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Messages - Donald X.

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Other Games / Re: Nintendo Switch
« on: June 13, 2019, 10:32:53 am »
Anyway, the list of games we'll be buying right away:
Since you're playing with someone else, the other game I recommend is Overcooked 2.

in a four-player game

It's probably a good idea for the game to be shorter.
Man you're not even trying.

When Silver is the best thing to buy at $4 repeatedly, it's probably a good idea for the game to be shorter.
What about if casual players in a four-player game want 10 Silvers between them? Still yes because hey it's a four-player game, why doesn't it already have a two-pile end condition?

I have actually seen the game end on piles when one of them was Patron when people were just automatically buying it because it was Silver for $4. Way back when I actually saw the game end on piles with other Silvers for $4. I'm happy to be the disagreeable guy who tries to stop the game from being too short.

Patron causes the problem that I avoided for many years by not making Silver-with-a-bonus at $4, though it dodges being strictly better than $4 Silver on paper because you need to play it once to have a villager to not draw it dead. I decided to live with it for that one card and in practice it doesn't come up so often, though I have seen it.

You've seen it, but have you seen it be a problem?
Yes, that's what I meant. Mostly there isn't a problem. The problem is the pile being emptied when people didn't care about Patron, just bought it because it was Silver for $4. It's actually a problem, it makes the game shorter than would be ideal, like if the rule were that only two piles needed to be empty. And I've seen it. But mostly when the pile empties, people did care.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: June 03, 2019, 01:40:39 pm »
Are there any outtakes which got to the table for playtesting, but which you wonder why you ever considered them in retrospect?
If you don't playtest things that look crazy, you'll never have published cards that look crazy. Still I've certainly playtested cards that had no real chance of working out. I don't shy away from mentioning them in the secret histories.

My brother's girlfriend noticed that some Dominion expansions have a recommended age of 13+, while others have 14+. Does anybody have any idea why?
Originally they were all 8+, in 2006.

Mattel managed to have toys made in Chain with lead paint, in 2007. A bipartisan effort ensured that kids would never have to fear that their books or card games or other products that had never had lead ever would somehow have lead; if you want to say younger than 13+, they all need lead testing, on each print run. This is prohibitively costly (unless you get your lead testing done in... China, like Mattel does). So, Dominion switched to saying 13+.

One printer (ELM) felt that actually the requirement was 14+. That was their reading of whatever. So the copies made by them say 14+, and other copies say 13+. We don't use them anymore for some reason, so eventually they will all say 13+.

Dominion FAQ / Re: Treasure Cards - When You Play This
« on: May 29, 2019, 04:55:46 pm »
Out of interest, did you contemplate dropping that wording for the new printing?
I've considered it, but if I do it, there will forever be people who have them both ways. They get Prosperity with "when you play" but Empires without it, you know. I don't know, maybe that's fine, but I decided against it when we just slightly tweaked Prosperity's layout.

Dominion FAQ / Re: Treasure Cards - When You Play This
« on: May 29, 2019, 06:16:52 am »
Why do Treasure cards with special effects always say "when you play this?" Action and Night cards don't say that, so isn't that kind of implied?
Back when it seemed important for making it clear how the cards work. It would be great if they didn't say that; it eats up space on a bunch of Treasures.

The Facebook-page does not mention any "whacky" effects. Where did the OP get that from?

(I'm German.)
It used to! They fixed it after I complained to Jay and he complained to them.

I did not possibly describe its effect as "whacky" or wacky, or in fact in any way whatsoever to the people writing that.

Other Games / Re: Mario Maker
« on: May 23, 2019, 06:12:26 pm »
I also didn't really understand the Galaxy idea that he was talking about... turning 3D world into a 2D game is one thing, but Galaxy as a whole relies so heavily on the fact that it is a 3D game. Everything special about it is due to it's 3D-ness. I can't even imagine what a flattened 2D version would be like, other than just the same as any other style except with up vs down gravity in some places.
Yeah I was just watching some Galaxy videos, and it's like, if you aren't making whole little round worlds, what's the point? Super Mario 3-D World is secretly a very 2-D game - you walk along a 2-D area (but can jump), get to a wall, that's a 2-D area where you're climbing (but could jump out and fall), on top it's another flat area, and so on - just endless 2-D experiences. Galaxy does have plenty of 2-D areas, but we're getting that experience from 3-D World.

