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Author Topic: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop  (Read 6734 times)

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ednever

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COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« on: April 11, 2012, 03:09:44 pm »
+2

This is my first article. Comments and criticisms very much appreciated.
-=-=-=-=-

Develop is a very under-powered card, but it works like magic with Vineyards and the right set of Kingdom cards.

First, Develop can be used to multiply your actions. Turn an action into 2 actions - worth an extra 1/3rd of a VP per Vineyard you end up with.

Second, and more importantly, Develop solves one of the biggest challenges with Vineyards - when to green. You want to be buying lots of actions, but unless you create a deck that draws itself every turn or you buy more than one Potion you have to cycle your deck once for every Vineyard you buy. If you wait to buy that Potion (if there aren't any other Potion cards in the Kingdom) it takes even longer. You might get Vineyards up to 10 VP/card, but you can't buy them fast enough to compete with a treasure heavy deck that just buys Provinces.

Develop solves this problem, by converting your $3 and $5 actions into Potions (and a second action) and - this is key - dropping them on top of your deck. A few develops and you should be able to buy one or more Vineyards a turn going into the end game. If Border Village is in play it's even better - convert a $5 into a Potion and a Border Village, re-pick up the original Action. Next turn: Buy a Vineyard - that is now worth 1/3rd of a VP more with your extra action.

The usual caveats for Develop apply:
1- Don't buy the card on the opening, and only use it on higher value cards (it's not for killing curses and transforming Estates)
2- You obviously need Action cards at all the main price points (even better if there are $6 and $7 as well)
3- Best is when there are combos $2 apart that you can drop ready made on top of your deck (Smithy/Hamlet, Border Village/Smithy, Wharf/Village, Torturer/Fishing Village, Kings Court/Wharf, etc.)

Develop in general is not a very good card, but when you can see the Kingdoms when it works you can have a lot of fun and your opponent won't even see it coming. If you do it right you won't have to buy a Potion until late in the game so your opponent may not even realize you are going for Vineyards. It's entirely likely he chokes on Provinces when he discovers too late you won't be buying any.

Works especially well with:
- Good action cards at all price points
- Cantrips/Villages you don't mind stocking up on
- Cards only good in the early game (i.e., Sea Hag, Moneylender)
- Good copper trashers
- +Buys (to pick up extra actions for Vineyard and for buying Vineyard + an Action in the end game)

Has issues with :
- vs. Strategies that don't choke on Provinces (Goons, Bishop, Alchemist, etc.)


This Kingdom was not ideal for the combo, but it still allowed for a come from behind victory:
http://councilroom.com/game?game_id=game-20120405-105631-f84f5294.html

For more about the two cards stand-alone:
Vineyard: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=310.0
Develop: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=1664.0

Ed
« Last Edit: April 11, 2012, 06:20:30 pm by ednever »
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2012, 03:44:11 pm »
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Really cool combo. The only question I have is about the first "usual caveats". I'm not sure that it is a usual caveat. Typically in a develop deck (as with any workshop-variant deck other than HoP), I would buy the develop at the outset. It gains cards to build your deck with. Why wouldn't you want it asap?
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jotheonah

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2012, 04:58:22 pm »
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Seems like you'd want to watch for +buy cards at $2 (Herbalist, Hamlet) and $6 (uh... Border Village to gain +buy cards?) to ensure that you can pick up an action in addition to your vineyard.
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Voltgloss

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2012, 05:54:35 pm »
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Seems like you'd want to watch for +buy cards at $2 (Herbalist, Hamlet) and $6 (uh... Border Village to gain +buy cards?) to ensure that you can pick up an action in addition to your vineyard.
Or get your +buy earlier in the game (i.e., the Barons in the sample game), especially as doing so will help you pick up Develops midgame without losing tempo.

The strategy benefits from having a $3 or $5 cantrip (Upgrade in the sample game) on which you don't mind stocking up, to ultimately convert en masse into $2-or-$6/Potion combos.  And as the sample game shows, even the simple Gold/Potion combo - while not ideal, certainly - can still work as long as you have +buy around to put those Golds to work buying you extra actions in conjunction with your Vineyards.

