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Strategy Guide for Mogul Khan Axe

by thisisBob (as of v6.60)

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Axe is hero that requires the player to be a man. Axe requires balls, his playing style is to go in
and take on the world. The more attacks that are directed to Axe, the more he'll beat the shit out
of everything in his range. If you are a KD ratio obsessed pussy, then this guide is not for you.

1. Introduction

Mogul Kahn, Axe

Suspended from highschool after taking too much stimulation drugs, Axe grew up as a red
skinned ballet dancer with a cantankerous personality. Avoid him at all costs.

Starting Stats:
Str : 25 + 2.5
Agi: 20 + 2.2
Int: 14 + 1.6

Movespeed of 290

Axe is a hero with a theme based on judo. When somebody attacks him he gets all pissed off and
proceed to kick ass until he dies from the amount of blows he has taken. I plan to exploit that.


Whats new on the 6.50 series?

Axe's starting strength rose from 19 to 25, meaning that Icefrog stuck a free belt of strength on
him. Of course he also lost 2 agility, but agility's a shit stat anyways, so in general he had quite a

The neutral area had a dramatic change as well, but Axe is still capable of jungling inside. In
fact, with the improvement of creep quality, his overall revenue increased. That, and Scourge
jungle doesn't suck anymore, horray.

One of the core item Blink Dagger got nerfed hard, but it's not going to effect you. You're a
raging beast, not a little pussy, you'll be using dagger all the same.

Things are looking good in 6.50.

Oh hey helix had a 2% increase in chance. Mathematically he deals... 20 extra damage or

something. Nothing to be ranted about in the balance forums, but a nice change nonetheless.

2. Skill Descriptions


Berserker’s Call:

Mogul Kahn is so manly that his roar messes with your head.
All enemies in 300 AoE are forced to attack him.

Level 1 - 1.5 seconds, 5 bonus armor.

Level 2 - 2 seconds, 10 bonus armor.
Level 3 - 2.5 seconds, 15 bonus armor.
Level 4 - 3 seconds, 20 bonus armor.
Cooldown: 14 seconds.
Mana Cost: 80/90/100/110

There’s a half-second casting delay before the effect takes place, so it is best used to catch
enemies off guard. Anyone with half a brain won't just let you get into that radius, so ambush,
chain stun, or get dagger.


Battle Hunger
Battle Hunger is here to take up space and fuck you up. Learning Battle Hunger detracts your
manliness. Learning Battle Hunger will also make Axe start listening to Vanilla Ice and let his
mom cut his hair.

Level 1 - 15 damage/second, lasts 10 seconds.

Level 2 - 15 damage/second, lasts 15 seconds.
Level 3 - 20 damage/second, lasts 20 seconds.
Level 4 - 25 damage/second, lasts 25 seconds.

Cooldown: 25/20/15/10 seconds.

Mana Cost: 75/85/95/105

Whats this? A 25 second duration damage spell? Women wait, pussies wait, morons wait, but not
Axe. This is Icefrog's trap to turn Axe from a complete melee psycho into a hiding wuss.

Battle Hunger is a damage-over-time skill with a easy-to-achieve precondition. It tempt

opponents into hitting creeps so that Axe can run in and chop him up. Unfortunately, even with
the buffed mana cost and cooldown, Axe cannot use this effectively if he still wants space to do
Berserker Call, Culling Blade and Blink Dagger.

Furthermore, unlike other DoTs, Battle Hunger doesn't have a secondary side effect such as slow
or silence. It lasts too long for it to become effective and team fights and unlike other nukes, I
find it only to be useful for 1/4 of the game.

Thus, this strategy guide does not require Axe to learn Battle Hunger.

Counter Helix
When someone hits Mogul Kahn, he has a chance to flex and deal massive damage.

Level 1 - 17% chance to counter with 100 damage.

Level 2 - 17% chance to counter with 125 damage.
Level 3 - 17% chance to counter with 150 damage.
Level 4 - 17% chance to counter with 175 damage.

Counter helix is a great skill. Although further levels only increase damage only by 25, it makes
a difference when several helix takes place. This skill is essential, in this guide Counter Helix
heavily used for hero killing, harassment, and farming.

Counter helix generally works if there are multiple creeps attacking you, each attack gives you
17% chance to spin. The damage really gets tuned down during lategame as armor helps against
it, but hey, it's still 175 damage.

