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March 25th, 2019, 02:36
Originally Posted by ToddMcF2002 View Post
Yeah I’m going to say “no” to this game being more tactical or in any way more realistic than DS. If someone cuts your throat because you ill timed your swing and left an opening your “posture” would be quite irrelevant.

The way I read "posture" is how good are you managing to keep your guard up. Think a boxing match, the two boxers begin the match with their hands up and firm blocking and deflecting every blow easily, their feet are quick, their stamina is plentiful. As the fight advances and they wear each other down through the rounds, their fists begin to fall, a gap begins to open between their arms as they block, their feet become sluggish. There is a point where one of the boxers finds the opening and knocks the other boxer out in a single brutal hit/assault. I imagine From Software wanted to represent a similar fashion in high level combat between trained warriors. If you pay attention, Sekiro has some enemies that are not really warriors, like giant lizards and dogs, and those have no posture, those die with any single hit you deliver. The posture is what represents the warrior's wholeness and discipline that gets whittled down as the fight advances.

And honestly, being more realist and tactical than DS isn't even a merit. DS aka "roll to win" games, where you just repeat a single attack movement or pattern against huge hp sponge demons or gods. It's not like videgames have to be realist anyway, and DS are definitely fantastic games for those who are into it, but it's only fair to say that Sekiro is closer to real combat, and you need to play more tactical, and less cheese. Otherwise it's just misleading those who haven't played it. Youtube and Twitch are swamped with videos of it anyway, so anyone's free to check and judge.
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March 25th, 2019, 06:46
Very handsome effort. With more role-playing content it could almost work as a Japanese Witcher.
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March 25th, 2019, 06:49
DS and Sekiro combat isn't as dissimilar as it might appear. What's happened is the Stamina bar has been changed to a posture bar and actions that required stamina use in DS, like dodge or sprint or attack, are now free to use in Sekiro.

In DS if you blocked with a shield you'd lose stamina ("posture") and if it got below 0 you'd stumble and be open to a front backstab. It worked both ways and if you hit a blocking enemy enough times he'd stumble and you could frontstab him. It's the same in Sekiro.

All Sekiro has done is removed the OP ability to backstab an aware opponent and has allowed blocking with your weapon - which was also possible with a lot of weapons in DS, like greatswords, but wasn't often used because the reduction to physical damage was inferior to a real shield.

Also, instead of a parry button you now parry by bringing up your block at the last second which has freed up a key/button to be used exclusively as Jump and now with an easily accessible jump button a few new systems have been added like jump-attacks and using jump as a defensive option, such as jumping over cleaving attacks or bouncing off enemy heads or walls to get positional advantages which would not have been possible in DS.

Balancing the power of blocking has been simplified by not having 50 shields with varying damage reduction numbers. This is a reason the game appears harder. The steamlining of the DS systems and removal of some OP systems means the fights are always the intended difficulty. No co-op friends to beat bosses for you, no grinding to raise your STR. The only way to improve your Vitality and Attack Power is to beat bosses.

That said, while you can't grind your stats up you can grind your skills up and also find arm upgrade materials in the process. This will allow you more tactical options to try while keeping the damage numbers balanced. You'll also find more buff potions to give you the edge.

Also, as in DS, exploration and running ahead collecting things without fighting, finding bonfires then backtracking with everyone expecting an assault from the way you came, this sort of thing is still viable and expected. Most the "main" bosses will lock you in, but there are far more optional bosses you can just run past and come back for later. Eventually you will have to fight a "key dropping boss", but explore and be aware of how far you can go without running into a blocker boss. Using exploration is a great way to find a few extra Estus flask seeds or necklace pearls which will really help your progress.
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March 25th, 2019, 06:57
Combat is too hard for me, I can't stop fighting like it's DS or BB. Enemies are just laughing at me.
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March 25th, 2019, 07:56
Originally Posted by Ryder View Post
Combat is too hard for me, I can't stop fighting like it's DS or BB. Enemies are just laughing at me.
What does "like DS or BB" actually mean? Does it mean you ignore block and parry because you're used to using a 2h weapon and just using rolls?

