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Messages - Donald X.

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1
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Safe to buy Renaissance now?
« on: September 28, 2021, 12:16:21 pm »
I bought Dominion: Renaissance when it was brand new and the colors on the back of the cards were too bright. Was that ever fixed?

I'm looking to buy Renaissance again and gift my old copy to a friend who is fine with the colors. If it has been fixed, how can I tell which boxes are updated with the right colors?
Renaissance was fixed immediately, and I believe recently reprinted. I don't have a copy of the reprint though so I'm not sure.

You can tell them apart from the back cover. The old one says 2018, the new one 2018, 2021. Also the new one has the UKCA thing next to the barcode, which is a thing related to the UK splitting from the EU.

2
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: September 27, 2021, 02:31:00 pm »
What will the symbol be for Allies?
This certainly comes close to being something I'd actually answer about an unreleased expansion. I'm still measuring it as over the line though.

3
Rules Questions / Re: Coffers Rules Change
« on: September 27, 2021, 01:59:55 pm »
Is patron better worded as "if it's not your buy phase..."? That way it works more often.

BTW presumably debt needs a rule change too?
I haven't looked at debt yet. It's worth considering though.

Yes Patron could specifically look for the Buy phase. Almost everything else is the Action phase though.

4
Rules Questions / Re: Coffers Rules Change
« on: September 27, 2021, 01:56:12 pm »
Still, I think it would be possible to change Spices' wording in order to keep its functionality in most cases, by changing it to:
"When you gain this, at the end of this phase, +2 Coffers."
I considered and rejected that. It maintains previous functionality better, but is some weird text that I don't think I need.

5
Rules Questions / Re: Coffers Rules Change
« on: September 24, 2021, 02:15:04 pm »
You give a good reason for errata-ing Patron in the wiki, but could you expand on the reason for errata-ing Merchant Guild? Its wiki article only says "With the new rules to Coffers, you would be able to spend Coffers that you gained from Merchant Guild during the same Buy phase."

Though this would strengthen MG significantly, I don't see why it would make MG overpowered. If you immediately spend the gained coffers on further buys, MG essentially becomes kind of a Bridge variant: Instead of a cost reduction by $1, you immediately get $1 back for each buy.
While Bridge is a very strong $4 card, MG costs $5, so it should be okay for it to be usable as an "almost immediate" cost reducer.

Spices seems more problematic to me: With the coffers change, it effectively becomes a $3 card that's strictly (and significantly) better than Silver whenever you have 2 coffers (or a spare $2) at the beginning of your buy phase.
The fix to Merchant Guild preserves its existing functionality, as well as possible. The intention of the Coffers change was not to make cards turn into different cards; Merchant Guild would still like to be Merchant Guild.

There was no such simple fix possible for Spices. I can e.g. Remodel into Spices, then use the tokens the same turn.

At the same time I consulted experts. The feeling was that Spices was not really so different. The value in the tokens lies in saving them for later.

6
Rules Questions / Re: Coffers Rules Change
« on: September 23, 2021, 11:35:48 am »
"While in play" is confusing in a way that "this turn" is not. That's what it comes down to.

So you're not worried about the change in power level? Goons was already pretty powerful, now it seems that it will be insane whenever there's a Throne Room in the kingdom. Maybe the same can be said about Groundskeeper and some others.
For a typical card, I'm not worried. For specific cards, details will have to wait for those sets to be reprinted.

7
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: September 23, 2021, 11:34:57 am »
1) What's the reason for the new errata replacing "While this is in play" with "This turn"?

2) Will Goons get "This turn" too?
It's all about simplicity. "This turn" is easier for players than "while this is in play."

Merchant Guild is getting this errata, whenever Mixed Box next gets printed. That's the only thing official currently. Merchant Guild needed errata anyway, to deal with the Coffers rules change (which is also about simplicity). People know about Merchant Guild because the Temple Gates Games version of Dominion is only ever going to have the new Coffers rule, so it needed the Merchant Guild (and Patron) errata immediately.

Specific wordings of other cards will remain a mystery for now. I didn't forget about Goons, I didn't just scribble some text on it and figure it would be fine with no testing and then move on.

8
Rules Questions / Re: Coffers Rules Change
« on: September 22, 2021, 01:29:20 pm »
You said that these are in the TGG client already, but I guess since it's still in Beta, the card texts could theoretically change again and that's why it's not official yet?
Yes. The TGG program needed the wordings, since it will only ever have the new Coffers rule.

The idea to the Coffers change is to have it work more like people do it irl. It's simpler. The rule was trickier just to deal with Merchant Guild; instead Merchant Guild should deal with itself.

