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Messages - Titandrake

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1
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: October 07, 2019, 01:32:07 pm »
In my experience, you have a better time if you think of Hideout as a cantrip trasher that happens to act like a village, rather than a village that comes with trashing. You can't sustain a ton of Hideouts but it's nice as a backup Village.

Captain is really good. Saying that Captain isn't that great because Band of Misfits isn't that good is like saying that Lab isn't that great because it's just Moat with +1 Action. The duration effect is the entire reason that Captain is good...

2
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: October 04, 2019, 01:01:02 pm »
Sure. By move up a few spots I meant I want it between Experiment and Border Guard and I want Swashbuckler to move down to just above Research.

3
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: October 04, 2019, 12:40:24 pm »
I'm confused how Hideout fell so low here. It's a cantrip trasher. Sure it's a bit slow but it has incidental +2 Actions and it could move up a few spots.

4
General Discussion / Re: roguelike games
« on: September 25, 2019, 06:33:08 pm »
Has anyone tried Noita yet? It sounds interesting, I can't justify buying it yet but it's on my radar.

5
Dominion Articles / Re: Occasionally Relevent Rule Edge-Cases
« on: September 25, 2019, 06:29:20 pm »
September 2019 errata updates:

  • Procession + Reserve cards still works like before - the card goes to the Tavern mat before it can get trashed and you still gain the card.
  • The entire section on Procession + Duration cards is no longer relevant. (However, the rules for how long Throne Rooms stay out is unchanged).
  • BoM + Overlord as Reserve cards no longer strands Band of Misfits or Overlord on your Tavern Mat, because they don't become a copy of the card. The action you choose will stay in its pile and you will not be able to call it later.
  • The BoM + Overlord and Conpirator interaction still works as stated.
  • The Adventures token interaction also works as stated - you get the effect of both any tokens on the BoM pile, and any tokens on the pile picked.
  • The entire Inheritance section is out of date. If you inherit Crossroads, your Estates will now give +3 Actions, because you're playing the "Crossroads" card. Your Estates will give Adventures token effects, because it's playing cards from that pile. Your Estates are now Action-Victory cards, even if you Inherit a card that has more types than just Action.
  • All the "shapeshifter" cards no longer give you "while this card is in play" effects.
  • Summon on Death Cart and other actions that gain cards on-gain will now work, when before they didn't.

6
Dominion General Discussion / Re: Dominion 2019 Errata and Rules Tweaks
« on: September 24, 2019, 05:16:11 pm »
I like all these changes, except that Procession no longer lets you Throne Duration cards. I understand why it's changed but that's a fairly notable nerf to the card.

If Procession had always worked this way I wouldn't have been upset, so sure, whatever, it's a brave new world.

7
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: September 24, 2019, 04:57:02 am »
The on-buy is the thing that stops Messenger from being bad. Very broadly, in an engine mirror, it's common for players to continually be evaluating trade-offs between buying-that-Village and buying-that-economy, where economy = Silver or terminal Silver or some other thing. You often hit a sort of mini-race, where you're trying to not lose the Village split, but also balance it with picking up economy and other Actions. What Messenger does is let you pick up economy, while making the Village race end faster. It doesn't help you win the Village split, but it makes it hurt less to detour for economy.

I'm not understanding how this is an overall benefit for you. Absent split/one-card pile situations, your opponent gets all of the same benefits.

You're effectively changing the rules of the game to be in your favor. If I know that you can buy 2 Villages a turn and I can only buy 1, then assuming I can handle the Messenger itself, it's in my interest to use Messenger to hand out 1-for-1 Villages until the pile runs out, to reduce how much I lose the split by. That's a somewhat contrived example, but it's just a more extreme version of the point I was trying to make above. If you pick up economy that doesn't help you get Villages faster, then you're going to be getting Villages slower than your opponent, so a 1-for-1 trade is slightly good for you.

The whole point of the Messenger on-buy is that if you use it, the effect isn't actually symmetrical - you get more out of the on-buy than your opponent gets out of it. Things ipofanes mentioned (giving out a 2nd Chapel when you don't have yours yet) are an example of this. It's not a particularly strong effect (Messenger deserves to be pretty low), but it's absolutely worth considering.

Plus the existence of the on-buy usually comes into play when considering 3-piles - makes it hard to treat Messenger like a blank card.

8
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: September 23, 2019, 08:32:49 pm »
Miser = a similar thing, where if you can afford to slowly thin out Copper with Miser, it's good, but sometimes you can't.

It's slow if you only buy one of them, which you shouldn't do if it's a game where Miser is good.

