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Author Topic: Cards that "play or modify" Durations  (Read 8553 times)

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crj

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Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« on: April 11, 2013, 09:18:36 am »
+1

Hi all,

In Dominion, we have actions which cause another action to be played, possibly multiple times. We also have Durations, with effects that linger to the following turn.

And we have lots of discussions about how they interact. I've found at least:...all containing statements by Donald X, plus remarks by others with varying degrees of definitiveness.

As I understand it, the way things stand at the moment is:
  • "If you play or modify a Duration card with another card, that other card also stays in your play area until it is no longer doing anything." (The actual rule.)
  • This does not apply to cards which "play or modify" the card which "plays or modifies" the Duration -- if you play Throne Room, choose Throne Room, then choose Wharf, only the second TR stays out.
  • The rule should be construed as "until you clean up and it is no longer doing anything". If you Throne Room a Haven, you don't get to discard the Throne Room (and possibly cycle your deck enough to re-draw it) immediately the two Havens come in at the start of your next turn.
  • Golem is "no longer doing anything" the moment it's played the actions you drew.
  • Tactician only has its effect once even if doubled or tripled, so a Throne Room is "no longer doing anything" and gets discarded during clean-up.
  • Conversely a Throne Room used on an Outpost is still "doing something" according to the BGG rules FAQ?
  • If you Procession a Duration, the Procession stays out, but the Duration gets trashed for gain this turn. The Procession is your reminder that something is afoot next turn.
  • If you Procession a Throne Room then choose a Duration, the Procession trashing the Throne Room takes precedence over the "stays in your play area until it is no longer doing anything" rule; the Throne Room is trashed for gain this turn.
  • If you use a Band of Misfits as a "play or modify" card, or as a Duration, it stays out precisely as long as the card it's impersonating would have done.
  • You have Durations "in play" until clean-up at the end of the following turn (for the purposes of Peddler, etc.)
  • However, you have not "played" it on the following turn (for the purposes of Conspirator)
  • Throne Rooms, Kings' Courts, Processions, Bands of Misfits, etc. that are left out are "in play" but not "played", similarly.
Is that all correct?

One question I've never seen asked: what happens if you Procession an Outpost or Tactician? (On the one hand, maybe Procession stays out if and only if a Throne Room would have done; on the other, maybe the Procession is "doing something" by marking that there's a trashed duration to apply next turn.)



More generally, am I the only person who thinks this all feels unduly gnarly? I see a three-way conflict between:
  • Consistency and clarity of the rules
  • Having cards cleared up if they serve no further purpose
  • Giving players the best chance possible of remembering what's supposed to happen at the start of their next turn

I can see two simpler alternative rules:
  • Everything is cleaned up at the end of your turn, including Durations and cards which played or modified them.
  • Any card which causes a Duration to be played is itself a Duration until it leaves play, and all Durations (even Tacticians on which you discarded nothing) stay in play until your next turn.
The first one causes obvious memory problems. But what if there were "duration proxies" for each kind of Duration? They could be full-size cards, or perhaps mini cards or some other kind of token. When you play a Duration you stick a duration proxy in front of you; at the start of your next turn, you get the benefit. Throne Room a Duration? Place two proxies. Band of Misfits a Duration? Place a proxy corresponding to what you chose. Procession a Duration? Trash the Duration, but leave the proxies standing. Play Tactician; have you discarded any cards? If so, place a Tactician proxy.

The second would mean that if you chain Throne Room -> Throne Room -> Duration, both Throne Rooms stay out. For players like me who lay out the actions they play hierarchically, it just means you leave the entire hierarchy out as-is.

Has anyone tried playing in either of these ways? How much difference do they make to gameplay and/or strategy? My instinct is that the first is by far the tidiest option, it's just a shame it needs several dozen extra game pieces.
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DStu

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2013, 09:33:55 am »
0

Has anyone tried playing in either of these ways? How much difference do they make to gameplay and/or strategy? My instinct is that the first is by far the tidiest option, it's just a shame it needs several dozen extra game pieces.
Welcome.

Won't comment on your list, I think it's more or less correct but I won't guarantee for the details.

@alternative Duration rules.  I think putting them back at the end of the turn also messes with the power levels. Consider Wharf, which already is seen as the best non-attack $5 in the game.  Imagine a deck which can draw itself completely with Wharfs.  At the moment, every Wharf you play a gives you +4cards, but it gives them over two turns, and in the second turn this Wharf can not be played again.  When you put it back directly, you can play it next turn again, which will make it even more powerful.

