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Author Topic: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards  (Read 15587 times)

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Qvist

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The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« on: August 13, 2012, 09:19:24 am »
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The Best Potion Cost Cards
#10 =0 Transmute (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 9.89 ▲0.09 / Median: 10 =0 / Mode: 10 =0 / Standard Deviation: 0.3 ▼0.1
Highest Rank(s): #9 (7x) / Lowest Rank(s): #10 (59x)

While the last time only one of you not voted it last, this time there are 7 players who did so. But still this is one of the most obvious placements of all lists.

Why is that card so bad? You need trashers early in the game. For Transmute you need to open Potion. Then you buy a Transmute in turn 3/4 and have your Transmute somewhere between turn 5 and 8! That is really slow. And what's the benefit? You can trash Estates to get Gold, ok that's really nice, but only for the 3 starting Estates and you have to draw them together. If you trash Copper you get another Transmute! Why does anyone want that? And trash actions to get Duchies could only ne nice in the end game, but still make no big difference. You can also trash a Curse, but you won't get anything for that. For a pure trasher it's too slow, for a trash-for-benefit card it's too weak. When do you really want to buy one? Yes, it's better with dual-type cards like Great Hall (for Duchy and Gold) and you can heavily trash for Gold->Transmute->Duchy and try to three-pile, but I think that's just too slow in the most cases. I think the only reason when you want to buy it, if you want that Potion anyway and you desperately need a trasher anyway.
#9 =0 Philosopher's Stone (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 8.56 ▲0.09 / Median: 9 =0 / Mode: 9 =0 / Standard Deviation: 1.5 ▼0.4
Highest Rank(s): #2 (1x), #3 (1x), #4 (2x) / Lowest Rank(s): #10 (4x)

4 of the remaining 7 last places has Philosopher's Stone. But this time it has some pretty high votes too with one even being second. It was 47 times voted on #9.

With Philosopher's Stone on the board and it is the only Potion cost card, it's often ignorable. And it anti-synergizes with all other Potion cards except for Familiar (with University you get a lot of cards, but mostly to build an engine). With a relative cost of ~5.5$ it's in direct comparism to Gold. This means you need 20 cards and no drawing power. With no +Buy you need 10 turns to achieve this. This is often way too late. This card gets better and better the longer the game lasts. But you want high value treasures early in the game. The only reason going for it, may be in Curse-heavy games where it's obvious you get big decks. Also it has this nice synergy with Herbalist.
#8 =0 Possession (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 6.67 ▲0.21 / Median: 7 ▲0.5 / Mode: 8 =0 / Standard Deviation: 2.1 ▲0.2
Highest Rank(s): #1 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #9 (2x), #10 (1x)

Possession shares the highest deviation in this list with another card. It was voted 3 times first, but also last once. It was voted on #8 23 times.

Possession seems so powerful, but in reality it isn't. It's just frustating. There's much to say about Possession, but I keep it short. First you have to realize, that it's really the most expensive kingdom card in the game so far as it costs ~8.5$. So, if you want it and it is the only Potion cost card on the board, don't open Potion. And the cost also means it's in direct competition with Province. When you've bought a Possession you mostly could have bought a Province instead. Its high cost makes it stronger in Colony games. When does it shine? Especially in 2-player games when your opponent opens with strong cards like Ambassador or Masquerade, you may look after an opportunity to send good cards (of course especially Provinces and Colonies) to you. With King's Court Possession is just madness. With Council Room or especially Governor you can boost the turn you get from your opponent and may even boost your own turn afterwards if he has them too. When your opponent has strong trash-for-benefit cards like Apprentice, you can even trash Provinces or Colonies to get the benefit. And if he has cards with choices like Envoy you either get stronger benefit or can mess his deck up. And if he has duration cards you can also profit from them. It may seem now that there are many situations where Possession is good. That's true, but still often ignorable because of its slowness.
#7 ▼4 Alchemist (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 6.03 ▼2.33 / Median: 6 ▼3 / Mode: 5 ▼3 / Standard Deviation: 1.8 ▼0.1
Highest Rank(s): #1 (2x), #2 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (8x), #9 (1x), #10 (1x)

Alchemist made the biggest change in this list. Losing 4 ranks in a 10 card list is big. It's another card which has first and last places. It was voted 17 times on #5.

