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 Post subject: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:54 am 
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Ill-Fated Peasant

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Quick question about Heroic Deeds of Arms, would you allow a player to perform a Heroic Deed of Arms that would effectively instantly kill an enemy? For example, in People of the Pit, would you allow a Warrior to knock a cultist into the pit - and how would you prevent that character repeating the move over and over again, when the environment allows? By the same token, would you allow a Warrior to knock a certain emerald enchanter into a certain vat as a Heroic Deed of Arms? It's the same move in principal, but could bring what would otherwise be a long and memorable/difficult battle to a sudden end?


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:00 pm 
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I have yet to play my first game (thursday, yay!), but from a lot of other RPGing, my take on this is to allow dire consequences when the environment allows. It's really fun for the players to manage something like that. In a D&D game 20 years ago, one of my players killed a marilith demon, the BBEG that had been the center of a long adventure for them, by taking her head off in one swing, by surprise. The guys still talk about that today as one of the highlights of a 10-year long campaign.

Now I've not read the People of the Pit adventure, but this being said, if I were say an enchanger (or just about anyone), and enemies were in the same area as I, I would not stand in front of a pit where falling would mean death, because I would be well aware of the danger. Likewise, I would not stand beneath a 300-pound metal chandelier with spikes and a rope holding it and attached next to the door, nor would I wait for my enemies on a log over a chasm (talk to the native american indian in Predator...), etc... I think that this kind of situation may arise accidently or in the midst of the action, but anyone is conscious enough to feel the danger of such a precarious situation. If however there is an advantage for said enchanter to stand near said pit, well then he'll have to balance the danger vs the advantage, won't he? This might give the fighter an opportunity to shine.

Just my two cents.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:07 pm 
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Agreed -- as a Judge, you have to play your bad guys as intelligent as they would be. I try to play them as my "character." Some will rush forward to sacrifice for their leader, but the smart ones use the environment to their advantage. It is _their_ home turf, so they technically should have the advantage.

I'm all about giving the players "action" opportunities -- like knocking a cultist off into the pit. Critting the BBEG out of the blue happens, though. And it's always exciting.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:46 pm 
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In the playtest, I think we knocked at least one cultist off the stairs. You run the risk of falling yourself, don't overplay (or underplay) that, but the risk is there...

My approach to repeated strategy is that the opponents catch on -- just as players would if you kept pulling the same stunt against them.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:05 pm 
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I would allow it in my games. At least once! After that if the enemy combatants they will reposition themselves or take other actions to help prevent the same from happening to them. I tend to allow players to be fairly creative with their Deeds and try to say Yes when their dice come up in their favor.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 3:35 pm 
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As a side note, I understand your concern. In D&D 4E, the wizard player wanted to use his Light cantrip every round to blind enemies, to provide an advantage to his colleagues. (For those that haven't played 4E, "Light" is a minor cantrip that takes a minor action to cast, i.e. you can still do you full round's worth of moving and casting other more interesting spells, and the wizard is capable of casting it at will, as many times as he wishes.) This would have meant allowing a trick to work every time to give an advantage to the PCs, without any real creativity on a case-by-case basis, except for coming up with the idea in the first place. I ruled that he could cast his Light spell as usual as a minor action, but that using it to distract opponents would require his standard (attack) action. So he would get the result he wished, but he would need to sacrifice his action, esssentially forfeiting casting another spell.

I was harsher here because this was not a circumstantial trick, this was something permanently do-able. Like someone saying "I'll throw sand in the eyes of my opponent and attack" and wishing to do both on the same round. I would probably not allow that, because it's a repeatable trick and I would find a way to get the trick to work, but to balance it with other PC options, probably requiring a full attack action to pull off. (Well, the DCC fighter could try it with a deed without sacrificing an action, but that's his thing, isn't it?)

I guess my point is: I don't feel that pushing someone off a cliff is so frequent that you need to prevent the fighter's deed from working. Or, if you feel it's a bit too drastic, here is what D&D 4E did when you tried pushing someone else off a cliff: allow the victim of the push a saving throw, if he succeeds, he falls to the ground (prone) next to the cliff; if he fails, he falls. In D&D 4E pushing and moving people about is relatively frequent, and I guess cliffs and pits are relatively frequent too.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:05 pm 
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I would absolutely allow it because that is what makes the Fighter/Dwarf so cool. Also from reading through and messing around with People of the Pit the NPC's are just as likely to tentacle toss a PC into the pit so I think it all evens out in the end.

