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Stellaris - Paradox new sci-fi grand strategy game

Discussion in 'Strategy and Simulation' started by Perkel, Aug 6, 2015.

  1. Space Satan Arcane

    Space Satan
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    DD. New goals
    Show Spoiler

    Hello everyone and welcome to another Stellaris development diary. Today's dev diary will be focusing on the road ahead after Cherryh and Apocalypse, and our long-term priorities going forward.

    Cherryh Post-Release Support
    As mention in last week's dev diary, the immediate priority for the team is post-release support for Cherryh and Apocalypse, fixing bugs, addressing balance/feature feedback, and working on quality of life and performance improvements. We are maintaining a running 2.0.2 beta patch which we will continue to update every few days or so until we are happy with the state of the game.

    The Post-Apocalypse
    Apocalypse and Cherryh were an expansion/patch focused almost exclusively on war, and with it out, we are now going to be moving on to other, non-war related priorities for future updates, expansions and story packs. To give you an idea of what's coming, we're going to revisit the list of long-term goals for Stellaris I made and updated for Dev Diary #50 and Dev Diary #69. This time, we're going to organize the goals into the ones we feel have been delivered on, old goals that were added to the list before 2.0, and new goals that we have set for ourselves after 2.0 (there is no prioritization difference between goals based on when they were added or whether they are considered old or new for this particular list).

    As before, the list is NOT in order of priority, and something being considered completed NOT mean we aren't going to continue to improve on it in future updates, just that we consider it to be at a satisfactory level.

    As before, THIS IS NOT AN EXHAUSTIVE OR FINAL LIST, NOTHING NOT ALREADY COMPLETED IS CERTAIN TO HAPPEN AND THERE ARE NO ETAS

    Completed Goals
    • Ship appearance that differs for each empire, so no two empires' ships look exactly the same.
    • More potential for empire customization, ability to build competitive 'tall' empires.
    • Global food that can be shared between planets.
    • Ability to construct space habitats and ringworlds.
    • Factions that are proper interest groups with specific likes and dislikes and the potential to be a benefit to an empire instead of just being rebels.
    • Ability to set rights and obligations for particular species in your empire.
    • Buildable Dreadnoughts and Titans.
    • Deeper mechanics and unique portraits for synthetics.
    • Reworking the endgame crises to be more balanced against each other and the size/state of the galaxy.
    • Reworks to war to address the 'doomstacks' issue and make the strategic and tactical layers of warfare more interesting and less micro-intensive.
    • Superweapons and planet killers.
    Old Goals
    • A 'galactic community' with interstellar politics and a 'space UN'.
    • Deeper Federations that start out as loose alliances and can eventually be turned into single states through diplomatic manuevering.
    • More story events and reactive narratives that give a sense of an unfolding story as you play.
    • More interesting mechanics for pre-FTL civilizations.
    New Goals
    • Less micromanagement and more focus on interesting choices in regards to planets, the ability to grow planets beyond current fixed size.
    • Empire trade mechanics and trade agreements.
    • A galactic market where resources and strategic resources can be imported and exported.
    • Espionage and sabotage mechanics.
    • Improved galaxy/hyperlane generation with better placed systems and dangers.
    • More anomalies and unique systems to explore.

    That's all for today! Over the next few weeks, dev diaries will continue to focus on post-release support. Feature dev diaries will resume when we have new features to talk about. Finishing off this dev diary is a screenshot of how we're reworking difficulty modes in the next update to the rolling 2.0.2 beta:
    [​IMG]


     
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  2. Jimmious Arcane

    Jimmious
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    Good to see that the advantages can be actually removed from the AI now to please everyone
     
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  3. MadMaxHellfire Magister

    MadMaxHellfire
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    stellaris needs to steal more and more from europa universalis. now that planet colonies take several years to grow it's the perfect time to add the events from eu's colonies or at least "you found a new toxic plant species, what do you do? 1) study +5% research 2) botanic garden +5% energy 3) weaponize +5% army damage -5% habitability". even galciv3 has them.
    unrest must become an issue, i have 800+ hours on this game (many spent afk, but they're still a huge lot) and i've seen TWO rebellions, never under my command. i want to have to keep drowning rebellions in blood, i need to build defensive armies for a reason. i want to have to take back planets from rebels. i've seen events which do stuff like that, it means it's already coded into the game since the beginning, it must be used.
    eu4 keeps throwing at you internal crises, some of them can't be avoided or are extremely hard to (castille's civil wars, england's war of the roses). they can be tied to anything you like between government types, civics, traits, whatever. imagination is the limit, i could come with a full set of them in an afternoon or two of lazily rolling my face on the keyboard.
     
