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Author Topic: Interview with Donald X.  (Read 841721 times)

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Ozle

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1100 on: March 24, 2014, 08:33:15 am »
0

What?
No love for ultima v?
I thought it was way better than VI or IV.
I must have spent years of my childhood on that, just wandering around, killing headless and the like.

Best open world game ever made, you could go anywhere and talk to anybody!


Did you ever play Ultima Online? That's my favourite game ever.
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NoMoreFun

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1101 on: March 24, 2014, 10:59:11 am »
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Before Guilds, all of the cursers fit the theme (or at least a sub-theme) of their respective expansions.  Cultist sits in as the "curser" for Dark Ages.

Soothsayer breaks the mold.  Were all the previous examples just happy coincidences?  Was it just that Soothsayer play-tested better than any curser with coin tokens or overpay?
It was just a coincidence. Or, if you like, a natural consequence of "each other player gains a Curse" being simple, every set wanting simple on-theme cards, and no set wanting too many ways to give out Curses.

Did you ever consider and/or test "Gain a Gold. Each other player gains a Curse. Each player who did takes a Coin Token."
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1102 on: March 24, 2014, 02:54:05 pm »
0

What?
No love for ultima v?
I thought it was way better than VI or IV.
I must have spent years of my childhood on that, just wandering around, killing headless and the like.

Best open world game ever made, you could go anywhere and talk to anybody!


Did you ever play Ultima Online? That's my favourite game ever.
The best part of Ultima V was that you could take out the disk, and put in the underworld disk, and walk a little, and suddenly you'd be in the underworld.

I never played Ultima Online. The Worlds of Ultima games - Martian Dreams and Savage Empires - sounded great but were not so hot.

A friend hacked Ultima IV and I made a new adventure/world for it: Quest of the Badvatar. I made the dungeons overhead like they did in Ultima VI, added items, fixed the few bugs I found (you could get lots of money by not being able to afford food in taverns - I am guessing they didn't find it because who was ever buying that instead of rations). It is now just a thing I can picture in my head.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1103 on: March 24, 2014, 02:57:20 pm »
+2

Did you ever consider and/or test "Gain a Gold. Each other player gains a Curse. Each player who did takes a Coin Token."
The first version in Guilds is like the published version except there's no "if" (they get the card when the Curses run out). And I didn't do coin tokens prior to Guilds, so no.

There were ways to give other players coin tokens, but no-one ever wanted them. Sometimes people are stingy.
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AHoppy

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1104 on: March 24, 2014, 04:24:54 pm »
+3

Qvist draws up rankings for all the cards every year, do you ever look at those rankings, and have you ever created your own rankings?

LastFootnote

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1105 on: March 24, 2014, 04:34:59 pm »
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I was a bit surprised that Guilds didn't have a Reaction that you could discard for Coin tokens. Normally you can't have reactions that give money, but tokens seemed like an elegant way to do that. Then again, maybe discarding a card for 2 Coin tokens is too strong and I can't see any other number working out.

Anyhow, did you ever consider a Reaction for Guilds? The outtakes don't list one.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1106 on: March 24, 2014, 04:54:32 pm »
0

Qvist draws up rankings for all the cards every year, do you ever look at those rankings, and have you ever created your own rankings?
I posted in one of the threads, which is to say, yes I have looked at those rankings. I have not ranked all the cards myself.
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AHoppy

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1107 on: March 24, 2014, 04:56:14 pm »
0

Qvist draws up rankings for all the cards every year, do you ever look at those rankings, and have you ever created your own rankings?
I posted in one of the threads, which is to say, yes I have looked at those rankings. I have not ranked all the cards myself.
I probably wouldn't want you to tell us the rankings if you did...   Would probably just influence how I think about the cards too much

Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1108 on: March 24, 2014, 05:05:41 pm »
+7

I was a bit surprised that Guilds didn't have a Reaction that you could discard for Coin tokens. Normally you can't have reactions that give money, but tokens seemed like an elegant way to do that. Then again, maybe discarding a card for 2 Coin tokens is too strong and I can't see any other number working out.

