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Author Topic: With my Dominion Time Machine...  (Read 34052 times)

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sitnaltax

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With my Dominion Time Machine...
« on: June 27, 2012, 08:20:23 pm »
+3

With my Dominion Time Machine, I would make the following changes, which are really startlingly few:

  • Reword Throne Room to include "you may," like King's Court
  • Change Masquerade so that the passing only happens if every player has at least one card in hand
  • Change Possession so that it can work no more than once per turn
  • Reduce the cost of Familiar to $2P
  • Remove the attack from Scrying Pool

Throne Room is just for consistency and clarity.

Masquerade removes the possibility of unbreakable pins, but doesn't otherwise change the card.

The other changes have a little more balance flavor, I suppose:

Familiar is "obviously" too strong at $2P, just as Chapel is too strong at $2. Like Chapel's low cost, this makes broadens the availability of the power card; the change would make it much less likely that you can't buy one on T3/4. The number of times where the extra $1 could be leveraged into improving a useful purchase is tiny, although I suppose that Woodcutter/Potion would be a decent opening.

I don't hate Possession, but if it's viable and there's a threat of multiple Possessions per turn, then too many times the solution is to make your deck terrible. This is an interesting direction for the game to take, but it can make the game take so unexpectedly long that I think it's worth changing.

Finally, I grant myself the chance to poke at one peeve that might not be justified: the change to Scrying Pool is to increase the speed of Scrying Pool turns, which are a peeve of mine. I hate Tournament more, but at least it's fast.
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Grujah

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2012, 08:44:45 pm »
0

Dude, attack part is my favourite part after drawing lots of actions.

My fav combo is that + Jester. Get just what you need on opponent's deck, Jester it, then draw it with whatever (another pool if nothing else).
Its awesomely awesome when you've drawn your whole deck, than let opponent keep gold on top, Jester it, pick it up with Village, Salvage it for 6.  8) Actually done that.
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sitnaltax

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2012, 08:49:27 pm »
+1

Dude, attack part is my favourite part after drawing lots of actions.

My fav combo is that + Jester. Get just what you need on opponent's deck, Jester it, then draw it with whatever (another pool if nothing else).
Its awesomely awesome when you've drawn your whole deck, than let opponent keep gold on top, Jester it, pick it up with Village, Salvage it for 6.  8) Actually done that.

My problem isn't that it's not badass; my problem is that I can watch an entire episode of a TV show while you're taking that turn. Especially if God forbid Hamlet is on the board.
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Titandrake

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2012, 08:57:13 pm »
+1

I'd leave Scrying Pool attack because it makes the action chain part of Scrying Pool less obvious. The discovery opportunity of "Oh wait, Scrying Pool isn't Spy, it's much better than Spy!" seems like a better thing to keep. Also, I'm pretty sure that the long turns are more a result of the deck being an action-chain, rather than Scrying Pool itself being the problem. (This is for Iso; in real life it would probably be quite horrid.)

Honestly, I'd rather Possesion not be a card, but if it must stay in the set it should work more than once per turn. It's too deliciously evil! You can't get rid of something that mean, it makes people like Morgrim7 sad :(

The rest seem reasonable, although the Masquerade case shows up so rarely that the added text might feel out of place.
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werothegreat

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2012, 09:14:59 pm »
0

The only one of these I support would be the wording change to Throne Room.  Possession is hilarious because you can play it so many times - it's the only way you can get lots of extra turns, the caveat being it's with someone else's deck, and it can't be infinite, because playing Possession in a Possessed turn only helps your opponent.  And the Masquerade pin is so rare - how often do you actually have KC, Goons and Masq all in the same Kingdom?  And while you're getting all the required cards, and trashing down to a 5 card deck, your opponent might be adopting a quicker strategy.  If I were to change any cards, it'd be Outpost, so we can finally figure out what the hell to do with Outpost and Possession, and change Ironworks to "If it would be a(n)..." so we can have our Blue Dog, and eat it, too.  Not that I'd ever take a Silver over a Great Hall, anyway.
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eHalcyon

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2012, 09:17:34 pm »
0

The only one of these I support would be the wording change to Throne Room.  Possession is hilarious because you can play it so many times - it's the only way you can get lots of extra turns, the caveat being it's with someone else's deck, and it can't be infinite, because playing Possession in a Possessed turn only helps your opponent.  And the Masquerade pin is so rare - how often do you actually have KC, Goons and Masq all in the same Kingdom?  And while you're getting all the required cards, and trashing down to a 5 card deck, your opponent might be adopting a quicker strategy.  If I were to change any cards, it'd be Outpost, so we can finally figure out what the hell to do with Outpost and Possession, and change Ironworks to "If it would be a(n)..." so we can have our Blue Dog, and eat it, too.  Not that I'd ever take a Silver over a Great Hall, anyway.