I don't think the general rule for Durations is much confusing, what is confusing is Outpost and Tactician; I have the impression that the ruling is as it is just because when you follow the general rules it turns out to be like that for these two cards, playing the discard of TR differently for these two probably will not change much, you don't want to throne them anyway.
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crj

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2013, 10:05:31 am »
0

Welcome.

Oh. Yeah. The system shows that I'm new around here, doesn't it.

Thanks - I've been lurking for ages!

@alternative Duration rules.  I think putting them back at the end of the turn also messes with the power levels. Consider Wharf, which already is seen as the best non-attack $5 in the game.

Yeah. Wharf's the biggie. Nobody would mind so much if it was a Fishing Village or Caravan. It doesn't feel like a completely harmless change that could be made in isolation.

Maybe Rio Grande could include a deck of Wharves priced at $6 when they sell the duration proxies? (-8

I don't think the general rule for Durations is much confusing, what is confusing is Outpost and Tactician; I have the impression that the ruling is as it is just because when you follow the general rules it turns out to be like that for these two cards, playing the discard of TR differently for these two probably will not change much, you don't want to throne them anyway.

Actually, as a corner case, you might want to TR one. TR->TR->Wharf,Tactician when you don't have a spare action to play the Tactician otherwise, for example.

Processioning an Outpost or Tactician makes a whole lot more sense. And who knows what Guilds will bring?
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DStu

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2013, 10:16:15 am »
0

Yeah. Wharf's the biggie. Nobody would mind so much if it was a Fishing Village or Caravan. It doesn't feel like a completely harmless change that could be made in isolation.
Finshing Villages not as much as Wharfs, but also.  They would essentially be +3actions+2coins in a strong engine.  Caravan would benefit a little, but they could probably stand it. But would get them to a really strong card.
The fact that they are way more likely to miss the reshuffle is a real drawback for Duration cards, and taking away this drawback makes them much stronger.


Quote
Actually, as a corner case, you might want to TR one. TR->TR->Wharf,Tactician when you don't have a spare action to play the Tactician otherwise, for example.
Processioning an Outpost or Tactician makes a whole lot more sense. And who knows what Guilds will bring?
Of course, as always, ignoring edge cases.  Just wanted to say that they are not your primary targets for TRKC, so that does not come up date often, and does not influence their power level that much.
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crj

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2013, 10:36:53 am »
0

Of course, as always, ignoring edge cases.  Just wanted to say that they are not your primary targets for TRKC, so that does not come up date often, and does not influence their power level that much.

In a world where people notice that you can play use Black Market to play out your treasures before discarding, then King's Court -> Golem, then draw Tactician+Moat three times over to end up with +15 Cards, +3 Buy and +3 Actions next turn; in a world where people have actually perpetrated the King's Court, King's Court, Goons, Masquerade trick; in a world where my opponent once got their Bridge engine right and bought half the Colonies in a single turn; I'm paranoid. If the edge case exists, I know people who will play it against me. (-8
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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2013, 03:36:47 pm »
0

Yeah. Wharf's the biggie. Nobody would mind so much if it was a Fishing Village or Caravan. It doesn't feel like a completely harmless change that could be made in isolation.
Well, wharf is maaaaaaaaybe the biggest, though tactician will have something to say about that. And haven, fishing village, and caravan are all also going to have pretty significant jumps.

ftl

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2013, 04:01:10 pm »
0

Hi all,
As I understand it, the way things stand at the moment is:
  • "If you play or modify a Duration card with another card, that other card also stays in your play area until it is no longer doing anything." (The actual rule.)
  • This does not apply to cards which "play or modify" the card which "plays or modifies" the Duration -- if you play Throne Room, choose Throne Room, then choose Wharf, only the second TR stays out.
  • The rule should be construed as "until you clean up and it is no longer doing anything". If you Throne Room a Haven, you don't get to discard the Throne Room (and possibly cycle your deck enough to re-draw it) immediately the two Havens come in at the start of your next turn.
  • Golem is "no longer doing anything" the moment it's played the actions you drew.
  • Tactician only has its effect once even if doubled or tripled, so a Throne Room is "no longer doing anything" and gets discarded during clean-up.
  • Conversely a Throne Room used on an Outpost is still "doing something" according to the BGG rules FAQ?
  • If you Procession a Duration, the Procession stays out, but the Duration gets trashed for gain this turn. The Procession is your reminder that something is afoot next turn.
  • If you Procession a Throne Room then choose a Duration, the Procession trashing the Throne Room takes precedence over the "stays in your play area until it is no longer doing anything" rule; the Throne Room is trashed for gain this turn.
  • If you use a Band of Misfits as a "play or modify" card, or as a Duration, it stays out precisely as long as the card it's impersonating would have done.
  • You have Durations "in play" until clean-up at the end of the following turn (for the purposes of Peddler, etc.)
  • However, you have not "played" it on the following turn (for the purposes of Conspirator)
  • Throne Rooms, Kings' Courts, Processions, Bands of Misfits, etc. that are left out are "in play" but not "played", similarly.
Is that all correct?

