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Author Topic: Dominion US National Championships  (Read 14376 times)

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clb

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #25 on: July 12, 2012, 10:56:31 pm »
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Tonight I'm going to a local gaming store (cafe mox) to play some 3p in-person Dominion. (if you are in Seattle, come on by!)

I am normally in the Seattle area, but I am on the road this week - so dissapointed that I cannot come and play with you IRL.
Best of luck at nationals.
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dondon151

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #26 on: July 13, 2012, 03:46:26 pm »
+1

So who is here and checked in already? I've never been to the O'Hare Hilton, but this place is pretty damn nice. Too nice for someone like me.
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ednever

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #27 on: July 13, 2012, 05:39:32 pm »
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Stuck on the Tarmac... With lightning coming...
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ednever

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #28 on: July 13, 2012, 11:55:15 pm »
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On iso now looking for a few 3p games before bed. If anyone's around, feel free to join!

Ed
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ednever

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #29 on: July 14, 2012, 09:45:46 am »
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First tweets are live. Initial structure and which sets on which tables.

(and pictures!)

Ed
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questioneer

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #30 on: July 14, 2012, 03:06:41 pm »
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Hey I don't do twitter- can you send the pics and stuff over to FB or here???
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Ozle

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #31 on: July 14, 2012, 03:15:01 pm »
+1

When you say you dont do twitter, i presume you dont realise you dont need to sign up to twitter to see someones posts.

https://twitter.com/Ednever
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ednever

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #32 on: July 14, 2012, 06:41:37 pm »
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Lots of controversy here at thr final. More later, but summarized in the tweets...
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theory

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #33 on: July 14, 2012, 06:48:25 pm »
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I'm a little confused by what you mean.  Why does it matter if someone didn't pick up a Curse if it's empty?  And what's the deal with outside people interfering?  I feel like we had that discussion before on this forum ...
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Ozle

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #34 on: July 14, 2012, 06:57:23 pm »
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I'm a little confused by what you mean.  Why does it matter if someone didn't pick up a Curse if it's empty?  And what's the deal with outside people interfering?  I feel like we had that discussion before on this forum ...

Possibly its empty now, but it wasnt when he should have picked it up?
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rrenaud

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #35 on: July 14, 2012, 07:20:12 pm »
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I think that there was no curse blocking/returning, so it's clear when curses should run out.  And they don't run out when they should, so it's clear that someone didn't pick up a curse when they should have.

Can you run a check sum to find it out who missed picking up their curse?

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ednever

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #36 on: July 14, 2012, 07:33:30 pm »
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I think that there was no curse blocking/returning, so it's clear when curses should run out.  And they don't run it when they should, so it's clear that someone didn't pick up a curse when they should have.

Can you run a check sum to find it out who missed picking up their curse?

Correct.

We could have, and I started to, but there was a lot of argument and it was decided to restart.

On thr restart Dondon takes it and goes to Worlds!

Ef
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rrenaud

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #37 on: July 14, 2012, 07:43:20 pm »
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Well, I guess they can be glad that it wasn't iso and there was no horrible point counting going on.

(Troll Face)

But hey, at least one of our posters makes it to worlds ;).
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rrenaud

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #38 on: July 14, 2012, 07:45:34 pm »
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Anyone want to work through the math on the checksum?  I am lazy ;)
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Tejayes

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #39 on: July 14, 2012, 07:47:00 pm »
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I had a fun time getting my butt handed to me (I did win a few times, but the rest...), so thanks to ednever and everyone else for being great opponents.

I look forward to seeing more tournaments like this, though I'll probably take a break from competitive play for a while (IED and all).
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dondon151

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #40 on: July 14, 2012, 07:47:55 pm »
+1

I think that there was no curse blocking/returning, so it's clear when curses should run out.  And they don't run out when they should, so it's clear that someone didn't pick up a curse when they should have.

Can you run a check sum to find it out who missed picking up their curse?

We did, and I think we reached a fairly solid conclusion on who missed picking up their Curse.

But by that point, there was the argument that we didn't know how many reshuffles that Curse had missed (thus impacting previous hands), and another player had already dismantled his deck, so there was no other option. I personally wouldn't have minded continuing since this happens not infrequently when I play with my friends IRL, but I was losing that match pretty handily, so meh - can't complain...

I also apologize to ednever and the other players who were playing at the table where I let slip some offhand advice and caused the game to be forfeit. I had noticed that there were 2 piles empty and one of the players replied that there would be trouble emptying out the 3rd pile. Naturally I saw the cheapest card on the table (Watchtower) and jokingly remarked "hey, better pound those Watchtowers..." Then we noticed that there were only 3 Watchtowers left. Oops.



ggs all around to all of the participants; I have to say that a lot of luck was on my side - there was one afternoon match where I opened 5/2 on a Torturer/Chapel kingdom, and in the re-do of the final match, I opened 5/2 with Witch in the kingdom and picked up a second Witch on turn 3. Jay advised us to pick each kingdom randomly for each game, and that led to some rather imbalanced kingdoms. (I'm not sure if he picked the final kingdom by himself, but it was a pretty rotten kingdom; the only alternative strategy present was possibly some combination of Bureaucrat/Woodcutter/Gardens).