Possession can be infinite in solitaire! ;)

And Masquerade pin also works with Militiate and Margrave.  And Outpost too, I think?
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werothegreat

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2012, 09:19:20 pm »
0

Possession can be infinite in solitaire! ;)

Oh happenstance, I did that once.  My head started to hurt.

And Masquerade pin also works with Militiate and Margrave.  And Outpost too, I think?

I think the point of KC-Goons is that you can still manage to get VP while having a 5-card deck.  You wouldn't have any motivation to do it with Militia or Margrave, because you wouldn't have any cards either, so neither of you would win.  And no one starts their turn with an Outpost hand, so that would be impossible.
« Last Edit: June 27, 2012, 09:21:37 pm by werothegreat »
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eHalcyon

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2012, 09:26:26 pm »
0

And Masquerade pin also works with Militiate and Margrave.  And Outpost too, I think?

I think the point of KC-Goons is that you can still manage to get VP while having a 5-card deck.  You wouldn't have any motivation to do it with Militia or Margrave, because you wouldn't have any cards either, so neither of you would win.  And no one starts their turn with an Outpost hand, so that would be impossible.

No, you don't have to gain points with the pin.  What you do is you grind down their deck until they have nothing (except Copper, maybe) and then you rebuild with a huge head start.  And even as you rebuild, you can keep attacking.

With Outpost, I think the general idea was to play it, then KC-Masq to take out 3 of their cards, then KC-Masq during your Outpost turn to take out the remaining 2.
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chwhite

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2012, 10:08:06 pm »
0

There are three things I would definitely do, and a few other things I'd consider but probably pass on doing, in the interest of not mucking with a good thing.

The first two are the same as your first two: fix Throne Room and Masquerade as stated.  The third would be to improve Scout somehow, either by making it cheaper and/or looking at more cards and/or taking Curses into hand.  There's no good reason why it has to cost $4, and it is so marginal in even Intrigue-heavy setups that its power level is certainly a mistake in a way that even other bad cards aren't.

Things I might like to do but don't feel a burning need to: buff Adventurer and Counting House, put more Durations in more expansions, print the game with 16 of each Victory card (or at least 16 Provinces), to keep the ratios same in 4p as they are with 2 or 3.
« Last Edit: June 27, 2012, 10:14:33 pm by chwhite »
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werothegreat

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2012, 10:36:45 pm »
0

The third would be to improve Scout somehow, either by making it cheaper and/or looking at more cards and/or taking Curses into hand.  There's no good reason why it has to cost $4, and it is so marginal in even Intrigue-heavy setups that its power level is certainly a mistake in a way that even other bad cards aren't.

A great combo is actually Scout-Crossroads-Alt Victory.  Buy Gardens or Tunnels or something (probably Tunnels), use Scout to get them in your hand, then get the maximum amount of cards out of Crossroads.  Admittedly, it would probably make more sense at $3.
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Robz888

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2012, 11:02:59 pm »
+4

I guess I have to go back in time to right before you invented your time machine so that I can stop you from going back in time and changing Scrying Pool. I REALLY like Scyring Pool the way it is.
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ftl

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2012, 11:10:21 pm »
+1

Interestingly, the Scrying Pool works a lot nicer IRL than online. IRL when I find a bad card to keep on top of their deck, I just say "okay, keep that one for the rest of the Scrying Pools" and then the Scrying Pool is noninteractive for the rest of the turn, in terms of how much time it takes to play.
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ycz6

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2012, 11:14:22 pm »
0

Interestingly, the Scrying Pool works a lot nicer IRL than online. IRL when I find a bad card to keep on top of their deck, I just say "okay, keep that one for the rest of the Scrying Pools" and then the Scrying Pool is noninteractive for the rest of the turn, in terms of how much time it takes to play.
This, and also the cards in your hand don't move around unpredictably when you pick up a bunch of new ones at once.
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Adrienaline

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2012, 12:26:09 am »
+9

I guess I have to go back in time to right before you invented your time machine so that I can stop you from going back in time and changing Scrying Pool. I REALLY like Scyring Pool the way it is.

Maybe you've both already gone back in time then...
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jonts26

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2012, 12:38:14 am »
+22

If I had a dominion time machine, I'd go FORWARD in time and play Dark Ages and Guilds.
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Obi Wan Bonogi

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2012, 12:49:27 am »
+1

Solid ideas!

