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Feature Lock

Discussion in 'General' started by Bluedrake42, Oct 17, 2015.

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  1. Bluedrake42 Trainee Engineer

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    Content creators as in Youtubers, Streamers, and community owners.

    Also yes they can absolutely put up a download link to an outdated client and they're done. I've worked with hundreds of developers on hundreds of projects and this is something that has been done countless times. Its something that Minecraft does, Insurgency does, Squad does, and a myriad of other early access games do. They don't have any overarching server structure to worry about, everything is hosted either by the community or by individuals. There is already a system that recognizes version mismatches when attempting to join a server. They could do this. Easily.

    If I wanted to I could save a previous version of the game right now, have my friend do the same, and when a patch comes out we could launch our previous versions and play a multiplayer match using a backup. Its simple. Its possible. It actually already exists in some fashion. Your condescending attitude doesn't change the reality of the situation.
     
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  2. Bluedrake42 Trainee Engineer

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    If a 16 year old boy can do it for his game (Unturned) then I'd like to think its something a larger development studio could do as well. Do you just not understand Steam's development build system at all or are you feigning ignorance to spite me?
     
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  3. Sarekh Senior Engineer

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    1,178
    It's really quite simple, friend! And it's not only the Steam side of the releases, you know that. You and maybe other players want something to be changed - namely the operations of branching and releasing and thus a very important part of the development cycle of this game. Because - you know, this would be just it - if you have worked in 100drs of projects (btw. that IS quite impressive - I've been working in game development for years now and people that are MUCH older than me have maybe a few dozen projects on their CV - even the devs that worked outside the gaming industry - you must be some timelord! Or the projects have been rather tiny in which case your experience would not be quite as relevant as wanted for this matter) you know that this will cause loads of work. It's not just the one outdated version. It's keeping the outdated version stable, putting new outtated versions online (that's a box of pandora you're asking for.. everyone will want their on outdated version) and there will have to be someone creating different stable branches that do not interfere with the current game version but are still updateable ALL THE TIME.

    Then people will complain about their saves not being playable on the newest version because they always played on an old version, people will complain about MP not working so someone shall do something about that and people will want bugfixing for their old versions.

    That's... not very feasible. So, to come back to where it is very simple: Keen will not do it. No matter how hard you want it. It would not be a strategically wise decision for the company. The only person benefitting from that would be you. You are, however, not relevant to the game dev cycle.
     
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  4. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    Here we are for another of those "uninformed complaints" thread...

    Someone has clearly not been around to see the main title of the last updates. It says "Bugfixing" on them. That's equal to "polishing" and "feature freeze", if you didn't know. That it doesn't give you the results you expect is totally logic given that the game doesn't even have its final networking code implemented yet, as well as many other things.


    Key words here in bold print tell one thing (and it's a real fact), that you don't actually have any solid information on what you're claiming. That makes your arguments completely empty. Void, null, useless. It's like me saying you're working for the company that makes Empyrion, that wants SE to go down because they're rivals. It's bullshit of course. But based on the same thing: rumours and feelings, not real tested and checked information. That's what I hate about threads like yours, that they're just based on raw irrational feelings (not counting the bugs, which we all know are real).


    Well, games with a dynamic development are subject to saves being broken at one point or another. Specially when the core of the game changes so drastically in some patches. It even happens from time to time with released final games that get patches post-release, why shouldn't it happen with a game that still has placeholder models all around?


    Keen doesn't force you. Want a stable version? Uncheck the automatic updates in Steam, and coordinate with your buddies to do the same. If you hate updates so much, why have them checked? That's just lazy.
    Opposite to this, I don't want YOU people forcing ME to use outdated versions to be able to play MP if some day I feel like it just because. See, I'm also lazy. :)
    Also, I don't want you to force Keen to look for additional ways to get bug reports from reduced tester groups, which we all know don't work as well. Because content creators like the one that made SE Tetris will not be testing their experiments on a DevBuild, and so, its limits will not be pushed far enough, and when the stable version gets released, people will complain anyways because of bugs that were not caught by the reduced testing group.


