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The masses have cried out for a Kingdom Design Challenge, and who are we to deny the masses!

DominionStrategy.com and f.DS are proud to announce the 2014 Kingdom Design Challenge, the 3rd iteration to date, following the 2011 and 2012 contests.

The contest rules and entry form can be found below. All rules are subject to change by contest organizers as necessary. Feel free to discuss the contest or ask for clarifications on any rules!

1. Starting today (February 4) we will accept Kingdom submissions. Submissions close March 22, 2014, though we reserve the right to adjust that date as necessary to align with the GokoDom tournament. Information about your submission might be made public after the conclusion of the competition.
2. Kingdom is defined as a set of 10 Dominion cards to be used in a game of the Grand Final. Beyond the following conditions, your Kingdom is no other constraint.
  • If your setup includes Young Witch, please choose a Bane card.
  • Please also specify whether Colonies / Platinum or Shelters are included. If your kingdom includes Colonies / Platinum then your Kingdom should include at least one Prosperity Kingdom card. If your kingdom includes Shelters then it should include at least one Dark Ages Kingdom card.
  • Your kingdom may have any number of Alchemy cards.

3. Kingdoms may include any published Dominion card including the Promotional Cards and the recently released Guilds expansion. Submissions with fan-made cards will automatically be rejected. Please ensure that you have spelled your submissions correctly and that you are not confusing two separate Kingdom cards.
4. Kingdoms can be submitted at the form located here or below. We require entrants to be registered on the forum. Submissions from unregistered entrants will not be considered. If you participate, please attempt to access your account regularly or edit your your account settings to forward messages to your email address. We need a reliable way to contact you with any questions or issues that may arise.
5. Each entrant may submit up to 10 kingdoms. If you submit more than 10 kingdoms then only the first 10 kingdoms will be considered. Only submit your best!
6. We will select at least seven Kingdoms which are expected to be used for the GokoDom III Finals. Due to potential Goko card ownership issues with the finalists we can't guarantee that all finalist Kingdoms will be played during the finals. However, if a kingdom is not used for the finals it will still be on the final ballot for community voting. We will not announce the Kingdoms until the final begins.
7. After the final, voters will be able to vote for their favorite of the seven (or more) Kingdoms. That poll will close one week from the end of the Grand Final; at that point, whoever submitted the winning Kingdom will also receive a physical copy of any Dominion expansion.
8. You may submit Kingdoms with any intent, and the voters can select whichever Kingdom they like for any reason. That being said, in selecting the final Kingdoms, judges will look for Kingdoms that can promote future discussion. The ideal Kingdom will encourage diverse strategies and tactics, have no clear dominant approach, and emphasize skill over luck. The finalists from the previous KDC can be found here.


2
2012 / Best Game: Round 2 Voting and Round 3 Nominations
« on: December 17, 2012, 09:04:17 pm »
a lot of drama in our Round 2 nominations, as 3 of the games ended up deciding the series. we've got comebacks and divergent strategies with just a hint of absurdity. get your votes in!

 Round 2 Nomination Info
Game 1: ycz6 vs yaron, Game 3/7 - 10 Scrying Pools vs. 10 Fool's Gold
Game 2: DWetzel vs. czechvarmander, Game 5/7 - 2 point win, IW/Silk Road vs Embassy/Monument/BM. turn 6 platinum...for the IW player!
Game 3: julie vs. michaeljb, Game 8/8 - 1 Point Win in the deciding match of an upset, all victory cards purchased.
Game 4: Eevee vs. Young Nick, Game 6/6 - King's Court and some other power cards show up to make the final game crazy.
Game 5: Destierro vs. Hive Mind Emulator, Game 4/6 - 22 Point comeback without +Buy
Game 6: jonts26 vs. Cuzz, Game 6/6 - Down 21 points, jonts26 trashes a Colony to fuel a comeback to win the game and series.

get your nominations in for Round 3!

3
2012 / Chapel Division: Bracket and Results
« on: December 02, 2012, 08:44:43 pm »
Results for the Chapel Division bracket are to be posted in this thread.