My time machine trip would change all the treasures from being the same color.  Why can't my gold be gold and my silver be silver?  Was sad to see the screenshots of the official ap show this unchanged =(
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Robz888

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2012, 01:54:29 am »
+3

I guess I have to go back in time to right before you invented your time machine so that I can stop you from going back in time and changing Scrying Pool. I REALLY like Scyring Pool the way it is.

Maybe you've both already gone back in time then...

I've actually already made numerous trips into the past where I correct all of the Dominion timeline aberrations. This has included chasing theory into the past and preventing him from giving Laboratory a +$1 in order to justify his later placement of it on the Best $5 cards list.

I also repaired the alternate timeline where the Alliance of Engine Builders deleted Hinterlands, and created a new rule where Colony must appear in every game (but not Platinum).
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Obi Wan Bonogi

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2012, 02:09:34 am »
0

I also repaired the alternate timeline where the Alliance of Engine Builders deleted Hinterlands, and created a new rule where Colony must appear in every game (but not Platinum).

Noble work, sir.
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Donald X.

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2012, 02:21:09 am »
+64

I'm there for you guys with the tough answers.

Main set:

The big thing is to add more replayability. There are six vanilla cards and probably five would have been fine; the obvious one to replace is Woodcutter. Woodcutter is a fine card for the main set but the other vanilla cards are all better. That means all of the +buy cards would cost $5 but I can live with that. After that, Feast adds very little. Chancellor doesn't add much and would have been better in Intrigue (where it came from); the fact that it's a puzzler is way better in an expansion than in the main set. And finally there's Spy. Spy is slow to resolve, that's the big thing. Over the years I have learned that ideally Spy-type attacks don't have +1 action, or don't involve a decision, or both. Rabble is exactly what I want. Spy has +1 action and involves a decision, so you potentially make tons of decisions per turn. I like decisions but man Spy is not where to get them. It initially got to interact with two attacks that trashed cards from the top of your deck, and that's cool, but now it only interacts with Thief (in the main set that is), and that combo just isn't worth the slot.

The way to think of these things is, imagine the replacement cards. Let's say I just take out Woodcutter and Feast and put in Wishing Well and Coppersmith. Those are not top-of-the-line adored-by-all go-in-every-deck cards. But they still give you more to do than Woodcutter and Feast do.

It would be nice if Thief were stronger, but it already scares new players, and once everyone was new. There are some wording tweaks; Throne Room and Moneylender should of course say "you may." I would try coloring the coins on the treasures. The Trash card should be a mat instead.

There are people who complain about various other cards, but I am happy with those, so there.

Intrigue:

Saboteur is the biggest mistake here. Some people hate it because it can trash Provinces, some because it's an attack that doesn't make resources (which was a surprise but there it is), some just don't like it because it's weak. Some people like it, but the kind of person who wants an attack like this deserves one that has fewer strikes against it - like, Swindler, there you go.

Moats have to be on the weak side, but I would probably still try to improve Secret Chamber. It also has the issue of making reactions confusing - the whole business of, reveal Secret Chamber, resolve it, reveal a Moat I drew off of it. It would be better to avoid that issue, even if it meant just not doing Secret Chamber's reaction.

I would look at ways to buff Scout. I would consider changing Mining Village to avoid invoking the enigmatic "lose track" rule. I would consider whether I like Bridge and Coppersmith as is, in their Throne-able glory, or if I would rather phrase them the way I think such stuff in general should be phrased, like Highway etc. Masquerade originally triggered gain/trash things; I would look at that again, but honestly I would be unlikely to just reword it to address the King's Court / Masquerade / Goons combo. Masquerade has a clear simple wording and I would rather kill the card than make the wording awful, an awful that you dear reader may be mystified as to the awfulness of, I have come to terms with that. But I'm not sure I need to kill the combo and Masquerade is a pretty cool card.

Seaside:

The biggest thing here is, the set has two cards that hand out junk that cost less than $5. Cards like that tend to dominate games, since people buy them turns 1-2 and start playing them fast, so it's bad to have two of them in one set, even though when they're in the same game the one defends against the other. I just don't want heavy-Seaside games to always have one of those cards. So either Ambassador or Sea Hag should be a more powerful card for $5. Ambassador looks more innocent so probably I would change Sea Hag.

Lookout is the dud of the set. The problem is, some people are terrified of trashing a good card with it. At the same time trashing bad cards looks less exciting to some players. And as a trasher it's not exceptional. So the overall package is a card that a lot of players don't want, but that some experienced players realize is okay but not special. I could instead have some other card more people liked.

