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Author Topic: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards  (Read 39732 times)

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O

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #100 on: July 21, 2012, 02:00:24 pm »
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I ranked baron much higher. Not the #3, I don't think (though maybe) one of the 8s, but much higher nonetheless.

Its below freaking Moneylender after all. Moneylender is +2$, trash a copper. Baron is +4$. Baron can miss, and it's unfortunate when it does, but its still quite a high probably of hitting for the next for shuffles. Plus baron gives T3/T4 golds, and T3/T4 golds are king.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #101 on: July 21, 2012, 04:47:59 pm »
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I actually had Baron a spot or two lower.   The ~30 percent chance of drawing Baron with no Estates on Turns 3/4 is just such a kiss of death that I can't rank it highly.  And then there are often just better options.

The thing is, I almost NEVER open with baron (same for salvager), because of the chance of drawing baron with no estates. However, this card is so strong in drawing engines (Stables, Hunting party, Lab, nobles, village+cards, ...)

Baron has slowly become a card that I usually veto if I can, because much of the time you feel compelled to open with it, and if it works out for your opponent but not you, that's so strong. And like you say, it's very good in drawing engines.

I don't feel compelled to open Baron most of the time.  If I get 5/2 chances are there's a 5 I'd rather have; Baron is more-or-less obsoleted by decent trashing or decent attacks (you're not getting Gold if your Baron-Estate-Copper-Copper-Copper hand gets hit with Militia); oftentimes you have to open Potion instead... there are a whole host of reasons to not open Baron beyond just a fear of whiffing.

And connecting after Turns 3/4 gets harder and harder unless you're setting up an engine.  Baron can admittedly be nice in some engines- but I do think it gets obsoleted pretty hard by most (non-Copper) trashing and attacks, and those things are not exactly rare.
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ehunt

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #102 on: July 21, 2012, 05:05:56 pm »
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trader is way underrated on the list

farming village a little underrated, i think people don't notice how often the ability helps them because of the isotropic interface, and sifting is not small.

i didn't read what anyone else said, hope i'm not over-repeating
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ehunt

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #103 on: July 21, 2012, 05:08:51 pm »
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moneylender > spice merchant for sure. tends to do better in more boring decks, though

baron is one of my least favorite cards cause baron copper copper copper copper, and that makes it hard to rank.
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #104 on: July 21, 2012, 05:11:24 pm »
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farming village a little underrated, i think people don't notice how often the ability helps them because of the isotropic interface, and sifting is not small.
It's definitely good against certain attacks, and a little late game when you have victory cards in your deck, but if you can trash your estates, then for most of the game it's not doing anything. I think Mining, Farming, and Walled are all pretty close and belong right around where farming is in the low-mid 20s.
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ehunt

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #105 on: July 21, 2012, 05:15:10 pm »
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Hmm, I think mining is for sure a cut above the rest (what O said about turn 3 golds and baron, plus in the late game with a good engine). I always underestimate worker's village, though. I think mining > farming > worker's > walled, but would believe a community consensus swapping the inside two.

Walled village has its places, of course, e.g. walled village + witch + witch + money is probably better than any of the other villages (actually, maybe not farming). Although maybe witch + witch + money is better than any of them.
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rinkworks

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #106 on: July 21, 2012, 07:49:50 pm »
+2

Count me among those who think Worker's is the best $4 Village.  I was surprised at chwhite's exhaustive and largely flawless Village article ranking it around the middle and intrigued that he's since re-evaluated.  Usually when chwhite weighs in, it's me that comes around.

Here's the thing:  if you have Villages at all, you're building an engine, and if you're building an engine, you want +Buy.  Worker's Village gives you +Buy in the most seamless possible way.  You get it for free when you buy a card you would have bought anyway to make that engine work.  How awesome is that?  It's better than a one-shot dose of not-really-that-much cash when you trash an engine component you probably need, and it's better than a Village that skips green cards in theory but somehow never finds them to skip when you actually use them.  I don't know why this isn't the prevailing opinion.  Well, maybe it is now, actually, since Worker's has obviously been ranked first this time, but there is clearly still a lot of dissent.

+Buy is the most situational of bonuses, because so often it goes unused.  It's on a lot of cards where it's not that important, because the types of decks you use it in, you don't necessarily need it.  But if you're using a Village at all, you probably do want it, and if you had to get it (almost) any other way, you'd have to burn an extra turn to pick up that engine component separately.

