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ROSS'S GAME DUNGEON: THE CREW

Ross does America with The Crew.

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This is a blog post. To read the original post, please click here »

 

 

 

 

Here is the next Game Dungeon after a long hiatus! This turned into one of the more ambitious episodes I've done. I'm generally happy with how it came out, in fact, this one might be my favorite "non-weird game" episode. I think in the future I may have to scale down Game Dungeon a little bit one way or another, just so there's more time for the movie. The one thing I don't want to sacrifice is the writing, however, so that should remain consistent regardless. Writing is often the easiest part of making these videos actually.

 

I cut some more material that was going to be in here, some of which I may use in a follow-up episode later on. Also, while I'm not in a situation to have play sessions with fans currently, at some point in the future, I'd be interested in trying a group road trip with fans in The Crew on PC. I figure at least some people have it since I announced when it was free back in 2016 on twitter. I can't even imagine how the game would handle 100 or so people all in the same place. It could be it would just glitch out, but it would be interesting to try out.

 

Anything can happen the way things are at the moment, but assuming things don't change, I hope to have more videos this month.

 

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This game feels like it was made by people who hate videogames.

 

I never understood why the lighting in The Crew looks so awful, Watch Dogs had the same issues.

https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/uploads/gallery/album_34/gallery_371_34_500592.jpg

https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/uploads/gallery/album_34/gallery_371_34_168530.jpg

 

Why the hell would anyone pick "grey" and "blue" as their main colors is beyond me. Every time I notice a game with an all "grey" lighting scheme, I'm not sure if the people who work on these are just, completely incompetent, have no clue what good lighting actually looks like, or, have these people been stuck for song long in their, dull, grey offices, to the point where, they straight up forgot, what stepping outside actually looks like.

 

Then there's games like Mafia 3, which literally look like nicotine.

http://i.imgur.com/bBhd6IG.jpg

 

What the hell, I look like a chronic smoker, who can never stop smoking, ever.

 

I also hate these permanently wet roads, they just look awful. And The Crew 2 has the same lighting issues anyway, the day time still looks pretty bad.

https://steamuserimages-a.akamaihd.net/ugc/250337591471583793/51ABE4A0A8277214E9B3670B482AFAA6A7DAC032/

 

I don't understand why AAA titles just, hate having actual choices in them.

It's like the Deus Ex Human Revolution\Need For Speed Most Wanted piss filters. Fuck you guys, we know better than you.

 

Or that horrible Battlefield 3 color filter.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/3Asqn9SNTnk/maxresdefault.jpg

 

WHY BLUE??? WHY DOES EVERYTHING NEED TO BE SMEARED IN BLUE, GREY, OR BROWN??? DO YOU HATE COLORS SO MUCH???

 

I hope you guys like the color BROWN.

https://apollo2.dl.playstation.net/cdn/EP0006/CUSA00168_00/FREE_CONTENTsvxlDPi6Ez1kVh7sRGgl/PREVIEW_SCREENSHOT10_417070.jpg

 

(I was really strugging to find a good shot, bear with me)

 

HEY LOOK GUYS, A GOOD ART STYLE.

https://screens.latestscreens.com/xbox360/screenshots/overstrike/os_dalton_01.jpg

 

I KNOW, LET'S SMEAR BROWN AND ORANGE ALL OVER IT.

https://gamingbolt.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/FUSE_new-4.jpg

 

Oops.

 

It feels like nobody on the development team ever actually plays their games. Maybe people who work on these are just, that incompetent.

 

These people are so afraid of breaking that same mold, to the point where, they keep making the same mistakes, over and over again.

I don't really get it.

 

Thank god we are over the bloom craze.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/9fyafFcVGas/maxresdefault.jpg

 

Now we have the smear depth of field and chromatic aberration over every single fucking corner craze.

https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/3nF2yRfMBKqHKHpxqLDFmj.jpg

 

In the case of Life is Strange Before the Storm, I was at least able to get rid of it.