Note: each helix have 0.6 seconds delays before another spin can proceed.
Helix deals physical damage, goes through avatars and magic immunes.
Some people say that the wc3 engine rounds the percentage down to 15%, that is false, Axe has a
definite 17% chance to spin.
Quick facts about counter helix
• Helix deals physical damage and can be reduced by armor.
• Helix cannot destroy plague wards/serpent wards/death ward

• Axe can still helix during stun and hex

• Helix goes through magic immune neutrals (golems, dragons)

• Helix doesn't interfere with your attacks, if you attack twice per second, and you had a helix that seconed, you still attack twice per
• As to above, helix doesn't stop you from casting culling blade or berserker's call.
• Helix initiates the second the enemy attacks, not when the projectile touches Axe. So if a druid of the talon swings his brown stuff at
you, you spin the second he does the attack animation.
• Helix does give you little pauses on moving when you're being chase-attacked, but it's insignificant, and if you say helix is bad
because of this, I will slap you.
• Tower attacks does not activate counter helix
• Serpent/Plague/Death Wards will not activate counter helix
• Counter Helix will still activate if the enemy misses an attack.


Culling Blade
Purges the weak from Mogul Kahn's sight. Deals moderate damage, but will kill a target that is
low on life.

Level 1 - Deals 150 damage, will kill if target is below 300.

Level 2 - Deals 250 damage, will kill if target is below 450.
Level 3 - Deals 300 damage, will kill if target is below 625.

Cooldown: 75/65/55 seconds.

Mana Cost: 120/160/200

Culling blade checks if the target is below the certain health, if it is it deals 10000000 physical
damage to it, if not then it deals the said damage reduced by magic resistance.
Killing target below 300 hp at lv6 is not as violent as Lion’s or Lina’s ults, but it’s enough.
Also, this cooldown is relatively short compared to others, with a rather cheap mana cost to

Culling blade goes through magic immunities and abaddon’s ultimate.


3. Skill Builds
My skill build is fixed, and I invest in berserker’s call and counter helix equally, generally
berserker’s call first as it disables the enemies longer.

1 Counter Helix
2 Berserker’s Call
3 Berserker’s Call
4 Counter Helix
5 Berserker’s Call
6 Culling Blade
7 Berserker's Call
8 Counter Helix
9 Counter Helix
10 Attribute Bonus
11 Culling Blade
12-15 Attribute Bonus
16 Culling Blade
17-21 Attribute Bonus
22-25 Battle Hunger

A common mistake is to max out Counter helix too fast, leaving only lv2 of berserker’s call. You
should be ready to kill around lv6, it’s best to keep the enemy around for a longer period of time
so you can finish him with Culling Blade.

Berserker's Call first, as 0.5 seconds of disable can prove more useful than some rare 25 damage

Alternative Skill build: Counter Helix at lv5 instead if you are heading to the jungle.


3. Item Build
Core Items
The items below are must-haves

Animal Courier - 225

Most of your gears come in small pieces, please grab a furry slave off your friend or buy one on
your own

Tango of Vegeterian Essification - 90 each

Tango is a good for axe, because often times he will come intact with the enemy before the
duration is up. Tango is also cheap and provides you healing at half health, where as RoR is too
slow. Why not RoR? Your inventory will be tight-packed very soon and you cannot afford to
pass up a slot for RoR.

Flask of Sapphire Water - 100 each

Sapphire Water has been buffed, they're actually worthwhile after 6.44! The healing time has
been reduced to 10 seconds and mathematically it provides more healing/gold ratio rather than
tango. When would you want to buy Sapphire Water? It may be viable when you don't involve
yourself too much in the lane (tower hugging for example). Or when you decide to devote 3/4 of
your early game farming neutral creeps.

Stout Shield - 300

Stout shield is the perfect item on Axe. Two stout shields provide higher chance of blocking 30
damage, perhaps 64% or so (with diminishing returns). Creep’s damage will never exceed 30
damage unless the racks are down, with the shields you are physically immune against creeps.


lets put stout shield stacking in a mathematical order:

1 Stout – 40% block, if 5 creeps attack you, you only receive damage from 3 of them.
2 Stouts – 64% block, if 5 creeps attack you, you only receive damage from 2 of them.
3 Stouts – 78% block, if 5 creeps attack you, you only receive damage from 1 of them.

