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MadDemiurg

Petition to buff spiritshift to scale properly throughout the whole game (and discussion how to do it)

Spiritshift buff  

98 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you want a decent shapeshifter in PoE

    • Yes
      83
    • No
      6
    • I don't care
      9


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This is not a "buff druids" thread, they are already pretty good. Buffing spiritshift though is not going to buff "caster" druids that much as they are normally not built for it. I would even go as far as saying that I would play a variant druid that would only have 2 spells per level instead of 4 but strong spiritshift (not from powergaming perspective, but just for fun), but that's probably too much hassle to add as a patch. So many games do shapeshifting wrong and it ends up being underpowered. Again and again. Do it right for once! Especially with the claims that there are "no bad choices" in the game etc. It's far from unsalvageable and needs like 1 patch to be decent.

 

Current issues and potential fixes (in my opinion):

  • Damage: 16-25 base damage with 5 DR bypass. This is actually too strong for level 1 DW weapon. I'd suggest reducing it to smth like 12-18 with 3 DR bypass and progressively add a 30% bonus/extra bypass through leveling.
  • Accuracy - this is the main issue. Starting accuracy is OKish, it doesn't scale at all however. +1 accuracy per level is a no brainer to match weapon scaling. I'd also add +5 initial melee accuracy buff to bring it up to 25 base as 20 is not too great.
  • DT - 8 DT is pretty great for low level, but again no scaling. I'd add smth like +1 DT for each 3 levels to match armor scaling up to exceptional.
  • Saves/Deflection - Big problem here is that the shape does not benefit from any items other than belt, so there's no way to boost anything. Either let it benefit from necklaces and rings (seems reasonable) or add smth like +1-2 to all defenses per level when shifted. I like option 1 more as it adds more flexibility
  • Abilities - All shapeshift abilities are pretty weak, but are 1/rest. Imo they should be 1/encounter
  • Duration - 15 sec base is very short to actually build around it. Imo it should be 30 sec at least, with option to shift back earlier on demand. Maybe add it as additional feat (extended spiritshift) for those who want to specialize.

 

Also, make "taste of the hunt" to be a full attack rather than primary. it's a quite mediocre spell atm at best and isn't likely to be any different for unshifted druid as they are unlikely to DW, but would make it a good attack for a shifted druid. I'd like to see more spells that synergize with shifting as well, but that's probably expansion material.

 

I'll post a bit later about shape balance as well.

 

Thoughts?

Edited by MadDemiurg
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I think what would be better is the implications of class kits again. Maybe, Maaybe just one to start with the druid, where you may pick a mage/balanced (original)/spiritformed focus. Right now I think the point of the spirit form is to be a plan B or another tool in the box approach, rather than a powerhouse ability, which if it's going to be one, would have to mean a nerf to Druid spells.

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It need definately scaling in duration or get a perk that allows you to just toggle the form for the duration of the fight. Some other scaling can be nice too

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While I would like to see the shapeshifting part of druid buffed (voted yes to poll), I feel rather strongly this would have to be coupled with the spellcasting element of druid being nerfed. I believe giving them a limited number of spells known, rather than full-list access, would be a reasonable trade for a spiritshift ability which is actually relevant at high levels.

 

If the idea is to just make druids better shapeshifters with no decrease in their casting ability, then you could consider my "yes" vote withdrawn.

Edited by scrotiemcb
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Ya it needs to be useful in someway.

A choice of specializing in spellcasting or shifting would be nice.

 

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/74477-druid-spiritform-balance/page-3?do=findComment&comment=1680695

 

 

Oops, didn't see that thread. Anyway I think a poll is relevant too.

 

Funny thing is, the form IS very powerful already, it just doesn't scale at all. As you've seen I've actually suggested to nerf earlygame damage. For level 1 druid it works just fine if not a bit OP.

 

I agree that class kits would be the best approach for this issue, but I don't think this is something a simple patch can address.

 

"Specialization" can be achieved even now to some extent just by picking talents. For instance, shifter druid would likely go Wildstrike + Greater Wildstrike + WF Peasant + Vulnerable attack + TW style + Elemental talent for wildstrike's element. Caster druid obviously would only overlap in elemental talent maybe.

 

For what it's worth, wizards are much more capable melee fighters now and would stay this way even with the buffs suggested. They need spells for it though. Maybe one solution would be to introduce self buffs that work only when shifted, akin to D&D magic fang etc to scale the shift this way. This would put druid in more or less the same condition as wizard, needing to spend spells to be effective in melee. That might make the classes too same-ish in this regard though.

