Exiles! Don’t you know about the rumors about what’s in there? Treasure, weapons... you name it. Are you just going to let the Legion have that? Remember what the Legion did to those poor Yetis? See your Generals for a final rallying cry!

Remember, the winner of this vault will determine the fate of the Vault’s contents, and Delta V.


Great Grenades!

Everybody’s been asking about the grenades, and whether they will have Varium sellback after the War. We’ve decided that they’ll have credit-only sellback, so stockpiling the dropped grenades or grenades from the missions (remember, there are missions for FREE grenades) in the hope of getting Varium is not useful. Grenades are happiest when thrown!



Some players were concerned about moderator participations, as I’m sure you’ve seen us playing in the War. Moderators are able to participate, but we must adhere to guidelines with regard to using grenades and war participation. As some players who’ve been partnered with me know, having a mod on your side is not a guarantee of success, and we don’t get grenades or drops at any greater frequency than you. Mods are also prohibited from being on the tops of the war boards.

Also, the credit-only mechachillid weapons were mistakenly tagged as seasonal rare, when they are in fact permanently rare. They will be getting one additional enhancement slot with the correction.


Olympic Addendum

2012 Olympics

We forgot to mention it in last week's Design Notes (it was in the patch notes), but we are currently offering a limited-time achievement to commemorate the 2012 Olympics in London.  It will be available until August 17th, which should be enough time to collect the 2012 Tokens necessary to claim it!


Mechachillids? In MY AQW? It’s more likely than you think.


One of the Mechachillid drones, Roggark, somehow found his way into Battleon looking for recruits to defend the Vaults! He’ll be selling some of the discarded exoskeletons to Lore’s denizens... but they can only be used on Lore. Funny thing about that. See the AQW design notes for more info!

Tags: Cinderella Infernal Infiltration War AQW Mechachillids Grenades Moderators


May 01, 2012

Keys, New Gear, and a Welcome to our newest Moderators

Hi there EpicDuelists! It’s your friendly Neighborhood Cinderella here with your weekly dose of design notes!


Confounding Keys

As we noted last week, and many of you have noticed, we now have a new system for building your own promo pack, where instead of a set promotional item, you get “keys” with which you can use to unlock weapons, extra credits, and other goodies.

Keys. How do they work?

To clarify some things: all keys must be used at one go, you cannot stock up keys.  You can purchase multiple bonuses to use up your keys if you wish or use them all in one go.  Players who purchased packages prior to this system will not be receiving more keys.  The keys are simply a way to allow you to unlock more bonuses with higher tier Varium packs.  You cannot purchase keys independently from the Varium packages.

If you need some help figuring out how to purchase promos using the new system, Practel has helpfully made this video guide to purchasing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXuVB_TQQZM


Infernal Armaments

Our newest addition to the creative team, Disturbed, has been hard at work on some new weapons as a preview to our next war: the Infernal Infiltration War! Again, we are super-excited to have him around, and he’s going to start working on backgrounds and items for this saga.

Disturbing Items

I should have an outline turned in by the end of this week for the first part of the saga. As before, player action will have a profound effect on the outcome of the story and impact on the aftermath.


New Mods!

We’re proud to announce the selection of the new members of our moderation team!

In no particular order:


Fay Beee




Elf Priest Jzaanu

Digital X




Congrats all! If you see them running around with a green name, be nice to them- they’re new!

I also realize that at least one of our selections comes with quite a bit of controversy. Practel has been a tester and a personal friend of the development team up to and including Artix himself for quite a while. While he is not quite of age, AE has made exception for exceptional teens in the past, and we have confidence in Practel that he will live up to our expectations.


Artix & Sepulchure Toys

Cysero of AQW has already done a great job describing the new action figures, so Imma just rip it and post here.  Riiiiiiiiiiiiiip :3


They are nearly here!

My sources (at least the reliable ones) tell me that they are on their way to the U.S. Toys R Us locations right now. They should arrive there a week or two before theyn reach us here and become availible on HeroMart.Com.

People often ask us why we can't get them to Toys R Us locations in other countries and that's mostly because there are different branches of the company and our relationship is so far only with the American branch of the company.

If our stuff keeps selling well in the American branch then we might be invited to start up a relationship with various other branches of Toys R Us... but that's really up to you guys.