Originally the set did not have tokens. Embargo put itself on a pile; Pirate Ship kept one treasure per attack and counted them; Pirate Ship and Native Village did have mats, but they were card-sized (when that changed I got to add Haven back in). If I had known the set would have counters, I would have tried to get more use out of them, just as I made two more VP token cards to go with Monument.

Outpost could be simpler. Ideally it would have you discard 2 at the start of your next turn, rather than having the wonky Clean-up-modifying effect it has. There was not enough time between when I realized that and when the card had to be finalized.

Again some people complain about various other cards but I am having none of it. Pirate Ship is weak but I don't think it should be stronger. I like Treasure Map as is. Fishing Village and Wharf are strong engine-enablers and well we are talking good times there. Pearl Diver and Navigator are not prized, but they look reasonable to me, and as I have said many times, if I made all cards better by making them maximally complex, the game would have no players. Explorer is fine, why do people even complain about Explorer. They can't all be the best $5 ever.

Alchemy:

The first big thing is that, I knew some people wouldn't appreciate the potion resource concept, so I put the expansion last. Then it was bumped up as the only thing I could get out quickly as a small set. I would put it last. This would simplify all of those threads where people ask what order to buy the expansions.

The next big thing is that, I knew some people wouldn't appreciate the potion concept, but did not realize that some people would find the set to be too slow. It has an action-chaining sub-theme, in order to make individual potion-costing cards good in games where there's only one card to buy with potions, and well this leads to longer games. I could potentially have put in two victory cards or treasures or both though, as those are cards you can buy multiples of (another solution to the problem that action-chaining was solving), and tweaked the card mix other ways to reduce either slowness or the perception of slowness.

Two things stand out here. First I could have swapped Philosopher's Stone with Bank. Bank was originally in this set, and the only reason I took it out was because Alchemy got pushed ahead of Prosperity, and Prosperity introduced treasures where the order of played treasures mattered. Philosopher's Stone did not quite require all of the rules that Bank did. But I could have sucked it up and had Bank anyway. It's a good fit for the set otherwise. And Philosopher's Stone, it is not such a slow card, but people sure think it is.

Second I could have dropped the attack from Scrying Pool. Scrying Pool did not originally have an attack. It got one because I felt the set should have two attacks, and the names were already in - it was a tight schedule and art was being made while I worked on the cards. "Scrying Pool" was the name that felt like it could attack, paired with a card that felt like it could attack (yes I could have replaced Golem with an attack, but that was not on the table, Golem was too awesome). Now did I really need two attacks? Not enough to muck up Scrying Pool. This change made the card slower, more wordy, and less special-seeming. Before it was this cool draw-lots-of-cards thing; now it's Spy, something something, some kind of Spy variant I think, I'll read the rest later. I would rather have the faster simpler cooler card. Again Spy itself is bad, it's too slow for what you get, and Scrying Pool's Spy is worse, because you've got card-drawing built-in to get you more of them.

Probably I would drop the potion clause from Apprentice. It got that because 1) it meant every card in the set interacted in some way with potions, and 2) it answers the question "what if I trash a card with potion in the cost" right on the card. But really, whatever, the simpler version is better.

Those are really the changes. Possession has way too long of a FAQ and would be better in a large expansion, which Alchemy originally was. It's a card some people adore though, and reasonable except for the FAQ issue. I don't know what can be done about the FAQ but I do not look at Possession and think, oh I shouldn't have made that one. Maybe Familiar should be cheaper, that's plausible.

Prosperity:

Prosperity got more testing than any other set, due to being pushed back for Alchemy. It did not need even more testing; whatever cards could be improved, it would not be worth spending time improving them. That's time that could be spent improving other expansions or working on other games. That's how I see it.

That said, Loan is easily the dud for me. I knew this during that extra testing period but decided to keep it. Looking at it in the set, it's okay. It has basically the same issues as Lookout, only not as bad; less experienced players are terrified of flipping over a Platinum that they now don't get to draw on this pass, while experienced players know that Loan is fine but not the best trasher ever; sometimes it's exciting because you are not buying any other treasures this game. I buy it more than Lookout, but whatever, in general this flipping over of cards thing has to come paired with something like "and get the good ones" in order to not bum people out too much. I don't think Venture makes people not buy it because maybe they'll flip over their good actions, although they will sometimes. But Loan, not a star. Anyway I kept it in knowing this.

Talisman would be a lot more exciting if it could get VP cards somehow, but some people do like it as is. There might have been a good tweak there, dunno. Counting House is narrow but a set can have a narrow card, some people love winning with narrow cards in the games where they are good enough. I just beat FTL's turn-two Mountebank with it so there you go.

