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plank

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simple strategy guide for echoes?
« on: April 01, 2013, 01:29:20 pm »
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I'm just getting into echoes and there are loads of seemingly well known combos that would be nice to see listed.  Maybe even a card run down or a best/worst per age.  Point me in the right direction - it must be out there!
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popsofctown

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Re: simple strategy guide for echoes?
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2013, 03:58:55 pm »
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I tried writing something about echoes, but I ended up talking too much and going off every which way.
I'll spoiler it here, I won't post it as a topic.

Since there seems to be demand, I'll make some comments about some of the strategies echoes has to offer.  I play echoes most of the time, and isotropic insists on saying I'm a good player, so I guess that makes me qualified, as lost as I often feel playing games with the crazy expansion.

Knowing the rules to the expansion is of course, critical, and I'm going to assume you know them.  Don't miss the "patched" drawing rules.

I'll go card by card.  It probably isn't the best way to discuss the expansion, it's just the way that is easiest for me.
I will write little to nothing about cards that are self-explanatory and reasonably easy to assess on your own.
These comments will be for 2 player.
If you don't know what a card does, check out wero's visual listing here: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=7421.0
On almost all of these cards, I could comment, "you know, if you pay some attention and count cards, you can make this work better".  So assume that comment is tacked onto everything.

Dice
A coin flip chance of getting a 3-for-1 is like a 1.5 for one. 
Perfume
  You usually want to tuck echoes cards with the sailing effect, because if you tuck a covered card with an echo effect that's much better than the alternative.
Ruler
 Only use it as a Writing if you don't have any 2 for 1's available.  Don't use it as a Writing to draw base 2's early on, base 2's are too conditional early on.
Comb
Choose between colors that are tied for having the fewest base cards of that color revealed to you so far.  Break those ties based on what echoes cards you want.  Share the dogma generously, because you get 4 more cards of information more than your opponent.
Ice Skate
Ice Skates is like the Ambassador of Innovation, you can write so much stuff about this card man. 
Foreshadow base 3's only with the most extreme reluctance (like, ok, i'll do it, but only because I'm getting Destiny or sharing Ice Skates viciously).  The reason is that base 3's are filled with specialty cards like Feudalism, Medicine, Engineering, Compass, and Education. Foreshadowing is different from melding in that you get a free activation of the dogma, so foreshadowing a card with a dogma you can't use is much worse than melding a card with a dogma you can't use.  If you meld a card you can't use, you can just enjoy the icons and use your actions elsewhere, if you foreshadow a card with a dogma you can't use, you've lost a free action.
Echoes 3's are a bit more general purpose.
Melding base 2's is ok, because if you meld several you will probably find one that is useful for you.  Melding echoes 2's is good too.  If you are pretty pleased with your current setup, just foreshadow 3's instead of melding 2's.  But if you have nothing good going for you but ice skates, by all means meld some 2's.
Umbrella
Umbrella is a good Monument enabler, especially if you can get both monument and either of the first two achievements with it.  Achievement rushing is super strong in echoes.
Bell
The echo effect is kinda meh.
Bell itself is a good card though.  It's a great way to get bad echoes cards out of your hand so you can draw powerful echoes cards.
Flute
It's possible for Flute to 3 for 1 AND splay left.  Against a wise opponent though, it will be a weak Wheel that's doing a little splaying.
Bangle
You'll learn the hard way that tucked reds are virtually useless.  They always reveal castles splayed left, and you're not going to get to the point where they are splayed right by spamming Bangle.
Sharing Bangle to force your opponent to tuck cards is actually a nice move.  An alternative is to foreshadow just one or two echoes 3's to give you a slight edge in age 3.
Candles
I've little to say.
Plumbing
Sharing is caring.
Chopsticks
Chopsticks is best if you are ahead on achievements and there is plenty of fuel left in the 1's pile.
Noodles
If Noodles is "active", spam it at least until you have enough points to achieve 2.  Spamming Noodles until you have achieved 1-7 is perfectly acceptable play.
If your opponent has Noodles, draw lots of 1's to prevent Noodles from going active.  Your opponent will probably draw 1's to keep threatening to make it active.  Don't break the standoff until you have a good way to exploit the large number of cards in your hand: Canal Building, Currency, Umbrella, Ice Skates, Tools, Clothing, Road Building, etc.
Soap
Soap is not very good until later.  Later you can use it to achieve lots of 1's (best if you are ahead).
Masonry
In age 1, Supreme Monumental Masonry is a common strategy.  You can get 4 colors with 3 castles each, using every color but blue.  The only echoes cards that can participate in this strategy is Katana, age 3.  Remember that you only have to have Supremacy temporarily.
A little bit of left splay can allow you to do Supreme Monumental Masonry without the optimal cards.
Transition into an achievement rush after Supreme Monumental Masonry.  You might be behind in score at that point, though, so look into special achievements and Echoes access to standard achievements (like soap)
Code of Laws
Code of Laws is much more powerful in echoes because it can activate echo effects.  It can also get rid of bad echoes cards like Plumbing without covering good cards, like Metalworking.
Pottery
Pottery is a very useful way to swap out one echoes card for another.

