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  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)
    After a couple dozen hours of playtest, goldfishing, and adventures into color splashes the last few days, I've developed a new baseline for the deck. I've updated the OP decklist, and here are my comments.

    Turns out new Ugin doesn't help the deck all that much, and really only does the ramping the Oblivion Sower can, but a lot more awkwardly since I can't ramp plain colorless as well as I can Eldrazi. Upped the number of new Karns to compensate for this. Not sure what the right number is, but I hardly saw it at 2x, so now to try 3x.

    Got the landbase situated pretty nicely, although I miss the inclusion of the ~2 Ghost Quarters. Adding Zhalfirin Void definitely helped clean up the topdecks.

    The single of Warping Wail in the MB may end up being an All Is Dust, in which case I would do a 2-of Wail in the side.

    Matter Reshaper helped fill the gaps in the curve, as well as provide a little bit of CA.

    Cindervines in now in place of a few instants. The fact that I can put this down before it's needed really frees up the mana turn-by-turn. I'll have to see if the split cost ends up hurting too much to run it with the current landbase.

    The 1-of Phyrexian Metamorph has been awesome so far! Copying my own Thought-Knot Seer is great, and even the larger Eldrazi (unfortunately you lose the cast triggers) has worked out well. The best part is copying an opponent's key permanents (with the help of LMC), like planeswalkers. Since Metamorph is entering the battlefield as a copy of that planeswalker, it still starts at the appropriate level of loyalty counters. This has been huge when copying a Lili, Karnfather, regular Ugin, etc..

    Still have a lot of playtesting and adjustments to do. I would really like to get a little more LD into the deck, even if it's just getting the GC's back (might drop some Voids), but so far it is very fun, and the most I have ever been able to use LMC.

    Let me know if you have any thoughts!
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Doran Formation
    I run 3 Doran and 3 Assault Formation, and I will be replacing 1-2 of the Assault Formations for the new Huatli.

    My reasoning is this - I have used the creature pump ability of Formation a half dozen times in hundreds of games. I run BBE so cascading into a second Formation, or even hitting the first one when I already have Doran out really sucks. With Huatli, instantly healing for 3-5, and being able to do it again next turn is awesome. It doesn't matter that it costs 1 more than Formation, as Formation should only be part of your backup to Doran and not an essential part of your curve. The only other way to get consistent Game 1 lifegain in a deck like this, without diluting the creature base, is with Knight of Autumn. On top of that, having 3 ways to produce essentially the same effect means it is harder to keep you off of it. A [[Meddling Mage]] naming Doran or Formation with a Huatli or two in the deck means you aren't screwed.

    As for the Grazer, that spoiler was very exciting to me. A 3/3 with Reach that can drop another dual or tri-land and cost G is fantastic. I don't know about you guys, but I run between 4-6 manadorks, and when they get bolted or Gut Shotted or whatever and it really sets me back. The fact that this can come out on T1, ready to block, and the ramp it creates doesn't die when it does, is just fantastic. My nut draws are normally 20 damage on T3, and this allows 3 damage on T2 followed by 22 on T3. Outside of the nut draws, it is just a bigger butt with a more consistent form of ramp.

    I'm not sure of the effect it will have on my landbase (you need more since it isn't a traditional dork), but I will be running a playset and then working back from there.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)

    Ugin, the Unspeakable

    Colorless spells you cast cost 2 less.

    +1: Exile the top card of your library face down and look at it. Create a 2/2 colorless Spirit creature token. When that token leaves the battlefield, put the exiled card in your hand.

    -3: Destroy target permanent that is one or more colors.

    Loyalty: 4

    This Ugin is very fun with this deck. Reducing the cost of LMC to 0, along with helping ramp to bigger creatures. Definitely going to try out a few builds with two or more of him.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)
    Originally I wanted to go Aura based ramp like that, but I haven't been able to find a consistent land base that had enough forests to support it and still make colorless. If I could, I think I would run that and the Temples, and not have any mana dorks, or just Arbor Elf.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)
    A lot of the effectiveness of LMC with Karn hinges on how the game leading up to the Karn has gone, and if LMC is already on the field.

