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Author Topic: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?  (Read 3142 times)

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Kahryl

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Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« on: September 24, 2011, 06:19:12 pm »
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Compare lighthouse to silver to which it is very similar:

1.  Costs $2 instead of $3 - big advantage
2.  Played during action phase so it combos like crazy with "draw up to x" cards like minion, watchtower, library - big advantage
3.  Makes you completely immune to attack - wtf???
4.  Delays half the income by one turn.  That's supposed to balance out the above.. but in practice I don't find it hurting at all.  In fact it helps a little bit - by smoothing out your income it delays the need for +buy.  I'd rather have $6/$6 turns than one dead turn and another with $12 where I waste a big chunk of my money.

I just played a board involving Minion and Lighthouse.  I pretended there was nothing but those two cards and Province and just robotically purchased the highest one I could each turn.  My opponent, who was of the ridiculous opinion that other cards matter, got crushed.  It was the least fun Dominion game I ever won.
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DStu

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2011, 06:23:05 pm »
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Yes, Lighthouse is quite strong, but you forgot
5) is much more likely to miss a shuffle.

And it is not very fair to take Minion/Lighthouse and complain that you don't buy anything but Minions and Lighthouses, as without the LH, the chances are good that you wont have bought anything besinde Minions alone...
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Jack Rudd

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2011, 07:09:38 pm »
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Lighthouse/Minion is a good combo. Lighthouse is strong in tableaux where there are plentiful Attacks and decks get cycled through a lot; Minion is an Attack that cycles decks a lot. Minion is strong in combination with cards that give +Action and either +Coin or +Buy; Lighthouse is a card that gives +Action and +Coin. This does not mean either card is stupidly overpowered in itself.
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rinkworks

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2011, 07:17:40 pm »
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I'm not so sure smoothing out the income is generally a good thing.  True, in the absence of +Buys, you'd rather have $6/$6 than $12/-, but I'm not sure that's a realistic example of Lighthouse's effect.  In any case, you'd usually rather have one $6 turn than two $3 turns.  And probably $8 over two $4 turns.  Heck, you'd even rather have the usually-undesirable $7 turn than $4/$3.

But I agree that Lighthouse is a terrific card for its cost.  No question.
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ftl

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2011, 09:03:00 pm »
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I just played a board involving Minion and Lighthouse.  I pretended there was nothing but those two cards and Province and just robotically purchased the highest one I could each turn.  My opponent, who was of the ridiculous opinion that other cards matter, got crushed.  It was the least fun Dominion game I ever won.

Minion by itself is just that good. I've won games buying nothing but Minion and Province. (Though not against people who are experienced, because in that case if it's a board like that they'd probably contest me for minions, and 5 minions isn't enough so other cards become more important.)

Minion works especially well with non-terminals that give you coin. Festival, market, peddler, fishing village, and yes, lighthouse - all those would work *great* paired with minion.

I think you're seeing the amazingness of minion rather than the amazingness of lighthouse. Lighthouse is quite good, but it only seems broken like that when it's in combination with either minion or library (or watchtower).

I once had a game where I think I had  bought nothing costing 5 or more besides 5 colonies. (I played a fishing village/lighthouse/watchtower engine, set up by I-don't-remember-what (ironworks or talismans?) ).

So yes, maybe on that board you played, lighthouse-minion was the dominant strategy, and you saw that and your opponent didn't. So what? Many boards have a dominant strategy. BM-smithy or BM-envoy dominate things when there's nothing better around. Minion is one of those cards that can make a strategy on its own, especially when it has a good support card around.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2011, 09:07:32 pm by ftl »
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DG

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2011, 09:53:27 pm »
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Technically, the moat provides better defence. It provides defence sooner, before your turn. You don't have to reveal it. You don't have play it. Your opponent doesn't know whether it's worth playing an attack card or not. Most of the time I'd guess that the defence from the lighthouse is good enough and it's often easier to play a lighthouse in your turn than ensure you have a moat in hand next turn.


