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Author Topic: Swindler + Curser  (Read 5989 times)

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Rabid

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Swindler + Curser
« on: January 11, 2015, 06:02:56 pm »
+1

I tried this in today's match vs Mic (Thanks for streaming Mic) and wondered what other people think of giving copper with Swindler?
http://www.twitch.tv/mic_qsenoch/c/5858173
game starts @ 1.15.
http://gokosalvager.com/static/logprettifier.html?20150111/log.51201cbee4b04e88c8da4f9a.1420997416990.txt

Turn 9, @ 1.22
I give Mic a Copper with Swindler on the following logic.
I have a Soothsayer so I want the Curses left in the supply.

The result was my Soothsayer got hit by Swindler, then I was 1 point short of the win on Turn 19!
Game also features Adventurer for the Goko statistics thread!


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Mic Qsenoch

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2015, 06:09:10 pm »
+5

Going Curse -> Copper gives you a shot at giving me one extra piece of junk (the Copper), but it will never let you give me extra Curses relative to Curse -> Curse and has the potential to backfire if I Swindle a bunch of your Coppers or your Soothsayer. It provides me with an immediate benefit as well, which seems like the worst thing about it.
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2015, 07:06:15 pm »
+3

I don't see how Curse in the supply is better than Curse in his deck.

Also, Don't you want Curses to run out so Soothsayer doesn't let him draw cards?
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DG

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2015, 07:38:04 pm »
0

I can't see any good coming from that. Swindlers force you to play to the current deck contents rather than make long term plans anyway.
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pacovf

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2015, 07:45:03 pm »
0

I like the way you think (EDIT: see WW's post), but if you look at your play a bit more closely, it doesn't seem like a very good deal.

Compare what you are doing with having a soothsayer that gives one copper once the curses run out. Gaining a copper to draw an extra card hardly seems like an attack. What you are doing is even weaker, because you are giving the copper before the curses run out, which means extra buying power for your opponent until you give out all the junk, and the possibility that it will be you that will end up with the last curse...
« Last Edit: January 13, 2015, 07:46:39 am by pacovf »
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liopoil

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2015, 08:21:41 pm »
+1

I don't like getting a soothsayer there at all, actually.
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SCSN

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2015, 09:51:31 pm »
+1

The result was my Soothsayer got hit by Swindler, then I was 1 point short of the win on Turn 19!

Nothing teaches Dominion like the game itself :D
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jaketheyak

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2015, 12:08:28 am »
+1

I'm completely confused by the thinking here.
Swindler trashes the card it replaces, they don't go back into the supply.
So, giving a copper instead of a curse there does nothing to increase the number of curses available to give out.

If your opponent is not cursing you back, all you've done is delay handing out that curse.
The junking effect of curses is much more powerful the earlier you can hand them out.
The longer your opponent has to build his deck, the less a curse will hurt him.

More than that, as much as copper is considered junk it is still usable treasure.
So, by trashing a curse for a copper you have improved your opponent's deck.

But what really blows my mind is that your opponent is cursing you back.
So that extra curse left in the supply just as easily goes to you as to him!
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Awaclus

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2015, 12:17:04 am »
0

I'm completely confused by the thinking here.
Swindler trashes the card it replaces, they don't go back into the supply.
So, giving a copper instead of a curse there does nothing to increase the number of curses available to give out.

And giving him a Curse decreases it.
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jaketheyak

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2015, 12:29:23 am »
0

I'm completely confused by the thinking here.
Swindler trashes the card it replaces, they don't go back into the supply.
So, giving a copper instead of a curse there does nothing to increase the number of curses available to give out.

And giving him a Curse decreases it.

