El Chavo

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El Chavo
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Chaves cover.png
ElChavoAndroid.JPG

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Protagonist(s): El Chavo
Quico
Ñoño
La Popis (Wii)
El Chavo (Android/iOS)
Genre(s): Party
Platform(s): iOS
Wii
Android
Release: iOS
February 8, 2012
Wii
April 24, 2012
Android
June 2014
Developer(s): Blue River (iOS/Android)
Kaxan Media Group (Wii)
Publisher(s): Televisa Home Entertainment
Slang Publishing (Wii)
Country: Argentina
Mexico
Series: El Chavo
Successor: El Chavo Kart (by release date)


"Existe, y me cuesta considerarlo más que un shovelware feo (ENG: It exists, and I find it hard to consider this game more than just ugly shovelware.)"
Zebitas Martinex

El Chavo (known as Chaves in Brazil) is a party game released for iOS on February 8, 2012, developed by the Argentinian company Blue River and published by Televisa Interactive Media, with a June 2014 release for Android on both Latin America and the United States. The Wii version was released on April 24, 2012, being developed by Mexican developer Kaxan Media Group and co-published by Slang Publishing in conjunction with Televisa Home Entertainment. Unlike with the mobile releases, the Wii version was commercially released only in Mexico and Brazil. It is based on the popular Mexican television series El Chavo Animado.

If you want to know more about the troubled development/launch, see the main article. This article is about the retail game itself, its flaws and unsuccessful release.

Plot

Android and iOS Version

Unlike Wii's version, there is no specific story, however, the game takes place at a big Fair that occurs at the neighborhood, where the player has to play the mini-games to collect coupons and unlock items via the shop.

Wii Version

El Chavo, Quico, Ñoño and La Popis would play in the neighborhood with a ball, when El Chavo throws the ball at the house of Doña Cleotilde accidentally. El Chavo goes to get the ball back, but as he would do so, he finds a magic book. El Chavo opens the book and the children are transported to a board game similar to Snakes and Ladders with elements from the Mario Party series.

Gameplay

Wii Version

This is a type of game similar to Mario Party for up to four players, where the characters compete in mini-games in the style of board games, with the aim of accumulating points and medals by defeating opponents. The general concept is based on Snakes and ladders. The game allows players to choose the characters from the animated series; El Chavo, Quico, La Popis and Ñoño. This game has about 30 mini-games, which include: Soccer, Darts, Piñata, Baking, and other traditional children's games. The game has two modes: Free Mode, where the player has the option of visiting all the mini-games with no restriction, and Cup Mode, where players compete to obtain medals.It is possible to play it with a Wiimote or with a Nunchuk connected to a Wiimote; At the beginning of each minigame there is an instructional guide on what to do and how to use the controls; These are simple (sometimes), you must shake or move the Wiimote in a certain way or move your character with the arrows (or Nunchuk joystick) and interact with buttons 1 and 2 or A and B,although this has its problems.

Android and iOS Version

The player's goal is to simply play mini-games and try to win them, in order to get Coupons, which can be used to buy new items and mini-games.

Bad Qualities

General

  1. Both versions have mediocre controls:
    • Wii Version: The controls are either somewhat slippery (like Tumba y Rebota), uncomfortable (like in Futbolito, Piñata Frenzy,Sillas Locas, Dardos and the mini-games where you have to shake the Wii Remote or buttons quickly ), or downright unresponsive, especially anything related with the motion sensor like in Avión De Papel, that you are gonna be guaranteed with losing.
    • Android and iOS Version: Bad controls. They are generally hit-or-miss, as either they are confusing, usually not respond well, or both. In some mini-games they work fine, but in games like Dodgeball, it becomes tedious. Even the mini-game of throwing cans is frustrating due to the controls. It would have been better if there was a stick to move the character better.
      • Walking is worse since you have to handle El Chavo by touching the sides of the screen, but you also you have to turn it like a car, plus the walk gets jammed when you get too close on some sides, yet this is not a big problem, because you don't walk much in the game.
  2. Speaking of controls, they make most minigames terribly unbalanced with unbalancing difficulty. Which is worse knowing that some minigames are quite difficult to control and make most of the time you get a silver or bronze medal in the Wii version, and the Android/IOS version is the version that has the worst controls because some minigames hard use the touchscreen making it difficult to make movements of the correct way and all minigames are miscontrolled or the controls are quite simple.
  3. The soundtrack is also mediocre in both versions:
    • Wii Version: The soundtrack has some decent tracks, but most are simply boring and forgettable to listen to, just like the animated series, plus there are few songs compared to other party games that have a considerable amount of music and most songs are repeated more than three times, which is lazy.
    • Android and iOS Version: Like the animated series, the music ranges from regular to mediocre, boring, lazy and quite annoying. Of course, there are decent tracks like the carnival song, but that's a rare sight.

