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Messages - Morningshark

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Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 22, 2020, 07:10:15 PM »
I don’t know anyone was supposed to figure out Break the Wall growing up. I remember stumbling onto it by luck as a kid. And when I it said to drop into the cage, I had to use the cannon and create an arc. Had no idea about that dang owl.

Game is still fun to revisit, but the third floor and onwards is where it gets a little tedious for me.

TalkBack / Kirby Fighters 2 (Switch) Review
« on: October 11, 2020, 03:21:26 PM »

The Kirby fighting genre might as well be a copy ability at this point

It feels like there are more Kirby-themed fighting games being put out nowadays than any other type of Kirby game, let alone the traditional action-platformer. Kirby Fighters 2 falls right in line as the next take on Kirby throwing down against other Kirbys and different characters from the franchise. This latest take on a party game crossed with a fighter offers a fun, albeit short experience that dances between being a bit lopsided in both content and difficulty, as well as what to expect from a party title. And while it leaves something to be desired, it also has an exceptional amount of charm in the presentation that left me more than simply pleased during my time with it.

Kirby Fighters 2 is actually the third Kirby Fighters game. The first was a side mode in Kirby: Triple Deluxe, and then a sequel called, “Kirby Fighters: Deluxe” was also released. Not to be confused with the separate series, Kirby Clash or Super Kirby Clash, which are also Kirby-themed fighting games. Unfortunately, I can’t really say that Kirby Fighters 2 makes much of an attempt to stick out from its predecessors, and while that isn’t a bad thing, it does make it increasingly difficult to distinguish between them. Essentially, it’s a fighting game where you play as Kirby with different copy abilities, and you fight to the death. Rather than obtaining Kirby’s signature copy abilities while playing, players choose a Kirby holding a specific ability prior to a match, which in turn acts as a character selection menu; there are also a handful of guest characters, like Gooey. Don’t expect the level of playable characters that was seen in Kirby Star Allies. It’s more about the copy abilities this time around, which are unlocked by earning Fighter Points by playing any game mode. If you know you enjoy a specific ability, it can be a bit frustrating having to grind to get it. The experience was decent, but there did come a point where I was losing my focus on what I was doing and just going through the motions. Depending on the mode, things can get slightly more involved, but by and large, it’s a pleasant fighting game.

There is a story mode, but calling it that is very generous. King Dedede and Meta Knight have teamed up and you have to fight them because they’re being bad guys at the top of an evil tower. Every battle you fight takes you up a floor, and the cycle repeats. The kicker is that in between every fight, you can choose an item to buff up you and your partner. This adds a thin layer of strategy to the fights, similar to how a rogue-lite game plays. There are also items found within fights that can drastically change the tides of battles, sometimes unfairly. Some items create random events like putting everyone on one side to sleep or filling the stage with healing items. Item Stars that will occasionally just show up can make almost anything happen, in your favor or the opponent’s. A bunch of healing items could appear, everyone could be put to sleep, or a random explosion could happen. It’s funny because this could be a very enjoyable thing in the party aspect, but I didn’t see an option to turn it off anywhere, which kind of clashes with the competitive aspect that an online match could bring.

There is a stronger emphasis on double battles in Kirby Fighters 2 than I have seen from previous titles. Every online battle has you partnered up with another player in a 2v2 session. In the online mode, you can just forget even trying to play the core game. I won’t dwell on this, but Kirby Fighters 2 is another “your mileage may vary” experience in terms of performance. I had a few crisp matches, and a lot of slide show fights. A computer player will accompany you if you don’t have a friend. The AI is fine, but can occasionally be a bit too daring. I found several instances where it would run headlong into danger, not really accounting for low health, so it can feel a bit like micromanaging in that regard. That said, battles are so easy that it isn’t that big of a deal. The AI definitely won’t play the game for you like in Star Allies.