Age 2
Lever
It's not that great.
Linguistic
It's that great.  Pick the foreshadow option most of the time, chilling out in age 2 will be perfectly fine.
Glassblowing
Slowly becoming one of my favorites, it's kind of like an Agriculture without all the guilt about your impending lack of board control.  You'll regain some board control with the forecast later.
Scissors
Chaturanga
Chaturanga is a juggernaut.  If you have a card with a bonus, it's usually your best play to take the 3 for 1.
Pagoda
Pagoda is not a powerhouse, but it's a nice way to do something useful based on castles.
Crossbow
Avoid melding this.  Besides the fact that it obviously can miss more than 40% of the time, it's also hard to get castle dominance when your top red card has 2/3s as many castles as most of the others.
Horseshoes
Self Explanatory
Toothbrush
Toothbrush can be really disgusting with aggressive sharing.  Good Monument enabler too, with a built in way to get you your first or second Classical age achievement for the rushing.
Watermill
Watermill is really random, and a little bit busted.  Don't use it if you're already ahead because of the randomness. 
Almanac
Almanac is one of many powerful achievement rushing strategies available in echoes.  It has strong score power, and the convenient access to Destiny makes it easy to get to 7 achievements.
You usually want to reclaim leaf dominance from an opponent who is spamming Almanac.  You can also force him to draw cards so that he has to spend time fixing his hand so he can foreshadow more blues.
Magnifying Glass
The echo effect ends up being a really hilarious way to make shared dogmas earn a sharing bonus.
Most of the time you won't really use the Toolsish effect.
Charitable Trust
Carl built in a nifty little combo with Umbrella's echo effect.
Don't be afraid of sharing Charitable Trust while ahead.  It doesn't matter if your opponent claims the their third achievement when you claim your sixth, because they aren't going to beat you by claiming four more achievements that point: their only way of catching up at that that point is score pile attacks or instant win effects.
Homing Pigeons
One of a few score pile attacks that can sedate the monstrous achievement rushes echoes has.
Novel
Sunglasses
Katana
Bend space and time to activate this attack whenever it will foreshadow something.  The card is so powerful it's a little bit boring, even.
Liquid Fire
This card is really weak.  It might not seem that way, but it is.
Deodorant
Shared deodorant can be a fantastic way to cover up your opponents cards, since it often covers 2 cards.
Sandpaper
Very bleh.  Meld from hand effects are weaker in echoes because you miss out on the chance to use your forecast.
Slide Rule
Slide rule can be a nice card, but don't durdle around with it far too long, because the tempo in echoes is fast.
Telescope
Telescope lets you get an unblockable age 5 achievement, if not even more than that.
Chintz
Chintz is a nice share.
Globe
Usually just return 2 cards.  You'll probably undo those left splays soon anyway.
Clock
Clock is a CRITICAL way of dealing with achievement rushes in echoes.  If your opponent is running up the score, you should consider digging through the blue 4's furiously for clock.  Clock or...
Toilet
The other powerful score-stopper.  You should even plan ahead for Toilet, lining your bonuses up for it in case you draw it.
Kobukson
Kobukson's lack of score power means that the rushing player may want to draw base 4's instead.
Shuriken
Compared to Enterprise, this card is 1 action point stronger.  Compared to Societies, it's 1 splay stronger.  It's a pretty strong card.
Barometer
Pretty weak.  The echo effect fights with the achievement effect, which is rather frustrating.
Pencil
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Also you probably are an expert if you buy two bureaucrats early.

carstimon

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Re: simple strategy guide for echoes?
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2013, 09:26:23 pm »
+1

I'm going to read over what you wrote.  But I don't see any reason for spoilering it, unless you just want to discourage people from reading a rough draft.
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teasel

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Re: simple strategy guide for echoes?
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2013, 09:35:09 pm »
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i might write a more detailed run down later in the road as i gain more experience with echoes and the basic one i already wrote get fixed but let's talk about a few echoes card i consider important in the meanwhile

Age 1

Perfume - having only 1 castle makes it hard to use but it basicaly tells your opponent to not tech up cause you will catch him otherwise

