$18.00
GeekGold Bonus for All Supporters: 56

4,083 Supporters

$15 min for supporter badge & GeekGold bonus
25.7% of Goal | 29 Days Left

Support:

Recommend
7 
 Thumb up
 Hide
9 Posts

Terra Mystica» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Alchemists opening statistics - revisited rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Robert
Germany
Bocholt
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Alchemist opening statistics revisited
(data collected via https://flat1701.github.io/tmstats/; if you don't understand the abbreviations, look up the reference here: *click*)
Unless stated otherwise in the text, the statistics use the following filters:
* 4p games
* played by players rated >= 1100 (i.e. "Rating Quartile" is set to "Best + Good")
* original map
* Cultists Errata
* no F&I factions allowed (and thus no present )
* even in stats which include games that allowed F&I factions (e.g. "All factions"), my stats never include games which allowed variable factions before the official rule update ("v5")
* no additional scoring (Outposts aka "edge", distance, SA/SH distance, Settlements aka "clusters")
* don't care about whether the game allowed VTO, TW6-8, BON10, or TE>>4 round scoring

These filters pretty much represent the settings of a 4p game with the TM base game (plus VTO and mini-expansions) as it's used in the Terra Mystica tournament. You may rightfully argue that VTO or the presence of some mini-expansion (or not) will affect the chances of a faction, but the sample sizes just get too small and the differences are not overly relevant (and where I suspect they may be, e.g. BON10 and Mermaids, I'll check). This is about round 1 where only the starting order matters, so VTO (variable turn order) or not is less relevant.

The data lines focus on the relevant information - most filters will be mentioned in the text instead. All observations should be taken with a grain of salt, as some of the sample sizes are quite small.

The main comparisons are based on the column labeled "Margin". It contains the VP difference of the given faction compared to the average VPs in the game. So if a game between factions A, B, C and D ends 130:120:110:100VP, then the average VP count is 115VP, and the margins are +15, +5, -5 and -15 for factions A, B C and D respectively. If another game between the same factions ends 150:140:130:120, the respective margins will be exactly the same.
Still there is also a column labeled "VP" which gives the average VPs in the given scenario. Both "VP" and "Margin" come with an indicator of an error range (the number behind the '±') - the smaller this number, the more reliable is the value itself. This is usually correlated with the number of samples which are given in the "Count" column: a low number of samples (<=50 or so) can be tainted much easier by some freak results than a large sample size.

Included in "Observation 1" is a benchmark for games played by the remaining players (I'll refer to this group as "rated < 1100" even though it includes unrated players too): the delta between their average with all factions compared to the faction whose openings I'm checking may give an indication how "difficult"/"forgiving" the faction is.



Observation 1: Alchemists are a below-average faction. This disadvantage is larger in the hands of a 1100+ player than when played by not-so-good players, which leads to the conclusion that Alchemists are an "easy to play" faction (that's probably why the rules propose Alchemists for the first game if it is 3p).
Note: the 1456 games marked in line 3 are the source set for all further analysis given in the remaining observations 2-9.
Desc. VP Margin Count
ORIGINAL MAP
games played by players rated >= 1100
All factions 128.58 ± 0.09 6.01 ± 0.09 33615
No F&I factions 128.62 ± 0.09 6.01 ± 0.09 33058
Alchemists 121.56 ± 0.45 1.71 ± 0.43 1456 <== set for further analysis

games played by players rated < 1100
All factions 108.96 ± 0.10 -5.40 ± 0.09 37453
No F&I factions 108.97 ± 0.10 -5.42 ± 0.09 36718
Alchemists 102.91 ± 0.49 -9.38 ± 0.44 1474

NEW F&I MAP ("side 1")
games played by players rated >= 1100
All factions 126.00 ± 0.52 5.29 ± 0.50 1129
No F&I factions 127.77 ± 0.67 6.12 ± 0.64 702
Alchemists 121.00 ± 3.56 0.37 ± 3.45 28

games played by players rated < 1100
All factions 107.44 ± 0.57 -4.66 ± 0.52 1283
No F&I factions 108.19 ± 0.67 -4.54 ± 0.62 946
Alchemists 96.47 ± 2.73 -12.67 ± 2.75 45