 

I think scaling accuracy on the claws is a no brainer caster druid or not. Wizard's arcane assault stays more or less useful throughout the whole game. Druid shift without accuracy boost is completely useless at high levels even as a gimmick since it can't hit anything.

Edited by MadDemiurg

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i would like to see full spiritshift/shapeshif klass/kit specialisation, or atleast more focus on spririthift, more spirtishift options/talents, class abilities

but i doubt well get them. maaaaybe in poe2


PIllars of eternty (Hard) 1st playtrough: 155h, 38 m (main Ranger with bear(bow), Eder, Durance(off tank), Hirvais(off tank), Kana(ranged), Aloth/GM)
PIllars of eternty (PtoD) 2nd playtrough: 88h 30 m (main Bleak Walker Paladin, Eder, Barbarian, Monk, Rogue (ranged) Cypher(wand)
(not counting reloads and experimenting)
status i love the game, hate the bugs, and wish for better AI and Pathfinding

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/78749-needed-qualyty-of-life-improvements-information-and-transparency/

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As someone who often plays the shapeshifter class in games (Due to their inherent "Jack of all trades" ability by the nature of various forms to choose from for particular roles)

 

But in PoE, it's quite underwhelming what Spiritshifts are actually like.

 

I mean, only having one (Compared to several other games of varying genres having the possibility of 2-3), having it limited in its usage (1/Encounter and paltry 15 sec duration base), having it's unique abilities being severely limited (Both low power AND /rest rather than /encounter as well as being low usage to boot) and then having static stats that can't be influenced... All adds up to it being quite a lackluster feature and pretty much forces Druids into being essentially a Wizard.

 

I mean, the stats could scale - They already have a mechanic of scaling statistics in the form of the Monk's fists - Every several levels they get upgraded with +damage and + accuracy.

 

It's quite possible that Druids could get a similar thing for their claws and their DR bonus.

 

Having jewellery work for Spiritshift would also be quite nice - Since it'd be no fun to have static characters with little to no customization other than initial stats. Heck, it may even be nice to have clothing such as boots and hats to also work (Just to increase customization)

 

As far as the shift's abilities go... It'd be really nice to get a specialization choice (Be it an ability choice or early talent or whatever) to go for the spellcaster route (Which we currently have) or to get more limited access to spells but with a major boost to Spiritshift. Such as getting additional abilities per form (As well as making them /encounter) and more flexible shifting potential (More uses /encounter. Longer/indefinite duration etc).

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Question to those who have played druid as main: Carater creation says you are able to learn additional forms trougout the game, is that so, or is that just a leftover from a scratched feature?


PIllars of eternty (Hard) 1st playtrough: 155h, 38 m (main Ranger with bear(bow), Eder, Durance(off tank), Hirvais(off tank), Kana(ranged), Aloth/GM)
PIllars of eternty (PtoD) 2nd playtrough: 88h 30 m (main Bleak Walker Paladin, Eder, Barbarian, Monk, Rogue (ranged) Cypher(wand)
(not counting reloads and experimenting)
status i love the game, hate the bugs, and wish for better AI and Pathfinding

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/78749-needed-qualyty-of-life-improvements-information-and-transparency/

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Good post. I think the Spiritshift should ultimately be at will. Maybe first talent to increase duration, second talent making it at will and further increasing duration.


Capture.jpg

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@Taril: Yep, that's pretty much in line with my suggestion

 

Question to those who have played druid as main: Carater creation says you are able to learn additional forms trougout the game, is that so, or is that just a leftover from a scratched feature?

 

No, and I don't think it would make any sense since shapes are only marginally different. It would be cool to have unique shapes with distinct roles but that's PoE2 material at best. Fixing the current shape is not too much work really.

 

 

Good post. I think the Spiritshift should ultimately be at will. Maybe first talent to increase duration, second talent making it at will and further increasing duration.

That would work, although further increasing the duration would make little sense if it's at will already. I'd say 30 sec base is reasonable enough to justify building smth around it. If it becomes at will, shape needs to have some disadvantages though (currently it has more than enough, but we're accounting for potential fixes), or you'll stay in it 24/7.

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Spiritshift is not stellar, but keep in mind it's instant. If you stun an enemy or knock him prone, a druid can capitalize on this right away and cut him to pieces.

 

Other caster abilities (Brilliance, Interdiction, Arcane Assault) need help of party members to reach their full potential. Why can't the same be true for druids ? Zealous Focus aura, or a potion of Eldritch Aim. Devotions of the faithful, or a reduction to enemy deflection.

