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Subject: How do you rank the Dominion expansions? rss

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Aaron Chasteen
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I've finally played all the Dominion expansions. I was reading through all the cards and was looking at which sets has the lowest percentage of duds. I decided to rank the sets.

1. Prosperity - People critique Dominion for being too focused on treasure. This IS treasure. That's what makes it so great.

2. Guilds - It's a perfect set of cards. Every card offers many interesting choices. The overpay mechanic begs you to throw down big treasure. I love the coins for buying flexibility. Money. Money. Money.

3. Hinterlands - This is like the best of Base Set and Intrigue. At first I was turned off by the vanilla nature, but I discovered it's the most vital potpourri for creating kingdoms.

4. Base Set - I wondered whether this should be ranked. I recommend this for beginners over Intrigue. It has a great set of simple effective cards. One or two usually sneak up into every game.

5. Dark Ages - I love trashing! The amount of cards you get is ridiculous.

6. Seaside - I love the duration cards, but there's also a few cards I avoid. The theme is my favorite. I wish they'd release more duration or "full game" durations.

7. Intrigue - It's hard to believe this is some people's first set. It definitely has the most brutal attack cards. There's some great cards in here though.

8. Cornucopia - I like over half of these cards, but playing with them changes the focus of the game. Seaside does this a bit too, drawing attention to itself.

9. Alchemy - Just haven't got into it. Not a fan of potions. Probably a fault of my own.

So how do you rank them? No explanation necessary.
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Jerry Wilkinson
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1. Prosperity
2. Hinterlands
3. Base
4. Cornucopia
5. Intrigue
6. Seaside

I've played Dark Ages and Guilds once each, so I don't know them well enough to rank them.

I've never played Alchemy but I have no real desire to.
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Jake Smith
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Top Tier:
Seaside
Intrigue
Prosperity

Mid Tier:
Hinterlands
Cornucopia
Base Set

Alchemy Tier:
Alchemy


I've only played a little bit of Dark Ages, but would put it in around Hinterlands if I was to rank it. I haven't played Guilds.
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Hinterlands: Hinterlands has cards that offers simple card effects with big game effects. Everything interacts in interesting ways without being too complicated.
Prosperity: Prosperity is number 2 because it's really fun to be absurdly successful. Platinums and colonies also add a lot to the game.
Intrigue: Intrigue gets some credit for focusing on choice, and offering a more complex alternative to the base set. I rate it highly as the best base set, but with the existence of the base cards pack, I'd sooner pick up hinterlands as a base set and not bother with this.
Dark Ages: I don't like much in dark ages. Ruins are too similar to curses. Cards which upgrade into other cards make set up take too long and mess with my storage system. However, there are so many cards it's hard not to find something to like in dark ages.
Seaside: Seaside is alright. Everyone seems enamored with duration cards, but mechanically they're not much more interesting than a vanilla card.
Alchemy: I actually like alchemy quite a bit. The card effects are actually really interesting and offer some cool strategic options. However, as a mini set, it just doesn't have as many cards, so it's hard to rate it higher than this.
Guilds: Guilds is decent too. Saving money for next turn is a really interesting idea. However it's only one interesting idea, and the cards in the set don't offer any ideas other than that one.
Base Set: It's a good starting place, but the other sets are a lot more dynamic. There's no reason to hate it, but other sets do it better.
Cornucopia: I really don't like cornucopia. The point of dominion is to choose specific cards from the set to make the best deck. Conocopia says to buy every card in the kingdom to maximize each cards benefits. There are some interesting cards, I just think they mostly fly in the face of the point of deck building.
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Justin R
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I wish I had the experience with all the different sets to weigh in. But this will surely guide any future purchases.
 
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Matt N

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Hm...

Dark Ages (best card to $ ratio, no silly coins or mats to fiddle with)
Prosperity (with platinum), Seaside, Intrigue
Hinterlands, Cornucopia (lower ranking due to small box markup)
Base set (loses replay value much faster than the other boxes)

Haven't played: Alchemy, Guilds
 
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Joe Schmo
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Looking to maybe pick this game up and wanted to make sure I have this right. You guys are ranking the base set low, but you're saying this as buying it as an expansion if you already have the base set right? I thought the only sets you can play stand alone are the base and Intrigue?

