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Author Topic: Dominion: Gunpowder  (Read 34901 times)

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enfynet

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #25 on: July 03, 2014, 11:11:18 am »
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Maybe I'm alone, but the proposed idea to "replace Alchemy" seems much worse than "inspired by Alchemy"...

I really think these cards need to be tested two or three at a time among other Dominion cards. Even test them up against Alchemy cards. What I might suggest, is make "Gunpowder" a Minion variant that provides the new currency, or attacks other players.
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #26 on: July 03, 2014, 01:11:55 pm »
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Oh, okay. So you guys are hardcore into Dominion. Now I get a little better where you are coming from. I thought you were being a tad nonchalant about some things (trashing, preventing attacks), but I get that you were from a Big Picture perspective about Dominion that I don't quite have. I enjoy Dominion a lot, but it is just one of many games I like. And creating one page games (in this case a variant expansion of a game already made) is a hobby of mine. Remind me to avoid playing you at Goko! lol Seriously, though, I feel really lucky and honored that such experienced Dominion players took the time to offer feedback for this variant expansion. Thanks so much. And I'd gladly play any of you at Goko. I've only broken 5000 before in pro points, but i'm real low now (like 4300) cuz it crashed on me so many times that i stopped taking it seriously for a few days and just played to try out different decks.

Anyway, no wonder your suggestions have been so helpful and on the money. I got a chance to think about a lot of them and here's the changes I made to Dominion Gunpowder...

Gunpowder... Changed it from a cost of 3 Coin to a cost of 2 Coin. Makes it more affordable and also lowers the overall cost of Gunpowder cost cards. Bomb is therefore worth 3 Coin overall, making it equal in cost to Hermit as well as a cheaper version of Island. Soldier is now worth 4 coin overall. And so on with the rest of the Gunpowder cost cards.

General... The reworking I did of General last night didn't really work. Without Attack cards in the Supply, he was quite useless, and with them in the Supply, he still wasn't all that great. So what I did was go back to the original idea for General being a Vineyard variant, only I upped the VP reward to reflect that the General condition is even harder to fulfill than Vineyard's. So now General gives 2 VP for every 3 Attack cards in your deck (rounded down), and if there are no Attack cards in your deck, General gives 2 VP for every 3 identically named Action cards in your deck. That makes him a lot more formidable, at least as formidable as a Vineyard variant can be.

Reserves/Garrison/Factory... I ended up thinking about these a lot because it seemed that there was a lot of variety in what various critics and myself were likening these cards to. The more I thought about it, they seemed like Hamlet variants more than any other card. Only I couldn't lower their cost to 2, because that would make them immune to cards that trash other players' cards worth 3 to 6 Coin, a mechanic that is key to Dominion Gunpowder. So I decided I had to strengthen the cards a little. Except for Reserves, which seemed like it was already fine at 3 cost because it is in essence a cheap version of Laboratory... You draw a card and if you don't like it, you discard it to draw another card. I changed Garrison so that it now gives +2 Actions if you discard the drawn card. That makes it more like a Village type card and also fits the Garrison theme better of having a garrison waiting to act when needed. I changed Factory so that it gives +1 Buy and +1 Coin if you discard the drawn card. So now it is stronger and better fits the factory theme of being able to mass produce cheap goods. I really like where these are at now and feel they are a vast improvement over their original form.

As for the presentation, point well taken. I wasn't aware that there was an established format that would make these cards easier to read and more digestible to this particular online community. After I finish typing this post, I will alter Dominion Gunpowder to fit that format. I want this expansion to be easy and accessible, so I'll gladly change it up to fit in better here.

Lastly, I remain surprised that the whole 'replace Alchemy to play Gunpowder' has been somewhat controversial, or at least thought of as a bad idea sans any controversy. I merely thought of it as an easy way somebody out there could play this expansion if they wanted to. I think the point you all are trying to make is that, though modeled after and inspired by Alchemy, I should just make Gunpowder a completely separate thing without throwing in the replacement thing. What I might do is alter the replacement 'rule' to be more of a suggestion for those who would like to playtest Dominion Gunpowder. It'd be more a postscript mentioned after the card descriptions rather than one of the first things said in the expansion rules. What I'm also wondering is if you all have made print and play versions of your own variants/expansions/cards and are suggesting I do the same with Dominion Gunpowder. Not sure if that is something I'd have the time and interest to do, but I might end up pursuing that if that's the best thing for making this available to people that will actually play it.

Thanks again for all the constructive criticism. I think I've made all the right changes to this expansion set, and don't really foresee any more. Perfectly understood if these cards still aren't quite some people's cup of tea, but it is what it is, and that's good enough for me because I like the overall theme of this expansion as well as the individual cards I ended up making. This has really been a fun and interesting learning experience when it comes to Dominion and game design.
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #27 on: July 03, 2014, 02:01:16 pm »
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Okay, so I reworked the format/wording of the expansion, and also ended up making every Gunpowder cost card cost 1 less Coin, except for General, which now costs 2 Gunpowder to buy. It makes the whole set a lot more affordable and usable, plus it wraps a minor loose end in that I wanted a card that cost 2 Gunpowder, and now I have that in this expansion.

So now Bomb is only 1 Gunpowder, making it super cheap. And Soldier is only 1 Gunpowder and 1 Coin, also super cheap. The most expensive Gunpowder cost card is Cannon, but i think it is fair to equate it to a 6 cost card.