Also, re: buying Develop early:  it's only really effective at building your deck if you can use it on something that will cough up a two-card combo.  That excludes Estates (which just gets you a single $3 card - just too slow early game) and Coppers (which get you nothing at all).  So you don't want Develops around until you have a sufficient density of $3-or-higher fodder for the Develops to hit.
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ednever

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2012, 06:11:16 pm »
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HiveMindEmulator:
See this string for a discussion on Develop http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=1664.0

Develop is not a very good initial buy for trashing. At the best it trashes a single copper per turn or changes a single Estate into a Silver (and puts it on the deck). You are almost always better off buying a Silver in your opening. Some example first shuffle hands (where x is the develop or the silver, 't' is the $4 terminal from your other purchase (say Militia), and c/e are estate/copper). The simple result of the X being a develop vs it being a silver:

Xcccc - Trash a copper buy a silver, vs. buy a gold; Winner- Silver
Xccce - Estate to a Silver, buy a Silver, vs. Buy a $5; Winner- Silver
Xccee - Estate to a Silver buy a $2, vs. Buy a $4; Winner- Unclear. Depends of $4 and $2 cards
Xceee - Estate to a Silver, vs. Buy a Silver; Winner- Develop
Xtccc - Terminal to a Silver+$5+$3, vs. Attack+Gold; Winner- Likely Develop ($3+$4+$5 vs. $4+$6+Attack)
Xtcce - Terminal to Silver+$5+$2, vs. Attack+Gold; Winner- Likely Develop on a good $2 board ($2+$4+$5 vs. $4+$6+Attack)
Xtcee - Terminal to Silver+$5, vs. Attack + $5; Winner- Likely Silver ($3+$5 vs $4+$5+Attack)
Xteee - Terminal to Silver+$5, vs. Attack + $4; Winner- Depends on the kingdom ($3+$5 vs. $4+$4+Attack)

Someone can calculate the probability of those openings but eye-balling it it looks like Silver wins most of the time unless there is a collision and the $4 cards are not very good (ie. The only $4 is Scout). But if the only $4 is Scout then I'm not sure a Develop strategy is good to begin with.

-=-=-=-
Jotheonah:
Yes. +buy cards are great for Vineyards (although not as necessary with you have this combo with Develop). I will edit the original posts to include links to the stand-alone Vineyards and Develop articles.
Here is the Vineyards one: http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=310.0

Where +buy comes in very handy with the combo is the ability to (1) Pick up Develops later in the game, and (2) Buy Vineyards and and Actions in the endgame.


Ed
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ednever

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2012, 06:22:53 pm »
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Voltgloss:
Great point on the "Cantrips you don't mind stocking up on". I added it to the original article.

I think Upgrade actually works particularly well with this combo as it can both kill your coppers, and convert up your other cards so that they can be re-Developed (Militia->Upgrade+Develop, Upgrade Develop to Militia and do it again...)
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 07:00:35 pm »
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Develop is not a very good initial buy for trashing. At the best it trashes a single copper per turn or changes a single Estate into a Silver (and puts it on the deck). You are almost always better off buying a Silver in your opening. Some example first shuffle hands (where x is the develop or the silver, 't' is the $4 terminal from your other purchase (say Militia), and c/e are estate/copper). The simple result of the X being a develop vs it being a silver:

Xcccc - Trash a copper buy a silver, vs. buy a gold; Winner- Silver
Xccce - Estate to a Silver, buy a Silver, vs. Buy a $5; Winner- Silver
Xccee - Estate to a Silver buy a $2, vs. Buy a $4; Winner- Unclear. Depends of $4 and $2 cards
Xceee - Estate to a Silver, vs. Buy a Silver; Winner- Develop
Xtccc - Terminal to a Silver+$5+$3, vs. Attack+Gold; Winner- Likely Develop ($3+$4+$5 vs. $4+$6+Attack)
Xtcce - Terminal to Silver+$5+$2, vs. Attack+Gold; Winner- Likely Develop on a good $2 board ($2+$4+$5 vs. $4+$6+Attack)
Xtcee - Terminal to Silver+$5, vs. Attack + $5; Winner- Likely Silver ($3+$5 vs $4+$5+Attack)
Xteee - Terminal to Silver+$5, vs. Attack + $4; Winner- Depends on the kingdom ($3+$5 vs. $4+$4+Attack)
This doesn't really tell the whole story. While Develop is not a generally good opening, I think it's good for a Develop deck. And it's at least not obvious that it's bad. What you're not taking into account when you list all those outcomes is that you eventually want a Develop or 2 in your deck, preferably sooner, rather than later. For example, it's not completely obvious that getting early $5 cards or even Golds is more valuable than having 2 Develops in the deck before the second shuffle. While Developing an Estate into a Silver isn't powerful enough the make Develop worth it in most games, Developing one into a Develop so that you have more Develops and fewer un-developable cards (Estates) for later play does provide a greater improvement.
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Powerman

