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Author Topic: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown  (Read 1604 times)

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blueblimp

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10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« on: March 15, 2023, 05:31:44 pm »
+11

Today is the 10th anniversary of the day isotropic Dominion shut down, on 2013-03-15.

Though I had played Dominion before IRL, isotropic offered a new and interesting way to play the game. IRL, I would experience Dominion as a moderate-paced game with 3+ players, generally with nothing too fancy as far as strategy. On isotropic, it became a relatively fast-paced 2-player competitive game, with increased possibilities for engines, depending on kingdom. (Ambassador stands out as a card that really comes into its own in such a setting.)

Adding to the interest was drheld's deck tracker extension, which, by facilitating making play and buy decisions based on the contents of my deck, opened up far more tactical and strategic calculations. The three elements (Dominion, isotropic, drheld) combined together into more than the sum of their parts.

After isotropic shut down, for years I would occasionally feel the desire to play a game on it again for nostalgia's sake. I don't feel that anymore. (I might have outgrown interest in competitive games in general.)

What has happened with the three elements since?

Dominion: I played it IRL casually occasionally for some time after, which kind of worked as long as we used new cards (to neutralize the advantage of my online experience). Eventually the game developed in a more complex direction and I lost interest. I don't mean that as a knock on the game: Donald X always explained that continuing to make expansions would necessarily involve more complexity, so the newer expansions are intended for the players who want that complexity.

Computer Dominion: After years of a bad situation that I'll leave undiscussed, it seems to be in a good place now. I've only played a little of the current online implementation, but it seems arguably better than isotropic, not necessarily in every aspect, but overall. The in-development mobile implementation is far better than isotropic ever was on mobile.

Deck Tracking: Whenever a new computer implementation would launch, deck tracking wouldn't exist, and I haven't been following since then. A quick Google search shows that there have been controversies. If there's still no way to mutually agree to play deck-tracked games, that's sad.

In conclusion, the late isotropic era was an especially ephemeral entry in the already ephemeral arena of online gaming, arising from the differing visions of three people (Donald X, dougz, drheld). It's probably my favorite online game of all time, and it'll probably never exist again, but that doesn't bother me anymore since I probably wouldn't enjoy playing it today anyway. Just as well to remain a memory, I suppose.
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ehunt

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2023, 09:17:27 pm »
+3

i don't have anything to add but really appreciated this. it was a huge part of many of our lives. huger than it really should have been, if we had other things to be doing...
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Ethan

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2023, 11:02:18 pm »
+1

Actually, the multi-platform Dominion has the option about deck tracking. You can choose if cards/points/deck & discard of each player is visible.
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Gherald

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2023, 05:36:01 am »
+2

Just as well to remain a memory, I suppose.

This was a triumph. I'm making a note here: "Huge success"
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Awaclus

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2023, 05:41:35 am »
0

Deck Tracking: Whenever a new computer implementation would launch, deck tracking wouldn't exist, and I haven't been following since then. A quick Google search shows that there have been controversies. If there's still no way to mutually agree to play deck-tracked games, that's sad.

Technically there isn't, but also you can just ctrl+F the log and pretty easily see how many copies of a card you and your opponent have, since the log shows the full game.
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GendoIkari

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2023, 12:49:53 pm »
+2

Just finished playing through Portal and Portal 2 for the first time, and can't help but think of Iso's last day whenever I hear that song.
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greatexpectations

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2023, 10:10:19 pm »
+1

oh man, 10 years! isotropic really was wonderful. i too have had the itch to play again over the years but it never lasts - probably for the better. there were way too many late nights of 'well just one more game!'
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Davio

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2023, 07:31:53 am »
+4

Ah yes, I remember how addictive it was and how proud of myself I was to become a top X (don't even remember what it was, top 10, 25 maybe) player in the world with a rating of I don't know 45 or so? Of course that didn't come close to Stef's 50+ rating. Then again I beat Stef in the Dutch championship so there. But then Stef started the new and improved Dominion online game so I guess we all ended up as winners. :)

Take Dominion, an abstract game, make it as abstract as possible, and you end up with Isotropic. It was beautiful in its simplicity.
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segura

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #8 on: April 01, 2023, 03:18:06 am »
+1

Dominion is not an abstract game.
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Valendale

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2023, 07:25:22 pm »
0

Dominion is not an abstract game.

April Fools?
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Awaclus

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2023, 08:05:09 pm »
0

Dominion is not an abstract game.

April Fools?

Why would a true statement be April Fools? Dominion has RNG and hidden information.
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Jack Rudd

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2023, 12:18:23 am »
+1

Yes, but so does contract bridge, and I'd usually consider that an abstract.
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IsotropicWasBetter

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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #12 on: June 14, 2023, 04:31:00 am »
+2

#isowasbetter
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Re: 10th anniversary of isotropic Dominion shutdown
« Reply #13 on: June 14, 2023, 02:59:10 pm »
0

Yes, but so does contract bridge, and I'd usually consider that an abstract.

E.g. the International Abstract Games Organization would not, and neither would the Mind Sports Organization.
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Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way

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