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Author Topic: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?  (Read 67599 times)

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Awaclus

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #175 on: December 08, 2013, 09:45:34 pm »
0

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #176 on: December 08, 2013, 09:57:43 pm »
+5

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
Are blue service animals allowed in the restaraunt?
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michaeljb

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #177 on: December 08, 2013, 09:59:13 pm »
+6

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
Are blue service animals allowed in the restaraunt?
Only when they're giving out free pizza.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #178 on: December 08, 2013, 10:03:35 pm »
+2

Just wrapped up a Trader/Feodum game where I three piled the Silvers, Feoda and Duchies.

I suppose in reality it was just a boring duchy rush game wherein I proved to be a exploitative, dishonorable wretch for ending it in 3 piles while the other fool tried to run out the Provinces, because, you know it wasn't at all the tactically intelligent strategy.
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Tables

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #179 on: December 08, 2013, 10:09:50 pm »
+46

This is a big thread that massively exploded right from it's conception, so I haven't read anything everything - which means my following point might have been made already. But I'm going to make it anyway.

In Dominion, the objective is not to have the most points when the game ends. The objective to have the game end when you have the most points.

This fundamental understanding of the objective of the game changes a lot of the perspective on how you should play. Ending the game isn't just something which will eventually happen, but should in fact be a part of your goal. In fact, in many engine type games, you might be more concerned with the question of 'can I end the game' than 'can I score points'!

That said, the points obviously still matter. You need to have more of them before you end the game - or a means to get more when you do end the game. Therefore, getting a single Province when piles begin to run low can be a very powerful move. Now your opponent might be able to end the game, but they won't be able to have more points when they do it. Conversely they might end up with more points from their turn, but they won't end the game, giving you a chance to do so instead.

And of course as seems to be always the case in Dominion, edge cases apply. 3+ player games are fundamentally different because someone may end the game as strong second instead of possibly being overtaken. Sometimes (actually not too infrequently) racing to get 1/2 of the points is a better choice than just ending the game - once you have half the points, you can't lose. etc.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 10:56:50 pm by Tables »
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Kirian

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #180 on: December 08, 2013, 10:23:24 pm »
+2

This is a big thread that massively exploded right from it's conception, so I haven't read anything - which means my following point might have been made already. But I'm going to make it anyway.

In Dominion, the objective is not to have the most points when the game ends. The objective to have the game end when you have the most points.

That specific point wasn't made, but I absolutely love the way you've phrased that!
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Count Grishnakh

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #181 on: December 08, 2013, 10:42:28 pm »
0

Just wrapped up a Trader/Feodum game where I three piled the Silvers, Feoda and Duchies.

I suppose in reality it was just a boring duchy rush game wherein I proved to be a exploitative, dishonorable wretch for ending it in 3 piles while the other fool tried to run out the Provinces, because, you know it wasn't at all the tactically intelligent strategy.

Nope I applaud your strategy ANY alternate VP strategy SHOULD aim to three pile the game before all of the provinces have been pulled.. Please remember, everyone I'm referring to premature three piles, such as grabbing an estate and three-piling for the win on your turn

I finished a colony / feodum game with traders, bandit camp, journeyman and festival... My deck was so well executed that I was able to pull 3 of the 8 colonies along with 6 feodums that were worth 8 VP each

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Awaclus

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #183 on: December 08, 2013, 11:05:02 pm »
+6

Any quote of my meme gets an upvote from me.

Quote from: sudgy's meme
any
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #184 on: December 08, 2013, 11:07:27 pm »
0

Just wrapped up a Trader/Feodum game where I three piled the Silvers, Feoda and Duchies.

I suppose in reality it was just a boring duchy rush game wherein I proved to be a exploitative, dishonorable wretch for ending it in 3 piles while the other fool tried to run out the Provinces, because, you know it wasn't at all the tactically intelligent strategy.

Those games are so much fun!  Have you tried this with Masterpiece yet?  I'd say it's easier, as you empty out the Masterpieces at the same time as the Silvers, so you don't have to worry about Duchies.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #185 on: December 08, 2013, 11:15:43 pm »
0

Dominion rules wise (in terms of game mechanics) is set up about as fair as any game I've seen.  Yes there is P1 advantage in some games, but most of that is due to individual cards that provide a P1 advantage.  I think there is room to say some cards (scout, adventurer) would be more interesting if they were slightly stronger, but those changes are minor and eh, some card has to be the worst card.  I also think some unintended card combos (possession/ambassador and kc/goons/masq come to mind) the game would be better off without, but they're only present in a few games, and well it's not easy to fix them. 

