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Author Topic: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.1: Potion cost cards  (Read 20605 times)

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Qvist

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The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.1: Potion cost cards
« on: May 03, 2012, 08:35:05 am »
+8

Sorry for the loooong waiting. I just looked and found out that I've already finished this text, but just didn't post it here. I'm back and here it is.

The Best Potion Cost Cards
#10 Transmute (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 9.98 / Median: 10 / Mode: 10 / Standard Deviation: 0.2
Highest Rank(s): #9 (1x) / Lowest Rank(s): #10 (29x)

Which guy destroyed out unity? Only one player didn't rank Transmute last. That's the most obvious and consentient rank of all lists.

Why is that card so bad? You need trashers early in the game. For Transmute you need to open Potion. Then you buy a Transmute in turn 3/4 and have your Transmute somewhere between turn 5 and 8! That is really slow. And what's the benefit? You can trash Estates to get Gold, ok that's really nice, but only for the 3 starting Estates and you have to draw them together. If you trash Copper you get another Transmute! Why does anyone want that? And trash actions to get Duchies could only ne nice in the end game, but still make no big difference. You can also trash a Curse, but you won't get anything for that. For a pure trasher it's too slow, for a trash-for-benefit card it's too weak. When do you really want to buy one? Yes, it's better with dual-type cards like Great Hall (for Duchy and Gold) and you can heavily trash for Gold->Transmute->Duchy and try to three-pile, but I think that's just too slow in the most cases. I think the only reason when you want to buy it, if you want that Potion anyway.
#9 Philosopher's Stone (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 8.65 / Median: 9 / Mode: 9 / Standard Deviation: 1.1
Highest Rank(s): #5 (1x), #6 (1x), #7 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #9 (19x), #10 (1x)

Two third ranked Philosopher's Stone second last, still no surprise here. It has the second lowest deviation.

With Philosopher's Stone on the board and it is the only Potion cost card, it's often ignorable. And it anti-synergizes with all other Potion cards except for Familiar (with University you get a lot of cards, but mostly to build an engine). With a relative cost of ~5.5$ it's in direct comparism to Gold. This means you need 20 cards and no drawing power. With no +Buy you need 10 turns to achieve this. This is often way too late. This card gets better and better the longer the game lasts. But you want high value treasures early in the game. The only reason going for it, may be in Curse-heavy games where it's obvious you get big decks.
#8 Possession (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 6.88 / Median: 7.5 / Mode: 8 / Standard Deviation: 2.3
Highest Rank(s): #1 (2x), #3 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #9 (5x)

Possession has the highest deviation of all cards in this list. That shows the range going from first to second last.

Possession seems so powerful, but in reality it isn't. It's just frustating. There's much to say about Possession, but I keep it short. First you have to realize, that it's really the most expensive kingdom card in the game so far as it costs ~8.5$. So, if you want it and it is the only Potion cost card on the board, don't open Potion. And the cost also means it's in direct competition with Province. When you've bought a Possession you mostly could have bought a Province instead. Its high cost makes it stronger in Colony games. When does it shine? Especially in 2-player games when your opponent opens with strong cards like Ambassador or Masquerade, you may look after an opportunity to send good cards (of course especially Provinces and Colonies) to you. With King's Court Possession is just madness. With Council Room or especially Governor you can boost the turn you get from your opponent and may even boost your own turn afterwards if he has them too. When your opponent has strong trash-for-benefit cards like Apprentice, you can even trash Provinces or Colonies to get the benefit. And if he has cards with choices like Envoy you either get stronger benefit or can mess his deck up. And if he has duration cards you can also profit from them. It may seem now that there are many situations where Possession is good. That's true, but still often ignorable because of its slowness.
#7 University (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 6.43 / Median: 6 / Mode: 6 / Standard Deviation: 1.4
Highest Rank(s): #3 (1x), #4 (1x), #5 (2x) / Lowest Rank(s): #9 (3x)

University was voted on #6 12 times, so it has a pretty low deviation.