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  4. Jimmious Arcane

    Jimmious
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    It's true that empires tend to be very "calm" internally and that contributes to the slow mid-game
     
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  5. Average Manatee Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Average Manatee
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    They did seem to buff internal unrest that slaver empires encounter very slightly. Still very easy to handle though.

    I'm not sure how you could even do realistic internal struggle in a space environment without a radically different universe, like Dune's Feudal model (travel is hard, everything is fragmented, controlling anything more than a planet is impossible without delegation). In a strong-FTL universe like Stellaris where travel and communication is so easy there's really no plausible reason for most societies to break down, any society that manages to become spacefaring should already be competent enough to avoid collapsing on its own.

    This is slightly off topic/SF speculative fantasies, but I've always thought about a potential 4x space game where you'd spend the early game (first 50 turns or w/e) without FTL, just colonizing and managing your empire in the solar system. The trick would be that you'd want to send out non-FTL generation ships to neighboring systems to speed up midgame development, but since you'd lose all real contact with them they'd grow up to be their own unique independent civilizations with their own government, tech, etc that you'd have to work with to either unite or conquer for the midgame. You could have lots of plausible scenarios like how Stellaris models federations with limited central control, or a colony that gets contact by aliens before Earth and ends up assimilated by them or develops xenophilia and starts assisting aliens to the detriment of Earth, and so on. Stellaris kind of dips its toes in the water here with the split between the UNE and CoM, but imagine if the game decreased the number of aliens in the galaxy significantly and instead every game had dozens of splinter civilizations for each race. Starcraft has this sort of setup too, where the pre-FTL colonists got alien contact first and pretty much doom humanity's chances for survival by destroying the UED fleet just because fuck being Earth's bitch.

    Problem with this is that you'd have to make it completely equal across all of the ideologies/governments, because the devs are set on making Stellaris a balanced game. And you couldn't really do an event-driven revolt or players would just find ways to game the events (like how easy it is to avoid the Dutch revolts in EU4).
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2018
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  6. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    Lol yesterday my Empire almost collapsed in unrest and hunger because some faggots revolted and took Terra and another world during a war. Even after the war, I forgot to claim the other planet, so I almost died anyway if not for trading some food and energy to jumpstart my production.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk
     
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  7. Norfleet Moderator

    Norfleet
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    I can't imagine this would be a very effective way to speed up the midgame to intentionally create rivals, but what if it's a very effective way of dealing with your initial starting environment where the Earth is highly divided and the easiest way to get rid of the disagreeable ones so they don't cause you any problems now? Kick them out into space by funding their expedition to leave. This may not entirely stop even as you move later into the game. The game thus might not even need to have any aliens, which, frankly, are not all that plausible of an encounter scenario to begin with.
     
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  8. Average Manatee Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Average Manatee
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    The idea would be that Earth would still be the strongest individually and the game balance would be tilted in the direction of the colonies on average being friendly and eventually joining up. There would also be some kind of defensive mechanic where any significant outside aggression from aliens would cause a intra-race defensive pact of sorts. In the long run the race would be stronger and larger, but the player would have meaningful management and development challenges. It also obviously depends a lot on economic factors like how long it takes to grow colonies and how much development time is saved. You'd want to make good and well developed planets much stronger than what Stellaris does. A planet with 100 years more to grow and develop would be 100 years ahead on the growth curve of other planets, forever.

    Seems more unrealistic that anyone would build a spaceship for billions of people. Even a million would be an absurdly colossal undertaking.
     
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  9. MadMaxHellfire Magister

    MadMaxHellfire
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    there's a mod for stellaris which does exactly that. i can't recall its name but it's a recent one, after the launch of apocalypse, and it gives you this start by tying it to a civic. i can't tell you more, sorry.
    also, there're "pre-ftl players" and "primitive players" which to a lesser extent could be used for part of what you're asking.
     