For each series post the overall winner and the number of games each player won. Please try to grab each game log from isotropic before moving on. Discussion of the results is not necessary but it is encouraged.

Here is the bracket for the Chapel Division of the 2012 DominionStrategy.com championships: http://dominionstrategy.challonge.com/2012chapel


Full rules can be found here: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=5686.0

Each round, you are responsible for finding your opponent and scheduling a game by the end of the week. You may mutually agree to any rules you wish to play by. If you cannot agree you must play with the default rules as follows: veto mode off, identical starting hands on, official point counter on, fully random sets, point counter extension allowed.

The first player in the first game is decided by whichever player is 'higher' in the Challonge bracket. For round one, this means the higher seed will play first. To accomplish this, begin a game in the tournament lobby and select the player who is to play first. After that game, you may both move to the Secret Chamber lobby (but don't exit Isotropic!) and the player to play first will be the loser of the previous game.

If you have trouble scheduling, please message me and I will attempt to work it out.

Have fun and good luck!

4
2012 / Gardens Division: Bracket and Results
« on: December 02, 2012, 08:43:13 pm »
Results for the Gardens Division bracket are to be posted in this thread.

For each series post the overall winner and the number of games each player won. Please try to grab each game log from isotropic before moving on. Discussion of the results is not necessary but it is encouraged.

Here is the bracket for the Witch Division of the 2012 DominionStrategy.com championships: http://dominionstrategy.challonge.com/2012gardens


Full rules can be found here: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=5686.0

Each round, you are responsible for finding your opponent and scheduling a game by the end of the week. You may mutually agree to any rules you wish to play by. If you cannot agree you must play with the default rules as follows: veto mode off, identical starting hands on, official point counter on, fully random sets, point counter extension allowed.

The first player in the first game is decided by whichever player is 'higher' in the Challonge bracket. For round one, this means the higher seed will play first. To accomplish this, begin a game in the tournament lobby and select the player who is to play first. After that game, you may both move to the Secret Chamber lobby (but don't exit Isotropic!) and the player to play first will be the loser of the previous game.

If you have trouble scheduling, please message me and I will attempt to work it out.

Have fun and good luck!

5
Game Reports / Losing To Marin - Game Analysis
« on: November 28, 2012, 02:45:41 pm »
i do believe this is my first ever (non-tournament) game report. it gets a bit long, so it might be more of an annotated game than a game report but whatever. i've actually already mentioned this game before but it is one of the favorite games i have played and i think back on it quite a bit. i think it is a textbook example of Marin's style of play - building a beautiful engine first and then worrying about actually getting points later. anyway, to the game!
---------------------------
Game Log -
http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201209/09/game-20120909-174042-d1745065.html

Kingdom -
Bazaar, Cache, Colony, Counting House, Crossroads, Duke, Embassy, Expand, Forge, Moneylender, Platinum, and Wishing Well

Veto Mode -
so i rarely play veto mode, but in this case Marin had proposed the set to me and i was not about to say no to Marin. i had the first choice of veto and i got rid of nomad camp. Marin followed that up by vetoing stash. there were three reasons for my veto. first off, in any head to head engine building game i felt i was toast. i mean hey, it's Marin. second, i was leaning towards a BM approach and i assumed Marin would go for the engine, so losing the only plus buy hurts. third, nomad camp can cause some swingy openings. getting a nice 4/5 opening could really influence the game. i assume Marin vetoed stash because it would be just about the least useful card on board for an engine.

Potential Strategies -
looking at the board i see three main strategies: Alt-VP, BM, and a basic draw engine.

Alt-VP - Duke would drive this strategy. rely on cache and crossroads to power a Duchy/Duke strategy, perhaps grabbing a province or two when able. i felt this was too weak, especially on a Colony board, as the support was not that strong.

BM - so there are actually two BM approaches i considered here. first, and probably the most obvious, is embassy. embassy is one of the strongest BM options in the game, and i felt that it could play well enough on a board without any real plus buy. the second option is cache/counting House. a bit more of a stretch, but i felt it could play. this strategy would be reminiscent of a philosopher's stone game - you could green earlier than usual because your source of income would stay fairly strong as the game progressed

Draw Engine - Bazaar and Crossroads for actions, Embassy for draw. throw in a Wishing Well or two and then use Moneylender and Expand to thin and improve your deck.