Anyway, synopsis (of my matches, at least) to come later.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2012, 08:03:45 pm by dondon151 »
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clb

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #41 on: July 14, 2012, 07:51:47 pm »
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Congrats on your win; good luck at Worlds!
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theory

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #42 on: July 14, 2012, 08:17:47 pm »
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Congrats to both ednever and dondon.  We had two of the four finalists?
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questioneer

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #43 on: July 14, 2012, 08:32:09 pm »
+1

Congrats!  Awesome.  Dondon, good luck at Worlds- go get em!

Ednever, congrats again- thanks for the pics! :)
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ednever

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #44 on: July 14, 2012, 09:17:39 pm »
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Also check out #dominionnats and @rbuehler for more coverage.

Ef
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rrenaud

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #45 on: July 14, 2012, 09:29:51 pm »
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rbuehler beat theory in the WBC finals last year.
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dondon151

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #46 on: July 15, 2012, 12:27:20 am »
+3

Quick-ish summary, because I'm tired.

Tournament format:

Morning was 4 rounds of 3-player, with each player getting a bye (so 3 rounds of play for each player). The end objective was to advance 9 players, but… there were only 10 players who made it, so really, we were all just trying to not place dead last.

Afternoon was 3 rounds of 3-player with the top 9 from the morning, with the player with the best “score” winning the tournament (not VPs). Score was handed out based on position after each game – basically, the player who performed the best overall.

Each table that we played at had an available set of cards to choose from (e.g., Base + Intrigue, Cornucopia + Hinterlands, etc.). Sets were generated randomly using the randomizer cards or using a randomizer app on someone’s phone.

Also, I don’t know everyone’s online username, so I’ll be using their real names here… if they don’t mind. I also apologize if I don’t remember whom I played against in what game; this stuff is hard to keep track of.

Morning rounds:

Because we were only competing to not be last, I’m not sure if all of us took these matches completely seriously… Some of these games I decided to just go with crazy stuff that might or might not have worked out.

Round 1: Pawn, Cellar, Chancellor, Feast, Gardens, Throne Room, Trading Post, Festival, Upgrade, Nobles

I didn’t have a very good impression of this set, because nothing seemed to jump out at all. I guess Pawn and Festival are decent facilitators for a Gardens strategy, but I absolutely hate going for a straight Gardens rush because they are just neither fast nor strong most of the time. There didn’t seem to be a good engine here either, with the only +cards being Nobles. I thought at first that something like Trading Post + BM would be pretty dominant.

But I love pairing Throne Room with +cards, especially when accompanied by light trashing – and who cares if Nobles is expensive? I went for it anyway, grabbing TR at $4, Upgrade/Festival at $5, and Nobles at $6, then got an engine running that generated up to $16 with multiple buys per turn. At that point the Provinces were running dangerously low, but the favorable Nobles split, in addition to the presence of Gardens, allowed me to prolong the game enough to let me roar by with a win. I came out on top with a final score of 45-40-39, with only 2 Provinces, but 6 Nobles and 7 Gardens worth 3 VP each.

Round 2: Trade Route, Bishop, Gardens, Feast, Militia, Thief, Mountebank, Counting House, Witch, King’s Court, Platinum, Colony

This round was brutal. Thankfully no one managed to hit a KC-Mountebank, but we were just cursing the living daylights out of each other. Once the smoke cleared and the Curses were gone, then we had to figure out how to rebuild our decks into a scoring position.

I had already committed beforehand to stocking up on Bishops and trashing away my somewhat-useless Mountebanks for VP, but I had neglected to consider that it slightly undid all of the gunking up that I did in the first place. Oops. One of my opponents and I each grabbed a Counting House, which yielded 1 Colony for each of us. Trade Routes were eventually worth $5 each and allowed us to more easily buy Duchies and Provinces, and Gardens took advantage of our huge, bloated decks.

After all that mess, no one had any idea who was ahead, but I suspected that I did not play this kingdom well. We ended with a score of 57-56-54, with me coming in dead last, but it was a lot closer than I had imagined it to be.

Round 3: Apothecary, Herbalist, Lighthouse, Ambassador, Philosopher’s Stone, Sea Hag, Tactician, Merchant Ship, Wharf, Outpost

My eyes opened wide when I saw Ambassador, Lighthouse, Tactician, and Outpost all in the same set – I love playing double Tactician, I love going for triple Tactician via Outpost, and Ambassador is a brutal complement to those decks. But double Tactician needs +$ and +actions, and there were no +actions, and the +$ cards weren’t cantrips, which would make it hard to get to $8 for double Tactician.