Vitality Booster - 1100

Further survival against nukes and focus-fires, something Axe needs mid game to tank for his

Vanguard -2275

You won’t be rushing this right off the bat, but one point or the other a vanguard is necessary to
give you more inventory space. One vanguard will only block 3 out of 5 creeps in a creepwave, it
does not provide absolute immunity against creeps…. yet.

Hood of Defiance - 2350 OPTIONAL

as Axe, I'm very hesitant about buying hood, because your dagger will come in really late.

Use your own judgement and see if nukes will overwhelm you or not.

Kelen's Dagger of Escape- 2150

Dagger is your chasing tool, it helps you position yourself for a Berserker's Call. This works
especially well on pussies that run away when they see you. Of course, with proper juking and
foresight you can also use it to escape. Dagger now has a range of 1200, you can pretty launch
yourself into melee range beyond a hero's line of sight, making it a very powerful initiation item.

4. Late Game Item Commentary

Axe is set after he buys dagger. He will have about 1600 health, respectable armor, and decen
mobility to own his way through midgame. You may continue to aim for the following:

Heart of Tarrasque - 5500

Heart gives Axe pure tanking power in the forms of fat, greasy health. Axe’s health will be
somewhere near 3000 by lv16 with a heart. This is useful against heroes with spells and damage
orbs which armor can’t deal upon.

Radiance - 5325

The effectiveness of Radiance is dependant on how long Axe lasts in the crowd. At first the
immolation damage may not seem like much, but the damage is worthwhile. For example, if Axe
manages to immolate 3 heroes for 5 seconds, he will deal a total of 35*5*3*.75 = 393 damage
that neglects armor. Radiance should only be gotten if you're doing well though, otherwise it
takes too long to build up and Axe wont be as beefy enough to use.

Assault Cuirass – 6320

In this expensive item set, Axe gets his much wanted 15 armor. On top of that his enemies have
-5 armor aura and his friends gain +5 armor. Armor is most useful for heroes with high health
because Blizzard’s war3 armor formula is that every 1 point of armor gives effectively 6% extra

Get AC when physical damage plays a major role in the game. Although your 55% IAS is
thoroughly wasted, if your enemies now take 8 hits to kill instead of 10, you have helped the
lategame heroes on your team. Additionally, because your counter helix is based on physical
damage, the armor diminishing aura makes your helix more powerful as well.
Boots of Travel - 2200

Boots of a travel is just a utility item overall. Don't get it to help me farm (Axe's lategame is
meh), get it if your team is on the offensive edge and you want to finish the game fast. BoT
allows you to teleport after death and/or perform multi-wave push, which is extremely useful
when you just finished ganking a group of people. As a rule of thumb, BoT before heart/cuirass
if you know you have what it takes to push into the racks.

Armor or Health?

After the core items, you may be confused over what aspect to boost on Axe. Would Axe tank
troll better with a reaver or with a platemail? We all know that armor is better when Axe has
more health, but to what extent?

Ignore the damage reduction displayed from your armor for now.

Each point of armor gives 6% Extra HP(EHP). That means with 10 armor and 1000 HP, you are
as if you had 1600 HP naked against physical attacks. The higher your HP, the more
amplification you get from that EHP.

If you are confused over armor or health, you should consult this graph for information, it shows
most everything you need from armor 0 to 20.

Notice that on the chart I've calculated something called 'Real HP', it means the total amount of
damage you can take with your max HP and the EHP given by armor. This also explains why
tiny dies so fast.

Items not worth getting in midgame:

Some items are not worth it, they sound good on paper but their effectiveness is questionable.

do not get the following items

Power Treads: 10 strength is great, but vitality booster gives better health, and BoT would be
ultimately more important if you're done with the luxury. Axe's attack is also quite pitiful, and
the attack speed is rather useless.

Helm of Dominator: Don't bother with this item, don't get satanic for this item. 15% lifesteal
does little help to your shitty damage output, also, your helix will not drain life. The armor
helps a bit, but you know - with 400 less gold you can buy a platemail.