Wii Version

  1. For starters, it's a terrible idea to make a video game of El Chavo del Ocho for mobile and then carry it to the Wii with almost everything changed except the terrible controls, minigames that don't work as they should and little content although this time for $45 (on the release date), as well as putting a rookie developer to do almost everything and give her little time to develop the game and sell it.
    • Also Televisa decided to choose the Wii to make the game when the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 had better capabilities than the Wii, it is likely that Televisa decided to make the game for the Wii because it was easier to make on that console than on the others and/or The Wii was being a huge success and was selling better than its competitors.
  2. The Wii version was very rushed as stated above in the page where the development/launch of this game is explained, the game became old and obsolete for also comply with the release date and the development only lasted a year (maybe even less), resulting in a party game with a lack of content and ill-considered ideas along with other mistakes that other party games do not have.
  3. Poor grasp of the source material: Only a few mini-games make references to the episodes of the original show or El Chavo Animado (The series on which the game is based by the way), and nearly everything else tries to copy the Mario Party series, but the execution and the flaws of the game make it feel only like a quick cash-in, either for the program or for Televisa.
  4. Poor release date: As stated above in the separate page explaining why the game was rushed, Mario Party 9 had already released and the people were getting interested in Mario Party 9 and that game sold better, plus that in the same year the Wii U was launched and some people were buying it, besides that for many people the concept was absurd and they would only buy the game because of how bad it is, because of this, the game did not sell as expected and then Televisa launched El Chavo Kart and also didn't sell what was expected (plus it was released in 2013, where people were no longer as interested in PlayStation 3 due to the release of the PlayStation 4).
  5. The plot, while decent, has some flaws:
    • The plot is quite fantastic and contrasts with the original series of the 70's, yes, the animated series was also fantastical, but in some chapters it was normal and the first season and to a lesser extent season 2 focused on making remakes of the episodes of the original series.
    • Plot Hole: As shown in the main scene that the only characters that enter the board are El Chavo and his friends, but in some minigames some characters from the neighborhood like Don Ramón, Señor Barriga, Doña Cleotilde, Godinez and Paty are presented, nor is it shown how the characters entered the board (although they may be versions of the magic book).
  6. The board is short, as it can be finished in thirty minutes if you choose to play ten mini-games (or an hour if you choose to play 15 mini-games), but the board feels long, slow and boring due to the way the characters move and the other problems contained in the game,which is disappointing, considering the fact that the game costs nearly $30 in United States and $45 (585 Mexican pesos/coins in 2012,currently 1,035 pesos/coins) in Mexico on the release date.
  7. Although the only objective in the modes is to entertain yourself and your achievements evaporate once the game is over, the mini-games available in Free Mode can only be unlocked once you have finished the Cup Mode. This point is delicate, because even if the Cup Mode has a relatively short and agile format, the mini-games that appear are completely random and completing all of them can take several hours. The above would be quite of a minor inconvenience (after all the goal of the game is supposed to force you to compete several times, if not, because playing alone can become a tortuous experience). To follow the trend set in this type of titles, if you play alone you must wait for the three characters managed by the computer to take turns before gaining back control of your character (additionally you cannot skip the turns of the computer players). At first, it's something you wouldn't notice, but after a couple of hours it begins to be exasperating.
  8. A considerable part of the charisma of the original series and to a lesser extent El Chavo Animated was lost here, because the game mainly focuses on minigames rather than visuals, what results in few character expresiones (more on that below), few animations (more on that below) and the almost zero visual comedy, in addition to Televisa's haste in giving Kaxan Media Group little development time (then a rookie developer) for the game to come out in the spring.
  9. Some of the mini-games are mediocre at best, and boring at worst, with most of the mini-games being ripped-off from other franchises, most notably Mario Party, there really isn't much variety and most minigames are clichés or forgettable.
    • Avión de Papel (Paper Plane): It's a pretty rough and unresponsive mini-game because of the motion sensor which takes a second to react, causing a guaranteed loss.
    • Tumba y Rebota (Tomb and Bouncing): It's a Bumper Balls rip-off from the first Mario Party. Here, your goal is to get the other characters out of the arena, but the controls are quite slippery (even more than Bumper Balls), and can cause you to accidentally knock yourself out of the arena.