Which enemy is giving you trouble? I'm going to assume you'll say "all of them".

Well, the tactics for the early "trash" mobs is really nothing difficult.

*tactics spoilers warning!*

The gun users get broken poise in about 2 hits. You CAN block and parry ranged attacks. Just spam dodge sideways and zig zag up to them or hold up block and walk forward.

The basic sword guy with a hat is the defensive guy. After you hit him 2 times he'll get a hit in, so attack, attack, block and he's done.

The basic guy with no hat is offensive and rarely blocks so if you get the first hit in just spam attacks and he's dead. If he gets the first hit then block his whole combo.

The torch guys are easy. Just spam attacks.

The axe guy can be a little harder. But if you have the skill to use combat arts mid-air then do a Whirlwind attack as you jump at him. Use firecrackers when you land and you can whirlwind him again.

The fatty ogre guys will eventually do a combo that lowers their posture a shitload so just dart in and out doing 1 hit until you see him start his unblockable combo then dodge backwards and he'll do 75% of his posture damage to himself.


Remember that holding down block makes your posture recover faster! (in Dark Souls it would make stamina recover SLOWER so this is something not to be overlooked! In Sekiro you always have a 100% reduction block(shield) which would make DS shield users jealous by encouraging you to keep your block up rather than let it down sometimes to speed up stamina(posture) recovery. I think this tip alone might change the way you view combat encounters. )

Also, the parry window is massive. It's better than a parrying dagger or anything from souls. Half the time you parry by accident because you went to block. Plus if you're locked into blocking you can still let go of the button and try to get in some parries without lowering your block. Just block the first hit then try to parry in time to the hits. Pay attention to the sounds.

Another great tip is use your resurrection to run back and rest. Then you never lose your souls.
Last edited by SirJames; March 25th, 2019 at 08:09.
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March 25th, 2019, 10:37
Nice and useful pointer SirJames. Just like in DS, careful observation can make the game much easier. Of course, easier said then done, especially when 1000% of your attention is consumed on defending from enemies who are extremely deadly. By the way, I never noticed fat guys are damaging posture by themself. Nice hint :-)

Observation and careful and focused execution. Yeah, another similarity with DS. If your focus starts to deteriorate and you start to get bashed from trash mobs, better take a break.

I have to say, the deeper Im sinking my teeth in the game, the more I like it. And I really like the combat, even though I quite suck especially during long fights with bosses. During these long exchanges of attacks and parries I always make some critical mistake. In such cases I usually look for some advantage to compensate. Jumping to roof or ledge which enemy cannot reach is usual strategy in such cases :-)

I really like how many bosses on first tries have this feeling "its absolutely impossible to do it". But after several tries and carefull observation, some weakness is found and by exploiting it, the boss suddendly can be defeated.

Of course, Im sure that those crazy robots among us, with cybernetic level of eye-hand coordination can finish each bossfight only using basic parry/dodge/attack, while picking their noses at the same time. Im definitely not one of them, so usefull tricks come in hady. On the other hand, I managed to kill several bosses before I realized its possible to sprint in this game, so I cant be so bad after all :-)

I have to say, Im missing more depth in RPG mechanics. Really would like to see From Software making souls game that takes best from both approaches (meaning Sekiro and DS).
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March 25th, 2019, 11:21
Originally Posted by SpoonFULL View Post
DS games cater for different styles of play and builds to allow you to customise your game according to your ability and make progress. This makes the DS games manageable and enable fun exploration and discovery.

I have not played Sekiro but from what people are saying it is forcing one style of play to succeed. Is that right?
Well, there are no different builds and you are stuck with your sword as main weapon. That alone significantly limits ways how to approach the combat (compared to DS). On the other hand, there are some possibilities for different approach.

First, there is stealth. So instead of direct atack you may use environment and stealth mechanics to take down additional mobs or even stealth attack the boss even before the bossfigt starts. That usually cost the boss one half of the health, which makes fight significantly easier.

