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Author Topic: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?  (Read 2812 times)

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Seprix

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Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« on: October 10, 2017, 01:06:53 pm »
+4

This is something that has spawned much debate as of late, and I don't think it's a topic that deserves to be in an article. I think it's a "everyone says their piece" sort of deal, and whatever sticks will stick. So there's a bunch of things that need to be decided. I am for the record perfectly happy with the squinty fuzzy sorta get it right with the vague word, but a lot of people are not and I want to see if we can agree to call things the same things somewhat consistently.

1. What to call a Village that isn't a traditional Village? You know, when you Summon a cantrip or play two Throne Rooms to play multiple actions. Do we need a meta term to encompass all cards that allow you to play multiple actions? Awaclus has proposed "splitter" which I think is highly confusing but some people like it.

2. What do you call the 2017 Money decks? Some people call them "Good Stuff" decks. Others call them Province Rushes. Moneyish decks. Money Engines. There are so many names for this type of deck. What is it? Let me try to define it.

It's a deck where you play money with a bunch of good cards in your deck. You get a trasher or junker in the opener, play with Trade, Conquest, Borrow, etc. Usually there isn't as much emphasis on draw cards, although those can exist.

I am a fan of calling these decks Province Rushes. But what if there is one and you're competing with Castles? Maybe Province Rush variant?

3. Different types of engines. We all know this one. How many different types of engines are there? How should they be catagorized? A lot of people lean on the WanderingWinder 4 deck types but I do not like those anymore. They're not very useful. Can there be a better system? I think so.

(a note: none of this will help people play better Dominion as much as it will help clarify what people mean whenever they say X or Y.)

I may have missed some things. It's really an open topic. As always be civil, I'm half afraid this will be locked in 3 weeks.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2017, 01:08:20 pm by Seprix »
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LastFootnote

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2017, 01:17:55 pm »
+3

1. I don't think we need a single term for things that can act as villages but don't give a flat +2 (or more) Actions. I feel like normally I talk about them on a case-by-case basis anyway.

2. Maybe just non-engine? Or something. I do think the term "Big Money Deck" means so many different things to different people that it hinders communication rather than aiding it. I tentatively like "Province Rush". Maybe we don't need a term that encompasses both "Province Rush" and "Castles Rush". We can just refer to them individually.

3. When you say "different types of engine", what do you mean? Like, the way they draw, or the way they trash, or their payload?
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SCSN

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2017, 01:22:15 pm »
+7

I am a fan of calling these decks Province Rushes. But what if there is one and you're competing with Castles? Maybe Province Rush variant?

Points rush.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2017, 01:24:47 pm »
0

1. What to call a Village that isn't a traditional Village? You know, when you Summon a cantrip or play two Throne Rooms to play multiple actions. Do we need a meta term to encompass all cards that allow you to play multiple actions? Awaclus has proposed "splitter" which I think is highly confusing but some people like it.

I have not proposed "splitter", it was a term that originated from onigame's kingdom generator. I have proposed "anti-terminal" but the only reaction to that was an aunt pun, which is why I continue to use "splitter".

2. What do you call the 2017 Money decks? Some people call them "Good Stuff" decks. Others call them Province Rushes. Moneyish decks. Money Engines. There are so many names for this type of deck. What is it? Let me try to define it.

It's a deck where you play money with a bunch of good cards in your deck. You get a trasher or junker in the opener, play with Trade, Conquest, Borrow, etc. Usually there isn't as much emphasis on draw cards, although those can exist.

I am a fan of calling these decks Province Rushes. But what if there is one and you're competing with Castles? Maybe Province Rush variant?

I am not a fan of calling these decks anything Rushes or anything Engines because rush and engine already mean something different, respectively. Other than that, I don't think it really matters what term you use as long as it's easy to figure out what you mean by it. Big money, good stuff, moneyish deck, 2017 money, etc. are all good enough terms.

3. Different types of engines. We all know this one. How many different types of engines are there? How should they be catagorized? A lot of people lean on the WanderingWinder 4 deck types but I do not like those anymore. They're not very useful. Can there be a better system? I think so.