Other Games / Re: Mario Maker
« on: May 23, 2019, 05:49:30 pm »
I feel like Mario 2 is actually pretty likely... based mostly off of the fact that the screen shot listing the styles showed Mario 3D world in its own section called "Extra Styles" (plural), with an obvious hole where another style would be. I've heard some different speculation on what that 6th style could be (Mario 2, Mario Land, Mario Galaxy), and it just seems like Mario 2 is most likely. Before the introduction of 3D world, I would have said "no way would that happen", due to Mario 2 being too different from the rest. But now they've shown 3D world being it's own separate thing pretty much, so Mario 2 seems more likely.
Someone pointed out that, if your plan was to do Mario 2 and Mario 3-D World, well, wouldn't you show off Mario 2 first? Mario 3-D World is more unexpected and exciting. But, could still be Mario 2.

Galaxy seems next most likely. Another possibility is, they could announce a new Mario game, and then have that style.

The on/off switches and new win conditions are pretty exciting. And the terrain themes and 3-D world theme and night. I suspect I won't get into multiplayer, though for some people that has to be the most amazing feature. It will be great just to have a ton of new stuff too.

I am betting they are saving a reveal of a new power-up for each game type. This is of course based on, they have a hammer in 3-D world, but didn't show it in the general release of the video; you get a glimpse of it in the Japanese version. For Mario they'd have to make one up, or maybe use one from the Gameboy / DS games. Super Mario World just has the balloon but that would be nice to have. And then you have options for the others, but ice flower stands out.

Let's Discuss ... / Re: Let's Discuss Base Set Cards: Mine
« on: May 09, 2019, 04:18:14 pm »
Why couldn't a second edition card be strictly better than a replaced one? They're not supposed to be used together in one game, so there's no argument that the worse card would be useless in a game with both.
Absolutely the only problem with strictly better cards is that some people hate them - hate that they exist. I don't want to generate that hate and don't need to.

I don't know how much those people would have hated e.g. an Adventurer replacement that's strictly better than Adventurer, given that the card was officially being retired. There was no need to risk it and I didn't.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Black Market Deck Setup Idea
« on: May 08, 2019, 04:27:57 pm »
The way I have always done it: instead of a different-backed randomizer deck, I use one card from each pile as the randomizer (this was to avoid needing to print an 11th copy of everything). You deal the randomizers out onto the table and then add the other 9 from the box; at the end of the game you return one copy to the randomizer deck. So anyway. Then for Black Market, you can just use the randomizer deck; no setup at all.

Rules Questions / Re: Potion/Debt and cost-reduction
« on: May 02, 2019, 05:42:40 pm »
I asked this a while ago and the answer was basically that I was poking at the rules for poking at the rules' sake.
- That answer is also accurate.
- It was how you said it.
- It was what you didn't say.
- hhelibebcnofnena just caught me in a good mood - I'd just found a quarter in the sofa.
- And now look at you, with nearly 5000 posts of your own. And this is the thanks I get.

Rules Questions / Re: Fleet extra turns
« on: May 01, 2019, 06:05:22 pm »
The key point is that the game is *not* over for every player that didn't buy Fleet during the round of Fleet turns. You get to discard a Tunnel for an opponent's Milita, gain a Gold with it and increase you score due to Palace. You can get your Duchy swindled into a Harvest, loosing points. Why should Possession not affect you?

The only thing you don't get is the "extra turn" granted by Fleet.
Well put.

The cards can't have computer code on them; that game is unplayable. They try to do well enough for most situations, and there's a rulebook that tries to cover other questions that will come up.

Maybe there was a better wording for Fleet; we put work into it and that was the best we had. I could have not done Fleet; it's the 12th expansion, I need to still do new things that excite people, Fleet seemed worth doing.