While I do think there is a slight issue with its identity, Kirby Fighters 2 brings menus, visuals, music, stage selection, and really an entire package with fantastic presentation. The characters look amazing in HD and have very expressive animations, and I loved the stages. A lot of them have bosses on them that act as stage hazards, but unfortunately there isn’t a way to turn those hazards off. Regardless, they do add a lot to the uniqueness of each stage, and that was appreciated. Kirby Fighters 2, overall, is an incredibly easy game that is somewhat lacking in content. In terms of replay value, it’s fun if you want to play with friends for a little bit, or go chasing golden ranks to your heart’s content. I am hard pressed to say, though, that I would find myself picking this fighting game to play at a party over any other game on the Switch that offers a similar experience. It’s not trying to be a full fighting game, and it’s not doing enough to be a complete party game. I think the strategy aspects in the story mode, the party aspect with the items, and the experience in a competitive sense for online could each have been fleshed out a bit more. This is a very pleasant package that’s not as fully equipped as it could be. There’s a lack of diversity with what you can really do, even just down to the options. I don’t think there is anything particularly bad here, it’s just unimpressively lacking.  So for what it’s worth, I think you’d get a few hours of enjoyment out of this budget title. Just don’t expect anything that you can’t find elsewhere.

I haven’t listened yet. But I feel slightly targeted based on the title.

TalkBack / Re: Cat Mario and Cat Peach Amiibo Revealed
« on: September 03, 2020, 07:33:56 PM »

Yesssssss they'll have to pry these amiibo from my cold dead hands!

I was just about to ping you. Oh Caaaaaaarmine!

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo Celebrates Mario's 35th Birthday in Style
« on: September 03, 2020, 07:33:06 PM »
I would have expected a bit more then just ports (with upscaling and some aspect ratio changes). Especially when Super Mario All-Stars was shown right before it and casts a bit of a shadow. That said, I'm happy to have Sunshine finally free of the GameCube. Even if it is still everything that Sunshine has to offer

Why didn't they remove the white background in the "A's" of the logo

TalkBack / Re: Kingdom Hearts: Melody Of Memory Launches November 13
« on: August 26, 2020, 05:02:28 PM »
Is "Let it Go" still a song people flock to on the regular?

One of the YouTube comments on this Direct Mini was, "More like Nintendo Dire: The Musical" because of the abundance of music-based games. Got a good chuckle from me.

TalkBack / Re: Puyo Puyo Tetris 2 Drops In December 8
« on: August 26, 2020, 04:55:25 PM »
I recall holding off on the first title around the Switch launch. Then after Tetris 99 was released, I removed it from my Wish List. For those who want it (that online 4 player looks like a good time), cool. I think I'm gonna pass though.

I’m a bit late to the party but I figured I’d throw out that I have been replaying Superstar Saga, Partners in Time, and Skyward Sword. Admittedly, I’ve beaten all of these before but I’m replaying to get footage for NWR. I don’t think that really fits in with the rules of a backlog but I thought I’d at least share. I have finished both of the Mario RPG’s and I’m about halfway through Skyward Sword at this point. 

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo News Report: A Return, And Also Manifold Garden
« on: August 26, 2020, 12:55:02 AM »
It was a pleasure listening to your guests! I really appreciated William Chyr’s insight in the making of a puzzle game

Nintendo Gaming / Re: Super Mario Maker 2 - Did anyone here get it?
« on: August 25, 2020, 02:55:47 AM »
Hey Mop it Up. Thanks for always playing my levels! I promise I'll finish my Odyssey levels.

After seeing this in the news, I decided to revisit it. I beat it back around Christmas of 2015. Some enhancements I would suggest / hope they would address.

Remove the animation where Link picks up an item and you see where it is in the inventory upon every new play session.

When dropping to the surface, show the actual map where each bird statue is, because I rarely remember the specific spot without seeing the map. The painting is pretty, but it would be nice to be able to zoom into it.

Add the ability to go from area on the surface to another area without having to jump from.

There aren't that many quests, but a small quest log would be handy.

Options to filter how much Fi talks with Link about gameplay content vs. story content

Content changes:
(These change the fundamental game and may work better in a direct sequel so they might not even be worth mentioning but ah well)

Button controls. I don't know how they'd do it for combat, but a lot of things like flying, swimming, using the beetle or really any of the items, would be great. I speak for accessibility more than anything. Let's Go Pikachu & Eevee having required motion controls when docked was very disappointing to read about. Wii MotionPlus worked great, albeit not perfectly. It still works great. But the option would be great.