Then the fight is affected by skills choices you made while "leveling". For example skill that allows defending from thrust attacks make fight with spearmen much easier. Also its possible to jump and use prosthetics for long distance grappling hook jumps. And you are not limited by stamina for sprinting. Much less limited movement during combat provides additional options by itself, compared to DS. Then there are upgradable attachments to prosthetic arm, like axe, surikens, flamethrower, perhaps more (didnt see more yet). Each with their use against different enemies.

I have to say, combat itself is great fun in Sekiro, even though it does not stand on deep RPG mechanics.
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March 25th, 2019, 13:09
SirJames made a very good, informative post about how Sekiro and DS/BB are different. I would also make emphasis on the fact that there are multitude of "combat styles", which are really talent trees that allow you to customise your play-style. It's probably possible to grind skill points to max out all of the "combat styles" you find, but that's a lot of repetitive grind and not fun or probably intended (think how in souls games people settle for level 80 builds, while technically you can level infinitely). Also, you can only equip one "Active" combat skill, which also defines your play style. You might want to go for an AoE attack, a single target heavy attack, an attack that catapults you in the air after hitting and sets you up for further maneuvers… just to mention a few.

These also make sure you can keep progressing even if you get "stuck" at some boss or area in the game. If you find you can't advance, you can probably do a couple of rounds clearing trash mobs and level up a couple skills and then try again. You only lose half of the skill points you have accrued towards the next level when you die, once you've locked in a skill level, you can never lose it again, so in that regard Sekiro is less punishing than Dark Souls, where you could easily lose 10 levels worth of souls. And although in Dark Souls you were given the possibility to go back to collect your souls, in Sekiro there is a chance that you won't suffer any penalty at all from dying (chance begins at 30%, can be raised or lowered depending on how good you're doing. The more you die, the less the chance will be in general).
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March 25th, 2019, 17:18
Stamina? No.

Posture is the new poise. Iím surprised no one sees this.

Stamina is a resource. Used when performing actions in DS. Stamina depletes when sprinting, dodging, blocking, attacking, etc. you donít need to be hit while blocking for stamina to go down, it goes down by blocking alone. You actually replenish ( reduce posture bar) when holding block in sekiro and faster than when not blocking. Stamina can be fully depleted outside of combat. When you run out of stamina you wont be able to perform actions such as attack, dodge, etc until it replenishes. If you run out of stamina in combat and get hit you can be staggered but just running out of stamina alone will not stagger you.

Poise will build up when youíre hit or hit while blocking and then when it breaks you will stagger.

Posture will build up when youíre hit or hit while blocking and then when it breaks you get a deathblow.

Only difference is in DS you get staggered and in sekiro you get a deathblow. Also in DS you have the ability to effect how much poise you have.

Both DS and sekiro can be cheesed. You can clear areas easily in sekiro if you just sneak in and backstab leave until agro settles and repeat. Also sprinting in to an area will allow you to backstab several enemies if spacing is good. Ive actually found that sprinting is all thatís required a good portion of the time. Sprint through an area an instant kill as many as you can, sprint out. Only takes a few seconds for agro to end then sprint back in. Almost all mini bosses can be sneak attack removing one bar of posture. Since Iíve stoped dodging and started sprinting the game has become much easier.

When people describe DS as ďroll to winĒ i assume their either parroting something they read or only played DS one way. Many people turtle everything and roll very little. Itís an often used and effective strategy for DS.

Niether game has hp sponges. If you think DS has HP sponges then youíve just have a poor build or weapon for the job. For example a proper build with sell sword twinblades combo with weapon art will 2 combo most bosses.

DS strength is that is can be played in many different ways. It excels at this. Sekiro on the other hand regardless of your strategy you will need to play fast. The game encourages you to be constantly attacking or blocking attack to keep the posture meter rising. If you lay back the meter will go back down. You can kill without deathblow but that will greatly extend the length of combat.