Rules Questions / Re: Potion/Debt and cost-reduction
« on: May 01, 2019, 05:51:49 pm »
If I were to get a Bridge in play (or any other cost reduction card), then the clause which says 'but not less than $0' to prevent cards costing negative amounts wouldn't apply to Potion or Debt costing cards (Vineyard, for example), because $-1 and Potion or $-1 and Debt are not "less than $0" or "more than $0". I would assume that there is an implicit clause preventing cards from costing negative coins and Potion (or Debt). However, strictly according to the wording, this is not the case.

Again, I am 99.99% sure that any official ruling will say that Vineyards still cost $0P, Engineers still cost $0 + 4 Debt, etc. but I haven't found one.
Bridge etc. will not lower the coin amount below $0, even on cards that also cost potions/debt.

Rules Questions / Re: Fleet extra turns
« on: April 30, 2019, 05:14:30 am »
Wow. That baffles me. I have had thought, that a player without Fleet would do nothing (except any "each player" or "each other player" or "the player to your left" effects). But when they still do an extra turn contrary to Fleet wording "turns just for players with this" then what with Outpost or Mission triggered in that possessed turn?
I don't quite understand what you're saying, but will try to re-explain it.

Normally, if you play Outpost, you get an extra turn. If the game ends, you don't get that extra turn. Outpost doesn't stop the game from ending; it only gives you an extra turn if the game is still going.

Fleet actually stops the game from ending. So Outpost turns get to happen. Same with Possession and Mission.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Are promos worth it?
« on: April 17, 2019, 07:58:13 pm »
The two new promos are expected in August.

Are they worth it?
One of them shows RTT in a hat. So I mean. Obviously.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Are promos worth it?
« on: April 17, 2019, 04:05:59 pm »
Hey here's a thread with "promos" in the title.

The two new promos are expected in August.

Dominion Articles / Re: Fool
« on: April 11, 2019, 03:47:20 pm »
If I were remaking Fool today, I would make it a one-shot.
Which I did try, and which you couldn't live with at the time, let the record show.

There's also a Blessed-Village-style when-gain one-shot; still reusable but it's harder. But yes I would not risk it today.

Dominion Online at Shuffle iT / Re: Overlord + Walled Village
« on: April 10, 2019, 02:06:17 am »
I played Overlord as Walled Village (and one other card)
At the end of the turn I was not given the option to put it back in my hand.
Is that right?

Walled Village under the bar happens in the clean up phase. Should Overlord still be Walled Village during clean up? It hasn't left play yet has it? Or do all cards leave play at the start of clean up?
It's a known bug.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: April 09, 2019, 03:10:09 pm »
A data point that might be interesting, and is hopefully really easy to answer: how big was the corresponding "finished" file for Renaissance?
There is no such file. The main file is 8K. Half of that is a terse list of the cards, one line per card; a fourth is cards by category; a fourth is final work being done - bad ideas for projects and wordings for Lantern. The list bit would have been copied to the other file but there was no point.

Okay I made a file of just the final card texts (but the full form, with exact wordings and card types and stuff), and that's 7K.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: April 09, 2019, 05:36:23 am »
Out of the card ideas you come up with, approximately what percentage of them never make it into the game? How many don't even make it to the table for play-testing? Did this percentage increase over the years because of less idea space? Did it decrease because you got more skilled at designing? Or did these cancel out and it stayed the same? You mention neglected ideas a lot in your secret histories, so I was curious.
The junk file for Renaissance is 165K, if that does anything for you. It's ideas removed from the main file because I don't want to look at them anymore (the main file at any moment has the current cards and then whatever I'm working on). Some of it is lists of one-line ideas, some of it is fully-worded cards with stats. That is as close as I am going to get to approximating these things for you. "A lot" of ideas never make it; "a lot" don't get playtested. There is a giant file of ancient ideas, that I've picked through repeatedly so that it's all bad now. But I'm pickier now and that requires generating more ideas, and at first I could just do the low-hanging fruit and did, so it's harder to get somewhere now and so more work goes into it. So overall the %'s have gone up.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: April 09, 2019, 05:12:47 am »
Special action ordering (i.e. "Interface" in Infiltration): In Infiltration, many of these are one-shots and some grab loot or change shared state. How do you resolve ordering here?
Interface was Special. Within one room, two people playing Special do it at the same time. For people doing the same action in different places, start with the first room and work your way in. Some rooms in Factory Job have things like "if you're the only person playing Special here..." Obv. they could drop that since they added a turn order.

