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151
Dominion General Discussion / What cards are still unique?
« on: October 27, 2011, 12:20:19 am »
So okay, all Dominion cards are unique in that none of them are exactly the same as any others. But most of them are made up of more or less the same atoms, as Donald once put it: +cards, +actions, +buy, +$, +VP; discard, trash, reveal, set aside, gain, top-deck, look at; etc. But there are a few cards that do things unlike anything any other card does. Now that Hinterlands is out, several cards that were unique for a long time are no longer unique—Mint is obviously no longer the only card with an on-buy effect; thanks to Inn, Counting House is no longer the only card that allows you to remove cards from your discard pile. But there are new unique features to some of the cards in Hinterlands, and some of the unique features of other cards are still unique:

Ambassador is the only card that can return a card to the Supply.
Coppersmith is the only card that changes the effect of playing another card.
Duchess is the only card that changes the effect of gaining another card.
Embargo is the only card that changes the effect of buying another card.
Inn is the only card that allows you to shuffle your non-empty deck.
Masquerade is the only card that allows cards to be passed between players.
Outpost is the only card that changes how many cards you draw in cleanup.
Pearl Diver is the only card that causes you to interact with a card in your deck other than the top card.
Philosopher's Stone is the only card that allows you to count your discard pile.
Possession is the only card that allows one player to make decisions for another player's turn.
Stash is the only card that allows you to stack the deck while shuffling.
Tunnel is the only card sensitive to when something is being discarded.
Young Witch is the only card that changes the number of Kingdom piles in the game.

Are there any other cards with totally unique properties? Note that even some cards with oddball features, like Grand Market, have atoms that exist in other card properties. (Grand Market and Contraband both have effects that can forbid you from buying something; Grand Market and lots of other cards have effects that are sensitive to what is in play at the moment.) Note that I don't discriminate between what triggers the effects; in the case of Young Witch and Duchess, it's simply their presence in the game. What triggers an effect (on play, on buy, on gain, when in play, when present, etc.) is just another atom.

152
Puzzles and Challenges / Dominon analogies
« on: October 25, 2011, 12:36:45 am »
Not really a puzzle so much as a game. I occasionally enjoy constructing analogies based on Dominion cards, in the "A is to B as X is to Y" form. Sometimes this can be done through exact shuffling around of vanilla bonuses—the most trivial examples I can think of are

Village:Worker's Village :: Peddler:Market
Village:Bazaar :: Market:Grand Market

Similarly precise analogies are

Highway:Bridge :: Peddler:Woodcutter
Laboratory:Smithy :: Familiar:Witch
Laboratory:Caravan :: Bazaar:Fishing Village
Apprentice:Laboratory :: Salvager:Woodcutter (if you ignore Apprentice's effect on Potion costs)
Contraband:Gold :: Envoy:Smithy (think about it)

However, it's hard to come up with pairs of cards that match up quite so precisely as those. Are there any other good ones?

That said, there are some almost-perfect analogies that are pretty good:

Scheme:Golem :: Herbalist:Adventurer
Apprentice:Bishop :: Laboratory:Monument
Walled Village:Village :: Treasury:Peddler

For the following analogies to work, you have to ignore some of the details of the effects of the cards involved, but the analogies are based on the main interesting things about the cards:

Followers:Torturer :: Trusty Steed:Pawn
Silk Road:Scout :: Vineyard:Scrying Pool
Scrying Pool:Apothecary : Throne Room:Coppersmith
Minion:Cellar :: Horse Traders:Secret Chamber
Crossroads:Menagerie :: Scout:Hunting Party :: Silk Road:Fairgrounds
Scout:Rabble :: Farming Village:Fortune Teller
Moat:Lighthouse :: Horse Traders:Caravan
Outpost:Possession :: Workshop:Smugglers

And here are a few card pairs that I think must have some other pair of cards with the same relationship, but I just can't think of any good comparisons. Thoughts?

Courtyard:Mandarin :: ??
Upgrade:Remake :: ??
Conspirator:Peddler :: ??
Border Village:Haggler :: ??

What good card analogies have I  missed?

