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Messages - Donald X.

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1
Personally, I think it would save a lot of card space if Possession just said "Possess the player to your left" and then have the rulebook explain what "possess" means.
I always imagine "continued on next card."

The move with things as complex as Possession is of course to *not do them.*

2
I prefer having a +1 to "take a coin token."

I agree, but the wording change didn't happen for Pirate Ship and Trade Route. Is that because they have quite a different effect from "+# Coffers", or because the idea of changing the phrase came after these revised versions were printed?

With only two remaining "take a coin token" cards, with different effects from "Coffers", I feel that it's fitting these weren't rephrased. Once they're placed on their respective cards, they kind of do the same thing, so I like that you kept the same phrase for these two even in "2nd edition".
They can't say "+1 Coffers" because that's not what they do. They don't each have a unique + because you want to use a term more often before you make people learn it. Well in rare cases you might make people learn a term for one thing, when you can't explain the thing on the card, but that wasn't an issue here.

3
I do think that there's some design space for a "top of your deck remodeler" i.e. something that trashes a card from the top of the deck and then also gains something to the top of the deck. I'm still somewhat disappointed that Zombie Mason doesn't top deck the gain; it would feel a lot more interesting if it did.
Multiple cards have tried that; for a while Dark Ages had one called Rebuild (Remodel one of top 3, putting the gained card on top). I thought it was fine, but it was a dud, players didn't like it. I think the key thing is, they didn't want to trash random cards from their deck, and getting to get something better and still have it on top was somehow not enough. But Zombie Mason got through because the card has other options too, and rewards you for getting cards into the trash.

4
General Discussion / Re: Random Stuff Part IV
« on: August 14, 2018, 06:36:34 pm »
But you can just iterate through the cases. However counterintuitive it is, there's your answer. Why wasn't that enough for Erdos? It's a sad comment on how people work.

5
Can I ask a different question then?
You should have asked if you could ask this.

What was the reason behind making it Coffers instead of leaving it the way it was? I understand making it consistent with Renaissance, but why not just make Renaissance consistent with the existing cards?
Without considering Renaissance, I prefer having a +1 to "take a coin token." It's cleaner, it gets to be centered and bold. You already need to know what the token means so it's not a greater rules burden. It avoids confusion with Pirate Ship and Trade Route.

As LF notes, we're not talking about Renaissance yet. There's the flavor blurb and set contents blurb and cover, and at the end of September there will be previews.

6
General Discussion / Re: Random Stuff Part IV
« on: August 14, 2018, 03:12:40 pm »
Paul Erdos refused to believe the solution to the Monty Hall problem.

7
We knew that players would feel cheated if there were new cards in Dominion and Intrigue and you had to buy the new edition to get them - buying the whole box when you just wanted 7 cards. That was not an option for us. So, there were update packs. We could actually do that.

We felt like players would not feel cheated that layout was improved on every card and you had to buy the whole box to get those changes. The set of changes is the size of the box. The cards that say "Coffers" in Guilds / Cornucopia aren't the only cards that got reworded non-functionally.

If we had felt that e.g. the Masquerade change couldn't be made without providing that to players separately somehow... we would have sucked it up and not made those changes. We absolutely can't have a product that's things like, Moneylender but it says "you may." It's a garbage product. It would suck to not be able to add that "you may"; it adds up to a classic, man it sucks that we can't have nice things.

We have the nice thing and I mean feel free to tell me how much I shouldn't get to have it. I nevertheless think that what we will suck up in this case is people complaining, that there will still never be this product of just certain cards reworded. If enough people complain then in the future we will be barred from making those improvements, what a sad world that will be.

8
Doesn't that mean there will have to be a second set of Coffers mats in Renaissance for people who don't have Guilds?

On the plus side, if I understood correctly, the need for a second set of Tavern mats was a reason not to include Reserve cards in any future expansions. This opens up the hope for me we might see that much-loved feature again some day. (-8
Renaissance has mats.

Needing a Tavern mat is a reason to not have one Reserve card in a set - are we really including a mat for one card (like we did in Seaside and Prosperity). It's not an obstacle for having 10 new Reserve cards. Which is not to say that that will ever happen - I'd need to be making a set, and I'd need to want Reserve cards in it and have a bunch worth doing.

9
Indeed.. to me, the renaming of Coffers in fact strongly indicates that we WILL see "+1 Coffers" in the new set.
I have already said on reddit that Guilds was changed to match Renaissance there.