I agree that Hireling has a slowness problem, though. You have to wait a turn, and spend an Action and card slot on it before it actually does anything.

Miser is still slow even if you buy more than one of them. Spending your terminal space on Misers is a real opportunity cost for deckbuilding. The slowness is relative to what else you could be spending those terminals on, not the absolute speed of getting Coppers onto your Tavern mat and getting $ for it.

Edit: to quickly defend Messenger a bit...

Without the on-buy, Messenger would indeed be pretty bad. It would still get picked up for +Buy reasons, but it isn't where you want to be.

The on-buy is the thing that stops Messenger from being bad. Very broadly, in an engine mirror, it's common for players to continually be evaluating trade-offs between buying-that-Village and buying-that-economy, where economy = Silver or terminal Silver or some other thing. You often hit a sort of mini-race, where you're trying to not lose the Village split, but also balance it with picking up economy and other Actions. What Messenger does is let you pick up economy, while making the Village race end faster. It doesn't help you win the Village split, but it makes it hurt less to detour for economy.

Plus sometimes there's only 1 Action in the pile you're Messengering. You gain first so in that case you get the action for free.

Really the main problem is that the effect is stapled to a Woodcutter-Chancellor.

9
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: September 23, 2019, 04:19:39 am »
Hireling's just a bit slow. It's the same reason that Miser's low.

Hireling = $6 and a terminal action to get an extra card each turn. It's a powerful effect that is caught between two awkward positions: if the draw is very good, you're better off buying something else. If the draw is very bad, it takes you too long to set up your Hirelings. It's best around that middle zone where the cycling is okay and you need the Hireling draw to do something interesting, which isn't as good as cards where you always need their effects (like Chapel).

Miser = a similar thing, where if you can afford to slowly thin out Copper with Miser, it's good, but sometimes you can't.

10
Dominion General Discussion / Re: COMBO: hunting party/patron
« on: September 16, 2019, 02:36:07 pm »
Off-topic but isn't Menagerie/Patron actually a worse fit? If you want to keep activating your Menagerie draws you're incentivized to play all but 1 of your Patrons before playing Menagerie, so you'll get less reveal triggers. You're also incentivized to play extra Menageries early to get back down to a unique hand.

FWIW I have missed a lot of "obvious" interactions like this before because I'm too busy looking at other interactions.

11
Dominion General Discussion / Re: ThunderDominion Card List Results, 2019
« on: September 13, 2019, 04:19:24 am »
King's Court not #1? Sacrilege!

I don't get the hype over Worker's Village. It's useful, but not exactly game-changing (at least not any more than any other Village or +Buy).

Worker's Village is one of the best villages in the game, I think its placement is fine.

There's a bunch of kingdoms where the +Buy is either on a terminal card, or on a non-terminal card you have to go out of your way to pick up. Worker's Village means you basically don't have to think about buys, because you're going to get a bunch of them for free when picking up your +Actions. Because Worker's Village draws a card, it doesn't hurt to overload on them either.

I'm not sure how Venture made it over Royal Seal. Everything down there is a bit of a crapshoot but I'd move Venture to right above Counting House and shift everything else up.

12
Scepter + Leprechaun

Before your deck is reliable enough to play enough actions to trigger Leprechaun on demand, you can play Leprechaun early, play exactly enough Treasures, then play Scepter to replay Leprechaun for the Wish.

13
Dominion Articles / Re: Core Concepts of Dominion Endgames
« on: August 28, 2019, 01:43:21 am »
In correct play, you want to be spending all your gains on Actions, then flip a switch and spend all your gains on VP until the end of the game. Because of this, the 3rd choice of "do a bit of both" is something you want to do at most once, if you're on a in-between turn between deck improvement and cashing in your deck for points. If you end up doing this multiple times, you're probably playing loose, or the game's just weird.

One common situation when it's correct to keep picking up Actions while also buying cards that give VP has nothing to do with endgame conditions but just the lumpiness of $ that your deck generates.  If your deck generates $12 and 3 buys, there's a period of time (when the game isn't about to end) when you're going to pick up Province and another action (Smithy, Village, etc.), rather than Province and 2 Estates.  Of course, another element of building your deck is planning how much $ you build your deck to generate so that you can do the right amount of buying VP at the right time. In this example, building to $16 so that you can double-Province may be well worth it.

$12 and 3 buys is a bad example because I think I'd buy 3 actions in that situation, especially if I can expect to see 3 buys every turn.

I see the lumpiness point, but to me, if you're thinking of buying Province + Smithy, you're already in the endgame, you just haven't crossed the threshold of wanting to buy Duchies yet.