As for realism, neither is very realistic. They arenít supposed to be there supposed to be fun. Which both are imo.

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March 25th, 2019, 17:35
I’m reading / hearing about a lot of pushback on game difficulty. Particularly on YouTube. Has anyone hit a brick wall?
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March 25th, 2019, 18:06
Originally Posted by ToddMcF2002 View Post
I’m reading / hearing about a lot of pushback on game difficulty. Particularly on YouTube. Has anyone hit a brick wall?
Most "real bosses" in Sekiro have taken me quite some practice to get down in a process of dying and adapting. The Lady Butterfly made me sweat blood for a couple hours, I'll admit, but I'm not the most terrific of gamers, I just have fun with the whole process of failing and improving. Mini-bosses used to own me hard as well, but after you get some practice with the general game mechanics it becomes much more intuitive to get them down even on the first pull.

I think after a while you just become "fluent" in Sekiro and will do well even on fights that at first felt impossible.

As for Posture = poise: No. Poise was just a flat numerical value that translated into a % amount of stamina damage reduction from blocking attacks, and there was nothing that altered that value, other than the pieces of armour you were wearing, in quite linear ratio of weight : poise. Nothing you did mattered towards your poise - not attacking, not dodging, not parrying, nothing. Just how heavy were the pieces of armour you were wearing. Posture is a lot of things, and none that have to do with what armour you are wearing, since well.. you don't even wear or change your armour at all through the game. You damage more posture by executing certain abilities or counters in timely fashion, dodging, parrying, and relentlessly attacking is often the least efficient way to damage posture - while that was pretty much the only way you could get over someone's poise in DS. Poise was there just to offer a simpler valid gameplay choice to heavy armour users , allowing them to turtle and withstand blows rather than dodge them as light armour mobile builds would do.

Saying poise = posture is again misleading and false.
Last edited by Nereida; March 25th, 2019 at 18:25.
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March 25th, 2019, 18:14
I do find it difficult, and I'm having a harder time with it than with Bloodborne. Granted, it took me awhile to start feeling competent with Bloodborne and I've only invested about 10 hours into Sekiro, but the two games make an interesting contrast. A lot of my time here is spent in stealth, stalking and assassinating enemies until I can take one or two of them head on. Fighting multiple enemies is a recipe for a quick death, though some skills help. The real challenge comes in head-on duels, particularly against mini-bosses. (The Chained Ogre was a cakewalk for me compared to the General right after him.)

Ultimately, it feels like two games in one: a Tenchu-lite stealth assassin game (with some acrobatic platforming tossed in) anda samurai/ninja dueling game, where the latter sports a combat system with above-average difficulty. A lot of the challenge happens because you spend three-quarters of your time in the first of those two games, so the second one has a steep learning curve that can feel like a wall.

Contrast that with Bloodborne (or the DS games), where every single encounter - constantly, in every environment - is more practice for the core combat system. That's just not the case in Sekiro.

I suppose you could always decide to forget stealth and head into every area with sword drawn, but the game is designed to make that very, very difficult. Crowd control is really tough; facing more than two enemies at a time is problematic, even lower-level enemies. The game clearly intends you to either avoid a lot of footsoldiers or pick them off via stealth.

It's a beautiful game, and I'm enjoying it a lot. But it hasn't quite clicked with me yet.
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March 25th, 2019, 18:19
It's also worth noting that the game has a totally different feel than the "Soulsbourne" titles. In the latter, it's really a behind-the-back camera that feels pretty tethered to your character and moveset. In Sekiro, the camera is often farther back and you have much more of a sense of traversing the level. The verticality plays right into this. From Software has clearly inherited a lot from their past work, but this is still a different genre - not like Bloodborne was to Dark Souls, but a different dish entirely.
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March 25th, 2019, 22:55
Originally Posted by ToddMcF2002 View Post
Iím reading / hearing about a lot of pushback on game difficulty. Particularly on YouTube. Has anyone hit a brick wall?
This is what I'm most afraid of. I just don't have that quick hand-eye coordination anymore. I'd like to get this game because it does look fun, but I'm afraid I'll pay $60 and never get past the first mini boss.
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March 26th, 2019, 00:03
Originally Posted by Nereida View Post