 

I would enjoy druids more if various shapes were more distinct and had their pros and cons. A druid would have access to a number of forms and choose the most suitable one. No, it's not WOW, the idea is old:

 

 

 

In many fairy tales and ballads, as in Child Ballad #44, The Two Magicians or Farmer Weathersky, a magical chase occurs where the pursued endlessly takes on forms in an effort to shake off the pursuer, and the pursuer answers with other shapeshifting, as, a dove is answered with a hawk, and a hare with a greyhound. The pursued may finally succeed in escape or the pursuer in capturing. This appears in legends around the world. One is "The Story of Calicoin", the story of a powerful witch called Ceridwen who wished to make her son Avagddu a powerful potion that would make him a wizard. She ordered her servant-boy Gwion to brew it for a year and one day, but on the last day he accidentally spilled three drops on his finger. When he put his finger in his mouth to cool it, he swallowed these drops and instantly became a wizard. Ceridwen found out and began to chase Gwion. Gwion first changed into a hare, and Ceridwen changed into a greyhound. The boy became a fish, and the woman an otter. He turned into a dove, she turned into a hawk. Finally Gwion transformed into a tiny grain of wheat, hiding with many other grains on a barn floor. Ceridwen transformed into a black hen and pecked up all the grains, including Gwion.

In Dapplegrim, this was set as a challenge; if the youth found the transformed princess twice, and hid from her twice, they would marry. The Grimm Brothers fairy tales Foundling-Bird contains this as the bulk of the plot.[13] In Greek mythology, Zeus frequently transformed himself and his love to escape Hera's wrath, or that of the women's fathers, but generally in a simplified form, with only one transformation.[14]

In the Italian Campania Fables collection of Pentamerone by Gianbattista Basile, tells of a Neapolitan princess to escape from her father, who had imprisoned, she becomes in a huge she-bear. The magic happens due to a potion given to her by an old witch. The girl, once gone, can get her human aspect.

In other variants, the pursued may transform various objects into obstacles, as in the fairy tale "The Master Maid", where the Master Maid transforms a wooden comb into a forest, a lump of salt into a mountain, and a flask of water into a sea. In these tales, the pursued normally escapes after overcoming three obstacles.[15] This obstacle chase is literally found worldwide, in many variants in every region.[16]

In fairy tales of the Aarne-Thompson type 313A, the girl helps the hero flee, one such chase is an integral part of the tale. It can be either a transformation chase (as in The Grateful Prince, King Kojata, Foundling-Bird, Jean, the Soldier, and Eulalie, the Devil's Daughter, or The Two Kings' Children) or an obstacle chase (as in The Battle of the Birds, The White Dove, or The Master Maid).[17]

In a similar effect, a captive may shapeshift in order to break a hold on him. Proteus and Nereus's shapeshifting was to prevent heroes such as Menelaus and Heracles from forcing information from them.[18] Tam Lin, once seized by Janet, was transformed in her arms by the faeries to keep Janet from taking him, but as he had advised her, she did not let go, and so freed him.[19] The motif of capturing a person by holding him through many transformations is found in folktales throughout Europe,[20] and Patricia A. McKillip references it in her Riddle-Master trilogy: a shapeshifting Earthmaster finally wins its freedom by startling the man holding it.

Another variant was used by T. H. White in The Sword in the Stone, where Merlin and Madam Mim fought a wizards' duel, in which the duelists would endlessly transform until one was in a form that could destroy the other.[21]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shapeshifting#Transformation_chase

Edited by b0rsuk

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Making different shapeshifts feel different is actually a question of tweaking some numbers so it's not that difficult. For example, bear form: increase the DR, decrease the deflection and reflection, serious buff to HP, high damage but low accuracy, high Will defense. So, effective against units with low deflection but high HP, good tank but vulnerable to spells. And the Stag form - high deflection, reflex and accuracy, movement speed but lower damage, lower Fortitude and HP. Effective against mages and other low-DR enemies, but is not that effective against heavily armed melee fighters. 

Etc.

 

So I'd say it'd be good if druids had an option to choose a second form, let's say on level 5? (because if the shape****s are buffed and they become viable it'll be boring to use the same form every single encounter as well!)

 

But all in all I think the shapes should be worked on if only because they look really cool and it'd be a shame if no one really used them...

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I don't think it would make any sense since shapes are only marginally different.

 

 

Having multiple forms available in the current iteration, isn't worth it.

 

But if tweaked enough, it's possible to give each form some benefit(s) to help differentiate them.

 

Stats could be tweaked between them - So for example, Bear gaining more DR, gaining more engagement targets, gaining ability(s) that help reinforce being a front line tank. Meanwhile Wolf could get more movement speed, co-ordination damage (Since Wolves hunt in packs), abilities that assist with CC/Debuffing enemies (Such as Hobbled). Cat could get more attack speed, sneak attacks, damage dealing abilities etc.

