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Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Fan Mechanics Week 55: Jewelry
« on: January 29, 2023, 07:34:00 pm »
I guess Jewelry isn't getting a lot of love; not many submissions. I still think it's an interesting concept.  :D It really is sort of a different phase in between the Night phase and buying your first thing, since you can't play Treasures. I like that it uses that space.
I guess the problem is that it is pretty narrow design space. You need resources that you can still use in your Buy phase because otherwise you could implement it as Night, hence all Jewelry cards produce Coins and Buys. You also need to care about stuff that happened during the Buy phase, because otherwise you could implement it as normal Treasure.

I chose this contest as I thought with all the card shaped things allowing you to play Actions in your "buy after treasures" phase that there'd be some design space for cards specifically designed to do that. Particularly frustrated by Sheepdog, Trail etc. worthlessly drawing cards in the buy phase. It's true that a lot of the designs that don't involve $ and buy would be fine as night cards, though I think anything involving playing a card after you buy it is better suited to Jewelry than Night Cards to make $ and buy worthwhile.


24 hour warning

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Revised versions of published cards
« on: January 29, 2023, 07:16:14 pm »
I thought there was some sort of mistake with Figurine and Longship being $5s. Figurine has proven itself as a solid $5 to me, and it's retroactively made me see Scepter and Capitalism as a lot stronger.

Jury's still out on Longship for me.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Revised versions of published cards
« on: January 29, 2023, 01:11:26 am »
I don't mind a bit of randomness (I like Boons and Loots), but I think Ruins are too similar in function to Curses, and I don't like Hexes for various reasons. Meanwhile I really like the Snow and Idle Hands fan mechanics, as de facto "-1 Card" and "-1 Action" junk respectively, and think they could work to fix up a few cards.

Action - $3*
+1 Action
Return this to its pile

Action - $3*
+1 Card
Return this to its pile

So when a card says "Receive a Hex", instead of the random negative effect, you gain a Hex ("Idle Hands"). New versions of the Doom cards would say "Gain a Hex" (and not have the Doom type), but there'd be rulebook to say that "receive" is the same as "gain".

I picked it this way around because I think it's more interesting with Cursed Village and Tormentor, but maybe the other way around works better.

This is all part of a "3rd editions" project - a way to "update" cards without replacing them. For Dark Ages it makes Death Cart stronger and Cultist/Marauder much weaker but I think they still work.

Weekly Design Contest / Re: Weekly Design Contest #176 - Game Changer
« on: January 27, 2023, 06:47:57 am »
Action - $4
Draw until you have 7 cards in hand
In games using this, don't discard Actions and Treasures from your hand during Clean-Up (reveal your hand before you discard).

Rules clarification: You still draw 5 cards for your new hand in Clean-Up. Basically if you don't play an Action or Treasure, you get to "Save" it to your next hand for free. This is not optional.

Note: The new wording for Patron only gives you Coffers during an Action phase.

Dominion General Discussion / Well designed cards
« on: January 27, 2023, 05:15:41 am »
Going to go for a bit of positivity. Post card (shaped things) that you really like.

Abundance: If you don't play it smart it's basically a workshop (early game gives you $3 after an Action, late game you arbitrarily buy Actions to activate it), but given its clear power it really encourages you to find strategies to make it count, such as by stacking. Sometimes they're no brainers (e.g. when Supplies is on the board) but generally it's more interesting especially considering you can trigger it before you really want to.

Witch's Hut: I initially thought the Attack was just thrown in as compensation for drawing the cards dead, because discarding 2 actions is such a high cost, right? Turns out there are lots of ways to consistently trigger the Attack in a well thought out strategy and it's fun to get there. Powerful with Big Money but the attack is too tantalising to resist so games with Witch's Hut usually end up interesting.

Cauldron: Similar to the above, I like the effort you need to put in to curse with this, either by lining up Cauldrons or gaining Actions at other times during your turn. It's really rewarding to pull off.

Grotto: Did Donald X learn nothing from the clunkiness of Research? This card is clearly worse than Cellar, right? Turns out, there's a really interesting design space in making cards miss the reshuffle. A really good "teacher card".

Stowaway: Lots of good ways to make use of its effect, even in games where it's the only Duration. i always like seeing it on the board, but it doesn't feel too powerful.

Replace: Especially compared to the card it... replaced (Saboteur is best forgotten). Just the perfect card for the likely first expansion people buy - it's Remodel, but has a few interesting tricks up it's sleeve. In playing with it, you end up realising more about what good old Remodel from the base set can do.

