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Author Topic: Interview with Donald X.  (Read 791724 times)

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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4325 on: July 21, 2018, 03:14:55 am »
+8

I do not want to see them. You can share them with other people in the variants forum J Reggie linked to, or on reddit or BGG or elsewhere. I specifically do not go to the variants forum, and all fan-made cards posted on dominionstrategy should go there and nowhere else.

So this response doesn't sound harsh and villain-spawning like Mr. Incredible's, I'll offer this additional perspective that might help. In any creative endeavor, it can be hard to trace where an idea truly originated. If Donald X. read the variants forum, there would always be a question of whether some future canon Dominion card was inspired by something he read there without him realizing it. I'm sure you'd still be honored if that happened even without any actual recognition, but others might be disappointed that he forgot. In the extreme, someone could accuse Donald X. of ripping off their variant with his new expansion, which is not the kind of publicity he wants.

I think we all have to remember that we have different roles here. For Donald X., as accessible as he is to us here, Dominion is not just something he does for fun; it's a job for him. Like anyone, he wants to do his job well, and that involves being responsible about the origins of ideas that he will profit off of. Hence the firewall keeping the variants and fan cards in that subforum, which allows him to roam freely about these discussion boards and participate in our discussions about his game.
And I mean, I've had the same experience from the other side. Years ago I made a homemade Netrunner expansion. Then FFG got the rights to Netrunner and started making new products. I was the Dominion guy, and FFG was publishing one of my games too. I said hey, I have a Netrunner expansion. They weren't interested in seeing it. They had their own Netrunner cards to make.
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greybirdofprey

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4326 on: July 21, 2018, 10:14:14 am »
0

Do you playtest digitally or physically?

What art do you use on cards when playtesting?
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crj

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4327 on: July 21, 2018, 11:36:48 am »
0

This article shows what his prototype cards look like. Plenty of random stuff off Google image searches, not all of it entirely sensible.

On the other question, I gather he used to use Isotropic a lot for playtesting, even after it stopped being available to the general public because of commercial online offerings, but the author of Isotropic finally packed it in before Nocturne so it got rather less online playtesting, mainly via beta implementations of the new expansion on dominion.games late on in development.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4328 on: July 21, 2018, 02:19:34 pm »
+4

Do you playtest digitally or physically?

What art do you use on cards when playtesting?
Both; in the early days I had a program I wrote, then Doug Z. made isotropic.

I google up images, all of them entirely sensible. Mostly the same images were used in isotropic, so many people are familiar with the pre-Dark Ages ones.

The physical version of Nocturne was not playtested on dominion.games, it was already done; all that was playtested there was the online functionality.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4329 on: September 19, 2018, 07:06:37 pm »
+1

Happy 20,000th respect, Donald!

It seems like recent Dominion expansions have 1 splashy mechanic and a bunch of other workhorse ones. (For example, Empires has the super splashy Landmarks, while debt, split piles, VP tokens, and Events are more workhorse-y.) But what would you say Nocturne's splashy mechanic be?
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4330 on: September 19, 2018, 07:21:39 pm »
+6

Happy 20,000th respect, Donald!
And they said that I was mad! Soon, all the respect will be mine!

It seems like recent Dominion expansions have 1 splashy mechanic and a bunch of other workhorse ones. (For example, Empires has the super splashy Landmarks, while debt, split piles, VP tokens, and Events are more workhorse-y.) But what would you say Nocturne's splashy mechanic be?
I'm never thinking of it like that. All of the mechanics are trying to be great things to do. I would say all of those things you listed for Empires are splashy. The workhorses are like "there have to be some new villages, some new draw etc.," but those new villages etc. are still trying to be awesome.

Everything in Nocturne is splashy. Which thing stands out the most depends on who you are.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4331 on: September 20, 2018, 12:44:06 am »
0

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4332 on: September 20, 2018, 02:09:47 am »
+10

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
It depends on the mechanic - does it make you reach for the rulebook or not - but yes. I think the recent expansions have gotten too complex. I always cite how Vampire makes you read 18 cards to know the full story.

As you will see, despite having 4 mechanics, Renaissance is much simpler.
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vishwathg

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4333 on: September 20, 2018, 01:10:47 pm »
0

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
It depends on the mechanic - does it make you reach for the rulebook or not - but yes. I think the recent expansions have gotten too complex. I always cite how Vampire makes you read 18 cards to know the full story.