I think in the other thread someone mentioned that you can't overbuy lighthouses. Well you certainly can. Building up income with lighthouses can be fatally slow. Playing lighthouses each turn could leave you with a smaller hand to do anything else, so that cards like warehouses and remakes will perform badly.
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Epoch

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2011, 10:37:14 pm »
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Technically, the moat provides better defence. It provides defence sooner, before your turn. You don't have to reveal it. You don't have play it. Your opponent doesn't know whether it's worth playing an attack card or not. Most of the time I'd guess that the defence from the lighthouse is good enough and it's often easier to play a lighthouse in your turn than ensure you have a moat in hand next turn.

The big advantage to Lighthouse over Moat is that you can actually manipulate the probability of playing Lighthouse, by handsize (or cycling, as in the case of Minion).

If you're all just drawing 5 card hands turn after turn, those things that you said above are all true.  But if you're drawing 10 cards per turn, you'd MUCH rather have Lighthouse than Moat, since Moat only gives you its defense if you draw it before your opponent's turn, while any time you draw Lighthouse (unless you draw it dead), you can use it.

In practice, Lighthouse is much better in engine decks than Moat.  MUCH better.

EDIT:  I realize (now) that this is what you were saying with "it's often easier to play a lighthouse in your turn than ensure you have a moat in hand next turn."  But I think you undersell that as an advantage to the lighthouse.
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rinkworks

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2011, 10:43:40 pm »
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Lighthouse also makes a great Bane card.  Moat, not so much.  :-)

(Not that this has a great deal to do with the discussion at hand.  I'm just amused when one or the other of those cards is the Bane card.)
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Kahryl

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #8 on: September 25, 2011, 12:08:55 am »
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I know minion is a great card but the obvious difficulty with setting up Minion decks is you can't always get to $5 per turn early on.

Lighthouse erases that problem because minions with lighthouses are as good as all minions.

Lighthouse just seems to have no real weaknesses whether minions are around or not.. under what conditions would you buy a silver with $3 over a lighthouse??
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ftl

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #9 on: September 25, 2011, 01:59:47 am »
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A money-based deck where you're unlikely to have a village and likely to end a turn with a smithy or equivalent, and are worried about drawing the lighthouse dead. (BM-envoy or BM-smithy become a lot worse when you add in lighthouses!)

A board where there's no attack worth defending against, and so the harm is in missing reshuffles.
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rinkworks

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #10 on: September 25, 2011, 08:08:19 am »
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You also have to consider that, on the first turn, Lighthouse is basically a Copper.  They take up a card slot and only provide $1 at that point.  The next-turn benefit is a lot better (no lost card slot), but I still only buy a Lighthouse (except when I might need its defense capabilities) at $2 and prefer Silver at $3.  The reason is that my ultimate target is neither but rather Gold.  With three Silvers in one hand (or more likely one or two Silvers and several of my starting Coppers), I can have a Gold.  With only Lighthouses and my starting Copper, I cannot get a Gold until the turn after I play Lighthouse(s), and even then I need the right confluence of Lighthouses in one turn and Lighthouses/Coppers in the next.

And then once I've got the Gold, my deck as a whole still isn't as good, because I've probably diluted it with more Lighthouses than I would have with Silvers to get to that point.

Again, not a Lighthouse hater.  I love the card.  It's just not Silver.  (And vice versa, I suppose.)
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Fangz

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #11 on: September 25, 2011, 08:51:26 am »
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Compare lighthouse to silver to which it is very similar:

1.  Costs $2 instead of $3 - big advantage
2.  Played during action phase so it combos like crazy with "draw up to x" cards like minion, watchtower, library - big advantage
3.  Makes you completely immune to attack - wtf???
4.  Delays half the income by one turn.  That's supposed to balance out the above.. but in practice I don't find it hurting at all.  In fact it helps a little bit - by smoothing out your income it delays the need for +buy.  I'd rather have $6/$6 turns than one dead turn and another with $12 where I waste a big chunk of my money.

I just played a board involving Minion and Lighthouse.  I pretended there was nothing but those two cards and Province and just robotically purchased the highest one I could each turn.  My opponent, who was of the ridiculous opinion that other cards matter, got crushed.  It was the least fun Dominion game I ever won.