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 07:37:52 pm »
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While develop might give slightly worse buys early compared to silver, it would seem to me like games would last longer with only one player going for the provinces, so turning the Estates into a 3 Action (Village, Great Hall, Scheme etc.) while not normally good, could work out in the lengthened an action heavy deck?  To me it would seem like a decent opening buy if there were no better actions, and almost certainly better in the long haul than silver, even if slightly worse short term.
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ednever

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #8 on: April 12, 2012, 12:45:27 pm »
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You guys could be right on picking up Develop early, but I'm not convinced. There is a lot of value in Developing $4 and $5 cards - and a silver (or a +$2 Action) helps you get that Develop-fodder sooner rather than later.

Imagine the two route:

Route 1:
Develop Estate to Village
Develop Village to Monument+Hamlet
Develop Monument to Wharf+Village

Route 2:
Buy Wharf
Buy Develop
Develop Wharf to Nobles+Monument


I'd love to be able to definitively answer the question, but I'm not sure how. I doubt a simulator could play the strategy properly - there are just too many decision points.

I tried playing a solitaire game, but even that was tough - I imagine the other cards in the Kingdom would make a big difference, and you would have play many many games given the amount of randomness that happens through an entire game with this strategy (and the games are long too).

Any thoughts on how to answer the question, "Should you open Silver or Develop?"

Ed
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eHalcyon

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #9 on: April 12, 2012, 01:16:45 pm »
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You guys could be right on picking up Develop early, but I'm not convinced. There is a lot of value in Developing $4 and $5 cards - and a silver (or a +$2 Action) helps you get that Develop-fodder sooner rather than later.

Imagine the two route:

Route 1:
Develop Estate to Village
Develop Village to Monument+Hamlet
Develop Monument to Wharf+Village

Route 2:
Buy Wharf
Buy Develop
Develop Wharf to Nobles+Monument


I'd love to be able to definitively answer the question, but I'm not sure how. I doubt a simulator could play the strategy properly - there are just too many decision points.

I tried playing a solitaire game, but even that was tough - I imagine the other cards in the Kingdom would make a big difference, and you would have play many many games given the amount of randomness that happens through an entire game with this strategy (and the games are long too).

Any thoughts on how to answer the question, "Should you open Silver or Develop?"

Ed

In your Route 2, you still have those starting Estates to deal with.  Developing them away as per Route 1 can make it easier to draw your Develop with the higher cost cards you want to develop, whereas in Route 2 your Wharf and Develop might not collide.  Additionally, in your Route 1 you can still buy things!  So maybe in the turn you develop Estate into Village, you also buy another Village or a Silver.

I think it really depends on the board. :)
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gorgonstar

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2012, 03:29:14 am »
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Opening with silver gives you maximum flexibility.  You can switch strategies if you want to.  It also disguises your intentions about going into develop later.

Opening with develop locks you into a strategy, which might make it easier for your opponent to counter.  Your astute opponent might then know that you are going vineyards and plan accordingly.
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ednever

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Re: COMBO: Vineyards / Develop
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2012, 12:24:36 pm »
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Just played a Develop/Vineyards match (with Islands - which is also a nice Vineyards partner).

As I started using develops to drop potions on top of my deck, my opponent wrote:
"I love how you're using Develops to get Potions for the endgame...a great lesson for me."

Thought I might post the game here and revive this thread to put it back top of mind. I'm beginning to think this combo, if played correctly is even better than I originally though back in April, but it's a lot more unknown than most of the others.

Here's the latest game:
http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201211/02/game-20121102-091915-a3dfdf50.html

Ed
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