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Author Topic: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.1: $3 cards  (Read 42205 times)

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jotheonah

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #75 on: January 09, 2012, 04:59:32 pm »
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Great Hall is a soft-counter to Fortune Teller and sometimes Bureaucrat.
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brokoli

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #76 on: January 09, 2012, 05:10:46 pm »
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Transmute can be amazing with Great Hall : You gain a duchy and a gold. It's like when you buy a duchy with hoard.
Trade route is nice when Great hall is on the board.
And... of course, Silk Road.
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DrHades

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #77 on: January 10, 2012, 08:57:30 am »
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One note I'd correct on the list: Great Hall has several cards other than IW that it pairs up well with; I doubt it changes rankings a whit, but it can be better than silver pretty early with some of the following combos:
Scrying pool: GH is a free net card, given the shortage of 3 coin self-replacing cards this often the best 3 coin buy in a scrying pool game
Scout: See scrying pool; though scout tends to lack the drawing power to make even GH/Scout viable on its own.
Crossroads: Another free + card, but it can also be used multiple times
Cartographer/Apothecary (Spy/Pearl Diver/etc).: When you know you can control the top of your deck, GH can be a cheap way to draw your next engine card into hand and leave your cartographers and apothecaries to dig deeper into the deck, again most any self replacing card will work here, but again there are very few that are as cheap as GH.

On a larger note, in 2 player GH is a quick pile to empty for your third pile. It's cheap and it only takes 8 buys.

I really like Scout+Crossroad+"green that do someting good" combo, but to be honest, it is really not very good. You need many cards to pull that combo and unless there is Great Hall AND Harem it is really not worth it...

You are right with Scrying Pool, but still - I think Wishing Well, Hamlet or Menagerie is much better than Great Hall for Scrying Pool engine...
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jomini

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #78 on: January 10, 2012, 01:36:46 pm »
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The thing with cross roads & scout is more situational. If you need those cards regardless (e.g. cross roads is the only +action out there and you are playing estate tennis), it becomes a better card.

Of the self-replacing 3 coin or less cards the ones better than GH for a pool deck are:
menage
village (only if you still need +action)
ww
hamlet (only if you still need +action or +buy)
oasis
warehouse
scheme
pawn

argueably:
pearl diver

sure, most all of those are likely better with pool decks, but my criteria was better than silver and GH has a number of times where it is most likely a better addition to your deck than silver.

As I said, I doubt this changes the rankings, but there are situational uses for GH and I think it earns it middling ranking honestly.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #79 on: January 10, 2012, 08:53:24 pm »
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I haven't read the whole thread, so I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I think it would have been cool to include Silver in this list (and obviously Estate in the $2 list etc). Where would people put Silver here?
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DrHades

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #80 on: January 10, 2012, 09:05:32 pm »
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I haven't read the whole thread, so I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I think it would have been cool to include Silver in this list (and obviously Estate in the $2 list etc). Where would people put Silver here?

I would put it right under my top8 (Ambassador, Watehouse, Fishing Village, Masquerade, Swindler, Scheme, Steward, Menagerie). Silver is very good and universal card, I buy it in almost every game...
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #81 on: January 10, 2012, 11:47:42 pm »
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Watchtower : I agree with Dr.Hades about this. Watchtower is probably the best defense against attacks. But when there aren't attacks, or when your opponent doesn't attack you, Watchtower is totally useless.
Library is really good, but Watchtower is weak. Even against a militia... it's risky.

Scheme : I put it in #9, but now I think I overrated scheme. Good, but never awesome. Like spy. I don't remember any game where scheme was important. The only exception is with King's court.

Swindler : The most overrated attack in the game, IMO.

Ambassador/Masquerade : Excellent cards, but I'm surprised to see so many high ranks. I find Menagerie, Tunnel, Fishing village, Warehouse and Steward much better !

Lookout : I agree about the rank. But... It's very, very rare, when you draw 3 provinces/colonies with lookout. Never happened for me. Sometimes I trashed a gold, but never a province/colony.

I have some bones to respectfully pick.

Watchtower is an excellent card.  It has a very decent engine potential, its topdeck ability is far from useless and it can pull off some tricky stunts.  University, Hamlet, Mint, Alchemist and many other cards sync up great with it.  The defensive capabilities are the icing, not the other way around.

Scheme is a very very good card unless it isn't.

Swindler is probably, IMO, the strongest $3 attack other than Ambassador.  I know the competition is thin, and luck plays a factor when using it, but it has the potential to cause some serious problems.

