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Author Topic: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)  (Read 30986 times)

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dondon151

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #125 on: June 04, 2016, 10:14:18 pm »
0

of course!  people think it's just mashing buttons but there's so much more.  what i meant is, it's all still really fast-paced.  it always feels like there's something going on, in a way that it doesn't when Stef or Adam sits there inactive for minutes on end.

I mean, you just have to pretend that all of the cards are buttons, and you're clicking them together in your head as fast as you can.
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Seprix

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #126 on: June 04, 2016, 11:31:12 pm »
+1

Stef and Adam are calculating potential moves when they are inactive. Dominion is more like Chess than Street Fighter, and Dominion isn't even all that much like Chess.
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funkdoc

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #127 on: June 05, 2016, 08:58:01 pm »
+1

alright, i'll give some more detailed responses now...

Seprix & Dingan, thank you for all your breakdowns!  thing is, i just can't believe someone like SCSN or Dan says "just screw it i'm doing this thing" in the opening.  like, there's gotta be a level where you're fully in control, no?

jsh: "You're 80th on the leaderboard; that is very impressive."  thing is, i was 25th a few weeks ago!  hard for that not to feel rough, ya know?  i figured i probably wasn't as good as that suggested but...

iguanaiguana: trust me, i knew i was very lucky to walk away with that first game.  the gardens one i just didn't see a way to stop at all - i'm not used to gardens being relevant in a scrying pool game, and once you started i couldn't find any way to keep up in points.  was i supposed to snipe some gardens from you or what?  the stonemason/feodum one also felt to me like you had the better deck, or at least i couldn't figure out a way to beat it.

Dan Brooks: "Losing is good. It let's you figure out what works, what doesn't, and how different combinations of cards interact."  thing is, i've never been great at figuring out precisely why i lost.  here's another core issue: i build this set of rules & logic for a game, and can never understand when it loses because that destroys everything i ever knew about the game.  i can look at the log, but i can't bring myself to believe that what my opponent did was really better if it's the opposite of what everyone here says.

in today's league match, there was one board with heavy trashing (chapel + amulet) & grand market.  no villages or draw, but smugglers was there for a bit of gaining.  my plan was to open chapel/amulet, go all-out with trashing, then gain silvers with amulet to grab a grand market.  my opponent had a 5/2 and opened chapel/stash.  he had rather bad early draws while i had pretty good ones, but he bought a silver early to go along with that stash.  i think he then gained one silver from the amulet, and got a grand market the turn before i did.  this led to him winning the split 6-4, and i had no answer after that.  i don't know how to learn from a game like that, because i was winning the trashing race by a mile and that's supposed to be the most important thing.

another game from that same match had a similar issue.  king's court/wharf was the big thing, and we both opened forager/ironworks (board had market square & village, along with training to power up those villages).  i got a 2nd forager during the 2nd shuffle, while my opponent stuck with one forager; they got wharves and training really early, while i didn't buy a wharf until turn 11.  i just thought whenever forager's the only trasher you want AT LEAST 2 of them, and had never seen a situation where 1 was the right number.  i guess the ironworks was what made 2nd forager bad?  i swear i've lost like 50 wharf games in this exact fashion but i never learn, because i can't imagine playing dominion in a way besides "trashtrashtrashTRASHYOUIDIOT KEEP TRASHING".  tournament, inheritance, governor...anything like that will destroy me, because people play in a way i think is SUPPOSED to lose and it works for those cards.


thanks again everyone, i like to see people engage with the real core-level stuff here as opposed to just dominion cards!

Seprix

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #128 on: June 05, 2016, 09:05:20 pm »
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Seprix & Dingan, thank you for all your breakdowns!  thing is, i just can't believe someone like SCSN or Dan says "just screw it i'm doing this thing" in the opening.  like, there's gotta be a level where you're fully in control, no?