153
Dominion Isotropic / Alchemist (Treasury) / Scheme bug
« on: October 22, 2011, 03:52:10 pm »
There seems to be a bug in that if I have both Alchemists or Treasuries and a Schemed card to return to the top of my deck, Isotropic won't allow me to return the Schemed card first. See this thread for discussion:

http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=841.msg12536#msg12536

154
Rules Questions / Alchemist/Scheme interaction
« on: October 20, 2011, 04:15:08 pm »
So okay, how do Alchemist (or Treasury) and Scheme's top-decking ability interact?

Scheme: "...If you discard it from play this turn, put it on your deck."
Alchemist: "When you discard this from play, you may put this on top of your deck..."

Given that they're both "when discard" effects, and you can choose the order in which to discard your cards during cleanup, you should be able to put the card you Scheme above, below, or between your Alchemists, right? I'm pretty sure that's right; I just want to double-check.

155
Game Reports / Five-player Dominion is weird, man
« on: October 04, 2011, 01:21:58 am »
So I played this five-player game of Seaside a couple days ago:

Haven, Lighthouse, Native Village, Pearl Diver; Ambassador, Fishing Village; Cutpurse, Island, Pirate Ship; Merchant Ship

There's a lot of cool synergy in this board. In a many-player game Pirate Ship becomes more valuable because each time you play it it has a higher probability of hitting someone. And ordinarily if you're going for a Pirate Ship strategy you want a lot of Pirate Ships, so you can play them more often and build up their value faster (Fishing Village will help with that!). But of course in a five-player game you can't get a lot of Pirate Ships, since there's only two per person to go around anyway. And there's a lot of +$ actions, so maybe you can get away with a non–Pirate Ship–based strategy anyway. At the same time, Ambassador becomes a little dangerous to use, since passing out Estates with it can empty a supply pile very quickly and end the game before you're ready.

What I ended up doing was opening Pirate Ship / Fishing Village and constructing a very thin deck. Obviously everyone else's Pirate Ships did a good job of trashing my copper, and after the second or third reshuffle I picked up an Ambassador and finished the job for them. (I Ambassadored a pair of Estates once, but left the third in my deck because I was worried about premature pile-emptying.) Also, the large number of Duration cards meant a lot of them would be regularly missing reshuffles, reducing the effective size of the deck; as a result of this, by mid-game, although I only had one Pirate Ship I was able to play it almost every turn, compensating for my inability to get more than one. Once I got it up to $4 I stopped attacking with it, and together with my Fishing Villages and one Merchant Ship I started having $8 hands regularly. When I didn't have $8 I'd buy an Island to clean out my Provinces and keep the deck running smoothly. I ended the game by noticing there were only three Islands left in the supply and Ambassadoring them to empty the fourth pile.

156
Puzzles and Challenges / Think outside the box: what's missing?
« on: September 26, 2011, 08:59:03 pm »
I don't mean "think outside the box" as in, like, outside the box of Dominion cards or anything. I just mean, you know, the thing these cards have in common is sort of an offbeat property.

What one card will make this list complete?

Duchy
Province
Stash
Vault
Wharf
Witch

Update: also Baker, Cache, Rats, Rogue, and, appropriately, Count!

157
Puzzles and Challenges / An easy "what's missing"
« on: September 26, 2011, 12:47:40 am »
This one's intended to be pretty easy but I think it's fun. What one card is missing that would complete this list?

Fairgrounds
Gardens
Goons
Horse Traders
Nobles
Smugglers

Honorable mention: Ironworks

Plus:
Catacombs
Hunting Grounds
Ill-Gotten Gains
Rats
Spoils
Stables
Survivors

Honorable mention: Crossroads

158
Puzzles and Challenges / So what else is missing?
« on: September 24, 2011, 01:51:45 am »
This one is a bit of a toughie, I think. What one card can be added to complete this list?

Black Market
Embargo
Golem
Pirate Ship
Trade Route
Transmute
Treasure Map

Honorable mention: Curse

(Hope I haven't missed any....)

And now also: Crossroads, Cultist, Duchess, Fool's Gold, Madman, Rats, Spoils

159
Dominion General Discussion / Card types
« on: September 11, 2011, 09:33:30 pm »
Is it just me, or does it seem to be more or less the case that each expansion focuses on or emphasizes the role of one of the card types, compared to the other expansions?