I concede that is true, but the rest stands, there's no benefit to delaying giving out a curse, especially when your opponent is quite capable of giving the curse to you instead.
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TheOthin

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2015, 02:09:26 am »
0

No matter what, it's antisynergy. Either Swindler and Soothsayer use up each others' Curses or Swindler weakens its attack to not use up Soothsayer's Curses, and either way it falls apart if Swindler hits a Curse. You could use Swindler to hope you use up the Curses for your opponent's Soothsayer, but that's extremely unreliable and the opposite of what was proposed here.
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BadAssMutha

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2015, 07:13:40 am »
0

These points have pretty much been mentioned, but your logic is flawed in four ways:

1. Cursing now > cursing later.
The longer a curse is in your opponent's deck, the more it hurts.

2. That curse could become yours.
Especially if your opponent already has something that can give it to you.

3. Adding junk < Replacing with junk.
Leaving an opponent with 7 Copper and 5 Curses is not nearly as good as replacing those Copper and leaving him with 2 Copper and 5 Curses.
Edit: Only in some cases where Copper is actually better than Curse, or near the start of the game. If Copper and Curse are equivalently junky, the sheer quantity of junk is more important than Curse density.

4. Soothsayer benefits your opponent only when cursing.
Your opponent draws a card when you curse with Soothsayer. If you can hand out the curses other ways, you avoid helping your opponent when you play Soothsayer.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2015, 05:57:34 am by BadAssMutha »
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DG

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2015, 08:01:26 am »
0

3. Adding junk < Replacing with junk.
Leaving an opponent with 7 Copper and 5 Curses is not nearly as good as replacing those Copper and leaving him with 2 Copper and 5 Curses.

Not always. In this case the opponent was wanting to draw the whole deck with hunting parties so having a bigger junkier deck was going to make that less likely.
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Rabid

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2015, 03:42:08 pm »
+2

Thanks for the comments everyone.
Looking at it again today I see I was very wrong yesterday.
In addition to the short turn economy boost issue, I had also missed that running out the curses stops the Soothsayer +Card.
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Awaclus

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2015, 05:56:01 pm »
0

3. Adding junk < Replacing with junk.
Leaving an opponent with 7 Copper and 5 Curses is not nearly as good as replacing those Copper and leaving him with 2 Copper and 5 Curses.

7 Copper and 5 Curses are 12 junk cards, 2 Copper and 5 Curses are 7 junk cards. I don't see how giving the opponent less junk would ever be good unless it's a Gardens game.
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #15 on: January 12, 2015, 06:16:26 pm »
+1

^A big problem is the assumption that Copper is just as bad as Curse. Sometimes it is, in which case you might want to give Copper instead of Curse if it's easier to give Curse than Copper later on, but a lot of times it's not, particularly early in the game.
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jaketheyak

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2015, 07:59:37 pm »
0

^A big problem is the assumption that Copper is just as bad as Curse. Sometimes it is, in which case you might want to give Copper instead of Curse if it's easier to give Curse than Copper later on, but a lot of times it's not, particularly early in the game.

Yeah, the use of the catch-all term "junk cards" is extremely misleading.
There are, as always, edge cases (Fairgrounds, Menagerie, etc), but Copper is otherwise always strictly better than Curse.
5 Coppers in hand buys me a decent a card.
5 Curses in hand does absolutely nothing.
Not to mention that -1VP can, as in the case in question, be the difference in the final score.
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jaketheyak

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2015, 08:01:17 pm »
0

That said, if I have five Curses in my deck and I draw them all in one hand, I may well do a happy dance.  :)
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BadAssMutha

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #18 on: January 13, 2015, 05:54:40 am »
+1

Quote
Quote
3. Adding junk < Replacing with junk.
Leaving an opponent with 7 Copper and 5 Curses is not nearly as good as replacing those Copper and leaving him with 2 Copper and 5 Curses.

7 Copper and 5 Curses are 12 junk cards, 2 Copper and 5 Curses are 7 junk cards. I don't see how giving the opponent less junk would ever be good unless it's a Gardens game.

Hm, upon further consideration I mostly agree, but I think it depends on the board and where in the game we are. If it's near the start of the game and the opponent hasn't even hit $5 yet, taking away Copper and increasing the Curse density could be more important than just adding more junk. With 5 curses and 7 copper, my opponent could still get a lucky good hand, but it's going to be a lot tougher with 5 curses and 2 copper.