SCSN and Dan can pull wins out of their rears because they adapt and recognize what is and isn't working as they play. Openings are important, but most of the time SCSN and Dan go for weirder stuff, it's not much worse than whatever it is that is better.
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Mic Qsenoch

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #129 on: June 05, 2016, 11:54:04 pm »
0

http://gokosalvager.com/static/logprettifier.html?http://dominion-game-logs.s3.amazonaws.com/game_logs/20160603/log.0.1464918655452.txt

You cannot play this Alchemist/Stables draw your deck thing and keep 7 Coppers while there's a Spice Merchant on the board. Get one over the 1st or 2nd Potion. On turn 19 you take a Duchy but there's no close 3 pile, you still aren't drawing your deck consistently and you haven't even bought a Province yet. Then you just keep greening aggressively which makes all your Lab variants awful. You can beat him with Province points, but you have to be able to buy Provinces consistently first.

http://gokosalvager.com/static/logprettifier.html?http://dominion-game-logs.s3.amazonaws.com/game_logs/20160603/log.0.1464917761875.txt

Can't say I care much for the Ghost Ship, I like his Haggler a lot more. The attack hurts some, but between Vagrant/Cart/SP there's a lot here to mitigate it. Presence of Vagrant makes the Haggler pretty safe and then of course you can keep feeding in Cartographers and Markets as you buy Provinces. Not a fan of either player's Duchess buy, yours is a little better than his. Do not buy a Duchy turn 18, the game is not ending and you aren't even behind in points, get a Cartographer. Again, you start scrambling for points while there's a stack of Provinces waiting for some guy with a nice consistent deck to pick them up.
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Mic Qsenoch

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #130 on: June 06, 2016, 12:30:07 am »
+14

alright, i'll give some more detailed responses now...

Seprix & Dingan, thank you for all your breakdowns!  thing is, i just can't believe someone like SCSN or Dan says "just screw it i'm doing this thing" in the opening.  like, there's gotta be a level where you're fully in control, no?

Everybody does this sometimes, there's no magic level where this stops. I actually wish I thought even less in the opening, I'd love to get to a point where I'm opening within 10 seconds every game. Events are making this a little harder. It's not great to miss things, but it's even worse to talk yourself into crappy stuff, waste brainpower, or make yourself miserable second guessing.

Quote
Dan Brooks: "Losing is good. It let's you figure out what works, what doesn't, and how different combinations of cards interact."  thing is, i've never been great at figuring out precisely why i lost.  here's another core issue: i build this set of rules & logic for a game, and can never understand when it loses because that destroys everything i ever knew about the game.  i can look at the log, but i can't bring myself to believe that what my opponent did was really better if it's the opposite of what everyone here says.

When I watch your streams, I always feel like you're trying to read too much into the result of a single game. Like maybe you want there to be some definitive lesson or reason why the game went the way it did. But Dominion isn't really like that, it's this horrible mess of shuffles and choices and you can't figure out what the best play was, all you can do is say: "welp maybe I should have opened Remake instead of Jack, who knows". If you're really lucky you mess something up like missing a forced win, or you play your cards in an obviously wrong order, or your opponent beats your pants off, then the lesson is a little more clear. I know I screw something up every single game I play, if I can find at least one thing that I can do better next time, well that's enough for me, I don't need to unlock the secrets of the universe.

If part of the problem is anger, I think it's important to learn to laugh at your own misfortune, and always remember that your bad luck is probably brightening someone else's day! Or just be really lucky like me! If you can't enjoy drawing your Throne Room dead, why even play Dominion? That's what I think at least.

Quote
thanks again everyone, i like to see people engage with the real core-level stuff here as opposed to just dominion cards!

FWIW, IMO, etc. I think a lot of the high level stuff that people discuss is pretty useless. It can be fun to BS (I wrote this post after all) but really if you want to play better Dominion you have to eliminate mistakes from your play. And usually that mistake is some low level thing (you bought X but should have bought Y). Somehow through your experience you've got to build up an intuition for noticing these mistakes. As I learned the game, I just looked for mistakes everywhere: other player's videos, game reports, my own logs, my opponent's play.