I believe everything you have written there is correct.

Quote
One question I've never seen asked: what happens if you Procession an Outpost or Tactician? (On the one hand, maybe Procession stays out if and only if a Throne Room would have done; on the other, maybe the Procession is "doing something" by marking that there's a trashed duration to apply next turn.)

Oh man that's a tough one. I would say that it would do exactly the same thing as a Throne Room would have done, I think. But I'm not 100% sure.

Quote
More generally, am I the only person who thinks this all feels unduly gnarly? I see a three-way conflict between:
  • Consistency and clarity of the rules
  • Having cards cleared up if they serve no further purpose
  • Giving players the best chance possible of remembering what's supposed to happen at the start of their next turn

Yeah. It's also a product of card complexity. If you're just playing Durations, the rules typically do the obvious thing. If you have duration and throne room/kc, they make sense but are sort of weird sometimes. Throw in Procession and durations and it explodes in weirdness because Procession really exposes the fact that rules-wise, the cards have already had all their effects when they were played, and are technically only staying out as a reminder.

Quote
I can see two simpler alternative rules:
  • Everything is cleaned up at the end of your turn, including Durations and cards which played or modified them.
  • Any card which causes a Duration to be played is itself a Duration until it leaves play, and all Durations (even Tacticians on which you discarded nothing) stay in play until your next turn.
The first one causes obvious memory problems.

The second one also causes memory problems. You have to remember whether you discarded something to the tactician, for example. Smaller memory problems, but still.

Quote
But what if there were "duration proxies" for each kind of Duration? They could be full-size cards, or perhaps mini cards or some other kind of token. When you play a Duration you stick a duration proxy in front of you; at the start of your next turn, you get the benefit. Throne Room a Duration? Place two proxies. Band of Misfits a Duration? Place a proxy corresponding to what you chose. Procession a Duration? Trash the Duration, but leave the proxies standing. Play Tactician; have you discarded any cards? If so, place a Tactician proxy.

The second would mean that if you chain Throne Room -> Throne Room -> Duration, both Throne Rooms stay out. For players like me who lay out the actions they play hierarchically, it just means you leave the entire hierarchy out as-is.

Has anyone tried playing in either of these ways? How much difference do they make to gameplay and/or strategy? My instinct is that the first is by far the tidiest option, it's just a shame it needs several dozen extra game pieces.

The proxies are probably the cleanest way. Unfortunately, that would change the balance of all the cards, so they probably wouldn't make for a very good game as they stand right now - presumably if they'd been balanced with this in mind, it would have been better. And in terms of production, it would take almost doubling the number of tokens cards to do with durations.

Really it's probably the way it is because with Seaside only, it's not a big deal. Keeping a card out until next turn is usually intuitive and clear, and there isn't any need to have durations act differently except for a few specific card interactions. There are I think exactly three cards which have confusing interactions: Throne Room, King's Court, and ESPECIALLY Procession oh god Procession. 
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crj

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2013, 06:29:00 am »
+4

There are I think exactly three cards which have confusing interactions: Throne Room, King's Court, and ESPECIALLY Procession oh god Procession.

In line with the notion of "strictly better than", I'd like to introduce the notion of "strictly more confusing than". Interacting with Durations, Procession is strictly more confusing than Throne Room. And Band of Misfits is strictly more confusing than Procession.

Then again, Golem has a confusing lack of interaction. Confusing to me, at least. It feels as though the rules should concentrate on how kinds of card interact, not whether or not the interaction of any particular combination has an observable effect. Perhaps I'm saying that Throne Room et al should have been "Action - Modifier", so the rules could say "when you apply a Modifier to a Duration", leaving no doubt. Then Golem could lack "Modifier" in the same way Masquerade lacks "Attack".

Possession and Outpost do also sometimes have awkward interactions with Duration, just of a different flavour. Then again, Possession has awkward interactions with everything. (I've still not actually played Alchemy; the friend who owns it never brings it along when we play. )-8 )
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Jeebus

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2013, 11:20:08 am »
0

One question I've never seen asked: what happens if you Procession an Outpost or Tactician? (On the one hand, maybe Procession stays out if and only if a Throne Room would have done; on the other, maybe the Procession is "doing something" by marking that there's a trashed duration to apply next turn.)

