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Author Topic: If you could only have 1 opening  (Read 1170 times)

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Titandrake

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If you could only have 1 opening
« on: February 14, 2018, 03:47:06 am »
+4

Context: there was a recent Reddit thread about the balance of the opening hands, and some discussion on the subject in the markusin vs Stef World Cup match, where Stef had to open Amb/-- on a 5/2 split.

If you had to pick between only 5/2 or only 4/3 for all future games, which would you rather have?

To address pedantic points:
* The order is still random, i.e if you pick 5/2 it's still random whether you get $5 on turn 1 or turn 2.
* If Heirlooms are in the game, they replace a random Copper.
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Awaclus

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2018, 03:51:16 am »
+2

4/3 for sure. Very powerful 5/2s are rare, but very crappy 5/2s are pretty common.
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Gazbag

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2018, 07:38:55 am »
+2

But this means I'd never get to play with Pooka again!
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weesh

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2018, 08:41:44 am »
0

4/3, but the reason is that no one ever thinks "damnit, my opponent opened 3/4"
but sometimes, it's really annoying to have to fight a 5/2 when there is a killer 5 that you need to race to get.

I think, as a friend of weesh, it would be terribly annoying to know he was ALWAYS going to have access to a 5 on the first 2 turns.
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Awaclus

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2018, 08:51:53 am »
0

4/3, but the reason is that no one ever thinks "damnit, my opponent opened 3/4"
but sometimes, it's really annoying to have to fight a 5/2 when there is a killer 5 that you need to race to get.

I think, as a friend of weesh, it would be terribly annoying to know he was ALWAYS going to have access to a 5 on the first 2 turns.

Having access to a 5 on the first two turns isn't usually all that amazing, because then you'll just spend your turns 3 and 4 buying whatever your opponent opened with, your opponent spends their turns 3 and 4 buying whatever you opened with (and possibly an extra Silver or something) and by turn 5 you have the same deck construction anyway except your opponent is probably in a better position because their opening buys were significantly more likely to be trashers.
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weesh

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2018, 10:45:52 am »
0

Having access to a 5 on the first two turns isn't usually all that amazing, because then you'll just spend your turns 3 and 4 buying whatever your opponent opened with, your opponent spends their turns 3 and 4 buying whatever you opened with (and possibly an extra Silver or something) and by turn 5 you have the same deck construction anyway except your opponent is probably in a better position because their opening buys were significantly more likely to be trashers.

agreed with "usually".  but sometimes it's a big boost. and for the sake of fun with my friends, I'd rather have steady and reliable than for it to feel unfair every time a critical 5 is in the kingdom.
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crj

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2018, 10:48:17 am »
0

4/3 is better on some boards. 5/2 is better on others.

So for me the question boils down to: what are the odds that 5/2 will be better on a random board.

And there we hit a problem: what's a "random board"? How are we randomising? I don't think there's a good enough answer to that question.

In the worst-case scenario, we're in a situation like the classic I-cut-you-choose way for two people to share a cake. I decide if I want a 5/2 or a 4/3 opening, then after hearing my choice you construct a kingdom for us to play. :-p

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faust

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2018, 11:03:31 am »
+6

And there we hit a problem: what's a "random board"? How are we randomising? I don't think there's a good enough answer to that question.
There is, actually. I think it's even in the rulebook.
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LastFootnote

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2018, 11:08:47 am »
0

And there we hit a problem: what's a "random board"? How are we randomising? I don't think there's a good enough answer to that question.
There is, actually. I think it's even in the rulebook.

Yeah, it’s “pick cards however you want”.
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jonts26

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2018, 11:13:40 am »
+1

On the average board 4/3 is better, but when 5/2 is better, it's more likely to be much better. Overall, I'd still probably take 4/3.
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JW

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2018, 12:14:50 pm »
+5

This analysis from Jan. 2015 found that 5/2 openings did better than 4/3: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=12475.msg459187#msg459187

Quote
Adjusted Win Rate of 5/2 vs. 4/3:
5/2: + 3.5%
4/3:  - 1%
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DG

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2018, 12:31:04 pm »
0

Sometimes an opening with a 4 cost and silver is not much better than the 4 cost card alone, since the 4 cost is less likely to be played in the next shuffle or again the shuffle after that. That can be Important with a card like remake.
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Cave-o-sapien

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2018, 12:37:07 pm »
+2

This analysis from Jan. 2015 found that 5/2 openings did better than 4/3: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=12475.msg459187#msg459187

Quote
Adjusted Win Rate of 5/2 vs. 4/3:
5/2: + 3.5%
4/3:  - 1%

Interesting! Has enough changed since then to make one question if those results are still accurate?