I wouldn't hold the common wisdoms of any Dominion strategy writing in too high regard. Ideas don't spread in a forum because they're good, they spread because they're catchy or easy to convey and repeat. If you want to learn the ideas worth valuing, you have to learn in the game itself, either by playing or watching others play.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2016, 11:47:59 am by Mic Qsenoch »
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dedicateddan

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #131 on: June 06, 2016, 04:06:15 am »
+1

Seprix & Dingan, thank you for all your breakdowns!  thing is, i just can't believe someone like SCSN or Dan says "just screw it i'm doing this thing" in the opening.  like, there's gotta be a level where you're fully in control, no?

I typically say that when a couple of strategies are close in power level, it's not entirely clear how the game is going to play out, and I have to buy a card. And typically, you do want to go for aggressive thinning and cycling to control how the deck plays out.

Dan Brooks: here's another core issue: i build this set of rules & logic for a game, and can never understand when it loses because that destroys everything i ever knew about the game.  i can look at the log, but i can't bring myself to believe that what my opponent did was really better if it's the opposite of what everyone here says.

Maybe your opponent played better, maybe they just got really lucky. In any case, it can be quite useful to look at the game log, and ask questions like:

Looking at the board, what are the leading strategies?
What are the opening buys, the midgame buys?
Which buys do you agree with? Disagree?
Are the players building the predicted decks? Any surprises?
When did the players begin to green? Could they have built up more?
Were there any dud turns? Could they have been prevented?
How did the end game play out?
Looking back at the board, what do you think the best strategies are? How would you play it differently?

in today's league match, there was one board with heavy trashing (chapel + amulet) & grand market.  no villages or draw, but smugglers was there for a bit of gaining.  my plan was to open chapel/amulet, go all-out with trashing, then gain silvers with amulet to grab a grand market.  my opponent had a 5/2 and opened chapel/stash.  he had rather bad early draws while i had pretty good ones, but he bought a silver early to go along with that stash.  i think he then gained one silver from the amulet, and got a grand market the turn before i did.  this led to him winning the split 6-4, and i had no answer after that.  i don't know how to learn from a game like that, because i was winning the trashing race by a mile and that's supposed to be the most important thing.

Consider questions like:

Do you want 3 terminals or 2?
When do you make the switch from trashing to building?
When do you want smugglers? Always? Never? If you think your opponent is buying good cards?
What's the timing on greening? Do you want to add gold before greening? Is it possible to threaten an estate pileout?
How important is winning the trashing split? Getting the first grand market?

another game from that same match had a similar issue.  king's court/wharf was the big thing, and we both opened forager/ironworks (board had market square & village, along with training to power up those villages).  i got a 2nd forager during the 2nd shuffle, while my opponent stuck with one forager; they got wharves and training really early, while i didn't buy a wharf until turn 11.  i just thought whenever forager's the only trasher you want AT LEAST 2 of them, and had never seen a situation where 1 was the right number.  i guess the ironworks was what made 2nd forager bad?

Open Silver/Forager and plan to buy a Wharf on the first shuffle. Wharf is a good card.

i swear i've lost like 50 wharf games in this exact fashion but i never learn, because i can't imagine playing dominion in a way besides "trashtrashtrashTRASHYOUIDIOT KEEP TRASHING".  tournament, inheritance, governor...anything like that will destroy me, because people play in a way i think is SUPPOSED to lose and it works for those cards.

If your opponent plays a surprising strategy, play it yourself to see how it works.

thanks again everyone
:)
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Burning Skull

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #132 on: June 06, 2016, 04:34:57 am »
0

I think a lot of the high level stuff that people discuss is pretty useless.
Can't agree more!

It can be fun to BS

It surely can, how do you know?

Titandrake

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #133 on: June 06, 2016, 09:51:00 pm »
+6

I think a lot of the high level stuff that people discuss is pretty useless.
Can't agree more!

I kind of agree and disagree.