    • Piñata Frenzy: It's self-explanatory, all you have to do is shake the control like crazy to break the piñatas and sometimes you have to press the A button (or the B button) to jump to reach some of the piñatas.
    • Futbolito (Mini Soccer): It simply doesn't respond well. You can see that you throw the ball, but it does not react at all, and the artificial intelligence is delayed.
    • Colorama: Turn the cylinders to match the colors to those in the central cylinder, the difficulty is minimal because you take a lot of advantage from the AI, for example, you can match the colors eight times and AI only matches the colors one time.
    • Ruleta de palomitas (Popcorn Roulette): Find as many popcorn as possible, selecting the correct container, it's easy, as you can simply keep your finger in the container with lots of popcorn and thus easily win and get a medal.
    • Aros (Rings): Enter the game of Señor Barriga, where you will have to throw rings at the bottle necks to score points.The problem with this mini-game is the AI, which is very demanding, more on that later.
    • Dardos (Darts):The controls are hard due to the Wiimote, time is very little and it's difficult to beat AI because of the problems mentioned above.
  10. There are also some flawed mini-games, such as those that ask you to shake the Wii Remote like crazy, without obeying a specific type of movement, and there are times when it is not clear what you must do to win a challenge, whether to shake faster, harder or with greater distance. These challenges are so obtuse that you could end up looking like Don Ramón, stomping in a tantrum; It is unfortunate, because if it had been developed with a clearer focus on movements, the gameplay would have been more entertaining.
  11. Most mini-games are quite easy and simple as many consist of using the control to throw objects or are based on clichés, such as collecting animals to take them to a corner, and the mini-games mostly don't have a decent challenge that it's really worth buying the game, since the reasons why some mini-games are difficult is because some minigames are based on artificial difficulty, ruin their concept and also the idea of an El Chavo video game, some examples of this are the unbalanced and poorly polished AI (More of that below) or controls or the mini game has a short description or because the mini game it's poorly programmed, which is unfair, considering the price of the game.
  12. Some mini-games have a slow pace, even those that last less than thirty-five seconds, for example, Tomb and Bounce and Paper Plane, plus the rhythm of mini-games is sometimes unnecessarily fast, like Colorama, where you only match less than ten colors of the center cylinder and the mini-game it's over, plus matching the colors of the center cylinder one time only takes at least five seconds, there's also Darts, where the other characters manage to hit the target many times and there's very little time that will make it hard for you to win a medal.
  13. The minigame collection is really inconsistant, for example, you can play a relatively normal and fair minigame and after being calm you come across a difficult (in the wrong way) and bad and/or boring minigame or that just doesn't work as it should because of the hasty development that Kaxan Media Group experiences by Televisa, really when you're having fun afterwards you get boring because of it kind of minigames mentioned above, also, the list of minigames is completely random.
  14. Poor graphics for a late Wii game (averages at best). The shadows of the game, the characters, lighting and the maps look like of a game of a fifth or sixth generation console (like the Nintendo 64, PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Sega Dreamcast, a launch title for the Nintendo GameCube or a launch title for the PlayStation 2), which is unacceptable, because the game was released decades after these consoles came out in the market.
    • Although the models of El Chavo and Ñoño are pretty decent, in particular, the models of Quico and La Popis look some ugly, although these models are better than the models of the next game.
      • La Popis is especially seen out of model in the game's opening scene.
  15. The board design is bad, it's just short and it's not attractive, something other games like Mario Party manage to avoid with their colorful, sprawling and attractive boards, it's a shame because the animated series is colorful and creative and the team behind the game were possibly able to rely on something that referenced the original series or the animated show.
  16. The characters animations, although the animations are decent animated, they are very limited, as there are very few expressions of the characters and there are few victory animations, in fact, there is no animation when a character goes down or climbs a ladder, they just make the victory animation and the character are teleported to another place on the board, which is a bit lazy.
    • There are also not enough expressions, and sometimes the characters do not blink, which looks weird, besides that because of this, the characters hardly express anything.
  17. There are few voice recordings of the characters (even when the game is set to English and/or Portuguese) and they are repeated throughout the game, which can be annoying, in addition, some audio clips of the characters are poorly recorded, In addition, most supporting characters have fewer than five dialogues, most characters only laugh, shout or say a short sentence, plus there are few expressions of the characters.
