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Messages - Donald X.

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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.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: April 08, 2019, 01:29:38 am »
I recently found a copy of Infiltration in excellent condition, and I can see that changing it to be closer to your Factory Job prototype would greatly benefit the gameplay. This has naturally gotten me curious about precisely how the prototype played.

I know you've been reluctant—and contractually obligated in the past—to giving the full Secret History due to issues with the publishing process, which is fine.
However, I'd like to know more about the prototype rules so I can play the game in basically its submitted prototype form, using the published components if possible. I've read every post I could find that you've made on the subject and I'm still having to guess a lot.

Would you compare and contrast the precise differences (outside of theming) between the prototype and published versions, with the expectation that this wouldn't include the reason behind the changes?
I couldn't tell you the reasons for their changes if I wanted to - I wasn't involved at all. Well actually they said they might want to add 5 items, did I have 5 more, and I made 5 more items and they didn't use them, which I found out when I got my copies. But beyond that, I wasn't involved at all. I handed over a prototype and they published a game.

The biggest thing is that in Factory Job it isn't any player's turn. We all pick actions or items, put them face down, reveal. Items go first, in alphabetical order (for a published game they would be e.g. numbered as alphabetic order isn't constant between languages), then actions go in a particular order (move in, move out, special, loot). Everyone doing an action does it at the same time (if you play an item that loots, you still loot when everyone else does). The normal cap on looting in a room is $100 a turn; if multiple people loot there at once they split the $100 evenly, leaving any remainder in the room (yes the numbers are all bigger).

The easiest way to get closer to Factory Job is to use the first three variant rules. "Extract" is closer to Loot than "Download" is; Factory Job has players draft items at the start, "Heist-style" (after another game of mine, Heist); there's just one deck of room cards so anything could be first or the basement (in theirs, the secret room).

For me the dilemma of action selection was the core of the game; it was bizarre that they changed that. The contract let me take my name off the game and I mean I considered it.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Male and female cards (again)
« on: April 04, 2019, 02:36:14 pm »
Maybe Donald can shed some light on Tormentor and Devil's Workshop? Others that maybe were based on instructions could be Plan, Wild Hunt, Skulk, Flag Bearer, Hideout and Barracks.
If the women all had chainmail bikinis, I suspect someone would be complaining about that too.

We got the sketch for Tormentor.

DXV: Tormentor / Imp / Devil's Workshop sketches are fine, except the Tormentor should be a woman.
Claus: I wanted to make her look like an old and strict kind of female inquisitor. Would you prefer her to be younger and prettier?
DXV: Old is fine; I just couldn't tell from the sketch that it was a woman.

Tormentor is a woman. Devil's Workshop is a man. Time does not permit looking them all up for you.

At the very beginning the artists just got card titles, and didn't always draw the right things, and almost always drew men. I started having artist notes, with the separate part about the expansion theme noting that we didn't want all men. The artists almost always drew men. For Guilds Jay decided to have only women do the art. They drew mostly men. From Adventures on, the artist notes have specified gender for every card supposed to be depicting someone, with half women. The varying %'s on those sets, that are never 50%, show how well the artists followed these instructions, and how often they added people somewhere unexpected and hey made it all men, or drew a crowd scene where everyone is a man. And, to a lesser degree, how much you-all assume any unclear figure to be a man.

Rules Questions / Re: Resolving Boons for Idol
« on: April 04, 2019, 01:13:00 am »
On #3, I think we were realizing the same thing that Donald X has with Boons and Idols, that there are a few of them that are not very useful when playing an Idol..
This was apparent from day one for Idol; the thing that I realized was that it bothered people too much to do it.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Male and female cards (again)
« on: April 04, 2019, 01:10:07 am »
I could be misremembering, but I believe Donald has indicated elsewhere that the directions to the artist suggested a woman for Donate.
Dictated, yes.

It looks like you forgot to mention that there are 12 Experiments.
You're thinking of Port.

Dominion Articles / Re: Glossary Update
« on: March 27, 2019, 01:02:17 pm »
If the point to the glossary is to be able to tell what someone means, then "milling Provinces" contributes, it's a thing people actually say.

It comes from Magic, where "milling" is commonly used to refer to putting cards from a deck directly into the discard pile. It goes back to the card Millstone.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Victory Card design considerations?
« on: March 22, 2019, 04:20:35 pm »
Was there ever any consideration of putting a Victory Point value (similar to the Treasure Value in the upper corners of the Victory Cards? (yes, there would be ? for those accumulative Victory cards like Gardens, etc).
No, no interest. A version of Base Cards put VP in the lower right corners, but there's no point to that.

And the answer to the original question about BoM would be? That BoM expects itself in play when it plays itself as a copy of another card? Or something else?
Band of Misfits expects itself to be in play.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Dominion current Popularity?
« on: March 17, 2019, 12:57:53 pm »
In the past few years, Dominion either is nowhere to be seen, or perhaps you may see a game or 2 of it in play.  But that's out of "a sea of tables" (up to 40 tables in some cases).  Or, I see someone with a very large box, I look inside, and see he's got 10+ sets of Dominion cards in there, so even though that copy wasn't being played at the moment I walked by, it does show someone has it and brought it in. 
It seems nice to have presence at cons, but that may be skewed towards new games, and there are other metrics. For example:

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: March 16, 2019, 12:48:00 pm »
In German, Walled Village is called "Carcassonne"  ::)
Not anymore!

