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Author Topic: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw  (Read 691 times)

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xyz123

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Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« on: January 05, 2018, 05:09:48 pm »
+4

Hi. I would like some advice on how this kingdom should be played.

Starting with Provinces/Estates




My thoughts on the board

The interaction that jumps out at me here is Distant Lands and Battlefield. Battlefield tries to reward you for greening early (or trick you into greening too early) and Distant Lands allows you to green early because it removes itself from your deck. Also, by the time it is on your tavern mat, a Distant Lands with Battlefield points is worth the same as a Province without. It seems to be that you need a compelling reason not to go for it and I cannot see one here.

The board also offers payload options for potentially gaining and playing Distant Lands on the same turn, which can keep your deck nice and clean. You can gain a card with Ironworks which can be Butchered or Upgraded into a DL. The big problem for an engine though is the lack of draw. The only way you can draw more than one engine component is with an activated Shanty Town or by calling Royal Carriage on one of the cantrips.

I can see several possible ways to play this.

1) The engine
The lack of draw doesn't mean the engine is impossible, but it does make it weaker. You still have trashing, a village and payload. This board also features several options for sifting and deck re-ordering. Can this help compensate for the lack of draw and aid reliability?

2) Apothecary
A simple Apothecary deck should be able to quickly and reasonably reliably pick up a Distant Lands on most turns whilst playing the one bought on the previous turn. The main problem here is that you also have to make the deck be able to do something else for when the Distant Lands are gone.

3) A Butcher, Ironworks money strategy.
A money strategy using Ironworks as a Silver gainer and Butchering Silvers into Distant Lands.

4) I don't think it is a feasible option, but a golden deck is possible here.
Given that the simplest deck that can gain and play a Distant Lands each turn consists of Ironworks, Upgrade and Shanty Town, it is possible but I don't think it is realistic. I think trashing down to it would take too long and like the Apothecary deck, it also needs to be able to do something else when the DLs are gone.

Playing the game

I tried playing the engine  and it didn't work as I would have hoped. I opened Ironworks/Silver and planned to use Upgrade for my trashing. The problem I found was that you have to get really thin for the engine to start to work and by then it was too late. Apologies, but this was a real life game and I cannot remember much more about what I did. If anyone does think the engine is viable I would like to hear how you would go about it. I am wondering if you should open Ironworks/Trade Route on a 4/3 as this negates the need for an early Silver which is adding an extra stop card in your deck. You can always gain a Silver later on to start hitting 5 once the deck can take it.

Interested to hear any thoughts or ideas on this board.
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Gazbag

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2018, 07:02:30 pm »
+1

Why are you listing the engine and Apothecary as different things? You build an Apothecary engine here I'm pretty sure - Apothecary is a great early game accelerator and then it lets you order your deck to make the Shanties work. I'd open Potion+Shanty town or Butcher on a 5/2. You want to get Butcher on the first $5 and then an Upgrade and then a million Royal Carriages. You probably pick up an Ironworks at some point just to gain cards. The endgame is playing a Butcher a bunch with Carriages, I wouldn't go out of my way for Battlefield.

It's a pretty tricky deck to play to be honest, I'd probably mess it up.
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DG

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2018, 08:42:24 pm »
+1

Battlefield doesn't necessarily push you towards an engine. Butcher can often suit a compact income deck that buys early provinces then trashes provinces for provinces. That would be helped by battlefield but I'm not sure this is right kingdom so some apothecary engine seems better. Getting draw from shanty towns might be key to building a really good deck so maybe upgrade is a better tool than butcher, at least while the engine is building.
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crj

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2018, 12:14:07 am »
+1

One thing that stands out for me about your reasoning: you don't need to be able to gain a Distant Lands, draw it and play it in a single turn to have a golden deck.

Instead, each turn play one Distant Lands, and gain another?

That makes the simplest golden deck Ironworks, Upgrade, Distant Lands, no? Play Ironworks, gain Ironworks, +1 Action. Play Upgrade, draw Ironworks, +1 Action, trash Ironworks, gain (a new) Distant Lands. Play (existing) Distant Lands from your hand.

But as an alternative golden deck, what about 2*Royal Carriage, 2*Oasis, Butcher, Distant Lands?

Each turn would, starting with any six cards, be:
  • Play Royal Carriage
  • Play Oasis, draw sixth card, discard Oasis
  • Call Royal Carriage, play Oasis again, draw Oasis, discard Oasis
  • Play Royal Carriage
  • Play Butcher, trash nothing
  • Call Royal Carriage, play Butcher again, trash nothing
  • Play Distant Lands
  • Spend $2 and 3 coin tokens on a new Distant Lands
That doesn't encounter the problem of running out of Ironworks, and it accumulates a steady trickle of coin tokens, which ought to mean you can use Butcher in lieu of +Buy for double-Province (or even triple-Province) turns once the Distant Lands run out.

Off the top of my head, would it suck to open Oasis/Trade Route, then buy more Oasis when you don't hit $5. Get Butcher and use it to make some Royal Carriages, which you use on Trade Route to finish ridding yourself of Copper? Probably, but it feels like it might work if tweaked a little.
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xyz123

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2018, 01:17:51 am »
0

Thanks for the replies.

