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Erik Mona

Erik Mona's page

Publisher, Chief Creative Officer. Pathfinder Society Member. 6,514 posts. 3 reviews. 1 list. 1 wishlist. 1 Pathfinder Society character.


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Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yeah, that's weird. It's literally not a factor in any of the Marvel _or_ Dynamite stories I've read, though in fairness I've probably read only about a third of the Dynamite stories from the pre-Simone run, so you never know.

I honestly suspect D&D influenced that write-up of Sonja more than the comics did, but if I'm wrong I'll know soon enough, since I have pretty much all of these comics and will read them all some day! :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

I'd be interested to hear where in the Marvel run Red Sonja "goes berzerk"? I've recently acquired every canonical appearance of the character from 1973 to 1986. I've read up through 1978 and no "berzerk" yet. Not saying it doesn't happen. If it dies I'd love to see how it's handled.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Yeah. A few, though far far fewer than you might expect. Especially if you don't count Conan, who features in about half of her classic Marvel adventures. Gail Simone's second Dynamite Dynamite arc introduced a series of artists and friends gathered by Sonja that seemed to me to be clearly intended to fill-out Sonja's supporting cast. Six issues after that, Marguritte Bennet incorporated a couple of these characters in fairly minor ways, but after her run it's been a bit of a dry spell in terms of a "main" Sonja ongoing, with the focus on crossovers (including mine, woo hoo!) and one-shots, so far as I'm aware. Her new ongoing sends her to modern day New York City, so while that series has a background cast, it'll be new to the character. Who knows? Maybe she'll stay in New York forever! :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Glad you guys like it! So much cool stuff to come.

The case incentive is in addition to the normal list of dungeon dressing.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Leather.

Honestly I think Thun'da is fairly sexualized, at least in that his physique is emphasized significantly. There aren't close-ups on his crotch or anything, but you see much more of the top half of his body than you do Red Sonja's.

Also Jonathan Lau's version of Red Sonja's costume is a fair amount less bikini-looking than the standard Sonja look. It's got lots of nice details and matches the Pathfinder characters pretty well.

I also had Valeros take off his shirt in the first issue so he can get in on all the man-chest action in this series.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Prepare to be driven even more crazy by the end of #3!

And pretty much the entire issue for #4! :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Rysky wrote:


Oh, I agree, I would have preferred her not in the bikini as well, continuing it is perpetuating and defending the sexist ideology, but so is trying to make a bikini into armor. And bending over backwards trying to defend making it into armor.

To play devil's advocate for just a second, of all the "main" licensed characters in this comic (Tarzan, Thun'da, Tars Tarkas, and John Carter), Red Sonja is actually wearing the _most_ clothes. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Lord Fyre wrote:


Also, Beauty (an ineffable quality) does not equal Charisma (a game stat.) Sonja needs a good charisma stat (she became both a general and queen), but doesn't need to have an "18."

An 18 for an 8th-level character isn't that big of a deal.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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I don't understand the question. Of course the designs are meant to be used.

I mean, I don't expect them to appeal to everybody, but the idea is to present rules people can use in their games if they want to.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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They also have explosive shells.

But only in sunlight.

???

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yep. It's on shelves and shipping from Paizo's warehouse presently.

Worldscape Workbook might resume as early as today, based on how some meetings and other things shake out.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Next issue is all about the green martian.

Issue #3 will have the Warlord archetype and John Carter's stats.

Tars Tarkas's stats didn't fit in issue #2, so they'll probably appear in issue #5, where he plays a significant role (he's not in issue #4).

Content for #4 and #6 is still somewhat up in the air, but could very well be a new jungle lord archetype and Tarzan stats. I think I can fit those in a single issue. Tars was a challenge because he needed a new archetype and a new race.

Sorry the story didn't click for you, Aberzombie!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Head's up: No blog this Friday. We're super busy this week and key members are out of town for the rest of the week.

More shortly.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yeah, we should get any lingering promos online for sale. Thanks for the reminder!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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One minor sour note on the set. I was expecting the cage to open, but somehow (probably for stability, I dunno), the cage doesn't open. So it's still a cool set piece, but you can't trap Small and Medium creatures in it like I intended, which is a bummer.

Fair warning!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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That's a great idea.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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You're telling me!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yeah, we wish there were a feasible way to get these out at the same time as the Adventure Paths, but as we like to allow our authors and developers the maximum possible amount of creative freedom to tell the stories the way they want to, we don't often know the complete monster mix of a given AP until the final volume goes to the printer.