10
Any chance on seeing an update pack for Guilds with the "coin tokens" -> "coffers" cards?  If the new expansion is going to call them coffers, we are going to have cards with both terms in the box unless we rebuy Guilds + Cornucopia
I see what you're saying. We haven't considered it at all. There would need to be sufficient demand, which seems unlikely for rewordings with no new cards or art.

11
Dominion General Discussion / Re: A Dominion Chronology
« on: August 08, 2018, 03:40:57 pm »
I'm also noticing the main gaping holes in European history left are the Reformation and the Crusades.  While both have those have a fair amount of war involved, which the Germans might not like, it might be cool to have an African or Middle Eastern themed set, or maybe a far-north Viking-ish set.

The German edition of the game is not sold by Hans im Glück anymore, so I don't think that's a problem. I do think that both Reformation and Crusades have too many of their unique themes based on religion, though.

I notice that all religious objects and characters are relatively nonspecific. There's no cross in Chapel, and Bishop looks like a fantasy character. Also we have a Torturer and a Tormentor, but no Inquisitor. It gives me the impression that those themes are intentionally kept very mild.
Religion and Vikings both made my list of potential themes a while back, but yes religion doesn't seem great in large doses. And Vikings, Tom Lehmann picked out names for Adventures cards for a Scandinavian theme, and the great names just weren't there. I mean you can tack on "snowy" to something but uh. Like, part of why Empires was Roman was that there were just so many appropriate potential card names that were clearly Roman.

I don't know where Altenburger stands on war flavor, but I don't think they'd dissuade us from doing Crusades. A problem though is that it suggests an attack-heavy set that I think most players don't want.

12
One question: When the sneak peeks are released will it work similarly to the Nocturne previews for Dominion Online when we were allowed to play with just the sneak peeked cards for that day in the days leading up to the full release?
The plan is that, as with Nocturne, each day of previews you can play with the newly previewed cards plus the previously previewed cards, and then just all of them over the weekend after the previews.

13
The first print run in English will come with a download code for getting a year of this or a similar-sized expansion free on Shuffle IT.

There have been similar promotions between Stef and Altenburger for German versions of the main set and maybe something else.

14
Dominion General Discussion / Re: A Dominion Chronology
« on: August 07, 2018, 02:56:39 pm »
I would put Nocturne before Dark Ages. Nocturne represents a superstitious era of bards and druids that was largely eradicated by the fuedal era of Dark Ages.
That sounds reasonable.

15
Dominion General Discussion / Re: A Dominion Chronology
« on: August 07, 2018, 02:55:25 pm »
Prosperity has Colony. Where are these colonies exactly? It seems to me that they are post-Renaissance (well not after the entire Renaissance, but you know, after the early Renaissance). I would bump Seaside closer to the Renaissance too.

On the other end I would put Adventures next to Nocturne.

16
We're expecting it to be out in early October; previews probably the last week of September.

17
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Question- What is an Engine
« on: July 27, 2018, 03:18:11 am »
And yes, this means golden decks are engines. I don't see anything wrong with this. The whole point of engines is consistency, and a golden deck is about as consistent as you can get.
The point of engines is snowballing. Golden decks are static.

A snowball phase followed by a static one is characteristic of every deck, due to the nature of the game. The static phase comes sooner in money and golden decks, but you have to snowball up to both of these first; in golden decks the snowballing is necessary to get all the needed components before trashing all the others.
If you call golden decks "engines," for whatever reason that makes sense to you, you will find that you are not communicating clearly with other people who use the word "engine."

18
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Question- What is an Engine
« on: July 26, 2018, 08:22:18 pm »
And yes, this means golden decks are engines. I don't see anything wrong with this. The whole point of engines is consistency, and a golden deck is about as consistent as you can get.
The point of engines is snowballing. Golden decks are static.

19
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Question- What is an Engine
« on: July 26, 2018, 03:12:39 pm »
Imagine a deck that uses all sorts of actions in order to draw and play your entire deck every turn. It contains 5 Universities, so you can use this deck to gain all the actions you need and increase consistency while draining piles. But it has no payload. Either it has no +buy, or it has no source of coin, either one.

I just don't see why that deck would not be an engine deck. It plays exactly like an engine. It's just a really bad engine; because you have failed to give yourself a way to actually win the game by getting points.
University is like +$5 +1 Buy with limitations.