(Disclaimer: I've written multiple articles on high level strategy.)

(Disclaimer 2: This is going to be super BS-y)

(Disclaimer 3: I mean, REALLY bullshit. Warning you right now.)

I agree that Dominion is more about identifying mistakes, it's hard to get an intuition for this besides experience, and it's hard to articulate that intuition.

So why write high level strategy articles? A good high level strategy article should give a name to or raise awareness of a problem that people may not even recognize. They should introduce organizing principles that can help guide your thoughts about the game. Take "the Silver test". It's horribly outdated, but it forced people to ask themselves "is buying X instead of Silver a mistake?" Penultimate Province Rule was big for a while, and it introduces the question "is buying Province instead of Duchy a mistake?" A new player won't ask this question, and could misplay it several times before recognizing they're messing it up. PPR then generalizes to asking yourself about endgame VP decisions, a topic so varied that a detailed article is basically impossible. But, there's an article about endgame. It's not comprehensive, but it does a good job of explaining common endgame mistakes, and gets you started in the right direction.

When done well, articles articulate enough intuition to get the reader to recognize their mistakes and understand why they are mistakes. So no, I don't high level stuff is useless, it's just that it's very easy to cling to ideas or generalize your experience too broadly, and soon you're getting into debates about whether X is payload or not. And that's terribly useless - it's abstracted from the game by enough to have little relevance. Getting an answer to that question isn't likely to change the way you play the game. It's classification for classification's sake. Admirable in pure math, less so in card games.

I think the disconnect here is that many articles (including ones I've written) sound like dogma delivered from on high, when the truth is that they simply contain what we understand so far, which is certainly incomplete and possibly wrong.
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Awaclus

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #134 on: June 07, 2016, 05:19:01 am »
+1

When done well, articles articulate enough intuition to get the reader to recognize their mistakes and understand why they are mistakes. So no, I don't high level stuff is useless, it's just that it's very easy to cling to ideas or generalize your experience too broadly, and soon you're getting into debates about whether X is payload or not. And that's terribly useless - it's abstracted from the game by enough to have little relevance. Getting an answer to that question isn't likely to change the way you play the game. It's classification for classification's sake. Admirable in pure math, less so in card games.

I actually think that a discussion about the definition of payload is some of the more useful high level strategy discussion you can possibly have. In order to play engine games well, you need to understand the distinction between the concepts of payload and economy, and using the same word for both probably means you don't understand it well enough. That understanding is something that you can apply in most games, so it's actually useful. Although, you could argue that the difference between payload and economy isn't really a high level idea, because it's such a basic concept that you can and should learn pretty early on, but in practice, a lot of players who understand much more complex ideas still fail to differentiate between payload and economy.

Broad generalizations are the second most useful kind of high level strategy advice. Sure, they might be wrong some of the time, but at least they're actually useful the rest of the time, and if it's an important idea (like always buying two Urchins), it's better to stress it too much than too little.

High level advice that applies directly to a practical in-game situation without being a broad generalization does tend to be largely useless, because the practical situation in which it can be applied is going to occur maybe a few times every 1000 games, because the advice is so vague that you're none the wiser after reading it, or because following the advice makes so little difference that it gets completely obscured by shuffle luck.
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funkdoc

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #135 on: June 07, 2016, 09:25:46 am »
0

http://gokosalvager.com/static/logprettifier.html?http://dominion-game-logs.s3.amazonaws.com/game_logs/20160603/log.0.1464918655452.txt

You cannot play this Alchemist/Stables draw your deck thing and keep 7 Coppers while there's a Spice Merchant on the board. Get one over the 1st or 2nd Potion. On turn 19 you take a Duchy but there's no close 3 pile, you still aren't drawing your deck consistently and you haven't even bought a Province yet. Then you just keep greening aggressively which makes all your Lab variants awful. You can beat him with Province points, but you have to be able to buy Provinces consistently first.

ok, thanks for taking a look at these!  i'm never clear on what to do with stables, because in the past i've trashed too much copper and gotten dead hands from that.  i think part of it was also that in these junking games where you can't clean up the junk so well, i lose a lot when i focus on trashing copper and building; an opponent who just buys 50 silvers and duchies tends to beat me.  if something like sea hag or mountebank is on the board, i've developed this habit of just rushing duchies and trying to end the game before my opponent gets provinces.  it wins much more often than not in my normal ranked games, so i keep doing it.

i guess here the difference is the nonterminal draw being so strong, making it easier to get rid of the curses?