MKB, Buriza, Battlefury: MKB and buriza is not effective on Axe because his damage sucks
shit. Radiance is the best instead of those two as it deals damage without Axe launching any
attacks of his own. Battlefury is a retarded concept for Axe and the amount of people suggesting
it makes me upset, even as extreme late game items, Axe will never be in a place to dish out solid
attacks. (Unless it's -em and you killed 25 people, but that's out of the question)

Sange and Yasha: you can gain 304 hp provided in this rather expensive item set. Thats about it.
The maim is good but unreliable, and blink is superior to movespeed in terms of chase. Why get
this instead of a heart? I don't know. Axe is better off as a tank.

Manta Style: A fun item, because all 3 of your images can helix for full damage. However it will
not synergize with anything else. You won't gain much use from its stats given, you can't use
manabreak orb efficiently, you may have use for purge before the manta, but it's limited, and the
images die in 5 pops as it won't inherit from your godly shields.

Blademail: Theoretically blademail is something that destroys melee heroes, but they are only so
good on paper. You need multiple blademail to stand out as impressive, but that diminishes your
inventory and completely shuts down your lategame. This item barely counters any hero in dota,
sure some might lose 20% of their health punching you, but usually the reflection is shared
between 5 heroes as they each pound on you. You will then realize that you don't really do
anything. Let's hope this item becomes more useful in the future.

Mjolnir: Yes, I know, Axe deals 500 damage or something if he calls a group of heroes with
static field on. Agility is a useless stat for non-agi heroes, Axe's attack speed is not impressive to
take advantage of the orb, and you will spend your first 6000 gold investing in useless
equipments that will not benefit Axe in any way. Get an agility hero teammate to get Mjolnir for
you, if you're that desperate.


5. General Game Walkthrough

Early Game (Lv1 ~ Lv9)

Axe, being a melee hero with no reliable nukes, is not the best early game hero around. Jungle is
the best place to be.


Jungle Axe

Jungle is the best way to build up Axe's early game. If your team can
handle 2 solos and you'd like to reach lv6 just as fast as the solo, be
the manly beast you are and follow these demonstrations.

Videos upda ted as of 6.50b

Sentinel Side Jungle Sample

Scourge Side Jungle Sample

for more on the subject, read my guide to jungle axe

If Jungle is not an option, I prefer bot lane (top lane if playing for Sentinel), because there are
lots of ambush spaces and hiding spots to avoid getting nuked.

Choose your lane partners carefully, preferably one with a reliable stun. For example, pair up
with Leoric so that he can storm bolt an enemy then you follow up to do berserker call.

Against early game nightmares:

(These examples may not always be true, judge accordingly)

Your nightmares are Ranged Heroes, Mages, Chain-Combo Nukers. They are a pain in the ass.
Because Axe is slow, he cannot catch up to most ranged heroes. They will hinder Axe’s ability to
farm, and if Axe tries something aggressive Axe will usually get nuked before impact.

Stay defensive and tower hug, eventually these early game heroes will attempt to hunt heroes in
another lane. Either that or scroll down and consult the concept of Jungle Axe.

Against appetizers and preys:

(These examples may not always be true, judge accordingly)

Axe can handle heroes who are melee or have no damaging nukes. Farm freely and get grab
stouts fast so you can ride a creepwave with no damage.

By scaring the enemy away or blending him really hard, you gain an early game advantage.

Here are some early game tactics that will make your life less painful:
even though most of them have already been covered two months ago in the advanced gameplay section... you read
them, right?

Drawing creep aggro: When you right click(Attack) an enemy hero, the creeps will attack you
as their in game AI to defend the hero. If you immediately draw back the second you attack the
enemy hero, creeps will ignore their current target and all focus on you. Doing so you attract the
creeps' attention and move them to your side so that you may last hit them without the enemies'
projectiles flying into your face.

Neutral creep pulling: consult this Guide (Guide belongs to SirFootin, vote him for premium!)
Hide in Fog of War: Top/Bot lanes have many cracks in the forest. When the enemies have an
overwhelming advantage over your lane, you can hide in these cracks to leech exp. As long as
you are in the 1000 range for gaining exp you will gain experience and not get harassed. Your
enemies may run into the forests to search for you, but because they're busy last hitting and
denying you, you can see them and they can't see you.