14
Dominion Articles / Core Concepts of Dominion Endgames
« on: August 27, 2019, 03:31:39 am »
(I found this draft in my old files. It's probably over a year old. I don't think I'll have time to polish it for a while, so I'll share it in its unfinished state.)

In my opinion, the most important thing you can do to level up your gameplay is improve your endgame. Dominion endgames are very difficult to play perfectly, but they give concrete edges, because tight endgame play lets you absorb bad luck and misplays without losing.


What is the Endgame?
--------------------------------------------

This is a deceptively tricky question to answer. I define it like this: the endgame starts when players start worrying about how much VP they have or can achieve. I don't define it by when players starting buying Victory cards, because plenty of endgames revolve around the threat of buying VP cards, rather than actually buying them.

Another way to put it is that the endgame is the point where players are thinking about win conditions. Is the board going to 3-pile soon? Am I positioned well? Do I have a lead of VP that I can hold until the end of the game, or can I catch-up to a VP deficit in time?


Level 0: Can I Win This Turn?
---------------------------------------------


On every turn, you should be considering whether you can win this turn. If you have a guaranteed win and you don't go for it, you're leaving free wins on the table.

Of course, this is all very obvious, but I've seen countless players miss clear wins, particularly 3-piles. It's easy to tell when you can empty the Provinces, but 3-piles can be more complex.

Roughly, in the endgame, each player has a certain amount of potential. When ending the game, you are usually bottlenecked by these constraints.

  • The money you can produce
  • The number of gains and buys you have, and what kind they are (Workshop gains are only up to $4 costs, for example).
  • How many points you need to end with a lead.

Your potential is defined along these 3 axes: money, gains, and VP. Different 3-pile endings hit these constraints in different way. For example. with $24 and 3 buys, I can buy 3 Provinces for 18 VP. If I have $16, I can't buy 3 Provinces, but if I have 8 buys/gains and two piles are empty, I can empty Estates for 8 VP. If, somehow, 2 piles are empty, I have $0, I have 10 buys, and have a VP lead of 11 points, then I could even buy 10 Curses to get the 3-pile ending.

The most complicated 3-piles involve overdraw, trash-for-benefit, cards that gain cards to the top of your deck, and so on. Many 3-piles are not this complicated. I generally follow this flowchart:

"Can I gain enough cards this turn to potentially trigger a 3-pile?"
"If I can, do I have enough money and the right types of gains to do so?"
"If I do so, how much do I have left-over to pick up VP, and is that enough?"

If the answer to all these questions is yes, then you have a 3-pile. Otherwise, you don't, which takes you to the next part.


Level 1,2,3,4,...: How Do I Make Sure my Opponent's Can't Win?
-------------------------------------------------------


Now we're getting to the fun stuff. If the most important part of Dominion is ending the game on a win when you can, then the 2nd most important part is making sure your opponent can't do this.

This is much harder because it requires tracking what your opponent's deck can do. Luckily, your opponent does you the favor of playing their turn right before yours. It's usually good enough to get a feel for how strong your opponent's deck is based on what it's previously done, and you can leave the card counting for high-stakes scenarios.

Like every other game, if you can't end the game, you want to make moves that make sure your opponent can't end the game. This is Level 1 - planning 1 turn ahead. Ask the same 3 questions, as if you were your opponent, and see what board states give them the guaranteed win. Then, figure out if that limits anything about what cards are safe to buy this turn.

More subtly, if your opponent is good (and you should always assume your opponent is good), then they're trying to do the same thing as you. So at the same time, you'd like to make moves that give you more endgame potential. The more pileout power your deck has, the more limited your opponent's moves become, since when they do their Level 1 planning, they'll have fewer safe buys because you win in more board states. This is Level 2 - planning 2 turns ahead by making a play that makes it harder for your opponent to play 1 turn ahead.

The levels keep going up from there, but it generally turns into intuition / "game sense" when you try going much further up the hierarchy. Dominion's a game of chance and it's just too hard to reason about the odds several turns in advance.

Once you know what parameters you can play with (what cards are and aren't safe buys), you have a few options.
  • Pick up a bunch of VP this turn. This protects you from losing because it forces your opponent to dedicate more resources to picking up points, which can give protection against pileouts. It can stop you from winning because your deck will generally become less consistent.
  • Pick up a cards that increase what your deck can do. This makes life harder for your opponent, because it opens up more potential pileouts, but it doesn't give you any points and it generally brings the game closer to an end.
  • Do a bit of both: buy some Actions and Treasures and then pick up some VP as well.

In correct play, you want to be spending all your gains on Actions, then flip a switch and spend all your gains on VP until the end of the game. Because of this, the 3rd choice of "do a bit of both" is something you want to do at most once, if you're on a in-between turn between deck improvement and cashing in your deck for points. If you end up doing this multiple times, you're probably playing loose, or the game's just weird.