    • The idea of translating the game into English is a somewhat silly decision, due to the limited production of the game, it was not marketed in other countries outside of Mexico and Brazil, so it was not so necessary.
  18. Little variety of modes, with the only modes out there being Cup Mode (that as its name indicates, it is an "extensive" competition full of challenges), and Free Mode (which allows you to enjoy the mini-games at your discretion without having to go through the board and instead, you simply navigate through a minimalist menu).
  19. The character roster is lacking. It has only four characters (like in Mario Party Advance), which are the main characters of the animated series (El Chavo, Quico, Ñoño and La Popis), with the rest of the characters like Paty or Godinez limiting itself to being background characters. There are not even any unlockable characters that could make the game worth buying,in addition to extending the game time.
  20. The sound effects for the most part are generic and easy to forget, and they are quite loud, that you cannot even hear what the characters are saying,also some sound effects are compressed, so some sound effects are heard more robotic next to character dialogues, especially the Orale! of Ñoño, also most sound effects are taken from El Chavo Animated (which also are generic) but in this game some sound effects from El Chavo Animado were ruined due to the problems mentioned above.
  21. Jesús Guzmán as the voice of El Chavo and Sebastián Llapur as the voice of Quico can be annoying and sound very imitated, whereas some dialogues sound weird like the A su con permiso of La Popis.
  22. The game only has twenty-five mini-games (thirty mini-games if you count the Final and Extra mini-games), and depending on the duration of the Cup Mode, the mini-games can become very repetitive and tedious, something that other party games like Mario Party managed to avoid, hence why they are fun. According to Zebitas Martinex, the game may have had more mini-games that made references to the show, like a mini-game with Don Ramon's camera, a mini-game of take out a boxing glove, flying with balloons, Bowling, something related to square balls, the trunks, and a few others.
    • In a commercial,the text "28 fun challenges" is displayed, when in fact there are 30 minigames, although this may be because the development team was developing the last two minigames.
    • As mentioned before, there's only one board, which can be finished in 30 minutes or even less, wasting the potential of making more boards that make references to the franchise. It is rumored that the reason the developers of Kaxan Media Group decided to make only one board was so that the game would be released before the Wii became obsolete.
  23. As mentioned before,the game was not marketed outside of Mexico and Brazil (such as El Chavo Kart), because of this the game can become rare to find in other countries, so it may cost $30[1] for a copy in decent state of the game instead of the 17$ it costs in Mexico for a used copy.
    • According to some rumours, the reason of the exaggerated price is because the game production was very limited, and since it was sold in only two countries, it is even more limited and hard to get in another countries.
  24. Most of the mini-games have little explanation, making you not know what to do and more likely to lose,this is much worse for difficult minigames, the worst part is that there's no way to practice the mini-games (like the first Mario Party game and Sonic Shuffle, all that is available are the instructions). Don't know how a mini-game works? Too bad, there isn't a single practice mode for this game at all. It just relies on luck only, which is worse for younger players.
  25. Artificial Intelligence is a tremendous unbalanced disasters which is not well polished and results in several problems:
    • The AI can become excessively demanding, to the point of hindering your performance in the mini-games. An exemplary case is the mini-game where you must throw hoops towards a group of pots. It is evident that you must resort to your dexterity, but even if you are skilled with the movements of the Wii Remote, it is extremely difficult to overcome the precision and speed of your opponents.
    • The AI can also be very easy to beat, because it is not very well polished, besides that sometimes they are slow or they just don't try, so it results in you being able to win medals easily.
    • The AI sometimes doesn't even respond. Zebitas Martinex found that in a mini-game he was playing, La Popis stopped for no reason and she did nothing.
  26. The ending in Cup Mode are just images of the characters coming out of the book that teleports them and celebrating with background music, which is somewhat boring and disappointing because the start of the game and the story had an animation, not images with a background music. This could be also a hint that the game was rushed to the market.
  27. The game left a permanent bad stain in the video game industry in Mexico, considering that they where not going to achieve much because most games where either commercial failures or just shovelware tried to make a quick buck, although some developers have tried to improve it (like Elliot Quest and Kerbal Space Program), they didn't not manage to cover the stain that the game left and still people see the video game industry in Mexico in the same way.