Interesting thought experiment: Imagine two hypothetical cards, one which says "Each other player gains a Curse" and one which says "Each other player trashes a Copper from their discard pile and gains a Curse". In most cases, you're probably right that the former is better - the latter doesn't even seem so bad (hey, free Copper trashing!). However, I'd argue that there are some cases (junky Duchy slogs with no trashing, or near the very beginning of the game) where the latter might be more useful. It'd have to be one of those painful games where Copper is worth buying, though.
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Awaclus

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #19 on: January 13, 2015, 06:27:32 am »
+1

Interesting thought experiment: Imagine two hypothetical cards, one which says "Each other player gains a Curse" and one which says "Each other player trashes a Copper from their discard pile and gains a Curse". In most cases, you're probably right that the former is better - the latter doesn't even seem so bad (hey, free Copper trashing!). However, I'd argue that there are some cases (junky Duchy slogs with no trashing, or near the very beginning of the game) where the latter might be more useful. It'd have to be one of those painful games where Copper is worth buying, though.

Another interesting thought experiment: Imagine two cards, one of which is Swindler and the other is Mountebank. One costs $3 and can potentially turn $5 Actions into Duchies, the other one costs $5 and doesn't really do anything if the opponent has a Curse in their hand, and while they both are very powerful cards, the Mountebank one is still a lot more powerful relative to its price.
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WanderingWinder

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #20 on: January 13, 2015, 06:36:24 am »
+2

So, I don't at all think the play mentioned in the OP is correct, but I wanted to say that I love the idea and the discussion. It's threads like this which have gotten me to remake coppers over estates in several cases - really helping my game.

BadAssMutha

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #21 on: January 13, 2015, 10:34:46 am »
+1

Quote
Another interesting thought experiment: Imagine two cards, one of which is Swindler and the other is Mountebank. One costs $3 and can potentially turn $5 Actions into Duchies, the other one costs $5 and doesn't really do anything if the opponent has a Curse in their hand, and while they both are very powerful cards, the Mountebank one is still a lot more powerful relative to its price.

I think it's kind of interesting to note the effect of your opponent's deck composition for Swindler and Mountebank. Swindler arguably gets better as your opponent's deck gets better - like you said, you can turn awesome $5 actions into Duchies, or even critical $4's into less-useful ones, but you can only turn junky $0 cards into other junky $0 cards.

Mountebank, on the other hand, gets worse as your opponent's deck gets worse. If she's drawing a Curse in every hand, a single Mountebank is effectively not much more than just a +$2. It has a negative feedback effect, since the more you play it successfully (while Curses are still around, at least), the less likely it is you'll play it successfully again.

I guess the upshot is that Mountebank will help you to get ahead, but then slow down in its usefulness. Swindler starts out OK, but can really help you catch up from behind if you Swindle some key cards. As we all know, in Dominion it's better to get ahead and stay there, which is exactly why Mountebank is so good.

At any rate, this discussion has really made me evaluate the benefit of Swindling a Copper into a Curse, which I used to think was the cat's pajamas. It's certainly better than hitting Estate -> Estate, but unless you really need the Copper early on, or it's a game decided by only a couple of points, the effect seems fairly mild. The real payoff is in trashing costly actions (or in some cases, treasure).
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PK9

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Re: Swindler + Curser
« Reply #22 on: January 15, 2015, 09:16:53 pm »
0

I concede that is true, but the rest stands, there's no benefit to delaying giving out a curse, especially when your opponent is quite capable of giving the curse to you instead.

I think the OP was possibly thinking of the late game scenario where you accidentally swindle a Curse into a Copper?   But the chances of hitting that one specific card (the Copper that could have been a Curse) with exactly one Curse left in the supply is pretty astronomically low to consider that a justification for a weak early game move.   And you could even argue that by choosing Copper instead of a Curse you've basically done the Curse-->Copper swindle anyways, just much earlier in the game.
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