As you will see, despite having 4 mechanics, Renaissance is much simpler.

18? I count only 14 (card-shaped things)...What are the other 4?
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 01:21:15 pm by vishwathg »
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4334 on: September 20, 2018, 01:43:03 pm »
+3

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
It depends on the mechanic - does it make you reach for the rulebook or not - but yes. I think the recent expansions have gotten too complex. I always cite how Vampire makes you read 18 cards to know the full story.

As you will see, despite having 4 mechanics, Renaissance is much simpler.

18? I count only 14 (card-shaped things)...What are the other 4?

Deluded, Envious, Miserable and Twice Miserable. Alternatively, Deluded/Envious, Miserable/Twice Miserable, Curse and Copper.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4335 on: September 20, 2018, 01:58:56 pm »
+1

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
It depends on the mechanic - does it make you reach for the rulebook or not - but yes. I think the recent expansions have gotten too complex. I always cite how Vampire makes you read 18 cards to know the full story.

As you will see, despite having 4 mechanics, Renaissance is much simpler.

18? I count only 14 (card-shaped things)...What are the other 4?

Deluded, Envious, Miserable and Twice Miserable. Alternatively, Deluded/Envious, Miserable/Twice Miserable, Curse and Copper.

...And I thought Donald was exaggerating.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4336 on: September 20, 2018, 02:25:32 pm »
+1

Leprechaun and Tormentor share Vampire's status in also counting the 12 Hexes, 4 associated States, themselves, and a non-Supply card.
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markusin

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4337 on: September 20, 2018, 02:26:21 pm »
0

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
It depends on the mechanic - does it make you reach for the rulebook or not - but yes. I think the recent expansions have gotten too complex. I always cite how Vampire makes you read 18 cards to know the full story.

As you will see, despite having 4 mechanics, Renaissance is much simpler.

18? I count only 14 (card-shaped things)...What are the other 4?

Deluded, Envious, Miserable and Twice Miserable. Alternatively, Deluded/Envious, Miserable/Twice Miserable, Curse and Copper.

...And I thought Donald was exaggerating.

That means Hexes by themselves make you read 16 cards. So Vampire, Tormentor, and Skulk all make you read 18 cards. Leprechaun sits at 19.

Edit:
Leprechaun and Tormentor share Vampire's status in also counting the 12 Hexes, 4 associated States, themselves, and a non-Supply card.

If you count Gold as a different card to read, Skulk also shares Vampire's status and Leprechaun surpasses it.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 02:27:24 pm by markusin »
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GendoIkari

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4338 on: September 20, 2018, 02:46:54 pm »
+2

Did you ever worry that the recent expansions have been trying to do too many new things at once? Up through guilds, each expansion had one or two mechanical themes, then adventures comes along with 4 (Events, reserves, player tokens, travelers. Not counting durations, as they're pretty much standard now), empires with 5 (Events, Landmarks, Debt, VP chips, Split piles), and Nocturne with 5 (Nights, non-supply piles, Boons/hexes, Heirlooms, states)
It depends on the mechanic - does it make you reach for the rulebook or not - but yes. I think the recent expansions have gotten too complex. I always cite how Vampire makes you read 18 cards to know the full story.

As you will see, despite having 4 mechanics, Renaissance is much simpler.

18? I count only 14 (card-shaped things)...What are the other 4?

Deluded, Envious, Miserable and Twice Miserable. Alternatively, Deluded/Envious, Miserable/Twice Miserable, Curse and Copper.

...And I thought Donald was exaggerating.

That means Hexes by themselves make you read 16 cards. So Vampire, Tormentor, and Skulk all make you read 18 cards. Leprechaun sits at 19.

Edit:
Leprechaun and Tormentor share Vampire's status in also counting the 12 Hexes, 4 associated States, themselves, and a non-Supply card.

If you count Gold as a different card to read, Skulk also shares Vampire's status and Leprechaun surpasses it.

"Gain a card costing up to " makes you read a large number of cards from the supply also. But that's been around since Feast and Workshop.
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4339 on: September 20, 2018, 05:26:03 pm »
+2

If you count Gold as a different card to read, Skulk also shares Vampire's status and Leprechaun surpasses it.

"Gain a card costing up to " makes you read a large number of cards from the supply also. But that's been around since Feast and Workshop.
You already have to read the supply. And obv. Gold doesn't count, everyone knows what Gold does.