The effect of University is by far not bad. Unlike Workshop you don't need to spend an action to gain a card and you don't get weak $4 cards, you get strong $5 ones. And you are able to play all of them because of the +2 Actions. But, it has the same problem as all Potion cards have. It's very slow. If you go for University and open Potion/X you lose at least one reshuffle to get the critical $5 cards (and you need to get a Potion only to get strong non-Potion cards, what?). You you have to be sure to have enough time to catch up and this really depends if the cards on the board are really so strong that you want as many as you can get. So, it's very board dependant and is really nice with Library, Wharf, City, Torturer and any money producing cantrip. It has only few combination potential with other Potion cards. University/Scrying Pool looks nice but is even slower. Only University/Vineyard is really strong. Beware of 3-piling with University.
#6 Apothecary (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 5.27 / Median: 5.5 / Mode: 8 / Standard Deviation: 2.1
Highest Rank(s): #2 (4x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (6x), #9 (1x)

Apothecary has the second highest deviation, as many voted it on #2 and on #8 too.

Apothecary seems very weak at first glance because of its profit of Copper. But unlike many other Potion cards it's very strong at the start at getting very strong cards very early in the game. Buy a early Forge and with your next big hand you can get rid of all your Coppers; or get an early King's Court or Goons. Later in the game it's almost never a bad card, because it's at least a cantrip and even if it draws no cards you can set the order of your next cards (basically a Cartographer without the ability to discard). It's also strong if you build your strategy around Copper. Apothecary/Coppersmith can easily net you Provinces. The problem still is, it leaves the junk on top of the deck. With Native Village you can use this as an advantage. With 8 Coppers, a few Apothecaries and at least one Native Village you are able to buy a Province each turn. With no strong 6+ card  or no synergizing card on the board, Apothecary often is not worth a Potion.
#5 Golem (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 4.92 / Median: 5 / Mode: 5 / Standard Deviation: 1.9
Highest Rank(s): #2 (2x), #3 (6x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (3x), #9 (1x)

Golem still has a high deviation and is only 0.4 points above Apothecary. It was voted #5 6 times.

Like Throne Room, Golem's strength heavily depends from the action cards on the board, what makes it hard to rate. But it hasn't the drawback of Throne Room or King's Court to have at least one action card in hand. You can use Golem either in action-heavy decks and may be able to play more of them in your turns even with Curses or Victory cards in your deck. It acts also as a pseudo-village. Just beware of Golem+Trasher because you have to play the drawn action card and you don't want to risk trashing a Province. Or you use it to play your only 1-2 action cards in your deck everytime you play Golem. Counting House+X Golems guarantees to draw all Coppers in hand. Golem+Scheme+strong attack is also very nice because you can play your attack every turn. Even with those cards on board Golem is very expensive with a cost of ~6.5$. Don't fall into the trap to open Potion with Golem being the only Potion card on the board.
#4 Vineyard (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 4.8 / Median: 4.5 / Mode: 4 / Standard Deviation: 1.5
Highest Rank(s): #3 (7x) / Lowest Rank(s): #7 (3x), #8 (2x)

It was a close call, but Vineyard managed to beat Golem by 0.12 points. Relatively high consensus for an alternative victory card. It was voted #4 8 times.

Vineyard is another card that heavily depends from the action cards on the board. You definitely want +Buy or at least gainers to get enough action cards to make it worthwhile. +Buy is also better in getting Vineyards, because you don't waant to "waste" $6P for a Vineyard. Beside +Buy and gainers, you definitely need Villages or many catrips to be able to play all of your actions, cheap cantrips like Hamlet or Pawn are very good. Like all alternative VP strategies, you can totally ignore Provinces what gives you more time getting more action cards. Unlika all other Potion cards you can delay buying the Potion until mid-game when you already have a good running engine. It has nearly no practical limit in the max VP you can get from one Vineyard what can make it really strong and often a clearly superior strategy over Provinces.
#3 Alchemist (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 3.7 / Median: 3 / Mode: 2 / Standard Deviation: 1.7
Highest Rank(s): #1 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #6 (1x), #7 (2x)

Alchemist is the second card that managed to get voted on #1. It was voted #2 8 times.