So this means that "while in play" will be removed from all cards? Wow. We have these:
Bridge Troll, Goons, Groundskeeper, Haggler, Highway, Hoard, Lighthouse, Merchant Guild, Princess, Quarry, Royal Seal, Sauna, Talisman, Tracker, Urchin

This is certainly not a "change as little as possible" move from Donald! Throne Room + Goons! I wonder why.
Exactly which cards will change and how is still not official; wordings will become official as sets are reprinted, and you will see my exact choices then.

"While in play" is confusing in a way that "this turn" is not. That's what it comes down to.

9
Rules Questions / Re: Citadel and Captain
« on: September 22, 2021, 01:24:10 pm »
Since we are offering suggestions, I can repeat what I posted in another thread - keeping Citadel exactly as is (or as was), and instead rephrasing the new rule:

"An effect that tries to play a card can only do so when the card is where the effect expects it to be. However, an effect that replays cards can always replay a card that has been successfully played."

(I would actually phrase it a bit differently, to include the concept of losing track.)
This direction is sounding promising, though there is still a printing of Citadel with the "instead" wording.

10
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Dominion: Allies
« on: September 21, 2021, 03:50:18 pm »
I know of no additional info that can come out before previews. What languages it will be in initially?

11
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: September 21, 2021, 12:31:02 pm »
How soon will Allies be available to play online?
No sooner than physical copies are available (but possibly exactly that soon).

12
Rules Questions / Re: Citadel and Captain
« on: September 20, 2021, 02:25:27 pm »
Wouldn't it be easier to add somthing bracketed like "( a "leaving it there" clause continues)"?
That sounds baffling to me. "Why does it say to leave it there? What am I missing?"

13
Rules Questions / Re: Coffers Rules Change
« on: September 18, 2021, 12:39:52 pm »
also: No changes for Spices or Silk Merchant?
No change for those.

14
Rules Questions / Re: Effects of the new playing card rule
« on: September 15, 2021, 02:45:00 pm »
Are there any other consequences of this rules change?
I think you will be able to find corner cases that this fixes. I don't know them offhand.

15
Rules Questions / Re: Citadel and Captain
« on: September 15, 2021, 02:44:12 pm »
Before the new rule for playing cards, how does this interaction work? You play Captain, and next turn you play a Smithy in the supply, leaving it there, then Citadel replays it - and puts it into play? Meaning that the Smithy is now yours without you having gained it?

After the rules change, I guess it's very similar. You play Captain, and next turn you choose a Smithy, but instead of Captain playing it, Citadel plays it and puts it into play, and then plays it again. You get the Smithy.

Am I missing something?
This is correct and of course not intended.

My tentative fix is "The first time you play an Action card from your hand during each of your turns, play it twice instead."

I don't know for sure if copies of Renaissance were printed with the errata, but that's my best guess, that they went out months ago.

Playing a card puts it into play, and if it wasn't yours before, it's yours now. However you can't put the card into play (and thus can't play it) if it isn't where it's expected to be.


16
Rules Questions / Re: The new rule for playing cards - like lose-track?
« on: September 10, 2021, 01:16:21 pm »
Play Vassal. Discard the top card of your deck, a Village Green.
Play Village Green as Way of the Butterfly, returning it to the supply.
With Way of the Butterfly, gain a $5 gainer (Upgrade, Butcher, Displace), triggering Innovation.
Play the $5 gainer with Innovation, gaining the Village Green.
The Village Green is put in the discard pile.

This requries three cards less than the original (faulty) scenario.

Alternatively, instead of Innovation and the $5 gainer, play Sheepdog (or Falconer), using Way of the Mouse to play a gainer (like Workshop or many others). This requires two Ways though.
It's just like lose-track I mean stop-moving; the card not only has to be where it's expected to be, it also has to have stayed there.

17
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: August 28, 2021, 01:02:35 pm »
Is there any information you can give to the New Expansion? (Name, Nummer of cards, New plannde mechanics… evt?)
We now expect the expansion out in January. This is just due to when we could get it printed.

The usual terse description will come out at some point from RGG, and then someone will see it and post it. As always I leave these things up to the publisher.

18
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Minor note about new printings
« on: August 25, 2021, 11:02:06 am »
There are no plans to abandon the metal in the English printings.

19
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: August 16, 2021, 12:26:35 pm »
Will it still be this year, though? I think lots of people out there are very excited for the next expansion.
The future can foil your plans, but right now the card images have a 2021 date on them. Art is still not all in. The big question though is shipping. I have no further information there.

