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26
2 other topics before I forget,

1.) In the next qualifier, I can have players start with the same split.  Half the boards can start with 5/2 and the other half can start with 4/3.  Each round those same boards will alternate.  This should solve the problem with splits.  Everyone will start with the same split at your table but you won't know which one you will get from round to round.

Do you guys like that idea or do you still like random draw???  I guess I wanna know if random draw is really that bad.  The problem seems to be with everyone starting with the same split then all players seem to buy the same cards the first round.  I'm kinda mixed on the idea.  Talk to me.

2.) As far as who goes first- SE can be seeded this way as I think higher seed should start first- though random card draw is so much easier on me.  For Pre-lims a random draw before the game starts makes sense or paper, rock , scissors or dice.

I guess I should really wait to see how the Nationals and Worlds shake out and ask Donald X these questions myself along with maybe some top players.

27
Yeah I probably use the small expansions (Cornucopia, Alchemy, Guilds, Promos) for the Single Elimination rounds- just to mix some cards from those sets in.  Of course the big expansion sets will be mixed in also.  Thanks for the card suggestions and combo awareness guys- I'll take note of those and research more.

Pre-lims will be mixtures of 2 sets (Dominion, Intrigue, Seaside, Prosperity, Hinterlands and Dark Ages)- just the large expansions here.  I don't know, maybe I'll add the small expansion here too- we'll see, I might change my mind.

Yes, we may do a fall qualifier in Oct-Nov this year (for 2013 US Nationals)- have to wait til I hear something from Jay after GenCon though.  If we do UCon would be the ideal place- in Ann Arbor at UofM.

BTW- IF I DON'T HAVE YOUR EMAIL PLEASE SEND IT TO ME- trying to gather the rest of the emails- I got most of them.

28
Other Games / Re: What other games are as good as Dominion?
« on: June 26, 2012, 01:29:46 am »
Just played 7Wonders over the weekend.  This game is definitely as good as Dominion.  Fast, easy to play and complex at the same time. 

Shadows over Camelot is great also for cooperative game- anybody will seem to play it and it gives a great experience.

I think the trend in boardgames is for more fast games like Dominion that still add some complexity with expansions and such.  Games that take over 90min are tedious to most, though I like a long wargame like Axis and Allies or War of the Ring 3-4 times a year.  Catan is a tweener- still can play it in around 60-90min.  Games like Puerto Rico, Agricola and Le Harve are just too long though simplier types of these games are being made now.

29
Also, do you guys have a burning desire to include Alchemy???

With Dark Ages coming out, I will probably use only the "big" expansions for pre-lims and then for SE rounds mix in some Promo cards, Cornucopia and Guilds (if its out by then) with the those sets.

Alchemy doesn't seem to mix well with the other sets and the expansion itself in not very popular.  What do you think???

30
If you want a minimum of 1 you can do:

4-player:
12
9
6
3

3-player
12
8
4

Ed

yeah, I was thinking the same thing.  In either case, this will be the new pre-lim point system for next year.

31
Thoughts on Tournaments:

This is a series of thoughts on how I would run a tournament now after going through this last one:
1-   The prelim rounds were great. There are a lot of people who want to play in these tournaments who are not experienced. Itís a great chance for them to play. It also means that the quality of play is not going to be great in prelims, meaning experienced players should be able to take 1st or 2nd in most of their games.

2-   Because of (1) I think evaluating on wins makes sense. I would use 2nd place finishes for tie breakers
      a.   I would definitely seed everyone at the end of the prelims and use that for seating in finals. I would also use that seating for turn order in finals too. Something like this (first listed plays first, second second, etc.):
               i.   Table 1: 1, 8, 9, 16
               ii.   Table 2: 2, 7, 10, 15
               iii.   Table 3: 3, 6, 11, 14
               iv.   Table 4: 4, 5, 12, 13
      b.   This gives a good edge to the top four from the prelims on the match that really matters. It means you want to play well even after youíve won your first two games in prelims.