20
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Question- What is an Engine
« on: July 26, 2018, 03:10:48 pm »
For games in general, an "engine" is "do more." You increase how much you can do with your turns (yes or how many turns you get). When engine games started to be a thing, they were also called "snowball" games, after snowballs getting bigger as they roll down hills. Your engine snowballs; it does more and more.

In Dominion there are three basic ways you can do more. By default you get 5 cards a turn, can play one Action, and can gain one card. You do more by drawing more cards, playing more Actions (not necessarily terminals), and gaining more cards. Gaining more cards includes having the economy to pay for them (or using Workshops, which provide their own economy). So getting better economy is part of this too.

When people talk about engines in Dominion - and of course all that's useful is what people use the term to mean, not what any one person would like it to mean - they tend to mean decks that include all three of these elements. You have to be drawing more cards, playing more than one Action, and gaining more than one card.

I don't think there are people who seriously talk about a deck that has no draw or can only play one Action a turn as an engine. If you can only gain one card, well that can be good, drawing your deck with Labs say, and the Labs do snowball, to a point. But it's limited, even if the Labs never run out. To some people it may count but I think to most it does not; it's "drawing your deck" not "an engine."

It's all a loop feeding itself. Drawing, playing, and gaining more cards all help you draw, play, and gain more cards.

A weak engine is still an "engine." You would like to draw your whole deck every turn, play everything, and gain lots of cards; but just getting part of the way there is still an engine.

21
Rules Questions / Re: Deluded + Black Market
« on: July 23, 2018, 01:48:53 pm »
I am aware of this, but still maintain that it would be way less confusing as: "While you have this, you may not buy action cards. Return this during your Clean-Up phase." But it can't be that because you might be too happy getting it with Cursed Village (I assume; though other Hexes do nothing with Cursed Village as well, so it doesn't seem terrible).
It's just a classic case of pursuing the functionality I wanted rather than simplicity.

22
You can receive Swamp's Gift several times per turn, but Field's Gift is kept until clean-up in front of you. So it would miss a shuffle of the Boons pile.

I guess the point there is to remind you that you get the +?
Yes.

23
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: July 21, 2018, 02:19:34 pm »
Do you playtest digitally or physically?

What art do you use on cards when playtesting?
Both; in the early days I had a program I wrote, then Doug Z. made isotropic.

I google up images, all of them entirely sensible. Mostly the same images were used in isotropic, so many people are familiar with the pre-Dark Ages ones.

The physical version of Nocturne was not playtested on dominion.games, it was already done; all that was playtested there was the online functionality.

24
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: July 21, 2018, 03:14:55 am »
I do not want to see them. You can share them with other people in the variants forum J Reggie linked to, or on reddit or BGG or elsewhere. I specifically do not go to the variants forum, and all fan-made cards posted on dominionstrategy should go there and nowhere else.

So this response doesn't sound harsh and villain-spawning like Mr. Incredible's, I'll offer this additional perspective that might help. In any creative endeavor, it can be hard to trace where an idea truly originated. If Donald X. read the variants forum, there would always be a question of whether some future canon Dominion card was inspired by something he read there without him realizing it. I'm sure you'd still be honored if that happened even without any actual recognition, but others might be disappointed that he forgot. In the extreme, someone could accuse Donald X. of ripping off their variant with his new expansion, which is not the kind of publicity he wants.

I think we all have to remember that we have different roles here. For Donald X., as accessible as he is to us here, Dominion is not just something he does for fun; it's a job for him. Like anyone, he wants to do his job well, and that involves being responsible about the origins of ideas that he will profit off of. Hence the firewall keeping the variants and fan cards in that subforum, which allows him to roam freely about these discussion boards and participate in our discussions about his game.
And I mean, I've had the same experience from the other side. Years ago I made a homemade Netrunner expansion. Then FFG got the rights to Netrunner and started making new products. I was the Dominion guy, and FFG was publishing one of my games too. I said hey, I have a Netrunner expansion. They weren't interested in seeing it. They had their own Netrunner cards to make.

25
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: July 20, 2018, 04:23:12 pm »
Well I figured you would like to make them up on your own. Would you like to see a few of my favorites from snowline then? I might spark your creativity for a new expansion. In fact I haven’t really mentioned too much to anyone on the forum about snowline. Only my close friends. So you would be the one of the first on the forum.
I do not want to see them. You can share them with other people in the variants forum J Reggie linked to, or on reddit or BGG or elsewhere. I specifically do not go to the variants forum, and all fan-made cards posted on dominionstrategy should go there and nowhere else.

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