Cornucopia:

Well I am pretty pleased with this one, but can probably still find something to poke at.

I guess my top thing is, it would be nice to have another card that really makes you want a variety of cards. Just to push the theme a little more. Probably Farming Village would go to have room for it. People like Farming Village but it's the off-theme card I need the least here.

Harvest does the flip over cards thing, and I would try to fix that up, see if I could make a version that did not make your good cards go by. I would like Bag of Gold to be better relative to the other prizes.

Sweet set, no lie.

Hinterlands:

Odds are I wasn't going to be so unhappy with this one either, given how recent it is. The one thing I can say is, I thought the set was simpler than people think it is, and I would be strongly tempted to simplify it a little given that I know people think it's complex. Basically make it a little more like the standalone it didn't end up being. To that end the obv. changes are to drop the reactions from Fool's Gold and Trader, to drop the above-line text on Duchess (just leave it +$2), and make a version of IGG that just has $1 or $2 on the top. Possibly either Inn or Mandarin could change, I like them both as-is but they would be some of the wordiest cards left at that point. Noble Brigand is wordy but it needs those words. Probably all of these changes sound awful to you, dear reader, but that's the way of the world. It's hard to see the value in the simplicity I'd gain, but there really is value there. Anyway I went with the more complex versions and it's not so bad that I did.

Promos:

Black Market could be a lot simpler. You make it gain cards directly, to get rid of the buying-during-action-phase thing, and then make a special dedicated deck for it, to simplify set-up. And hey I made that card, it's Tournament. Envoy and Walled Village are too lackluster to be promos. I am pleased with Governor and Stash. Stash is the perfect promo: it's wacky in a way that isn't actually tricky, it has a little subtlety to it, and yet it really isn't depriving some expansion of a cool card. Promos are bad; you either depvire the game of something in order to have it as a promo, or you do something wacky in the situation where people have the least access to the rules for it, or you do something not worth doing in the game and then why is it worth doing as a promo? But people love promos so what can you do.
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Robz888

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2012, 02:30:13 am »
+9

Awesome thoughts, Donald! Thanks.

I must say that I am very, very, very, very glad Hinterlands has all these cards the way they are. I adore Hinterlands and its complexity!
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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2012, 02:32:27 am »
+1

Honestly, I'd rather Possesion not be a card, but if it must stay in the set it should work more than once per turn. It's too deliciously evil! You can't get rid of something that mean, it makes people like Morgrim7 sad :(
Bwahahaha!!! ... How did you know I liked Possession?
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I sit here, lost amongst the cloud, that which is the brain of the Morgrim Mod. Perhaps I will learn the inner workings of that storied mind. Perhaps I will simply go mad.

Mad, I tell you.

Maaaaaaaaaaaaad." -Voltgloss
Dominion Notation: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=7265.msg206246#msg206246

Robz888

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #21 on: June 28, 2012, 02:35:02 am »
+7

This was my favorite line from Donald's explanation:

Explorer is fine, why do people even complain about Explorer. They can't all be the best $5 ever.
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I have been forced to accept that lackluster play is a town tell for you.

O

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2012, 02:45:14 am »
0

The way to think of these things is, imagine the replacement cards. Let's say I just take out Woodcutter and Feast and put in Wishing Well and Coppersmith. Those are not top-of-the-line adored-by-all go-in-every-deck cards. But they still give you more to do than Woodcutter and Feast do.


Would you really want to introduce the meticulous deck-counting that Wishing Well encourages in the base set? It's one of my favorite cards but I could have seen this turning away some.
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timchen

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #23 on: June 28, 2012, 02:47:54 am »
+2

Interesting thoughts Donald!

One thing I was thinking about Adventurer when reading through your description of Lookout though: is it like,  a reverse situation? I have just seen so many new players buy adventurer because either it costs 6 or it sounds cool. And sure experienced players will find it a fine card, occasionally useful but not always. But do we really have to have a card in the base set that the new players have to learn not to buy. especially since there are no other kingdom cards to compete with it at the same cost?

On the other hand, I cannot really recall if it has been answered somewhere, has it been tested how adventurer fare as a $5, or even a $4? (I would guess at $4 adventurer+BM is probably too strong, but hey, courtyard+BM is pretty strong too.) Well, I guess the base set does need some action that costs $6, but that is another problem...
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Dsell

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Re: With my Dominion Time Machine...
« Reply #24 on: June 28, 2012, 02:53:28 am »
+3

Giving Adventurer a +buy and replacing woodcutter could have been interesting. The problem with Adventurer is that when it's good, it's usually overkill.
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