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WanderingWinder

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Re: Duke
« Reply #25 on: February 10, 2012, 09:36:47 am »
0

Looks like I'll actually have to edit this thing sooner rather than later. It will have to wait until tonight though.
Most of the points here are good. Some I rather disagree with.

jomini

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Re: Duke
« Reply #26 on: February 10, 2012, 12:37:06 pm »
+1

You'll do it when he opens potion even if there are other Alchemy cards on the board he could be going for?

Well, maybe. Certainly as soon as he buys transmute, I know what he's doing. If he's waiting to draw a transmute with an action that he's willing to part ways with, and I'm just waiting to draw five coin, I'll win that race, and even if I just tie it, I'll certainly win the Duke split afterwards.

I've tried to make transmute/duke work a bunch (because I want transmute to be good for.... something...) and I always get destroyed. But simulation data or a log would persuade me otherwise!

Transmute is not a bad buy as a consolation price. Yes its slow. Yes it is a terminal. Yes it is the crappiest trasher in the game ... but it can gain you a late game duchy and it can change the composition of your deck for stuff that really cares about card type (i.e. venture, scrying pool, enemy tribute, etc.).  If you miss your target card (e.g. familiar, university, scrying pool), it often is better than the crappy 2 coin or nothing options you have with a potion.

In the appropriate engine (e.g. scrying pool) you can crunch copper into transmutes and then you can have a late game break for mass duchies & buying up dukes. Other engines allow you to use transmutes to keep the cards flowing - festival/watchtower will allow you to transmute coppers & estates to draw more cards and can allow for things like single turn gain 4 duchies. Menage and some +action card can also make good use of transmute to increase hand diversity; e.g. I've done university/festival/menage/transmute and the transmutes can suck up actions to kill coppers so your menages can keep hitting & drawing what you really need - university/festival.

I'm extremely sceptical of simulator results here because transmute is a helper card. You can't win with it alone, but it can be very good as a helper card on many boards. E.g. familiar with no other curse trashing & you hit 2 coin 1 p on turn 3; scrying pool & bazaar. So in order to actually simulate those you have to have some fairly complicated play & buy rules about what to hit when. Do you turn the estate into a gold or the curse into nothing? When do you buy dukes in a bazaar/SP deck, and when do you cannabalize the deck for mass duchies? Let alone something like a menage deck.

Long story short, transmute engines can be a viable way to mass aquire duchies OR to go for provinces (or even colonies). Depending on how the game is shaping up they can give you a fighting chance after you've gotten unlucky or they can offer a method to counter  an opponent (e.g. you can just acquire duchies to transmute to gold so the duke player is suffering heavily for points). They are also easy to acuire in mass late game and to play many of them the turn you get them (e.g. TR -> transmute -> lab -> TR/TR -> trans/trans = 4 duchies). There are a lot of potential options out there.
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jotheonah

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Re: Duke
« Reply #27 on: February 10, 2012, 02:52:58 pm »
0

I was thinking about highway/bridge megaturns with Duke/Duchy. One of the key interactions with cost reducers is that, assuming you have the +buy, they're better for buying lots of cheaper things than 1 expensive thing. So one Highway drops my Province from $8 to $7, but my 2 Duchies from $10 to 8. Two Highways and that Province and those Duchies cost the same ($6). Three and the Duchies are cheaper. Four Highways and you can buy 4 Duchies for the cost of a Province.

So I would add cost-reducers to the "works with."
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WanderingWinder

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Re: Duke
« Reply #28 on: February 10, 2012, 10:55:23 pm »
0

Okay, edited a couple things, added some spacing.
Geronimoo, that's a bit of an overgeneralization. Not that it's wrong exactly.
GendoIkari: exactly! You WANT coppers, so trashing them is baaaaaaad.
vidicate: I'm the one saying 'duh'...
Everyone: I'm thoroughly unconvinced that transmute has any speed or staying power, or ability to actually get to the dukes themselves, without a huge amount of help, anyway, which probably precludes dukes fairly well in the first place. Positive synergy? Probably, but transmute's so bad anyway, I'd not try counting on it here.
Multiplayer.... more comments coming tomorrow, but it would need a whole nother section, and I have some advice/thoughts, but I'm not an expert there.