If it's game breaking I understand that but give the PC's the advantage if they think of one. DCC will bash their heads in eventually :lol: .


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:52 am 
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Necropost!

I just wanted to add for people to not forget this isn't a video game. You are not bound by strict laws that things only function one way.

If the warrior did a special attack to shove someone into a pit it could indeed work. Perhaps even a second time! 2 cultists tumble away into certain death!

The 3rd time he tried such a move in one fight the 3rd cultist would be ready for it and suddenly the warrior would find himself in a lot of trouble! it's never a good idea to telegraph your upcoming movies in a fight!

Don't ever let yourself get trapped by the very rules you use to have fun.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:13 am 
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Yeah, I'd allow it, but as others have already said, intelligent foes will adapt. Though they have no Mighty Deed mechanic to work with, there's no reason the cultists couldn't steal the idea and try it against the PCs! It may take 7 cultists to drag Gorl the Well-Muscled off the side, but that would be a pretty epic death a DCC player should be proud of. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 4:10 pm 
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Since the deed die adds to damage, a successful deed is already almost certain to kill one of those cultists. So why not allow the extra fun of having them sail screaming over the cliff? I think everyone benefits from the added imagery, as opposed to the warrior's player saying, "I rolled one point for my longsword plus three from the deed die and one for my strength," and you saying, "That's more than his hit points, so he clutches his chest and dies."


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:50 pm 
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mikeawmids wrote:
Quick question about Heroic Deeds of Arms, would you allow a player to perform a Heroic Deed of Arms that would effectively instantly kill an enemy? For example, in People of the Pit, would you allow a Warrior to knock a cultist into the pit - and how would you prevent that character repeating the move over and over again, when the environment allows? By the same token, would you allow a Warrior to knock a certain emerald enchanter into a certain vat as a Heroic Deed of Arms? It's the same move in principal, but could bring what would otherwise be a long and memorable/difficult battle to a sudden end?


Everyone (even NPCs) should get a saving throw before falling over the edge of anything. Also, make sure you're applying some logic. Guys coming out of hallways on the opposite side of the room (no where near the pit) shouldn't be able to be knocked into a pit. But in the case of PotP, most of them are mooks that would die from one hit, do it-toss them into the pit. Remember the abstract nature of DCC RPG combat. Damage represents how close to death they become, and if there is enough damage to "kill them", in the pit they should go. If a warrior only did an eighth of the damage required to "kill the guy next to the pit", maybe he shouldn't die but get a save, etc.

Remember Monsters (and NPCs) don't play by the same rules what are the likelihoods of the PCs falling in those vats? They'd get at least a save, right? So would the Enchanter. Plus what if the enchanter had spider climb.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:42 am 
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I'd agree with doing a save if the foe wouldn't already bite it from the blow in the first place like the basic cultists in Potp. You get an Agility check and that's it if you try to move more than half your speed down the steps so I think there's already precedence for falling over the edge.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:26 am 
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If I remember correctly the rules mention that Mighty Deeds can not be used to cause greater damage to an enemy.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:19 am 
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MrHemlocks wrote:
If I remember correctly the rules mention that Mighty Deeds can not be used to cause greater damage to an enemy.
They do and they don't.

It is mentioned that deeds like "I cut his head off!" which are meant to have an effect of only killing the monster faster are not things that should be allowed - especially not with only a 3 on the Deed die - and that Deeds should be adding something to the results of the attack other than just more damage.

...but precision Deeds also have examples of how much extra damage they might add if the Judge allows.

To me, that implies that certain situations in which a monster has a vulnerable spot or a body part that they will greatly suffer from losing - such as chopping the eye stalks off a beholder, or slipping your blade between the armored plates on that death worm's hide - that a little extra damage might be added on to represent the monster being less willing to continue the fight when so wounded.

...though I have also been using those suggested damage values as what someone can use as a cleave-like maneuver: target two adjacent enemies with a melee attack by hitting the higher AC of the two, dealing normal damage to the prime target and the extra from the deed (with no further modification) to the other.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:35 am 
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MrHemlocks wrote:
If I remember correctly the rules mention that Mighty Deeds can not be used to cause greater damage to an enemy.

In this case the deed is not about killing the enemy, but pushing. It's not the deed what kills him, but the environment.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:29 am 
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Ravenheart87 wrote:
MrHemlocks wrote:
If I remember correctly the rules mention that Mighty Deeds can not be used to cause greater damage to an enemy.

In this case the deed is not about killing the enemy, but pushing. It's not the deed what kills him, but the environment.


