Festive Feature #3 - Top 5 Game Add-Ons of 2010

Festive Feature #3 - Top 5 Game Add-Ons of 2010

Written Wednesday, December 22, 2010 By Dan Webb
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Everyone loves DLC, right? No, well we do... and no-one asked you, okay? What do you mean, I just asked you? That was a rhetorical segue, of course, because that’s how I roll.  Anyway, where was I? Oh, that’s right, in today’s Festive Feature, our focus turns to this year’s best pieces of DLC, or as Microsoft likes to call them, “Game Add-Ons”... Oooohhh, how fancy! It’s a straightforward top 5 this one, so we look for the best and disregard the rest. Simples.
We know that technically Dead Rising: Case Zero is an Xbox Live Arcade game, but Capcom isn’t fooling us, and because it’s our list and we make the rules, we definitely felt that Case Zero deserved its place in the top 5.

Taking place before the events in Dead Rising 2 – yes, it’s a prequel, which confirms our assertions that this is in fact a game add-on... although standalone – Case Zero not only introduces you to the game’s new character, Chuck Greene – who’s admittedly no Frank West – but it also gives the player some background to the story and even introduces the new combo weapon system. So essentially what Case Zero offers is the gameplay of the main game – which acts as a demo of sorts – with the added bonus of offering gameplay moments outside the confines of the main retail game. That, and zombies. Lots of zombies. Can’t be bad, huh?


Despite Borderlands’ Claptrap Revolution being released in the latter half of 2010, we firmly believe that The Secret Armory of General Knoxx is not only the better DLC episode of the two, but it’s also the best one that Gearbox has created for their 2009 smash hit. Actually, it’s one of the year’s best pieces of DLC in our eyes, especially since it gave us an excuse to re-enter the desolate wastelands of Pandora. That’s probably why it appears at number 4... go figure!

The Secret Armory of General Knoxx not only gave us new environments to explore with new vehicles, new missions to tackle and new enemies to kick the living daylights out of, but it also upped the level cap and gave us new loot and weapons to play around with. In other words, General Knoxx’s DLC played to the game’s strengths and nearly made up for the abomination that was Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot – the DLC that came before it... Man, that was a crap piece of DLC. A far cry from the impressive General Knoxx anyway.


What happens when you cross zombies with the Wild West? Easy, you get Red Dead Redemption’s Undead Nightmare... and when you get that, you know you’ve landed one of the year’s best pieces of downloadable content.

Undead Nightmare was released back in October and received a great response from critics, as fans of the 8 million selling behemoth finally had some single-player DLC to get down and dirty with. Heading back into the shoes of our best character of 2010, Undead Nightmare pits John Marston and a few select locals against a zombie pandemic and it’s up to the gruff-voiced ex-outlaw to save the day once again. It’s like Red Dead... but with zombies, which is exactly what the doctor ordered. Actually, I think you’ll find the doctor ordered a cure for this zombie outbreak, but we’ll leave that to our man John Marston... the great Victorian bloke. Wait... wrong product. Either way, Undead Nightmare also comes with a new co-op horde-style game mode, where you fight wave after wave of zombies, as well as another competitive multiplayer game mode too. Not bad for the low, low price of 800 Microsoft Points.


Bad Company 2’s Vietnam has only been out a day and it’s already made its way into a top 5 feature – that must be a world record! You’ll be more than aware though that we’ve had some amazing fun with this beasty little expansion for the past few weeks and considering we gave it a rather glowing review, Vietnam more than deserves its place on the podium.

Boasting 5 new maps – one of which is currently locked while the community rally together in a Battlefield 1943-esque challenge – and a brand new look and feel, punters might be mistaken in thinking that Bad Company 2: Vietnam is your traditional map pack, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. With 5 new ginormous maps, new weapon skins and new weapons, new vehicles, a new era, new licensed music and even new voice-overs, Bad Company 2: Vietnam is so much more than your traditional map pack. It’s ‘Nam baby!


Mass Effect’s DLC has often been criticised since the franchise graced our consoles and as an ardent supporter of the BioWare space epic, I’ll be the first one to say that most of it has, for want of a better word, sucked. Okay, sucked is a little harsh, but it’s been nowhere near the quality we expect for the franchise.

This year things have changed though and throughout the year the Mass Effect 2 DLC has got progressively better, culminating with the excellent Lair of the Shadow Broker DLC. Not only does Lair of the Shadow Broker's story match the high levels set by the game’s boxed missions, but it also allows Mass Effect fans to bring the comic book story arc to a close, as well as tying up one of the main game’s loose ends. For Liara fans, it even allowed players to rekindle their relationship that they might have taken up in the original. Throw in a couple of boss battles, some new environments and an excellent hover car chase and what you have is this year’s best piece of DLC. Now if only BioWare could create more of it, we’d be a hell of a lot happier. Until then however, we’ll continue to cry into our pillows every night. At least the quality is on the rise, which we can at least be thankful for.