Alchemist is strictly superior to Laboratory and if you have a lot of Alchemists to draw most of your deck, you're almost unstoppable. But how do you get there? First you have to buy Potion and then you have to spend the next turns to buy Alchemists. That's really slow and with no source of +Buy, you aren't able to build up your econmy at the same time. Alchemists are therefore very powerful in Colony games, but often weak in Province games unless you haven't any supporting card. That's the reason Herbalist was added in Alchemy. With Herbalist you're able to put your Potion back and get the needed +Buy. Cards that profit from big handsizes like Bank (if you have the +Buys) are great. Outpost also synergizes perfectly. Beware of opponents playing with Minions or Masquerade.
#2 Scrying Pool (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 2.9 / Median: 3 / Mode: 2 / Standard Deviation: 1.7
Highest Rank(s): #1 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #6 (1x), #7 (1x), #8 (1x)

With 10 players voting Scrying Pool second and a clear lead over Alchemist it has a deserved second place.

Attacks that mess up the top of your deck are often weak. Scrying Pool is different because of its drawing power. It may draw your whole deck. Buy you mustn't a lot of treasure cards in your deck. Its power is therefore dependant of trasher on the board and action cards that net you money. Secret Chamber/Vault are especially nice, just discard all action cards and keep one Scrying Pool in hand to get a lot of money and draw them again with your Scrying Pool. Attacks that tend to be swingy because of the top card of your opponent, like Jester or Swindler, are gaining value with Scrying Pools, because you can choose which card to keep on top. If those cards are not in the supply, Scrying Pool is just a Spy (with draws sometimes an additional card) and not worth the Potion.
#1 Familiar (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 1.4 / Median: 1 / Mode: 1 / Standard Deviation: 1.1
Highest Rank(s): #1 (22x) / Lowest Rank(s): #2 (6x), #4 (1x), #6 (1x)

With the second lowest deviation and over two third voting it first, there's no doubt: Familiar is the strongest Potion card.

Cursing attacks are the strongest cards in the game. A cantrip curser is just ridiculous strong. If you haven't a plan for defense to get no curses at all or easily deal with them (which is very rare), you can't skip over Familiar. What makes Familiar one of the most hated cards is its cost.

To the favourite cards
To the Edition 2
« Last Edit: July 03, 2012, 08:26:56 am by Qvist »
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WanderingWinder

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2012, 08:48:45 am »
+3

Alchemist absurdly overrated, no shock there.
I guess other than this, it's not so terrible. I would point out that familiar is the cursing attack which is directly a cursing attack that you can probably skip most often, without any kind of defensive plan to stop the curses any more than 'get a big lead before they're much of an issue'. You can also defend against it with trashing more than most other cursers, just because you get time to do so. Of course, that's not to say that you can ignore it often, at least without other curse-givers around.

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2012, 10:51:59 am »
0

It occurs to me that besides Familiar, Golem is another potion-cost card that Philosopher's Stone synergizes with, both being less effective in decks with heavy draw.  Anyway, I agree with WW:  move Alchemist down to either side of University, and this list looks just about right.  The Apothecary/Golem pair is a close-call, so the fact that the ratings themselves were close is the takeaway there, not which one wound up edging out the other.

