$10.00
Recommend
5 
 Thumb up
 Hide
21 Posts

Dominion: Alchemy» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Playing With Alchemy Cards: Possession, Golem, Philosopher's Stone rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Gwommy the Purple
United States
Portland
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
[color=purple]Although we do not have the actual cards yet, we did what was suggested for the fan-made cards to test them out. We wrote down the cards that we wanted to play with and what each card did. Then we chose an actual Dominion card to represent each card from Alchemy. For example, we used the Harem as a substitute for the potions.

We only played one and there was only 2 of us. I chose the two cards that I thought would be most annoying (Possession and Philosopher's Stone), while my friend picked one that he thought would be cool to play with (Golem). So the cost of each card was a potion + 3, 4 or 6 coins. Our game probably lasted between 30 minutes, which isn't too bad.

We both opened by buying a potion. Then I bought a silver, where my friend bought something that let's you draw extra cards. At any rate, on my next turn I got 2 estates, 2 copper and the potion. Very frustrating that I couldn't buy a Alchemy card, but I settled for a Chapel. My friend was able to buy the Golem, and I think he did even though he didn't have 2 other actions yet.

The next time that our Potions came around, again I only had 2 copper with the potion. The 3rd time that I got the potion, I was finally able to buy a Possession, but my friend had bought one the turn before me.

He played the Possession before me as well. And he happened to have played it when I had the Possession in my hand. We figured if he would have played the Possession for me, then I would get his next turn, so that never happened. In that aspect, it felt like an attack since it prevented me from using the Possession myself.

The next time Possession came up for me, I felt it would be more valuable to Chapel away 2 coppers and an estate rather than stealing his turn. Finally after the 3rd time of me getting Possession into my hand, I was able to use it on him (if you're keeping track, that's after I've shuffled my deck about 6 times through). He had an explorer and enough coins for a me to buy a Province, so that was nice, but he did the same thing to me too, so in a way, we kind of evened out.

But after he used possession on me a couple of times, I didn't think it was that big of a deal. My friend still thinks that it feels like an attack and that it should be marked as attack because he thinks he should be able to use a moat to prevent it from happening. Overall, I like actually kind of like this card (especially if I'm sitting next to someone that knows how to build a good deck).

We each had also bought the Philosopher's Stone. Let me tell you that it is almost worthless in a Chapel deck. I think I had it worth 2 coins at the most. OTOH, my friend was making many purchases and abusing the Explorer for Silver and Gold. Once he played the card and it was worth 7 coins. As for counting the cards in the deck and discard pile, it was not half as horrible as I imagined it being. It seriously did not even take half as long as I thought it would take. It didn't slow the game down at all. So again, this is does seem like a decent card.

My only question about the Philosopher's Stone is it actually just a treasure? Or is it an action-treasure? The text I read for this card makes it sound like it should be played as an action, but at the same time the card type only said 'Treasure'.

Finally, we have the Golem. We both also bought at least 1 Golem each. This is the card that made the game a little bit longer, but not much. Being a terminal action, we often found ourselves drawing out cards like Village or Nobles to give us chance to draw more cards and get extra actions. On one turn, I pulled out an Explorer (when I already had a Province in my hand), and a Possession, that was a nice turn. Once again, I liked this card and it worked well in both a Chapel deck, and especially well in a deck where you can almost draw the entire deck into your hand.

Lastly, about the potion: I only bought one, and that's probably the most potions that any player would really need, maybe 2 if you have a bigger deck. But having 1 potion didn't seem to clog up a small Chapel deck at all. My friend had two and it didn't seem to hinder him at all.

So far, I give it a thumbs up! It seems to be a much better expansion than I was imagining from reading the cards. I'm definitely planning on getting this expansion as I was originally planning. I was a little leary about it when I saw the card list, but just playtesting 3 of the cards went much better than I imagined it. Next time I get together with my friend(s), we'll try out some others, and hopefully before we know it, we'll be able to the actual cards! I hope this helps.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roberta Yang
msg tools
gwommy wrote:
[color=purple]My only question about the Philosopher's Stone is it actually just a treasure? Or is it an action-treasure? The text I read for this card makes it sound like it should be played as an action, but at the same time the card type only said 'Treasure'.


It's a Treasure. It's played as a Treasure during the Buy Phase. If it were an Action, it would provide +Coin and not be a Treasure at all. However, it's a Treasure and it's not an Action, and you play it just like you play every other Treasure in the game.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Boian Spasov
Bulgaria
Sofia
flag msg tools
Real men roll d20s!
mbmbmbmbmb
gwommy wrote:
[color=purple]As for counting the cards in the deck and discard pile, it was not half as horrible as I imagined it being. It seriously did not even take half as long as I thought it would take. It didn't slow the game down at all. So again, this is does seem like a decent card.


