2009 is the year that we really got into gaming as a couple. We got off to a really good start, as my wife got me this game for my birthday. We instantly loved the game, and it is one of our most played games. In addition to that we have all of the expansions (except for a couple of the promo cards). So we like the game but do we love it?
I think most people have some familiarity with Dominion. In this game, there are 10 "kingdom cards" available. These cards allow for a while variety of actions. There are also treasure cards available in various denominations and victory cards, which are worth points. On a player's turn remember it goes ABC.
A= Action. A palyer may play one action card from you hand and do what it says.
B=Buy. A player may buy one card from the piles. To buy a player must have treasure cards in their hand equal to or greater than the cost of the card. The card you buy goes into your discard pile.
C=clean up. Finally, the player takes all of the cards played, plus any cards remaining in your hand, and put them in your discard pile. Then draw five new cards. If the draw deck is empty when you attempt to draw, shuffle your discard pile.
A player can only play one action card and buy one card unless an action card that allows more is played. The Woodcutter for instance gives +2 money and +1 Buy. This means you may buy two cards, and you have an imaginary two extra coins to buy stuff with. The goal of the game is to have the most points by buying the victory point cards, whoever has the most points will win. However, each time you get one of these cards it goes into your deck and you can not use it while playing, so you need to balance buying points with buying other stuff so that the victory points do not clog the deck.
The Game We Played
We used one of the recommended sets from the Hinterland expansions. We played the "Instant Gratification" set which included the following cards: Bishop, Expand, Hoard, Mint, Watchtower, Farmland, Haggler, Ill-Gotten Gains,Noble Brigand, Trader.
My wife has hard time not always going after the Bishop when it was in play, and she pursued that strategy again. Her goal was to buy most of the Bishops and the estates. She then hoped to buy out one more pile and end the game. I pursued a strategy that centered around the Expand card. I used Hagglers, Hoards, and Farmlands to get extra cards, that I then used Expand and turned the kingdom cards into victory point cards. I got a lot of Provinces this way, and even a couple of Colonies. My wife did manage to empty the Bishop and estate piles, but she then began to stall. The game ended when she bought the last Duchy card. I won 84 to 50.
My Rating: 5 (love it!)
My Thoughts: I really like the mix of strategy and tactics in this game. I like the idea of surveying the kingdom cards at the beginning, mapping a strategy, and then each turn trying to figure out he best play. I also like how, with the expansions, the game has infinite combination of possible set ups.
Her Rating: 5 (love it!)
Her Thoughts: I always enjoy it and I love the variety.
Combined Rating: 10
We love Dominion! This is one our absolute favorite games, and one we will be constantly be playing.