    In situations where LMC is already out:

    How many lands is the opponent at? More than 4? Tapping LMC each turn to kill a land is going to be too slow for us to catch back up, unless we happen to have another LMC and more removal in hand. Less than 4 lands? LMC LD is probably enough to start wearing them down and keep them off their higher CMC spells, depending on the deck.

    In situations where LMC isn't already out:

    I can't see where I wouldn't try to silver bullet with Karn, most likely for Lattice if I have the mana the next turn to play it, or enough pressure otherwise that it can wait. A few people had the idea of running 3 LMC main and 1 in the side so it is easier to get to and so you don't topdeck them when you don't want to as often, with the only drawback being you draw into it naturally more slowly. I'm not sure how I feel about that. Presuming we were running that though, there are instances where I would tutor for LMC, but that's only if I have artifact removal in hand and I need something gone ASAP.

    All of this doesn't matter though because the Lattice is a 1-of in the side that doesn't have to be built around, so it is just a hard lock that we can grab when we want. If you Simian'd to get 4 mana to cast Karn and now you're back down to just the 3 lands, you wouldn't grab a 6 mana spell from the side that you can't cast for 3 more turns at best, you'd grab the next best thing that can help you next turn, or now.

    If I had to choose between turning off all an opponents lands, including new ones that come in after that point, or being able to consistently destroy them each turn, I would pick turning them all off every single time. But I don't have to choose, so it's a moot point.

    On to the rest of the deck...

    So this is my...14thish... build of an LMC deck, and the thing I noticed is that in order to make running a playset of LMC not a liability (and it is a liability) is that you have to be able out value your opponents with mana investment, because you can't outvalue them by trading a card for a card. This is why I have Abrades instead of bolts. Without I would say at least 10 pieces of artifact removal, not including Karn, LMC is a dead card too often. Abrade alongside Ancient Grudge is the most removal package in the fewest amount of cards that I think is possible for a deck like this. 3 of each is 9 pieces of artifact removal and 3 creature bolts in 6 cards. Add to that a Splinter, Shrapnel Blast (another way to reduce the LMC liability), and the Phyrexian Metamorph that works both with or without LMC, and suddenly we have a bit of value.

    I've tried Tron lands, but even in Monogreen it requires sixteen (not including Stirrings!) fetch effects to be consistent and generate all that infamous Tron value. This leaves far too few slots for removal to reduce the LMC liability.

    I did an Eldrazi shell because not only does it allow a lot of ramp, it brings early game disruption to a deck that doesn't otherwise have it. T2 LMC into T3 Ancient Grudge isn't a strong enough play, even if you can repeat it every turn after. T1/T2 TKS into T3 Karn/LMC+removal is a much better start.

    The reason for Kozilek's Return is to fight aggro, and the people that have the ability to create better boardstates before we can. Because of Devoid it can be grabbed with Stirrings. The fact that World Breaker can recast it for free feels like flipping a Thing in the Ice prior to attacking. It's great. Because of the number of Kozilek's (2-3 depending on the number of All is Dust), I also wanted some T1 ramp that wouldn't die to it, and in comes the Blisterpods. I'm still not sure if that is the correct way to go over the same amount of Birds, but in my limited playtesting of it the pace of the deck was much improved.'

    Blight Herder I'm not completely sold on yet, but it has playtested pretty well. The deck exiles a lot of cards, and some decks naturally exile their own cards, so bringing two back in to get 3 extra mana is great, and it being a 4/5 at worst isn't that bad either. I've cast these on T3 pretty consistently. He may require a Relic or two in the main, but that wouldn't be too bad given the number of GY based decks I run into.

    Oblivion Sower has been great, although I'm not sure what the right number of them is. Let's say I cast Crumble to Dust (can also hit with Stirrings) once, prior to casting Sower, and Sower only hits 1 land with his cast trigger. That means I can grab that land, and all the lands exiled with Crumble to Dust and put them into play untapped. I could immediately cast a Karn for that! Sower has just been great, it's just a matter of smoothing out the curve a little more.