Also, all that art is really, really expensive, and it helps to spread out those costs over the six months of the whole AP, plus a little time at the end to create art for stragglers who turned out to be more interesting during development than they seemed when we wrote a volume's art order, or because we simply want to, or whatever.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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So noted!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Sorry to hear that. I'd love a bit more info on what made you feel that way. We're always trying to do better.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Cat-thulhu wrote:
So how is it we can get another starter set, huge minis and an adventurers camp for that other company, but the same producer tells Paizo it's not possible?

I can't speculate on this, but I assume wholesome reasons. I think the campfire thing was just a mix-up. I'm glad it's coming at all, don't really care what brand it comes out under.

I suspect if WizKids thinks that more Huge figures work in the way that they did them for the other brand, we'd get a chance to do something similar.

One thing I really respect about WizKids is that they are always experimenting and always trying to innovate. With four sets a year (two from us and two from them), I think the experiments come with whatever set happens to be "on deck" at the time they want to try them.

It's no big deal, and it's not a contest.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yeah, I think we're sort of fixating on something that's a matter of degrees. A ton of this content, even most of it, will be totally usable whether you use the specific organizations associated with that content or not. I think you'll need to see the final book to judge for yourself just how useful it will be, but we're aiming at creating a fun book filled with cool character and equipment options, so we aim to please. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Milo v3 wrote:


So not every spell, magic item, or feat will be themed to the specific organizations in this book?

If you have an organization called "The Shadow Thieves," they might include among their standard equipment "shade-silver swords." That weapon is "themed to a specific organization" in the book, but would not be overly encumbered with intellectual property so as to preclude its inclusion in the PRD.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

I got an email from Dynamite about this issue in relation to blind customers. I'll let you know what I learn when I learn it.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yeah, at some point you've got to decide what you want to be, and straight-up "here's how to do this thing from history" is a path not taken. An analogue book is probably the closest we'd come to this.

I tend to think of it, as a business case, a bit in terms of the old AD&D Second Edition "green" books, like "Charlemange's Paladins" and stuff. I'm guessing the people who loved those books really loved them, but I'm also pretty sure they were among some of TSR's worst sellers of the era.

Simply put, a book called "Complete Guide to Paladins" with a section on a fantasy analog of Charlemange's paladins that offered nearly identical rules content would probably sell better.

I dunno. This seems like a good niche for a third-party publisher.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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We're skipping three months of Campaign Setting volumes to allow us to do some other stuff by way of experimentation this year. It's just a temporary disruption that has more to do with in-house resources than anything else.

For various reasons, we've never really considered the Campaign Setting line a true "monthly" product line, even though our release schedule often put it that way or came up just short of it.

That's why, from time to time, when we're working on an "extra" hardcover book or something else interesting, we use the Campaign Setting line as a bit of a release valve on staff resources. It's happened a few times before without attracting much notice. This time a couple of non-associated factors resulted in a three-month gap, which is a bit more noticeable.

Anyway, it's just a temporary glitch. Things will resume in June with a neat 64-page standard Campaign Setting softcover release people have been asking for for a long time.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Spell cards are something we're constantly discussing. The problem is that a lot of spells are so wordy they'd have to be split over multiple cards.

The other problem is that we are all completists at heart, so every time we talk about this we start a cycle of self-inflicted scope creep that always results in the idea dying before the end of the meeting.

I'd certainly love to figure out a way to slay this particular dragon...

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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The Pathfinder rules let you play evil characters, and some "evil" organizations have members who are not evil, or no longer evil. Some of these will likely be aimed more at traditional villains and thus will fall into the realm of the GM more often than that of the player, but such an organization's write-up might include a special knife or magic necklace or whatever that isn't tied to alignment. So there will be lots of ways to use the rules presented, no matter what sort of campaign or characters you're running with.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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(For 2017.)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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JoelF847 wrote:


I am curious though why this simply wasn't the 1/year Campaign Setting hardcover though. Also, since this is campaign setting specific, does having it be in the RPG line mean that there won't be a campaign setting hardcover this year?

There won't be a Campaign Setting hardcover this year. It's all part of the experiment.

Again, there are more surprises coming in 2016.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Encounter Codex is still in the mix, but has not yet landed in a permanent spot. It's neither gone, nor forgotten... nor next.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Snorter wrote:

Would they work as variant Deep Ones?

Not sure how much of the Cthulhu Mythos is implied for Sonja's world, though Howard was of course a first generation contributor to the canon.

They seem much more mundane, in a sense, than deep ones. They're more or less just fish-men goons if I'm being honest, but Walter Giovanni put so many fun little details and differences into their depiction that they just call out to be a very customizable 0-HD PC race for Pathfinder.