That's more of a spectrum than something that can be easily classified into distinct categories. I think it's fine to just call them engines, and describe the finer details by, for example, naming some of the most relevant kingdom cards when necessary.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2017, 01:29:31 pm »
+2

"2017 money Deck"? Things are getting pretty meta, but 2017 does mark the start of Dominion Online as we know it now.

I kind of like the term anti-terminal, but the QWERTY phenomenon seems to be in full effect when it comes to villages/splitters. I personally wish to use "Village & co.".
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2017, 01:35:51 pm »
0

I actually like anti-terminal for those odd case villages, or maybe even "villages" in general.  Anything that can enable you to play multiple terminal actions in a particular kingdom.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2017, 01:37:24 pm »
+17

I assume the main argument against using the term "village" is ambiguity between this term and the Village card.
I suggest we should increase the frustration and call all the villages "walled villages".

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2017, 01:44:25 pm »
+5

On money - Call it money. If the deck is competing against an overbuilt engine, "Province rush" also works

On +action - Call it +action, i.e. "Throne Room is the only way to get +action here"
« Last Edit: October 10, 2017, 01:46:32 pm by dedicateddan »
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2017, 01:46:49 pm »
+6

1. I use "splitter", but I don't really care.  "+Action"/"plus action" is also a good term that anyone can understand even if they've never heard it before.  So if I'm playing with a relative newbie, I can say, "There's plus action in this kingdom because of Summon," then I'd explain how Summon can get you extra actions.  Calling Summon a village is confusing and prompts arguments.

3. Rather than trying to classify engines in categories, we should be characterizing them with adjectives.  Adjectives are much more flexible, because they can overlap, and you can talk about distinctions without necessarily having to place them within a theory of everything.  Besides, we're already using adjectives.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2017, 02:02:30 pm »
+9

The one term that has always amused me is "Good stuff deck"; it's generally about as good as the "Democratic People's Republic of Korea" is a republic run by the Korean people in a democratic fashion.
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DG

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2017, 02:07:21 pm »
+3

Big money still works. I think the Wandering Winder deck types still hold true up to empires and largely hold after empires. Any introduction to Dominion tactics can exclude empires.

Splitter isn't needed as a term and is just confusing.

Engines can cross over so many categories that there isn't much point laying down rules for how to play them if you just break those rules all the time.

I don't have a problem discussing decks using existing terms.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2017, 02:18:21 pm »
+2

On +action - Call it +action, i.e. "Throne Room is the only way to get +action here"

Now that you mention it, this is what I use IRL. It's concise, intuitive and as unambiguous as any other proposed term.

It also gets at the fundamental question one is likely to ask in a game, which is: "Can I get extra actions, and if so, how?" The solution for netting extra actions may involve multiple cards, tokens and/or card-shaped objects.

I doubt many people ask themselves, mid-game, "Which cards here would I classify as a Village/Splitter/Porg?"

The taxonomy of Dominion cards is interesting, but I think it's mostly trivial outside the context of a particular kingdom.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2017, 02:22:43 pm »
+7

Does it really matter what we call things?

Quote
You can know the name of that bird in all the languages of the world, but when you're finished, you'll know absolutely nothing whatever about the bird. You'll only know about humans in different places, and what they call the bird. ... I learned very early the difference between knowing the name of something and knowing something.
- Richard Feynman

I once had someone say "nice engine" when they saw me play Scavenger/Stash - playing 1 Action per turn. Definitely not an "engine", in all the definitions I've seen. But rather than talking about the definition of 'engine', we talked about Scavenger/Stash and how to set it up quickly, what to do in a mirror, etc. - these are the things that matter.


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trivialknot

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2017, 02:35:22 pm »
+2

"Big Money" is a fraught term because the title suggests heavy reliance on Treasures, and it was also originally understood in this way.  But there is a need for a larger category of strategies which includes treasure-reliant decks, but also action-heavy non-drawing decks, or decks that have only 3 Encampments for draw, and so on.  For lack of a better term, we call this deck "Big Money", but lots of people still understand "Big Money" to refer to treasure-reliant decks.