3 top 5s down, 2 to go, and tomorrow, we bring back the fan-favourite top 5 Easter eggs of the year as we dive behind enemy lines and dig out the best hidden gems in this year’s games.

If you’ve not checked out our top 5 video game characters or our top 5 game trailers of 2010, there’s still time.


User Comments

Forum Posts: 98
Comment #1 by B Rock3232
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 04:38:09 PM
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Love Case Zero and General Knoxx. Well deserved on the list. I'm hoping that Fable 3 has some really good DLC next year other then Understone.

Forum Posts: 19
Comment #2 by glitch12
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 04:41:18 PM
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huh, i'd have thought that wild west zombies would've won first.....thats what i get for not keeping ME2 i suppose

Forum Posts: 397
Comment #3 by GORQITO
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 05:19:09 PM
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Hate to ask this, but why in every top 5 is there Mass Effect? Are there no other games to include in the top 5 segments? It's kinda overrated I think. And predictable.

Forum Posts: 1205
Comment #4 by mikachu93
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 05:39:00 PM
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@3 - Because Mass Effect is a series worthy of the recognition and acknowledgements, maybe?

Forum Posts: 247
Comment #5 by atomic viking54
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 05:49:04 PM
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undead nightmare=first

Forum Posts: 154
Comment #6 by A Pip Boy 3000
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 06:28:47 PM
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Vietnam is great, and does deserve to be up there!

Forum Posts: 2609
Comment #7 by jamie1000013
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 07:13:10 PM
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I would knock Red Dead down a place or two simply because of the price...

I rarely buy game add ons though apart from Fallout DLC. Dead Rising case zero was better than the actual game for me though lol. I am tempted to buy Borderlands GOTY now though.

Forum Posts: 9
Comment #8 by reg12365
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 07:42:27 PM
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@7 I think it was only 800 points right? that seem's fairly reasonable.

Forum Posts: 2609
Comment #9 by jamie1000013
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 07:58:15 PM
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@8 they got it down for £17.50 on Amazon, and I think I saw it at Game for a similar place.

£17.50 is a bit over priced because all they have done is used the same game mechanics but added zombies instead of the other enemies.

Forum Posts: 14816
Comment #10 by Webb [STAFF]
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 08:09:53 PM
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@#9 - That's actually the collection, which includes all the other Red Dead DLC. Undead Nightmare, the actual DLC episode, is only 800 MSP... it even says it in the article =P

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #11 by blackout529
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 08:30:56 PM
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Shadow Broker and Undead Nightmare were excellent add-ons.

I'm betting one of the top 5 Easter eggs will be the Portal reference in Fable 3. Has to be...

Forum Posts: 2609
Comment #12 by jamie1000013
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 08:35:21 PM
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@#10 I'm just gunna minus my own comment because I basically just owned myself...

Still, I can't wait for tommorow's easter egg one.

Forum Posts: 3670
Comment #13 by Burning Karma
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 09:48:51 PM
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No Minerva's Den? I am disappoint.

Forum Posts: 16
Comment #14 by callmeclean
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 @ 09:49:41 PM
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@I agree mostly with this list except I think that Undead Nightmare should be 2 and Vietnam in slot 3 because Undead Nightmare is just awesome and never gets old killing zombies. I agree with Lair of the Shadow broker for place 1 because it was a huge step forward in quality. (especially the beautiful sky effects and ship model when your outside the Shadow Brokers base)My only problem with it was the horribly designed achievements. Anyway good list look forward to the last 2 :)

Forum Posts: 152
Comment #15 by NeoSant
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 01:27:51 AM
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Well... you put mass effect in everything... I try to like the game but i cant... just not my style :Sm still im buying the dlc RDR disc :)

Forum Posts: 397
Comment #16 by GORQITO
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 01:43:05 AM
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@4 More like overrated.

Forum Posts: 61
Comment #17 by killieexile
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 03:23:21 AM
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General Knoxx? I had umteen things go wrong with this dlc like having my game corrupted twice at level 60.

Forum Posts: 31
Comment #18 by Ash2X
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 04:25:10 AM
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I´ve seen Lair of the SHadow Broker really bad rated...
You can´t go wron with General get more then awesome Weapons.

Forum Posts: 11
Comment #19 by Mrfishyp
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 05:07:36 AM
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Minerva's Den anyone? Considering the dead rising one isnt really a game add - on?

Forum Posts: 3
Comment #20 by FYS
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 08:40:53 AM
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im really angry i sold red dead, borderlands and me2 all these dlc's look amazing :@
oh well ill just buy red dead undead disk

Forum Posts: 1205
Comment #21 by mikachu93
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 09:59:36 AM
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@16 - Kinda like Call of Duty and Halo, then?