    Hey! We're giving you our own feedback, we're as entitled to that as you are to giving your opinion (I try not to be insulting though, I don't need rage in the game, or out of it). Free speech. So much so, that you're entitled to ignore us as well. That's the good of it working both ways.


    So, in my opinion as both user and developer, all these issues, come only from lack of knowledge and patience to understand the status of this game. And before anyone asks, no, I'm not an "SP fanboy". I play SP, but mostly because I know the current status of MP, so instead of uselessly raging about something that won't be stable, I have fun in the other ways the game offers me, but I've been playing a bit this week with a buddy of mine, and I've had to reset a few times, so I know there are issues, but I understand them, I don't go all crazy with impossible plans or projects.
    Also, from what I gathered on your video, you're basically pushing the limits of the bad netcode the game has (I think I counted at least 5 different people connected, maybe more, and the big ships with all sorts of stuff on them, like sensors), so it blows up, nothing new there.
    You even got Tomas Psenicka to answer you about how things will be better, not everyone gets that kind of direct customized counter-feedback, you should consider yourself lucky.

    Anyway, gotta tell you, love however you are making the voice chat sound as if it was a radio. Looks cool and all.

    Cheers
     
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  5. GrindyGears Senior Engineer

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    1,787
    My question is: Why would you want to create content using outdated versions? If a new feature is added (albeit buggy), wouldn't they want to showcase them to better entice people into getting the game? It could be just that one feature that tips it in someones favor to purchase it.

    Given that they release a update every week i'd ask "so what? its broken for a week..." Many game breaking bugs get fixed because it forces people to update and find them, if people just become turtles in an old version it becomes more difficult to find and smash the bugs, many of which might be a very oddly specific configuration that causes issues.

    Development branches are great when you are making major changes that fundamentally changes how the game works, but for the typically smaller updates that keen put out it seems like a unneeded amount of extra work.

    Also your use of "scope creep" kinda irked me. i work in an engineering office and know all too well that scope creep can cripple a project, both financially and dead line wise. I'm fairly certain keen has a road map in place, they just aren't sharing it with us because that's actually more likely to add to scope creep. for all we know most of the game was laid out ages ago and they've been working toward it.

    Looking at your account i can see you've been here like 2 years but half your posts are in this thread... so why wait until now to bring this up?
     
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  6. Dreokor Senior Engineer

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    1,606
    And now you're a programming expert :rolleyes:, cant say I havent seen discussions go like this before.....

    So if you can do it already, why you dont do it? I'm pretty sure content creators are aware of that, then why dont they do it? Have you asked yourself that?
    Oh and for hosting an additional client, I'm pretty sure steam charges.
     
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  7. Sarekh Senior Engineer

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    1,178
    Can I give you all my interwebz for today? Because the like-button only works once.
     
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  8. Bluedrake42 Trainee Engineer

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    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/38532121/Screenshot 2015-10-17 18.44.28.png

    Thanks so much to Keen for having more maturity and respect for the situation than either myself or the rest of this forum community.

    I'm hoping that after everyone here takes a long step away from this we can all come back to have meaningful and constructive conversations on how to improve this game.

    The vicious attitude isn't going to get anyone anywhere.
     
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  9. Dreokor Senior Engineer

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    1,606
    So, you can ask them for a branch, you basicly made a rage-filled whinning thread for absolutely nothing.
     
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  10. Vgr Trainee Engineer

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    98
    Let me explain how a development cycle goes, with feature addition and bug-fixing.

    So, first, someone gets an idea, and one or multiple developers start working on it. They draw a draft, test it, polish it up, work on it until it runs, they test a little (because time is precious for a programmer, and that is why most programmers don't test their code). Then when it's stable they release it, and call that "Update Alpha 01.100" for example. That's one phase of development, and that's adding a feature in the program.

    Next, someone finds and reports a bug. The report is always complete with the faulty lines, a detailed error message, and the code needed to fix it. No, really, it doesn't. A bug report just tells the programmer "something doesn't work in some circumstances". Then they have to work to find the cause and work even more to find how to fix it. That can take a while; for an unrelated program I develop with some other people, we collectively spent months upon months to find the cause of a very specific bug, and never did. This bug has since been resolved, keep on reading to know how.