According to all current rulings, Procession would in all cases act just like a Throne Room (except the part at the end with the trashing and the gaining). So it would only stay in play if the Throne Room would. Procession screws up the "reminder" part of Durations anyway...
« Last Edit: April 16, 2013, 06:03:21 pm by Jeebus »
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Brando Commando

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2013, 02:48:24 pm »
0


Then again, Golem has a confusing lack of interaction. Confusing to me, at least. It feels as though the rules should concentrate on how kinds of card interact, not whether or not the interaction of any particular combination has an observable effect. Perhaps I'm saying that Throne Room et al should have been "Action - Modifier", so the rules could say "when you apply a Modifier to a Duration", leaving no doubt. Then Golem could lack "Modifier" in the same way Masquerade lacks "Attack".


This whole thread has been pretty interesting because it's gotten me thinking about how much the physical cards can tell you about the game state; it seems like Throne Room/King's Court/Procession with durations are one of the times when the game state (if I understand that term correctly) has the greatest number of conditions that are not evident directly from the physical cards. The other big ones that spring to mind are reactions (you have to remember to go back to whatever was happening that they interrupted) and Possession (it creates a bunch of conditions that are true for the next turn that you force your opponent to play, but Possession itself is discarded). Mostly it's not a problem, but I think in the case of TR/KC/Procession it's especially inelegant.

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ftl

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2013, 03:53:27 pm »
+1

Of TR/KC/Procession, it's mostly procession. With TR and KC, you keep the card out with what was TR/KCed, so you see what it was modifying. Stack them if a single TR has been played on multiple durations (such as due to a previous TR/KC). With physical cards it's pretty clear. But procession... man, nothing's certain anymore. Make a procession chain, trash everything along the line, and god only knows what you're supposed to get at the start of the next turn.

The other big thing is cards which give you choices. If you see "village, pawn, pawn" have been played, you really have no idea what the game state is, you might have anywhere from 0-2 actions left, 0-2 coins to spend, 1-3 buys.
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KingZog3

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2013, 06:53:40 pm »
0

Of TR/KC/Procession, it's mostly procession. With TR and KC, you keep the card out with what was TR/KCed, so you see what it was modifying. Stack them if a single TR has been played on multiple durations (such as due to a previous TR/KC). With physical cards it's pretty clear. But procession... man, nothing's certain anymore. Make a procession chain, trash everything along the line, and god only knows what you're supposed to get at the start of the next turn.

The other big thing is cards which give you choices. If you see "village, pawn, pawn" have been played, you really have no idea what the game state is, you might have anywhere from 0-2 actions left, 0-2 coins to spend, 1-3 buys.

If Procession is out IRL, get a pad of paper and make the other player help you remember what the hell is going on.
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AJD

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2013, 07:26:07 pm »
+3

Of TR/KC/Procession, it's mostly procession. With TR and KC, you keep the card out with what was TR/KCed, so you see what it was modifying. Stack them if a single TR has been played on multiple durations (such as due to a previous TR/KC). With physical cards it's pretty clear. But procession... man, nothing's certain anymore. Make a procession chain, trash everything along the line, and god only knows what you're supposed to get at the start of the next turn.

The other big thing is cards which give you choices. If you see "village, pawn, pawn" have been played, you really have no idea what the game state is, you might have anywhere from 0-2 actions left, 0-2 coins to spend, 1-3 buys.

If Procession is out IRL, get a pad of paper and make the other player help you remember what the hell is going on.

As we know, keeping track of Dominion gameplay data on paper is considered a "variant".  ;)
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crj

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2013, 01:56:13 pm »
0

If you see "village, pawn, pawn" have been played, you really have no idea what the game state is, you might have anywhere from 0-2 actions left, 0-2 coins to spend, 1-3 buys.
It might be possible to make player boards with handy dials on them or something to help with that.

On the other hand, at least you only have to keep track of that stuff during your turn. With durations, you have to keep track until your next turn, which can be quite some time coming in a multi-player game.
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shMerker

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2013, 03:19:11 pm »
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For cards that give a choice I usually just orient them as a reminder of how they were used. For instance a vertical minion was for money, horizotal was for a discard. For pawn I use orientation but also if I'm playing a pawn for an action I'll end up playing other actions on top of it.

Thrones make all of this hairier but for a lot of cases it's not too hard to keep track of a turn without resorting to other materials.
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crj

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2013, 07:04:20 am »
+1

For cards that give a choice I usually just orient them as a reminder of how they were used.