Anyhow, did you ever consider a Reaction for Guilds? The outtakes don't list one.
Yes, coin token reactions are on the ideas list in four similar forms - reaction gets you a coin token (probably Horse Traders style), reaction either gets you a coin token or lets you pay one to moat, reaction gets you both coin token and moating, action makes coin tokens and reaction lets you pay coin token to moat. I don't think I ever tried them. I don't think I tried any reactions for Guilds but there are others in the file.
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NoMoreFun

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1109 on: March 24, 2014, 05:45:33 pm »
0

To quote you from earlier:

Similar to the above -- do you ever look at fan cards?  If so, do you have a favourite?
I don't usually look at them, because 1) I don't want people feeling like I'm taking their ideas, which probably I had years ago, not because I am amazing but because the obvious ideas are obvious and I had a big head start; and 2) the cards that aren't in sets already are usually awful, nonstop things I wouldn't do that are boring and redundant or else obviously bad for the game in some way, and if it's not obvious then I already tried them and found out the hard way. At best they are things I'm already doing; none of it is good reading.

However you have stated here that there are ideas like reactions that give coin tokens which you didn't even try. You also make this statement about fan cards without ever having seen any.

Now that you have released everything (except the promo card this year), will you take a look at fan cards?
« Last Edit: March 24, 2014, 05:51:23 pm by NoMoreFun »
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LastFootnote

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1110 on: March 24, 2014, 05:58:40 pm »
+13

To quote you from earlier:

Similar to the above -- do you ever look at fan cards?  If so, do you have a favourite?
I don't usually look at them, because 1) I don't want people feeling like I'm taking their ideas, which probably I had years ago, not because I am amazing but because the obvious ideas are obvious and I had a big head start; and 2) the cards that aren't in sets already are usually awful, nonstop things I wouldn't do that are boring and redundant or else obviously bad for the game in some way, and if it's not obvious then I already tried them and found out the hard way. At best they are things I'm already doing; none of it is good reading.

However you have stated here that there are ideas like reactions that give coin tokens which you didn't even try. You also make this statement about fan cards without ever having seen any.

Now that you have released everything (except the promo card this year), will you take a look at fan cards?

Dang, dude. I think that topic has been beaten to death. I just appreciate Donald explaining if Coin token Reactions were on the list of ideas. I'm guessing if Guilds had been a full-sized set, those Coin token Reactions would have been tested.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1111 on: March 24, 2014, 08:05:05 pm »
+2

To quote you from earlier:

Similar to the above -- do you ever look at fan cards?  If so, do you have a favourite?
I don't usually look at them, because 1) I don't want people feeling like I'm taking their ideas, which probably I had years ago, not because I am amazing but because the obvious ideas are obvious and I had a big head start; and 2) the cards that aren't in sets already are usually awful, nonstop things I wouldn't do that are boring and redundant or else obviously bad for the game in some way, and if it's not obvious then I already tried them and found out the hard way. At best they are things I'm already doing; none of it is good reading.

However you have stated here that there are ideas like reactions that give coin tokens which you didn't even try. You also make this statement about fan cards without ever having seen any.

Now that you have released everything (except the promo card this year), will you take a look at fan cards?
In fact you are quoting me saying "I don't usually look at them," which is not the same as "I never do;" I go on in that post to specifically look at some; and at the end of that post I cite two favorite fan cards. So, you are way off there.

Here I am specifically not committing to there never being more expansions, so that's a clean sweep for you: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=73.0
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1112 on: March 24, 2014, 08:07:47 pm »
+3

Dang, dude. I think that topic has been beaten to death. I just appreciate Donald explaining if Coin token Reactions were on the list of ideas. I'm guessing if Guilds had been a full-sized set, those Coin token Reactions would have been tested.
I certainly would have tried some kind of reaction for a full set. People like reactions. But space was limited and variations on "it's like Horse Traders but you get a coin token" didn't wow me enough to make it to the table.
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Trogdor the Burninator

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1113 on: March 25, 2014, 02:57:11 pm »
0

Say you make another full expansion, what sorts of ideas will you explore with that? (Sorry if this has been asked already)
I'd be interested to know if you ever had any ideas for an entirely new type of card along the way (sort of like how Duration cards were a new kind of action card in Seaside when it came out), and if you were to make another full expansion, would you try making a new type of action card?
(sorry this is rather weirdly worded)
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1114 on: March 25, 2014, 04:24:33 pm »
+6

Say you make another full expansion, what sorts of ideas will you explore with that? (Sorry if this has been asked already)
I'd be interested to know if you ever had any ideas for an entirely new type of card along the way (sort of like how Duration cards were a new kind of action card in Seaside when it came out), and if you were to make another full expansion, would you try making a new type of action card?
(sorry this is rather weirdly worded)
Probably it's best to keep any new things a secret! I guess I can say, a new expansion would explore my best ideas, the ones that seemed good. That sort of idea.