3-   The movement around the table worked well, but it did mean that doing well (but not perfect) gave you a chance to end up playing the same kingdom more than once Ė two 2nds and a win put you back at the table you started at. This happened to GoBlue. I think itís worth thinking of a better way to do this to ensure that doesnít happen. Maybe it means seeding after each round. Top ľ of players assigned to kingdoms they have not played. Then next ľ do the same thing (trying to pair the weakest 2nd quartile with the strongest 1st quartile). Etc.
      a.   Second problem with this method is that if you come 1st/2nd and another player comes 2nd/1st you end up playing each other in your third game (also happened to GoBlue and 2oGB)

4-   I think every set would be hand-picked. It should be designed so that there are multiple paths to victory Ė no IGG rush, no Workshop/Gardens Ė and such that big money is not the best play. In this tournament I think Set E is a great example. I never got to play it in the tournament, but Iím still not sure how to play it Ė do you use Ambassadors to shrink your deck and then create triple Tactician turns using Lighthouse, Fishing Village and Outpost? Do you go with a simple Warehouse->Treasure Map? Or maybe itís Ambassador->Treasure Map->Salvager (kill Golds and pick up Provinces). Maybe you donít need the Ambassador at all? How does it change if other people are going Ambassador? If no one goes Ambassador, should you? Just so you can gum up attempts by others to connect Treasure Maps? GoBlue and I practiced a 2p game with this set in the morning before the tournament. He went Warehouse-Treasure Map. I built the Tactician Engine. He won by one point (after I emptied the curse pile on him). I think the answer is inconclusive. Thatís what a good tournament kingdom should be.

5-   Tournament Kingdoms should be designed to limit the later-player disadvantages. Techniques from #4 will help (no rushes helps, as does multiple strategies Ė especially rock-paper-scissor strategies), but Iíll bet more could be done by thinking about it

6-   Iím going to go further to suggest two more Ďhouse rulesí to make the starting order less terrible when you have a limited number of games to play:
      a.   You are allowed to see you first hand and re-shuffle as many times as you are player order (i.e., first player gets stuck with it, second player is allowed one re-shuffle, third player 3 reshuffles, fourth player four reshuffles. Maybe fourth player just chooses his first two hands?). This limits the danger that Player one gets a 5/2 on a Trading Post board and no one else does. Game Over. I even thought about going so far as to have P2 dictate Player Oneís initial hand, but that might be overkill
      b.   On a tie, the player with the worst starting order wins. I actually think this should be a standard rule. I took a look at my Council Room stats. If every time I was Second Player my tie counted as a win, and every time I was First Player my tie counted as a loss, I would STILL have a better record as first player. And this eliminated ties completely from the game. Iím curious what Donald would think of this.

7-   I think Iíve come to piece with single elimination finals. I think with the kingdom design followed above and the two ďHouse RulesĒ, Ďbig stakesí elimination games can be very exciting and even fun for spectators to watch. It makes Dominion more like the SuperBowl (ďAny given Sunday anyone can winĒ) and less like the World Series. There is something to be said when every game is ďGame 7Ē.


I hope you enjoyed the commentary. I hope Atariman, Shark Bait, Robz, GoBlue and others who were there can add some additional color.
Looking forward to my next tournament.

Ed

Ed, great thread and commentary- very helpful read indeed!!!

First off- on the sets, yes those sets were purposely chosen.  Workshop/Gardens I through in there (pre-lim) to make some separation between the average and better players.  Remember, I'm an educator so I want to assess what players know and don't know.  Separates the "A" students from the "B" so to speak.  So you either knew it or you didn't.  However, considering the nature of the combo, probably won't see those cards again- at least not together.

The finals- yes it was an ugly set- done on the randomizer.  I could have re-randomized it to get a smoother set but decided to go with it.  I think its important at the SE round level to be prepared for anything, not every set is going to be like candy, sometimes players will have to grind their way through.  I think it develops some mental toughness.  At the same time, its important to have most of the sets be smooth sailing with various avenues of play.  As I learn more and more on this site and throughout my own play, it will help devolop better sets for tourny play.  Dominiondeck.com can help greatly in this area also.