 

Which would help differentiate them (By nature of statistical differences, potentially increasing over time much like other form based stats) as well as provide a more stimulating gameplay for a Shifting Druid - Since, in the current iteration if just the base stats were changed, like 90% of fighting in a form would just be auto-attacking (Especially with how lackluster the abilities currently are). With differentiated stats and the potential to obtain a second (Or even third) form with multiple abilities each, it would help keep your options of things to do quite high - Especially if they became usable often enough to allow you to switch between forms in combat to use different abilities (Likely at the cost of even more spell usage, possibly even removing the ability to use spells at all with this much flexibility)

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Spiritshift is not stellar, but keep in mind it's instant. If you stun an enemy or knock him prone, a druid can capitalize on this right away and cut him to pieces.

 

Other caster abilities (Brilliance, Interdiction, Arcane Assault) need help of party members to reach their full potential. Why can't the same be true for druids ? Zealous Focus aura, or a potion of Eldritch Aim. Devotions of the faithful, or a reduction to enemy deflection.

Arcane assault doesn't really need party members to work and scales just fine with level (+1 accuracy/level, being an ability). It also benefits from all items you might have that influence aoe, damage or duration on any way. Interdiction scales in the same way. It surely works better with a party, but that's because it's a support ability. Shapeshift doesn't help anyone but druid (and it actually hurts him on mid-high levels). I'm ok with shape having subpar accuracy compared to melee classes. I'm not ok with it becoming gradually worse with level.

 

 

As for shape diversity, I agree that tweaking shape stats would help to differentiate them and make shifting more fun. However, I'd like to see the shapes fixed in their current state first at least. Doing both that and tweaking stats would likely cause issues if done simultaneously, not mentioning needing more work.

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I'm all for it as long as there is an option to pick either a caster druid or a shifter. The caster druid would be unchanged, no nerfs to casting. The shifter would still be able to cast but with some penalty. Obviously the shifting would be stronger. Perhaps he/she could get exactly the same spells but would get them a level or 2 behind the caster Druid. ie. No spells at first level. First level casting at second. Not 100 percent sure about though I do know that I want the option to play as a caster or a shifter.


"Those who look upon gods then say, without even knowing their names, 'He is Fire. She is Dance. He is Destruction. She is Love.' So, to reply to your statement, they do not call themselves gods. Everyone else does, though, everyone who beholds them."
"So they play that on their fascist banjos, eh?"
"You choose the wrong adjective."
"You've already used up all the others.”

 

Lord of Light

 

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Oh yes, just remembered: about different shapes. Originaly obs said that they would link shape shifting to different forms via quests. I don't think it would be a good idea for each shifter to have 5 different forms, but it would be great if say learning a new form was linked to to questing in some way. It was an excellent idea, though obviously they never had time to implement it. Would be nice for the expansion. BTW they where planning to do something similar with chanters collecting new chants as they play through the story. Also a great idea and hopefully one for the expansion.

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"Those who look upon gods then say, without even knowing their names, 'He is Fire. She is Dance. He is Destruction. She is Love.' So, to reply to your statement, they do not call themselves gods. Everyone else does, though, everyone who beholds them."
"So they play that on their fascist banjos, eh?"
"You choose the wrong adjective."
"You've already used up all the others.”

 

Lord of Light

 

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A talent to scale with the level the animal forms powers, but on transforming back the player gets a debuff on account of mental exhaustion and confusion.

Example:
for x seconds (x=arbitrary value+1/3 player level):
-spells power decreased of 50%
-attack speed decreased of 30%
-no spell is foe only or friend only
-increased endurance regeneration 25% (fading side effect of the transformation)

As a lore justification, the most powerful Spiritshift is a deeper plunge in the animal mind so return to a normal state is more difficult.


I've come to burn your kingdom down

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A talent to scale with the level the animal forms powers, but on transforming back the player gets a debuff on account of mental exhaustion and confusion.

Example:

for x seconds (x=arbitrary value+1/3 player level):

-spells power decreased of 50%

-attack speed decreased of 30%

-no spell is foe only or friend only

-increased endurance regeneration 25% (fading side effect of the transformation)

As a lore justification, the most powerful Spiritshift is a deeper plunge in the animal mind so return to a normal state is more difficult.