    World Breaker has been great as well, and the fact that it can hit artifacts naturally, or even kill say a potential blocker with the help of LMC, it is just all around a fun thing to play. The fact that it is cast triggers as well, and I can sac one of my (fairly) numerous lands to get it back from the GY is just icing on the cake.

    I tried the idea of Darksteel Citadels and Boom/Bust's, and I think it's cool that I could put a Citadel in the side and being able to grab it with Karn for guaranteed land drops, but I am just not feeling the impact of Blood Moon at the moment, at least in my meta. This is coming off of 6 months with my Izzet LMC deck in a Blue Moon shell where I ended up moving all 3 Blood Moons to the side because the G1 impact had been so low, and I only brought the moons in every 10 games or so. I think if G/R had access to their own Flagstones of Trokair, I would be much more apt to run Boom/Bust, but if I did it now it would honestly be a 1-of for the sake of the Bust, which I think Karn/Lattice just does the job of better since it isn't symmetrical.

    All in all I think LMC is something fun that lets me do cheeky sh*t while I set up for a Karn lock or a stompy beatdown, and that's exactly what I want out of it.

    This is still the first week or so in the development of this version of the deck, so it could still change quite a bit as I playtest, find new cards, and with the release of Modern Horizons, but as far as my many LMC decks have gone, this Eldrazi one is the first one that I feel like could actually hang with the big boys, instead of crapping all over Affinity and then rolling over and playing dead on G2 for every other deck.

    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)
    Updated the main deck after a bunch of feedback and playtesting today.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)
    Yeah I'm trying to make half or a little more of my sideboard a wishboard for Karn. May need to bump him up to a 3-of to compensate though.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ponzi Scheme (Eldrazi-Ponza)
    Hello everyone!

    So I've been working on a Liquimetal Coating deck for a long time, and I've developed my best version yet thanks to a total revamp and the new..

    You can also check the deck out on TappedOut if you like: Ponzi Scheme [Eldrazi-Ponza]

    This deck is finally ticking all the boxes I wanted out of the previous revisions of the deck, which is a focus on permanent destruction and resource denial, where Liquimetal Coating isn't just an afterthought and can actually enable some pretty strong turns.

    I took a lot of inspiration from Colorless Eldrazi Stompy, R/G Eldrazi, and Ponza, as well as my Izzet variation. This is my second pass at an Eldrazi/Ponza variant after trying 10+ versions and just as many color combinations over the last year and a half.

    Let me know what you think, and if you have any ideas or critiques!
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Colorless Eldrazi Stompy
    Thoughts about the new mulligan rule being tested at MC in London?

    If something like that did actually make it to Modern, what could the deck cut/add? Does it remain relatively unchanged and simply just play better? It seems like the deck would get a lot more consistency in the early games, being able to get to Temple and Chalice easier, and Game 2 getting to sideboard cards easier.

    It was mentioned that new bans would be discussed if the new mulligan rule came into effect, with a lot of people guessing at Leylines being the first to ban, and some even mentioning Serum Powder.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Ib Halfheart, Goblin Sac-tician
    Ib Halfheart, Goblin Sac-tician

    Hello everyone! This deck is my pride and joy, and after about two years working on it and only keeping track of the progress on TappedOut, I wanted to add it here to show more people why Ib should not be a commander that you don't take seriously.

    You can find a detailed primer, an extensive comment history, as well as individual card explanations here:

    Ib Halfheart, Goblin Sac-tician (TappedOut Primer)

    I will be slowly converting the information from that primer to another one in this thread, so I can eventually apply for a [Primer] tag on this deck.

