Is 3.5e bloat coming back?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Silver Crusade

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chaoseffect wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
I would also like it if some people here would acknowledge that their way is not the one and true way to play the game, that just because they don't see a benefit for an option that others cannot.
Sure, I can acknowledge that there are some options that are niche but still useful if you can acknowledge that there are options that provide practically zero benefit for anyone.

List them then and let's see if we can find uses for them.


Why are you still here? No matter what anyone says you're just gonna keep arguing.


I find it funny a lot of people are saying no or that they don't mind the bloat in the least.


Thomas Long 175 wrote:
I find it funny a lot of people are saying no or that they don't mind the bloat in the least.

well yeah, its extra options! I mean, they won't use 80% of it... but like... maybe one or two parts. I mean, if it was quality everyone might use all of it but...

wait what was I saying again?


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Almost as amusing as the same people making the same sarcastic arguments in this thread as in every other that comes up in the same vein. You don't like it. We get it.

Options are just that, options. What you choose or not to use is up to you, but I'd wager that there are people using some of the so-called bloat quite happily and don't understand the snarkiness about it.

And really, that's what these threads become: the same people arguing about the same tired things back and forth. State an opinion and move on rather than trying to trash the other person, you know? That would keep these threads from being unpleasant and getting locked all the time.


MrSin wrote:
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
I find it funny a lot of people are saying no or that they don't mind the bloat in the least.

well yeah, its extra options! I mean, they won't use 80% of it... but like... maybe one or two parts. I mean, if it was quality everyone might use all of it but...

wait what was I saying again?

Lol no no, I agree completely, I actually tend to enjoy power creep because my friends won't spend time looking at it all, but the more options that become available the more viable builds like knife throwers and such become.


knightnday wrote:

Almost as amusing as the same people making the same sarcastic arguments in this thread as in every other that comes up in the same vein. You don't like it. We get it.

Options are just that, options. What you choose or not to use is up to you, but I'd wager that there are people using some of the so-called bloat quite happily and don't understand the snarkiness about it.

And really, that's what these threads become: the same people arguing about the same tired things back and forth. State an opinion and move on rather than trying to trash the other person, you know? That would keep these threads from being unpleasant and getting locked all the time.

Way to jump to conclusions, missing completely, and pulling a wiley coyote off a cliff. I love pouring through new books.


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knightnday wrote:
Options are just that, options.

Its not just that you get options, but the quality of those options. I don't mind having more options and I actually liking having options, but its important that those options be of value.


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MrSin wrote:
knightnday wrote:
Options are just that, options.
Its not just that you get options, but the quality of those options. I don't mind having more options and I actually liking having options, but its important that those options be of value.

And with that I agree with you. The question is, who decides if they have value? Apparently someone at the company thought they did or they wouldn't have been printed. They've explained on a few occasions why things like Toughness are around, for example, but they haven't broken down every feat and trait to explain the same.

Now I imagine that would go a long way to helping some folks understand the hows and whys of the design -- or possibly just start more arguments.

The problem with threads like these is they become less about "Hey, this could be a problem let's brainstorm and fix it" and instead are a litany of why the designers make sucky choices and why anyone who doesn't agree with X point (on both sides, mind you) are horrible people that deserve to die in a fire. Which, you know, internet and all that. But still, it makes for poor reading and likely doesn't convince the devs to do much about the perceived issues.


Dude, just check out Inner Sea Gods. Most of the feats in that book are so bad the only reason I can see for their printing is "because X god needed a feat"


shallowsoul wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
I would also like it if some people here would acknowledge that their way is not the one and true way to play the game, that just because they don't see a benefit for an option that others cannot.
Sure, I can acknowledge that there are some options that are niche but still useful if you can acknowledge that there are options that provide practically zero benefit for anyone.
List them then and let's see if we can find uses for them.

