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Dominion Isotropic / The point counter/game tracker
« on: July 20, 2012, 01:55:43 pm »
Alright, I know this is a touchy subject, but here we go again...

I have encountered quite a few players recently who use the extensive version of the point tracker AND who disallow their opponent from disabling.  Maybe the prevalence hasn't increased and I'm only now noticing this because I now understand just how much of an advantage it provides to the player running the tracker vs. their opponent. But regardless, it seems like a problem.

My understanding is that this has been clearly labeled a variant - and thus unacceptable unless all players agree to it. 

Is there any way to stop people from preventing disabling?  Shouldn't that element be built into the add-on?

It is seriously reducing my desire to play Dominion.

Dominion Isotropic / AFK etiquette
« on: June 16, 2012, 02:57:07 pm »
Not a big deal, but just wondering what people think:

I tend to play Dominion a lot when I'm doing other things.  Grading papers, reading, etc.  I use Dominion as a 10 minute break here or there during the day.  Because of this, I often play a game and then just sit in the lobby for a while until I come back to play another.

I have a lot of games proposed against me.  Often from folks like WanderingWinder who want a game against the highest-ranked person available.  But often from other folks, too.  I always accept proposed games when I'm ready to play a game, and always decline if I notice that it was proposed and I'm not ready to play.  But when I don't have the Isotropic window open, I'm sure I miss a lot of the challenges.  Is it bad form to sit in the lobby indefinitely and time out on these proposed games?  Is it bad form to sit in the lobby and decline games when I'm not in the mood to play? 

I should probably just close the window and only re-open when I want to play, right?  The only thing there that I feel slightly bad about is that it will disproportionately give me first-player advantage, by closing the session after wins fairly regularly.

Dominion General Discussion / What cards are the most fun?
« on: June 02, 2012, 09:51:44 pm »
I'm curious to hear what people consider their favorite cards.  Use whatever criteria you'd like.  But basically what I'm looking for is the cards that make you most excited to see pop up in a newly-composed game.  It could be because they enable awesome turns, because they are interesting and unique in how they work, because they force games in the direction that you most prefer (i.e. - engine folks almost always hope to see a village), or even just because you happen to be very good at playing that card.

I bet that a lot of the favorites are among the most-hated cards for others.  King's Court, Goons, Possession, etc.  Some people love them and others loathe them.

I answered this question as part of the DS tournament 6 months ago, but my opinions have changed a bit since then, so I'll list five here:

Ambassador - It's an evil, evil card.  And it is incredibly frustrating to get on the wrong side of it.  But I really enjoy seeing it these days because it means the game is very likely going to reward some serious strategic thinking, not just good tactical play.

Watchtower - It's often a fairly dead card, but I LOVE games when Watchtower has a chance to shine.  Watchtower-driven engines are enormously fun once they get going.  It really only works when you need both features of the card.  You use the draw power to keep working through your deck, and then you top-deck all the key components to ensure the next turn works just as well.  And the best part is, you're quite resilient to most attacks.  With Watchtower in hand, handsize reducers often HELP you and cursing attacks are meaningless.

This game was particularly fun:

Menagerie - This is one of those cards that frustrates me a fair amount (when my opponent isn't building around it but just happens to luck into perfect hands), but in spite of that it's a really fun card.  It's obviously very powerful, but there's just a lot of fun in building the incredibly diverse deck.  Some of my favorite games ever are Menagerie-Black Market ones.  You can just go completely nuts.

Fishing Village - This one is pretty obvious.  Some decks will prefer to have Worker's Village for the +buy, or lack in +cards from other sources and so don't want to lose hand-size while playing villages.  But if you want a village in the kingdom, more often than not you'd prefer it be this one.

Apprentice - Lets you trash Estates early, silver in the mid-game, and Provinces at the end.  And all kinds of other things.  I like the way Apprentice-heavy games can putter along for a bit and then simply explode.

Honorable mentions: Vineyard, Apothecary, Wharf, Horn of Plenty, Scheme

Game Reports / How lucky did I get?
« on: May 25, 2012, 03:55:41 pm »

Played this game with Marin.  We both dipped into the Black Market.  I got Tournament (which is of course one of the best cards to get from the Black Market for obvious reasons), Governor, and Apprentice.  He got Forge and Crossroads. 

Hamlet was the only other village in the BM deck.  The other key action cards in the regular supply were Wharf, Goons, Stables, Cartographer.