Comments on your points:

1. Yes I agree- the 5-round pre-lim+ 2 round SE play will remain for next year.

2. Seeding in the Single Elimination rounds will remain also.  However, the scoring will change for pre-lims to this:

From the online tourny:

4player games:

6pts for 1st
4pts for 2nd
2pts for 3rd
0pts for 4th

3player games:

6pts for 1st
3pts for 2nd
0pts for 4th

This still emphasizes "wins" but at the same time gives consistent 2nd and 3rd place finishers a strong chance to enter single elimination.  I think this system truly and fairly represents the strength of each player better.  These new "tournament point" totals will determine who goes to SE rounds.  The top 12-20 will advance (depending on attendance).

I like this system a lot better and I think others will too.

3. The rotation works much better when there are more people.  Its also simple for the GM to use.  This is one of the reasons I will press to get even more people to the tournament next year with you guys' help also.  The magic number is 13 different tables or 39 people.  So if we can get around 40 people then there will be a 100% guarantee that no repeating tables will happen.

4. Thank you.  This is the area where I learned the most and the area where I will work hardest to improve.  Although, everyone seemed to enjoy the sets, I will mix at least 2 sets for all pre-lim games next year.  Also, I will avoid certain combos and/or include better ones.  This is where Dominion can be a real art form- making great sets with lots of intriguing play (no pun intended).

5. Good point

6. Starting play order is an area that I really need to talk to Jay and Donald X about.  In SE rounds I think the higher seeded player should go first.  In pre-lims- rolling dice or random card draw is fine I think.  This is a topic that will be debated and discussed in the coming months.  By next year, there should be a better solution.

7. Yes the 5 round pre-lims and 2 round SE rounds will stay.  Good mix of "regular season" and "playoff season".  This is how the Nationals and World are run every year.  IMO if you are not going to have some rounds of SE then why have a tournament???  The high risk/reward element of SE is always fun to watch and/or be a part of.


32
Also, for next year I plan on doing the 5-round pre-lims differently.  I will use a "tournament point" system.  It will go like this: 

1st place= 5pts (includes extra bonus point for the win)
2nd place= 3pts
3rd place= 2pts
4th place= 1pts

Highest pts. (top half) will advance to Single Elimination rounds.  I think this will be much better for all.

Just saw this on the homepage here for the online tourny:

For a four-player game:
 
6 points for the winner
4 points for second place
2 points for third place
0 points for fourth place
 
For a three-player game:
 
6 points for the winner
3 points for second place
0 points for third place
 
Ties will be broken in favor of most wins, then a playoff.


I like this a lot.  This is a more refined "tournament point" system than mine.  I will probably use this next year.  I would change the last players points to "1" instead of "0" for psychological reasons.  It would suck to end the day with "0" in my opinion. 

The only thing I don't like about the online tourny is the 4-pod/4games idea.  Playing the same people for 4 rounds is not really fun for players.  Don't know why they did this.  Simplicity I suppose.

The 0 is important because it leads to the same expected value overall.  If you want to change it to 1, you have to adjust all the other values too.


That does make sense with the nice ratios and all.  Alright "0" it is then.

33

All of the other sets I played were fantastic but the few sets that were like that were a little dull to play.  To add my thoughts, imo the base game itself isn't very complex.  Games get more and more interesting as all of the expansions are mixed together.  It would be fun if for future preliminary rounds, the kingdoms could have more representation from different sets (I think all the kingdoms had 10 cards from a single expansion).
Most definitely. Mix up the sets!!!


Yes this will happen next year.  As in the Nationals and Worlds, there will be 2-3 set mixtures for the pre-lims also. :)


34
Robz888 was on track to win the tournament, but was lynched by a vote of his fellow players in the final round.

Gar! In all seriousness I was super closing to winning--well Ed was closer, fine--and man did I blow it on that last board, the Priate Ship one. I'll write up my (very positive) thoughts about the tournament soon.