But sadly I can't do that with every game, so it's chromatic aberration for everyone, yaay?

http://ratchet302.gitlab.io/games/l/life-is-strange-before-the-storm/tweaking/images/gallery/index/1.jpg

http://ratchet302.gitlab.io/games/l/life-is-strange-before-the-storm/tweaking/images/gallery/index/2.jpg

 

I mean for fucks sake, when a PlayStation 2 game, has better lighting than you billion dollar, high tech game, you ARE doing something wrong.

Gran-Turismo-3-Calsonic-Skyline-JGTC-860x484.png

(hey look you can see during night time)

 

ssx.jpg

 

Sure it's not dynamic, it's baked, it's static, BUT IT SURE AS HELL LOOKS NICE.

 

Sorry I couldn't find any better screenshots, but Gran Turismo 3 and SSX look gorgeous, if you play them at proper resolutions, even when compared to The Crew. If you can't beat a decade old PS2 game, you are really fucking something up. I grew in the PlayStation 2 era, and, I don't know, I just notice these things and it pisses me off, BECAUSE GAMES USED TO LOOK BETTER.

 

Less impressive sure, but they sure as hell looked a whole lot better.

Every AAA game is so inconsistent nowdays, you have scenes which look jaw dropping, and nearly perfect, and then day time hits and you are like, "what the fuck happened here".

 

Do they just give up halfway through while working on these? I know the working conditions aren't the greatest, but I just don't get a lot of these design choices, if anything it ends up being more work, it feels like such a huge paradox. You are wasting extra development time, on these filters, and on all these extra effects, when most of the playerbase, will probably just turn them off anyway, to get the game's natural look.

 

You can throw all the tech you want into a game, but if at the end of the day, smearing a color filter is the solution to all your issues, then you might as well just give up, why even bother have lighting, just make everything grey, who cares.

 

Maybe I'm just a giant wierdo, but I'll take games with worse polycounts, if it means that I can have my colors. All I care about game graphics is, does it look nice and colorful? Does it run well?

 

I don't care about 99% of post process effects, I just turn them off, even ambient occlusion often looks like shit, so I just turn it off anyway.

 

I just like colorful games, that's all. Not No Man's Sky colorful, please no. TOO MUCH COLOR.

 

Don't do this please. This is garbage. It looks like someone's art project, turned wrong. It's like someone threw their art project in the garbage, took it out, exposed it in a museum, and then charged you 59.99$ for the ticket just to see it, in all it's crap "glory". Sure, thanks?

 

I can't get a refund on this, my eyes are already bleeding. I can never erase this memory from now on.

 

https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/uploads/gallery/album_87/gallery_371_87_560062.png

https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/uploads/gallery/album_87/gallery_371_87_1431490.png

https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/uploads/gallery/album_87/gallery_371_87_2111554.png

https://community.pcgamingwiki.com/uploads/gallery/album_87/gallery_371_87_4659647.gif

 

(Why would anyone think that looks good?...)

 

I have so many questions... This is just garbage. Seriously look at it.

a6D99mz.jpg

 

Sometimes, I just hate videogames. Why can't we all be happy.

 

I need to play some Taz Wanted, I need some graphics eye bleach.

 

(Big Photo)

 

66428-Taz_Wanted-4.jpg66428-Taz_Wanted-5.jpg

 

 

I'll take these graphics, over No Man's Sky, any day. With some anti aliasing, this looks really nice.

Like, I'd be 100% fine with static lighting, I really don't care that much. Ooooh the shadows move, WOOOOO.

 

WHO CARES, YOU GAME IS ONLY ONE COLOR ANYWAY. WHY DO YOU HATE COLORS, SO MUCH???

 

Triple AAA Industry: FUCK YOUR COLORS! hey wanna buy some dlc kid

 

can i buy the "give me my colors back" dlc please

 

actually no, yes? maybe?

 

can i have the "please don't kill this game forever because it absolutelly makes no fucking sense" dlc, can we get the "stop making games online fucking only" expansion pack

 

Guess I'm never playing any games ever again. Literally, if I were to stop playing for a decade, all games would suddenly be gone.