Never say never, but I think Dominion Gunpowder is finally a done deal as far as its design goes. Much much gratitude from everybody who put in their two cents, especially KingZog and Silverspawn. I'm very happy with where this expansion ended up.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2014, 02:02:20 pm by ErrinF »
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #28 on: July 03, 2014, 02:10:17 pm »
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Yes, never say never... lol

I realized I had one small design flaw with the cheapening of the Gunpowder cost cards... Musketeers would be immune to Attacks that trash cards from 3 to 6 coin cost. Only Soldier is supposed to be immune to that.

But the fix was rather easy. Instead of a Gunpowder symbol on a card being ignored after it leaves the Supply, that symbol now counts as +1 Coin to the card's cost for cards that refer to such. Done and done. : )
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silverspawn

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #29 on: July 03, 2014, 02:23:42 pm »
+1

if only it were so easy  ::)
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #30 on: July 03, 2014, 02:46:53 pm »
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Oops... I forgot to address one thing.

Yes, Sulfur Pit does use immediate Buys like Black Market and therefore allows you to play your Treasure cards mid-Action. It does indeed open that 'Pandora's Box'. There's something strange in that pit... lol

And while I'm at it, I might as well address again that the Soldiers, Musketeers, and Grenadiers will all remain 'samey' because they are meant to make war with each other (and other cards) that way. They are the 3 Action-Attack-Reaction cards that make up the infantry of the Gunpowder 'army'. I also like that all three are essentially slight reworkings of the same concept, but in degrees so that they have a ranking of sorts among them. Given the range of the Randomizer cards, you'd most likely end up with only 1 of these 3 cards in the Supply if any of them show up at all. So that sameness isnt going to be a huge factor in the end, I feel. I think that if an Attack-Reaction card shows up in the Supply, it is mainly going to be used against itself if it is the only Attack-Reaction card in the Supply, and is definitely going to be used against itself if it is the only Attack in the Supply. When it comes down to it, Dominion as is lacks in cards that prevent attacks (it really only has Moat and Lighthouse to prevent an attack), yet has a plethora of attacks. I also felt that if I was going to make an expansion that was mainly about destructive Knight type attacks, it would need cards in it that could prevent such attacks. In this case, more than one. So the Soldiers, Musketeers, and Grenadiers will remain as is because that is their role in this particular expansion. I'm sure others have delved into Attack-Reaction cards, but this is how I chose to go about it for Dominion Gunpowder. I'm pretty set on that, particularly now that these cards are much more affordable and the Gunpowder buying/cost dynamic has been worked out a lot better.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2014, 02:49:58 pm by ErrinF »
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KingZog3

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #31 on: July 03, 2014, 03:01:02 pm »
+1

Have you played many games with these cards yet?
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #32 on: July 03, 2014, 03:19:29 pm »
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Yes, if only so easy. lol

I just made another minor change. Artillery is +1 Coin instead of +2 Coin. This makes it more akin to Grenadier and less to Cannon. Cannon is the only Gunpowder cost card now that is +2 Coin. All of the Attack cards in Dominion Gunpowder add Coin to represent the spoils of war (not unlike Militia). Note that Sulfur Pit is NOT an Attack card because it hands out it's Curses like Ill Gotten Gains... a Buy is made to invoke the Curse, not an Attack.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2014, 03:31:39 pm by ErrinF »
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #33 on: July 03, 2014, 03:28:13 pm »
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Have you played many games with these cards yet?

No, I only have the virtual cards at Goko. When I purchase Dominion in the near future, I'll get the base set and Alchemy first (as well as Cornucopia, my favorite set) and then I can playtest it. As it were, this expansion is still in the design phase, though that phases seems about done. Emphasis on the word 'seems'.

And I'd really like to play you at Goko and learn the game more in depth from your perspective if you have the chance some time, KingZog3. I'm Hangar18 at Dominion Online. I'd let you decide if you wanted to play pro, casual, or unrated. I'm leaning towards unrated or casual instead of pro, just so I wouldnt effect your high pro score if I somehow got lucky. My pro score is unimportant compared to yours cuz I'll never be up there in those high of ranks, so I wouldnt want to negatively effect your rating if I somehow got lucky in a game, which happens to the best of players. Anyway, just hit me up over there if you see me and feel like playing. And thanks again for helping me improve this expansion a million percent. lol
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KingZog3

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #34 on: July 03, 2014, 03:37:47 pm »
+1

Have you played many games with these cards yet?

No, I only have the virtual cards at Goko. When I purchase Dominion in the near future, I'll get the base set and Alchemy first (as well as Cornucopia, my favorite set) and then I can playtest it. As it were, this expansion is still in the design phase, though that phases seems about done. Emphasis on the word 'seems'.

And I'd really like to play you at Goko and learn the game more in depth from your perspective if you have the chance some time, KingZog3. I'm Hangar18 at Dominion Online. I'd let you decide if you wanted to play pro, casual, or unrated. I'm leaning towards unrated or casual instead of pro, just so I wouldnt effect your high pro score if I somehow got lucky. My pro score is unimportant compared to yours cuz I'll never be up there in those high of ranks, so I wouldnt want to negatively effect your rating if I somehow got lucky in a game, which happens to the best of players. Anyway, just hit me up over there if you see me and feel like playing. And thanks again for helping me improve this expansion a million percent. lol

I'm on now. Meet me in Outpost
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theory

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #35 on: July 03, 2014, 03:56:42 pm »
+4

I'm leaning towards unrated or casual instead of pro, just so I wouldnt effect your high pro score if I somehow got lucky. My pro score is unimportant compared to yours cuz I'll never be up there in those high of ranks, so I wouldnt want to negatively effect your rating if I somehow got lucky in a game, which happens to the best of players.

