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Author Topic: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards  (Read 58979 times)

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jonts26

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #175 on: August 05, 2012, 05:07:07 pm »
0

Highway is too high, but I'll defend merchant ship. It's really good in Duke games!

:P

I do sort of see that, actually.  But it can't be that good with Dukes because it conflicts at the $5 price point, no?

No, it's probably mid level duke support. But some of the other really good duke support is also at $5. Haggler and Cache off the top of my head.
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DWetzel

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #176 on: August 05, 2012, 05:24:55 pm »
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I had duke around 30, which may be a little low. But if your going to take the game changing argument then City, Jester, and Highway can be game changing. As is a turn 1/2 trading post. And festival, bazaar, and rabble all are parts of a good engine. Rabbles attack can particularly hurt dukes.

On a higher percentage of boards than Duke doesn't matter, City is simply an overpriced Village.  Highway is great with +Buys or Ironworks or something, but often it's "congratulations, it's basically a Silver" and is completely ignorable.  Jester is a fine enough card, but you don't see entire strategy articles written about "how to build a Jester deck", and nobody ever thinks "uhoh, Jester's on the board, I'd better change my strategy completely to accomodate its existence".
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dondon151

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #177 on: August 05, 2012, 07:00:26 pm »
+1

Jester is really strong when it can be played repeatedly; it's one of the cards that can effectively lock down an opponent in the endgame.

EDIT: I made this post on my phone, so I couldn't elaborate much further. Of course a lot of cards are "really strong when it can be played repeatedly," but Jester is moderately strong throughout the entire game. Early on, if you hit something good, you both get a free copy of it and you deny your opponent a play of that card for the current shuffle; later on (in the absence of other Curse givers) it junks a green deck, and keeps on junking even if it hits Copper.

It's a moderately ranked $5 card, and I think that's a fair assessment.

In other news: I think some users are confusing "game-changing" with actually being good. Duke warps the game a little bit, but I don't think it's as particularly strong as some state (especially without good enablers). We like to make comparisons to standard Province rushes and say that it's so easy to get 11 cards at $5 to outscore Provinces. But, like, that's not actually so easy. Very rarely, if ever, do you build up your deck for 7 turns or so and then hit $5 for 11 straight turns, nor do you even hit $5 for a good majority of those turns (most, yes, but not overwhelmingly so).

The big problem I have with Duke is that there aren't very many ways to play it (good luck building a Duke engine and succeeding) and you can't really ease your way out of it once you commit.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2012, 10:04:31 pm by dondon151 »
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Jfrisch

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #178 on: August 06, 2012, 01:54:11 am »
+1

11 duke/duchies is obviously no easy slog... but neither is 8 provinces. The difference is three cards which, while significant, is counteracted rather heavily by just how much easier it is to get to 5, than to 8. Also, re-denial, if you can deny your opponent a few duchies and still go province, why not just go duke instead? you need at least 2 duchies for it to really be denial, and 2 duchies 8 provinces, is 10 cards vs 6 duchies, 6 dukes, 12 cards. For essentially any BM strategy Duke is better than province (the exception being masquerade/envoy, but hey if you are playing for 8 provinces envoy and masquerade are actually, much, much weaker so it doesn't really matter). As for duke and engines, I just don't understand people's point of view here. Alt-VP is necessary for a whole bunch of engines which otherwise don't have time to kick in, rarely is the relevant alt-vp great halls/nobles. 11 non-estate cards is a heck of a lot of green to have in your deck... but so is 8 provinces
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #179 on: August 06, 2012, 01:57:15 am »
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...compare 10 Ventures + 5 Copper against 15 Golds....

Okay. This is the last thing I'm going to say about Venture on this thread. I promise.

Maybe I'm being unclear in what I'm saying. But this is the last shot. I don't want to compare a deck with Ventures to a deck without and say which one is better. It's either too hard or not meaningful. What I've been saying is this:

Compare a Venture deck with no green cards to one with a lot of green cards. There is a small difference.

Compare another deck with no green cards to one with a lot of green cards. There is usually a big difference.