But wait!  There's more!  Say you're running a deck that needs +Buy but isn't a Village-based engine.  Why, then Worker's Village may still be the ideal source of +Buy due to way that, as a cantrip, it slips so seamlessly into most decks.  Only a couple other cards can do that, and they're harder and a lot harder to obtain, respectively:  Market at $5 and Grand Market at $6 with a special restriction.

When you're liable to pick up a Village without even needing the Village effect itself, well, that says something.
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Robz888

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #107 on: July 21, 2012, 08:07:42 pm »
0

I absolutely agree that Worker's Village is the best of the $4 villages, and I am not even an engine guy. I used to have this great love for Farmer's but now I'd say it's weaker than Mining, and certainly weaker than Worker's. (Walled is of course distantly behind all 3.)

The big point in its favor is that even when you don't need sources of +action, WV is a seamless +buy that doesn't mess up your deck.
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ehunt

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #108 on: July 21, 2012, 08:12:03 pm »
0

I'm an unbeliever in the engine/non-engine dichotomy in terms of looking at boards - I think it is useful for a while, but it ultimately causes when-your-only-tool-is-a-hammer type problems.

I agree that in the games where you pare your deck down to zero and play 14 conspirators in a row, you want a worker's village. But there are a lot of boards where you maybe don't have an "engine" in that strict of a sense, and you need a village; on those, farming is a little better and mining is miles ahead. I also disagree that a trashed mining village is a small bonus - it's an activated conspirator! Often the extra actions are the "meh" part of that card, not the two dollars.
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Morgrim7

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #109 on: July 21, 2012, 08:15:48 pm »
0

Was really surprised with Spice Merchant being so low. It is almost always better than Moneylender.

Cutpurse going up was a pleasant surprise. That card is underrated. People keep thinking about how horrible it is in the later game, when its true power is in the opening.

Sort of surprised Island went down so many ranks, it isn't a bad opener,its a  a good buy near the end of the game, and a good way to get rid of some green.

I'm on the "WV is the best $4 Village" side. I used to like Farming Village, but after all the times using it and realizing its weakness, I like WV more.

So many cards going down ranks...
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ehunt

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #110 on: July 21, 2012, 08:16:55 pm »
0

maybe i'd put it this way. ranking them as "villages qua villages" I would say worker's > mining > farming > walled. as "villages qua cards" though, it's the order I said before; possibly worker's is still better than farming. the question is in what percentage of a game that you want a village are you building a super-compact engine that needs streamless +buy every turn - I think it's lower than y'all are putting it at.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #111 on: July 21, 2012, 09:42:40 pm »
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maybe i'd put it this way. ranking them as "villages qua villages" I would say worker's > mining > farming > walled. as "villages qua cards" though, it's the order I said before; possibly worker's is still better than farming. the question is in what percentage of a game that you want a village are you building a super-compact engine that needs streamless +buy every turn - I think it's lower than y'all are putting it at.

I would say that as "villages qua villages", Farming is definitely above Mining.  As long as it's still in your deck and is helping you get +Action, Mining is just a vanilla Village.  I would have an easier time believing that Mining beats Farming as a card but not as a Village, though I still think Farming is a better card overall, because I am more and more convinced as time goes on that buying a Mining Village to trash it early is just a bad idea 95 percent of the time.

When you're liable to pick up a Village without even needing the Village effect itself, well, that says something.

Yeah, I don't know why I was bad-mouthing Worker's Village as a source of +Buy, it's a pretty great source if you need either the +Action or you're running a cantrip engine. 

Actually, though, most Villages have situations where you're willing to buy it without needing the +2 Actions: vanilla Village and Walled are the only true exceptions (and even then I can imagine Vineyard decks picking them up).  But WV is more likely than most.  The three villages which give +Coin- Festival, Fishing, and Bazaar- are all reasonable possibilities (say in a Minion or Scrying Pool deck), as are the +Buy Villages (Festival, Worker's, and Hamlet).  And then there's getting a single Shanty Town in a terminal-less deck for the +Card.  Mining, Farming, and Native are pretty rare, admittedly, though again this is because I don't really believe in buying Mining Village to use as a one-shot.

I think Festival is actually the Village I am most likely to pick up without using the second Action, in situations where I don't really have terminals but want multiple +Buys and/or virtual +Coin: Minion, Scrying Pool, hybrid Gardens, stuff like that.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2012, 09:43:44 pm by chwhite »
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ehunt

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #112 on: July 21, 2012, 09:49:35 pm »
0

yeah, you're right of course that farming > mining as vqv
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rinkworks

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #113 on: July 22, 2012, 09:39:48 am »
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When you're liable to pick up a Village without even needing the Village effect itself, well, that says something.