Sure, why not. Scrolling randomly down the General feats category here are some that caught my eye as feats that would benefit practically no build, even ones built on a niche concept. You could argue that the negligible benefit of each means it is not worthless as it has at least some benefit (as opposed to say, choosing to just not have a feat in that slot or taking a theoretical feat that gives you -10 to all d20 rolls), but that would be a bit disingenuous, especially considering each chosen feat locks you out from taking another at that level.

Prophetic Visionary
Galley Slave
Fast Crawl
Eagle Eyes
Babble Peddler (which could have actually been intriguing if it wasn't for the built in "the DM will only let you use this when it will not matter in the slightest")
Caustic Slur

Which builds would you consider these a valuable part of?


knightnday wrote:
The problem with threads like these is they become less about "Hey, this could be a problem let's brainstorm and fix it" and instead are a litany of why the designers make sucky choices and why anyone who doesn't agree with X point (on both sides, mind you) are horrible people that deserve to die in a fire. Which, you know, internet and all that. But still, it makes for poor reading and likely doesn't convince the devs to do much about the perceived issues.

Well, its largely an issue that when people come up with fixes they get ignored also. We rarely see scaling feats for example, though we ask. They even split feats up and expect us to take them both. They still have a lot of nasty unnecessary pre-reqs, and we're probably not getting any errata anytime soon on those. Its a lot harder to care about making suggestions when they aren't taken. Takes a worse turn if someone disagrees with you.

but uhh... probably not supposed to talk too much about that sort of thing.

So bout' dat bloat.


chaoseffect wrote:
Galley Slave

There's a feat about being a galley slave? And it only gives you a +2 to damage and a profesion on a particular kind of ship!?

That's... pretty niche. and bad.


shallowsoul wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
I would also like it if some people here would acknowledge that their way is not the one and true way to play the game, that just because they don't see a benefit for an option that others cannot.
Sure, I can acknowledge that there are some options that are niche but still useful if you can acknowledge that there are options that provide practically zero benefit for anyone.
List them then and let's see if we can find uses for them.

Keep in mind that you're the one who said that you don't have to be mechanically effective to be effective.

Which is just insanity.

Why does it matter to you if we push for flavorful options to be effective options as well?


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MrSin wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
Galley Slave

There's a feat about being a galley slave? And it only gives you a +2 to damage and a profesion on a particular kind of ship!?

That's... pretty niche. and bad.

Ironically after I posted the list above I came up with a good use for Fast Crawl... Plains Druid. At level 4 you get constant concealment for being prone in natural surroundings. Combine with Moonlight Stalker and be a lion and/or large cat with pounce who rolls constantly to get anywhere while stealthed. Monkey Style would be better though.


knightnday wrote:
And with that I agree with you. The question is, who decides if they have value? Apparently someone at the company thought they did or they wouldn't have been printed.

Well, it also depend what you mean by "value" there are options so bad and other so broken that I will question the honesty of anyone trying to defend them.

I mean, mistakes happens sometimes, and, as Mr. Byers have repeated all over the other thread, printing a book with 100% great quality options is extremely hard, but then do not defend silly things. I get that.

I once asked James Jacobs about a terrible feat for monks. He said something like "Sometimes bad things slip in the books, this is one of those, just do not pay attention to it and enjoy the rest of the book", I appreciate this kind of responses.

If by the other hand a dev tell me that everything is fine with slings...


chaoseffect wrote:
MrSin wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
Galley Slave

There's a feat about being a galley slave? And it only gives you a +2 to damage and a profesion on a particular kind of ship!?

That's... pretty niche. and bad.

Ironically after I posted the list above I came up with a good use for Fast Crawl... Plains Druid. At level 4 you get constant concealment for being prone in natural surroundings. Combine with Moonlight Stalker and be a lion and/or large cat with pounce who rolls constantly to get anywhere while stealthed. Monkey Style would be better though.

Not abad at all. Plains Druid x/ MoMs 2 could also work.