Hence, Venture decks are more resilient to greening than other decks.
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Robz888

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #180 on: August 06, 2012, 02:16:04 am »
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11 duke/duchies is obviously no easy slog... but neither is 8 provinces. The difference is three cards which, while significant, is counteracted rather heavily by just how much easier it is to get to 5, than to 8. Also, re-denial, if you can deny your opponent a few duchies and still go province, why not just go duke instead? you need at least 2 duchies for it to really be denial, and 2 duchies 8 provinces, is 10 cards vs 6 duchies, 6 dukes, 12 cards. For essentially any BM strategy Duke is better than province (the exception being masquerade/envoy, but hey if you are playing for 8 provinces envoy and masquerade are actually, much, much weaker so it doesn't really matter). As for duke and engines, I just don't understand people's point of view here. Alt-VP is necessary for a whole bunch of engines which otherwise don't have time to kick in, rarely is the relevant alt-vp great halls/nobles. 11 non-estate cards is a heck of a lot of green to have in your deck... but so is 8 provinces

Yeah, I think this whole "Duke is terrible in engines" thing is not entirely true. Sure, the engine that builds to two mega turns where you by all the Provinces at once is ill-suited to Duke. But you know, some engines are good and consistent, but don't end the game after 2 megaturns. In some of these cases I will still go the Duchy/Duke route.

Also, I'm not sure the favorability of Duke in cursing slogs has been adequately discussed. If you have Curses, and you can't get rid of them, Duke beats Province every time.
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #181 on: August 06, 2012, 02:22:44 am »
+1

Highway, eh, maybe it's better that #34.  But it is sure as hell a lot closer to #34 than #20.  Without +Buy or gain, it is just a Peddler.  And a $5 Peddler is a pretty rotten deal!  I buy Highway barely more than half the time, compared to over 80% for the general populace.  Whereas Bridge gives you the +Buy to take advantage of cost shenanigans (and Bridge is an overbought card to begin with), Highway is well and useless without specific triggers (really you need not just a separate +Buy, but sufficient trashing/cycling, and a lack of disruptive attacks).  Highway is #8 on Council Room for "Win Rate Without", the sure sign of an overrated card.  Okay, sure, when the combo comes together, Highway can be amazing, so maybe #34 is not quite fair.  But like my ranking of Black Market, it's so overrated that someone's got to do it.
$5 peddler is not that bad of a deal, it's not a horrible downside. You know what else is a $5 peddler a lot of the time? Bazaar. Both are only significantly better than a peddler in an engine. Bazaar finds engines more since it is a village, but Highway gains much more power in an engine than does Bazaar. So I don't see how Highway can be significantly lower than Bazaar.

Quote
So we come, now, to Duke.  I put it at #33 because I wanted to recognize that BM players seem to like it, but if it was based only on my experience, Duke would be lower than Highway and Merchant Ship, and rubbing shoulders with Outpost*.  This is a card I buy only 27 percent of the time, less often than Chancellor.  It relies on Duchy, and Duchy is far as I'm concerned "that card you buy when you're losing".   This is a card I win without far, far more often than I win with- most engines want nothing to do with Duke; most other alt-VP strategies are preferable because they don't rely on $5s, Curse games frequently 3-pile on Duchy, Curse and something else before you even have the chance to pick one up, I wouldn't even go Duke in many Big Money games (though it's better there).  So, okay, maybe I'm biased.  Let's look at the general Council Room stats to correct my mistakes.  Except that people in general only buy Duke 28 percent of the time, and lose with it more often than they win (albeit not quite as lopsidedly as I do).  Case closed.
These stats are super-misleading. I think you know that. Correlation does not imply causation. People don't lose because of Duchies. They buy Duchies when they're losing. Buying Duchies doesn't make you lose, especially when Duke is around. In fact, that's one thing you can say about how strong Duke is. It makes an otherwise bad card in Duchy into a really, really good one -- like one you want to buy ahead of Province a fair amount of the time.

http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20120420-112950-6d524d5b.html : Obviously a Minion engine is going to prefer Provinces to Dukes because otherwise it'd choke on green, but does that mean you should just skip the Minions and go Duke?  Not with Swindler around.  I don't even have to buy any Duchies here, I Swindle three of them away and that does the job nicely.
Quote
http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20120612-105400-6ec8040a.html : Also great against Dukes: Saboteur.  I'm certain that I would have won this game had my connection not been dropped.
Swindler and Saboteur counter Duke. Okay. A lot of cards have specific cards that counter them. What you don't mention is that a lot of otherwise dangerous attacks are not that dangerous to Duke decks. You can kind of ignore handsize attacks and be pretty resilient to cursing attacks since you're mostly only using 3 cards out of your hand anyway.