There are games where you will have a better time making up rules as you see fit. Dominion isn't one of them. The designer spent immense amounts of time tweaking every single card, believe me, he knows what he's doing. For Quarry for instance, it's significantly cheaper than Gold and even better than it if you have extra buys, but only for Action cards. If you want to buy Province, Colony or Platin, Quarry is just an expensive Copper. It's not miraculously giving you points in itself.
Well I've made a bunch of mistakes, but Quarry isn't one of them.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: March 15, 2019, 04:01:56 am »
So, I heard, a promo card based on a church in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany is coming soon. Is there already a planned release date?
There are two promos coming. Altenburger asked for two, one for the winner of a tournament (it was RTT), the other for the winning province - people picked a province and something something one of them won. Altenburger forgot about the tournament winner promo, but we didn't, so they're both happening sometime this year. I don't have more of a release date yet; there isn't art yet so they're months away. I don't know if they will come out at the same time or what.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: March 09, 2019, 01:55:37 pm »
Would Inheritance work better if it was worded "(During your turns, all Estates gain the abilities and types of that card.)"?
It would make Inheriting most Reaction cards useless, but other than that it would mostly do the same thing as the original (except for when-gain shenanigans).
That was considered (first) and is no good. I Inherit Caravan Guard. On my turn I play an attack and you have an Estate in hand. It's a Caravan Guard! You react with it and now it's in play. On your turn you have an Estate in play and it's just an Estate, though you still get +$1. Or it's whatever you inherited (let's make it a Ferry'd Bridge Troll); either way it's a mess. I don't like even just, it's Moat and other players can Moat with their Estates. These aren't exotic edge cases either, they are two-card combos that people must do sometimes.

The Necromancer approach means yeeha with Death Cart but is otherwise great (and if I'm errata-ing three cards I could always consider errata-ing Death Cart too, which wouldn't change anything about it except for these interactions where it isn't in play). You don't get the joy of triggering when-gains but it's clear that you don't, and there's still plenty of fun to be had.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: March 09, 2019, 01:15:18 am »
I don't think that's actually a problem. It's fine for Estates to change their nature from one moment to the next; I think the problem Donald X. is alluding to is, at a given moment, one indistinguishable Estate-shaped bit of cardboard having a different nature from another.
Yes, many things can cause confusion, but having two cards with the same name do different things is the most severe problem.

Rules Questions / Re: Inn and Watchtower
« on: March 07, 2019, 04:56:13 pm »
Now I want to react with Watchtower to top-deck the Inn I just gained. Can I do that? Obviously, I'll have taken care to leave it on top of my discard pile rather than covering it with some other card, but does the mere act of selecting cards from my discard pile make Watchtower Lose Track of my newly-gained Inn?
A technical reading of the rules doesn't prevent this. You didn't cover up the Inn. We don't require you to keep your discard pile in the same order; if you cover up the Inn you can't do it. But uh online you can't change the order and irl if you pick up the discard pile and shuffle it and then oops wanted the Inn still on top, man it doesn't matter if you get the wrong Inn.

If I'd considered this case though, the rules might disallow it, in an effort to make it so you can learn the lose-track rule and actually know what will happen in cases like this. You physically pick up your discard pile, making it feel like you must be losing track in there. So, this ruling may change. But I like to go by the rulebook when I can, and while the rulebook doesn't actually cover all cases, the other cases were uh different.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: March 07, 2019, 01:58:50 pm »
On a similar note (I guess this is just a more specific version of that question), would you ever consider using another card that changes the types or abilities of other cards, similarly to Capitalism, Inheritance, or the vanilla bonus tokens from Adventures?
Something like Capitalism or Inheritance is fine, provided that all copies of a card are the same at all times. Band of Misfits, Overlord, and Inheritance break that rule, and well I still may errata them, they cause problems.

The Adventures tokens aren't out of the question, but in retrospect I don't like how many different tokens Adventures has, it's annoying pawing through them looking for the boot or whatever. I should have tried to get more use out of a smaller set of tokens. But, with that approach, that kind of thing in the future is okay.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Interview with Donald X.
« on: March 07, 2019, 01:56:02 pm »
Are there any Dominion themes or mechanics (aside from Potions) that you wouldn't consider ever using again or is it all fair game for future expansions?
Not happening:
- Potions - There are always people who speak up to say how they want more, but mostly people didn't like them, and they don't do anything essential for me.
- Hexes - They are just asking too much, horrendously slowing down games with casual players.

- Ruins - You need to include 50 cards to handle 6 players. That's a lot to ask of an expansion.
- Heirlooms - Naturally there can only be 7. Of course I could add a rule for "what if there are 8 of these" in order to do more.
- Boons - I think they were worth doing but I should have only done say 5 cards with them. They weren't received well enough to want to try to find more to do with them.
- Artifacts - They sound fine, but it was work to get 5 I could live with.

The space for possible new Events, Projects, and Landmarks is not impressive. However any new expansion could also have some other new thing that adds some space, e.g. if Renaissance had had Events there could have been ones that involved the tokens or an Artifact.

Overpay is unlikely except that I could do like one overpay card somewhere. It sets you up to have a way-too-wordy card, but if the top can be vanilla then it could be okay.

A lot of the set mechanics can just appear in any set on a few cards, and have: victory cards that do things, choose ones, durations, $7's, treasures that do things, care about variety or provide it, when-gain, when-trash, care about the trash, split piles. Then there are mechanics that require tokens or extra cards or mats, which will only appear as larger hunks of a set. And well then there's Night, I would want to have a bunch of that in order to include rules for it.

Dominion FAQ / Re: Cards in different languages
« on: March 07, 2019, 01:30:38 pm »
Can u please tell me if cards from different languages are the same?
I mean if the card's backs are visually the same and if they are made from same material? (Same feeling from touching them  :D )

The last translated expansion in my state is Dark Ages and they doesn't want to continue with translating other ones, so I decided to buy it in original version.
I need to know if I combine them (with cards from Czech Republic), will they be recognizable or are they the same?
I think the card backs are the same between languages. Individual printings can vary in how dark the back is, but the design is the same.

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