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Personally I found the episode lame, in every way.Even though I found it was better than episode 1, it remains very much below what Arenanet is capable of.. (It’s starting to become one of the worst Living History of the game).Only the end with Aureene and her lair was interesting, I think.I hope that its lair will become something similar and better than the Refuge du Soleil, and that visually the area will evolve and propose interesting things. (visual and auditory evolutions: aurora borealis, crystallizations, pnj, etc.).

I cross my fingers on this, possibly that it serves us to reach the depths next to the station (which leads to the depths with Quora Sum, Primordius and company).Otherwise I also noticed and it’s a shame that they keep the characters too far away (Jhavi isn’t much use right now, Braham as a werewolf it was just not great, Marjory I didn’t understand why she was excluded, Kasmeer have no idea where she is or why she is absent, Taïmi have a little idea of why, With Gorrik (I hope we see her again), Rytlock becomes complicated with his wife and son carts, and the others are either annoying or useless.In terms of content it is the abyssal void, and only recycling, the map is very pretty (artistically as usual, no deception) but at best useless. (And the World Boss, it’s worth a visit, but it’s much less than the other World Boss, it’s mostly a HP bag.I hope that this will improve very quickly from episode 3 !

By the way, beyond that have to a lot of illogical and connection problems between maps (absence of Lore, or in decallage with what had in the first map: example: we no longer hear the voices of Jormag, what is illogical, the storm and the vent of the storm of Jora only concerns the part of "Bjora Marches".).And in addition to this fucked-up episode, it is completely bug (some successes are, including loss of records: weapons collections, jumping puzzle..) and for some other things like the Strike Mission.. (in addition to being practically impossible to do).Only the eye of the North was a real good surprise with Aurène after all. (Seen that scenaristically speaking the episode is as lame as the first, see worse..)Go one positive point to balance, to end the episode in a serene way: the music that are always so superb, music from the Aurene Shrine (Eye of the North).

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I agree

While the last episode was a bit short and the map was fine but not amazing this episode, not only was great by itself but it actually made the content of the previous episode more meaningful.this didn't just extend the map but it also made it so that the meta event at the east side of the map affect the west side of the map.also the story was very nice and I really likes jormag, finally an evil character which communicates properly with us.I have yet to experience the drakkar fight because it was bugged, but I am sure they will fix it.

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@"Ashantara.8731" said:So regression is a preferable state for us long time players?

It's not a regression. And after eight years what sort of bold new MMO methods are you expecting?

Perhaps you should "get real."

I'm so real Quantum Superposition is afraid of me. That's why I said habitual whiners players would be complaining about the exact same things they are now. Because they did.

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I loved the story. It is nice to see Braham growing up. I like the journey he is on.

Also, all the Norn lore is terrific.

Finally, the map is fun to explore. Pairs great with the lore heavy story.

And a big thank you for the Raven Shaman armor. Please give us the others spirits, even as outfits. Take my money please!

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I finished this episode last night and I really enjoyed it. Someone said in a previous post that we weren't the hero any more but after being a God and dragon killer, there isn't any higher position to fill than those. Now we have to help others of our group rise to fulfill their destiny, lead by example and such.

I do feel the part about gaining the respect of the lost spirits and convincing them to give Brahm their powers was cut a bit short. I'd have liked to had an episode that worked on each individual spirit but I know some people would have gotten bored with that and been ready to move on. I think it would be more personal though to cleanse the shrines in a private instance instead of on the open map. Luckily I had come across the ox cleanse earlier (didn't know what it was then) and gotten to participate because when I got there in my story, I got to the shrine long enough to kill a couple of things and it was done.

I do like the graphics with the ice! I kept thinking I might fall through that lake with the tuna event. Such pretty scenery with the frozen falls and such. I don't remember the Thunderhead map being as pretty as this. So the end of the episode made me squeal when I saw that loading screen! I can't wait to see what happens with the pool and if this place gets an upgrade. I'd love the have it where we can slowly add stuff and repair it. I remember that scrying pool from Guild Wars. Such a wonderful treat for us old fans!