I was going to "seed" that final by record to see who went first, but when I got to the table you guys had all agreed to draw cards so I left it alone.  Next year for Single Elimination rounds- starting player will go by seed from top to bottom.

All the Semi-finals and Finals were very close- loved that. :)

35
Also, for next year I plan on doing the 5-round pre-lims differently.  I will use a "tournament point" system.  It will go like this: 

1st place= 5pts (includes extra bonus point for the win)
2nd place= 3pts
3rd place= 2pts
4th place= 1pts

Highest pts. (top half) will advance to Single Elimination rounds.  I think this will be much better for all.

Just saw this on the homepage here for the online tourny:

For a four-player game:
 
6 points for the winner
4 points for second place
2 points for third place
0 points for fourth place
 
For a three-player game:
 
6 points for the winner
3 points for second place
0 points for third place
 
Ties will be broken in favor of most wins, then a playoff.


I like this a lot.  This is a more refined "tournament point" system than mine.  I will probably use this next year.  I would change the last players points to "1" instead of "0" for psychological reasons.  It would suck to end the day with "0" in my opinion. 

The only thing I don't like about the online tourny is the 4-pod/4games idea.  Playing the same people for 4 rounds is not really fun for players.  Don't know why they did this.  Simplicity I suppose.

36
I agree sharky.  This will be changed next year.  All Pre-lim sets will involve at least 2 sets.

Yes, I put the Workshop/Gardens set in there as a test and get feedback.  Your opinion was the general consensus.  Other than this combo, what other combos are troublesome???

Also, for next year I plan on doing the 5-round pre-lims differently.  I will use a "tournament point" system.  It will go like this: 

1st place= 5pts (includes extra bonus point for the win)
2nd place= 3pts
3rd place= 2pts
4th place= 1pts

Highest pts. (top half) will advance to Single Elimination rounds.  I think this will be much better for all.

37
Tournament went great.  Everyone seemed very pleased and most importantly all had a great time.
Some tidbits...

22 players in all- not bad for the first qualifier
We had a few players fly in from Seattle and Arizona- in hindsight, I will give 2-4 special prizes out for players who fly in from far distances.

Format- 5 rounds for everyone.  Players try to get as many wins as possible.  Half of the players- 11 would make it to Single-Elimination rounds.  The problem I had with 11 players is that I wanted 4 games for the semi-finals, getting a winner each and make a 4-player final.  With 4 games in the semis I would have a 3-3-3-2 type games and I could not have a 2 player game.  So I need to add another player.  There were a couple of 1 win players that probably wouldn't have gotten in if we would have had a few more players in the tournament.  Coincidently, one of the 1-win players made it to the finals and won the whole thing.

In his defense, I've watched the player play once before and he is a very dedicated player.  In fact, he only won 1 game in pre-lims but I believe he had 2 or 3 second place finishes.  So his win record really wasn't reflective of his ability.  So in a sense, it didn't surprise me that he won- though he really had to fight for it in the semis and finals- which were both very very close games.  All the players seemed fine with his play and enjoyed the Single Elimination rounds.

We will definitely press to get more players in.  My desire is to get at least 32 players so that we don't have these issues.  The more players you have these issues tend to statistically fizzle away. 

This definitely makes me think about a way to incorporate 2nd and 3rd places finishes in games, however VPoints cannot be used b/c of the high ceiling for points in a game like for Prosperity.  I think I could establish a "tournament point" system that is simple enough to use.  However, this would undermine the priority of a "straight-up wins" approach which is the current system in the Nationals and the Worlds.  In those tournaments, second place means nothing.  Its high-risk, high reward.  That system still gives the underdog a chance as all they need focus on is getting a couple wins.  In either case though, once you get to single-elimination rounds its win or go home.