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  10. Jimmious Arcane

    Jimmious
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    MadMaxHellfire fyi quoting from Pdox forums:
     
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  11. Norfleet Moderator

    Norfleet
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    Unless you've let it get out of control, you probably don't have a billion dissidents. Just a few thousand you can deport before it gets out of hand.
     
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  12. thesheeep Arcane

    thesheeep
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    It would also be rather stupid. If at all, a fleet should be built, so that not everyone dies if a ship goes up in flames.
    Rule no.1 of space travel: redundancy.
     
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  13. MilesBeyond Savant

    MilesBeyond
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    Man, I almost hate to say it, but I'm actually loving the new changes to the game. I get the criticisms, and I don't think they're wrong, but I still consider the game right now to be significantly better than it was on launch. The space travel purge is hard for me to land on - on the one hand, having three different modes of travel was one thing that made Stellaris really unique, and really added to the flavour of the different empires. But the galactic chokepoints created by the all-FTL system really opens the game up strategically, IMHO, especially combined with the way that you can build up starbases into pretty substantial defensive structures, while still being open enough to allow for multi-pronged attacks. I also really love having all the basic tier one ship tech available right from the get go, and in fact ship design in general tends to have a lot more options right out the gates, making it a lot more interesting. Most of all, the disengage system is fantastic. I think that alone makes the game significantly better.

    All in all, IMHO 2.0 made warfare much, much better in Stellaris - or at least, it did once they patched out that ridiculous "Auto peace at 100% war exhaustion" thing, which fortunately didn't take long.

    I also enjoy the economic changes. I like the new border system, but bear in mind that I normally play on medium size galaxies. It definitely seems like the sort of mechanic where whether it's fun or tedious hinges on the map size. What I like is the tension and decision making that comes from needing to expend influence every time you want to take a new system, and you're never going to have enough influence, which means you need to think about not only what you need, but what you will need later. I love the changes to influence in general, actually. It always felt like a bit of a strange resource, but now between needing it for every system and having to pay a lump sum to implement edicts, I feel like I can never get enough, and I find myself constantly trying to balance out the different factions in my empire to try and keep them happy enough to rack in more of that sweet, sweet purple mana.

    I don't like the way the new travel system makes it take forever for your ships to get anywhere. I think maybe a good fix to this is to give a significant speed boost to both FTL and sublight travel when in your own borders - not only does this make it less tedious, but it also provides additional strategic benefits to expanding your borders whenever possible. At the same time, the slow travel time does make it a lot harder for big empires to fight wars on multiple fronts, which helps mitigate problems with snowballing? But I don't know that it's worth it.

    And there's still quite a few other issues with the game. Late game still feels kinda meh, sectors are a much better system than they were at launch but still aren't a good system, and there's still quite a few areas that could stand to be fleshed out. But as things are now, I still have no problem saying that IMHO Stellaris is easily the best space 4X that isn't called "Master of Orion."
     
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  14. Space Satan Arcane

    Space Satan
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    DD. Shit
    Show Spoiler

    Hello and welcome to another Stellaris dev diary. As we are still in full post-release support mode, until we are ready to get back to regular feature dev diaries, we're not going to have full-length dev diaries. Instead, we'll use the dev diaries to highlight certain fixes or tweaks that we feel need highlighting. Today, we're going to be covering some changes coming to the 2.0.2 beta in regards to War Exhaustion and forced Status Quo.

    In 2.0, with the new war system, we added forced status quo peace as part of the new war exhaustion mechanics. We felt that this mechanic was necessary to ensure that limited wars could actually happen and so that the outmatched side in a war still had a reason to fight (pushing the enemy into 100% war exhaustion in order to force peace and reduce their territorial concessions). There were some problems with this mechanic, however, primarily that people felt surprised by a sudden peace in which they might lose systems the enemy has just occupied days ago, and also that certain wars (such as subjugation wars) were very difficult to fully win before being force-peaced out.