Great to hear, thanks! I like the idea behind of the Philosopher's Stone, but I was really horrified from the perspective of counting each time I use it. Good to know it is not such a hard work.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Branko K.
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
gwommy wrote:
The 3rd time that I got the potion, I was finally able to buy a Possession, but my friend had bought one the turn before me.


Ummm.. it costs 6 plus a potion. And you apparently bought it after the second or third reshuffle, barely having Silver in your decks and no Gold whatsoever. How on earth did you both acquire Possession so quickly??
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gwommy the Purple
United States
Portland
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
baba44713 wrote:
gwommy wrote:
The 3rd time that I got the potion, I was finally able to buy a Possession, but my friend had bought one the turn before me.


Ummm.. it costs 6 plus a potion. And you apparently bought it after the second or third reshuffle, barely having Silver in your decks and no Gold whatsoever. How on earth did you both acquire Possession so quickly??


[color=purple]I got Possesion after the 3rd time that I got the potion, which would be on the 4th shuffle (around my 9th turn). My hand consisted of the potion, 2 silvers, and 2 coppers.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Branko K.
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
gwommy wrote:
baba44713 wrote:
gwommy wrote:
The 3rd time that I got the potion, I was finally able to buy a Possession, but my friend had bought one the turn before me.


Ummm.. it costs 6 plus a potion. And you apparently bought it after the second or third reshuffle, barely having Silver in your decks and no Gold whatsoever. How on earth did you both acquire Possession so quickly??


[color=purple]I got Possesion after the 3rd time that I got the potion, which would be on the 4th shuffle (around my 9th turn). My hand consisted of the potion, 2 silvers, and 2 coppers.


On the 4th shuffle you would be getting it for the 4th time (since you got a potion after each re-shuffle).

I just think it was extraordinarily lucky. Buying Possession is more difficult than purchasing a Province, which usually does not happen so early in the game. Both of you landing one so quickly seems kinda improbable, statistically speaking. Especially since you said that you had two hands with only 2 coins. Are you sure you didn't miscost it or that you didn't misinterpret some rules? Happens often when using proxies...
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David desJardins
United States
Burlingame
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
baba44713 wrote:
On the 4th shuffle you would be getting it for the 4th time (since you got a potion after each re-shuffle).


No, on the 4th shuffle he'd be getting the potion for the third time. The first shuffle happens before turn one.

Quote:
I just think it was extraordinarily lucky. Buying Possession is more difficult than purchasing a Province, which usually does not happen so early in the game.


I think this is simply wrong. It's not at all unusual to have 8 coins for a Province on turn 9, especially if you have thinned your deck with the Chapel.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Link
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
DaviddesJ wrote:
It's not at all unusual to have 8 coins for a Province on turn 9, especially if you have thinned your deck with the Chapel.


And I usually take a Province. The very fact that you have to forgo what could have been a Province purchase (had you bought Silver over Potion) and what could be a Gold (since you have 6 coin in hand anyway) makes Possession much less attractive. If you buy one, you need to do some great things with it to make it worth the sacrifice. Really looking forward to reading the "page and a half" of rules dedicated to this card.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Edwards
United States
Havertown
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
theright555J wrote:
Really looking forward to reading the "page and a half" of rules dedicated to this card.


The page and a half of rules can mostly be summed up as "Yes, you really do interpret the instructions on Possession literally."

Ambassador and Masquerade can be used to do horrible things to the player being possessed, as they don't involve normal trashing or gaining for the player (ignoring the last part of Masquerade, that is).

When Outpost and Possession are both played, the Outpost turn comes first. As Donald pointed out in another thread, this is the result of one of the rules in the base game: When instructed to do two things simultaneously, do them in turn order (going around the table).

The one thing that's sort of an exception is, for anything that normally tells the player to gain a card and then put it somewhere special (hand, top of deck), you have to ignore that last part. The person who played Possession gains the card and puts in in his/her discard pile. In other words, Treasures gained from Mine, Trading Post, Explorer, etc. cannot be used immediately.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Costello
msg tools
Quote:

The one thing that's sort of an exception is, for anything that normally tells the player to gain a card and then put it somewhere special (hand, top of deck), you have to ignore that last part. The person who played Possession gains the card and puts in in his/her discard pile. In other words, Treasures gained from Mine, Trading Post, Explorer, etc. cannot be used immediately.