As a note from my story: Kyri, my main character from Guild Wars, got lost in the mists when she was a little older and ended up in modern Tyria. She keeps telling these young Tyrians that you can't trust the charr and she wants to know where her stuff is! Not even a cracked mini or a shred of brotherhood cloth armor! She's gonna be in a bad mood for days! :D

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What Ive seen seems to be well done, but, unfortunately, it is over shadowed by the fact that I still haven't seen the centerpiece of the update - the Drakkar fight.

In fact, to the best of my knowledge, no one I know in game has even been able to complete the meta event due to the escort bug. Here's hoping it gets fixed today. Then we can provide actual feedback.

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Pros:

  • strike mission - very nice one
  • story - i enjoyed it

Strikes:

  • nerfing event exp to the ground
  • T3 boreals being still exotic (unless this is gonna be some norn s3 legendary going the exotic->exotic->asc precursor->legendary route) which i doubt
  • bugged Drakkar - anytime i wanted to do it, NPC (Javi?) would just freeze up before reaching the room with wolf shrine that that's that.
  • 3rd Saga realease - still no xpac level content, even not previous seasons level content (no new fractal, raid, gear stat set, game-wide mastery like beetle or skyscale)
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Had me on a minor emotional roller-coaster, this one. In terms of quality.

The story was... all right. I actually like commander stepping down a bit, not being the centrepiece of kitten everything that happens in the room. About time we had our team do something, grow in a visible way. With this, though, I'd wish for a bit more digging into the psyche of the commander. Playing the story as a norn really adds to it (compared with my friend who played sylvari), props to the voice actor!

Thanks for making Braham go through a change, I think it's earned and slow enough to be believable, but the montage of him gaining the powers of the Spirits was rather meh. They seemed way too easily convinced, copy-pasted, almost. Great voice acting, again, it's the lines they were given that broke it. Seemed rushed. A minor thing, but it broke the immersion.

The map is all right (though quite the contrast to the 1st part of Bjora Marches... not complaining, I am having a better time playing in this new part, doesn't make me depressed all the time), but I found myself disappointed at the boss fight. Makes sense story-wise and all to have Drakkar cornered, but the location, going about it and scope itself is underwhelming.

Music, atmosphere and details (the kodan spirits on the ship, for example) are all very nice! Living in a colder climate myself, I applaud on the artistic side of things. There is definitely something captured here, on both sides of the map.

I looooooove Jormag. Please, please, I beg you, on my knees, drag this out. This is by far its strongest side, to be alluring, drag people into traps they make themselves, to go about it slowly, seductively. I wouldn't mind if it remained but a voice, and never actually appeared in flesh, if this level of writing for it continues. It seems very close, and yet very far, teasing and laughing secretively. It seems to be taken from another world, as if separate from everything else until then. Idk if it's about the writers giving it more attention, or if it's just me, but for the love of everything that is holy, you have a very good rising tension in this character. I think blowing it is what I'm most concerned about.

I don't think the story was too short, it was things that were just going on far too quickly, jumping from one thing to the next (that is, same length of story, but dragged out a bit more, could've worked better). Felt a bit like a list of easy chores to be done, and as soon as you are done, you are left a bit dissatisfied. That's why i think Jormag is by far the episode's best part, because it shows what it may lack. The interest that drags out beyond several hours. Even if the tasks were gruelling, I'd rather do more, fight more, in a more demanding fashion, to earn a good reward. Not even in terms of actual rewards (though those might be nice, too), but story-wise.The events were a small taste of variation, but they were completed quickly.In other words: find ways to make it difficult! You have the story to push people forward, decent rewards, and intelligence to make interesting events, so why not pull them all together, so they might play off each other, to create something more demanding AND rewarding?

All in all, it's enjoyable, but too easy and underwhelming in places.