 

WHERE DID THE GAMES GO?.... who knooowwwwws .... OOOOohhhhhhh

Where did the colors go? Probably in DLC hell. Sorry, we lost the colors, online only. You know, the usual.

 

fukc vido gmes - some AAA guy, probably (2028)

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Posted (edited)

Love drives the hate race

 

Love/hate relationships with games leave... strong impressions. Often you can never shake them, even years later, and the thoughts they arouse don't make sense.

 

Not being able to go back to some of these games would feel like a big loss to me. I try to archive them, but there's only so much I can do.

 

GTA:San Andreas has some nice driving moments. Turn the HUD off and go out on your own during the night. Meander up mount chiliad in a ute, police trying to follow you but instead tumbling off the road as you listen to

on the country radio station.

 

The best thing I have discovered to do in any video game with driving: turn off the damned minimap. I end up playing these games "through the minimap" and find it impossible to appreciate the driving. I don't ever learn to navigate on my own either. Even if turning off the minimap completely breaks the game, it's worth it.

 

 

 

Encoding issues with this video

 

On the topic of love/hate relationships: this video. The content is great, but the video itself is difficult to watch for extended periods.

 

 

 

I can tolerate low quality video fine. But the oscillating quality levels popping in and out every few seconds on loop gave me a headache. All of the footage of The Crew in this video is like this.

 

Here are another representative pair of consecutive frames, minus the gif paletting:

 

 

 

I was wondering if this is what youtube is normally like and I only just started noticing today. Then the video switched to carma 2 and it felt like a smoky haze had lifted.

 

 

 

Youtube's current codec config just seems completely incapable of handling The Crew. Bitrate exhaustion causing the motion prediction to give up?

 

The x264 (AVC) version of the video has this problem, the vp9 version does not. If you have the option I recommend watching the vp9 (webm) version:

 

...
137          mp4        1920x1080  1080p 5136k , avc1.640028, 30fps, video only, 1.28GiB
248          webm       1920x1080  1080p 7765k , vp9, 30fps, video only, 898.04MiB
...

 

This second variant is lower quality overall but a tleast it stays consistent. Much easier to watch. The DCT blocks occasionally do a dance, mostly visible as road lines doing a jiggle wiggle, but that's not too bad compared to the dubstep keyframing of the mp4 version.

carma.jpeg.0035533400c2dc06a71d0606f5da52d5.jpeg

hatch.thumb.jpeg.de43e2713756328cfe34af8b575f5a19.jpeg

ute.gif.2ac5a948304bc0222a87f85b49ae2359.gif

Edited by Guest

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oh hey, I just remembered that I made an account on this forum forever ago, and I think I have an interesting thing to point out, so I'll paraphrase the comment I posted on the video here.

 

so I actually live in Roswell, New Mexico, and I gotta say; they kinda blew it. like, geez. this town is kind of dumpy, but it's not THAT rural. hell, if any part of town looks like what the video shew, that would be way off on the outskirts, but the UFO museum (which is totally real, btw) is right in the middle of main street. the game should be showing the MOST urban part of the city.

 

and, also, what the actual fuck is that giant Space Needle-esque tower there? I've lived here my entire life and never seen anything remotely like that. where the hell did they get that from? I genuinely have no idea what that's supposed to be.

 

it's kind of a bummer that they screwed up my town a bit, because the overall aesthetic of the buildings and scenery is absolutely dead on.

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Posted (edited)

Rain and roads

 

There's something really ill-looking about the wet-state roads in this game. They're such perfect mirrors of "not the sky", looking completely stark and alien against the road. Perhaps if they had some diffusion or imperfections to their surface, but as it is they look like glitches. Are we looking into hell? An alternative dimension?