As I looked at our tournament, the people that made it to Single Elimination rounds deserved to be there for the most part.  The benefit of playing 5 rounds as opposed to 3 or 4 is that the better players WILL rise to the top and gain more wins.  I think the current format we have is a great balance of a good taste of the cut-throat competition that one would taste in the Nationals and Worlds yet still gives people a chance to make it to Single Elimination rounds.

Playing devil's advocate, one could say that even though our tournment copys that of the National and Worlds, in the end only ONE person will go there so why should we feel the need to copy their format- let the winner deal with the cut-throat competition of the Nationals and Worlds when they get there.  This is a great argument, which makes me seriously consider a simple "tournament point" system format that rewards people who get few wins but several 2nd place finishes.  I definitely think there can be tweeks and room for improvement to add this kind of system in place.

There is also the possiblity to have 2 days of 4 rounds each, giving players the ability to give it a shot a second time if the first day goes bad for them.  Though that may water down the attendence as some players will qualify the first day and not play the second day possibly.  If our attendance gets past 40 I think I will consider this.

BTW- Time frame- 40min seemed about right.  We finished early at least 3 out of the first 5 rounds with mostly 3 player games so that means with 4 player games 40 minutes rounds is solid.  Most games finished between 20-40 min.

People also seemed to enjoy the sets a lot.  The Pre-lim sets were pre-chosen and everyone had access to these sets on the web/flyer.  The Single Elimination sets were randomized at the tournament- there were a couple of times where we randomized a couple of times until we knew a good sets would show up and seem to get some good play.  We did leave a set that had Seaside and Intrigue with Sabatour and Witch with no blue cards.  We purposely did that to throw a wrench in there.  I think you always gotta throw in a set that challenges players in different ways it can't always be candy- we only did that in Single-Elimination though where there was a little more time.

Also, I guess there is current debate about players who start first in a 3-4 player game having an advantage.  Until we get more clarification on this from the top dawgs of the game and Donald X, I simply tell players if one person has an issue with it, do a random draw for players to go first or roll a die or good ol' "paper, rock, scissors"- that seems to solve it. 

For those that went or not, what do you think???  I want to get some good feedback while it fresh in our minds. :)
For those that came thanks for your great sportmanship and support.

Shiloh
"The Questioneer"

38
Plenty of room for everyone if you are in the area- just show up- we have 25-30 players.  See you tomorrow!!! :)

BTW- I also am a lefty and I will be wearing something cool- don't know what yet.

39
Just a little note.  My sbcglobal email account got hacked so it doesn't work.  Please use the gmail account on the flyer instead- shilohc888@gmail.com.  With 10 days left or so, its very safe to say that there is room for everyone.  We have 25 or so signed up so far.  We will have room for 64 just in case but that's not probable.  So if you didn't register just show up with your entry fees and we'll get you in.  See you at the tourny!!! ;D

40
Hello all,
 
Hope everyone had a relaxing Memorial Day weekend,
 
I just wanted to give everyone an update.  All is going well as far as preparations.  There are about 21-22 people signed up so far.  I would like to have at least 32, so if you have any friends that are interested in playing forward this info.
 
I attached the 3pg flyer and info/registration sheet again.  Feel free to print this off and copy for friends and/or players who may be interested. 
 
We will have room for up to 64 players if needed.  I don't see us getting to that number but you never know.  With 20 registered and maybe a few game day registrations we should hit the 32 mark.  If you plan on coming but haven't registered please do so- this helps with planning and raffling prizes and such.  Don't forget the winner will have an expense paid trip to Chicago in July at the US Finals.
 
You can email me for questions and such but most everything you'll need is on the attached document.  Come early- at least 11:30am- we will start at noon.  Should be a great time.  See ya then!!!
 