    Here is the most recent decklist:

    Ib Halfheart, Goblin Sac-tician (Avg. CMC: 2.76)Magic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    1x Ib Halfheart, Goblin Tactician

    Creatures (24)
    1x Beetleback Chief
    1x Burnished Hart
    1x Dark-Dweller Oracle
    1x Goblin Assassin
    1x Goblin Chieftain
    1x Goblin Chirurgeon
    1x Goblin Goliath
    1x Goblin King
    1x Goblin Lackey
    1x Goblin Matron
    1x Goblin Recruiter
    1x Goblin Sledder
    1x Goblin Trashmaster
    1x Goblin Warchief
    1x Goblin Welder
    1x Grenzo, Havoc Raiser
    1x Imperial Recruiter
    1x Krenko, Mob Boss
    1x Magus of the Moon
    1x Moggcatcher
    1x Purphoros, God of the Forge
    1x Skirk Prospector
    1x Soul-Scar Mage
    1x Warren Instigator

    Artifacts (14)
    1x Crucible of Worlds
    1x Illusionist's Bracers
    1x Lightning Greaves
    1x Mana Crypt
    1x Memory Jar
    1x Nemesis Mask
    1x Phyrexian Altar
    1x Rings of Brighthearth
    1x Sensei's Divining Top
    1x Skullclamp
    1x Sol Ring
    1x Surveyor's Scope
    1x Swiftfoot Boots
    1x Sword of the Animist

    Enchantments (11)
    1x Blood Moon
    1x Experimental Frenzy
    1x Fervor
    1x Glacial Crevasses
    1x Goblin Bombardment
    1x Impact Tremors
    1x Outpost Siege
    1x Raid Bombardment
    1x Repercussion
    1x Shared Animosity
    1x Stolen Strategy

    Instants (6)
    1x Chaos Warp
    1x Commune with Lava
    1x Fork
    1x Massive Raid
    1x Price of Progress
    1x Reverberate

    Sorceries (10)
    1x Acidic Soil
    1x Blasphemous Act
    1x Disrupt Decorum
    1x Faithless Looting
    1x Goblin War Strike
    1x Insult
    1x Light Up the Stage
    1x Mizzium Mortars
    1x Mogg Infestation
    1x Vandalblast

    Planeswalker (1)
    1x Daretti, Scrap Savant

    Lands (33)
    1x Ancient Tomb
    1x Bloodstained Mire
    1x Boseiju, Who Shelters All
    1x Buried Ruin
    1x Cavern of Souls
    1x Great Furnace
    1x Isolated Watchtower
    1x Madblind Mountain
    1x Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx
    23x Snow-Covered Mountain
    1x Wooded Foothills

    There are a ton of unique interactions, and odd card inclusions, so if you have any questions, suggestions, or criticisms, please comment!

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Doran Formation
    My meta is probably 75% popular tier decks, and the rest home brews. I frequently see Humans, Tron, Spirits, Burn, 12 Bolt, Faeries, KCI, Dredge, lots of Arclight, UR control, UW control, monoblack devotion, etc...

    I should clarify that the Harbinger to Dork, Dork to Harbinger, or any other Evolution line like that are definitely not something I shoot for doing in a standard game, it's just that it's there when I need it. I would say for every time I Evolution like that, I've Evolution'd for Doran or Tetsuko 25 times. Trading for a dork or Harbinger is also more for mid to long range games where I am setting up casting two or three cards on Turn 8 or something. I don't keep opening hands unless they have the ability to play Doran on T3 or Assault Formation with an attack ready on Turn 3. I almost only sac when I know an alpha strike can win me the game, otherwise I hold off until later or don't play it at all. That's why I run Evolution as a 2x in the MB, as I never want to see 2 of them (unless it's G2 and I sideboarded in a specific hate creature), and I may not even cast the first if it isn't advantageous.

    I would say that my meta is pretty hostile to Doran as well, and Stompy, and all the other kind of fair decks, which is another reason I added the red. We can stick huge threats, and with 22+ creatures we can stick them regularly, but we are still trying to race a field that is almost always going to be faster than us, but probably not as regularly hard hitting. If every turn I chump block and lose a creature, I never have a chance to put pressure on. Having a playset of bolts, 2+ trophies, and a pulse MB help to slow down the faster or more interactive opponents, making the playing field a little more even. Before I had red I was relying on 2x Abrupt Decays and maybe a Maelstrom MB (most people left 1-2 of these in the side) and that lack of interaction always felt like I could only ever actually put up a fight if it was another fair deck. For what I lost by adding red (creature density), I think I gained in interaction and midgame consistency. I don't have Tower Defense anymore for the same reason. Those flare ups of 20+ damage out of no where were so much fun, but the set up and luck they required were much harder when I had nothing but creatures to really slow down opponents.