Yeah, I don't know why I was bad-mouthing Worker's Village as a source of +Buy, it's a pretty great source if you need either the +Action or you're running a cantrip engine. 

Actually, though, most Villages have situations where you're willing to buy it without needing the +2 Actions: vanilla Village and Walled are the only true exceptions (and even then I can imagine Vineyard decks picking them up).  But WV is more likely than most.  The three villages which give +Coin- Festival, Fishing, and Bazaar- are all reasonable possibilities (say in a Minion or Scrying Pool deck), as are the +Buy Villages (Festival, Worker's, and Hamlet).  And then there's getting a single Shanty Town in a terminal-less deck for the +Card.  Mining, Farming, and Native are pretty rare, admittedly, though again this is because I don't really believe in buying Mining Village to use as a one-shot.

I wasn't clear, but in that case I was only really talking about cards with "Village" in the actual name, which (with exceptions both ways) tend to be the ones without the common non-Village uses.  But you make a good point, that Worker's isn't the only one.  Even the rare ones have occasional uses, like Farming Village vs. Rabble.  But I tend to think Worker's Village is the only non-coin one that's fairly common.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #114 on: July 22, 2012, 11:21:51 am »
0

When you're liable to pick up a Village without even needing the Village effect itself, well, that says something.

Yeah, I don't know why I was bad-mouthing Worker's Village as a source of +Buy, it's a pretty great source if you need either the +Action or you're running a cantrip engine. 

Actually, though, most Villages have situations where you're willing to buy it without needing the +2 Actions: vanilla Village and Walled are the only true exceptions (and even then I can imagine Vineyard decks picking them up).  But WV is more likely than most.  The three villages which give +Coin- Festival, Fishing, and Bazaar- are all reasonable possibilities (say in a Minion or Scrying Pool deck), as are the +Buy Villages (Festival, Worker's, and Hamlet).  And then there's getting a single Shanty Town in a terminal-less deck for the +Card.  Mining, Farming, and Native are pretty rare, admittedly, though again this is because I don't really believe in buying Mining Village to use as a one-shot.

I wasn't clear, but in that case I was only really talking about cards with "Village" in the actual name, which (with exceptions both ways) tend to be the ones without the common non-Village uses.  But you make a good point, that Worker's isn't the only one.  Even the rare ones have occasional uses, like Farming Village vs. Rabble.  But I tend to think Worker's Village is the only non-coin one that's fairly common.

Ah, yeah, that's fair.
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cayvie

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #115 on: July 22, 2012, 03:13:49 pm »
+1


But wait!  There's more!  Say you're running a deck that needs +Buy but isn't a Village-based engine.  Why, then Worker's Village may still be the ideal source of +Buy due to way that, as a cantrip, it slips so seamlessly into most decks.  Only a couple other cards can do that, and they're harder and a lot harder to obtain, respectively:  Market at $5 and Grand Market at $6 with a special restriction.

(hamlet)
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Robz888

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #116 on: July 22, 2012, 03:17:58 pm »
0

Pawn!
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #117 on: July 22, 2012, 03:53:55 pm »
0

But wait!  There's more!  Say you're running a deck that needs +Buy but isn't a Village-based engine.  Why, then Worker's Village may still be the ideal source of +Buy due to way that, as a cantrip, it slips so seamlessly into most decks.  Only a couple other cards can do that, and they're harder and a lot harder to obtain, respectively:  Market at $5 and Grand Market at $6 with a special restriction.
(hamlet)
Pawn!
Hand size decreasing! (not cantrips)
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 2/3 posted
« Reply #118 on: July 23, 2012, 06:51:10 am »
0

The Best $4 Cards - Part 3/3
Link to the win rates on Councilroom
Link 2 to the win rates on Councilroom

#16 ▲7 Worker's Village (Prosperity) Weighted Average: 17.45 ▲3.78 / Median: 18 ▲1.5 / Mode: 17 ▲7 / Standard Deviation: 6.1 ▲0.5
Highest Rank(s): #3 (2x), #5 (1x) / Lowest Rank(s): #27 (1x), #29 (1x), #30 (1x)

A big jump of 7 ranks and nearly 4 points here. With Worker's Village we have a card with low deviation for a middle-ranked card. It's the first card which was never below #30. In the unweighted ranking it would be even one rank higher on #15.