Alchemist is strictly superior to Laboratory and if you have a lot of Alchemists to draw most of your deck, you're almost unstoppable. But how do you get there? First you have to buy Potion and then you have to spend the next turns to buy Alchemists. That's really slow and with no source of +Buy, you aren't able to build up your economy at the same time. Alchemists are therefore more powerful in Colony games, but often weak in Province games unless you have any supporting card. That's the reason Herbalist was added in Alchemy. With Herbalist you're able to put your Potion back and get the needed +Buy. Cards that profit from big hand sizes like Bank (if you have the +Buys) are great. Outpost also synergizes perfectly. Beware of opponents playing with Minions or Masquerade.
#6 ▲1 University (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 5.94 ▲0.49 / Median: 6 =0 / Mode: 6 =0 / Standard Deviation: 1.8 ▼0.4
Highest Rank(s): #2 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (9x), #9 (2x)

It was very close, but University is better than Alchemist. It has no first and no last place, but still a relatively high deviation. It was voted 15 times on #6.

The effect of University is by far not bad. Unlike Workshop you don't need to spend an action to gain a card and you don't get weak $4 cards, you get strong $5 ones. And you are able to play all of them because of the +2 Actions. But, it has the same problem as all Potion cards have. It's very slow. If you go for University and open Potion/X you lose at least one reshuffle to get the critical $5 cards (and you need to get a Potion only to get strong non-Potion cards, what?). You you have to be sure to have enough time to catch up and this really depends if the cards on the board are really so strong that you want as many as you can get. So, it's very board dependant and is really nice with Library, Wharf, City, Torturer and any money producing cantrip. It has only few combination potential with other Potion cards. University/Scrying Pool looks nice but is even slower. Only University/Vineyard is really strong. Beware of 3-piling with University.
#5 =0 Golem (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 5.35 ▼0.43 / Median: 5 =0 / Mode: 5 =0 / Standard Deviation: 1.8 ▲0.1
Highest Rank(s): #2 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (7x), #9 (2x)

Golem hasn't a first nor a last place too and the same high deviation as University. It stays on the same place, but loses some points. It was voted 14 times on #5. It is #4 in the unweighted ranking.

Like Throne Room, Golem's strength heavily depends from the action cards on the board, what makes it hard to rate. But it hasn't the drawback of Throne Room or King's Court to have at least one action card in hand. You can use Golem either in action-heavy decks and may be able to play more of them in your turns even with Curses or Victory cards in your deck. It acts also as a pseudo-village. Just beware of Golem+Trasher because you have to play the drawn action card and you don't want to risk trashing a Province. Or you use it to play your only 1-2 action cards in your deck everytime you play Golem. Counting House+X Golems guarantees to draw all Coppers in hand. Golem+Scheme+strong attack is also very nice because you can play your attack every turn. Even with those cards on board Golem is very expensive with a cost of ~6.5$. It's very risky to open Potion with Golem being the only Potion card on the board.
#4 ▲2 Apothecary (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 4.86 ▲0.41 / Median: 5 ▲0.5 / Mode: 4 ▲4 / Standard Deviation: 2.1 =0
Highest Rank(s): #1 (1x), #2 (3x) / Lowest Rank(s): #9 (5x), #10 (1x)

Apothecary is the best rated card with a last rank and it shares the place for the highest deviation with Possession. It is the winner of this list for going up 2 ranks and is on #5 in the unweighted ranking. It was voted 18 times on #4.