    GBx decks also used to give me a lot of trouble, but the Leylines and bolts probably helped the most with that. Almost all the discard targets you, so turning that off on T0 is really nice. Bolts take out Oozes, Bobs, BBE, turn chump blocks into the death of a Goyf, etc.. Rhox is also a good add from the board to help block and negate the damage dealt in the first few turns.

    I haven't actually drawn Rhythm yet so I can't say whether or not it works how I am hoping. The best line we can normally get is Doran T2, attacking T3. In the same situation Rhythm can go down T2 (with the help of Birds), and then you still get an uncounterable Doran with haste on T3. If they counter your Rhythm or remove it on T2, that's one less counterspell for Doran, so I don't feel too bad. It also allows for a little bit less reliance on Doran, as you can just start giving creatures counters as they come into the battlefield and soon your Harbinger doesn't die to bolt, and your birds and hierarchs don't die to Gut Shots and low level sweepers. If it doesn't end up working I will probably trade it out for some extra removal, or a different form of protection if I can find it. Lightning Greaves was okay as a 2-of, but still so wonky.

    I'd really suggest giving my list a try. It's so different from the more standard Doran decks that it is hard to see just how well it plays, but it also fits the playstyle I really like so I am biased. I've had a long time now to get used to playing it differently because of the 4 colors, BBE, balancing a T1 creature vs a T1 bolt, etc..

    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Doran Formation
    Yeah I've been very impressed with how well Eldritch Evolution has worked out. The worst thing that happens is it gets countered so you lose the Evolution and the sac'd creature, but it is easy enough to time around that for the most part, especially as often as decks tap out every turn these days. If I have enough mana I'll even use it as counterspell bait so I can hardcast the card I really want to, or vice versa.

    I carry my 3rd Evolution in the sideboard with the idea that, when I bring any sideboard creature I bring in the 3rd Evolution as well. This saves about 6 slots of not having to run 2 of something just to maybe draw it, where with the 3x Evolution it's now like I'm basically running a playset of that creature.

    Game 1 I most often Evolution for Tetsuko (probably 90% of the time) but being able to set up a bunch of 0/X creatures and have very little board presence, and then trading a dork for a Doran is amazing. I've had a boardstate multiple times of: a Bird, a Harbinger, and a Spellskite (or 2nd Harbinger, Tetsuko, another dork, anything really) with a Mardu Ascendancy out. I traded the bird for Doran, which turned a max swing of 3 (three 1/1 tokens from Mardu) on that turn into a swing of 21 (Harbinger for 3, Spellskite for 4, 2 tokens for 2, sac Mardu for another 12) very much to the surprise of my opponent.

    I'll also go from a Harbinger to a dork to get my colors for my next turn, and the reverse to fix my lands for future turns. Even a Harbinger to a Harbinger to fetch another land or get a backup Doran as my next draw if I think removal for one on the battlefield is coming. It is a really versatile spell.

    Rhox Faithmender has always been a pet card for this deck simply because the huge swing of effectiveness it has when it goes into a Doran deck. It goes from a kind of meh creature that costs a lot to an anti-burn badass that quite literally only has to block or attack one time to turn the entire game in my favor. It used to be in my mainboard as a 2-of, but for the sake of Game 1 speed I moved it to the side. I have no qualms whatsoever with saccing a Spellskite to get Rhox against a burn deck, or hardcasting it. Saying to an opponent "Swing for 5, gain 10 life" feels so, so good, haha. Rhox along with the Leylines turned my burn matchup from what felt like unwinnable to probably slightly in my favor. He'll also go toe-to-toe with Gurmags, just about every Goyf, and most any other Modern creature, and if they happen to be a lot bigger than he is he just becomes the world's best chump blocker.