WanderingWinder

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Re: Duke
« Reply #29 on: February 11, 2012, 12:22:02 pm »
0

So, the entire article as currently constituted is based on two-player games. Things change big-time with more players. I'm not an expert, but there's some light I can shed.
First of all, duchy/duke tends to be a lot weaker in these situations. That's something to get out of the way right off the bat. The big reason for this is goes back to one of the first things I say in the article, that the game is a lot longer in non-mirrors, because you've got one person going for provinces, the other going for colonies, and so neither end condition gets met very soon. That's sorta true in multiplayer too, but not nearly as much. Province player doesn't need to get all 8 by himself anymore.
Ok, so looking at 3 player, if we've got 2 players going province and 1 duchy/duke, we get that we'd expect 6 provinces each for the province player, which hey, that's fewer points. So you only need 6 duchies and 3 dukes to overtake that. Unfortunately, most pretty bland, standard decks can get to 6 provinces without that much trouble, and barely need to change their basic game plan to beef up. Also, it's very likely you'll get a 7/5 split on the provinces, and you need to overcome that 7 to win. So you end up often needing almost just as many duchy/dukes as in 2-player, but you've got less time. Anyway, still possible with support (you need support now though), but green a touch sooner and duke>duchy a little sooner.
If you have 2 players going for duchy/duke, then province player getting even a single duchy is a pretty big deal. He also has access to a lot more provinces overall. And because there are only 12 duchies for the 2 players, they're going to be stunted a bit more. So this looks really good for province player on most boards.
There are a couple of boons with 3-player to the duchy/duke player, though they generally aren't enough to make up the deficit. Namely, other piles are going to run out faster. So if duchy/duke can get a lead, the game's going to end sooner, and province doesn't have as much time to catch up. Also if the two province players get slowed down dancing with each other, you get time to catch up. And finally, lots of those single-card engines where you need a lot, your opponent can't get so many. So you're less likely to get pummeled by a player with a huge minion or HP or conspirator engine, 'cause they can't get as many.

4-player makes things even crazier. So, everything from above gets even further compounded. Your opponents have 4 provinces each, which isn't that much at all. You should flip to buying dukes after like 5 duchies probably. Certainly not more than 6. The game's going to be so short, you might actually hold up ok, if you can get a quick 3-pile; it's not SO rare for racing to duchies to be good in 4-player anyway. But likely, in 4-player, the game is so short that you really really need to listen to your shuffle luck. By that I mean, if you're getting 6s early, go for gold and provinces. But if you get 5s, then roll with the duchy/duke. Okay, more complicated than that, but the idea is to have a strategy flexible to whatever you draw.
That's about all I got.

jomini

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Re: Duke
« Reply #30 on: February 11, 2012, 12:46:30 pm »
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Okay, edited a couple things, added some spacing.
Geronimoo, that's a bit of an overgeneralization. Not that it's wrong exactly.
GendoIkari: exactly! You WANT coppers, so trashing them is baaaaaaad.
vidicate: I'm the one saying 'duh'...
Everyone: I'm thoroughly unconvinced that transmute has any speed or staying power, or ability to actually get to the dukes themselves, without a huge amount of help, anyway, which probably precludes dukes fairly well in the first place. Positive synergy? Probably, but transmute's so bad anyway, I'd not try counting on it here.
Multiplayer.... more comments coming tomorrow, but it would need a whole nother section, and I have some advice/thoughts, but I'm not an expert there.

Transmute alone is crap. With a viable engine, yeah provinces are more likely to work. But there is a middle ground where you try to go engine building and start falling behind. It is not going to be a good way to win from the start, but it can be a good way to salvage something from some busted potion hands (e.g. 1P or 2P hands early on) that let the other guy get up by a province or two.
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Wolphmaniac

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Re: Duke
« Reply #31 on: February 27, 2012, 07:01:14 pm »
0

The optimal sequence for Duke/Duchy gaining order, based purely on VP's-per-gain and not on other game factors, is as follows (points in parenthesis):

1. Duchy (3)
2. Duchy (3)
3. Duchy (3)
4. Duchy (3)
5. Duke (4)

From this point forward, on your even numbered gains you will score the same number of points with either card.  On gain #6, either a Duke or a Dutchy will net you 4 points.  To maximize points from each gain from here on, you must gain the OTHER card on your odd gains that you acquired on the preceding even gain.  Otherwise you will leave points on the table.     

6. Duke (4) - either card is worth 4
7. Duchy (5) - opposite of gain #6.  Note that a Duke would only have been worth 4 here.
8. Duchy (5) - either card is worth 5
9. Duke (6) - opposite of gain #8.  Note that a Duchy would only have been worth 5 here.
...
« Last Edit: February 28, 2012, 06:45:19 pm by Wolphmaniac »
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Jimmmmm

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Re: Duke
« Reply #32 on: February 27, 2012, 09:14:09 pm »
0

The optimal sequence for Duke/Duchy gaining order, based purely on VP's-per-purchase and not on other game factors, is as follows (points in parenthesis):

1. Duchy (3)
2. Duchy (3)
3. Duchy (3)
4. Duchy (3)
5. Duke (4)

From this point forward, on your even numbered gains you will score the same number of points with either card.  On gain #6, either a Duke or a Dutchy will net you 4 points.  To maximize points from each gain from here on, you must gain the OTHER card on your odd gains that you acquired on the preceding even gain.  Otherwise you will leave points on the table.     