War Chest: My other favourite of the direct replacements. Amazing how such a simple tweak on the same mechanic can go from a card you regret buying to something very fun as you try to determine what card it is your opponent really wants. Really good non-attack interactivity.

Magnate: Other strengths of the replacements keep coming to mind. This card has all the fun of Counting House and Coppersmith in terms of seeming like it can be super powerful, but actually taking a bit of work to make work. But it feels far less luck based. A card where being situational feels very intentional and I want to see more like it. Also perfect for the theme of Prosperity.

Variants and Fan Cards / Fan Mechanics Week 55: Jewelry
« on: January 23, 2023, 06:57:26 pm »
For this contest, design a card with the Jewelry type (originally posted by Scolapasta in the Week 61 WDC)

My entry for this week is a new Treasure subtype: Jewelry:

Normally your buy phase consists of of two sub phases: First, play your treasure cards (spend coffer, pay off debt); second, buy card(s) (or event(s), or project(s))

Treasure-Jewelry cards are are cards you can play any time during your buy phase. Frequently, they will care about what or how many cards you have bought.


In my view, "Jewelry" is the type that allows you to play things during your buy phase precisely after you've bought a card. So you could technically do a pure Jewelry (can't play until you've bought a card), or an Action-Jewelry. Of note is the phase is still called your Buy phase, even though there's two distinctive parts to it.

Scolapasta's examples were all Treasure-Jewelry and in my view those are the most interesting designs and are the least likely to avoid confusion. But I won't rule out other interesting designs. If the answer to "Could this have just been a Treasure" or "Could this have just been a night card" is yes, then it won't do too well in judging.

I have a template here

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Fan Mechanics Week 54: At the Border
« on: January 23, 2023, 06:34:46 pm »
Thank you Aquila for judging and apologies for missing the judging. I will post a new contest shortly.

I didn't get around to voting, but it's interesting how weak people are ranking Fortune Hunter.

It's very often at least a Terminal Gold and it has a few other tricks up its sleeve. It's also likely to come up in people's experiences in "extra plunder" games, giving it more Treasures to interact with. That's setting it up to be seen as very strong, and I thought Terminal Gold was already considered too good for $4. So it's very interesting that even in first impressions something similar to it in power isn't really impressing anybody.

I wonder how strong a Terminal Gold actually is.
I think it is a simple matter. LastFootnote has argued that Adventurer is a $2, i.e. digging for Treasure is not better than drawing. So Fortune Hunter is similar to +2 Coins, +1 Card which is weaker than Smithy. Smithy is a strong $4, so Fortune Hunter is a weak $4.

That sounds like something I would say, but Fortune Hunter is different from Adventurer in a lot of important ways. Adventurer's base value is +$2, and you have to work pretty hard to make it reliably better. Fortune Hunter's base value is +$3. It can whiff more easily than Adventurer, but it's still not likely to in the kind of deck where you want it. But perhaps equally important, Fortune Hunter puts the other cards back instead of discarding them. So it's effectively pulling a Copper out of your next hand (or next draw if you didn't play it at the end of your Action phase). That's usually a pretty nice side benefit. Also, Fortune Hunter sometimes lets you choose between different Treasures, and you can smooth out your money a bit that way. You can even opt not to play any of the Treasures! With Adventurer you're stuck with whatever you get.

That's good for hitting precise price points the way Courtyard-BM and Gear-BM is. It's too bad the simulation forum is dead as I'd like to see how it compares to other BM strategies.

I wonder how strong a Terminal Gold actually is.
Well, strictly worse than Treasurer, so it couldn't be priced at $5 or higher. Could well be in the sour spot where it's too strong at $4 and too weak at $5.

That's what I thought, but now I'm less sure. I think we would have said the same thing about +3 Cards if Smithy didn't exist.

I didn't get around to voting, but it's interesting how weak people are ranking Fortune Hunter.

It's very often at least a Terminal Gold and it has a few other tricks up its sleeve. It's also likely to come up in people's experiences in "extra plunder" games, giving it more Treasures to interact with. That's setting it up to be seen as very strong, and I thought Terminal Gold was already considered too good for $4. So it's very interesting that even in first impressions something similar to it in power isn't really impressing anybody.

I wonder how strong a Terminal Gold actually is.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: More Ruins - Post your ideas too
« on: January 20, 2023, 09:42:58 am »
This is a blast from the past!