Having a new frame makes something more exciting than it is, I learned this from Magic. Duration cards didn't need a frame or type, and didn't always have it; they got the frame to make it easier to remember not to discard them, and the type because that's the way frames work in Dominion, they correspond to types. When-gain could have had a new frame; it would have been very mildly helpful and I bet some players would have liked it. It wasn't on the table because of Mint.

To the degree that "duration" is a new type, sure, any new expansion could have something like that. I would also consider revisiting duration cards themselves; the people excited by a 9th Dominion expansion would probably be happy to hear it had new duration cards.
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Nik

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1115 on: March 25, 2014, 06:50:26 pm »
0

I have three questions:
1. What do you think about Scout, Chancellor, Secret Chamber,and the other 'worst' cards in Dominion?
2. Why did you name Harem 'Harem?' Did anybody ever question why it was called that?
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1116 on: March 25, 2014, 07:22:42 pm »
+3

I have three questions:
1. What do you think about Scout, Chancellor, Secret Chamber,and the other 'worst' cards in Dominion?
2. Why did you name Harem 'Harem?' Did anybody ever question why it was called that?
I would replace/improve duds if I were making those sets today. They don't really sink the game though - people buy Scout, it sounds like it could come in handy. Having things you learn are bad can contribute gameplay and good times; it's certainly not strictly bad. But ideally the weakest cards are sometimes good, to improve the game for experienced players. It's fun to sometimes win the game with a weak card and well there should only be a few of those cards and they should only be so weak.

Secret Chamber is a special case on that list in that it confuses people. In this case the card isn't worth the confusion.

I originally referred to the game as Castle Builder. The cards were things in castles. Harems are such a thing. So I had a Harem card. I personally have questioned why it's called that, repeatedly, but it's not something that came up while working on the set, and it's not something people send in letters about.
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Polk5440

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1117 on: March 26, 2014, 05:37:23 pm »
+4

Donald, what does a typical playtesting session run by you look like?

(Do you explain to playtesters what you are looking for before playing or just let them play? Do you have playtesters fill out a detailed "Donald X. Exit Survey" after, or have them verbally give you their playing impressions?)
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tastor

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1118 on: March 26, 2014, 06:03:59 pm »
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To the degree that "duration" is a new type, sure, any new expansion could have something like that. I would also consider revisiting duration cards themselves; the people excited by a 9th Dominion expansion would probably be happy to hear it had new duration cards.

So this is in relation to your talk about the possibility of doing more duration cards (until Jay suggested something new), as well as your detailed explanation of the new VP card possibilities.

Would you ever consider doing more VP token cards as an alternative/supplement to more VP cards? They seem to fill the role of providing new paths to victory without really clashing with other stuff (for example: if Duke and Feodum were in the same set it would seem redundant, but you have 3 VP token cards in a single set without them really encroaching on each other). It seems like all of the "classic" things you can do with VP tokens were used, but especially with new mechanics like overpay and on-trash that there are some possibilities for new things.

It does have the duration problem of "isn't a new thing better", but it seems to provide new routes for "how do we create different victory paths since all the classic VP cards are in sets".
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1119 on: March 26, 2014, 06:15:21 pm »
+6

Donald, what does a typical playtesting session run by you look like?

