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Author Topic: Engines always better than BM?  (Read 389 times)

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Engines always better than BM?
« on: October 05, 2017, 08:46:17 pm »

"Always go for the engine"- that's one of my three pieces of Dominion wisdom that I tell myself during games. See, when I first started playing Dominion online, I was guilty of playing BM way too much, and against a skilled engine player I would almost always feel the consequences (watching my opponent play 5-minute turns, and losing) unless I got extremely lucky.

I've heard it said many times that a pro player knows when big money is the best thing on a board, and of course, that's sometimes going to be the case. But if there's anything that can reasonably be called an engine on a board, I feel like it's almost always just clearly better. The few times when I've seen money-like strategies beat engine-like strategies, it's either because the engine player didn't pick up enough of the key cards on the board, or wasn't watching the piles closely enough.

For example, let's consider a 3-card board with Village, Moat, and Market. Since there's no trashing, you'll never draw your deck. I guess the "good stuff" deck would open either Moat/Silver or Silver/Silver, and maybe stop at 2 Moats and get Markets with $5 hands. Now that seems much better than the engine, but believe it or not, I've actually seen the engine player pull it out most of the time on boards like this. Did the BM player play badly?

Advice is greatly appreciated, thanks.
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Re: Engines always better than BM?
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2017, 08:52:51 pm »

If thereís a significant Attack, I can see the Moat engine being the way to go.

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Re: Engines always better than BM?
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2017, 09:01:07 pm »

A lot of boards are engine boards these days. The trick isn't just about playing the engine, but also playing it correctly and also delaying greening, otherwise, the engine can fall apart, and a money strategy can beat it. With that said, money boards still exist. My advice though, is to try and go for the engine, and if you lose to a money strategy try and figure out why.

Anyway, you asked if the money player played badly. I mean, it's very possible to make mistakes with money. Usually, for instance, you want to avoid getting Duchies if you are going against the engine. Your goal is to empty out the Provinces. Misplays do happen in money, but it is also easier to make mistakes with engines. They require more components, and many decisions with engines are made at many points throughout the game. Money decks in general require less decision making, though, this is not always 100% the case.

With that said, engines are really good. They can do more things. Money usually is just able to buy a Province and that's it. Also, if alt. vp is on the board, that's usually a strong sign you want to consider the engine, but there are many more factors than that. My advice watch videos from top players and read the blog articles. Also, if you are playing base only, you should really check out Burning Skull's videos.
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