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Actually, I have an answer to the question of why bloat matters. It increases the cost of learning the system, and thereby repels potential new players. Teaching someone to play PFS is fine if you have someone so novice that they are willing to play a pregen and just do what they are told. But as soon as they step beyond that in a desire to realize their own concepts, bloat makes their task exponentially more difficult. What the multitude of bad (or meaningless) choices do is confuse and frustrate folks without as much system mastery. And they'll quit (I've seen it happen).

Now, you (the internet reader) may not have any concern over this. You have the luxury (now) of saying, "Forget them, if they don't have the dedication to learn all the ins and outs of the system, they shouldn't be playing." But there is no such thing as a static system. Systems are either growing, or they are shrinking (and this is true in just about every area of life). So, without ease of entry, without expanding its player-base, PF will eventually shrivel away, and we'll all lose all of our options.

Meaningless choices are not choices, they are costs. And you should think long and hard before you advocate more costs become part of playing this game...


Fast Crawl, could that be combined with prone shooter to any use?


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Starbuck_II wrote:
Fast Crawl, could that be combined with prone shooter to any use?

The previously discussed Plains Druid could be a halfling sling sniper with the Swift as Shadows alt racial and move between each attack so they will never find him due to his high stealth and concealment!


chaoseffect wrote:
Starbuck_II wrote:
Fast Crawl, could that be combined with prone shooter to any use?
The previously discussed Plains Druid could be a halfling sling sniper with the Swift as Shadows alt racial and move between each attack so they will never find him due to his high stealth and concealment!

True. But I discourage every build that focus in sniping. Doing 1d3+x of damage per round while avoiding any danger is a fast way to annoy your party members.


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Eirikrautha wrote:

Actually, I have an answer to the question of why bloat matters. It increases the cost of learning the system, and thereby repels potential new players. Teaching someone to play PFS is fine if you have someone so novice that they are willing to play a pregen and just do what they are told. But as soon as they step beyond that in a desire to realize their own concepts, bloat makes their task exponentially more difficult. What the multitude of bad (or meaningless) choices do is confuse and frustrate folks without as much system mastery. And they'll quit (I've seen it happen).

Now, you (the internet reader) may not have any concern over this. You have the luxury (now) of saying, "Forget them, if they don't have the dedication to learn all the ins and outs of the system, they shouldn't be playing." But there is no such thing as a static system. Systems are either growing, or they are shrinking (and this is true in just about every area of life). So, without ease of entry, without expanding its player-base, PF will eventually shrivel away, and we'll all lose all of our options.

Meaningless choices are not choices, they are costs. And you should think long and hard before you advocate more costs become part of playing this game...

Good points! Even someone coming in from 3.5 today will have a relatively easy time picking up the system, but a total noob....paralysis by analysis.

Now I've brought several new players in over the last year or so, but it does have a very big time investment bringing them up to speed and how to make something thats not going to "suck" at the table, especially since I find a lot of new players want to play weaker classes rogues, monks, fighters or on the opposite side things like magus, alchemist and witches. Both are rough to teach a new player, though for completely different reasons.

Its easy for most of us who frequent the boards to say "just ignore it, it obviously is terrible, why would it impact your game", but I suspect most people who frequent the boards have greater system mastery than the vast majority of PF players.


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I alwyas thought the old 1e was the best system to introduce player to d&d. Roll a couple of dices, chose a class, start playing asap.


Alexandros Satorum wrote:
I alwyas thought the old 1e was the best system to introduce player to d&d. Roll a couple of dices, chose a class, start playing asap.

Each edition of D&D are pretty much self contained and have nothing to do with each other mechanically and in their focus (I can't speak for 1E to 2E, but such was my general perception overall), so I don't see how starting at 1E will do more than hinder the new players when you switch them to a more modern system. If you mean new to the concept of tabletop RPGs in general as opposed to the D&D franchise in particular, then I can see your point in regards to the simplicity of character creation.


chaoseffect wrote:
Alexandros Satorum wrote:
I alwyas thought the old 1e was the best system to introduce player to d&d. Roll a couple of dices, chose a class, start playing asap.
Each edition of D&D are pretty much self contained and have nothing to do with each other mechanically and in their focus (I can't speak for 1E to 2E, but such was my general perception overall), so I don't see how starting at 1E will do more than hinder the new players when you switch them to a more modern system. If you mean new to the concept of tabletop RPGs in general as opposed to the D&D franchise in particular, then I can see your point in regards to the simplicity of character creation.