In my opinion, anyway. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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There will be more Worldscape beyond the comic series. Not sure the exact format yet, but stay tuned. Lots of interesting plans in the works on that front, and I've naturally got a lot more to say about the topic. On a lighter note, I'm thinking about starting a campaign set there...

Also, Steve, thank you so much for that thoughtful review of issue #1. Your appreciation and long-time support mean a lot to me, and I'm thrilled that you enjoyed the issue. I've really poured my heart into this series, so it's great to see it receive a positive reception (especially from you!).

As an aside, Steve, I just got the final packaged product for Pathfinder Battles: Deadly Foes yesterday, and only got a chance to open it for the first time last night. I think it's one of the strongest sets yet! You're going to really dig it, I think!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Milo v3 wrote:
This'll be the first RPG-line book I'll pass on. Might have given it a look depending on the content that's not setting-tied once it goes on the PRD, but since it says " all themed to the various organizations presented in this book!" there probably wont be any of that.

That's nonsense. There will be a ton of that.

Not saying it'll make you want the book any more or less, but not every item or ability or whatever in this book is going to have a proper noun in it.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Dragon78 wrote:
If they were going to make an experiment with the RPG line with adding Golarion specific stuff, then instead of organizations being the focus/theme for class abilities how about regions and cultures like Arcadia, Hermia, Tian Xia, Land of the Linnorm Kings, etc.

I suppose, if the experiment is deemed successful, that something like this would not be out of the question. Back in the very early days of the Pathfinder RPG, when we were discussing what sorts of directions we could take the rules--and perhaps specifically the rules _line_--we often discussed a book that would take you through various "themes" of play derived from Greek, Norse, Indian, etc. legends. We ultimately decided not to play so close to Earth analogues, but the campaign setting has enough stand-ins that I suppose we could legitimately do such a book with analogues, rather than the real thing. I don't think people would buy "Ancient Adventures" that statted up stuff based specifically on ancient Egypt, Assyria, and Babylon, for example, but a pure-fantasy book that played with those themes--and that supported them with concrete, interesting rules content--would probably do a lot better.

So we'll see.

It's an experiment.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Antony Walls wrote:


That doesn't really ring true. The odd content, and the fact that it wasn't announced earlier, has a feeling of dishonesty to it, which is shocking to me as it is the opposite of Paizo's usual stance.

I'm sorry if you feel that there's anything dishonest about it. The book was announced at the same time as our other May solicitations, so I'm not sure what you mean by "it wasn't announced earlier."

There are more surprises coming in 2017. Starfinder is indeed throwing a monkeywrench into the cadence of regular Pathfinder RPG releases and when we announce them, but this product was announced now because now is when we're soliciting May products. It's really as simple as that.

Antony Walls wrote:


Just tell us the truth, this is "Inner Sea Factions" renamed to fill a gap.

No, it's not. The focus is on character abilities and options, not on building factions or tracking influence and such within factions. The "factions" element of this book is a framework for more fun game content.

Antony Walls wrote:


It will probably not be in the PRD as it will contain Product Identity names.

For the same reason it cannot be extended by third parties.

We're working on that.

Antony Walls wrote:
It cannot be integrated in to non-licensed character generators.

I admit this is not a huge concern of mine. Sorry.

Antony Walls wrote:


It should not be an RPG line book.

We'll see. It's an experiment. I'm willing to try it out and see how it goes, because I'm certain it will be a cool book. I understand you feel differently, which is also OK.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Folks,

The Adventurer's Guide will be appearing here officially soon. Sometimes with the way we solicit this information to distributors, sites like icv2 can "leak" material before we've had a chance to get it up on our site ourselves. Some staff illnesses and other boring, unimportant day-to-day business stuff contributed to us not having our ducks in a row on this book this time, but I'm hoping that all gets sorted out by Monday.

The Adventurer's Guide IS a Pathfinder RPG book, published in the Pathfinder RPG line. This is a bit of a departure for us because the book WILL have more "Golarion" content in it than a regular book, but the emphasis is largely on character options, equipment, and other rules elements aimed at player characters, not on detailing the precise history of each of these organizations.

Organizations and power groups pose an interesting creative challenge for us when it comes to maintaining a strict wall between Campaign Setting and RPG line material. We started this book thinking "we should do a cool book with tons of character options related to different groups players can join." From there we faced a key decision: Do we make up a bunch of "generic" placeholder knighthoods, assassins guilds, mercenary leagues and the like, simply to preserve that distinction, or do we add some more cool details and further flesh out organizations that people presumably already care about, and sometimes care about a great deal?