Apothecary seems very weak at first glance because of its profit of Copper. But unlike many other Potion cards it's very strong at the start at getting very strong cards very early in the game. Buy a early Forge and with your next big hand you can get rid of all your Coppers; or get an early King's Court or Goons. Later in the game it's almost never a bad card, because it's at least a cantrip and even if it draws no cards you can set the order of your next cards (basically a Cartographer without the ability to discard). It's also strong if you build your strategy around Copper. Apothecary/Coppersmith can easily net you Provinces. The problem still is, it leaves the junk on top of the deck. With Native Village you can use this as an advantage. With 8 Coppers, a few Apothecaries and at least one Native Village you are able to buy a Province each turn. With no strong $6+ card or no synergizing card on the board, Apothecary often is not worth a Potion.
#3 ▲1 Vineyard (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 3.95 ▲0.85 / Median: 4 ▲0.5 / Mode: 3 ▲1 / Standard Deviation: 1.7 ▼0.2
Highest Rank(s): #1 (1x), #2 (4x) / Lowest Rank(s): #8 (3x)

Vineyard is the first card that has no last or second last rank. It is this time nearly one point better (the best improvement in this list) and therefore in the Top 3 this time. It was voted third 26 times.

Vineyard is another card that heavily depends from the action cards on the board. You definitely want +Buy or at least gainers to get enough action cards to make it worthwhile. +Buy is also better in getting Vineyards, because you don't waant to "waste" $6P for a Vineyard. Beside +Buy and gainers, you definitely need Villages or many catrips to be able to play all of your actions, cheap cantrips like Hamlet or Pawn are very good. Like all alternative VP strategies, you can totally ignore Provinces what gives you more time getting more action cards. Unlike all other Potion cards you can delay buying the Potion until mid-game when you already have a good running engine. It has nearly no practical limit in the max VP you can get from one Vineyard what can make it really strong and often a clearly superior strategy over Provinces.
#2 =0 Scrying Pool (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 2.45 ▲0.45 / Median: 2 ▲1 / Mode: 2 =0 / Standard Deviation: 1.5 ▲0.2
Highest Rank(s): #1 (8x) / Lowest Rank(s): #6 (3x), #7 (1x), #8 (1x)

Scrying Pool has 8 first places and still a big lead over all previous cards. It was voted second 34 times.

Attacks that mess up the top of your deck are often weak. Scrying Pool is different because of its drawing power. It may draw your whole deck. Buy you mustn't have a lot of treasure cards in your deck. Its power is therefore dependant of trashers on the board and action cards that net you money. Secret Chamber/Vault is especially nice, just discard all action cards and keep one Scrying Pool in hand to get a lot of money and draw them again with your Scrying Pool. Attacks that tend to be swingy because of the top card of your opponent, like Jester or Swindler, are gaining value with Scrying Pools, because you can choose which card to keep on top. If those cards are not in the supply, Scrying Pool is just a Spy (which draws sometimes an additional card) and not worth the Potion.
#1 =0 Familiar (Alchemy) Weighted Average: 1.28 ▲0.12 / Median: 1 =0 / Mode: 1 =0 / Standard Deviation: 0.8 ▲0.3
Highest Rank(s): #1 (51x) / Lowest Rank(s): #4 (2x), #5 (1x)

51 first places and 11 second places speaks for itself, no doubt about Familiar's rank.

Cursing attacks are the strongest cards in the game. A cantrip curser is just ridiculous strong. If you haven't a plan for defense to get no curses at all or easily deal with them (which is very rare), you can't skip over Familiar. What makes Familiar one of the most hated cards is its cost. If one player doesn't get $3P while the other hits it in turn 3/4, the player who hasn't gained the Familiar is in a clear disadvantage.

To the favourite cards
« Last Edit: August 16, 2012, 03:35:01 am by Qvist »
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jsh357

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2012, 09:23:37 am »
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Hooray for Alchemist dropping 4 places!  Not too much to argue with on this one; almost all my rankings are the same.  I doubt this will change much over time, but Transmute could be significantly better now that Dark Ages is coming.  We'll have to see.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2012, 09:24:36 am »
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While the last time only one of you not voted it last, this time there are 7 players who did so. But still this is one of the most obvious placements of all lists.
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Qvist

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2012, 09:25:44 am »
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While the last time only one of you not voted it last, this time there are 7 players who did so. But still this is one of the most obvious placements of all lists.

Thanks. Updated.

chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2012, 09:44:37 am »
+5

1. Familiar
2. Scrying Pool
3. Vineyard
4. Apothecary
5. Alchemist
6. Golem
7. University
8. Possession
9. Philosopher's Stone
10. Transmute

Alchemist is now so "overrated" it's become severely underrated.  It is better than University for sure; University is far, far slower and more trappy.  Golem is so expensive that I'd call Alchemist better than it too; and frankly I'm starting to have doubts about Apothecary, after being a fan of it earlier than most.