House rules are fine (for example, at my house in ping pong you can't lose by missing a serve) if they make it more fun for you, but in general they do not make it a better game.  Often if is omitting a rule, there is a reason the designer put it in there.  In this situation, it sounds like you are advocating 3 piling to be allowed in some games but not in others.  However, you are unable to give firm lines as to when it would be allowed.  And a rule of "You can three pile if I think its ok" is certainly the worst rule possible that is just designed because you are afraid of losing to better players.  If this is what you are asking for.

Actually I did define when it is acceptable to to 3 pile: When you have a province or its equivalent or more

I pursue 3 pile strategies all the time, I'm just not the opportunistic buy an estate and drain the last pile kinda guy

Oh so the game you're complaining about is OK since your opponent bought the equivalent of 2 provinces.  Gotcha.
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Count Grishnakh

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #186 on: December 08, 2013, 11:21:18 pm »
0

Dominion rules wise (in terms of game mechanics) is set up about as fair as any game I've seen.  Yes there is P1 advantage in some games, but most of that is due to individual cards that provide a P1 advantage.  I think there is room to say some cards (scout, adventurer) would be more interesting if they were slightly stronger, but those changes are minor and eh, some card has to be the worst card.  I also think some unintended card combos (possession/ambassador and kc/goons/masq come to mind) the game would be better off without, but they're only present in a few games, and well it's not easy to fix them. 

House rules are fine (for example, at my house in ping pong you can't lose by missing a serve) if they make it more fun for you, but in general they do not make it a better game.  Often if is omitting a rule, there is a reason the designer put it in there.  In this situation, it sounds like you are advocating 3 piling to be allowed in some games but not in others.  However, you are unable to give firm lines as to when it would be allowed.  And a rule of "You can three pile if I think its ok" is certainly the worst rule possible that is just designed because you are afraid of losing to better players.  If this is what you are asking for.

Actually I did define when it is acceptable to to 3 pile: When you have a province or its equivalent or more

I pursue 3 pile strategies all the time, I'm just not the opportunistic buy an estate and drain the last pile kinda guy

Oh so the game you're complaining about is OK since your opponent bought the equivalent of 2 provinces.  Gotcha.

ya, after reviewing the log I've changed my opinion on that game
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blueblimp

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #187 on: December 09, 2013, 01:14:48 am »
0

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
I'm at a loss to explain this honestly because, to me, answering "what is the game design purpose of ending the game when 3 piles are empty" with "to reduce the strength of Duchy rushing" is obviously nonsensical, because Duchy rushing would be weakened without that rule. Am I the only one?
« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 01:16:11 am by blueblimp »
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Awaclus

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #188 on: December 09, 2013, 03:07:18 am »
0

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
I'm at a loss to explain this honestly because, to me, answering "what is the game design purpose of ending the game when 3 piles are empty" with "to reduce the strength of Duchy rushing" is obviously nonsensical, because Duchy rushing would be weakened without that rule. Am I the only one?
Without that rule, we would have the 1-pile-rule. I think it makes perfect sense to go from 1 pile to Provinces or 3 piles with the purpose of making Duchy rushes more difficult to pull off.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #189 on: December 09, 2013, 03:11:03 am »
+2

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
I'm at a loss to explain this honestly because, to me, answering "what is the game design purpose of ending the game when 3 piles are empty" with "to reduce the strength of Duchy rushing" is obviously nonsensical, because Duchy rushing would be weakened without that rule. Am I the only one?
What's going on here is that you and Awaclus have different interpretations of what "without that rule" means. To you, it means "strike that rule from the current rulebook, leaving other rules the same as they are now"; to Awaclus, it means "return to the status quo ante before that rule was instituted".

In the latter case, what the game would be like without the 3-pile ending rule is that it would have the "game ends when any one pile is empty" rule, in which Duchy rushing is strong. The reason the game has the 3-pile rule is to eliminate that.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #190 on: December 09, 2013, 06:43:57 am »
+2

Any sensible poker player understands that it's your money and you are free to leave with it any time you want. Choosing when to cash out is an important aspect of poker strategy, and the best players know when is best to do so (hint: it's not when you have a big lead against weaker players)
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #191 on: December 09, 2013, 11:03:05 am »
+1

I love three-piling actually. I love winning a game with negative points, stuff like that. The only "bad" way of winning at Dominion is when you're unnecessarily drawing it out.