As for Posture = poise: No. Poise was just a flat numerical value that translated into a % amount of stamina damage reduction from blocking attacks, and there was nothing that altered that value, other than the pieces of armour you were wearing, in quite linear ratio of weight : poise. Nothing you did mattered towards your poise - not attacking, not dodging, not parrying, nothing. Just how heavy were the pieces of armour you were wearing. Posture is a lot of things, and none that have to do with what armour you are wearing, since well.. you don't even wear or change your armour at all through the game. You damage more posture by executing certain abilities or counters in timely fashion, dodging, parrying, and relentlessly attacking is often the least efficient way to damage posture - while that was pretty much the only way you could get over someone's poise in DS. Poise was there just to offer a simpler valid gameplay choice to heavy armour users , allowing them to turtle and withstand blows rather than dodge them as light armour mobile builds would do.

Saying poise = posture is again misleading and false.
What DS are you talking about as poise was nonexistent in 3 but critical and people made build specifically around it in DS1.

As I said armor affects your poise as do some rings and a spell or 2. not sure what your arguing there.

Poise has nothing to do with stamina. It is it's own value. each weapon has it's own poise damage value and when your hit its applied toward your poise. so a great sword will break your poise long before a dagger will. so different weapons will break your poise faster or slower. also poise regenerates ( sound familiar, just like posture?)

I was going to type a whole bunch more on this but really what's the point ? lets just look at poise and stamina and compare to posture and I'll let you decide.

-In DS stamina can be reduced outside of combat. Posture cannot
-stamina is reduced by sprinting, attacking, casting, dodging. posture is not.
-Stamina is reduced and depleted and recovers very quickly (in seconds). Posture is
built up and breaks and recovers slowly.
-the penalty for running out of stamina is not being able to perform actions or if you get hit while out of stamina is a stagger.
- the penalty for a posture break in a deathblow.
- stamina is reduced by holding block, posture is "regained faster" by holding block.

-poise builds and breaks, posture builds and breaks.
-poise damage varies depending on the weapon you're hit with, posture damage varies depending on the type of attack you're hit with.
-poise damage is taken or given by getting hit or blocking, Posture damage is taken or given by getting hit, blocking or getting parried.
-the penalty for a poise break is stagger or stunlock, the penalty for posture break is deathblow.

It would seem poise is much closer to posture than stamina. I'm I missing something?

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March 26th, 2019, 05:00
The point is that Posture is neither poise or stamina. It possibly even has a psychological element in it too as the warrior could think "damn, this guy keeps dodging and parrying my attacks", which slowly chips at his general performance. We'd have to ask the developers for a more accurate definition of their intention, but it's not equivalent or similar to neither poise or stamina, it's something entirely new that possibly takes elements from both poise and stamina, but also more complex concepts like warrior's resolve or discipline, if we were to make an equivalence to real combat terms.
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March 26th, 2019, 06:47
Poise is about taking hits. If two people in DS are using the same weapon and start R1 spamming at exactly the same time the guy with lower poise will have his attack interrupted first and need to roll away. There is still effectively a hidden poise value in Sekrio, but the interrupts from taking direct damage to health are very short.

Stability is the value you'd look at while blocking. More Stability on a shield means you lose less stamina for blocking and get knocked back less, etc. If there was a Stability value in Sekiro it would be very high for the sword like a Black Knight Shield and the umbrella would be a Greatshield.

Neither poise nor stability can be influenced in Sekiro as it's all part of the carefully balanced combat but they're both still there. You can see your Poise in action when you take a hit without blocking. You can see your Stability in action when you block a hit. Stamina is not there as it's been changed into Posture.

Another difference in Sekiro is Posture recovers slower as health gets lower but stamina did not.