It's no joke about Vampire. People new to the set will turn over a Hex, and the game stops, everyone has to process it, then do it. Then next turn it's another Hex. The Boons avoid this by mostly being really simple, but the Hexes are attacks.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4340 on: September 20, 2018, 09:25:26 pm »
0

At least Nocturne doesn’t have the version of Tormentor that flipped two Hexes and let each opponent choose one to receive.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4341 on: September 20, 2018, 10:36:11 pm »
0

At least Nocturne doesn’t have the version of Tormentor that flipped two Hexes and let each opponent choose one to receive.

God help us all
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4342 on: September 20, 2018, 10:39:14 pm »
+4

At least Nocturne doesn’t have the version of Tormentor that flipped two Hexes and let each opponent choose one to receive.

See, that would have actually been flavorful as a "torment".  But yes, probably for the best overall.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4343 on: September 20, 2018, 11:02:14 pm »
0

So let's say, hypothetically, you decided that boons and/or hexes needed to be in another set sometime in the future. Would you just print the existing ones again, or would you come up with new ones? And, if the latter, how would they work alongside the ones from Nocturne?
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4344 on: September 21, 2018, 03:20:34 am »
+3

So let's say, hypothetically, you decided that boons and/or hexes needed to be in another set sometime in the future. Would you just print the existing ones again, or would you come up with new ones? And, if the latter, how would they work alongside the ones from Nocturne?
Today I wouldn't do Hexes. They are just too complex for too many players. Like I said, the game stops.

It was hard getting that set of Boons. If I wanted to revisit them, I suspect I would just reprint them. Conceivably the set could have a mechanic that lent itself to adding a Boon, e.g. VP tokens. But we would still need to reprint all the old Boons, it's not like the set would have new mechanics that generated 12 new Boons. So if somehow there was a new Boon, it would just be, if you're playing with Nocturne, well now there are 13 Boons there too.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4345 on: September 25, 2018, 10:46:58 am »
+1

So, Coin of the Realm vs Villagers. They both save actions for later. I'm not really sure what my question is...

Could you just explain your design thoughts on this? If you were making CotR today, would it just be a Villagers card, or is it different enough to warrant being a Treasure-Reserve?
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4346 on: September 25, 2018, 12:59:45 pm »
0

So, Coin of the Realm vs Villagers. They both save actions for later. I'm not really sure what my question is...

Could you just explain your design thoughts on this? If you were making CotR today, would it just be a Villagers card, or is it different enough to warrant being a Treasure-Reserve?

I feel like the difference of not being able to save up more than 1 action per card is a sufficient difference. (Along with it staying out of your deck until you use it).
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4347 on: September 25, 2018, 01:22:12 pm »
0

So, Coin of the Realm vs Villagers. They both save actions for later. I'm not really sure what my question is...

Could you just explain your design thoughts on this? If you were making CotR today, would it just be a Villagers card, or is it different enough to warrant being a Treasure-Reserve?

I feel like the difference of not being able to save up more than 1 action per card is a sufficient difference. (Along with it staying out of your deck until you use it).

You mean 2 Actions per card. Coin of the Realm gives +2 Actions.
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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4348 on: September 25, 2018, 01:57:03 pm »
+1

So, Coin of the Realm vs Villagers. They both save actions for later. I'm not really sure what my question is...

Could you just explain your design thoughts on this? If you were making CotR today, would it just be a Villagers card, or is it different enough to warrant being a Treasure-Reserve?

I feel like the difference of not being able to save up more than 1 action per card is a sufficient difference. (Along with it staying out of your deck until you use it).

You mean 2 Actions per card. Coin of the Realm gives +2 Actions.

What I really mean is 1 use per card; it just so happens that the use gets you 2 actions (but they have to be redeemed at the same time).
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Donald X.

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Re: Interview with Donald X.
« Reply #4349 on: September 25, 2018, 05:54:25 pm »
+8

So, Coin of the Realm vs Villagers. They both save actions for later. I'm not really sure what my question is...

Could you just explain your design thoughts on this? If you were making CotR today, would it just be a Villagers card, or is it different enough to warrant being a Treasure-Reserve?
Possibly what you're looking for is: I wasn't going to let Coin of the Realm stop me from doing a good mechanic.

If Reserve cards had come in a later expansion than Villagers, Coin of the Realm wouldn't have been so compelling to do, in the same way that there isn't a Reserve card that's like Coffers tokens.
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