My Strategy -
i decided to go with a BM approach, choosing the Embassy route over Cache/Counting House. i love Counting House, but i just couldn't bring myself to play that strategy against Marin. my basic buying strategy was to open Moneylender to thin a few copper, grab 2 Embassies as quick as possible (and a 3rd/4th later as needed) and then go at it. i would likely favor Platinum over Colony with my first $9+ hand, Cache over silver at 5, and a Crossroads over silver every 2/3 times i would buy a silver. i assumed Marin would play the draw engine.
---------------------------
Opening Turns -
i picked up my first Plat at turn 8. at that point my deck had a single embassy, a single moneylender, 2 silver, 2 Caches, a gold, and a plat. the cache buys thinned my deck some, but i felt they were worthwhile because of the sifting of Embassy and having the Moneylender. i picked up my second Embassy a turn later and then aimed to buy some Colonies. Marin had played just about as expected, grabbing a few Bazaar's, an Embassy, and then an Expand. no surprises there.

Mid-Game -
i picked up the pace turn 12, buying Colony/Platinum/Colony on consecutive turns. i picked up my 3rd colony turn 16, gaining a nice lead. Marin's only points had come from Forging away some Silvers and an Estate into a Province, though he had worked himself into a nice thin deck. turn 16 proved to be the turning point of the game. whether by design or reaction, this was the point where Marin shifted towards a Duke strategy. he used his expands to end turn 17 with two Duchies and a Cache.

i put on the pressure by picking up my 4th colony that same turn, and Marin responds with two more Duchies turn 19. what really blows me away though is how Marin does it. as mentioned before, the board has no plus buys, with the only ways to gain cards coming from Expand, Forge, and Cache. at this point Marin is able to draw most/all of his deck so he decides to just give himself some virtual +Buys anyway. by gaining a cache each turn he adds two copper too his deck. he has a Forge and two Expands, so he simply Forges a Cache into a Duchy and Expands copper into Silver or Wishing Wells, looking to Expand those cards again into Duchy/Duke next turn. this still blows my mind.

End Game -
i was getting nervous of a huge comeback and knew i had to end the game soon. the question was how. i would have little control over piling out, so it had to be the provinces or colonies. the question then becomes buy priorities. do i spend $9 on a province for points, or do i get the plat which can lead to a colony later? Embassy for the draw at $5 or a duchy/duke to rob from Marin? these are really hard decisions to make, and i suspect that this is where i let the game slip away.

my large 4 colony lead had dwindled fast. i had added 3 colonies and 2 provinces to that total, but in the end it wasn't enough. Marin was still drawing his deck, and his super powered dukes were able to cover most of that colony difference. Marin finished it all off with flair on turn 27, expanding into 2 provinces and a colony to win it by 3 points.
---------------------------
Takeaways -
first and foremost, i think Marin showed me that the normal conventions don't matter. he made dukes effective on a colony board, he created a workaround for not having a proper way to buy/gain extra cards, and he maintained control over the game by not allowing me the ability to pile out for the win. it is quite frustrating to have a large lead in a game and yet still feel like you don't have any control over it.

second, i think it showed me that you need to work on your contingency plans earlier rather than later. take Marin out of the game entirely by ensuring i can end the Colonies myself quickly by maintaining a good money density and draw power. the casual side buys of duchy or province need to be well thought out.

third, playing BM against someone 10-15 levels higher than you is a chump move.