Quote
http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20120605-215708-d3625e79.html : Another time I try to Duke and fail.  My opponent merely needs to poach two Duchies, and can then take his time draining the Province stack.
I have no idea what you're doing with so many trashers in a Duke deck. You don't want to trash anything besides maybe your Estates.

Quote
http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20120615-064001-65ef9107.html : Governors make the Province route just plain faster here.  I try to take all your advice and go Duke, it fails spectacularly, back to not doing that.
Quote
http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20110718-150855-ff59e5fd.html : Duke can outscore Provinces, but not Colonies.  Not even on hardcore Big Money boards like this one, which featured no trashing, attack, or card draw worth a damn.
Yup. Governors are fast. It's also an anti-handsize attack, which is the opposite of what a Duke deck needs. And Colonies are worth too many points.

The thing is, most cards have things that beat them. Name any other card that has shown up so far, and you can find a similar set of games showing that card lose...
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Jfrisch

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #182 on: August 06, 2012, 02:39:55 am »
0

reasons not to go duke:
colonies
rushes
trash for benefit cards
mega-turn engines (though it depends, duke can do really well with bridge mega-turns)
engines which have tremendous 3 pile ending control
Sab/swindler
reasons to go duke:
hand discard attacks
cursers
BM game
engine which is too slow for provinces

I think the latter beats out the former.



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dondon151

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #183 on: August 06, 2012, 02:51:57 am »
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Yeah, I think this whole "Duke is terrible in engines" thing is not entirely true. Sure, the engine that builds to two mega turns where you by all the Provinces at once is ill-suited to Duke. But you know, some engines are good and consistent, but don't end the game after 2 megaturns. In some of these cases I will still go the Duchy/Duke route.

The reason I say that Duke is ill suited to engine strategies is because I'm pretty sure that most Duke engines will actually straight up lose to a BM Duke. You're building up your engine; your opponent just buys 5 Duchies, and you're pretty much dead in the water. If you deny 3 of the Duchies, might as well build your engine to buy Provinces, because those Dukes aren't cost effective.

The other thing is that most engines don't build linearly. It doesn't take 160% of the time for an engine to consistently buy cards at $8 vs. to consistently buy cards at $5.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2012, 02:58:30 am by dondon151 »
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Robz888

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #184 on: August 06, 2012, 02:56:34 am »
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Yeah, I think this whole "Duke is terrible in engines" thing is not entirely true. Sure, the engine that builds to two mega turns where you by all the Provinces at once is ill-suited to Duke. But you know, some engines are good and consistent, but don't end the game after 2 megaturns. In some of these cases I will still go the Duchy/Duke route.

The reason I say that Duke is ill suited to engine strategies is because I'm pretty sure that most Duke engines will actually straight up lose to a BM Duke. You're building up your engine; your opponent just buys 5 Duchies, and you're pretty much dead in the water. If you deny 3 of the Duchies, might as well build your engine to buy Provinces, because those Dukes aren't cost effective.

Well, that's true. But now and then I find myself in a situation where my opponent and I have both been building great engines, because it's an engine board. One of those, daring each other to make the first move, boards. We have just kept building up the engine. And then I decide to fire, and sometimes I see Duke and I say, hey, I can scoop up 3 Duchies right now, definitely win the split, and coast to a win on Dukes. It doesn't happen all the time, sure, but it happens.
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O

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #185 on: August 06, 2012, 02:57:29 am »
0

Yeah, I think this whole "Duke is terrible in engines" thing is not entirely true. Sure, the engine that builds to two mega turns where you by all the Provinces at once is ill-suited to Duke. But you know, some engines are good and consistent, but don't end the game after 2 megaturns. In some of these cases I will still go the Duchy/Duke route.

The reason I say that Duke is ill suited to engine strategies is because I'm pretty sure that most Duke engines will actually straight up lose to a BM Duke. You're building up your engine; your opponent just buys 5 Duchies, and you're pretty much dead in the water. If you deny 3 of the Duchies, might as well build your engine to buy Provinces, because those Dukes aren't cost effective.

Well, that's true. But now and then I find myself in a situation where my opponent and I have both been building great engines, because it's an engine board. One of those, daring each other to make the first move, boards. We have just kept building up the engine. And then I decide to fire, and sometimes I see Duke and I say, hey, I can scoop up 3 Duchies right now, definitely win the split, and coast to a win on Dukes. It doesn't happen all the time, sure, but it happens.