If you build an engine, you need villages, draw, money and buys. Fishing Village is good because it is reliable and gives you money. Worker's Village gives you the additional buy - you have it included in your village so you don't need a separate card for that. It's also great picking up additional Peddlers in masses and with Goons where you need as many buys as you can get. But when you just need a simple village and don't plan to get more than $8 or $11 respectively, other villages for $4 are probably better. So this is the best village this time, last time it was only the third best. Worker's Village / Masquerade is the #89 best opening.
#15 ▲1 Smithy (Base) Weighted Average: 16.77 ▼0.14 / Median: 16 ▲0.5 / Mode: 12 ▲10 / Standard Deviation: 6.5 ▲0.1
Highest Rank(s): #4 (1x), #7 (1x), #8 (1x) / Lowest Rank(s): #30 (1x), #31 (1x), #40 (1x)

Smithy was 8 times in the Top 10 and has very similar stats than last time. Interesting is the big change in mode and the big outlier on #40. In the unweighted ranking it would be even two ranks higher on #13.

This is maybe the simplest card when you're learning Dominion. It has so few text, but is yet very powerful. It introduced us to the card drawing mechanism, the key card for Big Money and engines. In the base set Double-Smithy was still good, but the value dropped down. BM-Smithy is still the way to go on many boards, and if you need a card drawer for a good working engine, Smithy is still a good pick.
#14 ▲1 Gardens (Base) Weighted Average: 16.63 ▼0.8 / Median: 16 ▲0.5 / Mode: 7 ▲11 / Standard Deviation: 7.7 ▲1.5
Highest Rank(s): #3 (2x), #4 (1x) / Lowest Rank(s): #30 (1x), #32 (2x)

Alternative victory cards are hard to rank, but Gardens has a much lower deviation this time. It has some really high ranks, it was 18 times in the Top 10 (6 times on #7). Still it has a lot of votes in the Twenties and even three times on #30 or below. It managed to beat Smithy by 0.14 points.

Gardens is another card from the base set, introduced us to alternative victory cards. The Gardens rush is still a very good strategy on many boards and in Hinterlands there are more supporting cards for it, so it gained a little more power recently. Gardens is with non-trashing boards easily worth a Duchy and can be worth even more with good supporters like Workshop or Ironworks. It gets even better in cursing games where 3-piling gets faster and is harder to get to $8.
#13 ▲15 Silk Road (Hinterlands) Weighted Average: 16.18 ▲8.71 / Median: 16 ▲6.5 / Mode: 8 ▲9 / Standard Deviation: 9.3 ▲0.6
Highest Rank(s): #3 (1x), #5 (2x) / Lowest Rank(s): #33 (2x), #35 (1x), #38 (1x)

Silk Road is better than Gardens now. It's the Hinterlands card with the highest jump, 15 ranks and nearly 9 points. How we underestimated it! But there are still many players who rated it very low, so it has still a very high deviation, the highest deviation of all $4 cards. In the unweighted ranking it would be on #16, so especially newer players ranked it a lot lower.

Silk Road plays similarly to Gardens. You have to rush them, with support of Workshop/Ironworks and/or additional buys for double Estates in the end game. You can pick Gardens up in the late game without rushing them and they are mostly worth 3VP like a Duchy. That's mostly not the case with Silk Road, you need a special strategy for them. But Silk Road is great with a board with dual-type victory cards like Island, Nobles or Harem.
#12 =0 Envoy (Promo) Weighted Average: 15.68 ▼1.24 / Median: 16 ▼4.5 / Mode: 18 ▼12 / Standard Deviation: 6.4 ▲4.2
Highest Rank(s): #3 (1x), #4 (1x), #5 (1x) / Lowest Rank(s): #28 (1x), #31 (1x), #32 (1x)

Much more consensus here now, but still it's on the same rank even though it lost more than one point. It was 13 times in the Top 10.

Envoy is maybe THE Big Money card. In a deck full of silver and an Envoy in hand, you're almost guaranteed a Province. In a Envoy Big Money deck you don't necessarily need Gold, as it will get discarded from your opponent either way. Smithy is #15 and draws 3 cards, of course this is stronger in BM games for drawing 4 cards. In engine games this is usually worse, as your opponent will discard your key card. But if you have a deck with a density of high quality, Envoy can be a very good addition too as you may draw the discarded card later again if you can draw your whole deck.
#11 ▲2 Bridge (Intrigue) Weighted Average: 15.28 ▼0.02 / Median: 14 ▼1 / Mode: 10 ▲7 / Standard Deviation: 6.7 ▲0.9
Highest Rank(s): #2 (2x), #3 (1x) / Lowest Rank(s): #27 (3x), #28 (1x), #30 (1x)

Bridge has nearly the same points as last time, but still went up 2 ranks. It has a little more consensus, but still a lot of low ranks for such a high ranked card.