Toys R Us gets to set their own price and we want the HeroMart price to be competative with the Toys R Us price so we have to wait and see what they set their prices at before we can set ours. If we decided early and went too high with the HJeroMart price, then we would be shooting ourselves in the foot and losing sales to Toys R Us. If we go to low, then we undercut Toys R Us and they might decide to cut ties with us which kills any future deals we might make with ANY branch.

SO... soon they will get theirs, we will find out what the decide for the price and then we will be able to tell you the HeroMart price whicl will be very close to the store price.

For the special Limited Edition BLACK version of the toys, I'm pretty sure that the price will be $50. It comes with the same in-game items as the normal versions but we made a LOT less of these and you will ONLY be able to get them from HeroMart. These are for hardcore collectors ONLY (or maybe people who want to resell them on E-bay for double price when they sell our and go rare).

More news on that as it arrises.


LiveStream Event with Dage the Evil

Always have a spotter when using a paper cutter.

As you know, AQW has been inviting their artists to take part in live stream events in the game. The 5th and final artist participating in this particular event is Dage the Evil. I know many of our players are huge fans of Dage, so head on over to AQW around 4 PM EST/Server time.



I was in the field a couple weeks ago and I had the opportunity to get up-close and personal with a web full of Eastern Tent caterpillars (Malacosoma americanum)- probably first instar. The tent was at eye level so I could see the caterpillars clearly. This species forms nests in woody roses including cherry, apple, and black cherry. The caterpillars are capable of consuming the cyanide compounds in these plants, but instead of sequestering the compounds in the hemolymph or fat, or metabolizing them, they keep the cyanide in the gut and vomit on would-be predators.

Of lepidopteran social behaviors, those of the Eastern Tent Caterpillars are among the most complex. Eggs are laid by the adults in spring or early summer, and the clutch contains 200-300 eggs. Upon hatching, the caterpillars construct a silk tent where they live communally, venturing outside the tend only to feed. They use vibratory and chemical signals to communicate with their siblings, and thrash as a group when the tent is attacked by a predator. 

They emerge as cute little fuzzy pink or brown moths.


Infernal Infiltration Preview Continued

This is another excerpt from the backstory for the upcoming war. Interstellar Marshalls John St. Alban and Silas Auer are investigating suspicious happenings on Delta V during their war for sovereignty. The two are separated, with Silas being guided by a Shadow Guard Commander, and Alydriah’s right-hand woman, Valestra Hitchens. Known throughout the galaxy as the “Angel of Death”, Valestra is an expert at hand-to-hand and ranged combat, a skilled sniper, and an accomplished poisoner.


They ventured into Fortune City's tenth district. A center for research and innovation, the district was marked by a large hospital, which Valestra explained is where she had learned pharmacology.

"There's someone I want you to meet. He isn't the administrator, but I think you'll like him."

Valestra led Silas to a back office in the basement where a lanky man wearing navy blue was working with his back turned.


The man turned. He was a man of about 30; tall and long all over, with a visage that seemed to be stuck in a perpetual wonder. His face was thin and wide gray eyes hid behind tinted goggles. A shock of unkempt dishwater blond hair perched awkwardly upon his head.

“Valestra! And is this a boyfriend?”

Valestra laughed. “Aww, Ulysses. You know I’m waiting for you.” She turned to Silas. “Ulysses is a Master Craftsman, brilliant engineer...”

“And a lover of beauty.” Ulysses extended a gloved hand to Valestra, took her hand, and kissed it. “If you’re not Val’s boyfriend...”

“He’s one of the Marshalls. Making sure we’re playing nice.”

“Oh! Well, Marshall, let me show you my latest project... I’m sorry what did you say your name was?”

“I didn’t. It’s Auer. Silas Auer.”

“Auer. Like gold. Splendid!” He picked up a golden object. It was oblong and was carved with strange markings. “Do you know what this is?”

“No. What is it?”

“I have no idea!” He smiled broadly.

“Your project...” Valestra interjected.

“Yes, of course. Pygmalion. That’s the name I gave my creation. It’s a method for extracting the central nervous system of a sick or dying creature and placing it in this ingenious metal suit! So far I’ve only tried it on rabbits and squidlings, but it could revolutionize medicine as we know it!”

As he said this, Ulysses produced a cage containing a little robotic bunny. The cyborg rabbit sadly chewed upon a corncob, and looked despondent and confused. 

“He looks sad.” Silas blurted.