Yes, Alchemist is often skippable.  But it is not skippable more often than something like Golem, and it can still be very, very dominating when it's good.  People are wildly overcorrecting, and frankly going off the rails here.

If you trash Copper you get another Transmute! Why does anyone want that? And trash actions to get Duchies could only ne nice in the end game, but still make no big difference. You can also trash a Curse, but you won't get anything for that.

You want Copper-> Transmute with Vineyards, and I've used it on Copper in Menagerie decks too.  As for trashing Curse, it's not like other trashers give you something either, so it's just as good as any other single-card trasher for that.

I almost put Transmute over PStone, and probably would have if the article on the Herbalist/PStone combo hadn't been fresh in my mind when I put it together- the fact that PStone has that one particular, strong synergy is the tiebreaker in my mind, as they're similarly narrow otherwise.  In fact, I find a use for Transmute more often.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2012, 09:48:48 am by chwhite »
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2012, 09:57:45 am »
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I really don't understand why Alchemist would be so weak, below Apothecary and University !
According to me, this is only weak when there already already better drawers and villages easier to purchase, including Laboratory, right ?
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2012, 10:06:37 am »
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Y NO LOVE 4 PHIL STONE? D:
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2012, 10:15:19 am »
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I really don't understand why Alchemist would be so weak, below Apothecary and University !
According to me, this is only weak when there already already better drawers and villages easier to purchase, including Laboratory, right ?

I really like Apothecary more, it fits better into more decks, but it's true that if Alchemist is strong, it's really strong (but nevertheless could use an Apothecary to tidy up and find the Potion).

edit: but I also have Unversity and Golem below Alchemist. University is usually not a Village that's good enough to build your engine around, but really prefers having some second Village around. And Golem I at the moment don't have a good way to play, either I build an engine, than usually the Golem is not really needed (especially given that I have to buy a
Potion for it), or I don't build an engine, than the Golem is too expensive.  There are some combos, and probably I'm also missing something, but I live quite well without the Golem most of the time at the moment.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2012, 10:18:41 am by DStu »
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2012, 10:25:15 am »
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While the last time only one of you not voted it last, this time there are 7 players who did so. But still this is one of the most obvious placements of all lists.


I think PStone's pretty close, but it's clear that it has to be one or the other.   Kinda like Scout vs. Thief, except Transmute and PStone are way, way better than those two.

I'd say that Adventurer and Chapel are the only two true slam dunks. 
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2012, 10:27:48 am »
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I think Adventurer is the clearest. Ambassador was pretty close to chapel before DA, though DA seems to be helping chapel a lot more than ambassador.

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2012, 11:07:49 am »
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I'm beginning to think we overestimate Golem.  I buy it far less than any other potion card, and I do better when I don't buy it.  Really, the only time I've seen it useful is A) With other potion cards (namely Familiar) or B) With KC.  But everything is useful with KC.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2012, 11:15:10 am »
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University better than Golem, maybe? Other than that, I agree with this list 100%.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2012, 12:11:13 pm »
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Heh, this list pretty much matches mine perfectly, which is a first. Only Golem and Apothecary were switched, and they're the two I ummed and ahhed over the most anyway. Really, I think there are some very clear tiers of cards here:

Transmute, Phil Stone
Alchemist, Possession, University
Golem, Apothecary, Vineyard
Scrying Pool
Familiar

And really it's working out how to order those tiers that matters here. Okay, you can make a few arguments for shifting one or two cards around tiers, but I don't think there's much.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #13 on: August 13, 2012, 12:19:44 pm »
+1

I would really like to see a cogent defense of University and Golem over Alchemist.  Because I really can't see one at all at the moment.  Whatever problems Alchemist has, Golem and University have them worse.

Heh, this list pretty much matches mine perfectly, which is a first. Only Golem and Apothecary were switched, and they're the two I ummed and ahhed over the most anyway. Really, I think there are some very clear tiers of cards here:

Transmute, Phil Stone
Alchemist, Possession, University
Golem, Apothecary, Vineyard
Scrying Pool
Familiar

And really it's working out how to order those tiers that matters here. Okay, you can make a few arguments for shifting one or two cards around tiers, but I don't think there's much.