A win is a win!  If you beat someone, you deserve those points! :) 
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silverspawn

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #36 on: July 03, 2014, 03:58:02 pm »
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Quote
A win is a win!  If you beat someone, you deserve those points! :)

uh, ew, i couldn't disagree more
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #37 on: July 03, 2014, 04:01:33 pm »
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That pesky General...

I ended up changing his Cost from 2 Gunpowder to $2 + 1 Gunpowder. He has enough conditions placed on him besides needing a 2 Gunpowder buy to purchase. This keeps him the same equivolent cost to Vineyard. Also, this now makes him vulnerable to Attacks that trash cards costing from 3 to 6 Coin cost, which I think is better suited. It also creates a new dynamic between the General and the Soldier, Musketeer, and Grenadier cards when it comes to preventing attacks to protect any General in hand.
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #38 on: July 03, 2014, 04:04:01 pm »
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Ok, just seeing that so I will head over to Outpost now. I was reworking this expansion. lol

And I agree with Silverspawn... a win is a win, but the rating system at Goko has some issues to resolve still, and a high level player gets punished too much for an unlucky loss to a low level player they were just trying to be cool and play with.
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KingZog3

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #39 on: July 03, 2014, 04:06:27 pm »
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Ok, just seeing that so I will head over to Outpost now. I was reworking this expansion. lol

And I agree with Silverspawn... a win is a win, but the rating system at Goko has some issues to resolve still, and a high level player gets punished too much for an unlucky loss to a low level player they were just trying to be cool and play with.

Sorry, I went to play another game while I waited. It's up again.
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #40 on: July 03, 2014, 05:23:48 pm »
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I just made some minor changes to the layout/presentation of Dominion Gunpowder so it can be a little more universal for players outside of this site. It is still quite easy to read for those used to a certain format here.

Dominion Gunpowder is done for now. Enjoy!

Thanks again to everybody here for their two cents. : )
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GendoIkari

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #41 on: July 03, 2014, 09:31:11 pm »
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One other minor thing. The rules for gunpowder seem a bit convoluted. Why not have it be trashed when played, instead of having it produce the gunpowder without being trashed, but then only trashed if the person buys a card with gunpowder in the cost? If you aren't going to buy a gunpowder cost card, then you just shouldn't play the gunpowder anyway. Spoils returns to the pile when played; not only if the $3 is spent. The only time that this would be different is with Bank, Horn of Plenty, Herbalist, or Mandarin. If you really think that the ability to combo with those specific 4 cards is worth the wording, then fine... But it just seems simpler (and more thematic) to have gunpowder work just like spoils... +1 gunpowder, and return this to the supply.

Also, your wording allows something that may be not what you want... Play gunpowder, (or 2 or 3), buy Mandarin (returning Gunpowders to deck), then buy a couple Bombs or Soldiers. You can get gunpowder-cost cards without losing the gunpowder!

Also, with current rules, if I play 2 gunpowder cards, and buy 1 soldier, do I just lose 1 gunpowder, or both? If you want to keep it functioning the way it is, you probably still want to clean up the rule wording: "any time you spend a gunpowder, return a gunpowder card from play to the supply."
« Last Edit: July 03, 2014, 09:59:19 pm by GendoIkari »
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enfynet

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #42 on: July 03, 2014, 10:21:51 pm »
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I like the idea of Gunpowder doing something other than generating "money" to spend. A treasure that attacks when played?
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eHalcyon

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #43 on: July 03, 2014, 10:37:55 pm »
+1

I see that there is already quite a bit of discussion so far.  Here are my initial impressions as I read the OP, before having read any of the discussion.

- It isn't really necessary to specify that you replace Alchemy cards.  People who are inclined to play with variants will know how to proxy cards. :)

- No real need to clarify how "Attack-Reaction" type would work.  There isn't an official example, but the rules framework is already there.  Only need to specify if there are any special rules, which there aren't, right?

Gunpowder - So it works the same way as Potion, except that they are one-shot if used.  You could actually make them fully one-shot to greatly simplify the rules without changing the effect much at all.  The only time it really matters* that I can think of is in combination with Venture.  Otherwise, players can simply choose not to play it.  Therefore I would recommend simplifying the rules.  It's not worth all the extra complexity to address one scenario.

* There is another edge case where it can matter -- if you are Possessed, you could be forced to play and trash your Gunpowder even though the possessor doesn't buy a Gunpowder-cost card.  This is an edge case because the trashed Gunpowder will return to your deck; it only matters in rare reshuffle circumstances.

It is odd that the Gunpowder symbol counts as an extra coin symbol out of the supply.  Acceptable, but odd.  From everything else, I'd expect it to work like Potion instead.  You should clarify how this interacts with cost reduction.  Will Bridge "see" it as a coin and be able to reduce it, or will a card costing 1 Gunpowder always treated as a "$1" card at minimum?

It is interesting to have a Potion alternative that is cheaper but also more limited due to self-trashing.  This can be both a blessing -- no more junk treasure sticking around in your deck in the late game -- and a curse -- much harder to get multiples of Gunpowder-costing cards (which I will call GP cards from now on).  Note that the difficulty of getting GP cards, even more than Potion cards, suggests that they should be more powerful than Potion cards, or cards where you really want one copy but don't need more than that.  Yeah GP costs only $2 each, but that self-trashing is a huge roadblock for viability.

Bomb - This is incredibly weak.  Trashing is good, but it's not worth the investment of getting GP just to trash a single card with Bomb.

Soldier - Also very weak.  The action and attack is much weaker than Militia but the card is more expensive when you factor in the opportunity cost of getting GP at all.  The reaction gives it a small bonus, but it is extremely small.  You don't want to trash a card that you spent so much effort to obtain!