I'm not really fond of Ruins any more. Cultist and Marauder don't feel very different to cursers. Death Cart is neat in the way that it can trash both the junk it comes with and Actions but I wonder if it would have worked with "trash an Action or a Curse". There's some interesting interactions with Ways and cards that assume Actions are valuable (e.g. Siren, Advance), and games where you are very happy to have a Ruined Market.  But not really worth the 50 cards in Dark Ages it takes up.

I think the fan mechanics "Snow" (oneshot +1 Action) and "Idle Hands" (oneshot +1 Card) are more interesting versions of what Ruins was trying to do. They're weaker but that leads to more interesting designs with the cards, and they still have the fun of Action junk.

If I was making a 2nd edition of Dark Ages. I'd remove Ruins as we know it and replace it with a pile of oneshot "+2 Actions", or maybe one of Snow/Idle Hands, which aren't in the supply. I'd still call it "Ruins" (in the card name) so existing cards can stay though theyd lose the "Looter" type. I think Death Cart stays but Cultist and Marauder are best gone (but maybe they'd be fine with weaker "Ruins").  People would accuse me of living up to my username but that frees up room in the box (you probably wouldn't need 50 of the new Ruins) and I would like to see Events etc. in Dark Ages with all the non-supply cards.

Weekly Design Contest / Re: Weekly Design Contest #175 - Super Expensive
« on: January 20, 2023, 12:33:56 am »
Action - $10
+3 Actions
+3 Cards
+3 Buys
You may trash up to 3 cards from your hand.

Variants and Fan Cards / Re: Fan Mechanics Week 54: At the Border
« on: January 15, 2023, 01:29:35 am »
IMO this should have a type as it impacts the game whether you buy a relevant card or not, so it has "in games using this" rules.

Anyway, my entry (no extra type included).

Action - $5
Trash a card from your hand. You may play an Action from your Border twice

It's a Throne Room that can also trash if it misses an Action, expedite an Action you gained this turn, or salvage one you trashed earlier (for benefit?).

Donald X: Don't make silver+ power level cards costing 4$ or less, they're too good.
Community: k
Donald X: here's Patron lol
Community: oh yeah >:( look at what we got

Why do people always name Patron as the first official Silver+ for $4. Conclave came first.

Arguably it started with Delve. You never buy "Silver" in Delve games. But Silver is still ending up in your deck.

Conclave is terminal if you don't have differently named cards to play with it.  A hand with 2 conclaves and no other actions, you would rather have a Silver.

Patron can be drawn dead.

Gondola is the first true example of a strict Silver+ for $4, although there are reasons you might still end up getting Silver in games with Gondola (Silver gainers, avoiding opponent Stowaway triggers).

The rule made sense because it wasn't strategically interesting to have Silver+ on the board. When you have $4 and it isn't really a decision whether to buy Silver or the Silver+, so  in a way it's a waste of a slot. I don't think Drachma has that problem - it plays differently and you'll be thinking about shuffles and so forth.

I think Stowaway would have been better than Sailor for Seaside. It's no more complex than Pirate, and has the fun of interacting with Durations.

Sailor is lots of fun though. Having a few cards you don't like playing with because they're too complex is better than 1E where there are cards you don't like playing with because they're bad, meaningless, or slow the game to a crawl.

Reinforcements - $5
Action - Duration - Attack


Each other player discards down to 3 cards in hand.

The next time anyone plays an Attack, draw until you have 6 cards in hand afterwards.

Might be ok at $4, the way that both Witch and Sea Witch are worth $5 despite the latter doing more, because it will miss reshuffles. Reinforcements might end up sitting around for a while.

I considered $4.  It's tricky to judge because if you're able to play multiple copies on a turn, only one is stuck in play, and copies beyond the first provide both draw and virtual coin, a rare and powerful combination.  I also kind of want to avoid $4, because then it's more accessible and useful in the opening, but it gives a huge advantage to the player that happens to play it first.  At $5 it competes with so many other cards that are better for the early game, so you really have to think about when the best time to get it is.

It probably is fine at $5 because Militia is a strong $4. But it's not particularly spammable (main risk with $4s) as both the draw and the attack don't stack.  You really want to play exactly one every turn. It's also not particularly strong in the opening (probably weaker than Militia).

Cool design at any rate.


Reinforcements - $5
Action - Duration - Attack


Each other player discards down to 3 cards in hand.

The next time anyone plays an Attack, draw until you have 6 cards in hand afterwards.

Might be ok at $4, the way that both Witch and Sea Witch are worth $5 despite the latter doing more, because it will miss reshuffles. Reinforcements might end up sitting around for a while.