More content in the Sky. Add some puffy clouds for Link to shwoomp through, or some weather effects, or rainbows, or lightening you have to avoid. Maybe a few islands that the Skyloft people haven't cultivated yet that you can explore and find specific crafting materials and / or insects. Maybe there are some characters like the Rito who also live in the sky that you can find later in the game like in a segmented area. Or maybe it's just a few and they are endangered and you have to bring them crafting items to help rebuild their home like with Tarrey Town. Lots and lots of ideas here. But more than anything....

Let me fly at night

Make all three segments of learning the Goddess Song (that notorious padding after the Fire Sanctuary) optional. That part really kills the enjoyment. You'd have to rework / change the pacing of the story a bit.

Very new content that I don't expect but hey it'd be cool:
Groose Tower Defense side game?

Impa / Zelda side mode where you get to experience Zelda's experience on the surface running from Ghirahim rather then watching it in the credits.

Configure all three Imprisoned fights into one fight were each stage has the Imprisoned change.

Add some upgrade options to the Stamina Meter...this could maybe tie into some of my ideas on beefing up the Sk

Played both Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga (GBA) and Partners in Time. For "reasons" I won't divulge, the last few hours of Partners in Time were horrible because of some frame rate drops. That said, I had a great time revisiting them. It's been years. Of the two, I enjoyed Superstar Saga more, and of all of the Mario & Luigi titles, it seems like the most versatile in terms of hardware it could be played on because it's a fairly brisk play through, with zero reliance on touch screen, microphone, dual-screen mechanics. I'm hoping we get a new Mario & Luigi title, despite the sad closure of Alpha Dream, but if we don't, a port of Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga in HD would be great!

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 683: Reggie's Strangely Square Back
« on: August 25, 2020, 01:48:47 AM »
I feel like everyone who is in the more like thousand year door hasn't played it recently. I remember Guillaume way back criticizing it and I was not in agreement. I loved that game. I played it nearly straight through when it came out. 

I played it a few years ago and it's just okay. Maybe barely okay. I did not enjoy it and was very bored at the end.

They just need to re-release it so everyone remembers

Haha, folks on The Thirsty Mage also replayed TTYD recently and had the same epiphany, I think. They didn't hate it, but they talked eloquently about the flaws they saw in the level design, especially.

I'll play Origami King whenever it shows up from the library. I do enjoy the style and humor of those games, I just think personally that the original Mario & Luigi is even funnier than TTYD, and doesn't drag on in the way that I think TTYD or even ulterior M&L games did.

I can't remember if this showed up in that very long discussion or not, but I did replay TTYD back in January when I working on making some Paper Mario content. It's still a great game for me nostalgically, but the flaws are way more present. Think as more people return to it, they see those flaws, and I think the common desire is to have an iteration build off of what people did like about that and the original.

I replayed both Superstar Saga and Partners in Time last month (yes...I'm about sick to death of the Mario RPG brand for the time haha) and that series is an example of taking the same game and iterating on it, arguably not enough. But is probably closer to what fans of the RPG Paper Mario are looking for.

TalkBack / Takeshi and Hiroshi (Switch) Review
« on: August 20, 2020, 04:45:00 PM »

You play as a game designer, coding a game, while someone else plays a game.

It’s not very often you see stop motion animation puppeteering these days, let alone in a video game. That animation style on its own gives Takeshi and Hiroshi, from Oink Games, a distinct look in a day and age where it can be hard for games to stand out on the Nintendo eShop. That said, looks aren’t everything and while the use of a charming filming technique and adorable writing do deliver, there are some slip ups in the gameplay that hold back this experience from being something truly special.

Takeshi and Hiroshi are siblings that share a strong brotherly bond. Takeshi is in middle school and has a keen interest in designing video games, and his younger brother Hiroshi is in elementary school, loves to play video games, and suffers from asthma, which leaves him hospitalized. Takeshi wants to encourage his younger brother and has him play his work-in-progress game, as he somehow manages to code it in real time. The story is very simple, but pleasant all around. The writing draws strong inspiration from traditional anime storytelling language, and the dialogue of the characters is endearing. My two and half hours with these characters wasn’t something that I expected to leave a lasting impression on me, but I did enjoy the story overall, even if it was pretty brisk.