It's kind of neat how strongly some of the Alchemy cards are tied to each other.  More than any other set, there seem to be intentionally fabricated combos you're meant to use:  Alchemist/Herbalist, University/Vineyard, and University/Scrying Pool are as perfect for each other as Dominion cards can be.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2012, 10:55:01 am »
0

I wouldn't consider University/Scrying Pool a combo, as on boards where a Scrying Pool strategy is viable, Scrying Pool/Scrying Pool will tend to be the better combo. I mean, maybe you throw in a University at some point, but mostly it's just in the way of buying more Scrying Pools.
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ecq

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2012, 11:16:20 am »
+1

More important than the list itself, thanks for finishing it, and I'm glad to see you're around.  People were starting to worry.
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cherdano

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2012, 11:54:19 am »
0

I am surprised University is ranked so low. It seems a great card whenever there are 2+ power $5 cards and you can use the village effect - this isn't that rare. Am I overrating it?
With University as the only potion card, I would buy a potion much more often than with Golem as the only potion card.
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WanderingWinder

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2012, 11:56:42 am »
+3

I am surprised University is ranked so low. It seems a great card whenever there are 2+ power $5 cards and you can use the village effect - this isn't that rare. Am I overrating it?
With University as the only potion card, I would buy a potion much more often than with Golem as the only potion card.
Yeah. Thing is, it's slooooow. Because you have to take time to buy the potion, then time to buy the university, and only then can you start to grab actions. Whereas if you just buy silvers, you're probably getting to those power 5 cards a lot faster. Now, eventually you grab more than them. But in the meantime, they're building up a big advantage. So you really need those lots of actions to be very much more powerful than just a few.

ecq

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2012, 12:09:29 pm »
0

I am surprised University is ranked so low. It seems a great card whenever there are 2+ power $5 cards and you can use the village effect - this isn't that rare. Am I overrating it?
With University as the only potion card, I would buy a potion much more often than with Golem as the only potion card.
Yeah. Thing is, it's slooooow. Because you have to take time to buy the potion, then time to buy the university, and only then can you start to grab actions. Whereas if you just buy silvers, you're probably getting to those power 5 cards a lot faster. Now, eventually you grab more than them. But in the meantime, they're building up a big advantage. So you really need those lots of actions to be very much more powerful than just a few.

When some of those power $5 cards are terminal, the non-University player would need to be buying villages in addition to Silver.  Further, the treasures would tend to make it harder to line up +actions with terminals.  Any time action density is a consideration (this, plus Conspirator, Scrying Pool, KC, ...), University seems like the better bet.

Also, whenever action card gain is useful in and of itself.  University + Apprentice is a powerhouse in most kingdoms, as is University + Vineyards.  University also gives a little more control over the end-game.  If you have a few of them, you're more able to pile out when it's advantageous.
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WanderingWinder

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2012, 12:14:10 pm »
0

I am surprised University is ranked so low. It seems a great card whenever there are 2+ power $5 cards and you can use the village effect - this isn't that rare. Am I overrating it?
With University as the only potion card, I would buy a potion much more often than with Golem as the only potion card.
Yeah. Thing is, it's slooooow. Because you have to take time to buy the potion, then time to buy the university, and only then can you start to grab actions. Whereas if you just buy silvers, you're probably getting to those power 5 cards a lot faster. Now, eventually you grab more than them. But in the meantime, they're building up a big advantage. So you really need those lots of actions to be very much more powerful than just a few.

When some of those power $5 cards are terminal, the non-University player would need to be buying villages in addition to Silver.  Further, the treasures would tend to make it harder to line up +actions with terminals.  Any time action density is a consideration (this, plus Conspirator, Scrying Pool, KC, ...), University seems like the better bet.

Also, whenever action card gain is useful in and of itself.  University + Apprentice is a powerhouse in most kingdoms, as is University + Vineyards.  University also gives a little more control over the end-game.  If you have a few of them, you're more able to pile out when it's advantageous.
Sure. I very much agree with everything you're saying, except your first sentence. Because univs are pretty weak as villages, and for a LOT of terminals, particularly if you only get a few anyway, you just don't need villages, don't need to chain.