6
we've had a couple of other threads derail (often with my help) into discussion about what should happen if/when the wiki goes live/public. i figured we might as well attempt to keep the discussion in one place.
some topics to discuss:
- main page - any aesthetic or content improvements to make, how to generate and vary main page content (featured article, did you know, etc)
- quality level before going public - how far along should pages be, how much infrastructure do we want in place
- editing ability - allow fully anonymous editing, restrict to registered accounts, only open certain pages for anon editing, editing rules and guidelines

7
Goko Dominion Online / FunSockets Q&A - Part 2 - soliciting questions
« on: September 20, 2012, 03:46:10 pm »
goko's responses to these questions can be found in this thread.
--------------------
hey all, i've been talking with FunSockets and they are game for running another Q&A session. for those unfamiliar, it will be a follow up to this one.  the Q&A is tentatively scheduled for October 3, giving you about two weeks to get in some questions.  the current format is unknown (possibly another video chat) but any suggestions there will be welcome as well. feel free to comment on or discuss any questions.

a few housekeeping comments...
  • if you are unfamiliar with the Goko implementation, consider heading over to the relevant FAQ post. it should provide answers to most basic questions.
  • try to keep your posts to a single question whenever possible. follow-up questions are cool, as are any explanations you want to add. too many questions in one post makes it harder for each point to be addressed, and it can be confusing as to which idea people are actually upvoting.
  • i would personally ask that you avoid being snarky whenever possible. we have other places in here where you can freely do that.  funsockets seems willing to actively address our community here, and i ask that we try to respect their effort.
  • the upvotes on each question will be used as a proxy for how important the community feels a question is, so even if you don't have a question yourself feel free to upvote other questions so they get answered.
  • once the questions start rolling in i will edit them into this post and rank them, similar to this.
  • please try to avoid duplicating questions when possible. i will try to be active in updating this post so that you can easily skim existing questions. any posts and ranks will be current to the time of my most recent edit.
  • in posting existing questions, i might edit them to keep things trim. if there is an issue with my edit let me know. either way, i will link to your full post.
  • Goko released a public beta of their product on september 21. they are addressing some questions and concerns over in this thread.
ask away!
--------------------
Communication
+12 - Can we get more regular updates of information of progress? Letting us know what is/isn't being worked on. Maybe a list of known issues and progress on resolving them?
+9 - Any word on release schedules for the unimplemented cards?
+7 - Please can we have more information about in game advertising?
+6 - What is the purpose of the 'invitational' beta that is still running but with an old version of the software? Is there a reason why there was no announcement made to the invited beta testers that a public beta was launched, or that the version they were testing was now outdated? Would you like to tell the invitational beta testers what their role is now?
+4 - Do you have a target date for a public reboot? When do you plan to add on new Beta users?
+3 - In the last Q&A you were asked about which other games Goko signed on for. Can you give us an answer to that now?
+3 - Have you guys considered starting a blog on your website?
+2 - Any update on the "something" for the beta testers that was mentioned on the get satisfaction page? Is there any reason to become an early adopter of the system with the pricing scheme as it is?

Bugs and Security
+5 - Are the reported memory leaks fixed?
+5 - There are still a ton of bugs/issues/etc that people have.  Would it be helpful of us to list them individually on GetSatisfaction?
+2 - What specific steps have been taken to close any security flaws (present in the original beta) in your system?
+1 - Did you release today (sept 21)? If so, how do we report bugs that we encounter in the release version?

Payment, Accounts, and Accessibility
+8 - Is the google requirement to obtain walled village firm? (this question is in reference to this)
+4 - What is the status of sessions being added? (when I to reload the page I can connect back to the game I was in instead of auto-forfeiting) Is this being worked on? Is it in testing? Is it something we will never see?
+4 - If the google requirement for walled village IS firm, is it possible that we can enter our google account once when we purchase walled village?
+4 - As you are accepting real money now, I suppose there will be no hard database resets anymore which result in losing our Adventure progress and game stats. Is my assumption correct?
+3 - If you buy the expansions in the beta with PayPal, will you get to keep the cards when this officially releases?
+2 - Will it be available in the app store? (even the computer version?)

Game Play
+7 - Will quick play be implemented for the launch? (like isotropics auto-match)
+7 - Is there any chance we can have our preferences saved from session to session?
+5 - Will there (ever) be the ability for users to combine sets they own to play a game?
+3 - When the iphone and other versions are implemented, will those players be able to play with players using a desktop?
+5 - Is there any chance that "very fast" animations will be changed to "turn off" animations?
+2 - I enjoy playing with random decks and choosing which deck i want to play. But since i bought the pack of 3 extension, i can't do random decks game like i want to do and i'm very upset since i paid money for something i could do by paying less!