Swap Alchemist and Golem, and this is reasonable.  But you really, REALLY need to swap those two.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #14 on: August 13, 2012, 12:35:13 pm »
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I'm not very good with Golem, but I think I can aptly defend University over Alchemist. I do University is better, and I haven't always thought that. I used to be a big University naysayer.

The thing with University is that there are a growing number of cards that let you cheat and get more out of your Universities, like Watchtower, Highway, and Bridge. And then there are quite a few cards that actually do really love University, like Torturer, Governor, Stables, Laboratory. Basically, if your goal is to build a killer awesome engine, University is a good friend, and can get obscenely good depending on how much support there is.

Alchemist is also building for the mega-engine, but it seems to me that Alchemist needs better support. I'm not even considering Alchemist in a Province game without +buy. Okay, I'm probably not considering University either. But throw in supporting cards and University just jumps a couple strides ahead. And in that it's cheaper (less of a fear of not getting University early enough), and to me you just have a card that's better.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #15 on: August 13, 2012, 12:58:09 pm »
+1

I'm not very good with Golem, but I think I can aptly defend University over Alchemist. I do University is better, and I haven't always thought that. I used to be a big University naysayer.

The thing with University is that there are a growing number of cards that let you cheat and get more out of your Universities, like Watchtower, Highway, and Bridge. And then there are quite a few cards that actually do really love University, like Torturer, Governor, Stables, Laboratory. Basically, if your goal is to build a killer awesome engine, University is a good friend, and can get obscenely good depending on how much support there is.

Alchemist is also building for the mega-engine, but it seems to me that Alchemist needs better support. I'm not even considering Alchemist in a Province game without +buy. Okay, I'm probably not considering University either. But throw in supporting cards and University just jumps a couple strides ahead. And in that it's cheaper (less of a fear of not getting University early enough), and to me you just have a card that's better.

Isn't Torturer/Village better than Torturer/University?  I mean, sure, University is a village ergo it likes Torturer, but virtually every single other village loves it more, because every other village is faster (and most give +1 Card too).  University/Watchtower is pretty great, but $6 Actions are rare enough that I don't find cost reduction to really help University all that much.  You have to have a killer $6 Action, AND University, AND the cost reducer, and then you need to line up the latter two, which probably means trashing or draw as well, and at that point you're into pretty niche territory.  Bridge/Highway is a much better friend to Workshop/Ironworks, because it helps them get Victory cards and $5 Actions, which is much much much more common.

Yeah, Alchemist is for sure not going to be worth it in +Buy-less Province games.  But more games than not are going to have +Buy, or perhaps a substitute like Horn of Plenty or Outpost, both of which go *fantastic* with Alchemists.  And it's not quite true that +Buy and Colony are the only reasons to go mega-engine; strong attacking can sometimes do the same thing as well.

The gap between $2P and $3P is, admittedly, pretty sizable; that's really the only thing which gives me pause here.
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #16 on: August 13, 2012, 01:02:24 pm »
+1

Y NO LOVE 4 PHIL STONE? D:

I have several words for you: Vault/Black Market/Philosopher's Stone/Scrying Pool.  And +Buy.  "Wow, I just bought everything!"
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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #17 on: August 13, 2012, 01:06:58 pm »
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I said

Familiar > Scrying Pool > Vineyard > Apothecary > Golem > Alchemist > University > Philosopher's Stone > Possession > Transmute

I think alchemist and golem are traps in roughly the same games. Golem is more expensive (bad) but a lot better once it's in your deck (you need enough alchemists to consistently be able to play potion to be happy with them; on the other hand playing golem just three times total in a game is often decisive).

I have no idea why I said p-stone > possession. I must have just won one of those herbalist/p-stone beats sea hag games right before I made that list.
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Robz888

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #18 on: August 13, 2012, 01:09:01 pm »
0

I'm not very good with Golem, but I think I can aptly defend University over Alchemist. I do University is better, and I haven't always thought that. I used to be a big University naysayer.