While you individually can do that if you like, by my understanding the rules can't recommend it, because then they'd fall foul of a certain patent on tapping cards, owned by the makers of a certain other card game?
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Davio

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2013, 07:27:52 am »
0

One question I've never seen asked: what happens if you Procession an Outpost or Tactician? (On the one hand, maybe Procession stays out if and only if a Throne Room would have done; on the other, maybe the Procession is "doing something" by marking that there's a trashed duration to apply next turn.)

According to all current rulings, Procession would in all cases act just like a Throne Room (except the part at the end with the trashing and the gaining). So it would only stay in play if the Throne Room would. Procession screws up the "reminder" part of Durations anyway...
This is correct, from the DA Rules:
Quote
If you use Procession on a Duration card (from Seaside),
Procession will stay out until your next turn and the Duration
card will have its effect twice on your next turn, even though the
Duration card is trashed.

Dark Ages can really be stressful to your memory.

Imagine playing KC-Procession-(Wharf-Caravan-Fishing Village).
Now you have a single Procession out there doing nothing at first sight, but you still have to remember "oh wait, I played a Wharf, Caravan and FV". Those cards might very well not even be on top of the trash pile anymore.
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WanderingWinder

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2013, 03:22:12 pm »
0

For cards that give a choice I usually just orient them as a reminder of how they were used.

While you individually can do that if you like, by my understanding the rules can't recommend it, because then they'd fall foul of a certain patent on tapping cards, owned by the makers of a certain other card game?
Well, I would be surprised if you could patent as simple an idea as turning cards sideways, though I do understand tapping has a patent (though I don't understand why you aren't just saying that this is in Magic). But, I am sure there isn't enough reason to risk it, particularly when you can just work out one of a number of ways to do it - no need to have a rule for it.

Davio

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #18 on: April 20, 2013, 01:36:29 pm »
0

Lotr LCG uses tapping as well, but maybe they call it differently?

I'm pretty sure something this basic is unpatentable.
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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #19 on: April 20, 2013, 01:45:13 pm »
+1

Lotr LCG uses tapping as well, but maybe they call it differently?

I'm pretty sure something this basic is unpatentable.

The mechanic isn't patented, but the word in this context is, I'm pretty sure.

Davio

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #20 on: April 20, 2013, 01:53:14 pm »
0

Lotr LCG uses tapping as well, but maybe they call it differently?

I'm pretty sure something this basic is unpatentable.

The mechanic isn't patented, but the word in this context is, I'm pretty sure.
Okay, so you can turn cards sideways but you can't call it tapping?
It's pretty pointless since you can just come up with a host of other words.
So why would they go through the trouble of patenting it?
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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #21 on: April 20, 2013, 02:04:51 pm »
0

Lotr LCG uses tapping as well, but maybe they call it differently?

I'm pretty sure something this basic is unpatentable.

The mechanic isn't patented, but the word in this context is, I'm pretty sure.
Okay, so you can turn cards sideways but you can't call it tapping?
It's pretty pointless since you can just come up with a host of other words.
So why would they go through the trouble of patenting it?
They probably want to associate the word "tapping" with Magic. And it's working, too.
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GendoIkari

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #22 on: April 20, 2013, 02:12:11 pm »
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Lotr LCG uses tapping as well, but maybe they call it differently?

I'm pretty sure something this basic is unpatentable.

The mechanic isn't patented, but the word in this context is, I'm pretty sure.

I'm not so sure; tapping in Magic isn't really defined all that differently from "tapping" in a general context... you tap an oil well to get oil out of it; you tap an Island to get blue mana out of it. To say that something has been "tapped" is to say that it has been used. Magic didn't create a new keyword there; no more so than using the word "destroyed" (now "killed") to refer to a creature being sent to the graveyard.
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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #23 on: April 20, 2013, 02:21:03 pm »
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Quote
On cards since Revised edition (1994), tapping has been represented by a symbol, though this is not unique to the game of Magic: The Gathering. U.S. Patent 5,662,332 was filed by Wizards of the Coast to patent the mechanics of some aspects of collectible card games, including tapping.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tap_(gaming)

GendoIkari

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Re: Cards that "play or modify" Durations
« Reply #24 on: April 20, 2013, 02:23:40 pm »
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Quote
On cards since Revised edition (1994), tapping has been represented by a symbol, though this is not unique to the game of Magic: The Gathering. U.S. Patent 5,662,332 was filed by Wizards of the Coast to patent the mechanics of some aspects of collectible card games, including tapping.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tap_(gaming)

Yeah, actually I just looked that up myself! It actually sounds like the opposite if what you thought, though... the mechanics of tapping are patented, not the term. If I'm reading correctly.

http://www.google.com/patents?vid=5662332

It also sounds like it only applies to "trading card games", though I don't know how that is defined.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2013, 02:25:00 pm by GendoIkari »
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