I played a game with someone on the forums recently (I forget who you were, but it was fun!) that I lost 0 to -1. It was incredible.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #192 on: December 09, 2013, 04:54:56 pm »
0

Let's say you play poker with some friends for money. In the FIRST or second game you made some good decisions but you also had extraordinary luck, and you just won 100$ from the other poker players. Immediately after the game you say "Alright guys, I think I'm going to call it a night, see ya later!

That's why pro poker tourneys play a set amount of hands.

To be clear, most professional poker is played in cash games, where there is most certainly not a set amount of hands. Tournament play is what's televised because it's more dramatic and has a better narrative for an audience, not because it's "better" or "more fair" or "more professional".

That said, in reference to the original example, any poker player who gets butthurt because someone did that is an idiot. Anyone is perfectly free to walk with their winnings... and if they're no good, I'm perfectly fine with taking their money some other time, or with taking someone else's money.

Do they actually televise tournaments with a set amount of hands?  A few years ago I went through a phase where I watched a lot of WPT and such, and I'm fairly certain that they don't have fixed number of hands.  Players are free to bet within the rules, go all in, etc.  They never suddenly stop on hand X and see who has the most money left -- they play all the way until someone has all the chips.

Then the game is edited to fit within the time they have to show it on TV, showing the most exciting hands and cutting out all the hands where everyone just folds all around. :P




Just wrapped up a Trader/Feodum game where I three piled the Silvers, Feoda and Duchies.

I suppose in reality it was just a boring duchy rush game wherein I proved to be a exploitative, dishonorable wretch for ending it in 3 piles while the other fool tried to run out the Provinces, because, you know it wasn't at all the tactically intelligent strategy.

Nope I applaud your strategy ANY alternate VP strategy SHOULD aim to three pile the game before all of the provinces have been pulled.. Please remember, everyone I'm referring to premature three piles, such as grabbing an estate and three-piling for the win on your turn

I finished a colony / feodum game with traders, bandit camp, journeyman and festival... My deck was so well executed that I was able to pull 3 of the 8 colonies along with 6 feodums that were worth 8 VP each

The problem with this argument is that "premature" is arbitrarily defined.  3-pile endings don't just come out of nowhere.  Part of the strategy of Dominion is watching the piles as they run low and paying attention to your opponent's deck.  How much buying power do they have?  How many +Buys can they accumulate in a single turn?  There are game recaps in the forum from top players where they talk about how these things factored into their decisions.

If a player is able to buy an Estate and then 3-pile, it's because they built a powerful deck with lots of buying power and +Buy.  Or the piles got low and you didn't react properly.

Yes, sometimes it does come down to luck, but that can happen outside of the 3-pile rule too.  Oh, I just so happened to connect Tournament+Province first.  Hey, my Sea Hag flipped yours three times in a row.  Wow, I just so happened to have that single Curse in my hand every time you played Mountebank, and you somehow never managed to block my MB despite you having 6 Curses in your deck.

In the long run though, skill trumps all of these luck-driven victories.  A player who always goes for Treasure Map might scrape a fluke win over Stef or WW once in a while, but they'll get crushed the vast majority of the time.

Dominion is a game of both luck and skill.  Part of that skill is in making your own luck, and making the most of your luck.  There is no dishonour in creating a deck that can threaten the 3-pile and ending the game on a win when you are able.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #193 on: December 09, 2013, 04:56:35 pm »
+2

Aside: I don't get why people think Treasure Map is a luck card that lets you play a strategy of "get two, connect them right away, win" sometimes. Even if you do connect them t5, I suggest most of the time you're still losing.....

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #194 on: December 09, 2013, 05:01:01 pm »
+1

Aside: I don't get why people think Treasure Map is a luck card that lets you play a strategy of "get two, connect them right away, win" sometimes. Even if you do connect them t5, I suggest most of the time you're still losing.....

It is the epitome of luck-based cards, I think.  Completely useless when they whiff, but clearly profitable when they work.  It's certainly not a guaranteed win, especially when played by a low-skill player against a high-skill player, but it's a very simple and easy to understand example.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #195 on: December 09, 2013, 05:19:52 pm »
+3

I can understand where the OP is coming from.  It can be really frustrating when you are excited about a new idea or engine or other strategy, are feeling really invested in this particular game of Dominion, and then the game ends quite suddenly.  I'm usually paying attention to the Province pile, so sudden (i.e. unexpected) endings usually result from three-piling.  This happens to me often in Settlers of Catan also, where I am building up gleefully when someone else declares that they've won and frankly I'm not even cognizant of how many points I have since I'd only been focused on building and not scoring.  And of course in chess, where I feel like I'm am clearly dominating, and then I am suddenly (i.e. unexpectedly) checkmated.  It is frustrating at the time, but in all of these cases I learn from my mistake and try to do better next game.  Except Settlers.  Never seem to learn from that mistake.
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #196 on: December 09, 2013, 05:21:24 pm »
0

Something I've done before is designing an uber-engine game and playing it solitaire.  That's pretty fun.