The thing with University is that there are a growing number of cards that let you cheat and get more out of your Universities, like Watchtower, Highway, and Bridge. And then there are quite a few cards that actually do really love University, like Torturer, Governor, Stables, Laboratory. Basically, if your goal is to build a killer awesome engine, University is a good friend, and can get obscenely good depending on how much support there is.

Alchemist is also building for the mega-engine, but it seems to me that Alchemist needs better support. I'm not even considering Alchemist in a Province game without +buy. Okay, I'm probably not considering University either. But throw in supporting cards and University just jumps a couple strides ahead. And in that it's cheaper (less of a fear of not getting University early enough), and to me you just have a card that's better.

Isn't Torturer/Village better than Torturer/University?  I mean, sure, University is a village ergo it likes Torturer, but virtually every single other village loves it more, because every other village is faster (and most give +1 Card too).  University/Watchtower is pretty great, but $6 Actions are rare enough that I don't find cost reduction to really help University all that much.  You have to have a killer $6 Action, AND University, AND the cost reducer, and then you need to line up the latter two, which probably means trashing or draw as well, and at that point you're into pretty niche territory.  Bridge/Highway is a much better friend to Workshop/Ironworks, because it helps them get Victory cards and $5 Actions, which is much much much more common.

Yeah, Alchemist is for sure not going to be worth it in +Buy-less Province games.  But more games than not are going to have +Buy, or perhaps a substitute like Horn of Plenty or Outpost, both of which go *fantastic* with Alchemists.  And it's not quite true that +Buy and Colony are the only reasons to go mega-engine; strong attacking can sometimes do the same thing as well.

The gap between $2P and $3P is, admittedly, pretty sizable; that's really the only thing which gives me pause here.

But Alchemist relies on some trashing, too, in order to draw the Potion consistently.

Sure, you get the Attack faster if you just buy it. So yeah, you aren't going University to get Witch. But the better drawing Attacks like Torturer and Margrave do lend themselves to nice University engines, in my experience. Then there's Fairgrounds and Vineyards as reasons to go Universities. I don't know. I think University and Alchemist are similar in that they both need support to be worth the cost, they need + buy, possibly Colony, or some weird Victory card accumulation strategy (via Horn or Fairgrounds or something). But I tend to find the support existing for University more than Alchemist, and University is significantly cheaper, like you said. I could be wrong, it's just my feeling about them.

University also has much better synergy with other Alchemy cards, if that counts for anything. And it probably does, because other Alchemy cards are the number one reason to pick up a Potion in the first place.
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Eevee

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #19 on: August 13, 2012, 01:10:11 pm »
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Almost every time university and vineyards appear in the same kingdom, it's the dominant combo. I would definitely put university ahead of golem.
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Graystripe77

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #20 on: August 13, 2012, 01:12:31 pm »
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I didn't bother participating, but this is disappointing.
Mine would've been:
1. Apothecary - This card is pure awesome, why was it any lower than this?
2. Vineyard - This Alt VP strategy is soooooo fun and interesting to play. Plus it's powerful, too.
3. Golem - Big decks don't matter too much to Golem. Great in engines, too.
4. Scrying Pool - The massive draw given trashing, and sometimes even without..
5. Philosopher's Stone - Way underrated IMO. This card isn't the best, but it's my favorite.
6. Familiar - Cursing cantrip, but getting the 3p on turns 3-4... Eh.
7. University - A bit overrated, weaker than Village for at least until you have enough actions.
8. Possession - Good card, too annoying to get.
9. Alchemist - Sucks. 'Nuff said.
10. Transmute - May get better after Dark Ages, but I doubt it. I rarely (Never) need to buy it.
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Lekkit

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #21 on: August 13, 2012, 01:13:24 pm »
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The reason why Torturer likes University so much is because every time you play your village you get a new shiny Torturer.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #22 on: August 13, 2012, 01:37:17 pm »
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The reason why Torturer likes University so much is because every time you play your village you get a new shiny Torturer.