Other
+15 - Is there anything that could be done to leave isotopic running? (for example, put it behind a goko pay wall) Does management @ Goko understand the perceived gaps in play enjoyment between the two systems?
+9 - Has any thought been given to alternate methods for obtaining the promo cards?
+4 - Are you happy with the traffic since launching into beta?  A quick check right now shows ~20-30 users logged into the goko beta, and 350+ currently logged into isotropic. What do you think is keeping them on isotropic? How do you plan on converting those users?
+4 - How does the rating system actually work? Numbers and formulas please...
+2 - What are the plans for the tournaments which give Victory tokens?
+2 - I personally think it is fair that we, the fans of the game, should be able to play the game with all the currently released cards (i.e. everything including all of Dark Ages) and with a decent interface. I would like to know why you won't give the OK for us to play with all of the Dark Ages cards on Isotropic?
+1 - How much work is being put into the iOS and mobile versions of the site? I tried playing on iPad and it made games ridiculously slow.

8
in it's current format, the Dominion World Master's Tournament (and related National Championships and feeder tournaments) feature 3 player games.  what would this community at large prefer to see from future tournaments? as a note, this is only a preference and will likely have no bearing on the future of the tournament

other threads have explored the best way to make 3/4 player tournaments work best, but i figured we should do a poll to see which format players prefer in the first place. the competitive community is rapidly growing and could potentially explode with the release of the funsockets app, so if there is to be serious change made to the format it would probably be best to appeal to Jay earlier rather than later.

feel free to vote and offer the reasoning behind the vote.

9
Dominion Articles / Mine
« on: June 18, 2012, 05:35:57 pm »
A Favorite Card of Mine
Let's be honest here: Mine is probably most famous for being the card everyone confuses with Mint.  A similar name, similar behavior, and the same $5 price point will do this.  Unfortunately, Mine's reputation doesn't get much better past that, considering:
  • It comes from the largely bland Base Dominion set, achieving the honor of being arguably the worst trash for benefit card of the set.
  • Council Room's Popular Buys ranks it as the 28th worst card by Win Rate With, and the 8th worst at the $5 price point.
  • The forum user base ranked it as one of the worst cards at the $5 price point.
 
Mine is very often an ignorable card, but as with many other middling/bad cards, in the kingdoms where it actually is useful it can be the star of the show. Much of Mine's intrigue is due to its fairly unique ability of gaining a card directly in hand. It is this ability which likely bumps Mine from the $4 to the $5 price point. This allows you the benefit of not only improving your deck but also improving your current hand.

Repeated Play
Mine is typically at it's best when it can be played repeatedly.  You can achieve this with Caravan/Laboratory stacks, Hunting Party/Golem decks, KC/TR, or conventional large draw decks.  Besides the obvious improvements to your deck in the long run, repeated play offers the benefits of not having to waste your buys to improve your economy. Because the upgraded card goes directly into your hand, you can not only improve your economy you can do so immediately. Sifters such as cellar and warehouse are also excellent ways to repeatedly play Mine, and their lower price points and fast cycling can make them more attractive options than HP or Laboratory.

Alternate Treasure Cards
Most players experienced with the card will attest to the fact that both Platinum and Potions can give Mine a huge boost.  The jump from Gold to Platinum is massive, and because of this Mine will always be more attractive on Colony boards than Province boards. Similarly, as this article points out, Mine is useful on Alchemy heavy boards because of its flexibility into and out of the race for potion cost cards.
Mine's power can be extended to most other alternate treasure cards as well. Horn of Plenty, Venture, Hoard, and Harem are all very attractive targets for Mine with a silver in hand. Additionally, Hinterlands was very kind to Mine, offering both Ill-Gotten Gains and Fool's Gold.  Mine lets you turn silver into IGG, IGG into another IGG, or IGG into gold, all of which are strong options.  Mine/Fool's Gold is a pretty solid (+4) opening according to Best/Worst Openings, allowing Mine to turn your early copper into a Fool's Gold in hand.