6. Duke (4) - either card is worth 4
7. Duchy (5) - opposite of gain #6.  Note that a Duke would only have been worth 4 here.
8. Duchy (5) - either card is worth 5
9. Duke (6) - opposite of gain #8.  Note that a Duchy would only have been worth 5 here.
...

tl;dr In theory gain 3 Duchies then alternate.

In reality, of course, it's usually best to buy out the Duchies first unless the game is about to end and you need to maximise your points.

Of course, that's probably already been said a bunch of times in this thread.
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jimjam

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Re: Duke
« Reply #33 on: February 29, 2012, 05:38:30 am »
0

Has anyone had much experience with Tournament/Duke? I tried it recently (got most of the prizes, don't know if I should have gotten Duchies sooner) and got killed.
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DStu

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Re: Duke
« Reply #34 on: February 29, 2012, 05:48:33 am »
+1

Has anyone had much experience with Tournament/Duke? I tried it recently (got most of the prizes, don't know if I should have gotten Duchies sooner) and got killed.
Maybe sometimes there is a way to go Dukes with Tournaments, but I think usually they don't work well together. You can't rush with them, because even +1Action+1Card+1$ is usually worst than Silver in a Dukedeck, and you're opponent will be full of Provinces later to make them dead cards.

So when you build up for a usual Tournamentdeck, you might have the possibility to get lots of Duchies fast, but if you have a deck like that you usually also can win via Provinces. So what to see is of course that Dukes are (lots of) additional VPs on the table, such that building up for an engine is much more reasonable than without them. When you fall behind, you have the possibility to get lots of Duchies quite fast, you might have Princess for cheap Dukes, you can hinder your opponent with Followers.
So Dukes on the table is of course something that might influence from leaving the BigMoney-route towards e.g. Tournament (which by itself is of course already a reason to leave the BigMoney route), but not because I plan for a dedicated Duke-deck, but because I have the Dukes as backup if my engine is not fast enough to compete on the Provinces. Gaining Duchies via Tournament is then an additional bonus, on the other hand Princess works stronger on SR/Gardens than on Dukes. So that is not a point for Duke alone, but for alternative VPs generally.
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chinano

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Re: Duke
« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2012, 07:03:39 am »
0

Hi WW, nice article, I always wanted to find out how to play this card, but I got an idea: If I bought about 4-5 Hunting Parties, a single gold - wouldnt that be surer - HP can be tremendous stifter, but it costs $5 so Im not so sure whether I can get enough of em...
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qmech

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Re: Duke
« Reply #36 on: August 28, 2012, 02:43:40 pm »
0

but it costs $5 so Im not so sure whether I can get enough of em...
That's the problem.  At $5 you're competing with Duchies, which it's important to get early so that you don't lose the split.  It's more likely that you'd want to buy Hunting Parties to rush the Provinces before a Duke player got ahead.  This is what's meant by the "Doesn't work with: Hunting Party" in the article.
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Asklepios

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Re: Duke
« Reply #37 on: August 29, 2012, 12:56:57 pm »
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I think Duke/Tournament is complicated.

Broadly speaking the presence of Tournament means that its not worthwhile going for pure Duke/Duchy, as your opponent going for Provinces will potentially let him get a number of Duchies away from you while still pursuing Provinces.

OTOH, I think that going for Provinces with Tournaments, but then incidentally claiming Duchies as a prize a little earlier than you would, and preemptively buying Dukes if you get $5 mid or late game is actually pretty sensible.
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DG

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Re: Duke
« Reply #38 on: August 29, 2012, 01:08:50 pm »
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I'd be very wary of taking a duchy/duke path against a tournament player. The tournament prizes provide the quality needed to sustain a province buying deck. The best defense against a tournament player is to buy provinces of your own. A tournament player can also collect duchies very quickly at the death if they need to, so could perhaps control a three pile ending.
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WheresMyElephant

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Re: Duke
« Reply #39 on: August 30, 2012, 09:48:50 am »
0

s
I'd be very wary of taking a duchy/duke path against a tournament player. The tournament prizes provide the quality needed to sustain a province buying deck. The best defense against a tournament player is to buy provinces of your own. A tournament player can also collect duchies very quickly at the death if they need to, so could perhaps control a three pile ending.

I've been wondering this. Prizes are great as everyone knows, but I don't really see how they help you survive severe greening if the goal is to rush the Provinces singlehandedly (while also grabbing Duchies on the side!)