Bridge is a very nice card. If you buy only one card, it's not more than a terminal Silver. If you use both buys, it's a terminal Gold, but still not so exciting. But its power rises the more you can play in one turn. With 2 Bridges and you use all 3 buys, they are worth $8, so $4 per Bridge. Its value increases quadratically. With n Bridges you have nē+2n coins if you use every buy. So if you manage to play 7 Bridges and an additional copper, you can buy all 8 Provinces in one turn. The problem is still how to do that. You need enough actions and/or enough drawing power. You definitely need supporters. With a 5-card hand of 2 King's Courts and 3 Bridges, you can accomplish this easily. But also other cards like Tactician and Native Village are great supporters. If there aren't good supporters for 3-piling or mega-turning, Bridge is a trap card for being a terminal Gold in best case.
#10 ▼3 Caravan (Seaside) Weighted Average: 13.14 ▼2.85 / Median: 12 ▼3 / Mode: 9 =0 / Standard Deviation: 6.4 ▼0.9
Highest Rank(s): #1 (2x), #3 (2x) / Lowest Rank(s): #25 (1x), #26 (2x)

We're making a jump of over 2 points and are now in the Top 10. Caravan lost 3 ranks, nearly 3 points and a lot of supporters, what the deviation shows us. It was 8 times on #9 and it is the second card with a first rank (even twice). It would be one rank higher in the unweighted ranking.

Caravan is the worse Laboratory, because it has a delayed benefit and can miss the reshuffle and therefore you cannot play it that often. But still a bigger hand size from a nonterminal card is great. Only Big Money decks don't necessarily profit from it, so almost all decks can need a Caravan. Getting all Caravans is still not key to win the game, but if you get them quick (e.g. from Talisman or Ironworks), this can really make a huge difference. So this is almost a must-buy for all good engines. Caravan / Ambassador is the #7 =0 best opening and Caravan / Masquerade on #38 ▲28.
#9 ▲2 Salvager (Seaside) Weighted Average: 12.70 ▲1.06 / Median: 12 =0 / Mode: 12 ▼7 / Standard Deviation: 6.4 ▲3.0
Highest Rank(s): #1 (1x), #3 (1x), #6 (4x) / Lowest Rank(s): #27 (1x), #29 (1x), #32 (1x)

Salvager is now 2 ranks higher, so it seems that the people ranking it low last time, changed their mind as you can see by the big change in the deviation. It's another card with a first rank and would be one rank lower in the unweighted ranking.

Salvager is one of the best trash-for-benefit cards. It's not that a great starter, but still a good card to pick up early. Later in the game you generally want to trash your best card, so you can trash a Gold for an easy Province, maybe even for a double Province. Then you have a significant lead and can salvage your Province for another one, accelerating the game, so that your opponent can't come back. So Salvager is one of the first cards in this list, that is useful on most boards.
#8 =0 Militia (Base) Weighted Average: 11.59 ▼0.86 / Median: 10 =0 / Mode: 6 ▲4 / Standard Deviation: 6.5 ▼0.7
Highest Rank(s): #1 (1x), #2 (1x), #4 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #27 (1x), #30 (2x)

A few players ranked Militia lower now, what you can see in the higher deviation and a drop of nearly one point. But it's still on the same rank and it's the next card with a first rank. It was voted 10 times on #6.

Militia is another card from the base set and it's the best. Discarding attacks are really annoying and can really hurt some decks. It's great against decks with trashers as the opponent mostly has to choose between buying a good card and discarding the trasher or trash 1-2 cards and buy nothing. Militia is also a good opener as it is also a terminal silver and stops your opponent getting to $5 or $6 early. And if you can play it each turn, this is great. So Militia / Chapel is the #67 ▼11 best opening. You can combo this with Council Room / Governor and your opponent doesn't get the benefit of the additional card, or play Militia and Masquerade afterwards what could really hurt. But there situations when Militia isn't that strong, especially if there are cursers on the board, or if there are effective counters like Watchtower, Horse Traders, Library, Jack of All Trades or Menagerie on the board.
#7 ▼1 Bishop (Prosperity) Weighted Average: 8.88 ▲1.33 / Median: 8 ▲2 / Mode: 5 ▲3 / Standard Deviation: 6.1 ▼0.8
Highest Rank(s): #1 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #23 (1x), #33 (1x), #35 (1x)

Another big jump of 2.7 points. Bishop is over 1 point better, but still lost a rank. It was 3 times on the first spot, but has 2 big outliers in the low ranks. It was voted 9 times on #5. In the unweighted ranking it would be one rank higher on #6.