    After receiving intial player feedback on these issues, we decided to try out a different model of war exhaustion in the 2.0.2 beta, replacing the forced status quo with a penalty at 100% war exhaustion. We have since been playing, testing, tweaking and collecting further feedback, and coming to the conclusion that our original design was correct - forced peace is necessary for the new war system to not simply become a series of single wars to the death, or powerful empires forcing a weaker empire into 100% war exhaustion and refusing to peace while their enemies were crippled by penalties.

    For this reason, we will be reintroducing forced status quo peace, and this time it's here to stay. However, we are not simply going to roll back to exactly the way it is in 2.0, instead it will now work as follows:
    - When a side in a war reaches 100% war exhaustion, they are now flagged as being at high war exhaustion, and get the alert as before
    - Once at high war exhaustion, a 24 month timer will start to tick down for that side in the war. Once the timer is up, that war side can be forced into a status quo peace
    - There will be no penalties for war exhaustion, but we will leave in the functionality for modders, as well as the ability to change the number of months before a forced peace is possible or disable forced peace altogether, so that those who truly hate to the idea of ever being forced to peace can at least change it through modding

    These changes should mean that a status quo peace is something that doesn't come as a sudden surprise, and give the player time to start winding down their war and retake occupied systems when that war exhaustion counter ticks over into 100%.

    We are also going to look into the possibility of changing Subjugation and Forced Ideology wars to either provide a clearer path to win such a war when the enemy has allies defending them, or by allowing Status Quo in such a war to achieve a 'limited victory' (liberating/subjugating part of the enemy empire instead of the whole).

    These changes will not be in the very next version of 2.0.2 (as that is already being internally tested and will hopefully be with you before the end of the week), but we expect to roll them out sometime next week if all goes well.

    That's all for today! See you next week for another 2.0 post-release dev diary.
    [​IMG]
     
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  15. MadMaxHellfire Magister

    MadMaxHellfire
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    war exhaustion should be able to also click back: if my empire is in a war and it keeps winning i want it to keep winning more and more, fuck my enemies, as long as i'm winning i'm willing to stay in war forever. an enemy planet with 10 billions enemies has just been bombed to oblivion and skyrim? next round is on me! the winning side has no interest ever to end a war until it has everything it wants. make wars expensive, make ships cost 10 times upkeep as soon as they leave the docks (but give me system defenses, like that awesome mod did)(on a slightly related note, simple outposts should have a free slot where you could fit a nav beacon for faster stl travel, more system defense ships or a minefield. a minefield should be the equivalent of eu's burn land, but permanent).

    also i've always hated the forced war conclusions: many times in europa universalis, knowing i couldn't destroy this enemy world power in a single war, i kept its regions occupied which stops its economy, cripples its expansion and sometimes lowers its stability, which is the worst damage possible. given the chance, i want and i must be allowed to curbstomp my enemy. war is hell.
    i'm fine with revolts, give me +100, maybe even +200 unrest to non-militaristic pops (after all it's so unbelievably easy to manage...), when i reach 100 exhaustion, i'll drown them in blood, but don't force me stuff i don't want to. it's idiotic.

    this makes me angry, stellaris needs only very small touches to be awesome, but they never came in the name of... of what? not even balance. i'm puzzled.
     
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  16. Sranchammer Arcane

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    Shouldn't war exhaustion trigger major rebellions? That sounds more challenging.
     
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  17. MadMaxHellfire Magister

    MadMaxHellfire
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    it should, but it actually doesn't.
    on the other hand, overextension in europa universalis does, but it shouldn't. i mean, the nation i belong just conquered a whole new continent, why the hell should i be upset?
     
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  18. Space Satan Arcane

    Space Satan
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    Hivemind rebellion? Spiritualist rebellion, for a war, promised by their gods? Militarist rebellions? For showing weakness? Robot rebellions?
     
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  19. MadMaxHellfire Magister

    MadMaxHellfire
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    hivemind rebellion: the war effort weakens the bond, drones wander off and without the guidance become violent.
    spiritualist: we aren't winning as promised/prophetized! we're doomed! you brought us in an unwinnable war! i'll kill you!
    militarist: you're not worthy of command. time for a coup.
    robot: to focus on repairing losses, less maintenance means more faulty robots.

    what were you saying?
    and anyway, some traits could give immunity to rebellions, just add a hidden +1000 unrest and you're set.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2018
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  20. baturinsky Arcane

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    Lanes-only makes defensive stations viable.
     