Ambassador/Masq are the elite $3 cards and probably would remain so if they cost $4.
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TheMathProf

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #82 on: January 11, 2012, 12:04:15 am »
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I haven't read the whole thread, so I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I think it would have been cool to include Silver in this list (and obviously Estate in the $2 list etc). Where would people put Silver here?

It's a little hard to rank Silver, IMO.  I think it's very hard to go through a game without buying a Silver.  But I think most of the $3 cards fall into one of two camps:

  • I should buy Silver before buying one of these cards (i.e. Village, commonly)
  • I should buy Silver after buying one of these cards (i.e. Ambassador)

But I've found that buying Silver usually happens, and it's just a matter of when...
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dondon151

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #83 on: January 11, 2012, 12:17:17 am »
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Scheme is a very very good card unless it isn't.

Have to agree with this. In kingdoms with attacks, Scheme is basically an attack that costs $3. Especially true for attacks that don't give +cards, where it's impossible to draw Scheme dead. It's powerful in circumstances where you need a combo to draw your whole deck, and that's really just scratching the surface.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #84 on: January 11, 2012, 02:06:47 am »
+1

Swindler : The most overrated attack in the game, IMO.
As I mentioned in my article about opening terminals, swindler is massively stronger in 2-player than in 3/4-player. In 2-player it is obscenely strong. If you hit one of your opponents key cards early, it's like a free win. Early in the game, close to 10% of your cards are critical, and losing one puts you impossibly behind. So swindler has a 10% chance of free win, and the rest of the time is a decent attack. If you add a 10% chance of free win to any attack -- even thief -- it becomes a pretty good card...

I haven't read the whole thread, so I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but I think it would have been cool to include Silver in this list (and obviously Estate in the $2 list etc). Where would people put Silver here?
I don't think it makes sense to include silver, since it's always in the supply. I guess it has to be #1. I buy masq in maybe 6% of games (the rest of the time it's not even in the supply), and silver in like 85% of games, so I buy silver way more often, by a landslide...

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Qvist

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #85 on: January 11, 2012, 08:33:59 am »
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Minor nitpick: the statistical term is "outliers," not "outliners." Good work nonetheless.
Oh, thanks for the hint. I seem to have mixed it up. I'll change that.

I've gotta say, these community card rankings turned out really great, it worked much better than I thought it would.

I'd bet that Qvist's decision to weight by isotropic rank is really helping to keep the numbers in line.  (That and the readers here are generally pretty good at Dominion to begin with.)
I was concerned too, especially in the beginning with few entries, where the order was very strange. With better players sending in their lists it seemed clear to me to make a weighted average. In the end, I can say it didn't change much, a card change here and there. It was more important that many experienced players had sent in their lists, so thanks for all your lists again.

So, the biggest talking points seem to be Scheme, Tunnel, Steward and Swindler.
Scheme: I agree with dondon151, making it a cheap attack is great. And it is a good defense agains Young Witch. It is a nice addition to all decks, it's not outstanding, but deserves its high rank.
Tunnel: Many seem to forget the 2 VP for $3. And that you can generate Golds too is great. Especially if you'd buy the Tunnel enablers (like Embassy or Young Witch) either way.
Steward: It is a very good card, but I was a little surprised it got #4 too. I expected to rank #7 or #6, but it seems that the half Chapel that is still good afterwards is very powerful and liked, even for the top players.
Swindler: It's swingy, but can be devastating. I recently got crushed by Swindler, although I had 5/2 with opening Mountebank.

I'm sorry that the last list update happened already a few days ago, but I will post the first $4 cards in a few hours.

DrHades

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $4 cards Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #86 on: January 11, 2012, 10:02:29 am »
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I don't think it makes sense to include silver, since it's always in the supply. I guess it has to be #1. I buy masq in maybe 6% of games (the rest of the time it's not even in the supply), and silver in like 85% of games, so I buy silver way more often, by a landslide...

Well that depends on how exactly are you comparing 2 cards. I do it more or less by 2 criterias:

1. How often is a good idea to buy this card when it's on the board (here Silver stands good - I think in most games you do a good job buying some).

2. How often is devastating not buying this card (here Silver is not so great - finding alternative strategy which doesn't need a Silver is often easy).

I agree that the list is better without common cards, but I think it is possible to rank them. Comparing 2 cards only by how often you buy them doesn't seem right to me...

I'm sorry that the last list update happened already a few days ago, but I will post the first $4 cards in a few hours.