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2012, 12:35:51 pm »
0

This is the only list I'm in almost complete agreement with. I'd move alchemist down, but maybe still above university (difference: each card is a trap on many boards, maybe roughly the same percentage. But when university is a trap, you just lose if you open potion; you might get lucky with alchemists.)
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chwhite

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2012, 12:36:55 pm »
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I'm pretty sure that I was the combo-breaker that ranked Philosopher's Stone last instead of Transmute.

And I stand by that assessment.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2012, 12:47:40 pm »
+1

For my money, Alchemist is just barely better than Possession. The rest of the list I agree with, except maybe switching Golem and Vineyards, but hey, they are close.

But seriously, why do people swoon over Alchemist? "Okay, now that those first 9 or 10 turns are out of the way, I am ready for green, and drawing my whole deck! Yes, I drew my whole deck a second time. And... oops, didn't draw Potion, that's over with. And I'm 2 Provinces behind."
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Robz888

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2012, 12:51:12 pm »
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I'm pretty sure that I was the combo-breaker that ranked Philosopher's Stone last instead of Transmute.

And I stand by that assessment.

I am what passes for a Philosopher's Stone apologist I guess, but I have to admit I was mostly wrong about it combo-ing with IGGs in a different thread. But, it's better than Transmute! That's just crazy talk.
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jsh357

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2012, 12:55:50 pm »
0

Alchemist
For my money, Alchemist is just barely better than Possession. The rest of the list I agree with, except maybe switching Golem and Vineyards, but hey, they are close.

But seriously, why do people swoon over Alchemist? "Okay, now that those first 9 or 10 turns are out of the way, I am ready for green, and drawing my whole deck! Yes, I drew my whole deck a second time. And... oops, didn't draw Potion, that's over with. And I'm 2 Provinces behind."

Alchemist stacks are popular because they're the most obvious engine in the game. (All the components are written on the card, setting up's a no-brainer, etc)  I am divided on making fun of them because I feel like I've lost to Alchemist strategies a lot, but on the other hand, it's my #10 "Win Given available" on CR so I guess I can.

I used to love the card when I had just started playing, but I realized that it wasn't paying off so much and have avoided going Alchemist a lot since.  It's a good support card, though, especially if it's not the only Potion cost card in the Kingdom.

I would personally not rate it above Vineyard or Golem and maybe not even Apothecary.  Otherwise, I'm in decent agreement with this list.

On that note... I wonder if it would be fun to do sort of a card "book club," like have a thread discussing/rating a card going once a week?  Maybe see how its results compare to Qvist's in the end.  I love stuff like that, though I'm sure it's not for everyone.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2012, 12:59:56 pm by jsh357 »
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #14 on: May 03, 2012, 01:00:34 pm »
0

I would argue that Possession is underranked considerably. Yes, it's ignorable a large percentage of games. But is it really more ignorable than Golem or Alchemist (which is clearly overranked.)

I'd say I probably pick up a possession in a higher percentage of games in which it is in than Golem.. I probably pick it up about as frequently as alchemist.

Also, Vineyards is overranked a bit. It's a viable strategy a good deal less often than Apothecary or University.

Finally, I'd say University > Golem. You need two good, relatively spammable 4s/5s and a lengthened game (Alt VP, VP tokens or Colonies) to make university worth it. You need a bit more to make golem a smart buy.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #15 on: May 03, 2012, 01:19:01 pm »
0

Looking back, I discover that I was one of the benighted souls who ranked Alchemist #3.  What in the world was I thinking?  It's a nice card but definitely not as good as Apothecary, Vineyard, and Golem.

I love Apothecary more and more every day.  It's probably not quite as good as Vineyard, but I enjoy playing with it a lot more. 

I have never gotten the hang of Golem.  It is clearly a good card, but I can't figure out how to play it.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #16 on: May 03, 2012, 01:44:47 pm »
0

I'm pretty sure that I was the combo-breaker that ranked Philosopher's Stone last instead of Transmute.