With the assumption that people who don't care one way or the other will just carry on blissfully using the stuff they like and ignoring or changing the stuff that they don't--something that doesn't change whether the book uses Golarion organizations or not--we decided to go with the better-known organizations.

This is an experiment. To be completely honest, there is a bit of a school of thought here that thinks the big wall between the campaign world and the rules is more trouble than its worth. This book is a test to see if that is true. I'm excited by what I've seen from the book so far, and I believe it will be a worthy addition to the Roleplaying Game hardcover line.

I hope (and to some extent expect) you'll feel the same way once you've had a chance to check it out for yourself.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Ok, folks. I think the constructive feedback phase of this thread has come to a close, especially as the Paizo staff will not be around this weekend to deal with any aftershocks or late flare-ups.

Should you want to continue to discuss issues like this in a cordial, constructive manner, feel free to open another thread in which to do so.

This one has served its purpose, and then some.

Have a good weekend, everybody.

Go play some games. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Mine all mine...don't touch wrote:
Got my first issue last night at my local shop and really enjoyed. Looking forward to issue two. (And 3-6) :)

Thanks, Mine! Glad you enjoyed the issue! Lots more insanity to come!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Belltrap wrote:
Is there any chance that we could see those 'few other original death vows' as unofficial supplemental material?

Maybe if I get the chance to actually write them instead of just thinking about them. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Cat-thulhu wrote:
The cloaker isn't too far out for me, they are meant to cloak a medium and I'm ok with the size. Then again I was happy with the leucrotta. I am conncerned about the size of the cave giant, they are low CR Giants but this one appears to be quite small, he stand about the same height as barzillai thrune!

The Cave Giant is heavily bent over, almost crouching.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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I didn't even bother trying to make it map to a point-buy system. This is an adaptation of an existing character, so I went where the source material led me.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yolande d'Bar wrote:

I really like the rope trick. I'd be interested to see a mini that could be used for the various (cough Bigby's cough) hand spells.

I'd say these are pretty high on my list. I have NO insight into what "that other line" does (obviously, or there would probably be less crossover), but I'd say they might want to do them, too. They could even have their full, proper name, which an old Greyhawk nerd who used to live in my body would really appreciate.

Anyway, good suggestion!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Duncan7291 wrote:
Erik Mona wrote:
Duncan7291 wrote:
Rope trick mini. Really? Not a fan at all. I hope your group finds your favoritism particularly useful. I doubt most of us will.
Sorry! Here's hoping the other 48+ figures in the set are more your speed.
They are ;). I think that's the source of my frustration with the rope trick. I can think of numerous other minis that fit the theme of this set that could had been included instead of the rope trick. Also, my reading of this blog post happen to catch me at a particularly bitter time. I apologize for the tone of my first post but my reasons behind the objection still stand.

Hey, man! No problem! It's totally OK with me if you don't like a mini, or even a bunch of minis. It's impossible to please everyone every time. I just try to do the best I can satisfying as many people as I can, and every so often I toss in a random "just for me" choice as a bit of a personal reward and because, while not everyone will like it, I figure it'll spike intense like in other folks like me, which works for me, too.

If you have ideas for other dungeon dressing that you think better fits the Deadly Foes theme, by all means please let me know what it is. I find this type of piece the most difficult to select, and am happy to receive as many suggestions as possible.

From the weird rarity to the need to make them as high-utility as possible (especially because some folks don't seem to use them _at all_), there's a lot of pressure to "get it right."

So, by all means, help a brother out! :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Duncan7291 wrote:
Rope trick mini. Really? Not a fan at all. I hope your group finds your favoritism particularly useful. I doubt most of us will.

Sorry! Here's hoping the other 48+ figures in the set are more your speed.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Good question. I will strongly suggest that they do so!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Thanks, Geraint!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Yes, we would have made the timeline shorter if we had a chance to do it again. The real problem is in mapping the fall of Azlant to the ice age melt on Earth that allegedly sunk Atlantis, which is probably where the 10,000-year scale comes from.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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Berselius wrote:
Okay, so, Pathfinder Worldscape Issue #1 will have Red Sonja's stats but will Issue #1 also have a full description for the Sword-Devil archetype? Or will that be in another issue?

Issue #1 is Red Sonja's stats and the sword-devil archetype.

Issue #2 is Tars Tarkas's stats and the warlord archetype.

Everything else is still TBD.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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I will have to check on the PDF issue, guys. Electronic rights for the comics are totally controlled by Dynamite.

The map for the first issue will be a jungle clearing with creepy "summoning pillars" inscribed with the symbol of Nex. All of the iconics appear in the Worldscape near such monoliths, so expect to see a lot of them on the mini-maps in this series. :)

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