Given what we drew, it forced different strategies. The +actions from Crossroads were huge.  It meant he could trash down and produced an engine that could draw most of his deck most turns - but which was short on cash.  My only +actions were from Trusty Steed.  That, the lack of trashing, and the desire to get Provinces to start picking up prizes, meant I started investing in Provinces.

I was hoping to regularly play Governor and then force a discard with Followers or Goons.  But it quickly became clear to me that the dearth of actions meant I really had limited options.  If I wanted to use the Wharves to prevent routine dead hands, I couldn't afford to spend other actions very often.

Definite mistakes I made: 1) not getting Bank earlier, to bump up my purchasing power.  2) not taking Hamlet when I drew it from the BM deck on turn 12.  I didn't even realize I had missed it until I went back to look at the log.  In retrospect, that's a huge error and would have really secured things for me.  Problem of being on autopilot.

Possible mistakes I made: 1) not taking Followers in my first couple prizes.  Marin was convinced that this was a big error, but I'm not really sure.  The lack of actions meant I wouldn't be able to play it easily.  And, since he was regularly drawing everything, he could probably overcome the hand-size reduction and then trash the Curse all on the next turn.  Meanwhile, playing Followers would often mean NOT playing Wharf, which was more important for me, I think.  Or Goons, which is probably better than Followers - since it gives VPs and the Estates were more likely to clog me up than the Curses were him.  2) Not using Apprentice more aggressively earlier?  Should I have killed a Province or two in the effort to end the game quicker?  I'm not really sure WHERE I would have done this, though.  I was generally oscillating between complete dead hands and drawing most of my deck.

Marin felt like he played as well as he possibly could.  Do people agree?  I thought he did a great job of putting things together given his own action limitations, but are there places he could have maximized more?  It seemed to me like there were a few places where he used Forge rather than playing his second Goons that might have been wrong.  Turn 17 in particular?  I'm not sure, but it seems like maybe getting more VPs there is the key thing - and it might set him up to Forge/buy the last few Provinces on the next turn. 

Dominion General Discussion / Possession
« on: April 16, 2012, 02:03:12 am »
It's a really stupid card.  I know that this is not saying anything people don't already know.  But it's a really stupid card.

Game Reports / What goes well with Jack? (Hamlet and Vault)
« on: March 19, 2012, 01:23:28 pm »
Got a bit lucky here, but buying a Province every single turn from 8-14 is pretty awesome.

Jack+Hamlet is great, because it lets you cycle through the coppers, and gives +buy if you need it.  It's basically Festival/Library except the buying power comes from the silvers. 

Vault loves decks that are full of green and high-value money - so it works great with Jack, too.  Though if your opponent is also using Jack, the option to discard is damaging.  Still, good combo, I think.

Combine all three and you've got a pretty strong deck. 

Dominion Videos and Streams / My attempt at a video
« on: January 17, 2012, 10:41:08 pm »
So I thought I'd join in on the action. 

Here's my first effort:

I don't have anything except the internal microphone, which means the audio is pretty quiet.  Not sure how I can improve that absent buying a better microphone.  I think the picture quality turned out pretty well, though.

The game itself is pretty strange.  I went for Scrying Pools after a round of Sea Hags, so it's quite drawn out (like, over 20 minutes).  If you can manage to slog through it, we were both pretty curious how I actually won.  He had 8 Hunting Parties but could never really get his deck off the ground, where my Scrying Pools managed to slice through the mess of curses far better.  Would love feedback. 

Dominion Articles / Combo: Apothecary, Wishing Well, Coppersmith
« on: November 18, 2011, 07:33:11 pm »
Apothecary is good in combination with Wishing Well (which turn into Labs) and with Coppersmith (which doubles the value of all those copper you uncover).  Put them all on the same board and it's even better.

Really, the combo also needs to include a village that gives +buy so you can spend all your money.  In this case it was a Festival, though Worker's Village would also be good since it's a cantrip which will help you cycle.  Sadly this means this combo is vanishingly unlikely to ever be seen again.  But it sure was a lot of fun to play.

And frankly, since you need to buy potions, and since you need to get a +buy before you can turn your monster hands into anything more, it's not really that fast.   In this game I got my 4th Province on turn 12 which is good, but nothing mindblowing.  Mostly it was just fun to build a powerful engine with usually-mediocre cards like Wishing Well and Coppersmith.

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