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The Alchemist

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Dominion: Arcadia
« on: November 18, 2021, 05:26:18 am »
+2

Dominion: Arcadia


Arcadia: "n. a place of rustic innocence and simple, quiet pleasure". As a concept, Arcadia is like Utopia, but one focusing on harmony with nature and simple living, not a technocratic man-made paradise. This is a half-expansion consisting of single-type, simple cards, with a maximum of 3 lines of text at 10 pt font (the max font), not including vanilla bonuses. A subtheme is gaining cards to your hand, namely Treasures. Art/Name-wise, they are pastoral cards featuring countrysides and tradesman, people making a living with their hands in honest labor.

 
« Last Edit: November 18, 2021, 05:39:13 am by The Alchemist »
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The Alchemist

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2021, 05:39:19 am »
0

Outtakes:
These cards are still under consideration but ultimately removed, either for being too similar to a card above, exceeding 3 lines of text, or being just too bland. Two are actually just cards made by others that I infact started to make myself only to find they'd already been made, and happened to fit the theme (Credit: Gubump and LastFootnote). Feedback on the outtakes would be appreciated as well but less of a priority, as well as any argument in favor of one over any of the ones above.


Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated!
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X-tra

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2021, 10:56:28 am »
+2

Congratulations on the good work you have put forth with Arcadia!

Oof, lots to go through, though! Card dumps are usually pretty intimidating, so Id expect less traffic here because of it. In my personal opinion, in the future, Id format the thread following Donald Xs way of showing new expansion cards. Doing little 3-cards preview over the course of a few days, for instance. It gives people time to discuss and ponder about the cards currently being shown too. Just a suggestion!

But enough of that. Lets check some cards.


Tin: My first reaction was to scout for other Journey token cards in this set but Tin stands alone using it. This feels a little tacked-on because of it. I think I wouldve slotted an outtake card into the set instead of Tin because of that. Plus, theres already a very high proportion of +Buys in this set (4/14 → 28,6%). In the end, Tin doesnt really excite me, Ill be honest.

Statue: Statue suffers from the same problem as Tin to me. The only + giver in this set. And the effect is really boring to me. Its almost a non-card to me. Sorry!

Sawyer: Now this one is interesting to me! Sawyer might be a little too strong imo. Compared to the same-priced Woodcutter, it surpasses it by a very good amount. This can go nuts. A single copy will provide you all the buys you need in your big engine. Its almost too easy of a solution! Id check if maybe the cost condition could be changed to be more restrictive somehow.

Miller: It mills. Id love for it to cost so that it may gain itself on an Estate trash, lol.

Cheesemaker: This will Laboratory more times than it wont, I believe. And so, my initial hypothesis is that this might be too strong. Gotta play with it first to assess it better, though.

Pastoral Village: This seems good as-is. Cute little Village! Maybe a little strong, but not in a bonkers way. I feel like my evaluation could be off though. All in all, I like Pastoral Village.

Cliffside Village: Ah, the classic Copper to hand or Silver to discard choice. I also made a card that has this effect and so did uuuh Mocha I think. Here, it is on a Village though. This is a little counterproductive for the Village, since it just bloats the deck with many stop cards. And you tend to play Villages a lot. So Id only ever pick this up with some nice trash-for-benefit, such as Salvager or Apprentice.

Potter: First of all, theres a typo here. It says +1 Actions. The s should be removed. Anyway, I believe Grep made a very similar card named Craftsman. Here it is (scroll down a little). Not sure which one I prefer. Craftsman works only once per turn, but offers more control since it doesnt have to gain you stuff you didnt want. Interesting trade-off between these 2 cards. Id have to play em both to decide which one Id rather play with.

Redsmith: I dont really have any strong opinions on that card. Seems very specific about what it does. But yknow, this probably works in practice! Draw is draw, as they say. As always, Id crack a couple of games with Redsmith to truly know where I stand with it.

Whitesmith: When it comes to draw cards, I believe that Whitesmith offers a more interesting effect than Redsmith. The choice is a good one to take. This might be a little strong in money-centric games though. Still, I must reiterate that I love the choice given here!

Travelling Merchant: I feel like Id have a hard time giving up my draw card. Especially since it cost me to invest in it. Cards returning to the Supply should probably be on the cheaper end of things, since the idea is that you want to re-gain them quickly and easily down the line. However, thats not to say I would never use Travelling Merchants returning clause. In desperate times, I might just pull that trigger! And I guess, that sort of is the nice safety net that this card offers. I think overall, I quite like it!

Spinster: This is pretty strong imo. gainers are pretty strong in general. This one is cheaper than Artisan and Altar and fires off more quickly than Vampire. I think Im not too hot on Spinster, but this only stems from my personal preferences.