What puts Philosopher's Stone above Transmute in my mind is that there are (albeit few) cards that Philosopher's Stone has good synergy with and it can potentially be an effective counter to certain strategies, whereas Transmute is just bad in general. There are no effective strategies off the top of my head that rely on Transmute, and the only time that I see players make effective use of them is when there's another potion cost card in the kingdom and curses being flung around.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #17 on: May 03, 2012, 01:53:56 pm »
+1

Also, Vineyards is overranked a bit. It's a viable strategy a good deal less often than Apothecary or University.

I disagree. Vineyards are a semi-viable strategy or nice late-game pickup on at least 65% of the boards that I see and the crushingly dominant strategy on maybe 20-30 (you just need hamlet, or herbalist, or transmute, or worker's village, or any gainer, or...). Apothecary is nice on even more boards but dominant on far fewer; that one is a toss-up. University is a trap on at least 50% of boards, i.e. the person who buys university loses, which you can't say about the other two cards; admittedly it is quite dominant with torturer, watchtower, and library.
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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #18 on: May 03, 2012, 02:15:32 pm »
+2

Okay, this is convincing me it's time to get off my rear and write that article on Transmute I've been knocking around in my head for a while. 

It's not a good card, and it's almost never a star, but it's viable way more often than people realize.  My stats certainly seem to indicate that I do much better with it than with PStones: buy 21% rather than 14%; equal win rate win or lose (1.24/1.24) rather than doing much worse with Stones (1.10/1.20).  Transmute is my fourth highest "Effect With" and I very much enjoy surprising my opponents by getting effective use out of it.

And I even played a game yesterday where I avoided the Mutes and got crushed by an opponent who went for them (I think it was ehunt in fact), so it's not like this is all esoteric knowledge that only I know.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2012, 02:26:34 pm by chwhite »
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blueblimp

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #19 on: May 03, 2012, 02:25:17 pm »
0

It occurs to me that besides Familiar, Golem is another potion-cost card that Philosopher's Stone synergizes with, both being less effective in decks with heavy draw.  Anyway, I agree with WW:  move Alchemist down to either side of University, and this list looks just about right.  The Apothecary/Golem pair is a close-call, so the fact that the ratings themselves were close is the takeaway there, not which one wound up edging out the other.

It's kind of neat how strongly some of the Alchemy cards are tied to each other.  More than any other set, there seem to be intentionally fabricated combos you're meant to use:  Alchemist/Herbalist, University/Vineyard, and University/Scrying Pool are as perfect for each other as Dominion cards can be.

And don't forget Herbalist/PStone. PStone is usually really bad, but Herbalist is so tailor-made to combo with it that the combo is strong. (Top-deck the Potions to buy more PStones. Bloat your deck with buys. Top-deck the PStones later. Use the +buys to mitigate multi-PStone hands.)
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ecq

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #20 on: May 03, 2012, 02:26:29 pm »
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And I even played a game yesterday where I avoided the Mutes and got crushed by an opponent who went for them (I think it was ehunt in fact), so it's not like this is all esoteric knowledge that only I know.
Link

I assume that's the one?  "Crushed" is a strong word, but interesting game nonetheless.
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chwhite

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #21 on: May 03, 2012, 02:27:55 pm »
0

And I even played a game yesterday where I avoided the Mutes and got crushed by an opponent who went for them (I think it was ehunt in fact), so it's not like this is all esoteric knowledge that only I know.
Link

I assume that's the one?  "Crushed" is a strong word, but interesting game nonetheless.

It felt more lopsided than the final score was.  This may be because I'm usually the player going for Vineyards and Transmutes instead (though I don't actually combine the two often), and I was feeling the impending dread of being beaten at my own game. :P
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ehunt

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #22 on: May 03, 2012, 02:42:21 pm »
+4

And I even played a game yesterday where I avoided the Mutes and got crushed by an opponent who went for them (I think it was ehunt in fact), so it's not like this is all esoteric knowledge that only I know.

