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Messages - trivialknot

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Variants and Fan Cards / Re: "Demon", the Druid of Hexes
« on: April 10, 2018, 12:18:37 am »
The rotating demon, for sure, is slow.  It's at least as slow as the veto demon, because you are effectively vetoing a hex, but now you also have think about the long-term implications of that choice.

I agree with LastFootnote that the thing to try is just two boons, opponent chooses one.  $4 for a terminal silver seems reasonable.

I think beyond Delusion and Envy, the other one you need to worry about is War.  I just tried flipping up the top two hexes and they were Delusion+War and doesn't that sound nasty?

Dominion Articles / Re: Duration Draw and Stop Card Capacity
« on: April 09, 2018, 11:19:22 am »
I read this article a while back, and my main response was, "What's so special about 100% reliability?"  I mean, reliability is great and all, and having more duration draw and fewer stop cards will certainly get you reliability.  But the difference between 70% and 90% reliability is more important than the difference between 90% and 100%.  If kicking off wins you games, then an increase of 20% will win you twice as many games as an increase in 10%.

The situation where stop card capacity seems most important is when your draw is based mostly on cantrips.  Say I have 10 peddlers and 4 stop cards, my reliability is 100%.  But if I add a single stop card, suddenly my reliability is 33%.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: "Demon", the Druid of Hexes
« on: April 09, 2018, 10:54:39 am »
Another idea is that the set-aside hexes could rotate.  Like, whenever someone plays a Demon, they discard a hex of their choice and draw a new one.  There are plenty of ways to do this, but here's one:

Rotating Demon
Action - Attack
Each other player receives a set-aside hex of their choice.  Draw and set aside a hex, and then discard a set-aside hex.
Setup: Set aside 2 hexes

I think it's more interesting without the +Buy.

There's an interesting deck you can build which is like a golden deck, but it accumulates coin tokens instead of VP tokens, and then greens all at once.  And you can still do that, if there are other sources of +Buy.  But if +Buy is limited, then there's the interesting question of when you stop accumulating coin tokens and start cashing out.  So I think it's more interesting if the availability of +Buy varies from kingdom to kingdom--ie if the +Buy comes from other cards, and not from Savings.

The first thing that jumps out to me about Shield is, you can't call it unless opponents play attacks.  So if the on-play effect is too strong, then opponents will be disincentivized from ever playing attacks, since they don't want to allow you to get Shield off your mat.  And if it's too weak, then it's basically useless when there aren't attacks.  I'm not sure where the happy medium is.

Let's Discuss ... / Re: Let's Discuss Nocturne Cards: Conclave
« on: April 03, 2018, 03:48:06 pm »
Games with Conclave as the only splitter are super neat.  Sometimes there's a particular terminal you want to play a lot of--say, Bridge--but the maximum number of times you can play it is equal to 2 plus the number of distinct non-terminal actions in the kingdom, and you can't do it very reliably.  And what if instead of Bridge, it was Bridge Troll, then you got yourself a Conclave/Duration nombo, what fun.

Other fun interactions:
Conclave/Guide, or Conclave/Ratcatcher.  You can get unlimited +action this way, but if you call reserve cards from your mat, it doesn't work that turn.
Conclave/Enchantress.  Great when your opponent has 2 identical terminals and a Conclave.
Conclave/draw-to-X.  Disappearing money is great with draw-to-X, but generally you want to play multiple copies of the draw-to-X card.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Crystal
« on: April 03, 2018, 03:22:23 pm »
Turning copper-silver-gold into triple-gold doesn't look too strong to me.  If you're drawing deck, you can also pull off T-map or Windfall, and get golds that way, and that's not considered too powerful.

Treasure Map and Windfall add Golds to your deck; this just produces money, so not sure they're comparable. Activating Treasure Map or Windfall isn't something you do every turn, nor would you want to.
Right the mechanics are different, but T-Map, Windfall, and Crystal all fill the role of "ways to quickly increase payload when you're drawing your deck and can handle lots of non-terminal stop cards".  It's not obvious to me that buying two $4-costs and having them collide once is significantly harder than buying a $6-cost and $5-cost, and then having them collide with silver and copper every single turn.

Anyways, I feel like the cost of Crystal hardly matters, since most of the cost is in supporting it.  It could cost $2, and you still wouldn't spam it.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Crystal
« on: April 03, 2018, 01:57:40 pm »
Turning copper-silver-gold into triple-gold doesn't look too strong to me.  If you're drawing deck, you can also pull off T-map or Windfall, and get golds that way, and that's not considered too powerful.