It happens about as frequently as a Gardens engines does. As in, not very.
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DStu

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #186 on: August 06, 2012, 04:09:32 am »
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@ Haggler vs. Develop: So untrue.  I mean, I really like Develop for when it is strong, but it bascially needs to important parts of the deck to be $2 appart, and either a very usefull card in the middle, or the possibility to align Devlop and its target.

Haggler works just in BigMoney. I remember BM-Haggler to be not the strongest one, so really playing Haggler-BM might lose to lots of things. But Haggler does in this situation what it should. Free Silver for Gold (or Haggler), free Silver for Duchy, free Gold for Province.  And it gets better quite easily. Any Cantrip at $4 or $5 gives you a free Silver, so in BM you reduce the question if you for $4 or $5 take the Cantrip or the Silver to the question if you take the Cantrip and the Silver. Or the question if you take Cantrip or the Gold to the question of you take the Cantrip and the Gold.

And that's just BigMoney, in engines you just need the components (or support) to not having the same price, compared to Develop, where you need to have them $2 appart.
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dondon151

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #187 on: August 06, 2012, 05:13:31 am »
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I've actually always wondered why Haggler isn't very, very good. I mean, I know it isn't. But most of the time, when you want it, it's kind of like +$6, +1 buy or better.
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O

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #188 on: August 06, 2012, 05:16:55 am »
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Haggler certainly has games where it's excellent. It's a decently strong 5$, the only problem is that 5$ is at the upper end for a terminal silver (no shut up goons doesn't count).
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Qvist

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 3/4 posted
« Reply #189 on: August 06, 2012, 06:45:59 am »
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A few hours until the previews will come out. So there's time to read the last part and discuss a little.

The Best $5 Cards - Part 4/4
#10 ▼2 Tactician (Seaside) Weighted Average: 10.63 ▼0.50 / Median: 10 =0 / Mode: 10 ▲2 / Standard Deviation: 6.1 ▼1.1
Highest Rank(s): #2 (2x), #3 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #26 (1x), #28 (1x), #32 (1x)

Tactician has a huge lead over the last card with over 3 points. The consensus it lost may also be the reason for losing 2 ranks as it had much more lower ranks than last time. It was 8 times in the Top 5.

Tactician makes use of the phrase "One big turn is better than 2 mediocre ones". So in deck in that you can't guarantee a Province each turn, with Tactician it's still very likely to get 2 Provinces each 2 turns. This applies especially to cards that take profit of big hand sizes like Forge, Bank or Tournament+Province. It's also great to get key cards like King's Court early or as a defense against discarding attacks (0/8 is definitely better than 3/3). And in combination with Black Market or Action cards that let you gain virtual money like Vault/Secret Chamber, Baron or a bunch of Festivals/Conspirators/Grand Markets you can even setup a Double Tactician strategy. You can play your second Tactician in your Tactician turn and still have enough money to buy something and get another 10 card hand in the next hand.
#9 ▼3 Torturer (Intrigue) Weighted Average: 10.40 ▼1.84 / Median: 9 ▼2.5 / Mode: 9 ▼3 / Standard Deviation: 5.0 ▲2.8
Highest Rank(s): #4 (4x) / Lowest Rank(s): #23 (1x), #24 (1x), #27 (1x)

Torturer is the 5th best $5 Attack Card. It was 11 times in the Top 5 and it has very few low ranks, therefore the much lower deviation this time. But it lost still 3 ranks with nearly 2 points worse.

A single Torturer is not that great. You can choose to take a Curse in hand or discard. Taking the Curse in hand is not that great as getting it onto your discard pile or even on top. If you have a Forge or a Jack of All Trades in hand, a Curse in hand doesn't hurt you that much. In all other cases it's just a Militia-like discarding attack. But multiple Torturers can really torture you, especially because you have a choice, but still are between the devil and the deep blue sea. So Torturer highly depends from Villages; especially with Border Villages, Fishing Villages or Crossroads a Torturer Chain is definitely the way to go. The first one that gets this set up is likely to win. When the Curses are gone, Torturers are no danger anymore. But the Curse split is likely highly in your favor and you already have a good running engine to maybe pick a few more treasures and then go green. Only with direct Cursers you may still skip them, because until you've set up this chain, there are few Curses left. The drop in rating may also come from the time it takes to setup this chain if there are no strong villages. Torturer/Chapel is a #69 ▼27 opening and Torturer/Crossroads is at #91.
#8 ▼3 Minion (Intrigue) Weighted Average: 9.69 ▼1.46 / Median: 9 ▼3 / Mode: 7 ▼1 / Standard Deviation: 4.5 ▲1.8
Highest Rank(s): #3 (4x) / Lowest Rank(s): #18 (1x), #19 (1x), #26 (1x)

Minion is the 4th best $5 Attack Card. It was only voted in the Top 5 8 times. It has a really low deviation now, but lost 3 ranks like Torturer.