Is this confirmed from the faq? Because somebody else mentioned that a literal intepretation of card text such as "Gain a silver card; put it into your hand" might go like:

1. "Gain a silver card" - by possession rules, this card is placed in the possessing player's discard.
2. "put it into your hand" - remove from possessing player's discard and put into the possessed player's hand.

If you've read that the second part should be ignored, I'd certainly believe you, but this seems like an additional "rule" being found only in the faq. Is there some snippet that I'm forgetting about that clears this up without having to go to the faq?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Edwards
United States
Havertown
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
yes
kevincos wrote:
Quote:

The one thing that's sort of an exception is, for anything that normally tells the player to gain a card and then put it somewhere special (hand, top of deck), you have to ignore that last part. The person who played Possession gains the card and puts in in his/her discard pile. In other words, Treasures gained from Mine, Trading Post, Explorer, etc. cannot be used immediately.


Is this confirmed from the faq? Because somebody else mentioned that a literal intepretation of card text such as "Gain a silver card; put it into your hand" might go like:

1. "Gain a silver card" - by possession rules, this card is placed in the possessing player's discard.
2. "put it into your hand" - remove from possessing player's discard and put into the possessed player's hand.

If you've read that the second part should be ignored, I'd certainly believe you, but this seems like an additional "rule" being found only in the faq. Is there some snippet that I'm forgetting about that clears this up without having to go to the faq?


My entire post was based on reading the FAQ (a friend of mine was nice enough to get me a copy of Alchemy at GoF). I don't know of any other place that this interpretation would be defined as a rule, so I agree that the FAQ appears to be the only place to get this. We are essentially being told to ignore extra instructions on the cards (which are distinct from the gaining as they are usually separate sentences).

Ideally, Possession itself would have said something like "...ignoring any further instructions on where to put them," but I guess that would have been too much text.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Sean McCarthy
United States
Seattle
Washington
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
This is just my amateur interpretation, but "put it into your hand" is short for "put it into your hand instead of into your discard pile". Since you are not putting it into your discard pile, because the entire "gain" effect was already replaced, the "put it in your hand" replacement never kicks in.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Link
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
weasel47 wrote:
Ambassador and Masquerade can be used to do horrible things to the player being possessed, as they don't involve normal trashing or gaining for the player (ignoring the last part of Masquerade, that is).


I'm really surprised the rules don't prevent this. If "trash" can be re-defined as "set aside, then discard" for purposes of this card, I would think that "return to Supply" and "Pass" would also be redefined. So am I correct that the following hypothetical situation could occur: 4 player game, 2 provinces left in supply. I play Possession during my action phase, then buy a province. Now I possess the player to my left and find he has Ambassador-Province-Province. Play ambassador, reveal province, return 2 to the supply, distribute one to each player (including yourself), game over with 24 point swing between you and that player in what is effectually a single turn. If so, wow.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Donald X.
United States
flag msg tools
designer
SevenSpirits wrote:
This is just my amateur interpretation, but "put it into your hand" is short for "put it into your hand instead of into your discard pile". Since you are not putting it into your discard pile, because the entire "gain" effect was already replaced, the "put it in your hand" replacement never kicks in.

This is correct. When you gain a Silver via Trading Post, it never goes to your discard pile. It goes straight to your hand. Possession replaces them gaining the card with you gaining it, and by default when you gain a card it goes to your discard pile.

Possession doesn't copy the destination, and can't, since that's part of who gains it - I can't gain a card to your hand. In order for Possession to also put the card in your hand, it would have to spell that out - "if it would have gone to that player's hand, put it into your hand." And of course there are other cases - "if it would have gone into that player's hand or on top of that player's deck or..." Anyway it doesn't say those things. They are no longer gaining the card, so it doesn't matter where it would have gone for them; it's not going there. You gain it instead; by default that goes to your discard pile.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Donald X.
United States
flag msg tools
designer
Dominion: Alchemy » Forums » Sessions
Re: Playing With Alchemy Cards: Possession, Golem, Philosopher's Stone
theright555J wrote:
weasel47 wrote:
Ambassador and Masquerade can be used to do horrible things to the player being possessed, as they don't involve normal trashing or gaining for the player (ignoring the last part of Masquerade, that is).
I'm really surprised the rules don't prevent this. If "trash" can be re-defined as "set aside, then discard" for purposes of this card, I would think that "return to Supply" and "Pass" would also be redefined. So am I correct that the following hypothetical situation could occur: 4 player game, 2 provinces left in supply. I play Possession during my action phase, then buy a province. Now I possess the player to my left and find he has Ambassador-Province-Province. Play ambassador, reveal province, return 2 to the supply, distribute one to each player (including yourself), game over with 24 point swing between you and that player in what is effectually a single turn. If so, wow.