Other Trash for Benefit Cards
Remodel, Governor, and Apprentice really stand out here.  Because you gain the card in hand, you can immediately turn and benefit from the upgraded card. Mine that Silver into a Gold and then Remodel it into a Province, or use Mine on a treasure to net your Apprentice an extra 3 cards.

How To Play Mine
Mine can offer some tricky decisions when it comes to choosing what exactly you want to upgrade.  Should I swap Copper for Silver, or Silver for Gold? In general, Silver to Gold is probably the better move. Here are a couple of guidelines for helping to make that decision:
  • If it is a Colony board, you should prioritize upgrading S->G over C->S.  Your ultimate target is Platinum, so you will want the best chance of later upgrading Gold->Plat
  • If it is a board with discard attacks, you should prioritize S->G over C->S. You will be working with smaller hand sizes and you will want the larger bang for your buck.
  • Swindler makes things difficult.  You don't want to lose your coppers to curses, but at the same time Gold is often immune to the Swindler attack. This will be board dependent.
  • C->S should probably be prioritized on Jester boards. You do not want to be fed more copper, but you also do not want your opponent to grab free gold.  A similar suggestion can apply with Smuggler.

When To Ignore
Overall, it seems like most players don't have a problem ignoring Mine.  It is bought in only 47% of games, right in line with Spy. Even when it is bought, players seldom seem to buy more than 1.  However, there are some situations when it seems pretty clear Mine should be ignored. Games with heavy trashing are an easy choice, as A. you will have less cards to feed to Mine and B. you will likely have more attractive targets to trash into.  Similarly, Mine is avoidable in many engines, especially engines when most or all of your coin will come from your action cards.  A third option is decks with heavy attacks, especially Mountebank and Witch.  Not only do you want to avoid terminal collisions, you just won't see a worthwhile benefit because you won't be able to play Mine as often.

Works With:
Repeated Play (Caravan, Lab, Hunting Party, Golem, sifters)
Alternate Treasure (especially Platinum and IGG)
Other Trash For Benefit

Conflicts With:
Heavy Trashing
Strong Engines
Cursing or Discard Attacks
Other Strong $5 Terminals
Copper Based Strategies

10
Introductions / albany ny yo
« on: May 23, 2012, 03:00:40 pm »
- 25 year old electrical engineer living near albany, ny.  born in north jersey, college in rochester ny.
- i was introduced to dominion via jonts26 back in October 2010. i loved it and i proceeded to go buy the base set a few days later. i am also a big fan of puerto rico, poker, and scrabble.
- my username is based on the book of the same name. no deep meanings, i just happened to be re-reading it when i created the isotropic account. i am also a big fan of a song by the same name.
- i read a lot. too much maybe. currently working my way through the song of ice and fire series. i have read and own almost everything written by tolkien and orson scott card. i have also read a lot by: asimov, bradbury, camus, clarke, dostoevsky, gogol, huxley, lewis, and vonnegut.  really i will go for just about any sci-fi/fantasy or classic literature.
- i help maintain a FAQ for the forums. check it out.  lots of info in there and everything is sourced.
- some other varied interests - sabermetrics, distance running, longboarding, awful puns, community, ice cream, traffic cones, and soccer.

11
Dominion FAQ / Frequently Asked Questions
« on: March 16, 2012, 11:27:45 pm »
There is a community effort going on to develop a Dominion Strategy Wiki site. The Wiki provides a better source of information than this FAQ ever could, so from this point on the FAQ will work towards linking you to the relevant Wiki pages as the content is filled in. For Goko specific inquiries, this thread might be the most useful.

The Basics
Going Deeper
Older Stuff

12
Puzzles and Challenges / more puzzles
« on: November 16, 2011, 11:48:50 am »
i've seen a bunch of these, figured i'd give it a go. i'll start with an easy one.

which card is missing?

Watchtower
Island
Tactician
Colony
Hoard

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