I think "Good Stuff" is a better term, but the name isn't very descriptive, and I don't think WanderingWinder originally intended Big Money to be a subset of Good Stuff.

As far as most newbies are concerned, what this deck is, is basically an ordinary deck.  It's the deck type you start out with, and then later you learn about slogs, rushes, and engines.  But calling it "ordinary" deck is problematic because it's only "ordinary" in novice play.

I don't know what to call it.  But just throwing an idea out there, you could call it a Stop Card Deck, because the stop cards far exceed the drawing/sifting.  I guess most rushes and slogs would fit that category too.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #14 on: October 10, 2017, 02:42:03 pm »
+1

1. The simplest thing to do seems to simply say you "got actions."

"Dan got actions from Possession on Caravan Guard and draw from Smithy" for example.

2. I like "the beatdown." It's an old and well-understood term for card games, which demarcates a deck trying to end the game as quickly as possible.

3. There are too many to categorize, and more will emerge over time. It's simplest to just list the engine:

"It was an Artificer/Highway engine"
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Bowi

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #15 on: October 10, 2017, 02:43:58 pm »
+4

1. +Action is probably best. Splitter works as well (it makes about the same amount of intuitive sense as engine). I don't hate the term pseudo-village but can understand why people resist the term.

2. Pretty much any term besides "good stuff". All the rest are descriptive in some way while good stuff doesn't tell you jack (and is even kind of misleading).

3. Just be descriptive about the engine; it doesn't necessarily have to be hard categories. Maybe even state some of the key cards in the engine, particularly the draw and payload. Also, remember that it's also significant to declare what the engine lacks (+buy/gain, trashing, etc.).

Does it really matter what we call things?

I'm not a huge fan of this line of thinking.

I get where you're coming from: people shouldn't get so wrapped up in abstract concepts as to miss what's really happening. However, these abstract concepts are both important for how we decipher how to play boards and how we communicate strategy to one another. We're not able to calculate all the true probabilities related to Dominion so we have to break it down into generalizations and rules of thumb. We refine those generalizations and rules of thumb through trial and error and discussion on the forum. It's important to have coherent language to convey and receive advice on how to play boards.
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Awaclus

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #16 on: October 10, 2017, 03:32:00 pm »
0

2. I like "the beatdown." It's an old and well-understood term for card games, which demarcates a deck trying to end the game as quickly as possible.

That's a separate issue. Any type of deck can be the beatdown or not be the beatdown. Sure, if you're playing big money against an engine, most of the time you're going to be the beatdown, but you can also be the beatdown when you're playing an engine against another engine.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #17 on: October 10, 2017, 03:33:43 pm »
0

2. Pretty much any term besides "good stuff". All the rest are descriptive in some way while good stuff doesn't tell you jack (and is even kind of misleading).

"Good stuff" is perfectly descriptive. It's the deck where you buy good stuff (as opposed to, say, Village, which is not good stuff unless you combine it with terminal Actions).
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #18 on: October 10, 2017, 04:08:40 pm »
0

Given I haven’t played Dominion since the set with the Knights, maybe just ignore me, but on the villages/splitters/etc. thing, I think we are talking about cards that produce more actions to be used during your turn, hence the +Action idea.

I think a more elegant phrasing would be something like discussing the “Action generators” or “Action producers” in the kingdom.  That may be long for verbal communication, but in articles and such, I think it would read nicely.

In forum speak, this would inevitably be pared down, probably to just “generators” for short.  To combat this, you could adopt it for all + cards: coin generators, card generators, etc.  Or just let it go.

There’s no real difference from +/plus, but again, language allows for so many options.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #19 on: October 10, 2017, 04:28:49 pm »
0

Cards that have the power to provide net +Action, but don't always, are pseudo-villages.  Throne Room variants, Ironmonger, Herald, Summon, Prince, can accomplish this.  It could be stretched to include Squire and Trusty Steed, since they don't need any help to provide net +Action.
By my understanding, Splitter means something that doesn't provide +Action, but helps prevent terminal collision: stuff like Scheme, Haven, or Save.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #20 on: October 10, 2017, 07:11:17 pm »
0

The one term that has always amused me is "Good stuff deck"; it's generally about as good as the "Democratic People's Republic of Korea" is a republic run by the Korean people in a democratic fashion.