There's just no way to fit text for those things on the card.

Originally, Masquerade had you trash the card and the player to your left gain it. This was because I wanted to make sure that any case that ever came up was covered. Trashing meant it leaves your deck; gaining meant it's added to your deck.

Valerie thought this was confusing. To her, trashing meant putting a card in the trash pile. Gaining, okay, gaining already might put it on your deck or in your hand. That wasn't great but was acceptable. It could have been that you didn't trash it but they gained it. I thought that wasn't as good as just not trashing or gaining at all, so that's the way it ended up.

Not that I am complaining! There are cases where one way or the other was simpler. It's possible that the trash/gain implementation for Masquerade would have been confusing. Possession is a case where Masquerade ends up being a weird exception, but then Possession is fairly exotic already.

In practice Possession / Masquerade plays out one of two ways. 1) You notice the combo and they don't. They buy Masquerade and you gleefully Possess them, hoping they have it and a Province sometime. You have a memorable game, and they don't fall for this again. 2) Everyone sees the combo. No-one buys Masquerade. No Provinces are passed.

I prefer not to have cards shut out other cards like that, but of course it happens all the time. I'm sure you can come up with an older card pair where one being out means you are just not buying the other one.

I have talked about Masquerade but similar stuff applies to Ambassador. Ambassador was in a later set, so there was never talk of having return-to-the-supply be trashing. You can Ambassador them an Ambassador in order to get the combo, but then you are opening yourself up to it as well.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Branko K.
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
donaldx wrote:

In practice Possession / Masquerade plays out one of two ways. 1) You notice the combo and they don't. They buy Masquerade and you gleefully Possess them, hoping they have it and a Province sometime. You have a memorable game, and they don't fall for this again. 2) Everyone sees the combo. No-one buys Masquerade. No Provinces are passed.


But wouldn't the Province go to the player who sits on the left of the possessed player, and not the player who played the Possession? Why would I want to help that guy, barring a kingmaking exercise?

Or perhaps this is supposed to be only a 2-player scenario and I should read more carefully..
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Edwards
United States
Havertown
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
I'm glad that Masquerade and Ambassador are exceptions to the general behavior of Possession. It's the subtle nuances like that that make specific combinations of cards interesting.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Costello
msg tools
baba44713 wrote:
donaldx wrote:

In practice Possession / Masquerade plays out one of two ways. 1) You notice the combo and they don't. They buy Masquerade and you gleefully Possess them, hoping they have it and a Province sometime. You have a memorable game, and they don't fall for this again. 2) Everyone sees the combo. No-one buys Masquerade. No Provinces are passed.


But wouldn't the Province go to the player who sits on the left of the possessed player, and not the player who played the Possession? Why would I want to help that guy, barring a kingmaking exercise?

Or perhaps this is supposed to be only a 2-player scenario and I should read more carefully..


Well, if you know the person to your left is winning and the person to their left is losing considerably, spreading the provinces between them is probably advantageous.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Alon Altman
United States
Sunnyvale
CA
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Consider this set then:
Swindler, Ambassador, Masquerade, Possession

You can swindle your LHO into an ambassador or masquerade, also you can play swindler in the possessed turn to clear your deck.

wow.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Branko K.
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Yes. Succesfully hitting just the right card with your Swindler so your LHO gets an unwanted Masquerade/Ambassador and subsequently Possessing him at the exact moment he has the swindled card in his deck together with another card with which your Masquerading/Ambassadoring would be most hurtful - THAT'S a plausible strategy if I ever heard one.

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Wei-Hwa Huang
United States
San Jose
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
donaldx wrote:
In practice Possession / Masquerade plays out one of two ways. 1) You notice the combo and they don't. They buy Masquerade and you gleefully Possess them, hoping they have it and a Province sometime. You have a memorable game, and they don't fall for this again. 2) Everyone sees the combo. No-one buys Masquerade. No Provinces are passed.


(1) has very little of the "glee" if you are playing with more than two players, since you'd rarely want to pass the Province to the third-party. Unless one is playing with the house rule that has Possession with "right" instead of "left".

But actually, I think there's a third way that was pretty frequent in playtesting:

(3) Everyone sees the combo. Some people buy Masquerade anyway, choosing to risk it. Some people manage to buy Possession. Sometimes the combo works and sometimes the game ends first.

Now, what I'd really like to see is the Possession player buying two Masquerades and using one to pass the other one to the left...
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.