    Now, when a programmer changes code, not only the five lines he changed will actually change. For example, a very large part of the program could depend on those few lines. The output could be off by a byte due to some error for example (this happens often among unexperienced programmers, less so in large codebases). Whatever the cause, they'll then fix this. It will work, and then time will move on. Then, you find out another, closely-related bug in another place. You track back, and finally fix said bug. You test that case, and see it works just fine, so you commit it and push it to update.

    Then, someone reopens that one issue you closed a few weeks back, saying that the bug you fixed by changing those five lines earlier is now broken again. It turns out, that last fix you did would have also fixed the first case, and your fix in the first case now actually breaks the code. So then you go and revert that change.

    After that, you need to add a new feature, but it requires some refactoring. No problem, some regex matches and replaces for all files, proof-check for syntax errors (there are none! Be happy!), then you move on, add that new feature, test all what you can think would break, fix all the bugs you find, commit and push.

    A few days after the update was made live, you get a bug report for something that you know for a fact worked just fine before - you're the one who made that, and you tested the specific case that is reported broken back when it was added. Turns out that refactor you did to ease the addition of the new feature actually broke that code which worked fine before. How many other bugs were added due to this? Only time will tell.

    It's also true of the opposite. Sometimes new features requiring a refactor may fix bugs you previously had. That is how the bug I talked about earlier was fixed - when I added a new feature in.

    In other words, any code change can break something. Sometimes that thing is far off the original source, and a code change that fixes something may break another. That's how programming goes, and it's a common misunderstanding that, in every case, adding a new feature will never affect existing stuff.

    Hope this helped. Please note that I am not attacking anyone here, I am just stating how software development goes.

    -Vgr
     
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  11. Bluedrake42 Trainee Engineer

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    50
    They got in touch with me because I made this thread. Drop the poor attitude. Its getting on my nerves.
     
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  12. Sarekh Senior Engineer

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    That glove was picked up rather quickly, right?
     
  13. Dreokor Senior Engineer

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    Poor attitude? You're the one screaming bloody murder for something that you could've just e-mailed them for.

    And they were still nice, unlike you.
     
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  14. Bluedrake42 Trainee Engineer

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    Maybe our definition of bloody murder isn't the same. Anyways thanks for your all's input on the matter, however unsavory it was. Thanks to Keen for their professionalism and responsiveness. Looking forward to seeing what's to come.

    Also really excited about planets either way. Not going to lie.

    I'll be seeing myself out now. Enjoy yourselves.
     
  15. Thedevistator Senior Engineer

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    1,942
    Well that was nice of them. I do agree people have become a bit too hostile on the forums and the Internet, but I can't blame them because it's a hostile place. Nice to see the devs can still be nice though.
     
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  16. Dreokor Senior Engineer

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    If anyting I've learned a lot from this.

    (so they do have branches hmm....)
     
  17. BardTale Apprentice Engineer

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    @Bluedrake42 Hey bud. I remember ya now. Way back when in Maelstrom, you was doing live twitch feeds while playing SE. Unfortunately, people stream sniped you. I was the leader of the Peacekeepers.
     
  18. Thedevistator Senior Engineer

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    1,942
    I think the people who have spent tons of time on these forums should try taking a 1 - 3 week break from the majority of the SE community stuff like the forums. I think everyone is too edgy and a break would be good. A break did wonders for me I can talk on these forums calmly now.
     
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  19. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    1,110
    You'd call an irrational feeling-driven venting constructive?
    Seriously, I understand people being frustrated by bugs, but if you all applied logic, then you wouldn't lose patience, time, or money.
    I wouldn't have any problem at all with people putting out their problems in a serious, rational, and feelings-free way, even if they repeated it a 1000 times. But when you all start with the "it seems keen doesn't know to code properly", "a 16 y.o. could do it", or "keen's gonna make me go bankrupt" kind of statements, one can only mock said people.