Minion's discard attack can hit even stronger than any other discard attack. You have one card more than with Militia, but against Minion you cannot choose which card to keep. The non-terminal $2 is great in every engine and the discard option helps you to cycle faster. Those two benefits make it a self-working engine. If you win the Minion split, you can play the first Minions in your hand to get $2 and the last one to get the next 4 cards, then just proceed. And every non-terminal card with virtual coins and/or a non-terminal trasher fit very well in a Minion deck. Yes, there has to be some requirements: You are playing a 2-player game and have a thin deck and don't play with Colony, ... to name the major issues. The time it takes to setup this and these restriction may be the reason for the lower rating this time. But then a Minion deck is super strong. Minion/Chapel is the #13 ▲4 best opening.
#7 ▲2 Ghost Ship (Seaside) Weighted Average: 9.29 ▲1.30 / Median: 8 ▲1 / Mode: 7 ▲1 / Standard Deviation: 5.7 ▲2.7
Highest Rank(s): #2 (1x), #3 (1x), #4 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #24 (1x), #28 (1x), #31 (1x)

Ghost Ship is now the third best $5 attack card. It was 11 times in the Top 5 and has much more agreement than last time and went up 2 ranks.

Ghost Ship is very strong because it's a discard attack in which you don't have to discard, you have to top deck. So this messes up this turn and the next turn. You have then to choose to get 2 mediocre turns or a bad turn and hopefully a better next turn if you aren't getting "ghostshipped" again. This results in really slow games in which it takes long until you reshuffle and see the newly bought cards the first time. The difference to all other strong attack cards is you don't want to play as many as you can in one turn, you just want to constantly play it each turn. That's the reason why Ghost Ship with Schemes can be devastating. If there are no good defense cards / counters, you are in a pin you aren't likely to get out soon. So in comparism to Torturer and Minion a single play is stronger and may be the reason it was voted higher than those 2 cards this time. Ghost Ship/Chapel is the #23 best opening.
#6 ▲9 Governor (Promo) Weighted Average: 8.41 ▲9.13 / Median: 7 ▲8.5 / Mode: 7 ▲4 / Standard Deviation: 8.1 ▲1.5
Highest Rank(s): #1 (5x) / Lowest Rank(s): #23 (2x), #39 (1x), #46 (1x)

Governor made a big jump of 9 ranks and is over 9 points better. The deviation is also lower, but still pretty high for a high ranked card. It has two really big outliers, with one being third last! On the other side it's the first card with a first place - 5 times!

The different options make it difficult to play. And depending on what you choose it can a really bad card or a great one. That may also explain the high deviation. Like Council Room, the +1 card may pretty huge for your opponent if you choose +3 cards. And if you even choose that multiple times in a row, you give your opponent a great hand too. So either do that only if you a) play a discard attack afterwards, b) can end that game in a mega turn or c) possess your opponent afterwards. In all these 3 cases Governor is really powerful. The remodel effect is bad in the early game, you're helping your opponent even more for letting him trash his Coppers or get a Silver for an Estate, you can use it in the end game to remodel your treasure card in respective Victory card. The best option without above mentioned supporting cards may be the Gold gaining. The Silver can be really bad for your opponent in a Colony game or if he builds a deck with high action density. And you can pick up Governors over Golds because you can get Golds with Governor later. That leads to a state where Governor can combo with itself. Gain many Governors, choose the gain Gold option every time. With many Governors and Gold in your deck use a few Governors for +3 cards and the rest to remodel your Gold into Provinces in a mega turn. Its power in a thin deck shows the rank #3 ▲3 in the best openings for Governor/Chapel.
#5 ▼1 Hunting Party (Cornucopia) Weighted Average: 5.98 ▲0.14 / Median: 5 ▲1.5 / Mode: 5 ▲2 / Standard Deviation: 3.0 ▲1.1
Highest Rank(s): #3 (8x) / Lowest Rank(s): #13 (1x), #14 (1x), #17 (1x)

Another big gap of 2.4 points and we're in the Top 5. It has a really low deviation, because it was never voted first or second, but has no really bad votes. It loses one rank although it is a little better than last time. It would stay on #4 if we take the unweighted ranking into account.