Yay!  ;D
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Quadell

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Ambassador vs. Fortune Teller
« Reply #87 on: April 06, 2012, 02:45:06 pm »
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I find it fascinating that Ambassador, a $3 attack, is listed as the best $3 card in the game, while Fortune Teller, another $3 attack, is fourth from the bottom. (Qvist even calls Ambassador "the best attack relative to its cost" while calling Fortune Teller "the worst attack in the game".) And yet the simulations at Dominiate seem to tell a very different story.

When you play the predefined "Double Ambassador" strategy against a "Double Fortune Teller" strategy (exactly the same, but replace "Ambassador" with "Fortune Teller" in the code), the Fortune Teller strategy wins 55% of the time. In fact, when I experiment with other strategies (buying only one, or buying three plus Laboratories, etc.), Fortune Teller seems to beat Ambassador every time. What gives? Why would the community judge Ambassador as so much better, when it loses in a head to head match-up?  :o
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #88 on: April 06, 2012, 02:54:52 pm »
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Ambassador rewards small decks, creativity, engines, etc.  These things don't simulate well, and you didn't really attempt to simulate them at all.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #89 on: April 06, 2012, 02:56:32 pm »
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I find it fascinating that Ambassador, a $3 attack, is listed as the best $3 card in the game, while Fortune Teller, another $3 attack, is fourth from the bottom. (Qvist even calls Ambassador "the best attack relative to its cost" while calling Fortune Teller "the worst attack in the game".) And yet the simulations at Dominiate seem to tell a very different story.

When you play the predefined "Double Ambassador" strategy against a "Double Fortune Teller" strategy (exactly the same, but replace "Ambassador" with "Fortune Teller" in the code), the Fortune Teller strategy wins 55% of the time. In fact, when I experiment with other strategies (buying only one, or buying three plus Laboratories, etc.), Fortune Teller seems to beat Ambassador every time. What gives? Why would the community judge Ambassador as so much better, when it loses in a head to head match-up?  :o
Because you never play a game with just 1 card :) Ambassador's biggest strength is in building a big, rolling engine, while stopping your opponent from doing anything too great at the same time.
Actually, even that surprises me though - ambassador is not good for money, but it's not THAT bad, and fortune teller's nothing special. So I'm guessing it's not playing it totally right. Also, for BM, you probably only want one ambassador. Now, why is there a pre-defined double amb strat? I don't know

Tables

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #90 on: April 06, 2012, 02:59:39 pm »
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There are a few possible reasons. as WW has pointed out. But I have double Ambassador winning 53-42 in Geronimoo's simulator against the optimised Fortune Teller Bot (and the Ambassador bot isn't optimised). So there's something going on in Dominiate.
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...spin-offs are still better for all of the previously cited reasons.
But not strictly better, because the spinoff can have a different cost than the expansion.
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Quadell

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #91 on: April 06, 2012, 08:50:12 pm »
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In a hand with one Estate and two Copper, Dominiate's Ambassadors return the one estate rather than the coppers. Is this optimal? Otherwise, I don't see a problem.

I don't think Fortune Teller is great, but I suspect it's undervalued in games where there's not a great engine to build. It soundly beats most other $3 "Silver plus" cards (e.g. Woodcutter) in a head-to-head buy-one-card-only matchup. I know real games aren't played that way, but in cases where you need +$2 terminals (Duke rush, Hunting Party, etc.) I think it's a solid choice.

And Ambassador may just be somewhat overrated. Assuming Dominiate's Ambassador play isn't broken, I can't find an easy-to-simulate strategy that buys Ambassadors and consistently beats an identical strategy that buys Fortune Teller instead. (For instance, buying Libraries and Caravans and one Ambassador does slightly worse than one buying Libraries and Caravans and one Fortune Teller.)
« Last Edit: April 06, 2012, 08:57:55 pm by Quadell »
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #92 on: April 06, 2012, 09:16:09 pm »
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1) Fortune Teller is a card that is just played, then has it's effect, that's it. There's no thinking in how to play the card. With Ambassador, there is, and the more thinking in playing the card, the worse it's simulated.

2) Libraries and Caravans loses to BMU. And in Geronimoo's simulator (which is generally more accurate) I have a skeleton Library/Caravan +Ambassador bot winning 66/32 against an equivalent Fortune Teller one. In fact, the Fortune Teller one loses to such a bot that buys a silver instead about 57/38! (The Ambassador bot wins 39/57).