REVISED MAP ("side 2")
games played by players rated >= 1100
All factions 128.38 ± 0.48 5.63 ± 0.45 1296
No F&I factions 129.35 ± 0.58 6.63 ± 0.55 859
Alchemists 117.88 ± 2.07 -2.54 ± 2.25 50

games played by players rated < 1100
All factions 107.26 ± 0.61 -6.23 ± 0.52 1699
No F&I factions 108.59 ± 0.58 -5.16 ± 0.53 1105
Alchemists 101.75 ± 2.08 -11.02 ± 2.12 57


Observation 2: A SH opening is by far the most popular opening for the Alchemists (more than 80%) and also their best bet, but they need to end the round with 3-4 dwellings in addition to the SH. This likely requires them to get the double spade using the SH bonus of 12 power, or ship+2. Ending round 1 with SH+TE but no D isn't very promising either. Building a temple is a good idea if it's accompanied by 3-4 dwellings.
It is known that Alchemists desire workers, and that may be the reason why openings without several dwellings lead to bad results. A TP instead of a D seems like a bad idea.
Uncommon openings:
* 9 people managed a "dwelling spree" (if you can call 5 dwellings that ) with good results.
* 4 players started with a SA, two had BON6 and won big time (both without SH>>5 in round 1), two had BON8 and lost horribly (both with SH>>5 in round 1) - go figure!
* one player managed a 2TE opening and won.
Desc. VP Margin Count
1SH 122.15 ± 0.49 2.01 ± 0.48 1175
1TE 121.21 ± 1.24 0.83 ± 1.14 207

breakdown of SH builders
only SH+D
DSH 116.91 ± 0.99 -2.98 ± 0.95 316
2DSH 119.72 ± 0.75 -0.25 ± 0.72 431
3DSH 129.33 ± 0.87 9.13 ± 0.86 332
4DSH 130.33 ± 2.39 10.33 ± 3.04 24

SH+TE+D
TESH 126.00 ± 2.42 4.00 ± 2.50 37
* 0DTESH 124.03 ± 2.63 2.38 ± 2.82 30
* DTESH 136.00 ± 6.99 11.85 ± 5.92 5
* 2DTESH 130.50 ± 7.50 8.63 ± 12.13 2

SH+TP+D
TPSH 121.46 ± 1.93 -0.52 ± 1.85 35
* 0DTPSH 119.27 ± 3.28 -1.45 ± 3.39 11
* DTPSH 120.47 ± 2.79 -1.54 ± 2.75 19
* 2DTPSH 130.00 ± 2.79 5.40 ± 1.22 5

breakdown of TE builders (only those without TPs)
DTE 115.55 ± 1.91 -5.11 ± 1.89 62
2DTE 118.65 ± 2.24 -0.63 ± 2.22 60
3DTE 131.04 ± 2.68 9.76 ± 2.19 45
4DTE 141.42 ± 2.83 13.85 ± 2.63 12



Observation 3: SA/SH*4 bonus (BON6) is the most popular one, and the most promising too. Of the other three somewhat popular bonus tiles, only spade bonus (BON1) leads to above-average results, while BON5 and BON8 aren't so helpful (though still better than all others).
Desc. VP Margin Count
BON1 (Spade) 122.69 ± 1.05 4.15 ± 1.04 221
* SH 122.28 ± 1.19 3.32 ± 1.19 170
* TE+D 126.64 ± 2.84 6.83 ± 2.60 33
BON2 (Cult) 119.36 ± 1.81 -0.51 ± 1.83 92
BON3 (6C) 117.83 ± 1.93 -0.98 ± 1.75 47
BON4 (Ship+1) 116.82 ± 1.95 -2.85 ± 1.72 79
BON5 (3pw,1W) 120.27 ± 1.08 0.60 ± 1.03 236
BON6 (SA/SH VP) 125.53 ± 0.85 4.74 ± 0.83 417
* SH 125.92 ± 0.87 5.12 ± 0.85 394
BON7 (TP VP) 117.44 ± 1.84 -4.09 ± 1.78 64
BON8 (1P) 120.56 ± 1.07 1.07 ± 1.02 270
BON9 (D VP) 107.44 ± 5.73 -11.50 ± 5.19 9
BON10 (Ship VP) 112.76 ± 3.64 -6.98 ± 3.30 21