After Stables and Laboratory, Hunting Party is the best non-terminal hand-size increasing $5 card. The advantage is the even better filter effect than Stables to get the cards in hand you really need. It's also an engine on its own, just have one Gold and at least a Silver and a good terminal action which gives you at least $2, like Goons, Monument, Horse Traders, Haggler or Baron. With at least 5-6 Hunting Parties you are almost guaranteed a Province each turn because you only have few different cards in your deck and get those all in hand. Going green doesn't hurt you much (only Duchies) and with Cursers you only need a Hunting Party more to filter Curses. It's not strictly better than Laboratory if there are no different cards left in your deck, but that mostly occurs only if you already have a very strong deck or you have a heavily trimmed deck what you don't need when you go for Hunting Parties. The only thing you have to watch out in such a deck is when to trigger the reshuffle so you get at least a Hunting Party in the next hand again. Hunting Party/Chapel is the #22 ▲2 best opening.
#4 ▲3 Ill-Gotten Gains (Hinterlands) Weighted Average: 5.91 ▲3.41 / Median: 5 ▲2 / Mode: 4 =0 / Standard Deviation: 4.3 ▲4.4
Highest Rank(s): #1 (1x), #2 (1x), #3 (6x) / Lowest Rank(s): #15 (1x), #20 (1x), #28 (1x)

Ill-Gotten-Gains is no attack per se, but we could call it the third best $5 attack card instead of Ghost Ship. It went up 3 ranks and over 3 points and its deviation is halved, so the agreement is high. It also has one first rank. It is on #5 in the unweighted ranking. But in this list it was very close too, it has a lead over Hunting Party of only 0.07 points.

I remember reading Ill-Gotten-Gains the first time and it seemed not that strong. You have only a one-shot curser to get a better Copper? The previously high deviation showed that many players thought about it that way. But that's not like it is. A Ill-Gotten-Gains Rush is really strong. Just buy Ill-Gotten-Gains every time you get to $5. The optional extra Copper make that possible. With a 5/2 opening it's even possible to deal out a Curse before the opponent's first reshuffle, especially for the first player. When the IGGs are gone, the Curses are gone too, so you just have to empty the Duchy pile to win the game and IGGs give enough money to accomplish this. Often you are even able to pick up a Province in between. But you have to be sure to hit your opponent. While these Curses are nearly unstoppable, not even with Moat or Lighthouse (making IGG even stronger), with Trader or Ambassador on the board the Curse pile won't be empty if you empty the IGG pile and your opponent may have enough time to pick up enough Provinces before you empty 2 piles. The same applies with other Cursers on the board. But in all other cases when IGG is on the board, a IGG rush is probably the dominant strategy. It has currently the highest per gain win rate of all kingdom cards (1.21 ▲0.01), even higher than Grand Market or any alternative victory card.
#3 =0 Wharf (Seaside) Weighted Average: 3.52 ▲1.37 / Median: 3 ▲2 / Mode: 3 ▲2 / Standard Deviation: 2.0 ▲0.5
Highest Rank(s): #1 (8x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (2x), #14 (1x)

Wharf is the best non-attack $5 card. There is no doubt, it has only one rank below #10, it was 8 times first and it has the lowest deviation of all $5 cards too. It was 27 times on #3. It has a lead over Ill-Gotten-Gains of 2.4 points.

+2 Cards are mostly weak. The benefit you get in this turn is pretty weak too. But the duration effect of +2 Cards without playing an action is like 2 Caravans or if you played 2 Laboratories at the start of your next turn. And Laboratory is already a #15 Card of the same cost. If you have 2 Wharves and you play them alternating each turn, you start each turn with 7 cards and basically each Wharf is a Council Room without the drawback of giving your opponent an additional card. And as already mentioned the +Buy for a terminal draw is really nice too, you need it with so many cards in hand. You can use Wharf for Big Money with less probability of colliding (because of the duration effect) or you can build an engine. In combination with Fishing Village you are almost guaranteed big hands (like you're playing Double Tactician) and even have enough Actions left for Attacks. No matter if you're going Big Money or build a engine with it, Wharf is so strong that those games are over very quick. Wharf's draw and +Buy is also good for Fool's Gold, making Wharf/Fool's Gold the #12 ▲32 best opening. Wharf/Chapel is "only" on #46 ▼19.
#2 =0 Witch (Base) Weighted Average: 2.55 ▲1.20 / Median: 2 =0 / Mode: 2 =0 / Standard Deviation: 4.4 ▼0.1
Highest Rank(s): #1 (20x) / Lowest Rank(s): #10 (1x), #23 (1x), #26 (1x)