Forum Posts: 16
Comment #22 by Callam001
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 12:31:37 PM
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borderlands and dead rising last? fuck you, battlefield bad company doesnt deserve to be second that game is shit

Forum Posts: 2773
Comment #23 by jtr1gg3r
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 02:57:41 PM
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Id have put Borderlands higher, but it's one of my favourite games, so Im biased lol

Forum Posts: 176
Comment #24 by Dredgon
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 07:32:49 PM
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Lair of the Shadow Broker FTW, bring on at least one more DLC like that as we wait a year for the third!!!!!

Forum Posts: 274
Comment #25 by macd
Thursday, December 23, 2010 @ 08:56:47 PM
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Case Zero was probably the most fun arcade game I've played this year.

Shadow Broker was awesome. However, I have really enjoyed all the ME and ME2 DLC so far. I actually thought Pinnacle Station was awesome... seems I was the only one. But fair play with this at number 1.

Forum Posts: 5
Comment #26 by MielikkisChosen
Friday, December 24, 2010 @ 10:59:45 AM
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Borderlands should be #1, as it is in my heart lol.

Forum Posts: 43
Comment #27 by BlO0DJUNKi3
Friday, December 24, 2010 @ 01:00:05 PM
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As great as Undead Nightmare is, adding zombies is no longer original enough to claim the first spot.

Forum Posts: 120
Comment #28 by Desmondo2000
Friday, December 24, 2010 @ 02:12:48 PM
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trials hd big thrills is the dlc i've played the most

Forum Posts: 439
Comment #29 by ianke_2002
Sunday, December 26, 2010 @ 07:20:12 PM
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Minerva's Den from Bioshock 2 shouldve EASILY been in this top 5....let alone the top 3. Honestly a phenomenal little add on to the game.

Forum Posts: 200
Comment #30 by Simlaurel
Monday, December 27, 2010 @ 02:15:56 PM
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@29...Totally agree, I loved Minerva's Den, and it should definetly have been included.

Forum Posts: 62
Comment #31 by VicRattlehead
Monday, December 27, 2010 @ 02:37:43 PM
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where are Dragon Age: Origins Awakening? And the two Alan Wake DLC?

Forum Posts: 1799
Comment #32 by ThePumpkinKing
Tuesday, December 28, 2010 @ 11:42:55 AM
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Hey Webb. We all know you LOVE Mass Effect. Problem is, the Shadow Broker DLC (or any other bit of ME DLC) doesn't belong on this list. Let alone at the top of it. The content was easily the shortest and least substantial of anything in this top 5. Hell, Bioware has yet to release anything of scope and scale of any of the other DLC you've mentioned.

Your fanboy boner for Mass Effect is fucking with your site's integrity.

Forum Posts: 501
Comment #33 by Timmsy
Wednesday, December 29, 2010 @ 05:09:30 AM
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Lair of the shadow broker was amazing, loved fighting on the exterior of the ship! amazing scenery and environment!

Forum Posts: 404
Comment #34 by ViNyLek
Thursday, December 30, 2010 @ 09:40:45 AM
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Wow, this is bogus. I enjoyed Lair but not that much. Undead nightmare, knoxx and case zero all deserve to be higher than it just because of content to price ration... I'll blame it on the fact that Webb is sort of ME fanatic and he is simply blinded in this case^^ Good list, but needs some rearranging:-P

Forum Posts: 8
Comment #35 by MumblesMcBabble
Thursday, December 30, 2010 @ 05:36:35 PM
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Way too much driving in Knoxx.

Forum Posts: 106
Comment #36 by bawrash
Friday, December 31, 2010 @ 04:43:01 PM
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I preferred the overload dlc to the shadow broker but apart from that I cant argue with that list.

Forum Posts: 14816
Comment #37 by Webb [STAFF]
Sunday, January 02, 2011 @ 10:13:14 PM
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@#32 & #34 - You do realise that they are voted for and nominated by the staff, right? Not many pieces of DLC offer the story, variety and attachment to the campaign like Lair of the Shadow Broker did, thus why it came first. Long doesn't necessarily mean good, it just means better value for money. Limbo is short for 1,200 MSP, but quite clearly the best Arcade title of the year.

Forum Posts: 1518
Comment #38 by tripleb2k
Saturday, January 08, 2011 @ 05:35:10 PM
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I though Red Dead was going to win this AGAIN haha.
Lair of the Shadow Broker was a great treat for ME1 fans.

Forum Posts: 38
Comment #39 by Aussie27Legend
Saturday, January 08, 2011 @ 09:39:15 PM
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Undead Nightmare No.3? Interesting, not sure I agree, but interesting none the less.