“The alternative was dying from his injuries. This little guy was run over by a ground vehicle,” he said defensively, replacing the rabbit cage. “Lovely to see you, Valestra, but I’m sure I don’t want to waste any more of the Marshall’s time.” Valestra and Silas turned to leave when Silas heard his communicator beep. He read the text message- “Do not trust Alydriah. There’s more than she’s telling you. Find the Delta Vault.”

“What was that?” asked Valestra.

“Spam.  Apparently, there are Fortune City singles who wish to speak with me.” He closed the communicator and smiled rakishly at Valestra, "Intriguing."

She laughed. “Your wife must be jealous.”

“You looked at my background. You know I’m unmarried.”

Valestra smiled to herself. “Come on, there’s more to see, cowboy.”

Tags: Cinderella Infernal Infiltration Delta Knight Keys Varium promotions Moderators Armor Weapons War Toys


March 28, 2012

March Marches Away

March Marches Away

Hi there EpicDuelists! It’s your friendly neighborhood Cinderella, here to let you know about what we’ve got on the agenda for this week.


Bunnies and April Fools

All the classic April Fools / Bunny-themed weapons and armors will be returning this update. Will Nightwraith’s BioDerp weapons (seen here: http://twitpic.com/8sj6wq) be placed in-game? I don’t know! Will there be a new bunny-type auxiliary weapon or sidearm? Maybe! Maybe we can bug Nightwraith to "Make it so!"


These items and more will be available at Naomi in Central Station or Titan in the Bazaar!


Item Stat Rebalance

If you saw our livestream on Sunday, you know that RabbleFroth is rebalancing the stat modifiers and damage of the items in the game based on price, level, and damage. Since he didn’t put details in his document to which I have access *shakes fist at the sky* I don’t yet have the details for you. Unless he posted it in the forum and I missed it. The basic idea is that a standardized formula will be applied to all weapons to determine their power to eliminate the problem of having a clear "best" item at any given level. This forumula will give items a steadier power curve for each level.



The Bionic Battalion Saga will be continuing this week. Brachylagus and Capensis are not the only rabbits preparing themselves for battle: Myxoma will have her day as well. It’s come to her attention that little clueless Lepus is still in the Biological Preserve, and Myxoma needs your help in preparing a rescue mission for Lepus.

We may also be adding some new perma-missions, but I haven’t written any yet you’ll have to search for them! Like a treasure hunt!


Where’s Nightwraith?

You may notice that our resident murderer-for-hire with a heart of gold is missing from his normal hangout. You’ll be able to find him this week in HeroSmash, where he’s been transported due to a personal teleporter accident (that's what happens when you text and warp!). Be sure to check out his special HeroSmash gear, designed by Randor the Red, and his reaction to the world of HeroSmash.

Nightwraith in HS? What a world!

My head is too big. Tooooo biiiig!

Nightwraith will be selling his awesome armor on Friday and will remain in for one week.  Rumor has it that he may return for one day in November, but you never know. Those teleportation devices are notoriously finicky. Timey-whimey and all that.

Stay tuned to the HeroSmash Design Notes for more information!


Gently Down the Livestream

Thank you to all of our wonderful players who participated in the first EpicDuel Artists livestream where all the EpicDuel development staff were in attendance! It was really great to be able to answer some of your questions, and you gave us a lot of ideas! Hopefully, our listeners got a better insight into the development process, as well! The whole thing is still available to view on the EpicDuel Artists channel on Livestream so check it out!

In related news, give us your requests for songs we’ll be forced to sing well in advance. I think I still owe you guys, like, 5 songs. 


I Can Has Mod?

The call for Moderators is still ongoing- we’ve already made a list of some of the people we want to schedule an interview with, and we’ll be adding to that list as fast as I’m able to type it. Remember, patience is a vitrue we value when considering potential moderators, so sending e-mails asking if we've read your resume yet will affect our judgement of your application.

Tags: Cinderella Missions Item Balance Bunnies April Fools Nightwraith Moderators


March 14, 2012

Lovely Lovely Leporids

Hippity Hoppity

Welcome to another Design Notes, EpicDuelists. As I announced on Facebook, we’ve got a lot of exciting things on the horizon for you! We’ve all been super-hard at work these past few weeks, getting stuff prepared for this and the coming weeks.