So Ascension is a lot more skinflint about card draw - it's still possible in Mythos to draw your entire deck, though not quite as easy as with Dominion, I've found.  It's not too difficult to get a deck that can get both Mortals and Monsters, though a few players have found that going for Phalanxes (and thus Monsters) first seems to work pretty well, particularly in games with an Adversary where you want to get through the Minion pile quickly.
It's hard to believe you can draw your deck with the cards shown.  The only net draw card here seems to be Sphinx.  Are there more?  Or are you just drawing your deck by trashing stop cards and adding cantrips?

Looks pretty neat, although very hard to evaluate just by looking at it.  For a standard 2P game you'd have to play with 6 mortals, 6 monsters, and 5 gods, in addition to the 6 base cards, the 3 fate cards, and 4 basic abilities in the Agora.  That's almost double the amount you'd need to keep track of in a base Dominion game.

I just glanced at your old post, and it seems that one thing you changed is that you used to have limited Action and Buy supplies.  I think it makes sense to get rid of them, since you already have 4 resource types.  Although, my experience with Ascension tells me that if you have two resources used for spending, the problem is that you often want to commit to one or the other; having a mixed deck often means that you can't hit any of the price points.  Contrast with the limited action supply, which encourages mixing of terminals, non-terminals, and splitters, or with the limited buy supply, which encourages mixing money and +buy.  Anyways, I'm sure this aspect of the game is already solidified, but those are my initial thoughts.  I like that you can save faith and blood tokens.

I'm wondering what the BM-equivalent strategy would be, it seems nontrivial.  Maybe you just buy all the Gold & Phalanxes you can, and then at a certain moment switch to Offerings & Priests?  Or maybe you buy a few Priests, and then build up your Phalanxes while collecting faith? 

Let's Discuss ... / Re: Let's Discuss Nocturne Cards: Tragic Hero
« on: March 30, 2018, 06:30:00 pm »
Pixie's trashing is optional, so it makes sense for it to have an "if you do" clause.

I played a game where Necromancer triggered Pixie (because we initially misread the rules).  It was really strong, but it was fine.

Agree with Awaclus that it's worth buying Cemetery even if you're trashing only two junk cards.  It's like buying a Lab for $4, or buying an Island that gets played immediately.

I often regret getting a Ghost through Haunted Mirror.  It's best when you weren't going to play that action card you discarded anyway.

Let's Discuss ... / Re: Let's Discuss Nocturne Cards: Tragic Hero
« on: March 29, 2018, 03:06:17 pm »
When Tragic Hero triggers, you trash it and gain a treasure, but gaining a treasure is not contingent on trashing.  In other words, the hero didn't need to die!  It truly is a tragedy.

Dominion Articles / Re: Castles
« on: March 28, 2018, 12:09:25 pm »
I like and mostly agree with this article.

I agree that Castles should be treated as another pile of provinces, and the most important implication is that you need to build more.  When there are 16 Victory cards to distribute before the end of the game (even if some of them have utility), you want a deck that can handle lots of green.  This can be true even when you don't buy a single Castle, because if your strategy is too short-sighted, your opponent can always extend the game by choosing to ignore Provinces and go for Castles.  There are some exceptions, like when it's easy to drain Provinces, or when the game ends on piles.

In 2P, there's a rough rule of thumb for the VP value of each castle: 4.5, 3.5, 3.5, 3.5, 4.5, 8.5, 6.5+x, 7.5

The way you calculate the value of a Castle in 2P is by looking at the size of the VP swing.  For example, the Haunted Castle is a 4 VP swing by itself, plus an additional 3 VP if players have Humble and King's (regardless of which player actually has them).  That's a 7 VP swing, so it's a bit like Haunted Castle is worth 3.5 VP.  Generally two of the castles get trashed (Crumbling and Small), which means that Humble is a 9 VP swing and King's is a 15 VP swing, which is why I place their values at 4.5 and 7.5.  Obviously the rule of thumb ignores a bunch of wrinkles, like if a different number of castles get trashed, or if King's Castle doesn't get bought.  And the player with no castles would rather end the game than get King's castle, etc. etc.

Dominion Articles / Re: How to be good at Dominion
« on: March 27, 2018, 12:40:13 am »
I don't understand what you mean.
What I meant is I'm dropping the argument, because it feels a bit silly to get into it, and I just don't care.  You can continue the argument with someone else who cares more.

Dominion Articles / Re: How to be good at Dominion
« on: March 27, 2018, 12:11:42 am »
I came up with an absurd example thinking, "there's no way Seprix would agree to something so absurd", but here we are, I've learned something new.  And I'm happy with this, because learning is more important than winning, at least when it comes to arguments about chopping onions.

