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 Post subject: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:01 pm 
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Well, as said, what we really need is to use new, unique ways to implement puzzles.


I proudly present the Aquadron, one of our three puzzles entering the Nob Yoshigahara
puzzle design competition. I had this idea very long time ago, but was being patient.

It must be the first time a one piece mathematical puzzle uses water. The Aquadron is similar
to the Cubedron, but this time, the pyramids float inside the water, and the empty space stays
at the bottom! The goal is to connect the head of the Medusa jellyfish with its four lots of tentacles.


Attachment:
Aquadron_1.jpg
Aquadron_1.jpg [ 33.23 KiB | Viewed 2840 times ]


This is the goal:
Attachment:
Aquadron_how_to.jpg
Aquadron_how_to.jpg [ 28.33 KiB | Viewed 2838 times ]


Video here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6S2F-adxnwU

I don't know about others, but I surely LOVE this puzzle!

:)


Pantazis

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:06 pm 
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Thats a nice water puzzle:D

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:16 pm 
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Sven wrote:
Thats a nice water puzzle:D



Thanks! :)


By the way, the video was not made by me, but it was made in Singapore.
I hope to have a copy in my hands soon so that I can present a solve,
as well as some nice moves which I can demonstrate in a much smoother way!

;)


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:27 pm 
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such a cool concept


thats an extremely creative variation of the cubedron

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:28 pm 
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kastellorizo wrote:
Sven wrote:
Thats a nice water puzzle:D

By the way, the video was not made by me, but it was made in Singapore.
I hope to have a copy in my hands soon so that I can present a solve,
as well as some nice moves which I can demonstrate in a much smoother way!


I can't waight to juggle with those puzzles:P

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:35 pm 
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Such an amazing idea! At first i was like "just another cubedron variation :roll: ..." But the water and opposite gravity effect is amazing!!! please mass produce these asap :D

ps. be careful not to put it in a freezer :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:42 pm 
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Brilliant concept! Truly innovative, just like your cubedron. I wish you the best of success with this.


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:57 pm 
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Really cool idea. I was wondering if you were going to design one with water. The clear sphere just screamed to have liquid inside.

-d


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:11 pm 
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Very nice concept, kind of like a reverse gravity version of your cubedron.

It would be nice if you could get rid of the air bubble - will that appear in all the puzzles, or is this just a prototype? I have seen other, non-puzzle products with water sealed inside, like compasses and those shakeable snow scenes, but most of these have air bubbles trapped inside, or perhaps they appear as the water slowly diffuses through the plastic over time. I have seen some products with no air bubbles, but this must be a tricky manufacturing problem as you would need to degass the water under a vacuum, then quickly seal this within a non-permeable plastic once it is already full. Probably you can live with the air bubble, but I think it would look much nicer if you could get rid of this, otherwise it will always float to the top and distort your view of the puzzle.

One other thought - how long does it take to move each piece? Given that the pieces fill much of the space, are made of plastic which is only slightly lighter than water and yet water is much more viscous than air, I imagine it would take a few seconds for each piece to float into position. The beauty of Rubik's Cube is that you turn the layers as fast as you can think, but it looks like this will react much more slowly. I guess it will require a lot of patience, but more anxious people might find this a bit frustrating...

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:26 pm 
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kolorblindartist wrote:
ps. be careful not to put it in a freezer :lol:


Actually, I would be worried about ordering one of these in the winter. I've had packages that are extremely cold upon arrival (sitting out in -30 F will do that) and wonder what would happen with these.

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:30 pm 
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I thought you were joking about this one! :shock:

So, when's the Muesli-with-fresh-milkdron coming out? :mrgreen:

-Jon

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:33 pm 
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Bryan wrote:
kolorblindartist wrote:
ps. be careful not to put it in a freezer :lol:


Actually, I would be worried about ordering one of these in the winter. I've had packages that are extremely cold upon arrival (sitting out in -30 F will do that) and wonder what would happen with these.


Maybe he could come up with some sort of water solution that doesn't freeze until the air gets unbelievably cold?

Still, This took a minute to get, but now I am in disbelief at how you took a puzzle who's concept revolved around gravity, and changed the way the concept would work! Unbelievably innovative, in my opinion!

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:37 pm 
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That is a truly beautiful puzzle idea. No speed solving on this one :)

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:46 pm 
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Thanks all for the kind words! :)

Regarding the freezing issues LOL. If we sell it in the future, the puzzle will be sold without water.
In fact, it should be a puzzle without water (inside stickers) or with water (outside stickers).
The water is supposed to be easy to fill or to take out. It is not that difficult issue anyway!
(the version we have is like that already!!!)
But do not expect this to be released soon. There are many other puzzles in line!