Observation 4: Alchemists are picked from all four seats, with a slight preference on earlier picking. This probably has to do with the popularity of Darklings which may have been picked already before a player on seat #3 or #4 could pick Alchemists. However, the best results were seen when picked from the last seat, which assures a good bonus tile.
Desc. VP Margin Count
seat 1 120.51 ± 0.78 0.56 ± 0.75 433
seat 2 121.47 ± 0.91 1.67 ± 0.89 373
seat 3 121.25 ± 0.91 1.91 ± 0.91 328
seat 4 123.39 ± 0.99 3.12 ± 0.92 322
* BON1 (Spade) 119.98 ± 1.60 2.94 ± 1.72 81
* BON3 (6C) 104.00 ± NaN -13.75 ± NaN 1
* BON4 (Ship+1) 119.33 ± 8.53 -0.46 ± 7.11 6
* BON5 (3pw,1W) 116.86 ± 4.31 0.57 ± 3.46 22
* BON6 (SA/SH) 125.52 ± 1.34 3.30 ± 1.24 192
* BON8 (1P) 126.15 ± 3.66 6.83 ± 3.25 20



Observation 5: (Corrolary to Observation 4) Alchemists have a slightly better chance of winning if they are picked from seat #4.
Desc. VP Margin Count
winner 137.83 ± 0.59 20.09 ± 0.47 405
* seat 1 136.99 ± 1.17 19.31 ± 0.95 103
* seat 2 137.36 ± 1.23 20.48 ± 0.99 107
* seat 3 138.33 ± 1.18 21.13 ± 0.93 89
* seat 4 138.70 ± 1.15 19.59 ± 0.83 106

2nd place 125.48 ± 0.55 5.99 ± 0.37 376
* seat 1 124.31 ± 1.00 5.48 ± 0.62 124
* seat 2 126.77 ± 1.10 6.12 ± 0.71 90
* seat 3 123.86 ± 1.13 5.86 ± 0.84 84
* seat 4 127.59 ± 1.08 6.80 ± 0.82 78

3rd place 114.66 ± 0.57 -5.11 ± 0.34 360
* seat 1 115.36 ± 0.99 -5.06 ± 0.60 107
* seat 2 115.24 ± 1.21 -4.64 ± 0.74 90
* seat 3 114.48 ± 1.24 -4.74 ± 0.67 82
* seat 4 113.27 ± 1.15 -6.08 ± 0.74 81

last 103.85 ± 0.71 -19.21 ± 0.50 315
* seat 1 104.18 ± 1.22 -19.02 ± 0.78 99
* seat 2 102.67 ± 1.31 -19.80 ± 0.99 86
* seat 3 105.04 ± 1.30 -18.61 ± 1.00 73
* seat 4 103.54 ± 2.12 -19.46 ± 1.41 57



Observation 6: About half of all Alchemists were picked in games which had SH>>5 scoring in round 1, about evenly distributed between the Fire and the Air variant. This scoring leads to slightly better results than without, though it only becomes a great opening if combined with BON6. The remaining Alchemists picks were about evenly distributed across the other six scoring tiles (between 93 and 131 instances), the TE>>4 scoring tile is just too young. The two next-popular bonus tiles for SH builders in a SH>>5 round 1 were BON1 (spade) and BON8 (priest) - these two also happen to give the best margins. BON5 (1w, 3pw) was popular too, but not as successful on average.
Desc. VP Margin Count
R1: SH>>5 123.72 ± 0.59 2.70 ± 0.58 752
* built SH 124.11 ± 0.59 2.99 ± 0.59 720
* BON1 123.17 ± 1.44 3.64 ± 1.42 125
* BON6 129.08 ± 1.22 6.99 ± 1.20 181
* seat 1 134.20 ± 11.06 15.45 ± 9.90 5
* seat 2 129.60 ± 3.86 6.58 ± 3.62 10
* seat 3 128.08 ± 2.23 8.87 ± 2.21 49
* seat 4 129.24 ± 1.56 5.88 ± 1.54 117
* BON8 123.29 ± 1.24 2.45 ± 1.28 140