Quote
http://gokosalvager.com/static/logprettifier.html?http://dominion-game-logs.s3.amazonaws.com/game_logs/20160603/log.0.1464917761875.txt

Can't say I care much for the Ghost Ship, I like his Haggler a lot more. The attack hurts some, but between Vagrant/Cart/SP there's a lot here to mitigate it. Presence of Vagrant makes the Haggler pretty safe and then of course you can keep feeding in Cartographers and Markets as you buy Provinces. Not a fan of either player's Duchess buy, yours is a little better than his. Do not buy a Duchy turn 18, the game is not ending and you aren't even behind in points, get a Cartographer. Again, you start scrambling for points while there's a stack of Provinces waiting for some guy with a nice consistent deck to pick them up.

yep, you've caught on to another little habit of mine.  i practically ALWAYS get ghost ship in the first 2 shuffles, because that early it seems like the best attack in the game to me...and the early game is supposed to be more important than the late-game, no?  i guess here the main issue is that the counters are so cheap, which isn't normally the case.

also, i honestly forgot that haggler lets you get $2s with scrying pools. =P

re: greening, i get really scared of someone with all 8 gardens.  like, there's no way i can get all the provinces before they end the game, right?  and i figure i would need more points than provinces to beat that.  this is something i don't have much experience with, as we tend to mirror gardens or both ignore it.

EDIT: regarding your other post...i'm really more interested in psychological things beyond the game itself.  i'll sound like Legendary Game Designer David Sirlin for a second here, but i've long viewed competitive games as tests of ideologies and a way to prepare you for bigger things in real life.  if i lose, it must be that my core ideology was weaker on some level.

that's why i try to go into these big questions from individual games.  well that, and i'm used to a scene where 2-out-of-3 is supposed to tell you who the better player is; if it doesn't, people there think it means the game is too random/scrubby and badly designed.  intellectually i know that's probably wrong, but it's hard to shake that!
« Last Edit: June 07, 2016, 09:54:17 am by funkdoc »
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Mic Qsenoch

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #136 on: June 07, 2016, 09:31:15 am »
0

re: greening, i get really scared of someone with all 8 gardens.  like, there's no way i can get all the provinces before they end the game, right?  i figure i would need more points than provinces to beat that.  this is something i don't have much experience with, as we tend to mirror gardens or both ignore it.

The big thing is that if the game isn't ending right now, you will score fewer points by the end of the game by aggressively dipping for Duchies/Estates rather than building until you can get Provinces. At least that's what it looked like to me in those games, they both turned into very long games.
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smcrtorchs

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #137 on: June 09, 2016, 05:38:01 am »
+1




FWIW, IMO, etc. I think a lot of the high level stuff that people discuss is pretty useless. It can be fun to BS (I wrote this post after all) but really if you want to play better Dominion you have to eliminate mistakes from your play. And usually that mistake is some low level thing (you bought X but should have bought Y).


I strongly believe that the very top players can see much easier the possible game states after x shuffles of the game, whether they do it consciously or subconsciously and this is what differentiates them from the rest. Am I wrong to this? I believe it is important to also have this in mind along with the low level things, if you want to become a top player as funkdoc does.
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teamrocketgrunt

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #138 on: June 09, 2016, 06:20:04 am »
+3

I strongly believe that the very top players can see much easier the possible game states after x shuffles of the game, whether they do it consciously or subconsciously and this is what differentiates them from the rest. Am I wrong to this? I believe it is important to also have this in mind along with the low level things, if you want to become a top player as funkdoc does.