PS- new official Dominion online play to open soon:
http://playdominion.com/
 
PS2- new expansion coming in August, looks like a good one and the extra base card set:
http://www.dicetowernews.com/dominion-dark-ages/
http://www.dicetowernews.com/dominion-base-cards-coming-soon/
 
Shiloh Christie
Dominion Tourny GM


41
Other Games / Re: What other games are as good as Dominion?
« on: May 16, 2012, 12:28:22 pm »
If anyone is interested in buying a mint, brand new 10th Anniversary Puerto Rico ($70) or a mint, brand new Risk Legacy ($50) PM me.  Thanks


42
Update- Got about 20 signed up so far.  Our goal is to get at least 32players, however, we have room for 64.

Registration has slowed down a bit but I'm sure it will pick up as we get closer to the date.  Still plenty of room! :)

43
Other Games / Re: What other games are as good as Dominion?
« on: April 15, 2012, 07:50:01 pm »
What other games are as good as Dominion???

Honestly, not to be a homer, but none IMHO.

Reasons:

Fast, Easy to learn yet hard to Master, even non-gamers play it and get addicted. 

I have not seen a game that tops this.  Sure Catan, Puerto Rico, Railway games, Deep strategy or Euro Games are great but the impact Dominion has is unmatched.  It will go down as a classic like Risk, Monopoly and Catan.

44
Other Games / Re: What other games do you enjoy playing?
« on: April 15, 2012, 07:33:46 pm »
My favorites:

Boardgames:

Dominion (any version)
Axis and Allies Global 1940
Catan (any version)
Railways of the World (any map)
Risk (any version)
Ikusa
Warlords of Europe
War of the Ring
Puerto Rico
Monopoly
Revolution!
Poker
Chess
Xiangqi (Chinese Chess)
Shogi (Japanese Chess)
Backgammon

Video Game: Nothing except for Madden if I get the chance.

45
That sounds good.

Although I agree that technically VP as a tiebreaker is worse than a coin flip, perception matters as well.

Just sent the new flyer to you guys and everyone else your registered and metrogamers- the ones holding the con.  Please put the new one up ASAP.  Thanks- sorry for the inconvience.  Everything should be all set now- ready to rock!

This is gonna be awesome tourny- I wish I could play in it!!! ;D

46
Whatt!! how did I not know about this? hope theres still spots open ;D

There is but don't waste time- I'm getting 1-2 registrations a day now. :)

47
Yeah, I think you are right Wanderer, and I see the reasons clearly now.  This is why Jay and Donald X don't do this at the US Finals and Worlds.

After some brainstorming, I have a way to make everyone happy.  We will do just straight up wins and ranking by win totals.  If there are any ties in individual games both will be credited for the win.  If there is a tie in for SE round placement or advancemnt then both will advance.  I can make this work.  I can split some games into 3 player games if I need to which is what they do at the US Finals and Worlds.  No coin flips and all ties get wins and advancement.  There- that was simple.  I'll change that on the flyer today or tommorrow.  Thanks for your help on this.

Sound good???  I think that will work and everyone will be happy.  Especially me b/c that's one less thing to keep track of.

48
Ah...I see- good feedback.

1. If you are playing a Goons type game and you are ahead and can end the game, but you want to rack up VPoints, then by all means do what you like.  IMHO you deserve to do this if you are in the lead.

2. However, with the time limit, you have convinced me to keep this a strict 40min limit.  I will give a 5min warning at the 35min mark and YES when time is up you must complete a round (all players have the same number of turns).

3. This is probably why they didn't use Victory Point as tie-breakers in the US Finals and the Worlds.  But would you like to do what they did for tie-breakers and flip a coin???  Which is worse???  Pick your poison.  It doen't matter to me- I'm flexible either way.  Eliminating the VPoint tie-breaker is easier for me.  We can just do Total Wins and I'll just bring a coin for the tie-breakers ;)  If people lose ties by a coin flip then people won't be happy either.   What do you guys think???

49
Uploaded the flyer in the first post.  I hope you don't mind, but I removed the Dominion picture from the flyer.  It made the file 18KB instead of 2000+KB.

(I also fixed your avatar.)