 

Ross: you may have an uncanny valley with the road geometry, but my problem with them is purely non-euclidean.

water.jpeg.7336651c151aeedb981a3e45235413b6.jpeg

Edited by Guest

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You can throw all the tech you want into a game, but if at the end of the day, smearing a color filter is the solution to all your issues, then you might as well just give up, why even bother have lighting, just make everything grey, who cares.

 

I'm in the same boat. Many baked lighting games look way better than dynamic or cyclic ones. Games like HL1 might have blurry textures, but the edges and the lighting are sharp and crisp. Most of all: the game has a theme and character without needing 2D filters or gray-zoning of everything.

 

If you are noticing the lighting constantly, then it's probably bad lighting.

 

Dynamic day/night lighting vs pre-baked lighting is similar to a review I once watched (read?) of the remake of Abe's Oddysee into 3D. The 2d version allowed artists to do a lot more with each panel/scene. The 3D version made everything much more generic, likely because of the greater amount of time and effort involved to make the scenes.

 

Pre-baked lighting lets a dev control everything and fix areas that look bad. Dynamic lighting teaches a dev just to tolerate the bad bits, because there's no global fix that does not cause lighting issues elsewhere.

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Your dude, Rezalon, uploaded this under an hour after you uploaded the video.

This should be your avatar man :P

 

I have to second this, someone should upload this to wallpaper engine.

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Your dude, Rezalon, uploaded this under an hour after you uploaded the video.

This should be your avatar man :P

 

I have to second this, someone should upload this to wallpaper engine.

 

wouldn't it be wierd if someone saw this wierd man on your desktop

 

then he turns around and they get jump scared

 

"im driving, i got videogames, get in"

PuN3gdn.png

 

"i terminate online only games, you will follow, or you will be terminated"

"don't get shutdown, it's time for the showdown"

"nobody is going offline, as long as I'm ONLINE" ("you have been disconnected") "DAMMIT, I knew I should've had a BACKUP PLAN"

"my math homework is late, time to get FAST"

"hope you got me on SPEED DIAL, you won't even hear me"

"speed is my middle name, joe is just who I am"

"slow down, i got an online game with your name on it"

"yes hello? who's this? it's the king of the streets... and he's kinda busy, sorry, call back later"

"always online is not ready for this bad boy"

"our freedom is at stake, follow me, if you can"

"hope you are ready to get some OFFLINE justice served"

"we are here, we are offline, we are united, we are forever"

("Server Offline, Error 591") "guess there's no room for freedom today boys, pack up, or should i say, BACK UP"

"what you looking at? as long as we are here, all games will be here"

"hey, that's a nice ride - too bad you can't drive right now"

"wouldn't it be a shame if this whole country was online only? makes you think, maybe not, who am i to tell you how to think, don't, i don't care"

 

sorry, i got a bit carried away

 

"THIS MIGHT BE A BUMPY RIDE, GET READ-" *user SPEED JOE has been disconnected* *user SPEED JOE has crashed* *save game corrupted, user SPEED JOE erased* *have a nice da- #crash# *

"you better party fast - we are on our way, to the graveyard"

"it's party time, as long as it's offline... online parties are TOO DISCONNECTED FROM REALITY"

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I grew up in Seattle, and I gotta say, they made the roads HUGE. Seattle's roads are infamously tiny and difficult to navigate. I would have loved to see that in a racing game, a sort of puzzle map. I just chock it up to people who've never been to Seattle wanting to base a game there. I don't think I've ever seen Seattle accurately portrayed in a movie or videogame. But then, maybe they just wanted to make a racing game fun, as I doubt it would be any fun racing around real seattle.

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What kind of hurts is that Ubisoft has proven that it is totally able to make really really nice nighttime settings before in The Division, which makes every other one of their games look like trash when they're in a similar setting by comparison.

 

SqnsGoQ.jpg

 

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That was THE BEST delivery I've heard of someone saying he just wants to see people rolling up his hood.

I really like how sometimes you can see glimpses of darkness behind Ross's normally easy-going and good-hearted demeanor.