Musketeer - This is alright, I think.  Still rather weak, but I could see myself buying it in some niche circumstances.  The reaction is still pretty terrible because it means I don't get to play that card on my turn.  As for the attack... discarding 1 card doesn't actually hurt that much, and it'll usually be a Copper or Estate anyway.  This hurts more in thinned decks, when you can force players to trash more expensive cards.  But this still isn't that great.  Unlike Rogue or Knights, the opponent has more control over what gets trashed.  That said, it could sometimes be useful.

Grenadier - This, Musketeer and Soldier are all clearly just variations of each other.  Not necessarily a bad thing, but this amount of similarity is uninteresting within a small set.

The action on Grenadier is mostly weaker than Musketeer because the latter has an additional (though mild) discard attack.  Grenadier is also mostly weaker than Rogue/Knights, which can look through two cards instead of just one.  By only looking at one, it becomes much swingier as it misses more often, but it can sometimes hit something important, where a Knight may have given the victim a choice to trash something lesser.  Overall, I find this swinginess undesirable in an already luck-driven attack.

The reaction on Grenadier is much more interesting than the one for Soldier and Musketeer.  It's still a relatively weak reaction, but top-decking itself means that the protection can extend to more turns.  That's pretty neat when facing an opponent who is trying to play one strong attack every turn -- something that is not uncommon.  This feature is also a nice fit with the GP cost.  One Grenadier may be all you need to keep you consistently defended.

For testing, I would probably use this reaction to replace Musketeer's and then get rid of this and Soldier from the set.

Artillery - OK, this is getting kind of ridiculous.  These are all just variations of the same card.

Cannon - Again, too much similarity.  Why is the discard attack so complicated?  It ends up being a slightly milder version of "discard down to 3 cards".  The main difference is that an opponent who has more than 6 cards can end with 5+ cards in hand.  (Note that a player with just 6 cards will discard 2, then discard another 1 and end at 3 anyway.)

This seems to be the last of the GP-cost cards.  They are all far too similar, making it not worthwhile to have an entirely separate currency for them.

Reserves - It's alright, but is probably weak enough to cost $2.

Garrison - I think this is alright as is.  I'd try testing this at $2 as well.

Factory - I'd also test this at $2.  Point of comparison -- Candlestick Maker.

Army - This is OK, maybe.  It might actually be too powerful for $6.  Army can be a Laboratory with bonus sifting, not to mention some extra options to take instead of the card draw.  It feels overly complex without bringing anything new to the table though.

Sulfur Pit - This card has quite a few problems... First, it has you "buy" things as part of its action.  What if you don't have any coin available?  What if this board doesn't even have virtual coin cards?  In the latter case, Sulfur Pit becomes completely useless, unless you make it like Black Market -- in which case you need to say so.

Second, what if there is no GP-cost card on the board?  That takes away 2/3 functions of the card.

Third, the Curse attack scales weirdly.  In a 2 player game, this is mediocre -- you pay $1 to give your opponent a Curse.  But what about in a 4 player game?  Can I spend $1 just to Curse the player to my left, leaving the others alone?  That would not be cool and gets a bit political.  But if not, that means I need to spend $3 to curse the other players.  That's really expensive to pay for every play of the card.

General - Oh, another GP card.  The cost makes these hard to buy, which already weakens them as a strategy.  I'm not going to buy lots of attacks for General when it's so difficult to stock up on them!  Depending on the board, there might not even be any attack cards available.

There is a second possibility for when you have no attack cards though.  That makes the design feel a bit clumsy.  This is also difficult to take advantage of.  If I'm interpreting it correctly, you are supposed to pick one card and count the copies in your deck.  This would cap the value at 6VP (Rats notwithstanding) but requires nearly piledriving the action card -- highly unlikely to happen.  An alternative interpretation is that this will count each set of 3 identically-named action cards.  So if I have 3 Villages and 3 Smithies, General will still be worth 4VP.  That might actually be interesting.

The difficulty of buying GP still holds it back though.  There is also some conceptual overlap with Vineyard, but I don't know how similar they would feel without testing it.





I've got to go now, but I'll read through the discussion later.
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GendoIkari

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #44 on: July 03, 2014, 11:46:46 pm »
+1

Gunpowder - So it works the same way as Potion, except that they are one-shot if used.  You could actually make them fully one-shot to greatly simplify the rules without changing the effect much at all.  The only time it really matters* that I can think of is in combination with Venture.  Otherwise, players can simply choose not to play it.  Therefore I would recommend simplifying the rules.  It's not worth all the extra complexity to address one scenario.

* There is another edge case where it can matter -- if you are Possessed, you could be forced to play and trash your Gunpowder even though the possessor doesn't buy a Gunpowder-cost card.  This is an edge case because the trashed Gunpowder will return to your deck; it only matters in rare reshuffle circumstances.

Oops, I missed Venture and Possession. You missed Bank, Horn of Plenty, Herbalist, and Mandarin. See my last post.
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eHalcyon

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #45 on: July 04, 2014, 05:04:24 pm »
0

OK, went through comments.  I reply to fewer of them in the end because I was getting tired.  These are mostly responses to you, Errin, though I comment on some others' thoughts a few times as well.  I mostly agree with them.  One difference is that I think Army is actually pretty strong whereas the others still seem to think it is on the weaker side.  Maybe it's been updated since their comments.

I'll start with something positive -- I like your enthusiasm. :)

You may want to skip the rest though, if only because it's long and I end up repeating a lot of what's already been covered.  OTOH, if the others haven't convinced you already, perhaps my approach and examples will better clarify to you where your concepts miss their mark.  It's worth noting that my comments are all on your updated cards, and that I never saw the ones before.  Based on the comments, I get the idea that you've tried to strenthen and change cards based on the feedback, but I don't think you've done enough yet.