When unsure whether you should build or buy points, building is usually better because it keeps your deck more consistent. If possible, you really want to keep your deck consistent in the endgame, because the endgame is about threatening what your deck can do. If your deck isn't consistent, then your opponent can respect your pileouts less, and that frees up their options.

15
Other Games / Re: Dicey Dungeons
« on: August 26, 2019, 04:20:38 am »
After unlocking and beating my first bonus round (Episode 6), I'm thinking that episode is the one intended to have the most replayability. Your level-ups are still consistent, but at the start of the game you choose your starting items out of 2 options, and at the start of every level you get a random rule that makes the game harder. For the random rule, you can choose to either accept the given rule, or reroll a new one. It makes the game harder in a more random way than just giving all the enemies more health, which I appreciate.

16
Other Games / Re: Dicey Dungeons
« on: August 25, 2019, 04:27:02 am »
I didn't think I would play Dicey Dungeons very much, but I have about 8 hours so far and expect to play a bit more. I have Episode 1 beaten with the first 5 classes and am trying to finish all episode with the Warrior (have Episodes 1 to 5 finished).

Problems I have with the game.
  • It's really hard to get a very different build. You don't have a lot of slots, and the guaranteed level-up equipment is often good enough by itself to form an okay build. Each run is short enough that you don't see very many different builds.
  • So far, it's felt like the final boss always has a chance at beating you if you get unlucky, no matter how good your build is. Maybe this will change when I get a better handle on how to play around the different bosses, but it's annoying when this happens, because it doesn't feel like it's my fault.

Despite this, I've been having fun. I haven't been calculating probabilities or anything, I've mostly been playing by feel. As for farming, I've basically decided not to do this.

I do agree that the game could really use more depth. But it's got a lot of breadth if you start playing the different episodes. After beating episode 1, you unlock challenge episodes where the rules change, but it doesn't just change the rules, it also changes the hardcoded items you get on level-ups and in chests. For example, episode 3 of the Warrior changes your starting weapon to Venus Fly Trap (do same damage as dice number, +2 health if you place a 6), but when you level up, your max health drops by 2. This is a big nerf, because by the time you hit the final boss you only have 16 or 18 max HP. To counter this, it feels like you're more likely to get shields, your level-up choices are changed to give you options to survive more easily, it's easier to get equipment like Midnight Charm to turn non-6s into 6s, and the weapon pool includes more weapons where attacking with a 6 gives you a bonus.

So, each class gets boring to replay the same episode for, but many episodes act as different variants of that class. I expect that if I finished all the episodes, I would stop playing the game, but that'll take a while to get to.

17
Other Games / Re: Dicey Dungeons
« on: August 17, 2019, 12:44:59 am »
Hey, remember this?

Well, the game has officially released. Check it out.

18
Dominion Articles / Re: Dominion Cap Management (Unfinished)
« on: August 13, 2019, 10:22:07 pm »
I think this is a good start but could use cleaning up.

I'm not sure why you need to say things like "Dominion is a game of skill", this feels like it isn't actually saying anything.

I'm not fan of the word "cap", I like potential better.

The time cap doesn't seem very useful to me. You have to consider when the game ends, but uniquely this depends way more on your opponent than anything else. These are useful questions to ask but it isn't like you have "time potential" or "time cap" or anything. It's more about whether you have inevitability or not.

For Oppression, it seems very very similar to the opposite of consistency, and an example like Ghost Ship may be better than junker example. If you are Ghost Shipped every turn your deck can still be consistent, it's just that your deck is consistently performing terrible.

It seems weird to define Draw without considering whether you can play the draw. Every other cap has the property that you can increase it by itself without worrying about the other caps, and your deck will get better. Of course, your deck is better if you coordinate how you're trying to improve each of the caps. But Draw feels like it isn't an example of this.

I don't think you want to define the Kingdom as a separate cap. You want keep it at the level of, the Kingdom defines the upper bound of every other cap and decides which ones you prioritize. It feels like needless notation to describe this as a "Kingdom cap".

The general feeling I got was that I don't feel like I learned anything. I think it would be stronger to give examples of how you increase / decrease different caps.

19
What about if you only have $1 or $2 and there's nothing good at that price? Still not worth it?

It's more appealing when you don't have any money, if only because the opportunity cost is lower, but my intuition is something like "buy it 1-2 VP sooner than usual" if your hand sucks. It's like how if you hit $3 and the Actions you want to buy cost $4+, you don't have to buy that Silver.