Observation 7: About half of the Alchemists games used VTO (variable turn order). Alchemists did significantly worse in games with VTO, but so do most factions (cf. this statistic on BGG). The delta in margin of 3.7 VP is slightly higher for Alchemists than it is for the average base factions (2.8 VP). Nobody knows whether that's because Alchemists are particularly sensitive to VTO or because newer (and therfore VTO) games field more Mermaids, Engineers and Nomads than before.
90% of the non-VTO games were recorded before April 2015, only 76 since. Just 24 VTO games were recorded before April 2015.
Desc. VP Margin Count
no VTO 121.32 ± 0.65 3.51 ± 0.63 750
VTO 121.82 ± 0.60 -0.19 ± 0.58 706



Observation 8: Alchemists seem to get less leech in round 1 than the average faction.
Desc. VP Margin Count
Power leeched by all factions in the tournament setting
0-3 125.29 ± 0.17 4.41 ± 0.17 9483
4-7 128.83 ± 0.14 6.14 ± 0.14 13643
8-11 131.09 ± 0.19 7.17 ± 0.18 7748
12-15 133.15 ± 0.39 8.15 ± 0.36 1938
16+ 131.89 ± 1.17 7.77 ± 1.04 246

Power leeched by Alchemists in the tournament setting
0-3 119.65 ± 0.66 1.01 ± 0.67 585
4-7 121.34 ± 0.73 1.55 ± 0.69 590
8-11 125.50 ± 1.13 3.04 ± 1.08 225
12-15 128.88 ± 2.58 5.27 ± 2.38 42
16+ 125.50 ± 2.92 6.09 ± 3.02 14



Observation 9: It's really the number of dwellings (in addition to the SH or the TE) the Alchemists manage to build in round 1 which decides how they'll do: if it's less than three then the Alchemists fare poorly.
The first four entries are for those who ended round 1 with SH plus 3+ dwellings (only the popular bonus tiles are listed), the next entries are for those with a TE plus 3+ dwellings.
Desc. VP Margin Count
SH + 3D (or more)
* BON1 (Spade) 129.08 ± 1.82 9.80 ± 1.87 65
* BON5 (3pw,1W) 127.29 ± 2.30 6.08 ± 2.29 45
* BON6 (SA/SH) 133.63 ± 1.33 13.74 ± 1.25 136
* BON8 (1P) 129.19 ± 2.36 7.39 ± 2.46 43

TE + 3D (or more)
* BON1 (Spade) 128.55 ± 6.15 8.86 ± 4.48 11
* BON4 (ship) 126.37 ± 3.79 4.37 ± 3.47 19
* BON8 (1P) 145.64 ± 3.06 17.27 ± 2.82 14


The TM Stats do not show us whether a game was "low coin" (i.e. all/most of the bonus tiles with coin income were absent), which per most strategy discussions is benefitial for the Alchemists.


Conclusion: The most common opening for Alchemists is to take BON6 and build a SH in round 1. In order to succeed, the statistics only give promising results if the Alchemists build at least two additional dwellings after that. BON6 gives the two required workers, coins are not an issue for the Alchemists, and the spades have to be bought with power. Alternatively, the workers can come from the ACT3 power action, the spade bonus tile can offer one dig and a second spade might also be bought with power. Lastly, why would the priest tile help? Probably by advancing ship in round 1, digging once and then sail to a black hex (e.g. C1-B2-B3 or B3-A7-A8 on the base map).
A temple is also an option if accompanied by three dwellings. This could be particularly interesting if there's a SH>>5 scoring in round 2.