Anyway, don't let these criticism discourage you.  As silverspawn joked, it's a good thing that you've gotten as much response as you have.

Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way to other player's decks. The Gunpowder cards are trashed after use to limit how quickly a deck can be filled with cards that have Gunpowder in the cost. I consider Bomb to be incredibly useful because the only other trashing card that can trash itself after use is Hermit (which also requires special circumstances to trash itself). Otherwise, you get stuck with a trashing card like Chapel after it does its work. Use a few Bombs and your deck will clear up quickly.

Besides limiting the destructive power of the Gunpowder cost cards by making the Gunpowder trash itself after use, I wanted Gunpowder to not just be a straight up copy of Potion. What other Treasures trash themselves after use? Counterfeit may trash other treasures, but it doesnt trash itself. Gunpowder is cheaper than a Potion card, trashes itself after use, and the Gunpowder cost in a card vanishes after it leaves the Supply, making it like any other card (unlike the special rules for Potion cost cards). I also think that back in medieval/renaissance times, gunpowder use was very crude and limited, so it should be a task to use Gunpowder in Dominion as well. The Sulfur Pit card sort of remedies that if somebody wants to more easily build up a deck with Gunpowder cost cards. Every card in this expansion is meant to be different than Kingdom cards already in the game. I'm keeping the Gunpowder card as is because that's how it is meant to work, similar to Potion but not identical.

And you are quite mistaken that my wording for Cannon is the same as 'discard down to 3 cards'. Suppose Cannon and Soothsayer (or Governor or Council Room ) are in the Supply. Suppose there are a few players. Soothsayers/Governors get played and player's hands get up to 6 or 7 cards. Then a Cannon card gets played. With my wording, only two cards get hit (just like a Knight would hit two cards, or a Rogue, etc). With your wording, too many cards get discarded and possibly trashed. I picked that wording specifically to avoid such a situation. Its called reducing the 'swinginess' of the game. The scenario I put forth Soothsayers/Governors totally happens enough in gameplay and does indeed warrant precise wording. I would rather be thorough and specific. Its not like my wording is at all that confusing or complicated. Thanks for the feedback, but I'll most likely be keeping this variant expansion as is. Its meant to be limited in a certain way, which includes certain detailed word use so as to avoid too much destructive power when applied to certain situations that may pop up in any given Dominion game.

Potion already limits how quickly cards can be added to the deck, in that you can only ever buy one Potion-cost card per Potion in you deck per shuffle (edge case: Counterfeit).  Gun Powder, as a self-trashing treasure, limits it far more, to the extent that getting more than a single GP-cost card is just not a good idea, unless the GP-cost cards themselves are extremely powerful. 

Bomb is very weak.  You can only get rid of one card, but the opportunity cost is huge.  You have to give up a buy to get GP itself, then wait a shuffle, then another buy to get Bomb, then wait another shuffle before removing ONE card from your deck.  This is far too slow for far too little impact.  It's better to have a dead Chapel in your deck than those 9 remaining starting junk cards that you couldn't get rid of with Bomb.  It looks like other commenters have brought up Island, which is a great comparison.  Bomb is much harder to get than Island, but Island is worth 2VP (plus a potential extra VP if you set aside an Estate, compared to trashing an Estate with Bomb).

The concept is OK, but the execution is problematic in that your GP-cost cards do not have enough "destructive power" as to require limiting.  The Potion-cost cards are more powerful and less limited.  And it's fine to want to make cards unlike existing cards, but many similarities have already been noted.  Moreover, you should also be considering how similar your cards are to each other.

The wording for Cannon is practically the same as "discard down to 3 cards".  It's not identical, but the cases where it matters are uncommon.  It's also not reducing swinginess.  The cards that allow opponents to have more than 5 cards in hand during YOUR turn are cards that they don't play themselves -- Governor, Soothsayer, Council Room.  Rather than reducing swinginess, your Cannon wording merely nullifies an interesting card combo.

Army is Lab+ so fine at $6. I would put a little buff on it because I think it's weak for a $6 card, but it clearly has to be because it's better than lab. Not sure what the buff could be because it has all the Pawn options. Have you tested it? Maybe it's fine. I'd buy it over Adventurer.

Not sure if you are underestimating the versatility of Army, or if I'm overestimating it, or if it's been updated since you made that comment.  IMO, the one currently in the OP is very strong.

(By the way, am I the only person who makes decks that are Golem with only ONE type of Action card in the deck? That way I can always rely on the same action. Works great with Scheme and a few other Kingdom cards. Everybody else seems to have Golem be incidental, but if I use Golem, I revolve my whole deck around it).

Golem shouldn't be incidental.  None of the Potion cards should be, really.  Potion is such an investment that, if you go for it, you should have a plan for it.  The only exception really is Transmute, which I might pick up incidentally if I already grabbed Potion for something else.

Another thing about these 3 cards... they are meant to be quite destructive (as well as profitable) if enough of them are used with enough actions in a turn. In the case of this expansion

That's fine, but there are two problems.  First, it's far too difficult to pick up more than one of any of these because your GP disappears after use.  Second, it will be very difficult to play them in large numbers when they are all terminal... and also relatively weak compared to cards like Knights.  Given that they are so difficult to get, you could make them non-terminal to at least solve the second issue.

Reserves/Garrison/Factory... Basically the same concept

It's bad if you have three cards in a single set which are "basically the same concept."  Small sets especially should strive for variety.

Garrison is strictly worse than Hamlet. That's the main problem with your expansion - cards are very weak. Unless I'm missing some crazy interaction, straight Big Money wins with any gunpowder based deck.