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Story: well written, but a bit short. The pacing of it is classic (Intro instance, map discovery, fight and cliffhanger/surprise Instance) but the formula works. I am still missing concurrent arcs that need to be completed before the resolution but in an episodic delivery of content this is non realistic.Map: different yet goes well with the first half. Drakkar fight is OK but a bit too static for its length. Lore-wise I haven't explored it enough yet but it seems to be on the low side. Sure we experience things like the three lost spirits (which has been the best tribute they could get) but I also like to read things about the mythology of the world (like learning more about the Kodan culture and view of the past and actual events).Masteries: at last, the exp requirements become meaningful again (cf HoT) to get the feeling that the word progression in "vertical progression" has a meaning. I feel like the next days/week of gameplay will not just be collection farm and achievements hunt.Strike: tried briefly... Now we're talking! And they update to the previous ones give the feeling that they can represent challenging content. Too bad these are less deep in lore and narrative than raids though.All in all it seems there will be things to do on this map for a good amount of time. Now taking the bundle "Prologue, Episodes 1 and 2" I think we have something equal or even a bit superior in term of content and quality than Act1 of any expansion... Sure it was delivered within 4 months but it was free.

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So far everything seems good to me. Especially the soundtrack is well done. The OST is probably my favorite thing. I love how the OST becomes better and better with each release. While everyone hates on the story (don't know, maybe because you're too hardcore and like playing "dark souls" mode and insult everyone else who doesn't agree with you) I think it's kinda nice. Yes, it's short but if you look the way how the story telling was at the game's start and how it developed over the years it's quite good. I'm someone who loves the lore of this game and soaks up every information I can get and seeing how far the game has come makes me happy. Also I like the new camera effects that are used now ever since the end sequence of the prologue. My hopes however are that we make use of the HoM again and perhaps use it like we did with the Sunspear Refuge but in a different, more efficient way. The Sun's Refuge was a good start in my opinion.The only thing I'm not happy with is the achievements. The fact that the meta achievement (and emote) is locked behind strike misions (37 are needed of which only like 30 are obtainable without strikes) is truly a bummer as I hate using lfg because no matter what you'll always end up with toxic people or people who stress you. Look, I don't contribute my entire life essence into the game. I still have a real life. Yes, I used to raid and I have experience with it but I just don't want to stress through a game when life itself is already stressful enough. I'm usually someone who gets to complete the meta achievement of each new story update within one or two days without a problem (been among the top 10 players multiple times according to effiency), just for your info.

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I should add, while I did find the oneshot KO at the end a bit strange, the overall scene was really well done!The story instances are, at least for me, a definite plus of this release. Also, the NPC team was well chosen. Not too many characters and everyone was there for a good reason. Jhavi finally got a little more outline, I think I quite like her so far. Braham's development is so great that honestly, I'm very worried about him by now. (Dear ArenaNet writers, you do know there are several ways to end a characters story arc? Not everyone should have to die, please.) Rytlock really gets on my nerves, but he stays consistent and in character (as much as suddenly having a family he suddenly started caring about is in character in the first place...), so that's just a note, no complaint.Still no mention of Laranthir, though. But maybe he is not forgotten, but Pact politics are simply not our focus right now. :)

I'm looking forward to replaying this with a norn PC.

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Story: Very short imho, kodans could have been more important, really fast, doing fishing events some trees to cut and hop let's clear those shrines to directly pass to let's go in the grotto to find the pterodactyl. That kodan in the little settlement has a good voice and nice dialogues acting, too bad the role is so insignificant. The split of the charrs (Cre/Rytlock) at the end is very nice, kinda nice to see that their mind got twisted by drakkar during the fight, the finale is kinda pleasant too, seeing the commander shot: Not that invincible. Still not convinced with Braham. Feel like it doesn't deserve it, imho those spirits speech are right saying he is bad at everything. I kinda wait braham to be corrupted by the corrupted wolf spirit like if it was a trap.