=================

New opening statistics for base factions:
- Alchemists: Alchemists opening statistics - revisited


Older opening statistics for base factions:
- Alchemists: Alchemist opening statistics
- Auren: Auren opening statistics
- Chaos Magicians: Chaos Magicians openings statistics
- Cultists: Cultists opening statistics
- Darklings: Darklings opening statistics
- Dwarves: Dwarves opening statistics
- Engineers: Engineers opening statistics
- Fakirs: Fakirs opening statistics
- Giants: Giants opening statistics
- Halflings: Halflings opening statistics
- Mermaids: Mermaids opening statistics
- Nomads: Nomads opening statistics
- Swarmlings: Swarmling opening statistics
- Witches: Witches opening statistics

Older opening statistics for expansion factions:
- Riverwalkers: Riverwalker opening statistics
- Yetis: Yetis opening statistics
9 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Space Trucker
Germany
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
DocCool wrote:

breakdown of TE builders (only those without TPs)
DTE 115.55 ± 1.91 -5.11 ± 1.89 62
2DTE 118.65 ± 2.24 -0.63 ± 2.22 60
3DTE 131.04 ± 2.68 9.76 ± 2.19 45
4DTE 141.42 ± 2.83 13.85 ± 2.63 12

Here's an example of an (possibly the first?) Alchemist opening with TE and even 5D:
http://terra.snellman.net/game/4pFireIceTestS2D1L1G02/max-ro...
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert
Germany
Bocholt
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
SpaceTrucker wrote:
Here's an example of an (possibly the first?) Alchemist opening with TE and even 5D:
http://terra.snellman.net/game/4pFireIceTestS2D1L1G02/max-ro...
ACT6 *and* ACT3 - that's nice! And he even got FAV11 before building the 1st D.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Matthias Reitberger
Germany
Nürnberg
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm currently more successful with a TE start and delaying SH to turn 3. Even if there is a SA/SH bonus first round, like here
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Sammeh
United States
Alabama
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
I just pick Alchemists to see if I can pull off the round 1 town. When I do, I usually win, but it's usually impossible to do if the people you're playing with know what they're doing lol
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Darell Keise
Canada
flag msg tools
Would be great to filter the stats and remove games where players doesn't convert coins in rounds 1-5. I doubt it's in the data and possible to do, but I see this quite often in games and rarely successful.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
James Wolfpacker
United States
North Carolina
flag msg tools
mbmb
shellstorm wrote:
Would be great to filter the stats and remove games where players doesn't convert coins in rounds 1-5. I doubt it's in the data and possible to do, but I see this quite often in games and rarely successful.


Yeah, that's not in the event data, just in the game logs. I agree that not converting vp to c early and a lot is mostly doomed for failure.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gambia
Brest
msg tools
JamesWolfpacker wrote:
shellstorm wrote:
Would be great to filter the stats and remove games where players doesn't convert coins in rounds 1-5. I doubt it's in the data and possible to do, but I see this quite often in games and rarely successful.


Yeah, that's not in the event data, just in the game logs. I agree that not converting vp to c early and a lot is mostly doomed for failure.


The worst is when you see Alchemists players convert pw (instead of VP) to c in the early and mid game.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
James Wolfpacker
United States
North Carolina
flag msg tools
mbmb
Skyswooper wrote:
The worst is when you see Alchemists players convert pw (instead of VP) to c in the early and mid game.


There are probably a few situations when it is acceptable to do this instead.

1c 2w and 0/1/9 pw with no usuable ACTs left in the round with dig at 2/2 and SH.

Then I might do

convert 1pw to 1c. dig 1. build ___.

Of course being that Alchemist could always use the workers anyway, I can see

convert 1vp to 1c. convert 3pw to 1w. dig 1. build ___.

as possibly being better.
 
 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.