Bishop is a good opener too, as it can trash your cards for the benefit of early VPs. So a trashed Estate nets you already 1 point more without having it in your deck. You can also buy Duchies and trash them for the same VP or Provinces for one point less, but they aren't in your deck anymore which is great. In other scenarios you can trash a Gold late for additional 4VP. There is also a strategy called "Golden Deck" where you trash down to 4 cards (Bishop and 3 Treasures which give at least $7), buy a Province and trash it in the next turn, buying the next province, etc. what gives you 5 VP per turn guaranteed. But take into account the benefit your opponent gets. Often it makes more sense to skip Bishop if your opponent opened Bishop. Then you can trash for free and build a better engine than your opponent. As said above, discarding attacks like Militia really hurt Bishop too. Bishop / Chapel is on #128 in the best openings list.
#6 ▲4 Monument (Prosperity) Weighted Average: 8.47 ▲4.53 / Median: 7 ▲5.5 / Mode: 7 ▲5 / Standard Deviation: 5.1 ▲2.6
Highest Rank(s): #2 (4x) / Lowest Rank(s): #20 (2x), #24 (2x)

Monument is another winner of this ranking. It went up 4 ranks and over 4 points. Also it has a very low deviation, so the good rank is deserved. It's the last card with no first rank, but it was second 4 times and has very few outliers in the low ranks. It was voted 15 times outside the Top 10 and was voted 12 times on #7. In the unweighted ranking it would be one rank lower on #7.

You want to pick up Monument early in the game, because the more you play it, the more it's worth it. It's good in quick games without good additional buys, where it can help you to force your opponent to a 5/3 Province split to win the game. And it's good in decks where you can guarantee to play your Monument regularly. Monument / Chapel is the #38 ▼17 best opening. So one Monument is a great addition to a Hunting Party deck. Monument is also the only infinite VP generating card in the game. With a 5 card hand of 2 King's Courts and 3 Monument you are guaranteed 9 VP per turn. But as it is terminal and when there are very good attacks on the board, then you have to ignore it.
#5 =0 Young Witch (Cornucopia) Weighted Average: 5.76 ▲3.42 / Median: 5 =0 / Mode: 5 =0 / Standard Deviation: 5.6 ▲4.5
Highest Rank(s): #1 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #22 (1x), #27 (1x), #29 (1x)

We're making the next big jump of 2.7 points and reaching the Top 5. Last year's Top 5 are this year's Top 5 and Young Witch is still on #5. But it managed to make a huge gap to all other cards with the big increase of over 3 points. It was one of the cards with the highest deviation the last time, but the consensus is much higher this time. It was 12 times on #5 and was only voted 10 times outside the Top 10.

Young Witch is a curser which generally is very strong and only costs $4, so this is huge! But you are guaranteed that there's a Moat-like bane card in the setup. If you would have bought this card either way, YW is mostly not worth it and skippable, especially if the bane is Lighthouse (it defends now in hand and in play) or Scheme (just return it again and again). In all other cases YW is very strong as a curser and has still the draw-and-discard filter advantage. This leads to one of the most-fun synergies: Young Witch and Tunnel. Giving out curses and getting Gold at the same time is great. Young Witch / Tunnel is #32 ▼14 on the opening list.
#4 =0 Remake (Cornucopia) Weighted Average: 5.26 ▲2.56 / Median: 4 ▲2 / Mode: 4 ▼2 / Standard Deviation: 6.0 ▲3.4
Highest Rank(s): #1 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #27 (1x), #28 (1x), #33 (1x)

Another one from Cornucopia with a similar change to last time than Young Witch: same rank, but big increase in points and consensus. It was only voted 8 times outside the Top 10, and only 3 times outside the Top 15, 3 big outliers.

If you compare Remake to Chapel, it can only trash 2 cards at a time but at the same time let you get 3 Silvers in your deck. And if there are good $2 cards on the board, you can buy a good card for the last two Copper in your hand too. Remake is maybe after Chapel the fastest opening trasher in the game. You can get high quality decks really fast. Later it gets nearly as useless as Chapel, but at that time this doesn't bother you too much. Remake / Menagerie is the best opening on #149.
#3 =0 Tournament (Cornucopia) Weighted Average: 4.86 ▲1.62 / Median: 4 ▲0.5 / Mode: 4 =0 / Standard Deviation: 5.2 ▲0.6
Highest Rank(s): #1 (5x) / Lowest Rank(s): #16 (1x), #26 (1x), #31 (1x)

The third one from Cornucopia in a row. And even the third card managed to get a much better ranking and a little bit better deviation. It was only voted 7 times outside the Top 10 with 2 big outliers.