20
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: August 11, 2021, 12:00:17 pm »
Donald X., do they get your approval for finished/drafted art? Have you ever rejected a piece of artwork? What’s your role besides sending notes to the artist before they make anything?
These days I also get to see sketches, which sometimes I complain about (and they sketch again), and "final" art, which I rarely do (though I have).

I try to be friendly, to mostly let the artist draw whatever. The complaints tend to be like "people will complain that they can't tell that that's a woman so it must be a man and why aren't there more women, but it's not that we're asking for cleavage," and "they didn't have windows like that in medieval times." And sometimes the final art has a person that's supposed to be a woman but people decide must be a man and wow these guys suck for not having more women, and sometimes the final art has windows that they didn't have in medieval times.

21
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: August 09, 2021, 06:50:12 pm »
You've mentioned that you're hoping to get a set out in October-November. Other expansions released around then (Nocturne + Renaissance) were officially announced the first week of August. Can we expect to see an announcement for this mysterious next set sometime soon?
I'll know about the announcement at the same time as everyone else. It's not a carefully orchestrated thing, it's just kind of random.

22
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: August 09, 2021, 12:00:16 pm »
In hindsight, would you have given one of the Supply cards +buy (e.g. Gold)?
No. The intention is that not every game has each basic element.

23
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: August 08, 2021, 12:39:13 pm »
Why is the Supply the only "zone" in the game that's capitalized? And why is the trash not capitalized?
Possibly trash the-place should be capitalized. This is one of those things that just happened, it wasn't super thought-through.

Why is Exiling cards capitalized? It always looked weird to me that of all the verbs in the game (gain, draw, etc.), Exile was the only one that's capitalized.
It's just to try to make the cards as readable as possible. It was a question when making Renaissance and that's how it went. It's an expansion-specific word.

Why is it a Triumphal Arch and not just an Arch? And why is it a Defiled Shrine and not just a Shrine?
In the long run I haven't done enough adjectiving; the name space gets tight when you make so many expansions. Adjectives can also help with making it easier to remember what the cards do, with making the names more of a match for the functionality. And they're flavorful. So really it's the opposite; why so many non-adjectived nouns? But then it's nice to have terse names too.

In these particular cases, a Triumphal Arch is a thing, that was the concept, not just an arch. Defiled Shrine was the concept there too. I don't think a plain Shrine would involve buying a Curse.

Would you still put Enchantress/Archive in Empires, and Cargo Ship/Research in Renaissance? I feel like if I only had 2 awesome Duration cards that didn't require the set's mechanics, I would just save them for a future set, with more Duration cards? Kind of like how you said that Flag Bearer and Swashbuckler could have been saved for a future set, when you had more Artifacts that were worthwhile.
Originally all sets from Seaside on were going to have Duration cards; Fishing Village for example was from Prosperity. This didn't happen because of how things went down for Valerie with Seaside; she didn't like Duration cards, and spent a couple pages on the rules for them. My rulebook only spends a short paragraph on Durations, and I like them, and they are very popular with players. They open up card possibilities significantly, especially for Attacks. So, I'm happy having a couple nice ones in an expansion like that, and always have been. And it's no trouble, it's easy to make them.

Artifacts meanwhile were a new thing that was hard to get right. Waiting might have let me get to five good cards to do for them.

What are your thoughts on the recent Command-like cards? Obviously the original versions of Inheritance and Band of Misfits were a mistake, but I think Necromancer, Captain, and Mouse may be the perfect example of "it's nowhere near simple, but it fits the text box so it still gets printed."
I'm not quite sure what you mean. "It fits the text box" isn't the only criteria for how complex a card is, or what justifies making it to print.

Sometimes fun cards make it out because of how fun they are, despite issues. There are some examples! Band of Misfits left Dark Ages due to its rules issues; it came back because people missed it. People liked it when it came out, and often it's not tricky. The original version was a mistake, but I'm not sure that the tweaked version is. It's not the kind of thing I want to do lots of, but it's fun.

Way of the Mouse had the significant issue of, all the other Ways are intentionally worse than whatever non-awful $2 you might buy, but this isn't. It was fun. There wasn't a fix. There it is, spicing up games.

What cards were you surprised to learn were controversial and frequently-banned (Invest is a good example)? There are cards where you knew beforehand that some people would hate (like Knights), so I'm curious about the opposite.
Quote from: The Secret History of Dark Ages
[Knights] are for the people who like this kind of thing, and well some people adore them, slower game and all. Some people are all, my cards, my precious cards, and well there are plenty of other cards in the set for those guys.
In the early days I didn't realize that people would hate "it attacks but doesn't make resources" (Saboteur and Sea Hag, both of which have other problems too). I didn't anticipate hate for Black Market; it's super-fun.