Then I saw Herbalist and Philosopher’s Stone, and I knew right away that Ambassador and Sea Hag were traps in this kingdom. I was hoping that my opponents would pick up these power cards on instinct and not consider that Herbalist + PS counters these attacks extremely effectively.

It seemed that Ed (ednever) had also considered this, and we both opened Potion/Herbalist. Our unfortunate third player, Ted, didn’t really seem to have a coherent strategy, but eventually picked up an Ambassador and a Sea Hag at some point. Upon his first play of Ambassador, he realized that he walked into a trap and that Ed and I benefitted to some extent from any of his attacks.

Ed and I played Herbalist/PS mirrors, with both of us nearly matching each other’s buys and deck sizes. On the last shuffle, Ed was able to pick up Province on both turns, whereas I had to settle for Estate/nothing on a couple of terrible draws, and Ed took this one, 39-32-22.

Afternoon rounds:

Serious business here. I was not particularly pleased with the decisions that I made in the 2nd morning round, but overall I was pleasantly surprised with how I did, considering that I hadn’t played Dominion in a long time.

Round 1: Herbalist, Cellar, Moat, Scrying Pool, Masquerade, Wishing Well, Upgrade, Minion, Trading Post, Apprentice

I had 2 options here: either I could go with the tried and true Masq-BM, or I could try doing something crazy with an SP engine. I immediately ruled out pure Minion strategies in 3 player games because there's never enough of them to go around, but you'd be surprised at how many presumably mid to high level players in these tournaments ignore it completely. There was light trashing in the form of Masq, Upgrade, and Trading Post; Herbalist gave a +buy, and Minion gave +$. I had never played with Alchemy cards before, and maybe I should have been a bit more conservative, but I went ahead with the SP strategy anyway. My opponents went with unfocused strategies involving some amount of Upgrade, Trading Post, and Minion.

I ended up with 6 SPs, trimmed my deck until it made exactly $16, and got 2 consecutive double Province turns, picking up a few more along the way. I nailed this one, coming in 1st at 48-33-27 with 7 Provinces and 2 Duchies.

I spoke to Joe, one of my opponents, after the game, and we both agreed that if he opened Trading Post instead of Minion on his 5/2 opening, that he probably would have had a much better shot at winning with a BM strategy. I don’t think he ever picked up more than 2 Minions throughout the entire game.

After this match, I made the dumb offhand remark about piledriving the Watchtowers in a different match, which caused a match to restart and prolonged the entire tournament by 30+ minutes. Oops.

Round 2: Chapel, Pawn, Wishing Well, Great Hall, Ironworks, Throne Room, Noble Brigand, Torturer, Harem, Border Village

Ed was my opponent again, and I knew that he was a very solid player, which meant that I had to play this match really well.

I opened 5/2 with Torturer/Chapel, and that’s all she wrote. I got to a comfortable Province lead in a kingdom with no +buy, we depleted the Curses and Torturers, and I picked up BV/Duchy to empty out the piles and cruise to a 29-16-2 win. Opening luck much? Yeah, that’s basically it.

Round 3: Duchess, Develop, Steward, Mining Village, Silk Road, Navigator, Noble Brigand, Saboteur, Merchant Ship, Ghost Ship

My FPS got the better of me again and decided that it wanted to try some convoluted Steward/MV/Ghost Ship engine. Meanwhile, I completely missed the Develop/SR synergy, which one of my opponents (Joseph) picked up on immediately. Eventually my engine kicked into gear and I was able to reliably draw $8 and play Ghost Ship every turn, which allowed me to pick up 5 Provinces and essentially prevented my other opponent, Tobin, from getting any. When there were 2 Provinces left, I began buying Duchies with $8 and $10 in an attempt to catch up. Well, that paid off, sort of – I got 4 Duchies, bought my 6th Province, then ended the game by buying my 5th Duchy, which was just enough to put me 3 VP ahead of Tobin. Joseph creamed us both with a very favorable split of the SRs and a metric asston of VP cards, winning 72-51-48.

I was just glad that I did not get 3rd place. With a 2nd place finish, all I needed was for Joe (my afternoon round 1 opponent) to not win at his table. It really looked like Ed was dominating at that table, playing several Saboteurs every turn and dominating the game, and Joe wanted to shake my hand in advance to congratulate me for moving on, but I insisted that he didn’t until the game was over.

I suppose I was right, because Ed ended the game, with all of the players thinking that he won…. And Joe got first with 12 VP to Ed’s 11 VP.

Well, crap.