Many hate Treasure Map for being so luck-based. Tournament is also very luck-based as you have to pair a Province and a Tournament. If you manage to do that you get one of 5 prices that are so strong that Donald X. didn't want to realize these ideas as "normal" cards. So, Tournament is in fact a very good card. I will not go in detail into the prizes, but how do you manage to get a Tournament and Province in hand? It's the same as with Treasure Map. Either trash down to few cards (e.g. Chapel), get a big hand size (e.g. Tactician), or cycle through your deck with sifters (e.g. Warehouse). Also there is the possibility to spam Tournaments which are at least nonterminal and good cards for themselves - at least until your opponent gets Provinces. It's not surprising that Tournament has 3 spots in the Top 10 openings with Ambassador (#2 ▲1), Chapel (#6 ▼1) and Masquerade (#10 ▼2)
#2 ▼1 Jack of all Trades (Hinterlands) Weighted Average: 4.15 ▼1.53 / Median: 3 ▼1.5 / Mode: 2 ▼1 / Standard Deviation: 3.8 ▼0.8
Highest Rank(s): #1 (13x) / Lowest Rank(s): #15 (2x), #16 (1x)

Jack of All Trades isn't the best $4 card anymore. It lost one and a half points and a little bit of consensus. Still 13 players voted it on #1, 17 players on #2 and it was only voted 6 times outside the Top 10.

Nobody saw that coming when Hinterlands came out. JoaT seems so weak, but it isn't. It seems he does nothing good, he's slowing in trashing, draws few cards and let you get a Silver and has a Spy effect. But it is so strong because it's a very good counter against nearly all attacks. Just buy 2 JoaT and you can skip the cursing attack while you're going for Big Money. Yes, it's boring, but effective. It's weaker in Colony games because of the Silver and there are still situations where a thin deck with an obvious engine or a rush is stronger, but if you feel unsure, JoaT is always a good buy, if you stick to it. It combos bad with nearly all other cards. The opening list proves that. Only Fishing Village and Chapel are better openings paired with JoaT than just Silver. The hype - after the simulators showed its strength - is gone now and it's not a must-buy in every game, but it is still the second best $4 card.
#1 ▲1 Sea Hag (Seaside) Weighted Average: 2.45 ▲1.32 / Median: 1 ▲1 / Mode: 1 ▲1 / Standard Deviation: 3.6 ▲3.7
Highest Rank(s): #1 (33x) / Lowest Rank(s): #12 (2x), #14 (1x), #21 (1x)

We have a new #1. It went up over 1 point and has a lead over JaoT of 1.7 points. It also gained more agreement with over the half players ranking it first and only 5 players ranking it outside the Top 10.

Sea Hag is the next $4 curser. It has a big first-player advantage as you may discard your opponents Sea Hag in turn 3 and because the curse goes on top of the deck, this hurts your opponent even more than all other cursers in the game. At least if he hasn't any good counter, like trashing from top of the deck, like Lookout does. Sea Hag / Lookout is also the #49 ▼20 best opening (and many other good SH openings between #50 and #100 still to come). The biggest problem of Sea Hag is: it hurts your oppenent more, but it doesn't give you any benefit (like most of the other attacks do). So every Sea Hag is later a dead Sea Hag if the Curse pile is empty (and is basically a Curse for itself too). And don't forget to build up your economy as Sea Hag doesn't help you now to accomplish this. That may be the reason that Sea Hag / Fool's Gold is the best Sea Hag opening because you get a lot of $2-$3 hands for more Fool's Gold and with at least 2 Fool's Gold it's even better as Silver.

To the $5 cards
« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 03:47:40 pm by Qvist »
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brokoli

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 3/3 posted
« Reply #119 on: July 23, 2012, 06:59:44 am »
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Okay, the list is better now. Especially for silk road which is really well placed.
I think Jack, Smithy and Envoy are overrated. Okay, I'm not a Big Money player but still... I think I ranked tournament above Jack, and a lot of cards above smithy and envoy.
Bishop is too low. It is really a very good card, I would rank it above Young witch at least (even if I love Young witch).
Oh, and Salvager is really too high. It's not that good people. Okay, it can accelerate the game very well, but same with remodel. And it's not a very good opener...
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Morgrim7

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 3/3 posted
« Reply #120 on: July 23, 2012, 07:08:11 am »
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Underrated: Bishop,
Overrated: Salvager, Caravan, JoaT, mayba Militia a tiny bit.
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nomnomnom

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 3/3 posted
« Reply #121 on: July 23, 2012, 07:43:06 am »
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I like Salvager where it is. It is actually a decent opener and just so useful in the endgame.