1. The $2 - $3 difference generally doesn't matter at all. The only time it comes into play if you have a lot of +buy and want to mass buy, or if you have the $2/$5 opening.
2. Well, suppose you have a ton of lighthouses and a watchtower. You play watchtower. And you um... draw another bunch of lighthouses, thus increasing your buy ability by zero. Compare to having silvers - you could quite likely have gotten yourself a province buy.
4. Sure about that? Because in neither of those $6 turns would you be able to buy a province, which is what you need to win the game. If you have something great to buy for $6, then sure, but otherwise?

Silvers are pretty bad cards, really. You shouldn't be loading up on too many of them, unless the deck is absolutely terrible.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2011, 08:53:57 am by Fangz »
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Empathy

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #12 on: September 25, 2011, 09:51:59 am »
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Compare lighthouse to silver to which it is very similar:

1.  Costs $2 instead of $3 - big advantage
2.  Played during action phase so it combos like crazy with "draw up to x" cards like minion, watchtower, library - big advantage
3.  Makes you completely immune to attack - wtf???
4.  Delays half the income by one turn.  That's supposed to balance out the above.. but in practice I don't find it hurting at all.  In fact it helps a little bit - by smoothing out your income it delays the need for +buy.  I'd rather have $6/$6 turns than one dead turn and another with $12 where I waste a big chunk of my money.

I just played a board involving Minion and Lighthouse.  I pretended there was nothing but those two cards and Province and just robotically purchased the highest one I could each turn.  My opponent, who was of the ridiculous opinion that other cards matter, got crushed.  It was the least fun Dominion game I ever won.

1. The $2 - $3 difference generally doesn't matter at all. The only time it comes into play if you have a lot of +buy and want to mass buy, or if you have the $2/$5 opening.
2. Well, suppose you have a ton of lighthouses and a watchtower. You play watchtower. And you um... draw another bunch of lighthouses, thus increasing your buy ability by zero. Compare to having silvers - you could quite likely have gotten yourself a province buy.
4. Sure about that? Because in neither of those $6 turns would you be able to buy a province, which is what you need to win the game. If you have something great to buy for $6, then sure, but otherwise?

Silvers are pretty bad cards, really. You shouldn't be loading up on too many of them, unless the deck is absolutely terrible.

Ok, I think everybody kind of covered the pros and cons of lighthouse. Bashing any more in one way or another does not sound so productive. I'll do it just one last time just to show how annoying that can be:

1. Peddler
2. Village
3. Ignored
4. harem/noble

Again, this is completely unfair because I'm taking your responses out of context. I guess you could add a line to any comment about dominion "unless there is a card that changes everything".

I think the point of the initial poster is that lighthouse is roughly at the same power level as silver (in your average scenario, both give you the same payoff, but in different forms). The critical point to note about lighthouse is that it has much more upside than silver because it has more combo potential as well as combo protection included than silver.

That being said, this upside only realizes on some boards, while the (very limited) downside realizes on many more other boards. This is why qualifying it as "overpowered" is an overstatement. It has more potential. So does familiar compared to any solid but plain cantrip, unless the curses ran out or there is chapel.

Surprising conclusion: go for lighthouse in combo or attack and silver in big money decks. Anything in between, the two are probably equivalent, so go for whatever is more fun to you!

« Last Edit: September 25, 2011, 09:56:26 am by Empathy »
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glasser

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2011, 06:50:40 pm »
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You know, if you're going to talk about Lighthouse and Minion, it's worth noting that I've spent many a Minion/Lighthouse game staring at a 5-card hard full of green and wishing that I could choose to accept the Minion attack even when Lighthoused...
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guided

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #14 on: September 25, 2011, 10:23:35 pm »
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under what conditions would you buy a silver with $3 over a lighthouse??
I'm the world's biggest Lighthouse fanboy, but my answer to this question is "under most conditions". Silver doesn't miss shuffles or delay the 2nd coin until next turn.

I'll only very rarely buy Lighthouse with $3 unless I expect my opponent to be buying lots of strong attacks. It's mostly superior to Silver in Minion decks and double-Tactician decks, I suppose.
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Kahryl

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Re: Lighthouse: stupidly overpowered?
« Reply #15 on: September 26, 2011, 10:56:28 am »
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Thinking about it, I guess missing shuffles is a pretty significant drawback.. on isotropic it's hard to notice that kind of thing.  Thanks all for the replies!
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