Rabble Rabble Rabble

RabbleFroth recently got back from the Game Developer’s Conference, the largest annual gathering of professional game developers, and he’s filled to the brim with ideas for how to improve our little game! He’s been working on a few different things that are being released this week. First on the agenda is a revamped leveling curve. Experience gains by level will make more sense for middle levels, although low and high level players won’t see much change. Along with the revamped leveling curve, weapons will be getting a balance to reflect a more consistent increase in power and value across all levels (eg. pricing, resale, requirements, bonus, damages). This is a major undertaking and may take several weeks to complete.

In addition to weapons balancing, the Mercenary class will also be receiving a buff of some kind. According to RabbleFroth's balance data, Mercenaries are having a great deal of trouble at the level cap in 1v1 battles. We've heard many complaints that Blood Shield is not useful enough, so we may be improving it or possible replacing it with a new, more useful skill.


Coming Attractions!

RabbleFroth isn’t the only programmer who’s been hard at work. Titan is releasing several bug fixes, including a bug with the Baby Yeti and a weird faction chat bug. In the coming weeks, we’re moving from CS3 to CS5 (yay Modernization!) to make things better for all of us, and combatting the ever-raging Lag Monster. This may sound like an easy task, but anyone who has developed for Flash knows that it is very picky when it comes to which version you are using, so a lot of the code that worked in CS3 simply will not work in CS5, and the software does little to indicate why. 

We’ll also be replacing the somewhat vague“Power Up!” button on the lost battle screen with helpful tips and tricks to end their losing streak!


The Bionic Battalion Cometh!

The bunnies have escaped from the Biological Preserve, but not every rabbit is a dumb bunny. Several of the rabbits have achieved sentience, and need your help to achieve their plans. These adorable creatures are not seeking world domination, destruction, or greatness- merely answers.

The first rabbit you’ll meet is Brachylagus, the Lagomorph Captain. The first of the rabbits to realize sentience, he is the driving force behind this ragtag group of superintelligent space rabbits. After determining to find others like himself, he was able to find several clever individuals: his lieutenant Myxoma, the strong and loyal Capensis, the gentle Lepus, and the genius Mr. Cottontail.

Brachylagus can be found in Central Station, but you’ll have to search all over Delta V for the other four, as they were separated when all of the rabbits escaped.


Shamrocks from Heaven!

There's now so much green on Delta V, that it's reached critical levels!  That means PvP drops will include, for a limited time, Emeralds of varying quality to redeem at any vendor for mega loot!


On the Silk Road

The Silkworm Bombyx mori is the larval form of the domesticated silkmoth. The moth was domesticated from a wild silkworm species and is completely dependent upon humans for survival. This species is completely reproductively isolated from wild populations and cannot reproduce on its own nor does it have any antipredator defenses, as they’ve been selected exclusively for their silk.


The silk itself comes from a cocoon the caterpillar spins over itself as it pupates. Typically, the silk is retrieved by boiling the cocoons, which kills the pupa. Alternatively, certain types of wild silk can be produced from wild silk moths or tussock moths (from family Saturniidae or Lymantridiae) that have eclosed from their pupae, thus negating the need to kill the pupa. This kind of silk is often called Ahimsa silk, but is not always as desirable, since the silk threads are cut when the insect emerges.


Call for Moderators!

We saved the best for last! With EpicDuel’s continued growth and expansion, we’ll need a few more people to join our team! Here’s a message from Nightwraith about it:


Want to be a mod? Want to spend hours a day not getting paid while helping your fellow players, catching cheaters, hackers, scammers and muting people who use abusive language?

If you answered YES to either of these questions, then you should probably check yourself into the nearest psychiatric hospital as soon as you can, but I also have exciting news for you.

We are looking for new mods / testers for EpicDuel, and now is your chance to apply! One thing we needs to stress - you MUST be over 18 year old. If you are under 18, if you don't include your age, or if you start with "I'm not 18 yet, but..." the application will not be considered.

What they need you to included in your email is:

1. Your real name, age, and country of residence.

2. EpicDuel Game account name and email address

3. Forum account name and email address if one is entered. (not required to have one)

4. Languages you speak/read

5. C.V. (Resume) *please note we'd like the CV in English.

Please send your COMPLETE application to beamod@battleon.com . If the application is not complete, we will toss it out. And please - one application per person.

We will read all the applications. If you are chosen to go through a further interview, we will contact you. Unfortunately, they cannot reply to everyone. If you do not hear from us, sorry.

Tags: Titan Bionic Battalion Bunnies Green Emeralds St Patrick's Day balance RabbleFroth GDC Moderators


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