    The other really cheeky card I run off and on is Alesha, Who Smiles at Death. Being able to pull a Doran out of the GY tapped and attacking is really, really fun. Trying to fit her back into the 75 as we speak.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Doran Formation
    Just found this thread, and it's nice to see other people still talking about Doran in Modern. Here is the latest revision of the deck I've been running for the last year and a half or so.

    I'm rebuilding the sideboard, but currently the core is:

    Testing out 1 each of Kataki, War's Wage,Knight of Autumn, and Lavinia, Azorius Renegade for the sideboard as well. Really only feel like I am missing some good sweepers, but as much as I like Slaughter the Strong it doesn't hit the creatures I am most worried about, and Anger of the Gods hits too many of my utility creatures, but I can cascade into it. Currently leaning heavily on Ensnaring Bridge for that role.

    I played Abzan Doran originally, but it was slower and really missing pressure and interaction in vital spots.

    After adding Red the deck really came alive, and I've been tweaking that for the last year or so.

    Eldritch Evolution has been fantastic, and has allowed me to run one-of's of really stellar creatures like Tetsuko Umezawa, Fugitive, Gaddock Teeg, and Rhox Faithmender that I never really want to draw a second copy of.

    Bloodbraid Elf has been very strong, and I will never switch back. It's completely changed the competitiveness of the deck.

    I ran 4x Birds of Paradise for a very long time, but recently decided that I wanted to speed the deck up a bit more and smooth out the consistency, so I added 2x Noble Hierarch and 2x Courser of Kruphix and the pressure has definitely improved. During this same time I dropped 2x Spellskite to the side, and dropped a basic Forest (this may get rebalanced because of the popularity of Path and Ass Trophy).

    Mardu Ascendancy allows the deck to go wide and tall at the same time, as well as filling the slot that Tower Defense used to, while being a better Cascade target.

    Rhythm of the Wild is obviously a new addition that brings a lot to the deck. While it doesn't affect the fastest games, it can have a pretty profound impact on the mid to long duration ones, and doesn't slow down any of the non-dork-enabled combos.

    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Brewing Persistent Petitioners
    Here is the very rough and very janky T3 combo version that my friend and I have been working on:

    It would have a transformational sideboard with some form of mono-green stompy, as casting Carnage Tyrant is easy with all the mana generation, and you can only really take the the Thrumming Stones and 11 Persistent Petitioners out. It would be way too hard to protect the combo Game 2.

    T1: Forest, cast Utopia Sprawl
    T2: Land,cast Arbor Elf, cast Incubation Druid
    T3: Land, tap Utopia Sprawl'd Forest (2 mana floating),Arbor Elf targetting same Forest, tap it again (4 mana floating), tap Incubation Druid (5 mana floating), cast Burst of Strength targetting Incubation Druid (4 mana floating), tap Incubation Druid for 3 (7 mana floating), cast Thrumming Stone (2 mana floating), cast Persistent Petitioners, ripple and hopefully hit 16 total Petitioners. (2 lands still untapped, maybe for a counterspell(s)?)

    Archive Traps definitely help speed it up, and also means you only have to hit 12 Petitioners, but there is also enough redundancy to try again T4 for another big mill if you don't hit it the first time. The thing that is really left to figure out is whether 18 Petitioners is enough.

    Let me know what you think!

    Edit: I just realized with 2x Dramatic Reversals you could hardcast Emrakul, the Aeons Torn, or for 9 you entwine Tooth and Nail, and search for Xenagos, God of Revels and Emrakul. That would be fun sideboard tech.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • posted a message on Argent Moon (U/R Liquimetal Control)
    Well I've been working on the deck a lot the last two months, and I made a lot of changes. I've brought it to FNM twice now, and the latest version did very well. I've tweaked it again since then, and I am very happy with where it is sitting.

    Switching to be more proactive and dropping all the mainboard counterspells had a huge impact on the speed, resiliency, and fun of the deck. It is running pretty smoothly now, and I'm down to tweaking just 2-4 cards in the MB and SB to find what I like the most.

    Let me know what you think!
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
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