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I haven't hit a brick wall, but I couldn't beat General Ashina so I went exploring and now I have 5 more bosses that I need to go back for. I'm starting to feel like Ashina would be easy now since I have 4 more flasks, upgraded my flask skills and have found 12+ more prayer beads so maybe his lightning attack won't 1shot me anymore. Definitely still making good progress.
Last edited by SirJames; March 26th, 2019 at 07:50.
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March 26th, 2019, 10:21
For first several hours the game felt quite linear, which made me somewhat disappointed. But later on it seems more directions for exploration open up. I dont know if these will be just short dead ends, or something more. I hope the exploration routes will be complex and even interconnected at some points creating small world in similar way like Dark Souls.

Yesterday evening I didnt make any progress as I made attempt to switch from mouse+keyboard to Steam controller. I had it in the drawer for about year, unused, as I was very disappointed by it in past. Now I wanted to try it on Sekiro as From Software is supporting it from the beginning. And I have to say, Im extremely surprised how well it works. And without any additional setting-up, control scheme created by From Software is very fine. Of course, it took me about 2-3 hours to get initial grip on it, but now I can cheese through the trash mobs easily and I only need to test it on some juicy bossfight. Im convinced I will stay with it instead of m+k. Genuinely surprised.
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March 27th, 2019, 05:39
I'm an old school dark souls player and never had a huge amount of problem progressing through the game with mouse and keyboard. Sekiro frustrates me enough to not be fun though. Part of my issue is that there seems to be much less margin for error.

I do suspect though that some of my issues may be M+K related. The game sometimes just isn't that responsive. Sometimes I have to hit a key multiple times for something to happen, and some moves like dodging are really awkward to do on the keyboard. It's possible that I might have more luck with a controller, although I've never needed one in the past.
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March 27th, 2019, 16:28
Originally Posted by fadedc View Post
I'm an old school dark souls player and never had a huge amount of problem progressing through the game with mouse and keyboard. Sekiro frustrates me enough to not be fun though. Part of my issue is that there seems to be much less margin for error.

I do suspect though that some of my issues may be M+K related. The game sometimes just isn't that responsive. Sometimes I have to hit a key multiple times for something to happen, and some moves like dodging are really awkward to do on the keyboard. It's possible that I might have more luck with a controller, although I've never needed one in the past.
I'm playing this on PS4, where I also played Bloodborne (obvs). (I played the DS titles on PC with M/KB.) Even compared to Bloodborne, on the same hardware and controller, Sekiro feels markedly less "responsive". Based on my experience so far (just about to enter Ashina Castle and have completed most of Hirata), I think it has to do with the lack of i-frames and the lag with "dodging" in this game.

If there are any i-frames at all, I can't spot them. And post-dodge, it feels like it takes forever to get block up again. On the other hand, control feels pretty much instantaneous if I alternate between block and parry, no matter how madly I alternate those two, so I think this is by design. Instead of using dodge as a default movement, Sekiro really treats dodging as narrowly situational - no more common than, say, jumping in the middle of combat (which is the right response to sweeping attacks but pretty much no other time).

My biggest lesson has been that movement feels laggy in this game (compared to Soulsbourne titles), but sword mechanics feel very snappy. Despite the awesome mobility provided by the grappling hook, and the hit-and-run ninja tactics you can use for footsoldiers, Sekiro really wants dueling to be more about standing and blocking/parrying. (That said, dodging backward is still super effective once you start picking up skills with more reach - you can dance out of melee range, dart in for a strike, and jump back. But if you're in attack range, don't expect to be able to quickly alternate dodging and blocking.)

Another factor contributing to this, tho, is that the game doesn't reinstate blocking automatically, even if you're holding down the block button. E.g., dodging will cancel your block (of course), but you can hold the block button the entire time and you still won't start blocking again until you release it and re-press it. That feels…weird. Ultimately, compared to other recent From titles, this game feels simultaneously less responsive (due to the issues mentioned above) and more demanding of finger acrobatics.
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