Ignoring changes in the meta, can the card rankings tell us anything?

5/2: only two of the top 15 $5 cards but a whopping seven of the top 10 $0-2 cost cards/events have come out since then

4/3: four of the top 15 $4 costs and five of the top 15 $3 costs have come out since then.

While the strength of $5 openers arguably didn't go up, it does seem more likely now you'll find something strong at $2.
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Awaclus

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2018, 03:08:06 pm »
0

This analysis from Jan. 2015 found that 5/2 openings did better than 4/3: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=12475.msg459187#msg459187

Quote
Adjusted Win Rate of 5/2 vs. 4/3:
5/2: + 3.5%
4/3:  - 1%

Interesting! Has enough changed since then to make one question if those results are still accurate?

Ignoring changes in the meta, can the card rankings tell us anything?

5/2: only two of the top 15 $5 cards but a whopping seven of the top 10 $0-2 cost cards/events have come out since then

4/3: four of the top 15 $4 costs and five of the top 15 $3 costs have come out since then.

While the strength of $5 openers arguably didn't go up, it does seem more likely now you'll find something strong at $2.

Well, that's not really an accurate way to measure this. There isn't necessarily a direct correlation between cards you want to open with and cards that are in the top 15 — a lot of the top cards are engine components or payload, which means you're not overwhelmingly excited to buy them in the opening. For example, Temple is only #33, but there have been boards where I have had to suck it up and open Temple/nothing on 5/2 (probably in the presence of other cards that were higher up in the rankings).
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Cave-o-sapien

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2018, 03:18:29 pm »
0

Well, that's not really an accurate way to measure this. There isn't necessarily a direct correlation between cards you want to open with and cards that are in the top 15 — a lot of the top cards are engine components or payload, which means you're not overwhelmingly excited to buy them in the opening. For example, Temple is only #33, but there have been boards where I have had to suck it up and open Temple/nothing on 5/2 (probably in the presence of other cards that were higher up in the rankings).

Yeah, I can see that. I guess we would need a list of cards by opening strength.

Maybe we shouldn't ignore changes in the meta. It seems like engines are much stronger now than they were then. Does 4/3 lead to better engines, on average, than 5/2?
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aku_chi

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2018, 05:16:13 pm »
0

For example, Temple is only #33, but there have been boards where I have had to suck it up and open Temple/nothing on 5/2 (probably in the presence of other cards that were higher up in the rankings).

Incidentally, I think Temple is not a good opening.  I don't have a good theory for why this is, but I have observed that non-mirrored Temple openings (whether by me or my opponent) tend to lose games.

Edit: But your general point stands.  Trading Post, Count, and Sentry are atypically good openings on a 5/2.  Whereas, some of the top $5s like Governor, Torturer, and Rebuild aren't particularly exciting to open with.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2018, 05:28:09 pm by aku_chi »
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Holunder9

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2018, 05:20:44 pm »
0

This analysis from Jan. 2015 found that 5/2 openings did better than 4/3: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=12475.msg459187#msg459187

Quote
Adjusted Win Rate of 5/2 vs. 4/3:
5/2: + 3.5%
4/3:  - 1%

Interesting! Has enough changed since then to make one question if those results are still accurate?

Ignoring changes in the meta, can the card rankings tell us anything?

5/2: only two of the top 15 $5 cards but a whopping seven of the top 10 $0-2 cost cards/events have come out since then

4/3: four of the top 15 $4 costs and five of the top 15 $3 costs have come out since then.

While the strength of $5 openers arguably didn't go up, it does seem more likely now you'll find something strong at $2.