It was very close, even closer than last year, but Witch is only #2. With 20 first and 27 second places there is no doubt about such a high rank. It has two strange outliers and was only voted 7 times outside the Top 5.

Cursers are the strongest cards in the game, I think everyone agrees. There are only 5 guaranteed Cursers, one gives you no benefit and only costs $4, another one is a one-shot and ranked #4 on this list, the third one has Potion in its cost and the fourth is a Prize Card. So Witch is a guaranteed Curser with no drawback and definitely one of the strongest cards in the game. Not only you can curse your opponent, you get 2 additional cards. Have you ever played your King's Court with Witch? This is basically "Game Over" for your opponent. The defense with Witch on the board is mostly to get it for yourself, faster than your opponent and play it more often. Witch/Chapel is the #4 ▲1 best opening, but it is good with every 5/2 split. It is in the Top 100 14 times, even Witch/nothing is on #93 ▼40.
#1 =0 Mountebank (Prosperity) Weighted Average: 2.41 ▲1.12 / Median: 2 ▼1 / Mode: 1 =0 / Standard Deviation: 4.2 ▲1.0
Highest Rank(s): #1 (29x) / Lowest Rank(s): #16 (2x), #18 (1x), #22 (1x)

As already said, the decision was close, only 0.14 points between those two cards. But it has 9 more first places and was only voted 6 times outside the Top 5 even though its outliers are even less explainable.

Witch already is very strong, but Mountebank managed to beat it again. Yes, it cannot deal out curses guaranteed, but dealing out 2 junk cards per play is really strong and if the opponent has a Curse in hand, he is mostly behind in the Curse split anyway. So, it's stronger in the beginning where junk hurts you more. Your deck can get clogged up so fast. Then it may not hit every time in the middle game, but when the Curse pile is empty, you can still deal out Coppers, that's another advantage. While $2 is mostly weaker than +2 cards (especially in Colony games), there's no big difference in Cursing games as your deck has more junk and it's more difficult to get a money average of $1 per card at the start anyway. So, it really depends on the board which card is stronger, but mostly it is Mountebank because it hurts more. Just beware with Trader on the board or you may be giving your opponent 2 Silvers. Another reason for Mountebank being first is the opening list. Mountebank/Chapel is the overall best opening =0. Mountebank is 13 ▼1 times in the Top 100, with Mountebank/nothing even on #64 ▼35.

To the $6+ cards
« Last Edit: August 10, 2012, 07:42:28 am by Qvist »
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werothegreat

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #190 on: August 06, 2012, 07:49:39 am »
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I have never heard the idiom "between the devil and the deep blue sea" before.  I was under the impression Anglophones were supposed to say "between a rock and a hard place."
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #191 on: August 06, 2012, 07:56:51 am »
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I have never heard the idiom "between the devil and the deep blue sea" before.  I was under the impression Anglophones were supposed to say "between a rock and a hard place."

I searched for an equivalent for that german proverb and found that. As nobody complained the last time, I leaved it in this time.

werothegreat

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #192 on: August 06, 2012, 08:01:20 am »
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I have never heard the idiom "between the devil and the deep blue sea" before.  I was under the impression Anglophones were supposed to say "between a rock and a hard place."

I searched for an equivalent for that german proverb and found that. As nobody complained the last time, I leaved it in this time.

I'm not complaining.  It adds color!
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #193 on: August 06, 2012, 08:03:43 am »
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I have never heard the idiom "between the devil and the deep blue sea" before.  I was under the impression Anglophones were supposed to say "between a rock and a hard place."

I searched for an equivalent for that german proverb and found that. As nobody complained the last time, I leaved it in this time.

I'm not complaining.  It adds color!

Ah, ok ;) Even better.