Map: Ton of copy pasta, and that's annoying. You have easily 5x Kills those svanir and destroy the totem. 3x Fishing events. 10x defeat that champion. 3x Shrines: Take that, bring that to the middle. The trailer was promising and I'm kinda disappointed that the boneskinner is only one Poi in the whole map (small in addition). It would have been more judicious to put that at the south-east, joining the other aberrant Forrest. This allows me to make an important point, even the organization of the gw1 version of the map isn't respected. Where is the Haunted homestead? Polymock peak? Sifhalla ruins feels odd too. Dwarven assets are put everywhere even where it's not needed. The haunted homestead is a big structure kinda strange to not have it, could have be perfect for another necromancer+ boneskinner event. The kodans only have a little piece on the map. The map just feels a little empty, there is locations without events. The only part I've definitely liked and appreciated are the zelda dungeon like light puzzles ruins on the other side of the gates. Had a good time, even saw some new assets. (strange animated symbol electric tile) The Wolverine shrine event is cool too, but not that hard. I like those undying boneskinner. Sad they aren't involved in anything else and do nothing apart looking for us. The 3 decos are nice as always, of course I am happy to have them. But raven armor requiring you to do 20x kodas trials when you have nobody to help you is a pain. (see last paragraph about that) The audio is very nice. The appearance of the map is okay, but feels thunderheadish so not in love. I struggled to navigate to find missing light puzzles shrines as example whereas it's easy in east-bjora.

Masteries: The gate mastery is a good thing, and the upgrade to the essences is cool too. But gaining xp is so slow now... I've stacked on me some birthday boosts and got 0 bonuses: 0 bonuses from kills as it happens normally. Some foods I ate did nothing too.

Strikes: Can't say if the new one is nice or not, tried with 9 others peoples and we got killed rapidly, not even reaching 50% health. So maybe we were bad. Who knows. But attacks are popping everywhere and I'm understanding nothing. You have red circle attack from above then meteorite with green circle... It's just like that annoying siren reef fractal! In those case, when those attacks are starting put a tip on the screen: green: attract it away, red: put in on the enemy, dunno anything! It's a mess, everyone is one shot without knowing why. Then we got some chains draining our life... I'm just lost surely as the 9 others were too.

Meta: I love Drakkar Meta, it's okay. Various phases, very fun. Also liked the fact you added it on the core tyria world boss detector device. Thanks.

Ambiance: I'm very satisfied and stunned by your efforts. I'm very happy to find lore books around the map, seeing those scary events with ghost kodans. Kinda stressed when I saw undying boneskinner rushing me with the darkness grasp screen effect very well made. The is also that kodan who suicide itself. Thanks, I like those dark vides keep up the good work regarding that, I care.


So well, it's better than east bjora. I kinda like the QoL update of adding protection shrine icons on the map. For koda's trials too; about them, I noticed a lot of players trigger it by doing the pre koda events and then leave them. The result, you are alone against a champion, can't do it. It's just the same as the inquest security officier in sandswept... Change those as elites.. or veteran depending on how many players the event detect around it. This would be a very nice qol update too.

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I want to make three adjustments to my original post, not because I played some more, but because I saw it in WoodenPotatoes' patch overview:

1) Jumping Puzzles: At least Bjora now has one really BIG jumping puzzle! I thought they were all around the same size for some reason, but there is one that is rather massive, and I can't wait to get there and play it. I take back what I said about little parcours, that thing looks huge.2) Masteries: According to Woodenpotatoes, the mastery system is feeling kinda nice right now, and probably even the nicest it has felt since PoF or even HoT release because you a) need a huge number of points (I think around 12-13) and b) the exp requirements also got tuned up a little. That makes me very happy, I had totally forgotten about the new essence mastery tiers. Sorry devs, I was being too rash!3) Something that I glossed over but which is kind of nice and should have been mentioned: Parts of Eastern Bjora got overhauled as well, and there is a reason to go back there and play!

These are three more positives for the new patch!

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I want to add also, another very negative point related to the map of episode 2: the non respect to the Lore of Guild Wars, first of the name.