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RaTcHeT302: Great post. It's honestly epidemic. I could understand if it was an indie game trying to be more artsy, but these are behemoths with budgets of tens of millions of dollars. I'm still amazed the devs for Battlefield 3 said they would ban people fixing the color with the mod, like I mentioned in the Human Revolution episode.

 

As for the video quality, the copy I uploaded was very clear, so the problem is all on Youtube. I can look into providing a copy to download later on.

 

You can throw all the tech you want into a game, but if at the end of the day, smearing a color filter is the solution to all your issues, then you might as well just give up, why even bother have lighting, just make everything grey, who cares.

If you are noticing the lighting constantly, then it's probably bad lighting.
These are great quotes, I think I'll mention that latter one in a follow up episode later on if I remember.

 

Just a heads up, but you can mod out the brown filter from just about any modern game, along with a bunch of other gfx mods, by using ReShade (The Crew presets).
Yes and no. I used a reshade preset on the crew, it helped some things, but it never got to looking "good." Here's a few general issues I run into, depending on the game:

 

-I'm not sure I've ever seen a game where you can completely correct a full tint filter. It can accentuate the opposite color too much and drown out emphasis where the color should be there.

-I mentioned Burnout Paradise, that's one where you really can't fix things, because the color of the tint being used will change depending on what time of day it is. Check and mate.

-The Crew also lowers the contrast on the image. This looks awful during the day, but if you correct it, then night driving is even worse.

-It's uncommon for me to find a profile that really fixes the situation. Unfortunately many people will overcompensate or just get too artsy themselves.

-It kind of requires you to be a lighting expert yourself, which I'm not.

 

Granted, it can improve many games, but I can't think of case where it just completely FIXED the problem.

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Some of you might appreciate this. I made this 10 years back. Here is a screenshot from Unreal Tournament 3 in beta:

 

00135809a.jpg

 

Here is the edit I made of it to reflect the "new and improved" style:

 

newimproved.png

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Posted (edited)
Some of you might appreciate this. I made this 10 years back. Here is a screenshot from Unreal Tournament 3 in beta:

---

Here is the edit I made of it to reflect the "new and improved" style:

---

 

That's what the whole XBOX 360\PS3 era was like to me at least.

 

142809_screenshot_01_l.jpg

CelJaded-Gears-of-War-2.jpg

 

I forgot about the UT3 beta, this is what 90% of the game looks like now.

7DwakGd.jpg

 

WHY PURPLE???

 

"our eyes can only see 30 fps, and two colors, that's all we are legally allowed to show you"

 

Jesus christ even the promotional material wasn't that filtered.

UiACBf4.jpg

"i'm angry because they took my colors away"

 

ZvFbTsp.png

"grr"

 

I actually faced this huge problem a while ago with Battlefield 3, where the color filters made some maps in the game literally unplayable.

For some reason one map I got to play on, was pitch black, and the main color was green.

 

I couldn't see shit, all the camouflage was green, I just died over and over again until I gave up and stopped playing.

 

Immagine this but in pitch black darkness. I don't get it.

DTyQcN0.jpg

 

Look at this shit, I can barely tell my allies apart from the ground, how am I supposed to even see the enemy?

 

"man, fuck colors" said some EA guy, probably "EVERYTHING SHOULD BE GREEN, and sometimes blue, WHO CARES IF YOU CAN'T SEE ANYONE"

 

And then you have this fucking garbage. WHY IS MY SCREEN FULL OF DIRT?? WHY AM I GOING BLIND BY JUST STARRING AT THE SKY??

hvuiCXW.png

 

what the fuck

FBQmNEW.png

 

MY EYES ARE NOT WINDSHIELDS, WHY ARE MY EYES DIRTY???

 

fucking whyyyyyyyyyy

v4Ko9po.png

 

WHY WOULD A RACING GAME HAVE THIS EFFECT??? WHO COMES UP WITH THIS SHIT, BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAH

pr0Wkdm.jpg

 

a bunch of artists slave themselves to make the game look nice and colorful, and then some dumbass ART DIRECTOR goes "SLAP A COLOR FILTER ON IT, YEAHHH, THAT LOOKS PERFECT"

 

I'm not sure if this is a racing game, or an art project gone wrong.