Also, this puzzle cannot be compared to the Rubik's Cube. Every time I like to think of a new puzzle,
I always try to think outside the box, instead of having my mind fixed to twistable puzzles. The concept
(actually it is a combination of more than one simple concepts), movement, and goal are all different.
And with proper research, issues like speed solving could be resolved.
I grew up on a small island, so I can master the water quite well! Trust me on this!
In fact, this puzzle was supposed to emulate the *smooth natural movement* of the jellyfish.
For the speedsolving one, I may implement a dolphin version!

;)


Pantazis


PS. And Jon... the muesli version really made me laugh loud LOL

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:53 pm 
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One of the most innovative new puzzles in a long, long while. This is amazing, and I can't wait to own one, haha.


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:55 pm 
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Ooooo! This looks very interesting. As for the freezing issue, what if you used some sort of clear inert oil. Something that wouldnt "eat" the plastic. That way, you would never have to lube it! :lol:

It would a permanent though.

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 9:00 pm 
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Caphits wrote:
Ooooo! This looks very interesting. As for the freezing issue, what if you used some sort of clear inert oil. Something that wouldnt "eat" the plastic. That way, you would never have to lube it! :lol:

It would a permanent though.


Like moonshine or whiskey?

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 9:06 pm 
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Very cool puzzle! This was a nice way to eliminate the crazy clicking noise the Cubedron makes! :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 12:10 am 
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Man, what an amazing puzzle. If I could I'd love to have one of those. The effect of having it filled with water is really cool, provided it's strong enough to withstand any leaks.


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 1:33 am 
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That is soooooo cool!

How would this be mass produced? How do you ensure that it is sealed tightly?

One problem with this is that it can't be taken on a plane! Oh well.

-π (Eitan)

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 2:30 am 
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Amazing concept! At first I wasn't even sure how it turned. I hadn't considered that the water is actually denser than the plastic.

And did you guys even read his post?
kastellorizo wrote:
If we sell it in the future, the puzzle will be sold without water.
In fact, it should be a puzzle without water (inside stickers) or with water (outside stickers).
The water is supposed to be easy to fill or to take out. It is not that difficult issue anyway!
(the version we have is like that already!!!)

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 10:47 am 
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oops. sorry Danny.

-π (Eitan)

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 3:27 pm 
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Wow, what a beautiful puzzle. I really hope this one is produced soon.

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2009 2:08 am 
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Thanks for the incoming kind comments! :)

Regarding the bubble on the top, yes it is some issue we dealed with last month.
Optimally speaking, the puzzle should NOT have a bubble at all. That way, the water will force
the pyramids on the top and then the pyramids will sort of "lock" on the sphere's internal walls,
enabling for the rest of the pieces to move smoothly when we rotate the entire puzzle.

Now, if there *is* a bubble, it creates movement difficulties in more than one ways.
(still, a small enough bubble *can* be acceptable - but not optimal).
And since water can get out in many ways (accidental or not), a way to refill is mandatory.

:)


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:22 am 
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I agree that allowing for refill as and when required is the only viable solution.

Stopping air bubbles forming altogether is virtually inmpossible: either they get trapped when the puzzle is filled, or they slowly come out of the water (where air is dossolved) after the puzzle has been sealed, or they can even appear as water vapour diffuses out of the puzzle over time. Using oil instead of water is also not a viable option, because plastic is heavier than oil so the plastic pieces will not float in oil as they do in water.

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:26 am 
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Amazing puzzle! :D
It changes the Cubedron to another level, with all logics inverted.
Congratulations for the idea!

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 4:38 am 
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Kelvin Stott wrote:
Stopping air bubbles forming altogether is virtually inmpossible: either they get trapped when the puzzle is filled, or they slowly come out of the water (where air is dossolved) after the puzzle has been sealed, or they can even appear as water vapour diffuses out of the puzzle over time. Using oil instead of water is also not a viable option, because plastic is heavier than oil so the plastic pieces will not float in oil as they do in water.



Allow me to add a few more "factors":


- 1. The material of the pyramids can suck in some water too. That makes the pyramids heavier
and the water less, so it is double bad! (in the end, they are so balanced, that they never turn!)
- 2. Quarantine Inspection: once they open it, they never close it as before (I received it via DHL,
it was dripping, and I even got a $50 customs inspection bill! aaaargh).
- 3. Temperature, small cracks or bumps, can slightly change the volume of the sphere and/or the pyramids.
And while this is unnoticeable to us, the appearing bubble, is definitely noticeable!

;)


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 5:49 am 
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kastellorizo wrote:
The material of the pyramids can suck in some water too. That makes the pyramids heavier and the water less, so it is double bad! (in the end, they are so balanced, that they never turn!)