It really depends on the group. You don't want it to get too cheap and easy (Cheasy?) What if the bad guy did the same thing to the PC, you won't have much of a story and someone would get upset. i.e. not fun or challenging. Though you could always have the character come back later, ala Gandalf.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:38 am 
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Would I allow it?
Yes.
Would I make it easy?
No.

The cultists would not just line up around the edge of the pit and wait for somebody to knock them in. And even if they were at first, they wouldn't just topple in. Try this. Have a friend stand near the edge of your yard and pretend the edge is a bottomless pit. Now wager $100 that you can push him over the edge. See how easy it is to just run at him and shove him in...without going in yourself.
After it happens once, the others (not being video game enemies) would see what was going on and the difficulty would increase as they moved away from the edge and protected themselves from it. I would also rule that a fumble on this attempt meant going over yourself.

This is something I would do with a strength check vs the attack, and then give them a Reflex save (10? 12?) to catch hold of the person pushing them and save himself.

For somebody of more importance I would do the same thing, but he would automatically pass the reflex save to catch onto the PC and then we'd have a dramatic stand off where the PC had to win 2 out of 3 opposed strength/reflex/climb checks to avoid falling in with him.
Maybe 3 of 5, or first to 5 if the fight has been short and I want extra drama.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:19 pm 
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reverenddak wrote:
Ravenheart87 wrote:
MrHemlocks wrote:
If I remember correctly the rules mention that Mighty Deeds can not be used to cause greater damage to an enemy.

In this case the deed is not about killing the enemy, but pushing. It's not the deed what kills him, but the environment.


It really depends on the group. You don't want it to get too cheap and easy (Cheasy?) What if the bad guy did the same thing to the PC, you won't have much of a story and someone would get upset. i.e. not fun or challenging.


Sorry, but "does it makes sense" and "can you do it IRL" always has higher priority in my games. If the players are stupid enough give an opportunity to the enemy to push their characters down, then they shall suffer the consequences. The same is true about their enemies. But I do let them make a saving throw, they might catch the verge of the chasm, which leads to tension and excitement. Plus there is always a chance that they fail in pushing the enemy back and fall down instead of their target. Fairplay. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:05 am 
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I treat my enemies and my players the same and if your on a ledge and the enemy happened to have the same mechanic then yeah they'd suffer the same consequences. I agree with saving throws though and when I imagine mighty deeds I don't imagine just a charge and a push I consider it part of using the weapon to hack at the foe. I could push my friend into said pit much easier if I was swinging a blade or a shield at his person then if I just tried it from a grapple.

Realism I absolutely go for but that applies to everyone in game.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:23 am 
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AQuebman wrote:
I could push my friend into said pit much easier if I was swinging a blade or a shield at his person then if I just tried it from a grapple.

Realism I absolutely go for but that applies to everyone in game.


But in the scenario your friend would be armed too, since the enemies are armed. I used pushing your friend unarmed as an example because two unarmed combatants is relatively the same as two armed combatants for these purposes.

Pushing somebody over a ledge is more than a matter of just running up and shoving them, especially if they know you're coming. People aren't sacks of deadweight, and even with weapons in hand there is going to be some form of grappling, shoving, and resistance involved. If you charge somebody and shield bash them, you'd have to hit like freight train to knock them backwards over a ledge, and then be able to stop on a dime to avoid going over yourself. If you want realism, that's not realistic.

In reality, you have to throw people over a ledge, because opponents don't just fly backwards from a hit, at least not one where you just run up, hit them and then stop.


Physics says no.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:25 am 
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Dark Lord wrote:
AQuebman wrote:
I could push my friend into said pit much easier if I was swinging a blade or a shield at his person then if I just tried it from a grapple.

Realism I absolutely go for but that applies to everyone in game.


But in the scenario your friend would be armed too, since the enemies are armed. I used pushing your friend unarmed as an example because two unarmed combatants is relatively the same as two armed combatants for these purposes.

Pushing somebody over a ledge is more than a matter of just running up and shoving them, especially if they know you're coming. People aren't sacks of deadweight, and even with weapons in hand there is going to be some form of grappling, shoving, and resistance involved. If you charge somebody and shield bash them, you'd have to hit like freight train to knock them backwards over a ledge, and then be able to stop on a dime to avoid going over yourself. If you want realism, that's not realistic.

In reality, you have to throw people over a ledge, because opponents don't just fly backwards from a hit, at least not one where you just run up, hit them and then stop.


Physics says no.