Android and iOS Versions

  1. The games are either extremely simple, like the Shooting Gallery or finding the right object, while others are frustrating, like the Dodgeball mini-game, due of the mentioned control issues.
    • Dodgeball: In this minigame you must avoid and throw the balls that throw at you to hit El Justiciero Enmascarado and get the highest score, the problem are the controls, because you have to rotate the phone so that El Chavo can move, which is quite uncomfortable and worsens the difficulty, besides that El Justiciero Enmascarado throws you quite a few balls and because of the way to move from El Chavo ,doesn't give time.
    • Trampolines:The main problem (again) are the controls, which you have to swipe your fingers for El Chavo to move and jump, the problem is that because El Chavo jumps in Trampolines trying to move is awkward and gets stuck or just doesn't work, plus you can lose because El Chavo when he's going to fall loses the momentum he got when jumping,also,the collision is mediocre, you may be bouncing at first, but then you go through the trampolines and fall.
    • Shooting Gallery:You have to shoot the targets to earn the highest score, the problem is that you have to calculate in which direction to shoot the targets with the spring, but it really takes a long time and in some rounds the targets will go away and you will possibly lose.
    • Throwing cans:The main problem again are the controls, controlling the spring often requires a lot of precision, because due to its sensitivity the stones can go somewhere else and thus miss an opportunity, this does not help with the fact that you have to store the stones, for this you need to have a good aim and precision, otherwise later you will find obstacles that if you do not have the objects another chance will be almost impossible to throw.
    • The House of Terror of Doña Cleotilde:It's too simple, you have to select the right objects, if you choose the wrong object you'll lose time, at first it's very simple, with few objects you can easily choose the right ones, but then there are quite a few objects that will make it harder for you to win, this is good but there are a mistake, some objects jump, so it's easy to pick the right object but at the same time it's difficult because there are a lot of objects that look a lot alike, so it's hard to see if it's right or not, because you have little time and you should choose quickly so you don't lose, but if you choose the wrong item you waste time and that can cause that you lose.
  2. At the start, there are only 5 minigames to play, and most minigames must be unlocked and there is no clue how they are unlocked, either pass all the initial minigames in the highest rank or other things.
  3. You must have a decent score to get Coupons and buy things in the store, but due of the control issues that you will experience in nearly all mini-games, you're going to have a hard time getting anything from there.
  4. The ranking is unbalanced, since in most of minigames it is very easy to get rank A in a short time without any effort, in some minigames it is difficult to get the highest rank due to the bad and uncomfortable touch controls that make minigames more difficult and therefore, it can take quite a while, especially in the Dodgeball minigame.
  5. As said above, the collision in the Trampoline mini-game is quite bad. You may be bouncing at first, but then you go through the trampolines and fall.
  6. The Google Play Games achievements are easy to obtain and don't pose a big challenge at least if you don't care about the Very Rare achievements.
  7. Most sound effects (such as coins, objects and buttons) are unnecessarily noisy and rocky, which may bother you.