Well, that's not really an accurate way to measure this. There isn't necessarily a direct correlation between cards you want to open with and cards that are in the top 15 — a lot of the top cards are engine components or payload, which means you're not overwhelmingly excited to buy them in the opening. For example, Temple is only #33, but there have been boards where I have had to suck it up and open Temple/nothing on 5/2 (probably in the presence of other cards that were higher up in the rankings).
Those $5 junkers and trashers disagree with you.
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Awaclus

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2018, 05:25:40 pm »
+1

Those $5 junkers and trashers disagree with you.

Those $5 junkers and trashers, such as Wharf, Governor, Avanto (super great opening buy btw), Hunting Party and Bridge Troll.
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Holunder9

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #18 on: February 14, 2018, 05:30:22 pm »
0

Those $5 junkers and trashers disagree with you.

Those $5 junkers and trashers, such as Wharf, Governor, Avanto (super great opening buy btw), Hunting Party and Bridge Troll.
A nonsensical remark. Starting with the game with Upgrade, Junk Dealer, Sentry (!!!), Witch, Mountebank, Soothsayer, etc. is simply good and mostly superior to getting a Silver and a $4.
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Cave-o-sapien

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #19 on: February 14, 2018, 05:34:45 pm »
0

For example, Temple is only #33, but there have been boards where I have had to suck it up and open Temple/nothing on 5/2 (probably in the presence of other cards that were higher up in the rankings).

Incidentally, I think Temple is not a good opening.  I don't have a good theory for why this is, but I have observed that non-mirrored Temple openings (whether by me or my opponent) tend to lose games.

Edit: But your general point stands.  Trading Post, Count, and Sentry are atypically good openings on a 5/2.  Whereas, some of the top $5s like Governor, Torturer, and Rebuild aren't particularly exciting to open with.

What are some good opening $5s from the last three sets + 2e?

Sentry?
Replace?
Vampire?
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Awaclus

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #20 on: February 14, 2018, 05:35:54 pm »
+2

Those $5 junkers and trashers disagree with you.

Those $5 junkers and trashers, such as Wharf, Governor, Avanto (super great opening buy btw), Hunting Party and Bridge Troll.
A nonsensical remark. Starting with the game with Upgrade, Junk Dealer, Sentry (!!!), Witch, Mountebank, Soothsayer, etc. is simply good and mostly superior to getting a Silver and a $4.

A nonsensical remark. Starting the game with Masquerade, Plan, Ambassador (!!!), Lookout, Bonfire, Catapult, etc. is simply good and mostly superior to getting a Harvest.
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Cave-o-sapien

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #21 on: February 14, 2018, 05:36:01 pm »
+1

Those $5 junkers and trashers disagree with you.

Those $5 junkers and trashers, such as Wharf, Governor, Avanto (super great opening buy btw), Hunting Party and Bridge Troll.
A nonsensical remark. Starting with the game with Upgrade, Junk Dealer, Sentry (!!!), Witch, Mountebank, Soothsayer, etc. is simply good and mostly superior to getting a Silver and a $4.

Snark aside, the point was not that there aren't good cards to open with in the top 15, but that being in the top 15 doesn't imply the card is good to open with.
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Holunder9

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #22 on: February 14, 2018, 05:45:39 pm »
0

Snark aside, the point was not that there aren't good cards to open with in the top 15, but that being in the top 15 doesn't imply the card is good to open with.
I never referred to card ratings which are fairly irrelevant for the discussion.
What I claimed is that there are brilliant $5 trashers and that most junkers cost $5. If one of them is in the Kingdom you'd likely prefer a 5/2 opening.
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Commodore Chuckles

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #23 on: February 14, 2018, 06:10:21 pm »
+2

Avanto (super great opening buy btw)

This actually is a super great opening, because it means you somehow gained all 5 Saunas first.
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Cave-o-sapien

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Re: If you could only have 1 opening
« Reply #24 on: February 14, 2018, 06:15:12 pm »
0

Avanto (super great opening buy btw)

This actually is a super great opening, because it means you somehow gained all 5 Saunas first.

Or a multiplayer game with Messenger, in which case you might have just one.
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