Ruler - much better than writing in that the echo effect will score you tons of free card

Ice Skates - if you share it and your opponent has no card,it doubles as board screwing as it forces your opponent to go through the removing part,it brings you closer to the foreshadowing achievement and it let you tech up

Flute - the rest of the text on the card doesn't matter,splaying left for an echo effect is great,the best part is that you can use it once to splay purple left and then cover flute with something else

Noodles - if you get all the 1,this is like having super pottery and it's easily one of the most powerfull echoes scorer

Chopsticks - all the card that makes achievement avaiable again are good,chopsticks in particular is good because you only need 5 points more for each time you claim 1

Soap - see above,i once won a game claiming three 1,two 2,a 3 and a 4 thanks to soap

Age 2

Lever - sort of like math but slower

Watermill - occasionaly it tucks huge amount of cards,all of the card that it tucks comes with extra points and a step more toward the wealth achievement

Chaturanga - 3 free action in that you get a free meld and 2 draws,occasionaly you also ends teching up

Age 3

Almanac - i didn't think much of this card at first since all it does is that it foreshadows but in truth it let you score huge amount of points as those 4 risk turning into a 5 with a bonus and that 5 with a bonus can then turn into a 7 with a bonus and so on...

Novel - it's like a wheel,that splays your card and keeps drawing even after you cover it

Deodorant - if drawing and melding a card is good then doing it twice is what? awesome?

Age 4

Slide Rule - if all your card are 4 and all your pile are splayed this let you jump 5 ages ahead,that's huge

Clock - carefull board manipulation let you use this to splay all your color right,the i demand effect has a decent chance of stealing 3,4 or 5 which can lead to huge scoring

Kobukson - if you missed flute,this basicaly does the same

Age 5

Coke - Coke let you search for/and improve industrialization,industrialization is godly in echoes games

Stove - decent scorer in the right situation

Age 6

Kaleidoscope - Atomic Theory + Splaying = godly

Hot Air Balloon - let you score an achievement in a pinch

Age 7

Photography - if you use it with bifocals or jeans it let you skip directly to age 9-10

Rubber - sort of like super steam engine

Elevator - huge score stealer

Saxophone - i've never seen it happen but this potentialy let you insta-win you the game

Age 8

Radio Telescope - first insta-win card even tough it's pretty random and you need tons of lightbulb which doesn't make it much different from empiricism in the end

Crossword - quite big drawing power

Tractor - it scores,it draws,it's nice all around

Television - like hot air balloon it can scores an achievement when the stars align

Age 9

Laser - stops an opponent with a big score pile by forfeiting all the achievements

Rock - i've never seen this insta-win but ehy it's there

Age 10

Human Genome - if you have no card in your score pile this insta-win you the game

Puzzle Cube - if you have no pile splayed this insta-win you the game

Social Network - if your opponent has got the icon lead this insta-win you the game





« Last Edit: April 01, 2013, 09:40:42 pm by teasel »
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ksasaki

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Re: simple strategy guide for echoes?
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2013, 03:24:24 pm »
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i might write a more detailed run down later in the road as i gain more experience with echoes and the basic one i already wrote get fixed but let's talk about a few echoes card i consider important in the meanwhile

Age 1

Perfume - having only 1 castle makes it hard to use but it basicaly tells your opponent to not tech up cause you will catch him otherwise

excellent for building echoes cards early on, great starter card

Ruler - much better than writing in that the echo effect will score you tons of free card

also has the distinction of allowing you to immediately draw a 2 echoes (some real gems like watermill and linguistics)

Ice Skates - if you share it and your opponent has no card,it doubles as board screwing as it forces your opponent to go through the removing part,it brings you closer to the foreshadowing achievement and it let you tech up

i'd argue that it's even more useful to return 3 cards to meld 3 2s of the echoes variety, the screwage factor is useful too

Flute - the rest of the text on the card doesn't matter,splaying left for an echo effect is great,the best part is that you can use it once to splay purple left and then cover flute with something else

Noodles - if you get all the 1,this is like having super pottery and it's easily one of the most powerfull echoes scorer

noodles is a scary one, also immune to mapmaking unlike the other big 1 scorers like clothing and metalworking

Chopsticks - all the card that makes achievement avaiable again are good,chopsticks in particular is good because you only need 5 points more for each time you claim 1

if you tuck this and splay left under domestication, makes for "super domestication" (draw 2, meld 1)

Soap - see above,i once won a game claiming three 1,two 2,a 3 and a 4 thanks to soap