This clever gambit has forced me into the position of either having to admit that my win was undeserved or lose my fondest Dominion argument: transmute is the worst card in the game. Well played.

On principle, I choose the latter: chwhite's strategy is better, would certainly have won if I hadn't split 5/2, and should have won anyway except for some very unfortunate tactician luck.

My actual decision-making process went like this: "OK, vineyards, are they viable? Not really, no +buy except tactician, and I guess pseudo +buy from transmute, but that can't be right. Well, whatever, I split 5-2, I open tactician and decide what to do later. Wait, he opens great hall? Oh God, he's going for vineyards and transmutes. OK, I'm wrong, it's a vineyards board, fine, I'll go for vineyards and transmutes." Many turns later: "oh. great hall + Conspirator. Right. I guess I lose."
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WanderingWinder

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #23 on: May 03, 2012, 03:06:35 pm »
+1

Okay, this is convincing me it's time to get off my rear and write that article on Transmute I've been knocking around in my head for a while. 

It's not a good card, and it's almost never a star, but it's viable way more often than people realize.  My stats certainly seem to indicate that I do much better with it than with PStones: buy 21% rather than 14%; equal win rate win or lose (1.24/1.24) rather than doing much worse with Stones (1.10/1.20).  Transmute is my fourth highest "Effect With" and I very much enjoy surprising my opponents by getting effective use out of it.

And I even played a game yesterday where I avoided the Mutes and got crushed by an opponent who went for them (I think it was ehunt in fact), so it's not like this is all esoteric knowledge that only I know.
All that says is that YOU are better with it. Not that it's better. I mean, I can throw out my stats with the two cards. Phil Stone: +% is 30.1, I buy almost a full one per game (.95), win rate with is 1.28, without is 1.26. Effect with: 2.70, without: .45.
Transmute: +% is... 9%, I buy .19 per game, win rate with is 1.22, without is 1.26, effect with is 1.81, without is -0.35.
Doesn't mean a lot.

chwhite

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Re: THE Dominion Card List(s): Potion cost cards
« Reply #24 on: May 03, 2012, 03:28:19 pm »
+1

And I even played a game yesterday where I avoided the Mutes and got crushed by an opponent who went for them (I think it was ehunt in fact), so it's not like this is all esoteric knowledge that only I know.

This clever gambit has forced me into the position of either having to admit that my win was undeserved or lose my fondest Dominion argument: transmute is the worst card in the game. Well played.

On principle, I choose the latter: chwhite's strategy is better, would certainly have won if I hadn't split 5/2, and should have won anyway except for some very unfortunate tactician luck.

My actual decision-making process went like this: "OK, vineyards, are they viable? Not really, no +buy except tactician, and I guess pseudo +buy from transmute, but that can't be right. Well, whatever, I split 5-2, I open tactician and decide what to do later. Wait, he opens great hall? Oh God, he's going for vineyards and transmutes. OK, I'm wrong, it's a vineyards board, fine, I'll go for vineyards and transmutes." Many turns later: "oh. great hall + Conspirator. Right. I guess I lose."

And on principle I contend that your strategy was better: some of my "bad tactician luck" had to do with wanting to play my cash rather than always double-tac because I needed to deny at least a couple Vineyards.  And even if I had tried to just double-tac and ignore the Vineyards I suspect that either a) fizzling eventually or b) greening too late was inevitable.  Had I not done that, I would've probably had another Province or two, but you also could have bought the entire Vineyards stack and pumped them even higher than 7VP each.

I think Transmute is clearly better than Thief, Scout, Adventurer, and Counting House at a minimum; and there are probably a half dozen or so other cards which are plausibly just as bad (including PStone).
« Last Edit: May 03, 2012, 08:34:32 pm by chwhite »
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