I see your point but from a high fantasy perspective I dont imagine adventurers the same as you and I trying to shove each other into a sandbox. Fighters and Dwarves are special and incredibly skilled so pulling off those maneuvers in a fantastic way is their forte. If the thief or wizard tried it I would 100% agree with you that it would be damn hard and would be as dangerous for you as it is your foe.

You also have to hit to do it so I imagine things like a stab to the stomach and a hard kick to throw them off the blade and possibly off the edge.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:43 am 
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So you don't want realism, you want action.

That's not what you said.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:17 pm 
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Dark Lord wrote:
So you don't want realism, you want action.

That's not what you said.



No we just have a differing viewpoint on what's realistic. I don't think of average joes when I think of the realism in my fantasy campaign, just my personal take. I mean really arguing about realism in a fantasy realm is rather silly anyways it's fantasy no matter how you look at it. I try to go with realism while also making sure that each class feels like they are effective within their roles. Mighty Deeds is pretty much all the fighter classes have so I admit i'm a bit more open with that.

Considering I just ran a party in People of the Pit and the cleric killed 2 of the cultists by fearing them with turn unholy which then caused 2 of them to slip off the edge I figure the fighter/dwarf should have a decent shot to do the same.

Either way you look at it DCC is killer, that last encounter I just brought up was hilarious and unexpected. I just love the feel of high adventure all the characters give off it's extremely fun.


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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:51 pm 
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AQuebman wrote:
Dark Lord wrote:
So you don't want realism, you want action.

That's not what you said.



No we just have a differing viewpoint on what's realistic.


+2d24.

If you watch fencing competitions, you can see that people get "pushed back" by attacks simply in their attempts to avoid them.

In reality, you do not have to throw people over a ledge, because opponents do sometimes step backwards, lose their footing, or even, yes, get pushed back from a blow. As someone who has been on both sides of "pushback" I can assure you that, while it doesn't work exactly like the old Hollywood "fly backwards from a hit", it does occur, even when you just run up, hit them and then stop.

Physics says yes. It is called "transfer of momentum", and you can see it any time you wish on a pool table. You can also grab some practice gear and a friend, put a cord down to indicate the ledge, and see if you can get each other to go past it. For more fun, actually use a stage about an inch or two over some soft surface where you won't get hurt if you fall.

One thing you will notice is that, where the fall is not due to missed footing, or backing up to avoid being hit, transfer of momentum tends to be partial. That is; if one falls, you often both fall. And that is the difference between the DCC warrior and you - the DCC warrior is better at pushing, at stopping, and at intimidating his foe to take the fatal backwards step. No magic required.

IMHO. YMMV.

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 Post subject: Re: Deed actions that would insta-kill an enemy
PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:12 pm 
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Raven_Crowking wrote:
If you watch fencing competitions, you can see that people get "pushed back" by attacks simply in their attempts to avoid them.


Only because you can't step sideways in fencing. :lol:

Raven_Crowking wrote:
In reality, you do not have to throw people over a ledge, because opponents do sometimes step backwards, lose their footing, or even, yes, get pushed back from a blow. As someone who has been on both sides of "pushback" I can assure you that, while it doesn't work exactly like the old Hollywood "fly backwards from a hit", it does occur, even when you just run up, hit them and then stop.


I agree, that if somebody sat right on the edge of a cliff, they could topple from a shove...but that's not what is taking place in the module.

Raven_Crowking wrote:
Physics says yes. It is called "transfer of momentum", and you can see it any time you wish on a pool table. You can also grab some practice gear and a friend, put a cord down to indicate the ledge, and see if you can get each other to go past it. For more fun, actually use a stage about an inch or two over some soft surface where you won't get hurt if you fall.


If you were fighting an inanimate, spherical object, you'd have a point...but in this case we're talking about a living thing, who is not standing directly on the edge, but rather a relatively safe distance back from it, and can change his center of gravity, and has arms to grab with.
Transfer of momentum also takes into account the other laws of motion, like the opposing force, and gravity.

Raven_Crowking wrote:
One thing you will notice is that, where the fall is not due to missed footing, or backing up to avoid being hit, transfer of momentum tends to be partial. That is; if one falls, you often both fall. And that is the difference between the DCC warrior and you - the DCC warrior is better at pushing, at stopping, and at intimidating his foe to take the fatal backwards step. No magic required.

IMHO. YMMV.


My mileage does vary because I have watched sumo wrestling, which is what we're talking about. And it's NEVER a simple matter of simply slamming into somebody. If it were, there would not be a sport.

YMMV. :wink:


Last edited by Dark Lord on Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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