By Lv9, you inventory should almost look like this

• Stout Shield
• Stout Shield
• Boots of Speed
• Vitality (sold for space later)
And you should be working your way to Vanguard

Even if you only have one boot and two stouts, you are already dangerous enough to slay unwary
enemies in the neighboring lanes. At this period of the game, two helixes will be enough have an
enemy open to your culling blade. Also, when everyone hits around lv9 and start leaving their
lanes, Axe can have a great time farming off creeps and neutrals. So even if your early game isn't
that good, you have another comeback chance during midgame.


Mid game (Lv10 ~ Lv16)

Midgame is where Axe untaps all his killing power and becomes a psycho blending machine that
nobody can endure. Counter Helix is best used on lane pushes instead of ganks, so plead your
teammates to start pushing the first towers together. With your high health you should be able to
shake off the nukes and attacks to buy your team the time to strike back. You have all the reason
and power to tank for your team.
The kind of position that Axe would want to get himself into during a fight.

If no teamfights or gank are occuring, Axe can go creep. Creeping is a breeze for him because
nothing can hurt him. He can rack up money pretty fast which is important when he needs to
make a 2150 gold breakthrough to buy dagger. Don’t bother creeping as much once you have

Equipment wise, you should complete vanguard by buying RoH so that you have a space
available to carry TP scrolls. Sell your Gaunlet of Strength / Stout Shield when you finally
farmed another 2150 gold to get your dagger.

As a frontline tank it's advisable for you to creep skip and take on the next wave alone. Of course
with the nerf of blink dagger you should proceed with caution, but usually in a team push it's the
best position for you.

So this is the inventory you should be looking at:

Boots of Speed
Stout Shield(Ring of Basilius*)
Dagger of Escape
Spare slot (sell your additional Stout/Gauntlet)

* In scenarios where physical attacks are dominant, armor provides more benefits than pure
health. You may switch for Ring of Basilius. This is when you are sure that the game will not
drag on for you to grab your lategame equipments. Though somewhat little, it does give you that
extra second of survivability. As well as partial mana regeneration that constitutes as an extra
blink. It beats trying to save for your reaver, then realizing that the game is already over.

With dagger around Axe becomes extremely versatile. In a team fight, blinking and calling key
heroes like Enigma is essential for the outcome of the fight. When running away, flying through
a cliff or river will guarantee Axe to live. Axe becomes an extremely dangerous individual with
high health and physical shielding.

The purpose of this peak condition is that Axe’s team must make a breakthrough by being
significantly superior against the other team in group fights. This way your team can penetrate
the racks and game ends there. If not, at least try to suppress the enemy so that your lategame
hero teammate can carry the game for you.


Late game (Lv17 and onward)

Everyone runs around with expensive stuff while you hit lv16, most towers are down, and
massive team pushes begin.

This is when lategame heroes shine, you're not exactly a lategame hero - it will be your job to
make your lategame teammates rock, this can be done by tanking with call, making sure that
nobody touches him while he kills everybody.

Axe should be done with his core item build and perhaps midway to one luxury item. If you
would like to stay in the battlefield longer you should invest in heart, otherwise if you think you
last long enough when fighting, feel free to go for Radiance or AC instead.

You should realize that all of Axe’s skills become less effective as game reaches late. Your
berserker call doesn’t seem to make you bulletproof anymore, your counter helix deals minimal
damage, and culling blade can only get rid of a hero at 25% of his HP. Because Axe doesn’t have
any skills that boost his fighting power, he will not be the fearsome freak he once was. You may
be freaked out when you get killed by a meepo. Your only job is to be your team’s cannon
fodder; tank enemy heroes to buy time for your teammates.

your team's performance is based on how much time they have before the tank dies - so that is
your major role.

Tank them all.


6. Screenshot Section
This scenario shows a little bit of gambling and a quick thinking. I know that I will die if I back
off, so I had no choice but to push my luck.
This scenario shows that not only Lycan and nightstalker can fight under a tower.

Farming with Axe (possible whenever you've got stouts)

this is quick cash without thinking - making Axe is darn good farmer.
this is a demonstration of how to blink-berserkercall a fleeing opponent. Always blink in front
of your enemy's pathway, or you will miss.