"Good stuff" comes from Magic: the Gathering, right? Basically talking about a deck that played individually powerful cards, as opposed to synergistic combinations of cards. Or is the point you're making that Gold isn't a "good stuff", since there's usually something you can be doing better than buying Gold?
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #21 on: October 10, 2017, 07:50:00 pm »
0

"Good stuff" comes from Magic: the Gathering, right?
Yes.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #22 on: October 10, 2017, 08:16:55 pm »
+7

1. What to call a Village that isn't a traditional Village? You know, when you Summon a cantrip or play two Throne Rooms to play multiple actions. Do we need a meta term to encompass all cards that allow you to play multiple actions? Awaclus has proposed "splitter" which I think is highly confusing but some people like it.
I call villages Villages, conditional villages Conditional Villages, and throne rooms Thrones. When I need a blanket term I use Villages, and clarify if it's necessary, which it never is, not ever. For example, you said, and I quote, "What to call a Village that isn't a traditional Village?" You use the word "Village" there the way I do, as the blanket term. And we knew what you meant, we didn't need you to clarify it. It's working already.

2. What do you call the 2017 Money decks? Some people call them "Good Stuff" decks. Others call them Province Rushes. Moneyish decks. Money Engines. There are so many names for this type of deck. What is it? Let me try to define it.
I just describe the deck, whatever deck it is, engine or not. It was a City Quarter / Hoard deck. He bought up Hunting Parties in the face of Marauder and IGG. You know. I never find myself needing some term to handle this for me.

3. Different types of engines. We all know this one. How many different types of engines are there? How should they be catagorized? A lot of people lean on the WanderingWinder 4 deck types but I do not like those anymore. They're not very useful. Can there be a better system? I think so.
When you are looking at a board, it is for sure helpful to immediately check for engine pieces: is there trashing, draw, village, +buy or gaining. It's also good to just see, what are all the strong cards on this board, maybe they will matter. When you build the engine, the path you take and what you end up with will vary a lot based on the power levels of the cards and their particular quirks. I am not sure categorizing these decks gets you anywhere. It's useful to talk about like how good of a village/smithy thing you can build based on what the village and smithy are, like that article of Stef's. For an actual deck though, well this time Village/Smithy was paired with Remake but also Poor House, or whatever. This time my deck had Curses in it; I didn't want them but they were there, they meant a lot to what the deck was. It wasn't Engine 37, it was Engine 37C.
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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #23 on: October 10, 2017, 08:30:03 pm »
+8

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Re: Dominion Terms: What Should We Call Things?
« Reply #24 on: October 11, 2017, 07:02:40 am »
+1

I only really consider two kinds of decks - engines and rushes. Engines try to chain Actions to gain greater control over the game / the opponent / the end-state; they generally take longer to build with a higher reward at the end. Rushes generally aim to end the game (or secure the majority of points) before an Engine could get enough momentum to secure a lead.

"Big Money" is a rush, to me. I don't like the term "Big Money" in 2017 because a lot of these decks don't rely almost exclusively on expensive Treasures + terminal draw anymore. Cantrips, non-drawing terminals, etc. can all be important part of what's essentially a Province rush (or points rush, if you want to be more general than that).

But why call Money a rush when clearly Rebuild and Ironworks / Gardens are rushes? These aren't actually all that different. Money decks traditionally aim to make the average turn produce $8, by adding Treasures and a few other cards. Rebuild rushes try to make the average turn upgrade Victory cards. Gardens deck try to make the average turn result in getting two plus cards. All of these decks generally pass on adding consistency at the expense of building speed.

The fundamental difference between these two styles of deck is that rushes aim for a powerful average turn while engines generally aim for a consistent turn that ideally draws the entire deck.

I know a lot of people won't use these concepts, and that's fine, I'll just describe things the way it's being described in the thread. I just thought I'd state my preference and the arguments in favor of it.
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