The reason Torturer likes every single other village more is you don't have to muck around with Potion, and will be able to buy a Torturer outright on Turns 3/4, which is very likely not going to happen if you open Potion/Silver.
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chwhite

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #23 on: August 13, 2012, 01:51:26 pm »
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I'm not very good with Golem, but I think I can aptly defend University over Alchemist. I do University is better, and I haven't always thought that. I used to be a big University naysayer.

The thing with University is that there are a growing number of cards that let you cheat and get more out of your Universities, like Watchtower, Highway, and Bridge. And then there are quite a few cards that actually do really love University, like Torturer, Governor, Stables, Laboratory. Basically, if your goal is to build a killer awesome engine, University is a good friend, and can get obscenely good depending on how much support there is.

Alchemist is also building for the mega-engine, but it seems to me that Alchemist needs better support. I'm not even considering Alchemist in a Province game without +buy. Okay, I'm probably not considering University either. But throw in supporting cards and University just jumps a couple strides ahead. And in that it's cheaper (less of a fear of not getting University early enough), and to me you just have a card that's better.

Isn't Torturer/Village better than Torturer/University?  I mean, sure, University is a village ergo it likes Torturer, but virtually every single other village loves it more, because every other village is faster (and most give +1 Card too).  University/Watchtower is pretty great, but $6 Actions are rare enough that I don't find cost reduction to really help University all that much.  You have to have a killer $6 Action, AND University, AND the cost reducer, and then you need to line up the latter two, which probably means trashing or draw as well, and at that point you're into pretty niche territory.  Bridge/Highway is a much better friend to Workshop/Ironworks, because it helps them get Victory cards and $5 Actions, which is much much much more common.

Yeah, Alchemist is for sure not going to be worth it in +Buy-less Province games.  But more games than not are going to have +Buy, or perhaps a substitute like Horn of Plenty or Outpost, both of which go *fantastic* with Alchemists.  And it's not quite true that +Buy and Colony are the only reasons to go mega-engine; strong attacking can sometimes do the same thing as well.

The gap between $2P and $3P is, admittedly, pretty sizable; that's really the only thing which gives me pause here.

But Alchemist relies on some trashing, too, in order to draw the Potion consistently.

Sure, you get the Attack faster if you just buy it. So yeah, you aren't going University to get Witch. But the better drawing Attacks like Torturer and Margrave do lend themselves to nice University engines, in my experience. Then there's Fairgrounds and Vineyards as reasons to go Universities. I don't know. I think University and Alchemist are similar in that they both need support to be worth the cost, they need + buy, possibly Colony, or some weird Victory card accumulation strategy (via Horn or Fairgrounds or something). But I tend to find the support existing for University more than Alchemist, and University is significantly cheaper, like you said. I could be wrong, it's just my feeling about them.

University also has much better synergy with other Alchemy cards, if that counts for anything. And it probably does, because other Alchemy cards are the number one reason to pick up a Potion in the first place.

I find Alchemist to be somewhat more tolerant of no-or-low-trash setups than University, actually.  But yes, it does prefer trashing as well.

Yeah, University/Vineyard is a killer duo, and it works very well with Apprentice and Scrying Pool too, sure.  But I don't think University actually combos all that well with the rest of Alchemy, since every other Potion card is a card University can't gain.  And it's not like Alchemist is bereft of Alchemy combos, either: it's Herbalist's second-best friend, after all.

I guess University over Alchemist is not implausible: the Vineyard combo is a favorite, and it's frequent enough especially with the "3 to 5" Alchemy rule that perhaps I should give it more weight.  But I do still think folks are underselling the frequency with which Alchemist engines are still viable, and overselling the extent to which it's a trap.  Whereas Golem's trappiness has really been flying under the radar- it's pretty darn rare these days for me to go Potion for the sole purpose of Golem, but it's not like anyone's pointing that out all the time.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2012, 01:58:05 pm by chwhite »
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O

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Re: The Best Dominion Cards List 2012 Ed.2: Potion cost cards
« Reply #24 on: August 13, 2012, 02:41:30 pm »
+1

Erm.. Possession is still a must buy on like 25% of boards, and a possible buy on another 15%. It's no great shakes but clearly outclasses Alchemist/Golem.

It's mostly just mechanic-hatred that has people voting it so low.
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