Garrison is not strictly worse because it can provide +3 actions, which Hamlet cannot.  However, it may have been updated since you made this comment.

In regards to the sameness of some of the cards, that is indeed a theme in this expansion... most armies/militaries are not known for their variety. The Soldiers, Musketeers, and Grenadiers are meant to be similar and yet slightly improve on each other in rank. In this case, I feel there is plenty of variety still among the sameness. Sure, its mainly the Militia and Knight concept reworked in little ways, but that's going to be the main type of card in an expansion with the theme of warfare... Plus, that is the standard the game's creator set forth, and the Dominion is full of very similar cards that only have slight differences. Same goes for Dominion Gunpowder. Why would I get Factory over Garrison? Cuz maybe I want to build a deck about buys and coins. Why would I get Garrison over Reserves? Cuz maybe I want more Actions than Cards to sort through. My options are totally going change depending upon what is in the Supply. And although there is sameness within this expansion, it is not the same as any other expansion and is full of unique variations of cards already in the game.

I would disagree that militaries are homogenous.  There is a difference between light infantry, heavy infantry, calvary, artillery, etc. and you can see this in RTS games, among others.  Also, even though there are official Dominion cards that are very similar, they are not all grouped up in the same set.  Sure, all the various village cards are minor variations of each other, but there are only a couple in each set.

Gunpowder... Is that really such a waste to buy a treasure card that then removes itself from your deck when used? You all like being stuck with a Potion card when there's no more useful Potion cost cards to buy from the Supply? How about when you have to buy Potion just because Familiar is the only Curser in the Supply, then when the Curses are spent or all the Familiars are bought up, you are stuck with a useless Potion card. Imagine a game that has Potion and Gunpowder in it, but no cards that trash. Does Gunpowder look so bad then? Plus, it only costs 3 Coin. That is very easy to get any given round. The trash itself thing isnt automatic when used, only if played and the Gunpowder symbol produced is spent. Its also trashing itself to make the process of building a deck of Gunpowder cost cards a limited process, which is a theme throughout Dominion. To me, it totally follows the guidelines put forth by this forum for how to make Dominion cards/expansions. Its all about balance and limitation. You seem to feel these cards are too limited, while I feel all Dominion cards are meant to be limited in one way or another, and these cards are no different. You have to judge them by a few standards, not just strong/weak. Any card can become very strong if it is the only one of its kind in the Supply for a game, or matches just right with other Kingdom cards. So, yes, the Gunpowder buying/spending process is somewhat tedious at the beginning, but is actually rather cheap and can be done quickly if you have a strong deck later in the game with plenty of buys and coin to spend. I think there's a few complexities in this expansion that you are not quite grasping or fully understanding as of yet.

The dead Potion hurts, but it would be worse if I have to buy a new one for every Potion card I want to get.  If I managed to win the Curse split thanks to Familiar, I don't mind the Potion in my deck.  In a game with both Potion and Gunpowder, Potion is probably better because almost all of the Potion cards are stronger than almost all of the Gunpowder cards (though it would depend on the rest of the board in the end).  Sure GP is cheap to buy, but the opportunity cost is still there.  Every GP I buy is a Silver or engine component that I don't buy.

Bomb... Interesting this is the main point of contention, as Bomb was the first card I thought of that then lead to the whole gunpowder/warfare concept behind this expansion. All I wanted to do was make a card that can trash any card then goes away itself. I dont like being stuck with Chapel after it has made itself useful by clearing the deck, and other such cards that Trash. Let's compare Bomb to other cards that trash.

You buy a Bomb, I buy a Chapel.  It takes you an extra shuffle before you even get to play the Bomb, after which you remove one junk card from your deck.  You still have 9 starting junk remaining.  Meanwhile, I have trashed all of my starting cards with Chapel.  Sure, I still have the Chapel, but you have 8 more junk cards than I do.

You go on to discuss how powerful trashing is, and you are correct.  But you are vastly overestimating the power of a one-shot one-card terminal trasher.  You even address the comparisons to Island, but somehow don't see the difference.  Island you can buy outright while Bomb takes an extra shuffle and Buy to obtain because of its cost.  Island isn't even that strong.  It's decent, but it's very, very rare when Islands alone are effective for major deck trimming.  Bomb is even slower.

Soldier... Meant to be cheap, weak, and expendable. Also meant to be used in numbers. Two of them used in one turn reduces every other player's deck to 3 cards. Urchin cant do that. Minion cant do that. Soldier in numbers can. Also, the card can both attack and react to attacks. To me that justifies the cost. If a game comes down to one attack after another, a strategically used Soldier may get trashed, but can end up shifting the balance so you win. I don't think you are quite factoring in properly how strong these cards can be in unison and in numbers. And in conjunction with the right Kingdom cards. Plus, suppose Soldier is the ONLY reaction card in the Supply to prevent attacks. Is he so useless then?

Urchin is far easier to get, and it's a cantrip to boot.  Minion is a more powerful attack because 4 average cards is worse than best of 3.  And that's not considering the fact that we are talking about one single card versus TWO Soldiers, each of which are expensive.  You are underestimating the opportunity cost of investing in Potion/Gunpowder.  You are also stressing the power of these cards "in numbers", but their cost means that you won't be able to muster a large force.  Why should I take all the effort of getting Soldiers when I can get Knights instead?  And yes, even if Soldier is the only reaction, it's still pretty weak.