You are not wrong at all. I would compare the learning process to exploring a giant forest. If you want to travel through, you need a goddamn map first. Otherwise, it gets frustrating. That's why heuristics are good and that's why strategy articles are good. They are the map that you use. However, after a while you realize that relying solely on your map becomes bad. It might be out of date and the forest can change. Plus, unless you're Chuck Norris, maps don't save you from bear attacks.

Which is why you have to venture off the beaten paths. In the end, nothing is as valuable as actually getting to know your environment and familiarizing with it. I agree with smcrtorchs that top level players can say "screw it, I'm doing XY here", because they have internalized what most other players feel the need to actively think about. Problem is, what they have internalized, is not a sum of three-hundred strategy articles and the principles incorporated, but the experience from continuously doing what looks good to them (I am not arguing that this knowledge is based on some founding principles, though) and processing the results. I always tried to dissect boards (thinners, gainers, villages, draw etc.), but recently I have been trying to do it less. It's been way more fun playing what jumps out at me and then sucking at it than playing something I thought I carefully discerned and than sucking at that anyway  ;D.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2016, 06:47:29 am by teamrocketgrunt »
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smcrtorchs

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #139 on: June 10, 2016, 08:31:40 am »
+2

I will get a bit out of topic and share a bit of my past while I also try to reply. I had no map when I was learning dominion, as I did not knew of this community. It took me much more time I guess, to learn what others could learn by reading. By the time I was introduced to the forum (I believe by Jeebus during a game we played on goko), most of the articles were of no real help.

Looking at what you do (trying to obtain a more "feel" approach for dominion) certainly sounds a step towards the right direction and is something I probably have not worked on.
Intuition can work along dissecting boards. It is not either the one or the other. I was introduced to the power of intuition from a friend when we both played corridor which is a really fun game to try. He was able to somehow "see" what was correct and what was not. Eventually he helped me to understand how he was doing it and I was getting much better with it.

The other game that I was able to use intuition was backgammon, but it happened in a very strange way. I have studied the game, putting many many hours in to it, but I always did it either from a calculations point of view, or trying to analyze the factors that affect a position, or learning what works and what not by heart, even memorizing positions and winning percentages and so on (serious players do so in backgammon). However it was not until i stopped playing backgammon that I developed an intuitive understanding of the game and it happened on its own. I have no idea how or why it happened. I can only say that it helps me greatly to keep my level of play close to the level I had before I stopped studying.

Something else that people on this forum might find strange is that in backgammon the best ratio of studying/playing if you want to get better is 90% studying and only 10% of playing. There is no reason to believe that this ratio is pretty different at other games including dominion and this simply means that if you choose the "I will learn by playing method" you will learn a lot slower than if you tried to study the game. The closest I can think of however to studying dominion, is studying top player's logs assuming you can indeed understand well what is happening there and why.
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Seprix

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #140 on: June 10, 2016, 10:54:46 am »
0

As far as I am aware, Backgammon is like chess, where there is no/little luck involved. Bad draws happen in Dominion, and even a good strategy can lose to a poor one.

How do you really study Dominion anyways? Reading logs isn't all that helpful, as the situations are going to be different every time because of shuffles. If there really is a way, sign me up! I'd love to study Dominion much more.

The best three things that can be done in a nutshell with Dominion is how to end the game while you are ahead, have a plan to go about it, and learn how to minimize your mistakes.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2016, 10:58:14 am by Seprix »
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funkdoc

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #141 on: June 10, 2016, 12:38:23 pm »
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what i thought would be the magic bullet was sorting boards into kinda broad "types", and looking at "matchups" between particular cards (that's the fighting-game player in me again!)

an example of the first one that i still don't have a good handle on would be "big draw engine with stonemason as the only gainer".  if you can't gain $6s with stonemason, when do you buy a gold just to turn into 2 duchies at the end?

an example "matchup" i struggle with is cultist vs. ambassador.  i just thought cultist-BM would steamroll, but i've lost badly to people who get ambassador there.  just assume a 2-card kingdom in this case.

this has been the most effective thing for me thus far, but i'd like to hear other thoughts!