(Do you explain to playtesters what you are looking for before playing or just let them play? Do you have playtesters fill out a detailed "Donald X. Exit Survey" after, or have them verbally give you their playing impressions?)
IRL I would deal out 5 cards from the set being tested, and 5 from some other set (sometimes a different ratio for small sets). Sometimes instead it would be all 10 from the set being tested. After each game I would replace just 4 cards, rotating which slots changed. Sometimes a particular card would need testing and I'd just make sure that was out. Sometimes a particular card would need changing and I'd say "this game this costs $6" (usually marked with dice) or sometimes, with experienced players only, "this game let's try some new thing I haven't printed out yet, it's a treasure costing $5 so we'll use Venture to represent it."

Online we would typically play, 5 cards from the new set, 5 random cards from all sets. Sometimes a card would need focused testing and it might be, this card plus 9 random cards. There was even more focused testing; Crossroads, Margrave, and 8 cards from Hinterlands. We tested recommended sets.

Sometimes you would be limited as to what you bought. This game, these two players can't buy this card, these two players have to buy it (some players are awful at having to buy something so I leaned towards that slot). Maybe we decide after the opening split in case the card costs $4 and someone has $5/$2. I've specifically tested openings; okay you get $5/$2 and open Soothsayer.

It's possible we sit there chatting about the game afterwards, or just move on to the next one. I ask people what they think. I say what I think. For online players, there was a forum, and we would talk about whatever there was to talk about, and sometimes I would say, could everyone say a few words about every card. We would post game results and say a few words; lots of games happened that I wasn't in.

With new players I am often just looking at, what did they ask questions about; what has to go in the FAQ, what should be reworded. What did they enjoy.
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eHalcyon

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1120 on: March 26, 2014, 06:17:42 pm »
0

It does have the duration problem of "isn't a new thing better", but it seems to provide new routes for "how do we create different victory paths since all the classic VP cards are in sets".

I think the bigger problem is that they would have to provide more tokens in the book, for the people who have not already picked up Prosperity.

OTOH, they could just indicate that it's an expansion to an expansion or something.
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Ozle

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1121 on: March 26, 2014, 06:19:28 pm »
+2

Everybodies reading this and taking away there is a new set coming right?
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1122 on: March 26, 2014, 06:21:26 pm »
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So this is in relation to your talk about the possibility of doing more duration cards (until Jay suggested something new), as well as your detailed explanation of the new VP card possibilities.

Would you ever consider doing more VP token cards as an alternative/supplement to more VP cards? They seem to fill the role of providing new paths to victory without really clashing with other stuff (for example: if Duke and Feodum were in the same set it would seem redundant, but you have 3 VP token cards in a single set without them really encroaching on each other). It seems like all of the "classic" things you can do with VP tokens were used, but especially with new mechanics like overpay and on-trash that there are some possibilities for new things.

It does have the duration problem of "isn't a new thing better", but it seems to provide new routes for "how do we create different victory paths since all the classic VP cards are in sets".
VP tokens aren't really a great wellspring of potential cards; you have to worry about "what if we just sit there making VP tokens, never ending the game." You can do various things that I didn't do that don't have that problem; I am just saying, it's not fantastic.

VP tokens require including VP tokens. It's a plus and a minus but more a minus. Hinterlands isn't much cheaper than Seaside but it's still cheaper. Tokens in general are a good thing to look at for an easy way to get new simple cards (note that I went straight to tokens when I needed to make an extra set, Guilds). I already did VP tokens so I would lean towards something else.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1123 on: March 26, 2014, 06:25:41 pm »
0

OTOH, they could just indicate that it's an expansion to an expansion or something.
I think it's obv. not great to limit your audience like that, although sometimes people do it. We would just include VP tokens if we wanted them that badly.

This is a thing about the fabled Treasure Chest concept. I don't think we would have a potion-coster without potions; thus I don't think we'd have a potion-coster. I don't think we would have a looter with no Ruins. I don't think we'd use VP tokens or coin tokens without providing them. Then you realize that a card with the variety thing from Cornucopia doesn't actually tie into Cornucopia so much, and so the answer really is that if I did a Treasure Chest I might just limit it to more cards for the large sets. But even without requiring components you might not have, it still wouldn't be as good as doing a new thing.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #1124 on: March 26, 2014, 06:27:22 pm »
0

Everybodies reading this and taking away there is a new set coming right?
I have not changed my stance that doing a spin-off would be better. I am constantly playtesting stuff; it just isn't Dominion expansions.
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