Town council. Set it up, and the next copy rewards you for the amount of cards you played in between. Synergizes with duration cards, forever-in-play cards, and engines that can reliably play a lot of cards in between villages. Price could be changed idk if $4 is balanced.

Should be "any other" town councils, or else the card does nothing except for edge cases.

It will suck to have more than 2. Perhaps make the +2 Actions unconditional?

Action/Duration - $4
+1 Buy
The next time you gain a Curse, return it to its pile, gain a card costing up to $4 to your hand, and you may put a card from your hand onto your deck.

Shaman + Swindler can sometimes end up helping your opponent, depending on what cards it trashes, since they can get the trashed card back on their next turn

It's especially bad in a game with Feodum. Trash a Feodum, your opponent gets 3 Silvers plus a $4, and then they get their Feodum right back, so you're basically just increasing the value of your opponent's Feoda

It's a real gamble because it's stronger than usual when it hits Curse, Copper and Estate. You probably still want a Swindler but it's a good candidate for late game trashing.

Thinking of when Traits are at their worst.

  • Cheap Band of Misfits - Still good in some boards but there's more of a chance it can't play anything. Other cards Cheap arguably makes worse: Border Village, Falconer, Berserker, Rats, Raze, Fortress. (Not putting Silver Mine as being $4 more than makes up for not being able to get $4 Treasures with it).
  • Cursed Port - Turns a safe gain into a big gamble, and the Loots don't care about Port's +Actions. 
  • Fated Merchant Camp - It's optional so a card is never worse for being Fated, but sometimes it's not particularly useful. With Merchant Camp, if it's not topdecked there's a reason for it, so the trait ends up being an "are you sure?".
  • Fawning Chapel - Once you're getting Provinces, you probably don't have much use for Chapel. At least Rats is a cantrip that could save a late hand. So it's kind of junk.
  • Friendly Chapel - An optional effect, so can't ever be worse. So what's a card you don't want that many copies of? Where you're likely to need to decline the "Friendly" prompt most often? Edit: Agree with joefarebrother that the false friend that's Friendly Trail is annoying.
  • Hasty Rats - As soon as you buy one, you're going to gain one every turn until the pile runs out and be forced to trash a lot. Maybe not too bad (it's like Cathedral) but having less control over Rats isn't a good thing. Beggar is another card you really don't want to be forced to play.

    Edit: Hasty Treasure Maps are pretty much worthless - getting one into your deck requires the same trick as getting a Siren without trashing an Action, and then you have to line it up. Good find by Ethan.
  • Inherited Royal Blacksmith - People don't buy this early for a reason. Watch out for misclicks.
  • Inspiring Rebuild - What's a non terminal card that also doesn't really appreciate other cards in its deck?
  • Nearby Overlord - No real downside, so what's a card where you're unlikely to make use of the on buy +buy? One where you're likely to be in debt after buying, that's much harder to gain through methods other than buying.
  • Patient Swamp Shacks - Can actually be extremely useful with Prepare or Journey. But nothing to make you curse your deck order like seeing the option to play a dead card for little effect next turn.
  • Pious Distant Lands - It's optional, so what's relatively expensive that you mainly want late game.
  • Reckless Tactician - Very thematic. It doesn't work any better than a normal Tactician and you lose it after one battle.
  • Rich Poor House - A paradox reflected in gameplay. You get a free Silver that the Poor House doesn't want to see.
  • Shy Cursed Village? - Surprisingly not Shy Lab or Lost City etc. as you can draw the Shy Lab to play it "again". I thought Cursed Village as something where you probably aren't getting much benefit from discarding it but even then it might be good to do that in some kind of disappearing money engine. These optional ones are hard.
  • Tireless Hireling etc.- Tireless can be meaningless. I really wanted to think of an anti-synergy - a card you want evenly spaced in your deck rather than clumped together (e.g. Throne Room and King's Court). But there's a lot of ways those cards benefit too. So useless Tireless it is.

Best pairing I could think of for each Trait:

  • Cheap Seer - Seer is a great card to gain lots of, which is much easier at $4 (e.g. with Workshop variants), and now it can draw itself
  • Cursed Tiara - Would be Watchtower but Watchtower and Cursed (something else) is likely as good or better. Best Cursed card with Watchtower on the board is probably King's Cache. Tiara wouldn't be far behind it. Even on its own once you have a Tiara in play you can buy cursed Tiaras to topdeck a Tiara and the Loot (or do that multiple times with Tiara and probably the Loot's +buy) and continue the cycle. Shame about the Curses though.
  • Fated Augurs - Play a Herb Gatherer every turn (hopefully to good effect), and as you do that make the bottom decking with Sibyl more like discarding junk. Makes it easier enough to throw Sorcerers into the mix.
  • Fawning Island Shepherd- With Fawning Island, Provinces come with a card that can take it out of circulation while keeping the points. Great for golden decks. Sanctuary would also do this just as well but giving Island the nod for "most improved (and the 2 bonus VP)".
     Edit: Also remembered Rebuild still exists. If you're playing Rebuild, more free Rebuilds as you're doing the thing is very powerful.
    Edit 2: Forgot Shepherd and agree with grrgrrgrr to give it the nod. A great card to appear in your deck as soon as you start greening. Same with other sifters (especially Forum) and Groundskeeper
  • Friendly Village Green Groundskeeper - EDIT: Village Green doesn't play on discard during Clean Up as grrgrrgrr pointed out. Groundskeeper works well as a card you want lots of eventually where the biggest pain is buying them, so the cloning of Friendly works great.
  • Hasty Experiment - For your next shuffle, instead of being a net +2 cards, it's a net +4 Cards and +3 Actions and guaranteed to be at the start of your next turn.
  • Inherited Altar - Less sure about this one. Trashing is great at the opening and Altar helps you get lots of 5s quickly. Maybe inherited Chapel is better though - early trashing is amazing.
  • Inspiring Black Market Cultist - Edit: As mxdata points out, you have plenty of chances to hit a card with chaining Cultists. If you're both going for cultist, even playing Ruins non terminally can be an advantage. Black Market has plenty of chances to be non terminal but isn't as spammable and would rather some cheap non terminal or terminal draw in the kingdom is Inspiring instead.
  • Nearby Peddler - Spammable and not too hard to get to $0 for an instant Pileout. Can also be done with Nearby Wayfarers, but Peddler gets the nod for being non-terminal.
  • Patient Smithy - Or any Terminal Draw. Patient cards can't be drawn dead, so now Terminal Draw cards are spammable.
  • Pious Experiment - Buy in the opening with your $3 hand to trash your estates, and a nice cheap double trasher in general. Experiment has the edge over Port due to cost, usefulness in the opening, and the pile not running out.
  • Reckless Scheme or Merchant Camp  - Reckless Scheme because it's a Lost City that topdecks itself and still does the job of Scheme. Insanely powerful card. 4 Reckless Merchant Camps and you can buy a province every turn - though it's vulnerable to Militia and friends and a lot of redundant +Actions.
  • Rich Sauna - Came to mind as instead of opening Silver/Sauna, you can open Rich Sauna and something else. Rich Merchant is also nice.
  • Shy Faithful Hound - A Hireling, then double Hireling you can open with that doesn't cost an Action to play (and softens discard attacks). Shy Village Green is also nice as a spammable card with no downside to discarding.
  • Tireless Mystic - Easy guessing and stacking. Vassal also works great with Tireless cards but Tireless Vassals might end in dud turns or limit what else you can play.

Piazza will play Crew or a Tireless card every turn.

Though in the game I found this in it was an anti-synergy as my Tireless Lookout nuked my deck (I already overtrashed) and there was nothing I could do about it.

Mine would perhaps work at $4 or if it were non-terminal, or both. Does being able to Mine Actions really push it from $4/$5 into $6 territory? I seriously doubt it, that is an edge case.
I would try this at $4 and $5.

Mine is a decent card when Platinum is available. $6 makes it harder to get your first Gold Mine but you can turn Silvers into Gold Mines and Gold Mines into Platinum. I added the Action trashing so it's more useful late game. Silver Mine is a $5 card that gains silvers to hand in most games without copper trashing. If it's too weak at $6 I'd add +$1 and/or allow it to trash any card.

I've been meaning to post "3rd editions" of all the sets for some time - incorporating my own designs as well as other fan cards as a tribute to this community where I've spent the last 11 years

The year of Dominion that was 2022 kept pushing back my plans, especially with the new 2nd editions. But 2023 looks like a good year to get it together.

The premise is that each set would have exactly 500 cards. Most sets would expand. Each set has at least one type of landscape in it to fill out the box. For example Events are now in the base set. I also want to include everything in the base set you would need that isn't a card - so there are cubes and tokens which are used for some base set Events (cubes for tracking "once per game" events). Some cards are removed, and their "replacements" (in the vein of the official 2nd editions) might not be in the same set.

There are a few other rule changes. One of them is that games with a Prosperity card are guaranteed to have Colonies and Platinums in them. So here's my "fix" for Mine (remembering that every game with this card in it includes Platinums)

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