Mic Qsenoch

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #142 on: June 10, 2016, 01:00:38 pm »
+3

what i thought would be the magic bullet was sorting boards into kinda broad "types", and looking at "matchups" between particular cards (that's the fighting-game player in me again!)

an example of the first one that i still don't have a good handle on would be "big draw engine with stonemason as the only gainer".  if you can't gain $6s with stonemason, when do you buy a gold just to turn into 2 duchies at the end?

an example "matchup" i struggle with is cultist vs. ambassador.  i just thought cultist-BM would steamroll, but i've lost badly to people who get ambassador there.  just assume a 2-card kingdom in this case.

this has been the most effective thing for me thus far, but i'd like to hear other thoughts!

I'm not a fan of figuring out the possible things on a board and comparing them. The trap here is that it elevates crappy strategies to the level of a good one, even thinking about them as comparable can heavily inflate a weak strategy's relevance in your mind. Everyone immediately notices Workshop/Gardens and suddenly it's an option but it's terrible and shouldn't even be considered unless it's actually jumping out because the board is weak.

Ideal case is that something on the board jumps out immediately and I can see the kind of deck I'd like to build. Then I can worry about what openings and early game cards I need to focus on. In that case I don't need to spend any more time thinking about the other possibilities except in the context of "how will I beat that awful thing up if my opponent chooses it?'

But the ideal case doesn't always happen and sometimes we have to consider our options. My view here is that if I really can't distinguish between two choices (after a little thought), I shouldn't keep wasting effort trying to figure it out, just pick one and then focus on how to play it rather than keep worrying about the other thing.

Another potential issue with comparing things is that it immediately makes you think they aren't compatible, which is often not the case.

The two examples are so context dependent I can't imagine there's anything useful to say about them. Uh, sometimes you want to buy the Gold? Sometimes you don't? Cultist vs Ambassador doesn't seem like the kind of thing you can make a general rule about, those other 8 kingdom cards will decide everything.
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funkdoc

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #143 on: June 10, 2016, 01:32:49 pm »
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what i've done is have these 2-card matchups as a "base" and and adjust that around the rest of the kingdom cards.

i mean, i think it's really important to know that a minion stack beats a deck full of apothecaries if neither has any strong help from the rest of the kingdom.  those two cards don't really work with each other, so that's a case where thinking of it as a matchup seems good?  that's what i'm getting at here, idk

Mic Qsenoch

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #144 on: June 10, 2016, 02:00:57 pm »
+2

what i've done is have these 2-card matchups as a "base" and and adjust that around the rest of the kingdom cards.

i mean, i think it's really important to know that a minion stack beats a deck full of apothecaries if neither has any strong help from the rest of the kingdom.  those two cards don't really work with each other, so that's a case where thinking of it as a matchup seems good?  that's what i'm getting at here, idk

My feeling is that these comparisons just don't make a very good base, too much context is removed (most of the kingdom!). I don't really care at all what the behavior of Minion vs Apothecary is in a vacuum, it certainly doesn't seem like critical information to me. I mean right now if you asked me if I would go Minion or Apothecary on a random board with no other information, I would just say "no clue". And I can think of some cases where I'd still get both, I played a game the other day where I did, I'm not positive it was right but it didn't seem too bad.
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DG

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #145 on: June 10, 2016, 03:46:42 pm »
+1

what i've done is have these 2-card matchups as a "base" and and adjust that around the rest of the kingdom cards.

i mean, i think it's really important to know that a minion stack beats a deck full of apothecaries if neither has any strong help from the rest of the kingdom.  those two cards don't really work with each other, so that's a case where thinking of it as a matchup seems good?  that's what i'm getting at here, idk