So what is the gameplay exactly? Whenever Hiroshi starts playing his brother’s game, this is when the player steps in. Takeshi’s game, “Mighty Warrior,” is an incredibly barebones and traditional RPG combat system, where you fight enemies in several rounds. It has a twist though. Rather than you encountering enemies, you actually pick from a pool of enemies to fight, each ranging in difficulty and ability. This is supposed to mimic Takeshi “coding” in enemies for his brother to fight in real time. The objective is to raise Hiroshi’s “joy” meter to a certain point depending on the level. To do this, you have to balance the types of enemies that Hiroshi fights. The harder the enemies, the more stressed he becomes. If Hiroshi is able to achieve victory, then the numeric value in the stress meter is added to the joy meter. If you send easy enemies, Hiroshi will be disappointed with how easy the game is and lose joy. If he successfully defeats a collection of hard enemies in a stressful situation, then he becomes more joyful. You only are given five rounds to strategically pick a line of ordered enemies for Hiroshi to fight. It’s a clever mechanic, but it is extremely limiting, to the point where success often felt random. There were instances where I was sending groups of enemies, that would result in a huge increase in joy, and then when trying to replicate my strategy, I would get wiped out completely.

In a way, it’s like playing a game of cards: you have to deal with the deck and hands you are given. But you don’t have many choices. You can use a dodge move and even deal triple damage once per round after sending out enemies, but otherwise you’re a bit of a sitting duck. All of this adds up to a very inconsistent experience. Some fights took me over a half hour to get through via trial and error and luck, whereas the last chapter took just over ten minutes. It’s a flawed system that blemishes and overshadows the good. There’s one mini game called “500m Zombie Escape” that is largely optional, which actually outshines “Mighty Warrior.” And narratively, this actually makes sense. However, it doesn’t excuse the issues with “Mighty Warrior.” Essentially, “Zombie Escape” is an endless runner in 3D with an isometric view, where you are an endlessly pivoting character. You just press A to take one step forward while continuously spinning. The goal is to get as far as possible whilst surmounting the obstacles in your path, and it’s more a game of skill with learning the controls than anything.

Like I mentioned before, the visuals of Takeshi and Hiroshi are what stand out the most. The puppeteering is very impressive, and while plenty of shots are reused, it never felt like overkill. The puppets are detailed but stylized so they aren’t realistic, and the designs of the characters stand out. The world these characters inhabit is interesting, too, because each shot has that world in a monochromatic, minimalist shot. The school is yellow, and is filled with yellow items, same with the purple hospital or the blue bedroom. It’s an interesting style choice that draws a little inspiration from a Rankin/Bass styled production. “Mighty Warrior” abandons the real puppets and opts instead for the now-common illustrated puppet animation. It’s not bad, but the style change is worth noting so that you don’t expect the entire game to be in stop motion.The music doesn’t stand out as much, but it’s definitely not trying to. It is very much supplemental to the experience, mostly being a mix of bells, a marimba, and occasionally a synthesizer. I won’t be humming any of these tunes later, but they work well in conjunction with the art style and animation. The one thing that did stick out like a sore thumb was that every so often, I noticed that some of the sound effects were considerably louder than anything else. There’s definitely a sound mixing issue present. Takeshi eating a donut, or the knight Hiroshi plays as will complete actions that were really distracting in how loud they were. You can turn off sound effects, but there isn’t an adjuster. It’s by no means a game breaker, but it has a noticeable effect on the experience.

At the end of the day, though, I can say I enjoyed my short time with Takeshi and Hiroshi. It has some gameplay issues, and while the luck element of the barebones combat does make the experience drag at points, the novelty of the idea in the combat, as well as the impressive visuals in the story components are appreciated.

TalkBack / We Are Doomed (Switch) Review
« on: August 13, 2020, 05:00:00 AM »

Why are we doomed? I don’t know why. That’s just the name of the game.

Let’s face it: a ton of shoot-em-ups are available on the Switch. Picking one to play can be hard, as they all have different quirks to try and grab your attention. So what does the latest shoot-’em-up, We Are Doomed, do differently? Frankly, not much. And that’s not a bad thing by any means. We Are Doomed is by and large a standard twin-stick-shooter affair with dazzling visuals and that classic arcade addiction. I didn’t want to put the controller down.