Well, yes, I mean tabletop RPGs in general.


Alexandros Satorum wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
Alexandros Satorum wrote:
I alwyas thought the old 1e was the best system to introduce player to d&d. Roll a couple of dices, chose a class, start playing asap.
Each edition of D&D are pretty much self contained and have nothing to do with each other mechanically and in their focus (I can't speak for 1E to 2E, but such was my general perception overall), so I don't see how starting at 1E will do more than hinder the new players when you switch them to a more modern system. If you mean new to the concept of tabletop RPGs in general as opposed to the D&D franchise in particular, then I can see your point in regards to the simplicity of character creation.
Well, yes, I mean tabletop RPGs in general.

I was a fan of White Wolf for that. Character generation takes all of 5 minutes, especially if you're rolling humans... I had the most fun not being a supernatural creature with World of Darkness.

Shadow Lodge

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chaoseffect wrote:
Alexandros Satorum wrote:
I alwyas thought the old 1e was the best system to introduce player to d&d. Roll a couple of dices, chose a class, start playing asap.
Each edition of D&D are pretty much self contained and have nothing to do with each other mechanically and in their focus (I can't speak for 1E to 2E, but such was my general perception overall)

0e, 1e, 2e, and all the flavors of Basic were all pretty compatible. No harder pulling something out of any of them and putting it into any of the others than between 3.0, 3.5, and PF.


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As far as teamwork goes, the sniping 1d3 + small number character described will do about nothing as the rest of the party is possibly slaughtered. It's on par with your healer refusing to heal or buff anyone but himself and then hiding in the back out of danger because he doesn't want to be hurt once he spent those rounds buffing. Would your players be fine with that? How much fun would they be having with that?

And as far as: "If a feat fits 'your' concept then it is effective," we're just going to talk in circles. I'm going to say, "Why should your character have to be objectively terrible as far as mechanics go in order to fulfill the concept. Doesn't that seem like an issue?" and then I imagine you'll call me a filthy munchkin and tell me how they stoned people like me back in your day. But such is life.

Silver Crusade

MrSin wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
Galley Slave

There's a feat about being a galley slave? And it only gives you a +2 to damage and a profesion on a particular kind of ship!?

That's... pretty niche. and bad.

This is an easy one I will tackle right away. I remember a campaign from a while back in which the only kind of ships that existed were viking ships so if there was a pirate type of campaign going on, this would be a good feat. The biggest problem here, and sticking with my earlier comment, is that just because you don't see a usefulness in a feat doesn't mean one doesn't exist. Some groups have niche campaigns all the time and those people have the right to have access to those feats if they feel it fits the setting and their character, just like you have the right not to select it. I think some people are forgetting what the word "niche" means. Those types of feats are generally designed to fit into a very narrow space.


shallowsoul wrote:
MrSin wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
Galley Slave

There's a feat about being a galley slave? And it only gives you a +2 to damage and a profesion on a particular kind of ship!?

That's... pretty niche. and bad.

This is an easy one I will tackle right away. I remember a campaign from a while back in which the only kind of ships that existed were viking ships so if there was a pirate type of campaign going on, this would be a good feat.

No, its still not a good feat. +2 to damage for one attack in an encounter is pitiful even if its not situational, and +2 to a specific check on a ship is weaker than skill focus will get you and even with skill focus is pretty weak. There are better options for doing damage and for skills. You also have to be a galley slave, which may be a fate worse than death. It doesn't even give you anything interesting.


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shallowsoul wrote:
I think some people are forgetting what the word "niche" means. Those types of feats are generally designed to fit into a very narrow space.