Looting uneven splits: In Infiltration this is done per DF token, so there can be uneven splits (e.g. 3 players loot with 4 tokens or 5 players loot with 3 tokens). How did you resolve this in the prototype? Did you just split the amount by making change? Or were there tokens there as well? Or some kind of catch-up mechanic where player in last gets dibs?
The numbers are way bigger and the remainder stays in the room. If the room has $80 and 2 items and 3 people loot there then each gets $26 and no items and the room is left with $2 and the 2 items. There is no catch-up mechanic; I vastly prefer "make sure it's fun to lose."

Loot to DF token conversion: You said the max looting was $100 per round and round in the prototype. What would be the closest amount this would correspond to in Infiltration? (I'm guessing 4 DF tokens based on the Extract card, making each DF token about $25 in prototype terms.)
The room with the most $ has like $400. I'm not looking through the Infiltration cards to see what they did; man it's not a game I play and you are asking a lot of questions.

Loot randomization: In Infiltration, the DF tokens are worth random amounts from 1-3. Based on your description, it seems this might not have been the case in the prototype. Was there some kind of loot randomization process?
There is no random token thing in Factory Job and $ is public. A room will have e.g. $150 and a safe with $100.

2 loot lock types seem a bit redundant (Lab Workers and Tech Locks in Infiltration): Was there a corresponding mechanic in the prototype? If so, why two types?
Factory Job has locks, boxes, and people, three types. It's just how I represented the kinds of objects you were breaking.

Random NPCs: Were each of them tied to a room like in Infiltration or were they randomized as well, as suggested in Infiltration's Scattered NPCs variant?
They are all tied to rooms. The rooms are randomized; that's all the randomization you need there.

Concerning the end-game: Did you ever have or consider other methods of luck pushing near the end, such as: a faster method of retreat at a cost (e.g. dropping loot to be able to retreat 2 rooms at a time); or losing loot per round that players are still in the factory after reaching 99 proximity?
I made Factory Job in 2003. So "did I ever consider" is not a question I can really answer. However I bet not; the cops showing up and catching everyone still in the building was the premise from the start. If you want to get out faster, turn back earlier or don't go in as far.

Game end timing: Did the prototype end at 99 proximity immediately like in Infiltration or at the end of the round reaching 99?
The game ends when the cops hit 100, even mid-turn. I guess they wanted a 2-digit number or something; mine goes to 100.

Specialist variant: Infiltration lists a Specialist variant where you start the game with 2 specific items per player character (and randomize/draft the other two) to make them seem differentiated. Did the prototype have such a mechanic?
No, just item drafting.

Secret room / basement: In Infiltration there's one secret room from three special cards. Was the entrance to the basement via up to two specific rooms like in Infiltration? Seems like that wouldn't work as well if the card drawn for the basement was one of the go-to-basement rooms. What was the design goal here?
The design goal was the joy of having a different branch you could take, even though the game depended on a linear map. I made two rooms that got you to the basement; both get you there with Special, and then Move In exits to the one room and Move Out to the other, hence two such rooms. The basement could be any card at all, the joy of the basement being any card at all. Many games there would be no way to the basement, and some games only one, but if you had two, yeeha, you could take that other route. A rare thing. The joy of rare things. Yes the basement could be one of the ways to get to the basement. That doesn't break anything and we would probably all get a laugh out of it.

Room differences: How much were the rooms changed from the prototype? Were they just sorted into the three decks? Or were there massive changes?
This question is beyond the scope. I'd have to find a box and paw through it to know what they had; I don't play that game, I play Factory Job. One thing I remember is, Factory Job had one room with computers, and they used them in more places. Factory Job had two identical security guards and I think they changed one of them.

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