Mmm very nice idea, possibly the best idea I've heard, but tied to that there would have to be a limit on how long the druid can hold his shapeshifting for, much like it is currently. Otherwise he would just remain in spirit shift indefinitely casting spells. Edited by rheingold

"Those who look upon gods then say, without even knowing their names, 'He is Fire. She is Dance. He is Destruction. She is Love.' So, to reply to your statement, they do not call themselves gods. Everyone else does, though, everyone who beholds them."
"So they play that on their fascist banjos, eh?"
"You choose the wrong adjective."
"You've already used up all the others.”

 

Lord of Light

 

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A talent to scale with the level the animal forms powers, but on transforming back the player gets a debuff on account of mental exhaustion and confusion.

 

Example:

for x seconds (x=arbitrary value+1/3 player level):

-spells power decreased of 50%

-attack speed decreased of 30%

-no spell is foe only or friend only

-increased endurance regeneration 25% (fading side effect of the transformation)

 

As a lore justification, the most powerful Spiritshift is a deeper plunge in the animal mind so return to a normal state is more difficult.

My initial thoughts on this are:

 

1) What stops someone just casting all their spells before/while Spiritshifted? Bypassing the downsides by the sheer nature of just not needing to use spells at that point in the encounter.

 

2) How does the attack speed decrease and endurance regen work if Spiritshifts are made more usable (No longer 1/encounter)? Which is a potential buff to make a Spiritshift focused character more usable on higher difficulties/levels (Where a limited Shift may not last an entire engagement)

 

3) How does this debuff interact with Intellect? Will it scale up with higher intellect (Since it's a debuff being caused by your character) or is it possible to code for intellect to reduce the duration proportionately (Or will it be made to not scale with intellect at all?)

 

I mean, it's an interesting mechanic for sure - Both lorewise and it's effect it has, it cripples spell casts and makes them much harder to use effectively (Well, some of them... A lot already hit everyone) and makes it so you can't come back into a full damage build, but gives you a heal to keep you alive while you're getting to grips with your change in ability.

 

There's just a lot of things that can make it not as effective as a deterrent from combining a buffed Spiritshift build with strong spell casts while something more boring like -max spell casts, +level requirement for learning spells, -spells accessible at a time or even just a flat -spell effectiveness as a base effect that's always present guarantees that you have that trade off of effectiveness for the power of spiritshifting.

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I'd say +1 accuracy/level on claws should be a baseline, caster druid or not. It still won't make shapeshift better than a level 1 wizard staff spell, which can be used like up to 7/encounter at levels 9+. Since druids get the shape in any case it is really weird to have an ability that becomes completely useless with levels.

 

Getting bonuses from jewelry or some equivalent scaling bonus probably should be added as an improvement to the basic shape as well. Otherwise, again, shifting is pointless once you get better items.

 

Everything above that (extra duration, DR improvements, extra damage, abilities improvements) can probably come with class variants/extra talents/whatever. Having multiple shapes as well, if that's ever implemented.

 

From RP perspective, i think a fun option would be to add smth like a "Feral shape" talent that:

  • Greatly increases shape's stats
  • Locks you out of spells when shifted
  • Adds a "spell holding" like effect for the shape, so whenever you take a critical hit you shift automatically (Hulk mode)

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lol who voted no for a decent spirit shifter? You want druids to be crap at shapeshifting?

 

The shapeshifting shouldn't be too strong like some of the suggestions in this thread seem to hint at, though. They're already great mages, and if they can just pop relentless/returning storm and go wreck something in melee while they wreck everything with lightning strikes, I don't know why I'd choose any other melee character for DPS. Their magic would have to take a hit.

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I wish the devs would mention whats going on with druid, if things are working as intended or not.  Right now many people think its kinda broken or not too useful

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I would prefer druids if shapeshifting was like that:

1. Toggle between the forms at will, no timed duration - it's pretty underwhelming to run out surrounded by a bunch of enemies.

2. Scale to level to keep it relevant for the whole game - now it's super powerful at the beginning, lame soon after.

3. Disable spell casting while shifted - maybe with a longer shifting cast time, definitely not instant.

 

You'd have to waste some time transforming, so it wouldn't be very clever to switch back and forth at a drop of a hat, and you'd have to choose what would be more appropriate to the situation, spells or mauling.

 

As it is right now I just don't like it.

 

Note: I didn't vote. The choices are deceptive. Even if someone is happy with the current iteration, would still have no reason to vote 'No'.

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How about a radical idea...

 

Everytime a druid levels up, he would have to make a choise whether to improve his connection to the elements & nature (learning new spells) or improve his connection to his animal side (improve spiritshif form and melee abilities).

 

So you could focus on becoming a traditional druid caster or some kind of spirit shifter fighter type or something in between? :)

Edited by Carados
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