One idea to avoid this problem: you could remove the inner 4 faces of each pyramid, but keep the outer face (with the picture) and all 8 edges so that the pieces are open like a parachute. This would stop water getting trapped and make the pieces turn more freely with less resistance. The puzzle would also be easier to refill, and cheaper to make as you use less plastic!

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 6:49 am 
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Kelvin Stott wrote:
One idea to avoid this problem: you could remove the inner 4 faces of each pyramid, but keep the outer face (with the picture) and all 8 edges so that the pieces are open like a parachute. This would stop water getting trapped and make the pieces turn more freely with less resistance. The puzzle would also be easier to refill, and cheaper to make as you use less plastic!


One of the people of the Singapore Team tried that and it had failed miserably, despite my warnings that
it won't work. A parachute design is only needed to stop something from moving, not to enforce it.
(and sometimes it helps to move to the other way, so it is double bad).
In fact, I was furious when I saw the video he sent to me, as it wasted some valuable time we needed
before the competition deadline. Aaah... must control my temperament sometimes!
It works fine as it is (more than acceptable) and we only plan to do new modifications in far-future designs

After all, I was raised on a tiny island (near Atlantis), so water is my second nature!

;)


Pantazis


PS. Once, while trying to hold my breath and go through a long dark underwater path to surprise my friends
on the other side, I was stung by a poisonous jellyfish. Not a pleasant experience, but a memorable enough one,
to inspire me to give a perfect theme to such a puzzle (the Aquadron movement is exactly jelly-fish like!)

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 2:22 pm 
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I'm not sure I understand why this idea didn't work - unless you tried something slightly different to what I had in mind. My suggestion was to keep only the outer face of each pyramid with the picture, and join the four corners of this face to the fifth corner at the center with four rods, without the other four faces. Having no side faces should make the pieces easier to tip round, at least in theory...

According to gravity, all objects will accelerate at the same rate as long as there's no resistance, so the rate at which the plastic pieces float up to the surface should depend only on their resistance to motion through the water, which is determined by their shape, size, and the viscosity of water. Therefore I was suggesting to use a shape that should give less resistance to the sideways turning motion through the water, by removing those sides which directly face the direction of motion, while keeping the face with the image which should actually help to guide that motion smoothly. Essentially, the idea is just to allow the water to pass through the piece as it turns, like this:

Attachment:
Aquadynamics.jpg
Aquadynamics.jpg [ 42.12 KiB | Viewed 2833 times ]

Still, if you've definitely tried this and it didn't work, then I guess there must be some other factor(s) at play here which I don't quite understand. Hmmm... :?

In any case, very nice puzzle, the movement looks great on the video (more than acceptable, as you said) and so I sincerely wish you every success with it. :D

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Last edited by KelvinS on Wed Jul 08, 2009 7:34 am, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 7:43 am 
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Have finally received the Aquadron prototype from Singapore
and I was able to make a new video with a solve, without a bubble!!!

Video of the solve (as well as some extra explanation) here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GoegdAo2diU


Attachment:
Aquadron_03.jpg
Aquadron_03.jpg [ 166.27 KiB | Viewed 2832 times ]



;)


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 7:57 am 
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I SO want one of these! Even more than the first one.

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:04 am 
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katsmom wrote:
I SO want one of these! Even more than the first one.

Nothing more to add.



Q

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 8:07 am 
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GOOD JOB!!

It looks fantastic, you must have been very excited to open the package. :D

Good luck at the competition, it really is a very unique puzzle, one of a kind!

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 10:13 am 
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thats awesome

do you find it easier with the piece on top so you can see it?


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 3:42 pm 
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eye2eye wrote:
thats awesome

do you find it easier with the piece on top so you can see it?



ok, here is some short description of the differences between Aquadron and Cubedron:


Cubedron: you need to look at the bottom at times.
Aquadron: All the action is on top (i.e. in front of you).

Cubedron: general movement can be super fast.
Aquadron: general movement is certainly slower, but much more elegant.

Cubedron: pyramid movement is natural.
Aquadron: some time is needed to get used to the opposite type of gravity!

Cubedron: the appearance is natural.
Aquadron: the appearance is very glamorous, as if it was all made of crystal.

Cubedron: very light.
Aquadron: heavier, but for obvious reasons feels more solid.

Cubedron: almost no reflection.
Aquadron: the water effect, when combined with light, makes the stickers look "ocean like".

Cubedron: One of the most difficult puzzle of the series for a new user.
Aquadron: Very friendly to new users, especially to Rox!

:)


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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 4:04 pm 
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Will those also be available at the games convention in October? :)



Q

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 Post subject: Re: Aquadron, the dominance of the Medusa!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 4:32 pm 
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Q wrote:
Will those also be available at the games convention in October? :)



Well... not *this* October! (we plan to have them ready for the "usual" Toy Fairs in 2010)

;)


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