In terms of context, not much is there to grab on to. You take control of a small, spiky-shape character and use one giant laser to fry various geometrical enemies that are zooming all around the small area, whilst avoiding any of them or their attacks, and trying to collect enemy drops to increase your score. Like many titles before it, scoring the high score is the real goal of the game, and thankfully, the inclusion of a leaderboard for both world scores and scores on your friend list is available from the get-go. There is no shop to spend anything on or abilities to buff up yourself. It’s simply a start-and-stop experience. Once you run out of health, you’re out and have to start over. There are only two modes, both of which offer a similar experience: Wave Mode and Endless Mode. I didn’t see an option for multiplayer, which is a bummer exclusion. In the mode where you fight waves of enemies, you can restart at different checkpoints that are unlocked after completing every tenth wave. Sure, you lose your score, but it makes it easy to go back and try to get more hands on time with the harder waves. HD Rumble is used lightly in this regard. When you take the last hit you can afford, you feel it in the controller, and it’s devastating.

Instead of having an array of bullets being shot from your character, you are equipped with a trusty laser that is always beaming. As is the case of the twin-stick shooter genre, you navigate with one stick, and aim with the other. It can get tricky at times because of the lack of the ability to aim and shoot, instead having to navigate through swarms of enemies and have the laser on enemies long enough to destroy them. Because the laser isin’t screen wide, you always have enemies within a dangerous distance of your ship, which creates a satisfying amount of tension and challenge. Difficulty wise, it’s definitely not a complete walk in the park, but you can spend several minutes on a single run and feel every sting when you lose a pip of health...and there isn’t a way to recover any. This feels intentional to the game design. That said, I still managed to see all 30 waves in one afternoon. Each wave is handcrafted, so you can keep coming back and expecting to a degree what is in store for you. Enemies are designed with unique abilities that intentionally try to get around your laser and mess you up. For example, an endless chain will spawn around the perimeter of the arena or on set tracks. Some enemies can fire back at you, while others only move diagonally or take multiple hits. Once you’ve got a feel for the various enemies, you can also take on endless mode where just about anything goes, and it’s ultimately a survival test.

A major element that We Are Doomed has going for it is it’s direction in the visual department. It goes for a minimalist color look, with only a small palette for each thing on screen, but dances over into being cluttered with just how much is on screen. I really enjoyed watching all of the effects, but at the cost of in the early moments it was a little over stimulating and distracting. I got used to it quickly, however the initial moments of trying to survive, look at everything happening, and play the game itself were overwhelming. Unfortunately, I did not see any accessibility options for those who may find the visual effects too much, or may struggle with the color schemes if color blindness is an issue. That said, there is a remarkable amount of polish here. It’s clear some serious effort was put into making the visuals, and also juxtaposing them to the gameplay. For example, the background is usually the same magenta to orange gradient, but will shift and create a green gradient that hones in on where the enemy drops are. Contrasting lines also show up where enemies are about to spawn, and occasionally they would spawn on top of my character which felt unfair, it wasn’t anything that ruined the experience for me. Handheld mode too showcases the very nice visuals, with everything running smoothly.I will say, I preferred playing in docked mode with a Pro Controller just because of the Joy-Con joysticks not feeling as great to use. That said I landed my high score in handheld mode so it’s not like it’s that much worse.

We Are Doomed is a great, easy-going experience that can easily be picked up and played at any time. It boasts some beautiful visuals, feels smooth and polished, and while it doesn’t offer too much in terms of innovation for the genre, what it is doing is great. There isn’t a lot of content to explore, but what is here is a lot of fun. Check it out if you are interested.

TalkBack / Treasure, Max Hearts, Ninja Toads, The Ringer Guide
« on: July 22, 2020, 08:15:21 AM »

Puzzled on where certain things are or what to do next? We got you.

Paper Mario: The Origami King is filled to the brim with secrets, collectibles, and all sorts of doodads to find. This guide is here for anyone who is stumped and needs some help finding any of the collectible treasures, the Ninja Toads in the Ninja Attraction for Treasure No. 51, all the MAX UP Hearts, and the solutions to The Ringer levels in the Battle Lab. Best of luck!