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  21. LizardWizard Savant

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    The beta patch added an event that makes your psi Chose One God-Empress(or) if you're government isn't imperial. This can be pretty strong as the event shifts ethics towards Authoritarian, changes civics to Philosopher King/Imperial Cult/Aristo Elite (get the third civic even if you haven't researched the appropriate tech). Which was amazing for my current game as it replaced life seeded (which is useless after early game). My God-Emprah has 10% Unity/Science gain and reduced Corvette/Mining station cost which is perfect since Pirates are annoying as shit and Torpedo boats beat everything.
     
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  22. ilitarist Learned Illiterate Village Idiot

    ilitarist
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    I think I've figured out ideological problem with Stellaris. They've embraced familiar mechanics from EU4 and made the game even more, so to say, granular: your ships really fly through all this space, you capture each system individually. There's less random stuff here, you don't get to colonize a planet that will add 5 rich systems to your empire. Space becomes more systemic and thus boring. By the dreaded midgame you have uniform blobs bumping into each other. Some blobs may be bigger, some smaller; some have a lot connections to each others, some don't. And when you have 70 systems you don't see other empire special systems as special. Someone mentioned craving enemy's black hole system for physics research. But why would you if an empty space on any of your planet with any POP on it will produce more research? There's nothing special when everything is so big. I fought wars to get systems with enclaves and access to Leviathans (both added in DLC) but even that doesn't help that much; some of your inner factions become happier. Strategic resources are roughly equivalent to being one step in research ahead and you get plenty of those. Getting new planets and species is hard to notice, that unrest doesn't really affect you. You may use new species to colonize more but your 21st planet is not that exciting anymore and requires too much involvement to get your empire's productivity raised by 4% or something.

    So the ideological problem is this: Stellaris doesn't have midgame. It only has endgame. First there's initial stage: you note how starlanes go, you settle first colonies and really get into managing them, you throw pops around, you manage resources. But then immideately comes the endgame. There's no grand battle for deciding the fate of the universe, it's all feels determined when it happens. It feels like mopping up. You already have most of interesting inventions and traditions you really wanted; now you get whatever is presented to you. It's like Civilization after turn 400 when everything is decided and you just have to click end turn to get your spaceship to fly - only you'll have to do it for most of the game and you might not even win. You research future tech and mop around, you fight wars where 90% of the action is capturing systems of an enemy with 0 ships and you still have to manage armies to capture planets. Unlike Endless Space 2 there's species-wide story but... We're all psionics, we took 2 ascension perks for that. Wow, our researches now produce whole 10% more of science and admirals have another 10% bonus - that's a whole new game!.. Really nothing feels like a significant change. Even your relationships with resources are the same - even after 250 years of play you will struggle with energy balance and will be able to use any amount of minerals in a day. It switches from the early game wonder to late game clicking through turns while most 4X like Civilization have a middle game where everything is actually decided, when it's fun to play. Meanwhile in something like Endless Space 2 the game evolves; by the endgame the way of interacting with most mechanics completely changes, you stop caring about one type of resources at all while you need some others and they seem worthy of a galactic-scale war.

    But Stellaris is balanced even though it's random. All the unique anomalies and special resources are within strategic sane boundaries. They're all there to allow you to balance things out, see if you rather want +5% food or +10% speed of energy weapons. It's granular and lifeless. You will never see enemy hold system that you have to fight for.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2018
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  23. whatevername Arcane

    whatevername
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    The ideological problem with Stellaris is: their boss said "Lets make a game for gullible retards that play Call of Duty so we could shovel dem dolla bills. Use this rat maze simulator and change rat graphics to spaceships."
     
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  24. Vaarna_Aarne Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    MCA Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2
    Or defensive line, or ambush (or given this context, a TRAP!).

    Restriction of maneuver paradoxically is necessary for the importance of maneuver.
     
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  25. Norfleet Moderator

    Norfleet
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    Ahoy thar, Vaarna. Why aren't you showing up to queue your mandogrind?
     
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