Dominion Articles / Re: How to be good at Dominion
« on: March 26, 2018, 10:20:44 pm »
Always keep in mind that winning is more important than having fun, and learning is more important than winning (unless itís an important tournament match, in which case winning takes precedence).
This is of course ignoring the fact that winning is fun, but that's semantics. People complain about this statement, but they must have forgotten they are reading an "article" about How To Get Good At Dominion. Yeah, fun takes a back seat. Getting good takes work.
I mean, if I read an article titled "How to chop an onion", I would not expect the article to adopt the point of view that chopping onions is more important than having fun.  Sure, I'm reading the article because I want to chop an onion, but the rest doesn't follow.

Dominion Articles / Re: How to be good at Dominion
« on: March 26, 2018, 04:20:03 pm »
The problem is that the relative importance of winning vs fun is not really something you can argue.  Either the reader disagrees or agrees, and nothing you can say will change their mind or help them think about it more clearly.

In contrast, saying learning is more important than winning is something you can argue, because learning will win you more games in the long run.  I'm not sure this is a sufficiently deep point to justify an article though.

Of course, the strategy blog seems to like publishing very short articles that make only a few points, so it's not surprising that people (including me) try to write articles in that style.

Philosopher's Stone is best in large decks that don't draw themselves.  I feel like this change makes it good in the opposite situations, and that changes the core concept of the card.

A few comments on organization...

You should start with the simplest example of an infinite loop in Dominion.  Not everyone follows the Puzzles & Challenges forum.

For the Pokemon card section, I feel like the point gets lost in all the comments about well-ordering, cartesian products, and lexicographical ordering, and I say that as somebody who already knew what those things were to begin with.  I would lead with all the examples (Pokemon, followed by Pokemon+MGT, followed by Pokemon+MGT+YuGiOh), and appeal to intuition as to why these processes are finite.  Then you can introduce the math, which can be a segue to the applications to Dominion.

As for the analysis itself, my question is, why does every infinite loop involve either KC or Crown+Mandarin?  Or at least, I think every loop has that requirement, maybe I am unaware of the exceptions.

Dominion General Discussion / Re: Surplus
« on: March 17, 2018, 03:49:27 pm »
Sauna/avanto is one that everybody skips a key factor of. They have an avanto but no sauna and then they can't play any more actions.
Really? My experience of online games with this pile is that they tend to end up in mirror matches where both players get at least two copies of each.

I's pretty clear this dude is trolling at this point, right?
Chase Adolphson is just very young.  Be nice, etc. etc.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Addressing the first player advantage
« on: March 14, 2018, 11:08:24 pm »
The Star Realms method of mitigating 1st player advantage is to have them draw fewer cards at start of game.  Maybe if the first player only draws 4 cards on the first turn, possibly the second turn.  And maybe fix which cards miss the first shuffle.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Addressing the first player advantage
« on: March 14, 2018, 10:55:25 pm »
I think the best game-theoretic way to do it is bidding.  Bidding is an auto-balancing mechanic, because however much it's worth to go first in a given kingdom, that's how much you should bid if you're playing optimally.

Probably the best thing to bid with is VP.  So if I win with a bid of 4 VP, then I go first, and you start with 4 VP tokens.

There are several kinds of auctions you could use to determine the bids, but it probably doesn't matter so I'd just go with an English auction.

ETA: yeah I guess this was already suggested in the OP.

It's okay to introduce new cards very slowly, over the course of many years.  After all, that's what most of us did, if we bought the expansions as they were released.

I'm not really sure how using heirlooms and split piles as full kingdom piles really addresses the problem.  But sure, you could do that.  Most of them are probably fine.  I agree with popsofctown's comments.

Dominion Articles / Re: Salt the Earth and global effects
« on: March 12, 2018, 08:11:50 pm »
Thanks for the reply Seprix.

By "global effect" I had something slightly more specific in mind.  I was thinking of effects that are specifically useful in non-mirror games.  Lowering provinces when your opponent goes for Duchy/Duke is a good example.  If you have more gains than your opponent, lowering piles to the point where you can end the game next turn is a good example.  But PPR and pile control (generically speaking) are not examples of what I'm thinking about.

This is something I think about because I mostly play casual games IRL with my partner, but I also watch competitive games.  And I notice that competitive players tend to underrate global effects.  e.g. I watch games where people incidentally pick up Embargo, but since they think of the embargo token as irrelevant they just waffle until finally embargoing copper.  Whereas in the games I have played, Embargo is occasionally dominant.  I think it's because we usually don't play mirror games, while the competitive players do.

One specific tip I would give about Embargo: please at least consider embargoing Province.  It's likely to have a significant impact on the game, which means it's a good deal for at least one of the players.

I'm not trying to be combative or defensive; I've written plenty of stuff and know they can't all be winners.

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