There's Bag of Gold I guess, and Trusty Steed's Silver option maybe, but is that really going to be enough? In a heavily green deck Diadem is likely a Silver and Princess a terminal Silver, both perhaps welcome but neither is going to turn the tides. Steed's other options are always good but not THAT amazing (in particular, using it as a Lab will amount to filtering a single green card.) And surely you don't dare touch Followers unless you're giving up entirely on emptying the Province pile; although if you intend to win the three-pile ending it might be useful.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2012, 09:56:09 am by WheresMyElephant »
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: Duke
« Reply #40 on: September 10, 2012, 01:46:03 am »
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^If your opponent doesn't buy Provinces, the Tournaments themselves remain very useful. Plus the fact that you gained prizes in addition to whatever you bought gives you a better-than-usual amount of good cards. So even when you have a bunch of victory cards in your deck, the density of them is lower than it would have been had you just been buying that many that fast through ordinary means.
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Asklepios

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Re: Duke
« Reply #41 on: September 11, 2012, 04:03:10 am »
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Explorer --> Duke is a favourite of mine. It means sacrificing your first $5 buy for the Explorer, but it more than pays back for itself in time cost. Its not a killer combo by any means, and not as good as Horse Trader --> Duke, but its still pretty consistent
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dondon151

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Re: Duke
« Reply #42 on: September 11, 2012, 04:26:11 am »
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Haggler/Duke works in much the same way (though I guess you could gain cards other than Silver, but I can't think if many that would be significantly more helpful).
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greatexpectations

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Re: Duke
« Reply #43 on: September 11, 2012, 08:14:04 am »
+2

i wish councilroom was up so that i could link to some of the absurd things marin did to me this weekend. we had a set with no plus buy and no plus gain, with the only way to gain extra cards being cache and opponents buying embassy. i settled into a largely BM approach with embassy/moneylender/crossroads and jumped to a huge lead with colonies.

he was building an engine but then switched to dukes, drawing his whole deck every turn with bazaar/embassy/crossroads and expanding up to duchy/duke. and he got his fodder for doing so by periodically expanding silver into cache for the copper.

absolutely ridiculous.
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Young Nick

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Re: Duke
« Reply #44 on: September 11, 2012, 09:55:13 am »
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Haggler/Duke works in much the same way (though I guess you could gain cards other than Silver, but I can't think if many that would be significantly more helpful).

Typical Haggler outclassing Explorer.
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dondon151

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Re: Duke
« Reply #45 on: September 11, 2012, 10:15:42 pm »
0

i wish councilroom was up so that i could link to some of the absurd things marin did to me this weekend. we had a set with no plus buy and no plus gain, with the only way to gain extra cards being cache and opponents buying embassy. i settled into a largely BM approach with embassy/moneylender/crossroads and jumped to a huge lead with colonies.

he was building an engine but then switched to dukes, drawing his whole deck every turn with bazaar/embassy/crossroads and expanding up to duchy/duke. and he got his fodder for doing so by periodically expanding silver into cache for the copper.

absolutely ridiculous.

I would classify Expand as a "gainer..." not because it gives you more cards, but it's a way to gain multiple Victory cards per turn.

And quite honestly, I am not surprised; alt VP is great for engines, and Crossroads is great for alt VP.
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jonts26

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Re: Duke
« Reply #46 on: September 11, 2012, 10:55:29 pm »
+1

The big issue of course is making duchy/duke viable in a colony game. That alone is impressive. Dukes are so so terrible with colonies out.
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blueblimp

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Re: Duke
« Reply #47 on: November 11, 2012, 05:51:33 am »
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I'm coming to dread Duke mirrors as second player. Player 1 will usually initiate the Duchy buying, and if I'm unlucky enough for one of my next 4 hands to miss $5, player 1 will win the Duchy split. (If player 1 misses $5 once, the split will still be even.) At that point, it's pretty much game over.

Off the top of my head, I can't think of a split more crucial except Provinces and Colonies, and at least then the game ends when the pile empties. In a Duke game, there's still a little hope, so it's necessary to slog through the Dukes and then the Provinces for a tiny chance at recovery.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2012, 05:55:16 am by blueblimp »
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qmech

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Re: Duke
« Reply #48 on: January 18, 2013, 05:31:51 pm »
+1

i wish councilroom was up so that i could link to some of the absurd things marin did to me this weekend. we had a set with no plus buy and no plus gain, with the only way to gain extra cards being cache and opponents buying embassy. i settled into a largely BM approach with embassy/moneylender/crossroads and jumped to a huge lead with colonies.

he was building an engine but then switched to dukes, drawing his whole deck every turn with bazaar/embassy/crossroads and expanding up to duchy/duke. and he got his fodder for doing so by periodically expanding silver into cache for the copper.

absolutely ridiculous.

The game, for anyone looking for it in future.
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