Grenadier... Of course it is similar to Knights. Knights set the standard for destructive attack cards. Who else am I going to model warfare type cards after except for Knights and Rogues? But do Knights have a way to prevent attacks? No. Do Knights make a player discard from hand? Only one of them does; The other 9 don't. Two Knights attack in one turn, and unless one is Sir Michael, all the other players are left with a full hand. Two Grenadiers attack in one turn, and all the other players are down to 3 cards. A Knight deck versus Grenadier deck... Grenadiers can prevent a Knight's attack. Knights can't prevent a Grenadier's attack. And if a Grenadier prevents an attack one turn, he most likely shows up in your hand the next turn. A Grenadier deck most likely beats out a Knight deck. And again, Grenadier damages strong decks like Musketeer, and is only weak against weak decks. But again, weak decks full of trashable cards are no threat to anybody, and the last standard I'd ever use to judge a Dominion card.

By the time you get two Grenadiers, I will probably have 5 Knights.  Knights can look at more cards than Grenadier, so it is more likely to successfully trash a Grenadier than the other way around.  Grenadier can defend against ONE Knight attack, but that also prevents you from attacking with it that turn, so it evens out.  And then you aren't able to defend against my second Knight.  If my Knight gets trashed, it's not too tough to buy another.  GP cost makes it much more difficult to replace a Grenadier.

Artillery... Similar but a worthy variation. And it has no problems cuz its not weak and can be very destructive, especially if a player using it knows what the top card of another player's deck is and chooses that option for artillery. It can both destroy cards from 3 to 6 coin cost and at the same time lower a player's cards in hand. And adds 2 coin. Would you rather have Dame Sylvia? lol

Cannon... Militia doesnt trash cards. Cannon is extremely destructive against a strong deck of cards. You seem more worried about weak decks than strong ones. That's not the Dominion I know. The Dominion I know is full of tough, strong decks to be worried about. If Cannon were in the Supply and no other card that trashes other player's cards were in the Supply, would you really take a pass on it and let your opponent grab up a bunch of cannons instead? If so, prepare to lose when he blows apart your deck once it gets to any worthy level of strength. Cannon is the most costly and strongest of the Gunpowder cost cards, and for good reason. I really dont think you'd think it was so weak if you had to play up against it.

If I'm choosing between a Knight and Artillery, I might opt for Artillery.  It's not bad.  But factoring in the cost of the cards, it's not so simple anymore.  And even if I do go for Artillery, I'm not going to go for a second one because the opportunity cost of buying multiple GPs is THAT high.

If my opponent wants to pursue Cannons and spend 3 extra buys on Gunpwoder, I'd be happy to let him.  I'll have most of the Provinces by the time he is able to attack me in earnest.  And note that Province itself is a safe discard against all of these trashing attacks.

ill never understand how the amount of response in forums works

Pretty random for me... if I'm in the mood to critique, I will do it.  :P

Gunpowder - So it works the same way as Potion, except that they are one-shot if used.  You could actually make them fully one-shot to greatly simplify the rules without changing the effect much at all.  The only time it really matters* that I can think of is in combination with Venture.  Otherwise, players can simply choose not to play it.  Therefore I would recommend simplifying the rules.  It's not worth all the extra complexity to address one scenario.

* There is another edge case where it can matter -- if you are Possessed, you could be forced to play and trash your Gunpowder even though the possessor doesn't buy a Gunpowder-cost card.  This is an edge case because the trashed Gunpowder will return to your deck; it only matters in rare reshuffle circumstances.

Oops, I missed Venture and Possession. You missed Bank, Horn of Plenty, Herbalist, and Mandarin. See my last post.

Ooh.  Well, you win this round. ;)

I believe all of these interactions can be preserved by having Gunpowder trash itself when discarded from play.  Best of both worlds.
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KingZog3

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #46 on: July 04, 2014, 06:20:22 pm »
+4

I played a couple of fun games with Errin the other day. Making cards and balancing them is very much linked to how you play Dominion. While I built much more, Errin greened early in nearly every game. We had 2 Knights games I think, maybe Errin remembers better, and he said that Knights means you always go for them. I said that's not true, there are cases where you can't or shouldn't go for the. Our games were not examples of those though. Also before I had a chance to ask him (because I had to run) was that he had said he has a basic set strategy on how to play. Errin also pointe out (This is rude talking about you in the third person on your own thread, but I started like this, so I'll end the post like this) that the way I was talking about the cards implied that their power was relative to the set-up. My feeling is these cards are made with this in mind, that trashing is always good, that trashing attacks are always strong and so on. This is not the case. The first example it Fortress, which stops trashing attacks in their tracks. Trashing is not good in Gardens games, or with Apothecary. etc...
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #47 on: July 05, 2014, 11:32:27 am »
+2

You're reading WAY too much into those few games of Dominion there, KingZog. And all I did was candidly discuss certain ideas about Dominion strategy with you. I'm sorry you assumed I was married to any of them. I was not, and the majority of what you posted in that last reply was quite mistaken about me. I thought those games were between us, and didn't realize you had an agenda to come back here and 'report' on me negatively as a way to further talk down this expansion of mine.

None of our gameplay the other day has anything to do with Dominion Gunpowder. Thanks for the games anyway, but I would prefer this forum be about the variant expansion I created and not about me. If this expansion still isn't for you, than so be it. It is made for others then and not you. I'm just here to post/share an unofficial variant expansion for Dominion. Some people are going to like it and play it. Some people are not. If you are one of the people that are not, duly noted. Not much more to discuss about it then. Thanks again for your input during the development phase of my variant expansion. It's done now.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2014, 11:43:16 am by ErrinF »
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KingZog3

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #48 on: July 05, 2014, 11:59:13 am »
+4

You're reading WAY too much into those few games of Dominion there, KingZog. And all I did was candidly discuss certain ideas about Dominion strategy with you. I'm sorry you assumed I was married to any of them. I was not, and the majority of what you posted in that last reply was quite mistaken about me. I thought those games were between us, and didn't realize you had an agenda to come back here and 'report' on me negatively as a way to further talk down this expansion of mine.