In answer to Gazbag's question, I listed Apothecary differently to the engine because the Apothecary deck I referred was initially using just Apothecary in order to be able to buy Distant Lands. It wasn't building an engine around it.
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terminalCopper

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2018, 07:24:45 am »
0


Whenever a board has multiple options, its tempting to go for a beautiful, reliable concept, e.g. golden decks. But usually, strong kingdoms offer something faster; same here. Going for Apothecary followed by Upgrade is both fast and sustainable:

In a perfect world, we open shanty/potion, and the buys in T3-T6 are Apothecary, 2 Upgrades, Apothecary+Royal Carriage. The latter double buy can be achieved if we upgrade an estate into a trade route; ideally we upgrade the other estates into oasis/shanty town. Finally, upgrade potion into Butcher.

To be more realistic, this will rarely work until T6, so let's factor in, say, three turns where we don't hit 5$. We can use the additional time to trash some of our coppers, and as a rough guess, after T9 our deck might be similar to

2 Apothecary
2 Upgrade
2 Oasis
2 Shanty Town
Trade Route
Royal Carriage
Butcher
4 Copper

We have some synergies here: oasis can activate shanties or discard coppers to redraw with Apothecary, Royal Carriage is powerful because of its flexibility. Summed up, we have a good shot to draw our deck after T9. If so, we can get two distant lands (buy one, butcher a 3$-card) and play them next turn. If necessary to win the split, RC-butcher can even get you a third Distand Land.
Moreover, once the DL's are gone, the deck is perfectly alive, and can quickly be transformed into a deck that gets a prov per turn, or mill them with RC-butcher.

I think that none of the other mentioned plans performs as well as the described combination of Apothecary/Upgrade does, and i believe that its not even close.
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Chris is me

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2018, 07:31:50 am »
0

Is Upgrade really a lot better than Butcher on the first $5? The cycling is likely not worth the lack of extra Coin tokens you get from Estate -> Shanty trashes, and its not like you urgently need to flush all your Copper right away either. I think you want one of each, later Butchering the Upgrade into an RC or Distant Lands.
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terminalCopper

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2018, 07:54:19 am »
+2

Is Upgrade really a lot better than Butcher on the first $5?

Yes it is:

- in general, +action +card is more often useful than +coin, compare lost city to baker.
- with shanty in hand, upgrade leads to three more cards than butcher.
- after playing apothecary, upgrade can draw whatever apothecary leaves on top.
- moreover, in this specific kingdom, draw is somewhat unreliable.

Butcher will be king when greening, but I want to trash all the estates and a few coppers as well before, this is why i think that 2 is the best number of upgrades to get.

I agree they will be butchered in the final phase.
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crj

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2018, 08:13:45 am »
0

One thing I really like about Butcher is the way it can alternate between turning Estates into $3 cards and Coppers into $3 cards. That's especially true on this board where there are a couple of nice $3s to get.

Is concentrating on draw really the way to go? Thinning seems more appealing, and there's no need to stall: with a coin-based economy, towards game end Butcher is equivalent to +Buy, economy and salvaging. Your opponent isn't going to manage a surprise ending, so you can leave greening until your final turn or two, and run a very tight deck until then.
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terminalCopper

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2018, 03:15:37 pm »
+2

One thing I really like about Butcher is the way it can alternate between turning Estates into $3 cards and Coppers into $3 cards. That's especially true on this board where there are a couple of nice $3s to get.

Butchering copper into a 3$ is rarely a good choice.

Instead of +1$ (copper) you have to invest a coin, so you play a terminal 5$ that kinda says  -2, trash a copper, gain a card costing 3$. It's like self-enchantering an activated conspirator to pay 5$ for a weakened workshop just to trash a copper. There might be some edge cases where  it is worth the effort ...

... but definitely, not here: having more 3$'s than you get by dud turns and transformed estates might even be bad (oasis, shanty and trade route all risk to harm your drawing power), you don't need to get rid of copper at all price (because of apothecary) and even if you want to, upgrade does this by far better.
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Cave-o-sapien

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2018, 04:17:14 pm »
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Butchering copper into a 3$ is rarely a good choice.

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crj

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2018, 09:17:12 pm »
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Instead of +1$ (copper) you have to invest a coin, so you play a terminal 5$ that kinda says  -2, trash a copper, gain a card costing 3$.

Firstly, including the "here's what you would have won" of a Copper you trash in a card's effect feels like double counting. It's not meaningful to say that Chapel has a -$4 effect when you trash four Coppers, even if it's not false per se.

Secondly, I'm only advocating it as a $3 gainer because there's $3 stuff worth gaining. When trashing Copper, Baker is more like "Trash a Copper. +1 Buy, +$2", which would be overpriced at $5 except that Baker can then pivot into mid-game and late-game usefulness.

Quote
having more 3$'s than you get by dud turns and transformed estates might even be bad
But, while Oasis won't help you reach $8, it's really good at avoiding dud turns and helping you reach $5 more consistently.
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DG

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Re: Battlefield and Distant Lands but no draw
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2018, 09:44:57 pm »
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But, while Oasis won't help you reach $8, it's really good at avoiding dud turns and helping you reach $5 more consistently.

While you are building the apothecary deck you will be butchering or upgrading the estates in order to create a deck without estates. A plan to discard estates to oasis doesn't fit. The will be an opportunity later to upgrade the last estate to an oasis for some fancy hand management. Also, a shanty town that draws +2 cards will give cycling, more chance of drawing potion, and better income.

A butcher and treasure deck would also really be better with silver and not oasis.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2018, 09:46:15 pm by DG »
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