    Then again, I don't rage about the game not working because, (*alarms blaring*) I totally know the game is not finished, its development cycle is more dynamic than air itself, and it has "Early Access" warnings stamped about everywhere when you buy it (unless you bought it in one of those instant key shops). It'd be irrational and illogical of me to complain when I chose to expose myself to an unfinished game.

    Cheers
     
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  20. Taemien Apprentice Engineer

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    468
    The reason why you are getting the responses you are is because of your tone and your false statements. For example, you started this thread telling Keen how they should develop their game. You didn't give feedback, you didn't give a suggestion. You made a rude thread telling them how to do their job and profession. Think about it, hire a contractor do fix/build something around your home. Then follow them around and try to tell them how to hammer a nail or put in a screw. Chances are.. they'd do like I said I would have done as a game dev, give you back your deposit and leave. However they probably would have been polite about it.

    The next example is your statement on the game losing players. Where did you get this idea? I just checked the stats for Steam and the number of players in April was 5400 peak. Today it was nearly 5800. We've gained 400 players on steam in 4 months. That's not a loss. That's a gain.

    Respect is given when earned. You've been rude to the developers and the community from the very start. Hence the response you've received. Look at what you said in your OP:

    That is what you started the thread with. You knew what you were going to say next was wrong. You're not innocent in this. I don't agree with how others have decided to attack you (and the rest of you should knock it off). But don't act like the innocent victim.
     
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  21. SirLANsalot Apprentice Engineer

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    "game breaking bugs" is an overused and over prescribed term used by the un-educated masses. A game braking bug is one that prevents you from being able to actually play the game, no not lag because your computer is shit, that is on you, not the game. Nor is you building something the game cannot handle and hence crashes, that is on you and your hardware, not the game. A Game Breaking Bug is one that stops you from being able to actually load and play the game, or game mode (aka Assembler bug or Conveyor bug).

    It is best to leave any massive or major building projects, on the back burner until we reach Beta or even Release. At the very least, work on them in Creative and not Survival, in creative you can easily replace or fix any issues that might have come up due to an update. And as always, never get too attached to any one project you are working on, because it just might vanish or break the next Thursday and in the case it does break, rebuild it, better, faster, stronger then before (my designs always get better each time I make them because i find a way to make it better when rebuilding it).
     
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  22. Sinbad Senior Engineer

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    2,788
    the state of the game at the moment:
    every single block, its look, its functionality, its physics, its resource costs, its very existance, is a place holder. they are only there to test the above properties.
    every single game mechanic, gravity, speed caps, intertia, moments of torque, grid interactions, oxygen, mining refining and fabrication, construction, are all placeholders exploring different ways of acomplishing the above.
    the UI is a place holder even.

    we are playing a game full of cardboard cutouts with 'insert a block sort of like this' scribbled on them with pencil.
    there is already evidence in the source that the current placeholder thrusters are being replaced with prototypes of final objects.
    as with refineries and assemblers.
    as with oxygen components.

    there is a major feature explosion pending. I suspect that a lot of bug fixing has been put off because its known that the final assets won't be subject to the bugs. the benefit of place holders is that it allows you to identify bugs, then eliminate them writing the final assets, rather than patching the place holders.
     
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  23. Ceztu Apprentice Engineer

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    138
    One thing I wonder. If, as the OP says Keen should polish their game and not add content, than WHEN should they add content?

    The game is in development for two years now, and we haven't left alpha yet. With every upedate there are people saying they should just bugfix and forget about content. If Keen would have developed Space Engineer in a fashion that every upedate would run smooh with almost no bugs than the time for an update would probably atleast tripple, as they would polish the code than break it with the next patch just to polish it again. Which mean we probably wouldn't even have "infinite" universe about now. Wait for oxygen coming next year! Planets? Oh, those things. You can tell your grandchildren about those.

    Than people would leave because of lack of interest and we would have you make "We need more content, stop bugfixing!" threads instead of these ones.
     