None of our gameplay the other day has anything to do with Dominion Gunpowder. Thanks for the games anyway, but I would prefer this forum be about the variant expansion I created and not about me. If this expansion still isn't for you, than so be it. It is made for others then and not you. I'm just here to post/share an unofficial variant expansion for Dominion. Some people are going to like it and play it. Some people are not. If you are one of the people that are not, duly noted. Not much more to discuss about it then. Thanks again for your input during the development phase of my variant expansion. It's done now.

I didn't have an agenda. I was simply saying that cards made are linked to how people play the game. You obviously think blocking attacks is strong, because you keep insisting that it is. I didn't mean to report negatively about your cards and of course anyone is free to enjoy them if they want to. But you can't expect me to not talk about the games we played and what we said. How good a player is at Dominion is very much linked to the strength of the cards they make because the power levels of cards can be skewed to match what they think is strong or not. It has nothing to do with how fun you find the cards, or how you enjoy making them. And don't think I was personally trying to insult you. You were polite, and carried good conversation (unlike some people on goko). And like I said, I didn't get to ask you much about what you said because I had to run. I should have phrased it more like a question, and that's my bad. I wanted to know what you meant when you said you sort of have a set strategy. The rest was just a continuation of the thought without waiting for a reply.

I really don't want to start another negative argument (as I just stopped posting in another thread because things got pretty heated). Sorry, and I didn't mean any personal insult.
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ErrinF

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Re: Dominion: Gunpowder
« Reply #49 on: July 05, 2014, 12:21:50 pm »
0

The wording for the Gunpowder card is that way for exactly the reason mentioned... to only have Gunpowder trashed for buying a Gunpowder cost card. I did not want the card to automatically trash itself; It has to essentially be 'converted' into a Gunpowder cost card. The various fringe examples listed are why I used the wording I did.

And if you don't get why Gunpowder cost cards have their Gunpowder symbol turned to +1 Coin value of the card once they leave the Supply, you are missing a major/core mechanic of this expansion: The trashing of other player's cards that are valued from 3 to 6 Coin. If I didn't change the Gunpowder symbol after it left the Supply, then the Gunpowder cost cards would be immune to that mechanic, including amongst themselves! Musketeers couldnt trash Musketeers, Cannons couldnt trash Cannons, etc. And I changed it to +1 Coin value after leaving the Supply because that also best fits the core mechanic of 'warfare' in this expansion... Soldiers cannot be trashed by such attacks (unless they trash themselves in reaction to prevent such an attack), whereas Musketeers and Generals can....without the +1 coin cost value, Musketeers and Generals would be immune to such attacks (which I originally thought was good for the Generals, but changed it so that they should be vulnerable too. Also, the Gunpowder symbol turning into +1 Coin value allowed me to keep the Gunpowder cost cards affordable. I originally priced them to fit the 3 to 6 Coin value scheme, but that made them too expensive. When I lowered all of their costs by 1 coin and changed the Gunpowder symbol to +1 Coin after leaving the Supply, I was able to best balance out affordability and the core mechanic of trashing other players 3 to 6 coin cost cards.

As for Bomb, yes, it is not all that powerful as I originally thought, but now it is super cheap and can still be useful here and there.

I don't feel Reserves, Garrison, and Factory are all that 'samey'. Sure, they are in essence +1 action, +1 card cards that sift through your deck, but to different results. The +1 Card makes Reserves more like reserves... you can essentially draw two cards and pick the better of the two... you just have to pick them one at a time. The +2 Actions make Garrison more like a garrison... ready to act in times of need. The +1 Buy +1 Coin makes Factory more like a factory... it can help you quickly get cheap goods in numerous supply. All three cards are meant to augment the 'army' put forth in this expansion, and they do just that. I am very happy with how they ended up, because now they work better and fit their theme much, much better.

Lastly, let me explain something about Dominion Gunpowder.... Cornucopia is my favorite expansion because of the Tournament card. And not just because of the Prizes. Its because the Tournament represents a game within the game. I feel Masquerade is somewhat similar, as is Rebuild or Pirate Ship or Knights or Black Market if you look at them a certain way. They kind of create their own little side game as the main game of Dominion goes along. Quite a few Dominion cards are like that. These cards in Dominion Gunpowder also create their own side game... the game of war. That 'game' is best represented by the 3 Attack/Reaction cards, but most all the Dominion cards play into it, such as General and Army. Sulfur Pit is its own little side game too... if it gets hit by the 'trash 3 to 6 coin cast cards' mechanic, the results are explosive!

When I create a game (in this case a free variant expansion), I like to be very thematic and cohesive with it's mechanics. It is a hobby of mine to make free RPGs (and similar games) to post online for people to play if they so wish. This is the first time I've made a free variant expansion for a popular game such as Dominion. And probably the last... I've had a great time here and appreciate the feedback/interest, but Dominion Gunpowder is my only idea for a Dominion expansion. I didn't even plan on making it... I just thought one day if I made a card or two for Dominion, what would I make? I realized I wanted a card that trashed itself after trashing another card, then I realized one of the most interesting cards to me was Potion and that I wanted to make a card like it. So when I thought of a bomb being the concept for the trashing card, I realized the Potion type card I wanted to make was gunpowder, as I've always found it interesting how they started using crude artillery and simple cannons early on in the Medieval time period that Dominion is based in. The rest just worked itself out, and I am very happy with how this all ended up. Thanks again for everybody's two cents worth. Your feedback was quite helpful. : )
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