Umbrella - if you can tuck this and splay left under the wheel, it's very similar to "super domestication," though you must meld the card before you draw 2


Age 2

Lever - sort of like math but slower

Watermill - occasionaly it tucks huge amount of cards,all of the card that it tucks comes with extra points and a step more toward the wealth achievement

Chaturanga - 3 free action in that you get a free meld and 2 draws,occasionaly you also ends teching up

Linguistics - THE power card of age 2 (IMO), not luck dependent like foreshadowing a 4 is great, in addition you can draw a card equal to a bonus, this card is useful forever

Toothbrush - if you can get this tucked under fermenting and splayed right, WOW (tuck all cards of one value)

Age 3

Almanac - i didn't think much of this card at first since all it does is that it foreshadows but in truth it let you score huge amount of points as those 4 risk turning into a 5 with a bonus and that 5 with a bonus can then turn into a 7 with a bonus and so on...

sick sick echoes if you can splay that blue left

Novel - it's like a wheel,that splays your card and keeps drawing even after you cover it

if you can get bell's echo with this (score a card from your hand), it becomes really crazy on top of whatever purple card you have, monotheism a personal favorite

Deodorant - if drawing and melding a card is good then doing it twice is what? awesome?

Age 4

Slide Rule - if all your card are 4 and all your pile are splayed this let you jump 5 ages ahead,that's huge

yeah, even getting to age 6 where that dreaded industrialization is is awesome

Clock - carefull board manipulation let you use this to splay all your color right,the i demand effect has a decent chance of stealing 3,4 or 5 which can lead to huge scoring

Kobukson - if you missed flute,this basicaly does the same

not to mention it removes all your opponents castles, kind of useful I might add, also note that it says splay left ANY color, so you can start trolling your opponents splays later too...

Telescope - not great by itself, but awesome again like Almanac for that left splay echo

Age 5

Coke - Coke let you search for/and improve industrialization,industrialization is godly in echoes games

Stove - decent scorer in the right situation

Lightning Rod: killer card if you are tucking 2 echoes, in addition to forcing your opponent to remove top cards, NOTE: needs a castle lead

Age 6

Kaleidoscope - Atomic Theory + Splaying = godly

kinda luck based, good if you have no right-splays

Hot Air Balloon - let you score an achievement in a pinch

Hot air balloon let's you draw and score a 7.  I generally don't achieve my opponent's card because the "instead" effect is draw and meld a 7.   not bad at all...

Bifocals - like stated below, foreshadow ANY value, also a right-splay echo effect, the additional ability of returning a foreshadowed card and foreshadowing another is awesome too

Loom - kind of like a poor man's industrialization, but it can let you get that heritage at the cost of loss of score.  But if you have a bunch of 1s and 2s then it's really a good deal

Age 7

Photography - if you use it with bifocals or jeans it let you skip directly to age 9-10

Rubber - sort of like super steam engine

Elevator - huge score stealer

elevator is a KILLER card if you get it early.  one clock means it is un-stealable by all those crown-stealers.  Also means it will not be shared generally, you can really change the score situation in a hurry

Saxophone - i've never seen it happen but this potentialy let you insta-win you the game

splaying red up never hurt anybody, also the draw and tuck 2 8s is an echoes effect that appears for right and up splays!  nice!  Think it has a score a top card effect too

Age 8

Radio Telescope - first insta-win card even tough it's pretty random and you need tons of lightbulb which doesn't make it much different from empiricism in the end

yeah but drawing x 9s for every lightbulb, there are tons of good 9s like satellites.  My friend used to complain that it was a race for radio telescope!  haha

Crossword - quite big drawing power

Tractor - it scores,it draws,it's nice all around

Television - like hot air balloon it can scores an achievement when the stars align

ridiculous card...if your opponent has a bunch of 1s and / or 2s you can literally send his board back to the stone age while you achieve the rest.  Kind of like a real television really...

Age 9

Laser - stops an opponent with a big score pile by forfeiting all the achievements

not to mention lets you draw and meld 2 10s.   Very nice indeed

Rock - i've never seen this insta-win but ehy it's there

Helicopter - I've never used this to great effect, but you are allowed to transfer top cards to opponent's score piles.  ANY card you choose, and then you can return a card with a matching symbol and repeat.  So you could totally kill his board, but unfortunately it goes to score

Age 10

Human Genome - if you have no card in your score pile this insta-win you the game

Puzzle Cube - if you have no pile splayed this insta-win you the game

Social Network - if your opponent has got the icon lead this insta-win you the game

GPS - demand to return all your foreshadow, only direct attack card on foreshadow, also foreshadow 3 10s
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