Already that Sifhalla was replaced/transformed into a Dwarf ruin (when that was not the case), they ended up erasing from the existence Haunted Homestead as if it no longer existed, I come from the ruins, but traces at least! There’s just a big mountain and then that’s it, it just hasn’t been modeled on the map. In addition, the points in comparison are offset against Guild Wars 1.https://wiki.guildwars.com/wiki/Haunted_homestead

The polymock glacier, it is not super serious, especially since it remains logical, unlike the others.

There, another shout, sorry ! To ask if they have already played at Guild Wars 1st.. :'(By the way I also largely prefer the Drakkar of Guild Wars 1st, because currently have It looks like an ugly hairy crocodile.

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The Ox trial was a bit of a puzzle doing it alone. However, when I was doing it, there was another player there. So I took the duty of an escort guard protecting the Ox. Just like in WvW where escorts protects the dolyaks.

As for Wolverine, I think being a Thief has trained me how to effectively sneak, so it wasn't too hard.

As for Eagle, I got disoriented a couple of times, but still manage to find my way around.

All in all, I really like this episode compare to the first two.

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I've only just gotten to the step where you have to cleanse the three shrines, but so far I like it. I'm intrigued by some of the things which have come up during the story (but I think that's a topic for the lore forum...and a time when I'm awake enough for appropriate spoiler tags). I found the bit where you have to complete events for the koda frustrating, but only because events kept completing and disappearing while I was still on my way there. I ended up hanging out around one of the ice lakes waiting for the fishing event to start up again rather than chasing all over trying to keep up with them.

I've also done the Drakkar fight and found it enjoyable, for a world boss. I like that the mini bosses break up the main fight and give a large group an incentive to split up for a bit (although with a full map there were still tons of people doing each bit, I look forward to doing it when it's a bit quieter and there's more time for the different mechanics to come into play.

I feel like I've barely gotten past a first glance at the map, and that excites me. It looks like there's a lot there, and a lot of areas and different levels to explore, so hopefully it's going to take me a while to find it all. I'm especially interested in this jumping puzzle. I don't think I've seen it yet, but it's possible I just haven't recognised it.

@Ruadan.9301 said:1) Jumping Puzzles: At least Bjora now has one really BIG jumping puzzle! I thought they were all around the same size for some reason, but there is one that is rather massive, and I can't wait to get there and play it. I take back what I said about little parcours, that thing looks huge.

Jumping puzzles vary hugely in size and length. The smallest ones are a spot on the map, you could walk around them in about 10 seconds and a good player could complete them - without cheating, using mounts etc. - in a minute or two. The biggest go around, over, under and through entire maps and finding the right path is as much part of the challenge as getting the jumps right. I've not found the one in this map yet, but it wouldn't surprise me if it's one of the bigger ones, if not necessarily one of the hardest.

There can also be some confusion over what is and is not a jumping puzzle because some players use that term to refer to literally any path to an objective which isn't obvious or which requires jumping at any point, no matter how short or simple it is. The ones Anet call jumping puzzles generally have an achievement for completing them and usually, but not always, a chest at the end, so you'll know when you've finished one of those (even if you didn't know at the start you were doing one).

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TOO MANY ACHIEVEMENTS. 37 achieves to get AN EMOTE THAT SHOULD BE IN THE GAME ALREADY. And most of the achieves require 20 repetitions of events. Literally hundreds of events in total FOR AN EMOTE. If this isn't cheap time-sink game design I don't know what is. Just like kitten Grothmar. You had it right in the first part of Bjora with the shorter achieve list and less reps. Why did you change it? Let us be able to just do things and be done with them, not have to repeat over and over and over and over and over...bah.

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@Randulf.7614 said:1) Sort the Drakkar fight out and make it great. Give it some mechanics. Ditch the visual noise pollution and try and design something we have to learn and overcome. This is an iconic boss after all.

