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Here is a sentence from an adventure game:

Although the game doesn't let you create your own character to play, you’ll like the ability to choose heroes, then mix and match their weapons and gear for both visual and strategic effects.

I am not sure about the last part (bold words) of the sentence above. Which of the following is their intended meaning?

  1. You will have the ability of choosing heroes and then mixing and matching their weapons and gear.

  2. You will have the ability of choosing heroes. Then you can mix and match their weapons and gear for both visual and strategic effects.

The first meaning says that the said ability contains three actions. The second meaning conveys that the ability contains only one action. I am quite confused here.

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    I'm confused, which actions are you talking about? According to what I understand, the second meaning is just a more explained version of the first meaning – Bella Swan Jul 10 at 5:32
  • I should have explained in a better way. I meant to ask how many actions are included in the said "ability". – curious Jul 10 at 5:35
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    It simply means that the player would have the permission to choose heroes and then mix their weapons so it would look good, and you'll have the better playing strategy as your characters would be stronger with those new weapons. That's what ability means. The permission you are going to have to mix the weapons. – Bella Swan Jul 10 at 5:38
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"Then" is used to show that one event comes after another. Apparently, choosing a character to play as in this game is a two-stage process:

  1. Choose a hero.
  2. Mix and match their weapons and gear.

The earlier part of the sentence is something of an apology that you cannot "create" your own character from the ground up, but goes on to explain that, while you can only choose from pre-existing characters, once you have done that you can then "customise" them by "mixing and matching" (an idiomatic expression meaning to select and combine different but complementary items) their equipment.

The final part of the sentence "..for both visual and strategic effects" is not a third step, but just a qualifying statement on the purpose of mixing and matching weapons and equipment. Apparently, some of that customisation is for "visual" purposes only (perhaps choosing the colour of your character's armour? something that will have no effect on gameplay) but some may be for "strategic" reasons, ie choosing a particular weapon may actually have an effect on the way the game is played.

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