Good Qualities

Wii Version

  1. The characters' animations are well done, even though the animations are limited and there are not many.
  2. The aesthetics and colors are interesting and colorful, even though the lighting ruins them a little, they still look decent and capture the color palette and aesthetics of the animated series in a decent way, although the colors are not so attractive.
  3. Fortunately, this game emphasizes the participation of other players, so unless if you don't have someone to play with you, you can at least avoid the AI.
  4. Although most minigames are not very creative and are boring and clichés, some mini-games are decent or fun like Sillas Locas (Crazy Chairs),a minigame where Doña Cleotilde blows up the chairs and puts on a music and when the music is stop, players quickly have to sit on the chairs, Tira al Payaso (Throw the clown),a mini-game of shifts, where a player it's on a mobile platform where the other players have to shoot him for the player to fall, Decora el pan (Decorate the bread),a frantic minigame where you have to decorate the breads the way shown in the center and a few others.
  5. Sometimes the game is decently fun, especially in decent and frantic minigames or playing with friends or family.
  6. The interesting thing about the mini-games is the execution. To exemplify, a hen hunt, which implies depositing them on an egg and thus causing the chick to hatch; The peculiar aspect is that you can steal birds from your companions as many times as you want, and in fact, you are expected to do so if you want to win, there are many hectic and chaotic activities like this that stimulate player interaction in a fun way.
  7. The voice acting is acceptable, despite being too repetitive.
  8. There are some decent songs, like when the cup mode runs out.
  9. Almost all mini-games are at least easy to learn, giving accessibility for younger players to play them too.
  10. Decent multiplayer entertainment. In fact, most mini-games are more fun and fair because the game emphasizes multiplayer as stated above, so you can play with your family or friends in a fairer way than the AI.
  11. Decent story, despite their problems mentioned in BQ#5.
  12. The value of repetition is decent, even though how slow the characters move and that the challenges and mini-games appear randomly ruins it a little bit.
  13. The game had so much potential to be a great game. If Televisa gave Kaxan Media Group more time to developing it, and fix the story a bit, it would have been a great game.
  14. The concept of a game where El Chavo and the neighborhood are teleported to a board game is quite interesting, although the execution was mediocre.

Android and iOS Versions

  1. The House of Terror of Doña Cleotilde and Shooting Gallery are decent mini-games despite their problems.
  2. Good graphics for iOS and Android quality standards. In fact, it even maintains the artistic style better than the Wii version.
  3. Similarly to the Wii version, the simple mini-games are easy to learn, The House of Terror of Doña Cleotilde and Shooting Gallery don't have too much control issues, and are easy to get coupons.
  4. The dialogue and text boxes are fun and manage to have the essence of the animated series and a bit of the original show, In addition to better handling franchise references better than Wii's version, such as Doña Cleotilde's home is a horror house, the concept of a neighborhood fair is based on an episode of the original series and an episode of the animated series and on one that another text box mentions a reference.
  5. You can use in the game items if you play or you can get them in the store, and the items work well, among the most prominent are the explosive, which I take its name indicates, when launched there is an explosion that damages the targets, another chance, which as the name suggests, gives you another chance to be able to play more and reach a high score and a track, which as the name suggests, gives you a clue to do.
  6. As stated above, there are some decent songs, although there are not many, such as the carnival song.

Reception

The game received mostly mixed-to-negative reviews from critics, with more negative reception from players. On LevelUp!,it received a score of 6/10 by Daniel Dehesa[2], due to little variety of mini-games, almost no dialogue, insufficient explanations for certain challenges, repetitive music, the artificial intelligence and the little content, also saying "From the first time you play it, it is evident that the concept gave much more, especially since the aesthetics are attractive, apart from the graphic deficiencies. In the end, the collection of minigames is somewhat inconsistent, and had it delivered a more fierce competition, in which the characters' antics became more apparent, it may have resulted in a considerably more fun concept; who knows, maybe the design got out of hand". Some reviewers on YouTube were much critical with the game and gave it lower scores.

Legacy

Generally between 2012 and 2015 it was used as a joke and was usually known for being a disgrace to El Chavo del Ocho (and video games in Mexico in general), and one of the worst party games on the Wii.

Trivia

  • In early 2018, the mobile version was removed from the App Store and Google Play, alongside with the mobile version of El Chavo Kart because Televisa wanted to give a new image of El Chavo with the release of El Chavo Kart 2020 version and also because of their poor reception that the two mobile games had.
  • The Wii version is usually used as a joke because of how bad it is, the absurd concept, being easy or sometimes frustrating mini-games, and outdated graphics.
  • It is curious that the cover art of Brazil says "New Game For 2009", when the first news of the game was at the end of 2011, perhaps it was a mistake when they translated the cover art.

Videos

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