What I'd look at here is how the cards interact and see how they fit into the kingdom. So here the questions could be - When to buy the potion? How will the potion change coin income? Is there an extra buy so that it isn't a straight choice between minion or apothecary? How does trashing fit into the deck? Will it be problem to use the minion attack after drawing coppers with apothecary? Will the apothecary be of use in ordering the top of the draw deck? Will there be a problem managing shuffles? Will there be competition over key cards like apothecary and minion? How will green cards eventually fit into this deck? This isn't a checklist, it's more of an awareness.
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Titandrake

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #146 on: June 11, 2016, 01:43:52 am »
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Card vs card matchups don't seem very useful when 1) there are 200+ cards meaning 40000+ matchups which is basically not worth learning and 2) you can't "main" a card, meaning you can't get away with knowing only the matchups involving A + B + C, where A/B/C are your mains.

If you really want to treat cards like fighting game characters, a more useful thinking pattern is to treat each card as a unique collection of strengths and weaknesses.
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smcrtorchs

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #147 on: June 11, 2016, 05:04:19 am »
+2

As far as I am aware, Backgammon is like chess, where there is no/little luck involved. Bad draws happen in Dominion, and even a good strategy can lose to a poor one.

How do you really study Dominion anyways? Reading logs isn't all that helpful, as the situations are going to be different every time because of shuffles. If there really is a way, sign me up! I'd love to study Dominion much more.

The best three things that can be done in a nutshell with Dominion is how to end the game while you are ahead, have a plan to go about it, and learn how to minimize your mistakes.

Backgammon is probably more luck based than dominion, as it includes dices which roll. But this is a small detail. There are always things you can study, the question is how much you get out of them. This was why I only mentioned studying logs. If you understand what is really happening, then this is definitely much faster than seeing videos and maybe the fastest of all.

However studying should be based on each person separately and his habits and needs. For dominion it could probably also include:

1. Reading material. The help thread of this forum is really good I think.
2. podcasts and videos
2. Studying games.
3. Asking questions to others.
4. Testing scenarios by playing them out (takes time, but might be necessary, if after the above you still have doubt and care to check it). If Stef and SCSN implement the "play game from here feature", this will become much easier in the new version.
5. However at the moment you can test opening scenarios pretty quickly and there are plenty of those.
Experimenting with units (actions, cards, coins) etc. and trying to understand the impact of an extra or a less unit in different cases and scenarios.
6. Writing down your mistakes in each game and analyze them.
7. Try to guess more or less the whole game in shuffles, especially for games which are like rushes or hermit megaturns, or big money something (I chose these categories because they are easier to start with) and write what you have found out.
8. Try to find the differences a small thing makes when you develop strategies. An easy example here is using similar, but different cards for the same strategy over and over again and see how this affects the game. Write down what you find.
9. The most important one, revise everything at your own pace, but tactically.

The question is how much you get out of each and what mix you should use. This is different for every player and his level and it also depends on your goal. Is your goal to get better as fast as possible; is it to have fun while you become a bit better; As a general guideline, of you want to improve faster, I believe that as you progress you want to read and watch less videos and study more logs and do more from the 5 to 9 things.
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Seprix

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #148 on: June 16, 2016, 04:32:30 pm »
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Ah, here's a mistake I still do constantly. I can't beat players like Heisenberg and HvHosenfeld (or whatever his name was) for this reason. I play way too fast. Even if I get a nice quick advantage, I can blow it by not playing as well as I should be. I'm in the same boat as you now, funkdoc. I can smoke everyone but the best, but the best can just tear into me like I just started the game. :p
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funkdoc

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Re: funkdoc's journey to 5k (& beyond)
« Reply #149 on: June 17, 2016, 12:27:18 pm »
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i've actually worked my way back up a lot since then, hovering around 5k right now.  IIRC i have a pretty good record vs. the players you mentioned, but i've gotten smoked by vsiewnar & AI recently.

i really, really need to remind myself to stop playing when i get into that mood where i just want to play money every board, that might be my biggest hurdle atm
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