And I would argue that those feats should provide a useful benefit to those snuggled into that tiny space; if you think Galley Slave, a feat that gives +2 to a profession check and en extra +2 damage TOTAL per fight is worth a feat in any context, then I think your standards are way too low. We just aren't going to see eye to eye here, so I think I'm done.


chaoseffect wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
I think some people are forgetting what the word "niche" means. Those types of feats are generally designed to fit into a very narrow space.
And I would argue that those feats should provide a useful benefit to those snuggled into that tiny space; if you think Galley Slave, a feat that gives +2 to a profession check and en extra +2 damage TOTAL per fight is worth a feat in any context, then I think your standards are way too low.

I... have to agree. I mean, I could see it having more use if it at least did something interesting, but its actually objectively worse than a lot of other choices mechanically. I mean, I could see it being useful if it helped you move on a ship or use particular objects that would be on a ship, but no, its 2 numbers, one of which is pitiful, and the other is less than another bonus to another feat that gives a bonus to skill checks.

Luckily this is one of the worst examples.

shallowsoul wrote:
Some groups have niche campaigns all the time and those people have the right to have access to those feats if they feel it fits the setting and their character, just like you have the right not to select it.

No one said you had to or can't take these feats. They might tell they're mechanical value though, which is entirely objective. Another thing to consider is that they could have been better. They are of low quality. Imagine if this did more, imagine if it really helped your life on a ship or bringing those talents outside of a ship. Imagine if all feats actually brought new and interesting options to the table like that, so you could have your flavor, represent it, and receive a real bonus for it in both ability and capability. That's not what this feat does though. It gives you 2 bonuses, both of which are less than other options.

Doesn't help to argue they are great things instead of asking for better. It is not just the fact you get options, but the quality of those options.


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Remember folks; "the load" is a role in the party that can be played.


chaoseffect wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
I think some people are forgetting what the word "niche" means. Those types of feats are generally designed to fit into a very narrow space.
And I would argue that those feats should provide a useful benefit to those snuggled into that tiny space; if you think Galley Slave, a feat that gives +2 to a profession check and en extra +2 damage TOTAL per fight is worth a feat in any context, then I think your standards are way too low. We just aren't going to see eye to eye here, so I think I'm done.

I often feel this way too on these boards.


Some people will always defend the indefensible.

Niche options, even powerful ones, will always be less appealing than those with more general utility. And this isn't even a powerful option, in fact it's absolutely pathetic. Even the piddling bonus to Profession: Sailor only works on a specific type of ship. It's sad reflection of what some people think a feat slot is worth.

Or it's a deliberate trap option.

Put it this way, if you wanted to be a better combatant or better at a skill or both, you have a LOT of feats in line ahead of this one.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Caedwyr wrote:
Remember folks; "the load" is a role in the party that can be played.

I would rather not play, than play with such a PC.

I play to have fun, not have a bad time.


blackbloodtroll wrote:
Caedwyr wrote:
Remember folks; "the load" is a role in the party that can be played.

I would rather not play, than play with such a PC.

I play to have fun, not have a bad time.

The trick is to not know your being the load. Ignorance is bliss.


MrSin wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:
Caedwyr wrote:
Remember folks; "the load" is a role in the party that can be played.

I would rather not play, than play with such a PC.

I play to have fun, not have a bad time.

The trick is to not know your being the load. Ignorance is bliss.

As long as YOU are having fun then you did right!

Silver Crusade

Athaleon wrote:

Some people will always defend the indefensible.

Niche options, even powerful ones, will always be less appealing than those with more general utility. And this isn't even a powerful option, in fact it's absolutely pathetic. Even the piddling bonus to Profession: Sailor only works on a specific type of ship. It's sad reflection of what some people think a feat slot is worth.

Or it's a deliberate trap option.

Put it this way, if you wanted to be a better combatant or better at a skill or both, you have a LOT of feats in line ahead of this one.

Now the part about it being a trap on purpose is what I don't get. Do you honestly think the designers are sitting around contemplating how many players they can get to fall into their trap? Muwhahaahahahahaha!


shallowsoul wrote:
Athaleon wrote:

Some people will always defend the indefensible.