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  24. Taemien Apprentice Engineer

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    468
    You make an interesting point. Though many people here just don't understand development cycles. And even when they do, they don't understand that different teams do developments differently. There's a lot of players here that wonder why SE is still in Alpha after two years. To know that is to know what Alpha means. Alpha is the phase of adding features. They add features until they they are done with their list. The list.. well we don't know what's on the list. And because this is an early access game, Keen doesn't even know what's on the list.

    Take planets for example, it wasn't on their minds. But then one of their coder's had a epiphany. They figured out how to make it work. I've done that before on my own project. My team brainstorms once a week in an informal scrum session. I get asked if x feature can get implemented based on what we know, what we have, and what we can get. I've had at least half a dozen features I've said 'we cannot do'. But then a few months later, I figure it out by accident or just find a method to make it work.

    Then you have mods and other ideas from the early access players and coding contributions since the game went open source. That opened up features they didn't even think of. Now we're getting those too. Its an organic process that's relatively new. This goes a bit beyond normal agile development.

    But people like the OP like to get impatient. They get set in their ways, they like sitting inside of a box. They're irritated when their world is disturbed. These players shouldn't get into early access. This is a new venue that some development teams do well with (like KSW) and some don't. But regardless, no one should tell anyone how to do their job. I guarantee the OP would NEVER do that to a carpenter, plumber, mechanic, or even a fast food server. So I wonder why they would do it here. Probably can be attributed to anonymity of the internet.
     
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  25. fourthquantum Senior Engineer

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    1,286
    The bug fixing period we've been experiencing recently has probably been focused on optimisation for the introduction of planets. This may mean they've had to redesign certain aspects of the game code which can cause more bugs. It also doesn't help that they will be developing two separate development cycles of the game (released and internal version).

    We have more bugs because they are optimising the game.
     
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  26. chrisb Senior Engineer

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    1,460
    Hi Keen.

    I haven't got any YT followers (subs), possibly because my videos are so bad, but still :(.
    However, I thought I would give it a try anyway, can I have planets for this coming Thursday, you can pm me here with an answer, if you like (try and keep it civil :p).
    I may not carry much weight YT wise, but I do play the game and I would be grateful.:D

    Well, you just never know. ;)

    Got to be worth a try..
     
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  27. Hiramas Apprentice Engineer

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    121
    A beta dev branch wouldn't be the worst thing...
    Push an update to the beta branch, let People try it, hotfix it, push it to the public branch a week later.
    That would have kept the amount of unplayable time to a Minimum.
    Regarding the development and going on what Marek Rosa said in interviews, I'd guess that this game is getting planets and netcode and will go beta with that, if not on a very straight road to release.
     
  28. entspeak Senior Engineer

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    1,744
    How would a dev branch work with regard to mods? On the one hand, I can see a benefit in that modders will be able to test mods before a stable branch release, but published mods would have to be limited to stable releases or there will be tremendous confusion and frustration - as a fix for dev branch may break a stable version and vice versa. DX11/DX9 has already splintered the mods as it is, with many mods not working in DX11.

    A dev branch may be nice, but catering to content providers in early access is a dangerous precedent. Content creators agreed to the same thing we did when they bought the game. So, while a dev branch may be a good thing, doing it simply to appease streamers makes little sense to me. "Give us feature lock because I'm a YouTuber and can't make the kind of content I want with your alpha" just sounds entitled and ridiculous. And, of course Keen will approach this more diplomatically and "professionally", they are a business and the OP is a customer. Will he get what he wants? No guarantee. This went down as it usually does... bitch, talk about leaving the community, get a reasonable response from the company and suddenly it's all cool again. Rinse, repeat.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2015
  29. Mix-martes86 Senior Engineer

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    1,110
    As Master of Code, I also request this merciful opportunity to broadcast some love out into the universe. With planets on the channel, I went from 0 views/video to 1000 views/video, and then again to 0 when I stopped, so it's an effective way. Or at least, send me PlanetGeneratorDefinitions.sbc to keep trying my hand with the source. :p

    Cheers
     
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  30. Bluedrake42 Trainee Engineer

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    50
    Development branches were released today. Thank you Keen.
     
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