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Author Topic: Taking the Road Less Traveled  (Read 1778 times)

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Young Nick

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Taking the Road Less Traveled
« on: October 10, 2012, 01:45:09 am »
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Here I present to you two games in which I went after a rather unorthodox strategy. One ended with a win, the other a loss. I am not sure what the optimal strategy was for either, but I sure as hell had fun going after what will look like strange strategies.

Game 1: YN 29 - 45 Mergus. Cards in supply: Cache, Caravan, Crossroads, Golem, Herbalist, Mine, Moat, Potion, Stash, Tribute, and University.

I see this and think of how weak the board is. I end up going for Universities to gain Mines and Caravans and to get Golem for support. Mergus (with a 5/2 split) goes for Mine/Caravan/Tribute/Crossroads and doesn't buy a treasure the whole game. I don't know how he did it, but he was one Mined Silver away from turning all of his initial Copper into Golds.

I wanted to have my Golems hunt for Mines, but dipped into Caravans a bit too hard to make that realistically possible. Also, more Golems would have been necessary. I do believe my ideal strategy (not the one executed) would have been better. I doubt there is anything much better than either of our strategies. This game wasn't innately exotic, but felt most peculiar.

Game 2: YN 42 - 30 noon. Cards in supply: Coppersmith, Fishing Village, Haven, Jester, Mining Village, Philosopher's Stone, Potion, Tactician, Vault, Venture, and Wishing Well.

I know what you are thinking: "Young Nick, Vault/Tactician is best here. I swear. Havens help to set-up the combo, too!" I here you. But that's not what I did. And what I did was awesome. With a Wishing Well/Coppersmith opening, I picked up some more of those and a few Tacticians. Coppersmith loves the big Tactician hand which allows for one to play two Coppersmiths and purchase two Provinces. Unlike Mergus in the last game, I did buy some treasure. However, the only ones I bought were a few Copper so that I had enough. noon went for the more conventional strategy, but got into the Vault business a bit too late for my liking. He also did not buy any treasure in this game.

Anyway, 17 turns later, I was looking at 6 Provinces and a Duchy. Could have I done a bit better? Probably. But part of Dominion is taking the road less traveled, which is what I did in these two unorthodox games.
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Asklepios

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Re: Taking the Road Less Traveled
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2012, 06:56:58 am »
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Please take the below post as constructive critique rather than an attack. I've added a +1 to your post as these were amongst the most enjoyable game reports I've read in a while

Game 1: YN 29 - 45 Mergus. Cards in supply: Cache, Caravan, Crossroads, Golem, Herbalist, Mine, Moat, Potion, Stash, Tribute, and University.

Funky set there.

Personally I would have gone for multiple Caravans and one Mine.

Something like this:
http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201210/16/game-20121016-034618-6c5beb5d.html

Might be lacking complexity, but for me its where my instincts go: find a way to frequently draw that terminal action, and race towards $8 and provinces as quick as possible. University and Golem usually look like distractions to me unless there are strong $5 cards present, and Tribute is just too random to be consistently useful in most games.

Love of simplicity is probably why I'm a mid-tier player. I can play a consistent strong game that will beat weaker players, but I don't build those genius complex decks that the top players have mastered.

Game 2: YN 42 - 30 noon. Cards in supply: Coppersmith, Fishing Village, Haven, Jester, Mining Village, Philosopher's Stone, Potion, Tactician, Vault, Venture, and Wishing Well.

Interesting! I would have gone a similar route to your opponent, minus the Jester, as it was rarely going to be worthwhile, given that you WANTED copper, and had telegraphed your intentions by opening Coppersmith. My opening of choice would be silver/silver, as awesome though fishing village is, its less likely to hit $5 early than silver, and the key early acquisition is Tactician, regardless of approach.

Something like this:

http://dominion.isotropic.org/gamelog/201210/16/game-20121016-035427-59c1eb9c.html

3 provinces by turn 11, 5 provinces by Turn 14, which against your play as is would have been 5:3.

Obviously solo games aren't entirely comparable, though Jester is weak enough here to mostly disregard, IMHO. To me, your opponent slowed himself down by buying Fishing Villages first over Silver, and wasted Turn 3 and Turn 10 on a Mining Village when Fishing Villages would have served him better, and on Turn 12 was insane to buy a Jester when he could have got a Duchy, or if the game hadn't got the tempo it had, another Vault.

As to Coppersmith/Tactician, I think thats extremely solid, though its less consistent than Vault/Tactician because you have to draw the Tactician off a five card draw, whereas with Vault/Tactician you have a 12 card draw to find the Tactician.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2012, 07:49:49 am by Asklepios »
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jotheonah

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Re: Taking the Road Less Traveled
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2012, 07:19:31 am »
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Unless you're very unlucky, your first turn with Coppersmith in hand will likely get you the 5 you need for the Tact buy, so I'm not sure Silver/Silver is a good opening. Wishing Well is perfect for this kind of a deck, which is simple enough that you should have a good chance of guessing what's next. (or wishing for the other Coppersmith during your Tact hand.
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Asklepios

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Re: Taking the Road Less Traveled
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2012, 07:48:34 am »
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Good point, I guess Coppersmith is actually a pretty nice way to get the $5 too...

I'd be curious to see this simulated, as I remain unconvinced that Coppersmith/Tactician is stronger than Vault/Tactician in this kingdom, or almost any kingdom. I guess the addition of Black Market might swing it in Coppersmith's favour, but otherwise the every-other-turn thing makes it a no-go for me.

Also, I wonder where a combination of both fits in? Coppersmith to get that early $5 and to capitalise on the first Tactician play, then transition to Vault/Tactician?
« Last Edit: October 16, 2012, 07:51:17 am by Asklepios »
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Young Nick

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Re: Taking the Road Less Traveled
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2012, 11:50:50 am »
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Honestly, I think Silver/Silver is probably fine for getting to $5 and that the Coppersmith will only become dead later on.

As for the first game, I think that my type of strategy is something that a mid 20's player would do and fail at. Your type of strategy is one that a mid 30's player would do and succeed with. But my type of strategy is one that maybe a mid 40's player would be able to execute perfectly in order to beat out the conventional strategy.
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: Taking the Road Less Traveled
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2012, 02:19:17 pm »
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Game 1 I agree with Asklepios. Keep it simple. There are no really strong cards and no attacks. A simple Caravan strategy should be really fast. Not sure if you want Mine or if you'd rather have (maybe in addition) Herbalist to help get extra Crossroads and re-use Golds, but going Potion doesn't seem like it would be fast enough to do anything good.

Game 2 I like what you did. With no trashing and no good sifting, Vault+Tact is not really going to be that reliable. You're probably better off going for the big burst turns with Coppersmith. Haven also combos nicely with Coppersmith, letting you either save your Coppersmith for a big turn, or push yet another Copper into your Coppersmith hand.
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Asklepios

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Re: Taking the Road Less Traveled
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2012, 04:01:53 am »
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Hmmm, Haven does seem very useful in that context.
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