Carpenter: Buy a card to your hand now, basically. This has some very nice gain and play implications. Id definitely buy this card and try to do some crazy stuff with it. Only problem is that it cannot use your Treasures like Black Market would. You need to have some decent Action cards payload to get the better cards via Carpenter. In a pinch, add more Carpenters to your deck (if you have Village support, of course). A cool minigame!

Meadow: I know its going to sound harsh and Im sorry about this, but I straight up do not like this sorry. I thoroughly dislike scaling Victory cards such as Gardens or Silk Road that can actually decrease in value because A) You didnt track your deck well and accidently crossed a bad threshold; or B) effects you have no control over made it worse. Meadow falls into the B) category here. You invest a whopping into some , only for it to be decreased by other players, something you have almost 0 power against. This uncertainty will probably make players scared to sink a huge opportunity cost into a Meadow war because if someone gets a huge boost from a Meadow, you can and probably SHOULD fight it. This is a very feelsbad moment for everyone involved. As such, the pile will probably remain untouched, until a player finishes the game and gains a Meadow on the last moment, adding a massive boon to their score with everyone else unable to fight back.


As a final quick note: Both Tin and Meadow are missing their expansion icon.  :P
« Last Edit: November 18, 2021, 10:58:13 am by X-tra »
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emtzalex

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2021, 11:52:01 am »
+3

Is the gaining effect for Cliffside Village optional (i.e. can you choose to gain neither a Silver or a Copper-to-hand)? I think it is a bit ambiguous  with this language. If the gaining is mandatory, I would suggest

Quote from: Cliffside Village
Choose one: Gain a Copper to your hand; or gain a Silver.

It is slightly shorter and uses the "Choose one" syntax of many official cards. If it's optional, you might want to add "(or neither)" to the end, although I don't know if that is necessary.
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he/him/his

Thanks to Shard of Honor for his Extended Version of the Dominion Card Image Generator, which I use to mock up my fan cards, and to Violet CLM, who made the original.

The Alchemist

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2021, 03:46:27 pm »
0

Is the gaining effect for Cliffside Village optional (i.e. can you choose to gain neither a Silver or a Copper-to-hand)? I think it is a bit ambiguous  with this language. If the gaining is mandatory, I would suggest

Quote from: Cliffside Village
Choose one: Gain a Copper to your hand; or gain a Silver.

It is slightly shorter and uses the "Choose one" syntax of many official cards. If it's optional, you might want to add "(or neither)" to the end, although I don't know if that is necessary.

Yes, it is optional to gain nothing. It starts off with "You may gain" like artificer and other cards, its just what you may gain is itself an entire clause, which is not unusual, since its the same for forge, or zombie mason, its just this particular either clause has never been used this way. This is novel, but I don't see a need for a "neither", since its implicit in "may". A simple FAQ clarification would suffice.
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X-tra

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2021, 04:19:37 pm »
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I also thought in my analysis above that Cliffside Village had a mandatory gain attached to it. Perhaps it would be worth considering a re-wording if the majority of people gets confused as well. Something like: "You may choose one: Gain a Silver; or gain a Copper to your hand." Just a quick idea.
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DunnoItAll

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2021, 07:30:11 am »
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Card dumps are usually pretty intimidating, so Id expect less traffic here because of it.

In my experience, gradual reveals don't result in more traffic or better commentary. Personally, I prefer to see it all at once.
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DunnoItAll

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2021, 07:33:36 am »
+1

Meadow: I know its going to sound harsh and Im sorry about this, but I straight up do not like this sorry. I thoroughly dislike scaling Victory cards such as Gardens or Silk Road that can actually decrease in value because A) You didnt track your deck well and accidently crossed a bad threshold; or B) effects you have no control over made it worse. Meadow falls into the B) category here. You invest a whopping into some , only for it to be decreased by other players, something you have almost 0 power against. This uncertainty will probably make players scared to sink a huge opportunity cost into a Meadow war because if someone gets a huge boost from a Meadow, you can and probably SHOULD fight it. This is a very feelsbad moment for everyone involved. As such, the pile will probably remain untouched, until a player finishes the game and gains a Meadow on the last moment, adding a massive boon to their score with everyone else unable to fight back.

This is a really good point on this card, but it makes me wonder if you could try some embargo token hijinks with it? Possibly include it on the card (I know this might make it conform to  your simplicity theme less well) or maybe via an heirloom that lets you add embargo tokens?  Just a thought I had while reading that.  Take it FWIW (brainstorming).
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Aquila

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2021, 10:15:34 am »
+2

As an expansion: it's adding more of the base set to the game. In fact it appears even simpler than the base set with less variety, although there are fewer cards at the moment. Definitely for players wanting a relaxing, easy time, without much player interaction.