Jack Rudd

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #194 on: August 06, 2012, 08:16:31 am »
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I have never heard the idiom "between the devil and the deep blue sea" before.  I was under the impression Anglophones were supposed to say "between a rock and a hard place."
They're both reasonably common English phrases.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #195 on: August 06, 2012, 08:26:03 am »
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Hunting Party> IGG
Witch> Mountebank
Otherwise, this list looks good. I'm glad to see Governor get his respect.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #196 on: August 06, 2012, 08:58:51 am »
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I searched for an equivalent for that german proverb and found that. As nobody complained the last time, I leaved it in this time.
The direct translation also sounds good to me.
dict.cc is pretty good at finding translations for entire proverbs instead of word by word if you want to do it that way.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #197 on: August 06, 2012, 09:17:17 am »
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Not a whole lot to complain about in the top 10.  The biggest problem is that Ghost Ship is a few spots overrated: it can be incredibly demoralizing when it works, but it can't hold a candle to actual cursing, and it has a whole host of counters that make it skippable.  (And most of these counters are cards you'll often want to pick up anyway, like say Menagerie or Tactician).  The other cards in the 6 through 9 range (I had Ghost Ship at 10) are pretty much interchangeable, I think.

Also Hunting Party should definitely be better than IGG.  IGG is probably a little more game-warping when the rush is viable, but HP is plenty game-warping too, and the rush is beatable more often than you think.  Whereas Hunting Party is skippable almost never, in my experience.

I'm glad to see Mountebank is still over Witch.  Even if Witch is a little bit better in the head-to-head or in hardcore Big Money games, Mountebank is more powerful becuase it kills engines more dead: you can sometimes power through Witch-given curses with strong trashing and a top-tier engine, such a thing is VERY rare against Mountebank.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #198 on: August 06, 2012, 10:53:53 am »
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11 duke/duchies is obviously no easy slog... but neither is 8 provinces. The difference is three cards which, while significant, is counteracted rather heavily by just how much easier it is to get to 5, than to 8. Also, re-denial, if you can deny your opponent a few duchies and still go province, why not just go duke instead? you need at least 2 duchies for it to really be denial, and 2 duchies 8 provinces, is 10 cards vs 6 duchies, 6 dukes, 12 cards. For essentially any BM strategy Duke is better than province (the exception being masquerade/envoy, but hey if you are playing for 8 provinces envoy and masquerade are actually, much, much weaker so it doesn't really matter). As for duke and engines, I just don't understand people's point of view here. Alt-VP is necessary for a whole bunch of engines which otherwise don't have time to kick in, rarely is the relevant alt-vp great halls/nobles. 11 non-estate cards is a heck of a lot of green to have in your deck... but so is 8 provinces

Yeah, I think this whole "Duke is terrible in engines" thing is not entirely true. Sure, the engine that builds to two mega turns where you by all the Provinces at once is ill-suited to Duke. But you know, some engines are good and consistent, but don't end the game after 2 megaturns. In some of these cases I will still go the Duchy/Duke route.

Also, I'm not sure the favorability of Duke in cursing slogs has been adequately discussed. If you have Curses, and you can't get rid of them, Duke beats Province every time.

Cursing slogs do improve Duchy- but they do not necessarily improve Duke, because of the likelihood of a Duchy/Curse/X three-pile ending before the Dukes become relevant.  Buying Duke in a Curse game is a lot like chasing after the Grand Markets in BM-Province: great in theory, very often not worth it in practice.  Example: http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20110912-100740-5dfd902f.html . Yeah, of course winning the Duchy split is key here.  But Duke is more or less irrelevant.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: $5 cards Part 4/4 posted
« Reply #199 on: August 06, 2012, 12:10:13 pm »
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The final part of the list is really the best. I am glad the consensus here is basically correct. I don't know about having Ghost Ship over Minion and Torturer, but they're all close there.

Actually, I'd say the biggest mistake--and I know chwhite disagrees--is Mountebank over Witch. Lately, I have really come to appreciate how often Mountebank's attack is blocked because your opponent reveals a Curse. Check out this miserable game where I give my opponent the first curse (I have first turn advantage) and then he reveals that curse 4 of the next 5 times I play it. We split the freaking curses 8-2 against me: http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201207/17/game-20120717-173310-a89458a8.html

Sure, Mountebank shuts down engines harder, but Witch actually makes your hands have less money on average (because Mountebank's Copper counterbalances the Curse in terms of raw $$). They are the two most powerful cards in the game, but the fact that Witch's attack is unblockable except for Reactions is a definitive point in its favor.
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