I haven't been able to do that since Iso died though...
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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #197 on: December 09, 2013, 05:23:44 pm »
+3

I can understand where the OP is coming from.  It can be really frustrating when you are excited about a new idea or engine or other strategy, are feeling really invested in this particular game of Dominion, and then the game ends quite suddenly.  I'm usually paying attention to the Province pile, so sudden (i.e. unexpected) endings usually result from three-piling.  This happens to me often in Settlers of Catan also, where I am building up gleefully when someone else declares that they've won and frankly I'm not even cognizant of how many points I have since I'd only been focused on building and not scoring.  And of course in chess, where I feel like I'm am clearly dominating, and then I am suddenly (i.e. unexpectedly) checkmated.  It is frustrating at the time, but in all of these cases I learn from my mistake and try to do better next game.  Except Settlers.  Never seem to learn from that mistake.

Obviously not, if you keep playing Settlers.
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SirPeebles

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #198 on: December 09, 2013, 05:28:07 pm »
0

I can understand where the OP is coming from.  It can be really frustrating when you are excited about a new idea or engine or other strategy, are feeling really invested in this particular game of Dominion, and then the game ends quite suddenly.  I'm usually paying attention to the Province pile, so sudden (i.e. unexpected) endings usually result from three-piling.  This happens to me often in Settlers of Catan also, where I am building up gleefully when someone else declares that they've won and frankly I'm not even cognizant of how many points I have since I'd only been focused on building and not scoring.  And of course in chess, where I feel like I'm am clearly dominating, and then I am suddenly (i.e. unexpectedly) checkmated.  It is frustrating at the time, but in all of these cases I learn from my mistake and try to do better next game.  Except Settlers.  Never seem to learn from that mistake.

Obviously not, if you keep playing Settlers.

That's part of why I never learn.  I play Settlers once or twice a year, usually in a social context where the only other options are monopoly or risk.
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Holger

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Re: Is there a "good" and "bad" way to Win in Dominion?
« Reply #199 on: December 09, 2013, 05:30:59 pm »
+1

But you can't just omit the middle step in an argument!

It'd be like saying "I ordered the cheapest entrée because I had some spare money to spend on food". It makes no sense, even if the full story is: "I went to a more expensive restaurant than usual because I had some spare money to spend on food. I didn't want to be too extravagant, so I ordered the cheapest entrée."
I'm not omitting the middle step, there never was a middle step in the scenario unless Donald X. is hiding something. What I'm saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided that the cheapest entrée at an expensive restaurant would be the thing I'm getting, then I went there and ordered it". What you're saying is "I had some spare money to spend on food, therefore I decided to go a more expensive restaurant, and while I was there, I realized I couldn't afford anything but the cheapest entrée", and the conclusion you're drawing from that is that you actually didn't get a more expensive meal than you usually do, because it was cheaper than some other stuff you could have ordered in that restaurant.
I'm at a loss to explain this honestly because, to me, answering "what is the game design purpose of ending the game when 3 piles are empty" with "to reduce the strength of Duchy rushing" is obviously nonsensical, because Duchy rushing would be weakened without that rule. Am I the only one?
What's going on here is that you and Awaclus have different interpretations of what "without that rule" means. To you, it means "strike that rule from the current rulebook, leaving other rules the same as they are now"; to Awaclus, it means "return to the status quo ante before that rule was instituted".

In the latter case, what the game would be like without the 3-pile ending rule is that it would have the "game ends when any one pile is empty" rule, in which Duchy rushing is strong. The reason the game has the 3-pile rule is to eliminate that.

Right, but it's an interesting question why there is an "x-pile" rule at all. I suppose it's
a) to prevent infinite or very long games when no player can afford Provinces, and/or
b) because the game becomes less interesting when many piles are empty.

You could probably replace 3 piles by 4 (as in 5-6p) without too much detriment, if you prefer a longer/higher-scoring game.
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