Tin: Power wise, you could take a leaf from Fool's Gold. 2 FGs in play makes $5. The Journey token bonus could be bigger, and I think it would be more interesting with it; Journey token cards are all about big spikes. Although if there's another Journey token card in the game, Tin is good at absorbing face-down plays.

Statue: I get how it's boring, rewarding self-junking with VP doesn't feel great; when it's strong, there are a lot of Coppers to empty out, creating a long and repetitive game. Outside of engines, like especially Gardens or Duke strategies, this might be a powerhouse needing to be tamed.

Sawyer: I basically echo X-tra. It's a very engine-focused card, so much so that you only need one of them. There's something about this that bores me slightly...like, it feels as though it's trying to be a Project?

Miller: Almost entirely about emptying piles, the times when you'll gain a different card are few; Curses to Coppers, a trasher finished with, gained Silvers to a $3 Action, Cavalry. It's unreliable as well so it's not that great at game speed control since it can't easily focus select piles, and chance removing Provinces when you're behind is a sting too.

Cheesemaker: City Quarter is fun to build towards, so this cheap lab is simple yet fairly interesting. It may be $4.

Pastoral Village: Very simple, it can be Fugitive but with more restrictions. Just the sort of Village for this set, especially with the various ways to gain Victories to hand.

Cliffside Village: Optional Treasure injection for an engine. It can exist for sure, mildly interesting. Sometimes gaining a Copper to hand early in the turn (when you play Villages), just in case, then to go on to draw well enough can be sad, but that's part of the newbie trap of this card. As X-tra said tfb is among the strongest synergies.

Potter: Looks like you should try to get this mid game to get $5+s and ultimately one for a Province or Colony. Possibly just because it can gain Victories, some of the vanilla should be dropped for balance, but it's nice how this likes cantrips yet it would ask quite a lot of the Kingdom for this to like chains of itself. It should be interesting to analyse its viability and timing each time.

Out of time now, but Cheesemaker, Pastoral Village and Potter get good votes from me.
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Aquila

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Re: Dominion: Arcadia
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2021, 05:33:36 pm »
+2

Redsmith: It's a potent Copper trasher that needs to keep re-trashing the Coppers it gains, which won't be too hard seeing that the gained Coppers go to hand. Sometimes of course the Copper is needed for economy, and depending on how many Redsmiths are in the deck trashing it later won't be too hard. So it likes having several copies, and some non-Copper payload. It could be rather strong, like Masquerade with 1 more +Card.

Whitesmith: The +Buy can be tricky to use, always coming with a Silver, and that's a good thing. Because of the Silvers and the implication of the choice 'what do you need more now?', it feels less about engines and more about big money or good stuff decks. It can play like Wayfarer in an engine of course, an expensive Smithy that injects some money into the deck.

Travelling Merchant: X-tra said it, it's draw with a safety net. It's only mildly interesting to me for this reason, there's not much strategy to it other than try to keep it for a while to maximise the investment. I guess it's another awkward +Buy. Other Smithy variants would be preferential in an engine, but in a thick good stuff deck it's desirable. Several cards in this set make this kind of deck, and it's a strategically easy card, so it's a good fit.

Spinster: I think I agree it's a touch too strong. But then if it cost $6, by the time you can afford it you would unlikely still be choosing $3s and $4s unless you were emptying piles.

Carpenter: I've toyed with buy-to-hand ideas for a while. Good that this is a terminal Action so it's hard to use bought Actions straight away, and the need for Action $ only (barring Capitalism) adds further challenge. I'm seeing neat interactions within this set too, like Redsmith and some of the outtakes.

Meadow: X-tra's comments are concise with regards the principles of how it feels. Investing $6 into a pure Victory, you'd want it to give 5 or maybe 4 VP, which would be 4 or more left in the pile. The maximum point potential for one is 5 for 2-player, 7 for 3+, so initially a strong investment. With each purchase there's a potential extra point swing with the reduction to other players, so each Meadow is often at least 3VP.
So: this is very influential and not in too fun a way. If it were weaker, it would just feel worse in the way X-tra described. The premise of high payoff that depletes over time, so to think ahead to a realistic expected final outcome, could certainly go somewhere; but when other players cause the depletion it's sad. Who wants to set themselves up?

I may get to the outtakes later. Of these, I quite like Carpenter, and I'm lukewarm about the others; not that they're bad, they really do suit this expansion. Meadow, Spinster and Redsmith are to check for balance.
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