A couple of suggestions:

* Using Total Victory Points leads to some bad incentives, for a lot of reasons.  What about just pure ranks, i.e., 1, 2, 3, 4?
* The flyer lists all the potential sets that may be used in the tournament.  This seems like something that the forum could easily work through to determine the optimal strategy...

1. Thanks for the avatar fix and yes that's OK for cutting out the pic on the flyer- no needed of course.

2. As for the Total Victory Points- that is only a tie breaker if needed.  Which I don't see happening.  Advancment WILL be by rank first.  That rank is determined by Total Wins- if needed to break any ties in the ranking then Total Victory Points will be used.  For example, after 5 rounds of pre-lims with 32 players, the top 16 will advance to SE rounds.  If there is a tie for the 16th placement then we will determine who goes by Total Victory Points.

As far as individual games played in the Pre-lims, if in a 3 or 4 players game if there is a tie- both players will get credited for the win.  In SE rounds though- this can't happan so again we will have to go back to a Total Victory Points count to determine who advances.  So as you can see this will rarely happen, if at all.

I'm sorry this wasn't clear enough in the flyer.  Does it sound unclear to anyone else??  If it is, I'll go change it.  If you are registered, I will have your e-mail and you will get the updated flyer directly. 

BTW this system is almost what they use for the US Finals and Worlds, so I wanted to keep in line with what they do.  I say almost b/c they don't use the Vicotry Point tie-breaker.  I asked Jay what they used for ties in order to advance in single-elimination rounds in the US Finals and Worlds.  He said they flip a coin!!!  Ouch!!!  That's rough, that's why I put the Victory Point tie-breaker in for our tournament- softens the blow a bit.

3. The sets being used for the Pre-lims were determined based on how many games I received from RioGrande to use.  I wish I could do well-mixed sets (from 3 or more expansions), but because of the limited games we have (4 Base, 4 Intrigue, 1 Seaside, 1 Prosperity, 1 Hinterlands, 1 Cornucopia), we can't do that.  If we get more than 64players then I will have to ask RioGrandeGames for more game. 

4. There are 2 or 3 of the listed sets that I am concerned about that might take longer to play- past the 40-45min time limits (I can be flexible 5 extra min here if the game if close to being done.)  If I have to cut it off then I will need to use Victory Points when time is up to detemine winner(s) for those games.

5. As far as the forum working through these sets for the optimal strategy, what would be wrong with that if everyone has access to the same forum, which I am now telling others about???  All players are free to practice these sets as many times as possible.  Use the forums, whatever.  Everyone is on the same footing either way.  Also, I would think that this would make rounds faster, which is more desirable for all I think.  However, only 1/2 of the players will make it to the SE rounds.  At that point, sets will be randomized via a randomizer.  Promos may be used and you may see 3-5 expansions in each randomization b/c by reducing the number of players in SE, we will have the ability to use all the left-over expansions to make more diverse sets at that time.

What do you guys think about these issues???  I put out the announcement for this tourny early for a reason- so that we can iron out any glitches, this being our first major Dominion tourny in the area.

50
Wow.  I'm also in the Detroit area.  I own the entire game and would love to get a local group going; my Magic friends aren't all that keen on the game as I am.

Yeah Magic isn't my thing.  Me, my wife and our friends always played Catan until we tried Dominion a year ago. 

Since then we have taught dozens of our friends to play- they instantly get hooked.  Nobody has rejected it yet.  For us, it has replace Catan.

I think what makes this game great is that non-gamers want to play it and find it addictive, as I have experienced when showing the game to others.

Easy to learn, yet hard to master = instant classic

For those interested I'm a big "Axis and Allies Global 1940" boardgamer as well.  You can find me on www.axisandallies.org/forums by the same user name.  I'm also an educator-math, chess coach and avid backgammon player.  Other games I like: Risk, Ikusa, Railways of the World and all Catan versions.  My favorite of course by far is Dominion.

Very cool forum...now I know where I can sharpen up my game. ;)

Razz...PM where you live, maybe I can hook you up with our group.

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