The ratings of Smithy and Envoy feel a bit high but the cards in the middle are so hard to rank...

Also I don't think Bishop is underrated. I mean, it definately doesn't belong in the top 5 and while Bishop more often is dominating than Monument is, Bishop can also be a bad choice which loses the game for you. Monument is just generally pretty helpful.
It is just a matter of how you want to rate the cards.

Remake should be a bit higher imo. Maybe not 2nd place but it should be ahead of Tournament.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 3/3 posted
« Reply #122 on: July 23, 2012, 09:02:41 am »
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Well...

The good news is that the top 10 are the same as my top 10, and the top four are also the same as my top 4.  Those groups seemed pretty obvious to me, so I'm glad people agreed.

The bad news, of course, is the order within these groups, as well as the massive overrating of Smithy and Envoy, which as I mentioned in the last group, are not actually that great BM strategies. I mean, okay they're fast in a vacuum, but both of them are just so, so fragile in the face of any attacking, even weak attacks.  I mean, Oracle beats these cards, that should tell you all you need to know.  Neither of those cards deserve to be in the top 16 at all.

Bridge and Worker's Village are well-ranked.  Bridge actually has pretty bad win rates, but it's strong enough in experienced hands that I'm willing to chalk that up to lower-level players misplaying the card.  Everyone likes Bridge, but only players who know how to make engines and mega-turns and alt-VP decks actually get full value out of it.  I had Gardens and Silk Road lower but I'm not too too upset they're up here.  A lot of my difference with the overall ranking is that I don't think they add much value at all when you buy them as ersatz Duchies, so I'm not inclined to fight it much.  I would fight ranking them any higher, though.

The six cards in the Caravan to Young Witch stretch are all pretty close in value, so it's hard for me to get upset about the fact that I had most of them in slightly different positions.  I do think that Young Witch is a tad overrated in this list; it is just skippable way too often even though it's a curse-giver.  Excepting the unjust interlopers Smithy and Envoy, it's the card in this list I buy least often.  I had Bishop at #5, but I'm aware that's personal bias as it's a card I love and play particularly well.

As for the top 4, blech.  They're the right four, but in almost exactly the wrong order.  Tournament > Remake > JoaT > Sea Hag.  And except for JoaT and Hag, it's not particularly close.  Tournament is just so game-changing on most boards, and is a decent $4 even when it's not dominant.  Basically only rush strategies don't want Tournament.  Remake is quite probably the best card at improving your deck's value in the early game, to the point where I will usually open Remake/Silver over Chapel/Silver.  That's real ultimate power.  (Of course, if there's another $4 I want, or I got the 5/2 split, that's a reason to go Chapel instead).  Remake is just as good an engine helper as JoaT is a BM helper, and there's an engine to be made more often than not, so Remake > JoaT.  As for JoaT versus Hag, well both change the game but I can't ignore that the head-to-head gives JoaT an advantage.  Eh, I guess I could sorta buy Hag over JoaT.  But not over Tournament and Remake: those two are the top two without question.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2012, 09:22:53 am by chwhite »
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Powerman

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 3/3 posted
« Reply #123 on: July 23, 2012, 09:10:05 am »
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JoaT dropped to #2?  But it DoubleJoaT dominates Sea Hag...
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Tables

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $4 cards - Part 3/3 posted
« Reply #124 on: July 23, 2012, 09:11:26 am »
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The only card here I had considerably different was Monument. The extra VP is nice in BM games, but in an engine, it's a terminal silver with no benefit until scoring. Yes, it's an amazing benefit, but the lack of extra benefit means it's generally best to avoid until your engine is actually running, which means you only have 9 other cards to look at to get your engine built with. Hm, actually, that's still pretty good. Maybe I have been underrating Monument.

I put Jack above Sea Hag, and I stick to that. Jack is just that good in money games, and so easy to build upon. Sea Hag is very close, it's perhaps more useful just a tad more often when neither are on the board, but when Sea Hag and Jack are both on the board, Jack is just so much better it's crazy - and given one  is on the board, the chance of the other being there is 9/156 (give or take), about 5.8%. That's a frequent enough case for it to swing the rating, in my opinion.

Compared to my $3 ratings, which are mostly within 2 either way, these are really all over the place. Lots of cards up or down by 4-5 places or so and a few up to 9 places different. Still, the middle 4's are just so hard to rate.
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...spin-offs are still better for all of the previously cited reasons.
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