1ikhScr.png

 

what am i even looking at?

o1hRAUh.png

 

maybe i'm just a moron, i don't know, BUT WHY BLUE IT'S SUCH A DEPRESSING COLOR BLEH

 

now let's not even go over the actual performance costs these effects have on the game, is it really worth losing actual frames per second for this shit?

Edited by Guest

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I work for a large game company(mobile) , as a 3D artist, and if all the other game companies work in similar ways.. believe me, there are artists in the development teams wanting to make things look natural, with true to life colors and little or no color filters. The issue is that people who make the environments don't have the last word on the subject. If there is some higher level producer or lead who wants a color filter, there's not much we can do to oppose that. You might try to hold your ground, try to change their mind but in the end if they feel it looks "cooler" or more "dramatic" or "cinematic" with a color filter then.. that is it. The best win you can get sometimes is to lessen the intensity of some filters - it can be WAY worse, and if no one would try to oppose it during development, the games would be way more monochromatic..

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I work for a large game company(mobile) , as a 3D artist, and if all the other game companies work in similar ways.. believe me, there are artists in the development teams wanting to make things look natural, with true to life colors and little or no color filters. The issue is that people who make the environments don't have the last word on the subject. If there is some higher level producer or lead who wants a color filter, there's not much we can do to oppose that. You might try to hold your ground, try to change their mind but in the end if they feel it looks "cooler" or more "dramatic" or "cinematic" with a color filter then.. that is it. The best win you can get sometimes is to lessen the intensity of some filters - it can be WAY worse, and if no one would try to oppose it during development, the games would be way more monochromatic..

 

i would probably tell them to fuck off but, I'm usually a very insistent, "in your face" kinda guy, I would probably just straight up refuse to do it and move on and just do more important work

and i refuse to just do more work for nothing, I'm not working extra to make things look worse, piss off, I just don't like this whole "slave till you drop dead" corporate mentality, if something bothers me I don't like to wait around like most people, I try to take a stance and if I can I do try to solve the problem at hand, but if you guys really want this so badly, then you can do it yourselves, or pay me better, how about that

 

work is tiring enough, i don't need more bullshit busy work, in my mind at least

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I work for a large game company(mobile) , as a 3D artist, and if all the other game companies work in similar ways.. believe me, there are artists in the development teams wanting to make things look natural, with true to life colors and little or no color filters. The issue is that people who make the environments don't have the last word on the subject. If there is some higher level producer or lead who wants a color filter, there's not much we can do to oppose that. You might try to hold your ground, try to change their mind but in the end if they feel it looks "cooler" or more "dramatic" or "cinematic" with a color filter then.. that is it. The best win you can get sometimes is to lessen the intensity of some filters - it can be WAY worse, and if no one would try to oppose it during development, the games would be way more monochromatic..

 

i would probably tell them to fuck off but, I'm usually a very insistent, "in your face" kinda guy, I would probably just straight up refuse to do it and move on and just do more important work

and i refuse to just do more work for nothing, I'm not working extra to make things look worse, piss off, I just don't like this whole "slave till you drop dead" corporate mentality, if something bothers me I don't like to wait around like most people, I try to take a stance and if I can I do try to solve the problem at hand, but if you guys really want this so badly, then you can do it yourselves, or pay me better, how about that

 

work is tiring enough, i don't need more bullshit busy work, in my mind at least

 

When you say "extra work" don't imagine that color filters take a lot of time to add. It's added in seconds. Plus you can't really take that "I won't do it" stance if you'd like to have a good standing in the company. Furthermore if you won't do it, they will get someone who will and really you haven't earned anything but a "difficult to work with" assessment. In the end the best thing you can do is to lessen the harm and maybe (I think) climb up the ladder so you can one day make the big decisions.

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