20
Who says Silver doesn't belong in a Colony game?

In a game with Lucky Coin and Merchant, I put Plan on Merchant. My Opponent didn't contest Merchant. Double Wharf as terminal secured +buy and enough coin to clear Colonies within 15 turns.

I mean, Silver's a fine card, even in Colony games. If you're going down the Treasure route Silver's still better than nothing in Colony games.
It makes no sense to me but WanderingWinder said it is true so I have always believed it to be true.
It's a money density thing. To buy Colony, you need $11. A hand of 5 Silvers generates $10. So adding Silver to your deck never helps you reach your desired money density. Of course that's less valid when you have lots of draw.

I don't think money density is the right way to look at this. Roughly, what you care about is how often you hit $11+, and money density only talking about the average doesn't express this super well.

If you assume that the only reasonable way to hit $11 is by drawing your Platinum, then the problem isn't how you hit $11, it's how you hit $6 from your non-Platinum treasures. So by buying Silver, you slightly slow down how often you get to see your Platinum, but you increase the odds that your non-Platinum treasures contribute to hitting $6, and my guess is that missing $11 is bad enough that you're okay with this tradeoff most of the time.

21
Who says Silver doesn't belong in a Colony game?

In a game with Lucky Coin and Merchant, I put Plan on Merchant. My Opponent didn't contest Merchant. Double Wharf as terminal secured +buy and enough coin to clear Colonies within 15 turns.

I mean, Silver's a fine card, even in Colony games. If you're going down the Treasure route Silver's still better than nothing in Colony games.

22
Titandrake, the Smithy-Big Money players may be buying Duchies too early in the simulations. With two of them and one Gardens player, they can probably collectively improve their chances by holding off on Duchies to help empty the Provinces faster. Of course in an actual game they’d find it hard to coordinate in this way.

I tried this a bit and actually found the default rule of "Duchy when Provinces in supply <= 5" did best. Remember that it's a 12 Province game so this corresponds to buying Duchies after the 3rd-4th Province.

I doubt tweaking it is going to flip uncontested Workshop Gardens from 75% down to a fair fight of 33%.

23
Hello,

We play casually with 3 to 4 people (only have the basegame) and the last times Workshop+Garden was in the kingdom
it was either only one person going for it and winning or multiple people going for it and placing last and second to last.
Is this a prisoner's dilemma where the options are either someone taking a very likely loss by contesting gardens or allowing the gardens player to win?
I'd appreciate advice on this an I am sorry if there are obvious resources on this I overlooked (most only dealt with 2 player games).

I'm not sure if Prisoner's Dilemna is the exact right word for it, but multiplayer does have this property.

For example, suppose the kingdom has a deck that supports an engine that beats a simpler treasure-based approach, but only if the engine gets to 7 Villages. In a 2-player game, if one player goes for the engine and the other player doesn't, the engine wins. In a 3-player game, if two players compete on the Villages, the 3rd player who doesn't compete on them gets the win instead.

Because of this, multiplayer tends to involve more posturing: buying cards that could lead into two possible strategies, and delaying which one you commit to until after you see what the other players are doing. The problem is that the later you commit, the worse your deck is.

There is a short series of articles about the difference between 2-player and multiplayer here: https://dominionstrategy.com/2018/05/24/reader-survey-and-intro-to-multiplayer-article-series/

For Workshop Gardens in particular, you really have to commit to it early for it to be good, so it's hard to do this posturing. I'm not sure if it's unbeatable if only 1 player goes for it. If only 1 player goes for it, try not contesting or barely contesting Gardens at all, and force them to empty all the Gardens and Estates on their own. This should give you enough time to get enough points from Provinces to win. This works pretty often in 2-player, the reason I'm not sure it works in 3-player is that the Gardens player gets 12 Gardens instead of 8.

EDIT: well I tried a few quick things in Geronimoo's Sim and in a 3-player game, one Workshop/Gardens vs two Smithy-BigMoneys wins ~75% of the time, even if the Smithy players avoid Estates. And then two Workshop/Gardens vs one Smithy-BigMoney wins almost none of the time. Of course the simulator isn't perfect, but it does suggest Workshop-Gardens is hard to beat if only one player plays it.

24
Dominion General Discussion / The dead can rise again
« on: July 03, 2019, 03:25:45 am »
You know what they say: no one's ever really gone. From the ashes of ill-advised VC funding and abandoned domain names comes a new company, taking up a mantle that's been dormant for years.

https://www.goko.com/

25
General Discussion / Re: roguelike games
« on: June 30, 2019, 08:59:10 pm »
I unlocked Aria.

I think I'm not going to play Aria until much, much later.

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