I think you're putting too much credit on Drakkar, which is no different than the mouth of Zhaitan. But I agree, just like the mouth of Zhaitan fight, there should have been some fight mechanics.

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@Sir Vincent III.1286 said:

@Randulf.7614 said:1) Sort the Drakkar fight out and make it great. Give it some mechanics. Ditch the visual noise pollution and try and design something we have to learn and overcome. This is an iconic boss after all.

I think you're putting too much credit on Drakkar, which is no different than the mouth of Zhaitan. But I agree, just like the mouth of Zhaitan fight, there should have been some fight mechanics.

Mileage will vary on the Drakkar notoriety issue. For me, Drakkar's name resonates quite powerfully in Norn lore and links into EOTN strongly. I agree with your sentiment that is effectively serves the same purpose as a Mouth of Zhaitan, but they didn't really have the legacy behind them and I think there were multiple of them as well. Drakkar is a unique, named, mob tied up around a very important point of Norn lore and I did expect it to be given the treatment that such deserved.

There is clearly mixed feedback about it, but they hit massively wide of the mark on this for me in terms of gameplay at least (the shadow was cool though and the animations - what was visible amongst the heavy visual noise - was as good as I have come to expect though).

I think the days of great open world boss fights are just gone now. Something I'll just have to accept.

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TOO MANY ACHIEVEMENTS. 37 achieves to get AN EMOTE THAT SHOULD BE IN THE GAME ALREADY. And most of the achieves require 20 repetitions of events. Literally hundreds of events in total FOR AN EMOTE. If this isn't cheap time-sink busy-work game design I don't know what is. Just like kitten Grothmar. You had it right in the first part of Bjora with the shorter achieve list and less reps. Why did you change it? Let us be able to just do things and be done with them, not have to repeat over and over and over and over and over...bah.

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@Ruadan.9301 said:WOLVERINE:First of all: Playing the mini game in the Boneskinner forest made me a lot more afraid of Boneskinners than the Eastern half of Bjora did. While I wouldn't say Episode 1 made me not care about the Boneskinners - there certainly are some things they did with them that made me feel a little creeped out - this just really nailed it, at least on my first few tries. When you just KNOW that, mechanically, it will be game over once one of these creatures spots you, that just creates a very distinct and powerful sense of excitement and adrenaline when you are trying to avoid them. The boneskinners at the Wolverine shrine genuinely make me be on edge, I feel like prey. It reminds me of the spectral Mordrem wolves in the Silverwastes, and I am glad something is done with this again, because it is just something that works well, gameplay-wise.However, with this event, I haven't even made it to the shrine a single time, and I feel I need to understand the mini game better in order to judge it appropriately.

As to the rest of your post, that's great feedback imo -- I may not agree with every point, but I don't flat out disagree either; at least I can see solid arguments for your opinions.

I just wanted to address this one bit since I saw people not understanding Wolverine today so for once I figured something out without having to be told, go me! Basically there are two things to avoid, the boneskinner red circles and the exploding fungus. The boneskinners stay on predictable paths unless someone triggers them into a chase. The exploding fungus needs to be avoided or your tribute is ruined. The secret is that scattered all through the mini-maze are little whitish areas with sort of serrated edges. If you stand in one of those, the boneskinner can't see you. So you need to patiently get to a white patch, wait for the boneskinner to path past you, then move on while not touching the fungus. There are some dead ends, and there seems to be some sort of timer that means you can't just wait forever, but there is a lot of time to slowly work your way to the center with your tribute. It only gets annoying if you get penned in by fungus just after the boneskinner passes or if someone else tries to kamikaze through and hauls the boneskinner off its path to block you.

I hope that helps.

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Stop putting mastery points behind "optional" content. If you do make sure there is enough mastery points to avoid all the "optional content". This is frustrating.

The story was awful. It was bad. The whole time I just wanted to kill Braham. I did not do what I did to become a delivery boy/trash pickup. This is by far the worst Living Story so far. I hope the new place will bring new ideas, and a fun environment.

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