Forum Posts: 62
Comment #40 by BlandYoshi
Sunday, January 09, 2011 @ 12:27:37 AM
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I agree with Mumbles. Knoxx has way way way too much driving back and forth. From one end to the other. Pain in the butt. If they had new u stations set up it wouldn't have been so bad.

Forum Posts: 178
Comment #41 by Blue Thunder28
Sunday, January 09, 2011 @ 04:51:47 PM
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Couldn't agree more with this list, Webb.. Fucking perfect.

Forum Posts: 522
Comment #42 by Arenazombie
Monday, January 10, 2011 @ 03:31:39 PM
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*spoiler warning*
Don't agree with the Shadow Broker.
Wasn't special gameplaywise and the Shadow Broker should have stayed a mystery. Don't like that its just one fat cockroach type guy.
Should have at least something more majestic.
He just doesn't live up to all the mystery.

Forum Posts: 248
Comment #43 by Xavygravy
Monday, January 10, 2011 @ 04:42:11 PM
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Forum Posts: 8
Comment #44 by Beachem
Tuesday, January 11, 2011 @ 02:26:22 PM
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@42 you're crazy!!! The Shadow Broker looked bad ass and was a total suprise for me. I was kinda expecting the shadow broker to be a race already revealed in the a turian or salarian

Forum Posts: 17
Comment #45 by toughl
Thursday, January 13, 2011 @ 06:08:49 AM
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how is undead nightmare even on this list?sure they offered a lot of content for the price but honestly,once you completed one mission,you completed them all.this game had nothing to offer except new achievements and the MP component lost it's appeal once you had your cheevos.every mission is so redundant and repetitive.kill some zombies and ride to the next marker.seriously,we all hated the horse mission in the regular game and now they just gave us more of the same?the landscape is beautiful but it's boring to ride from A to B with nothing really happening and dull music in the background.stop hypin' everything about this game just because it's rockstar

Forum Posts: 100
Comment #46 by bearmod
Thursday, January 13, 2011 @ 10:12:01 AM
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Wouldn't Dead Rising Case Zero just count as a XBLA game instead of dlc. I'm not trying to bitch about the nomination or anything I actually really like DR: Case Zero and DR2 I just would have thought it wouldn't count as dlc since the achievements don't add on to DR2 and since it came out before DR2, I supppose you can import your character so I guess that counts for something

Forum Posts: 189
Comment #47 by tsydrown
Friday, January 14, 2011 @ 03:16:18 AM
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Having finished Shadow Broker on Wednesday, I must say, it fully deserves it's place at the top. RDR, although fantastic, added . . . Zombies . . . just not original enough anymore, barring the fact it's in the Wild West.

Curious, is BF: Vietnam considered an "Add-on" or an "Expansion Pack"? Some may say they're the same, but an "Add-on" in my eyes is a small piece of DLC, whereas an Expansion Pack is much larger (think TLaD/BoGT, they were expansions. I appreciate others will disagree, or it could be that my Night Shift has sucked the life from me!?!?!?

Secret Armory was superb, still yet to fully complete it, but impressed with the 95% i've played, worthy of 2nd behind Shadow Broker in my eyes . . .

Forum Posts: 28
Comment #48 by AlexQuint
Friday, January 14, 2011 @ 03:32:54 AM
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Nice list, here's mine:

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #49 by XGamer
Friday, January 14, 2011 @ 11:07:44 PM
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I agree with number one. MASS EFFECT 2!

Forum Posts: 24
Comment #50 by Salle
Sunday, January 16, 2011 @ 04:28:06 AM
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I approve of this list.

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #51 by Dash
Sunday, January 16, 2011 @ 01:54:17 PM
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Dead Rising 2 Case West better than Case Zero

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #52 by Theago Loco
Tuesday, January 18, 2011 @ 08:07:19 AM
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"Red Dead Redemption’s Undead Nightmare" the best one!

Forum Posts: 1805
Comment #53 by newbsicle
Tuesday, January 18, 2011 @ 05:56:48 PM
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I disagree with General Knoxx. At best it was decent. It's true, the content is substantial, but it's mostly running errans from here to there. About 50% of the time you'll spend driving from one place to the next. THERE IS NOT FAST TRAVEL!!! It also had many glitches initially and though it's been patched, still has a good few game ending glitches.


Forum Posts: 0
Comment #54 by Minus8isGreat
Thursday, January 20, 2011 @ 06:41:48 PM
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The Insurgency Pack for Splinter Cell: Conviction has added a lot of great maps and Co-op playability. I think it won best DLC of 2010 on Gamespot, and at 800 MS points could be an honorable mention for this list. These all sound awesome as well, but Insurgency adds some more challenges and increases the single and multi-player opportunities.

Forum Posts: 4
Comment #55 by The_willdawg
Monday, May 23, 2011 @ 12:11:39 AM
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Undead nightmare is def my favorite

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