  • Intrigue: has more Victory cards than any other set, and a few cards (Scout, Baron, Duke) that interact specifically with Victory cards.
  • Seaside: introduces Duration cards, and has eight of them.
  • Alchemy: has several cards (Vineyard, University, Scrying Pool, Golem) that interact specifically with Action cards, and lots of +action to play them all.
  • Prosperity: has far more Treasure cards than any other set, and several cards (Loan, Counting House, Mint, Mountebank, Venture, Grand Market, Hoard, Bank) interact specifically with Treasure.
  • Cornucopia: seems to break the pattern, but it does introduce Prize as a new card type.
  • Hinterlands, according to the promotional material, has more Reaction cards than any other set.
So, what do you think? Am I imagining this tendency?

160
Game Reports / A not-overpowering engine
« on: September 05, 2011, 04:00:45 pm »
So I'm posting this game because I think it exhibits a bunch of strategic points that I've picked up from Dominion Strategy; I played this game a lot better than I would have if not for this community.

http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20110904-194846-97da7698.html

Some key points:

  • Several powerful engine cards with synergy—King's Court, Vault, Scrying Pool, plus Steward to trash what the Scrying Pools can't draw—but no source of +buy. So, tempting as it was to keep powering up my engine, once I had a couple of each of the power cards I realized there was no need for more Vaults to King's Court and just switched immediately to Provinces.
  • With an odd $7 turn after my first two Provinces, I picked up a Duchy instead of worrying that my engine was slowing down and getting another Gold or Vault; this swapped the tempo and put my opponent on the defensive while keeping me on the fair side of the Penultimate Province.
  • I was paying enough attention on turn 15 to know that the four cards left in my deck included my Gold and one Vault. So instead of getting to $8 on that turn by playing my other Vault and tampering with my deck, I got to $8 by KCing my Steward and throwing in my last two coppers, leaving my Gold and Vault where they could guarantee me a Province next turn.

These are all things I learned from Dominion Strategy, so—thanks! Any thoughts or comments? Should I have started in on Provinces as early as turn 10, or was getting the second Vault the right way to go?—i.e., did I overbuild my engine after all?

161
Puzzles and Challenges / Another What's Missing? puzzle
« on: September 03, 2011, 02:01:21 am »
I think this one is pretty easy. What one card is missing from this list?

Ambassador
Potion
Thief

Honorable mention: Masquerade.

EDIT: And now, Squire! And I guess Band of Misfits?

162
Rules Questions / Another rules quandary
« on: August 22, 2011, 11:53:33 am »
This is the opposite of the standard newbie Goons question.

What in the rules makes it clear that, when you have multiple Goons in play, you get multiple VP per buy? The card says "while this is in play, when you buy a card, +1VP". The correct interpretation is that if you have two Goons in play, the +1VP effects are cumulative. But what in the rules (other than the Goons FAQ entry, which does make this clear) rules out the non-cumulative interpretation:

"This card tells me that while it's in play, I get +1VP for buying a card. This other card also tells me that while it's in play I get +1VP for buying a card. I guess I definitely get +1VP for buying a card, then!"

I'm asking this because of the often-stated principle of Dominion that the card FAQs should be redundant; everything you  need to know how to carry out the effect of a card is on the card itself and the main rules (and expansion rules). Do the rules clear up this ambiguity? There are a couple of other cards which could be subject to the same misinterpretation—Hoard, I guess?

163
Puzzles and Challenges / What's missing?
« on: August 21, 2011, 07:05:55 am »
What one action card can be added to the following list to make it complete?

Chapel
Mint
Secret Chamber

The answer isn't Counting House, but it gets an honorable mention.

(I hope I haven't missed any.)

And we can now add: Mercenary, Prince, Procession, Spice Merchant, Stables, Taxman

164
Puzzles and Challenges / Easy trivia question
« on: July 10, 2011, 01:50:31 pm »
Here is a list of action cards. What one other action card can be added to the list to make it complete?

Library
Outpost
Secret Chamber
Tactician
Watchtower

The answer isn't Treasure Map, but it gets an honorable mention.

(I hope I haven't forgotten any.)

EDIT: And also Prince!

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