7. Enemies
Axe don't like them

There really a lot of counters if they’re played right, but I’ll just name the obvious ones:


N'aix is anti thesis to your being. You can't stop him, you can't outlast him, and you can't tank
him. Feast chews you up easily and you have nothing to stop him from doing that. Repick would
be a great option, if not then avoid him at all costs.
Fuzzy Wuzzy

What applies to N'aix would also apply to our Fuzzy Wuzzy. While we all have our fantasy to
wrestle a grizzly bear in hand-to-hand combat, Fuzzy Wuzzy's damage is beyond what you can
handle. Hope that your team has enough nukes to get him out of the way, because your
berserker's call wont be enough.

Percentage Based Nukes

Percentage-based nukes are most effective against fat chunks of lard such as yourself. The best
way to avoid it is through initiation with blink dagger. Nevertheless, percentage-based nukes
chips you down fast.


7. Allies
The kind of help that you want the most

Dazzle's Shallow Grave: You want to convince Dazzle to spam Shallow Grave on you , because
you will be the one dying for your team during midgame pushes. With it, you will be able to
reach dagger in no time.

Dark Seer Asshole: Dark Seer is formidably gay when supporting a melee tank such as Axe.
Then again, who doesn't he go well with?. Ion Shell deals severe injury to Axe's tanking
enemies. Surge is the prime factor of landing a Call in an early/mid game gank. Wall of Replica
hurls a helixing axe image to the enemy non stop(not to mention radiance later). Vacuum-Call,
although extremely gay, is probably only available with the use of Ventrilo.

Morphling's Replicate: creates your clone that will also helix for full damage. Two swirling
tanks ensure chaos.

oh and he also benefits from stuns and AoE disabling ultimates... but tell me one hero that


9. Random Tips/Hints

Breaking the berserker’s call

you can continuously click on stop when Axe got you in the berserker call state, however, it will
not prevent Axe’s helixes from going off.
The following information is quoted from ngtes with no edit to any of the lines

by spamming stop u all are committing suicide. cuz when u spam another command, u will still
be forced to attack him. so u will "TRY" to attack him ALOT ALOT ALOT of times, but not
exactly attacking him yet.. and on each "ATTEMPT" to attack him, that triggers the 15% counter
helix.. so instead of just normally attacking him 1/sec, ur TRYING To attack him 5 times/sec,
increasing the chance of getting couter helixed by alot more.. so that basically will get u killed by
counter helix..

Bugs from berserker’s call

When someone in berserker call’s state became stunned, shackled, fiend gripped or
dismembered, the victim can move as if the disabling effect weren’t there.
To solve this known issue, time your calls carefully and warn your teammate of this bug when
attempting a gank.
recent versions did not fix this bug, the enemy can still move during a stun
Does helix trigger in Chronosphere?

The answer is yes, and not just once. As investigated by OrangeGuy


i just managed to try Axe vs Void in a 1 on 1 lan game with my friend, and when we were able to
have a long enough chronosphere with him attacking it actually went off twice, he says 3 but im
not sure

what, you want evidence? here it is! You ego-mongering freak!


10. Frequently Asked Questions


Q: But all the mods use BoT instead of dagger?

I think Axe is too slow and BoT is not enough to catch up the enemy without having Axe’s team
screwed over first. Dagger is the only way you can land a perfect call and kill off the weaker
heroes. The teleport feature can be paid up by TP scrolls.
Q: Whats your position on BkB/Armlet/Shiva's Guard/Mjolnir/[Insert Item Here]?

Please don't indulge me on how your 120 minute long game resolved when you bought BkB
against a 500 int Harbinger, all items are situationally useful and I really don't feel like listing
optional items that work 5% of the time.

Q: Where's the early game armor?

Axe starts out with moderate armor - but enough to keep him running against physical attacks
early. Early game revolves more around spell damage and not physical attacks, plus your stout
shield blocks a high percentage of your opponent's damage at that stage. Axe should buff his
health instead of trying to stand out against physical damage, it would be more beneficial to
invest your effort in midgame, rather than trying not to get trashed lategame.

Q: I have a hard time killing heroes with more hp because my damage is really low!

this build is a team build - your role is to tank, make it so. Sure you can get kills by first being a
berserk psycho on crack, but that's only early/mid game. Later in the game you are the frame for
the other dps heroes on your team.


I prefer an early AoE disable better. I don't like the duration of hunger since it takes too long to
be effective.

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