3) The fact is, Fortune Teller is generally a poor way to use your terminal action, and in fact against Ambassador (which gets rid of green card) it's even worse. Bot comparison isn't the way to go here. It's the assessment of how well each card does in real games, with real situations, and ambassador almost always needs an answer - be it heavy trashing, reaction to gains, or - more often than not - getting an ambassador of your own. Fortune Teller, on the other hand, is pretty ignorable. It's a terminal silver that often gives your opponent a 4 card hand next turn. Wow.

If you really want to do more comparisons, I strongly suggest using Geronimoo's simulator. It's a lot more accurate for tricky to play cards, although it's by no means optimal.
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...spin-offs are still better for all of the previously cited reasons.
But not strictly better, because the spinoff can have a different cost than the expansion.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #93 on: April 07, 2012, 04:26:34 am »
+1

Ambassador is fine when there's some engine potential. If you win the Ambassador war, you'll have a thin deck enabling your engine while your opponent's engine is going to fail due to the bloated deck. And there's a cumulative effect because your engine will allow more frequent Ambassadoring. All of this is just not happening in a big money game. Extra Coppers and Estates don't hurt so much while thin big money decks are actually hurt a lot by greening.
So the Ambassador actually simulates quite well for Big Money games, but it's just not very good in those decks.
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DStu

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #94 on: April 11, 2012, 01:09:43 am »
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Dominiates Priority for Ambassador is
Code: [Select]
"[Curse, 2]"
      "[Curse, 1]"
      "[Curse, 0]"
      # Handle a silly case:
      "[Ambassador, 2]"
      "[Estate, 2]"
      "[Estate, 1]"
      # Make sure we have at least $5 in the deck, including if we buy a Silver.
      "[Copper, 2]" if my.getTreasureInHand() < 3 and my.getTotalMoney() >= 5
      "[Copper, 2]" if my.getTreasureInHand() >= 5
      "[Copper, 2]" if my.getTreasureInHand() == 3 and my.getTotalMoney() >= 7
      "[Copper, 1]" if my.getTreasureInHand() < 3 and my.getTotalMoney() >= 4
      "[Copper, 1]" if my.getTreasureInHand() >= 4
      "[Estate, 0]"
      "[Copper, 0]"
      "[Potion, 2]"
      "[Potion, 1]"
This can surely be optimized...
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Marin

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #95 on: May 27, 2012, 01:18:41 pm »
+1

I am really disagree with develop and black market!
You need in 90% of games buy black market because they are almost cards like goons, wharf, kc , mountebank.... (for me Black market is in the top 8)
And develop, ok it s often a bad card... but when they are cost 7 cards for example, it become really strong and even without it s not so bad to trash a cost 4 cards for a wharf village(on the deck!)...
And moreover cards like chancellor or fortune teller are so useless, i don t understand how they can be behind develop...
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #96 on: May 27, 2012, 01:21:33 pm »
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before* (develop is behind fortune teller and chancellor)
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #97 on: May 27, 2012, 01:22:44 pm »
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I am really disagree with develop and black market!
You need in 90% of games buy black market because they are almost cards like goons, wharf, kc , mountebank.... (for me Black market is in the top 8)
And develop, ok it s often a bad card... but when they are cost 7 cards for example, it become really strong and even without it s not so bad to trash a cost 4 cards for a wharf village(on the deck!)...
And moreover cards like chancellor or fortune teller are so useless, i don t understand how they can be behind develop...

Black Market is so low because
1) It makes games annoying
2) It takes way too long to get the Black Marketed cards when you should be focusing on cards already on the table
3) Certain cards pop up in the Black Market which are useless by themselves, like Treasure Map or Fool's Gold
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #98 on: May 27, 2012, 01:24:16 pm »
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before* (develop is behind fortune teller and chancellor)

And Fortune Teller and Chancellor are useful more often than Develop.  When Fortune Teller and Chancellor are good, they are very good.  Develop is always kinda meh.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): $3 cards
« Reply #99 on: May 27, 2012, 01:32:32 pm »
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before* (develop is behind fortune teller and chancellor)

And Fortune Teller and Chancellor are useful more often than Develop.  When Fortune Teller and Chancellor are good, they are very good.  Develop is always kinda meh.

I disagree. When Develop is good, it is very good. It is just good so very rarely that it's such a terrible card on average. Fortune Teller and Chancellor are never that special, but they're always a terminal silver with a benefit for $3, which if you have the actions or no better terminal available, is better than a Silver.
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