Playoff

Jay had stated earlier that in the case of a tie after the afternoon games, the top players would engage in a tiebreaker playoff. Joe and I fully anticipated that we would compete in a head-to-head match, but Jay vehemently opposed a 2 player match and instead insisted that we play a 4 player match with the 2 players that tied for 3rd place. Naturally, Joe and I were a little miffed that instead of a true tiebreaker match, this was basically going to be a tossup that was probably going to be largely determined by turn position and the opening draw.

Playoff: Cellar, Chancellor, Woodcutter, Bureaucrat, Throne Room, Moneylender, Gardens, Witch, Mine, Laboratory

I have no idea how Jay determined this set, only that he determined that the set would consist only of Base set cards. This didn’t look like a very interesting set at all. Chancellor and Mine were absolutely terrible, the absence of engine potential was a counterindication to Moneylender, and you’d have to be pretty lucky to hope to match up TR with anything in a deck bogged down with Curses.

We randomly drew our positions, and I got 3rd position, much to my chagrin. Turns out that despite us having tied for 1st in the afternoon, Joe and I wouldn’t even get the benefit of advantageous seating positions (Joe drew 2nd position)! I didn’t have a good plan in mind and grabbed an assortment of sub-optimal stuff, and went for swingy things to help overcome a turn position disadvantage. I did manage to match up a TR to a Witch once, and Joe got even luckier, getting TR-Witch twice with no other support. Joseph, who was in 4th position, got a lucky 5/2 on his opening draw, but he wasn't that far ahead due to our luck with the TR-Witches.

As the game went on, I played a Witch, dealing out the last 3 Curses... and noticed immediately that someone had forgotten to pick up a Curse. We counted the number of Curses in our decks and argued for awhile about whom it should have belonged to by trying to count how many times we each played Witch. I think at some point, we determined that Joe most likely forgot to pick up a Curse, but at that point, Jay had already ruled that there should be a re-match, and Randy (who was in 1st position) had already dismantled his deck. So re-match it was.

This time, I got insanely lucky. I opened 5/2 with Witch/Cellar. Turn 3, I play Witch, draw 5 Coppers, and pick up a 2nd Witch. The other players got a couple more Golds than I did, but the Curse split says it all – I ended up with only 4 of the Curses and got lucky enough to make 3 Provinces, which decided the game in my favor: 32-25-24-19.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2012, 04:44:18 pm by dondon151 »
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Razzishi

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #47 on: July 15, 2012, 01:30:58 am »
0

Not all too surprised at seeing Randy Buehler at the top of the heap for Dominion.
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theory

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #48 on: July 15, 2012, 01:54:17 am »
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Seems like the seating positions made a huge difference.  It's a little amusing how much effort we went to to balance seating order, and in Nationals it's just best-of-1 free-for-all.

So I'm curious: was the final "playoff" going to be whoever did better between you and Joe, or just whoever won the game?  Because if the latter, that seems grossly unfair.
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dondon151

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Re: Dominion US National Championships
« Reply #49 on: July 15, 2012, 09:44:47 am »
+1

Seems like the seating positions made a huge difference.  It's a little amusing how much effort we went to to balance seating order, and in Nationals it's just best-of-1 free-for-all.

Seating order was pretty balanced in the morning and afternoon rounds - each player played a game in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd position in the morning and afternoon. I don't think we had anticipated a playoff match at all, but I honestly would have preferred having several playoff matches as opposed to just having everything decided by one.

So I'm curious: was the final "playoff" going to be whoever did better between you and Joe, or just whoever won the game?  Because if the latter, that seems grossly unfair.

Joe seemed to think that it was the former; Joseph and Randy seemed to think that it was the latter, and I had no clue because Jay didn't really make it clear. I'm pretty sure it was the latter, and I was extremely miffed about that because it meant that my top placement meant nearly nothing. (One of the spectators can correct me if I'm wrong about this.) Jay really hates 2 player, but I honestly could not fathom why he didn't settle for a 2 player playoff - in his e-mail about the tournament format, he very clearly stated that "if there is a tie in the semis or finals, it will be broken, when necessary, by the players playing another game." That seems to indicate to me that it is only the tying players who play the tiebreaking game. Because there just happened to be another 2 players tied for 3rd place, Jay decided that if there were 4 players near the top, then there should be a 4 player game.

Whatever, I'm not going to complain, because I got some insane opening luck in the game that mattered, and it basically just came down to that. The kingdom was rotten, straight Witch-BM was pretty dominant, and I'm pretty sure that the only remotely competitive alternate strategy was some mix of Bureaucrat/Woodcutter/Gardens, but even that is suspect because games end extremely quickly in 4 player and Gardens tends to be weaker there.

(I was also miffed that Ed accidentally handed Joe a win, which forced the playoff in the first place  :P)
« Last Edit: July 15, 2012, 09:52:19 am by dondon151 »
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