Niche options, even powerful ones, will always be less appealing than those with more general utility. And this isn't even a powerful option, in fact it's absolutely pathetic. Even the piddling bonus to Profession: Sailor only works on a specific type of ship. It's sad reflection of what some people think a feat slot is worth.

Or it's a deliberate trap option.

Put it this way, if you wanted to be a better combatant or better at a skill or both, you have a LOT of feats in line ahead of this one.

Now the part about it being a trap on purpose is what I don't get. Do you honestly think the designers are sitting around contemplating how many players they can get to fall into their trap? Muwhahaahahahahaha!

It may not be deliberate, but I'd love to hear your thoughts on the Totem Warrior archetype for the Barbarian.


shallowsoul wrote:
Athaleon wrote:

Some people will always defend the indefensible.

Niche options, even powerful ones, will always be less appealing than those with more general utility. And this isn't even a powerful option, in fact it's absolutely pathetic. Even the piddling bonus to Profession: Sailor only works on a specific type of ship. It's sad reflection of what some people think a feat slot is worth.

Or it's a deliberate trap option.

Put it this way, if you wanted to be a better combatant or better at a skill or both, you have a LOT of feats in line ahead of this one.

Now the part about it being a trap on purpose is what I don't get. Do you honestly think the designers are sitting around contemplating how many players they can get to fall into their trap? Muwhahaahahahahaha!

I dont think it's likely in this case, but it really was the third edition philosophy according to Monte Cook. Throw out a range of options with a few good ones and a lot of bad ones, and the good players will be rewarded.

Silver Crusade

I just looked at Gallery Slave and the ship types are not as narrow as some of you make it out to be. The ship must have oars and rowers which widens the gap a bit. Even ships with sails would sometimes have to rely on sailors using oars to move them.

This feat would be okay if the whole party had it, or a bunch of NPC's had it and they all were attacking. Let's say you were up against 8 pirate enemies, that's an extra 16 points of damage in the beginning round of combat.


Scavion wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:
Athaleon wrote:

Some people will always defend the indefensible.

Niche options, even powerful ones, will always be less appealing than those with more general utility. And this isn't even a powerful option, in fact it's absolutely pathetic. Even the piddling bonus to Profession: Sailor only works on a specific type of ship. It's sad reflection of what some people think a feat slot is worth.

Or it's a deliberate trap option.

Put it this way, if you wanted to be a better combatant or better at a skill or both, you have a LOT of feats in line ahead of this one.

Now the part about it being a trap on purpose is what I don't get. Do you honestly think the designers are sitting around contemplating how many players they can get to fall into their trap? Muwhahaahahahahaha!
It may not be deliberate, but I'd love to hear your thoughts on the Totem Warrior archetype for the Barbarian.

I think that specific example was just the devs writing up some fluff to go with these cool new rage powers.

Now Crossbowman.... that's an archetype worth shaming.

Silver Crusade

blackbloodtroll wrote:
Caedwyr wrote:
Remember folks; "the load" is a role in the party that can be played.

I would rather not play, than play with such a PC.

I play to have fun, not have a bad time.

Then I would recommend sticking with a like minded group.


shallowsoul wrote:
This feat would be okay if the whole party had it, or a bunch of NPC's had it and they all were attacking. Let's say you were up against 8 pirate enemies, that's an extra 16 points of damage in the beginning round of combat.

That's still pretty pitiful. Its 16 split out 2 times. You know what might hurt more? Weapon focus. Or weapon specialization if your a higher level and they're all fighters for some reason. How about weapon finesse if their dex based? Or power attack if they're using two handed weapons. Skill focus(Acrobatics) to move on the uneven surface of the ships in a nasty environment the DM set up. Lots of better options, still. Not sure if being a pirate makes you a galley slave anyway.

The fact you can find a moment when it applies doesn't actually make it good, much less a good thing. Doesn't even have a fluff to explain why being a galley slave makes you better at hitting people.

I get the feeling this might go on for a while.

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