  • 00:04 Treasures 1-10
  • 7:46 Treasures 11-20
  • 12:43 Treasures 21-30
  • 14:45 Treasures 31-40
  • 17:07 Treasures 41-50
  • 20:48 Treasure 51 and all the Ninja Toads
  • 27:37 Treasures 52-60
  • 29:39 Treasures 61-70
  • 31:20 Treasures 71-80
  • 33:18 Treasures 81-90
  • 42:54 Treasures 91-100
  • 44:55 Treasures 101-110
  • 47:14 Treasures 111-120
  • 48:46 MAX UP Hearts
  • 54:05 The Ringer: Level 1
  • 57:25 The Ringer: Level 2
  • 1:00:00 The Ringer: Level 3

TalkBack / Nintendo Direct Mini: Partner Showcase Announced
« on: July 19, 2020, 05:20:00 PM »

Only focusing on previously-announced titles.

The next Nintendo Direct Mini has been announced via Twitter, with the focus being a "Partner Showcase" on previously announced titles. It debuts at 7:00 am PT / 10:00 am EST tomorrow. The Japanese Twitter account has announced it being roughly 10 minutes in length.


Sometimes you should walk instead of driving.

If you’re playing Paper Mario: The Origami King right now, and are hoping to complete the game in its entirety, then I’m here today to tell you to make sure you don’t miss the Shoe Goomba in Breezy Tunnel. This is very important. To complete the game, one of the challenges is to fight at least one of every enemy in every region of the world. That doesn’t mean fighting just one Goomba, it means fighting at least one Goomba in each region a Goomba is available to be fought. One particularly elusive enemy is the Shoe Goomba which I could only find in Breezy Tunnel. I suspect most players will miss this enemy because upon entering this area, you are provided with the Shoe Car, which can pulverize enemies in the overworld. This means most players will likely drive over one of the enemies in Breezy Tunnel that contains a Shoe Goomba to be fought, never to see this mythical shoe-clad minion again. Sometimes it pays to walk instead of driving! But that Yoshi mileage though…

TalkBack / The Future of Paper Mario (ft. André from Gamexplain)
« on: July 19, 2020, 05:14:00 AM »

Is the Nintendo Machine out of paper?

With Paper Mario: The Origami King now unfolding onto the Nintendo Switch, NWR's reviewer: Xander Morningstar and founder of Gamexplain, André Segers, sit down to talk about the series history, how Paper Mario: The Origami King stacks up to it's predecessors, and where the series can go from here. Check out their discussions over at GameXplain as well!

Post-Review Discussion at GameXplain:


Is it Toad-ally worth it in the end?

Paper Mario: The Origami King has a lot of collectibles! What happens if you find everything and complete the Musée Champignon?


  • 00:06 Completing the Musée Champignon
  • 1:35 Touring the Concept Art Gallery
  • 14:16 Touring the Origami Toad Gallery
  • 19:59 Touring the Treasure Gallery
  • 30:06 Looking at the Trophies
  • 32:00 Touring the Origami Character Gallery
  • 42:48 Touring the Sound Gallery
  • 48:48 Credits with 100% Completion
  • 52:54 Post-Credits Scene

Apparently, the final image of Mario and Peach in the credits can have Toads holding banners. If you avoid getting a game over, it includes a heart banner. If you avoid using accessories, it also includes a fist banner. Strange that these are included, as the game actively reminds you to use your weapons and accessories, and the quicktime events make it easy to get a game over.

John, you have a great sense of humor. This, and the Xenoblade grass video.

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 200 - The Big 2-0-0
« on: July 15, 2020, 02:25:43 PM »
Congratulations gentlemen on 200 big ones. Thank you for having me on, and I can't wait for 200 more.

TalkBack / Re: Paper Mario: The Origami King (Switch) Review
« on: July 15, 2020, 02:11:47 PM »
Great review very fair and all your positives outweigh the negatives for me. One question - you mention that you really liked collecting everything. I know that was appealing to me in Color Splash but I recall reading about say you filled all the colour in a world but someone would suck up the colour and you would have to return - making 100% pretty annoying and difficult. Is this the same? Is there anything that un-does your progress?

Thanks for reading! I can confirm there is no mechanic that undoes any progress like that. Once you have the collectible, it's yours. Once you have restored a hole, it is patched up for good.

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