Is Invest so controversial? I think there are just a few discord people who speak out against it. Here's where it lies in the banned lists:

 58 [OVERLORD]
 61 [VINEYARD, WEREWOLF, CAPTAIN]
 62 [SALT_THE_EARTH, INVEST]
 63 [ANNEX]
 65 [CONSPIRATOR]

It's that card people hate, like they hate Vineyard and Conspirator.

As it happens it's also on 62 Liked lists (also this data is several months old).

24
Dominion Articles / Re: Dominion is getting worse with each expansion
« on: August 02, 2021, 11:52:05 am »
So how can you stop the inflation of bad kingdoms? One solution available is "don't do full random". Another is "don't play with too many expansions at once". These are fine for IRL groups, but in the competitive online scene they get problematic. Another approach is similar to what I mentioned earlier: Increase the size of the kingdom. This was done, in a way, with the addition of sideways cards, but has not been done since. It would probably not be a good idea to add another card type just to increase size, but you could simply add more kingdom cards.

In the current setting, even just adding an 11th card would drop the likelihood of a no-Buy-kingdom from 23.6% to 20.4% - below the chance of that happening in a base-only game.

My proposal would be something like "add an extra Kingdom card for every 10 expansions that you play with". That would help counteract the chances of dud kingdoms increasing.
The fact that pure random would mean a lower % of "important stuff that I nevertheless don't want in every game" as time went on was not invisible. My actual solution was to slightly up the % of these things in the later expansions. The landscapes also help.

25
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: July 26, 2021, 12:36:48 pm »
I imagine the use of "2+" on Devil's Workshop was just to fit the text at the largest font size, but have you considered using it it on other cards as well (e.g. "each other player with 5+ cards in hand")?
I've done it in the prototype. On published cards we are as boringly clear as possible.

Why isn't Experiment just "+3 Cards, +1 Action, return to the supply?" Why does it need the bottom part at all? Similar question with Port. "It works with Academy and Adventures tokens" doesn't seem like a good enough reason.
This possibility did not escape me. It was more interesting to have it be two cards. If I hadn't had the wording I did it might have just ended up as a single "+3 Cards" Horse, but I did have the wording, and got to do the more interesting card. Having them be two cards is different lots of ways.

Do you think Capitalism should say "non-Duration?" You'd fix a bunch of "removing Treasure-Durations from play" problems with Counterfeit/Mint/Mandarin/etc., if Capitalism just didn't let it happen at all.
These seem like pretty obscure problems, whereas Capitalism would be failing to spice up Durations with +$ all the time.

Do you still think Chariot Race should be in Empires? Having a card that compares costs, in an expansion with debt cards, seems like asking for trouble among casual players. (Kind of like how in the D&D Mtg expansion, people weren't able to tell the difference between flavor and ability words, and Mark Rosewater said that it was a lesson in having both be in the same set.)
I think they did blow it on pack tactics, and I am still fine with Chariot Race in Empires, and don't find these things especially comparable.

Cards that look at cost are common. People were going to have to know that you can't gain Engineer with e.g. Engineer, and so on.

Do you feel like recent cards have gotten too...generous I guess? For example, Imps and Will-o'-Wisps have challenges around them to be a Lab, and then Horses just work in every deck (and the fact that Horses are temporary doesn't mean much when you're playing multiple Paddocks every turn).
You aren't comparing anything meaningful there. You can't buy those cards. The question is all about how "generous" Devil's Workshop and Hostelry and so on are.

As always Dominion has nothing to gain from "power creep," no incentive towards it; thus there is no trend towards it, beyond the "hey where are all the utter duds" trend.

And is Hunting Lodge too good? I don't like how it's optional, when compared to Scholar and Cursed Village. It even made it onto your list of "most likely to be too strong" when you finalized Menagerie.
At this point, this is a question for someone else. You can chat with top players on the discord and see if they think Hunting Lodge is too good. I don't keep testing the cards once they're out; I'm testing other cards or other games. Hunting Lodge will show up sometimes but you know, new insights will be slow there. Whereas there is tons of data from people playing online.

About the font-size question I asked like a month ago, a convenient example about me not fully on-board with your policy is Gamble. The use of "otherwise" instead of a better wording seems like a mistake. We'll most likely disagree here, but I would have preferred slightly longer and shrunken text instead of the current wording. There are certainly times where I think being as concise as possible is correct (like Fleet), but not for Gamble.
There is the policy of not making new cards that require a small font; that doesn't seem at issue here. Then there's, trying to make cards that are borderline fit by giving them not-quite-perfect wordings. That may be a mistake. But the fix isn't necessarily to use the small font; usually it would be, to not do that card.

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