Editing to ad that I just looked this up on Amazon and I see that you can buy the original game with the base cards and I guess other cards or you can buy just the base cards that can be used with expansions...so my question is would I be best off just buying the original box or get the base cards and a couple preferred expansions?

Thanks
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Brad Kurle
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The original set and Intrigue come with the base cards and can be played stand-alone. You can play any of the expansions with either or both of those sets. You can also play any of the expansions with just the set of base cards.

I suggest going with the original set if you don't have experience playing the game. This way you can learn the basic mechanics of the game and basic strategies. I believe Donald X. tried to bring out the other sets in order of increasing complexity, but I'm sure any experienced board/card gamer could grab any of the expansions and use them with the original set.
 
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Aaron Chasteen
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aman74 wrote:
Looking to maybe pick this game up and wanted to make sure I have this right. You guys are ranking the base set low, but you're saying this as buying it as an expansion if you already have the base set right? I thought the only sets you can play stand alone are the base and Intrigue?
That's exactly right. If you've never played, go with the base set. It will introduce you to some basic strategies. Then you can gauge whether expansions are worth it.

aman74 wrote:
Editing to ad that I just looked this up on Amazon and I see that you can buy the original game with the base cards and I guess other cards or you can buy just the base cards that can be used with expansions...so my question is would I be best off just buying the original box or get the base cards and a couple preferred expansions?
If you've already played Dominion and liked it, say a friend owns it, then I'd recommend the snazzy base set cards with the nice artwork and getting an expansion. Already having fancy cards and complex innovative cards would be a cool move. Very bold. I would hate for you to do all that and not like the game though.
 
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Kevin Brown
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Have: Base, Intrigue, Seaside, Prosperity, Hinterlands. Haven't played any of the rest. I enjoy Intrigue less than I thought I would and Hinterlands way more than I thought I would. I avoided Hinterlands for along time and picked it up at Christmas because Amazon had a great deal on it. Should've picked it up sooner!

Prosperity
Hinterlands
Seaside
Base
Intrigue
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HenningK
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Apart from Alchemy, they are all excellent, but if forced to rank them, this is how I would do it.

1. Seaside
2. Prosperity
3. Hinterlands
4. Intrigue
5. Basic Set
6. Guilds
7. Cornucopia
8. Dark Ages




9. Alchemy
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Steve McClure
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theintangiblefatman wrote:
Top Tier:
Seaside
Intrigue
Prosperity

Mid Tier:
Hinterlands
Cornucopia
Base Set

Alchemy Tier:
Alchemy


I've only played a little bit of Dark Ages, but would put it in around Hinterlands if I was to rank it. I haven't played Guilds.


This matches my play experience and opinions. I've long said that when rating the top three here, Intrigue delivers complexity. If your Dominion experience needs to be heavier, then you want to go Intrigue. I personally prefer the other two to Intrigue when I play with my family. My wife and I, looking for a lighter experience will exclude Intrigue from our games. That said, some of my favorite cards are from the Intrigue set.
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Ron Olivier, Sr.
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My list.

Hinterlands - My favorite expansion, period. Expands the game in many directions.

Intrigue - The 'Better' base set. Focuses more on hand management than the original.

Seaside - Orange Duration Cards. Need I say more?

Cornucopia - My favorite of the small sets...I like the 'diversity' theme that rewards having many different cards in your deck.

Prosperity - I don't like playing this stand-alone, but it really mixes well with the other expansions and base games.

Dominion
(original) The cards are of the 'plain Jane' variety, but who can resist cards like Chapel, Mine, and Council Room?

Guilds - The coin mechanism is cool, but there are too many forgettable cards in this small set.

Alchemy - Yes, the whole 'Potion' thing can be a pain, but it does add a unique twist to the game.

Dark Ages - Very little I like about this set. Can be just plain depressing.


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Kārlis Jēriņš
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I only have played the base game, Intrigue, Seaside and Alchemy, and my list is:
1) Alchemy - yes, that's right; the potions are awesome and the only problem with Alchemy is that it's not a big expansion and no cards from other expansions cost or use Potions. More Potion-related cards are definitely needed.
2) Seaside - the duration mechanic is great, I love being able to set up my next turn
3) Intrigue - mostly for the dual cards that are Victory-something else. Harem in particular. I generally avoid using Saboteur and Swindler, though.
4) Base set - it's good, but all expansions have something that shines brighter than this.
 
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Drew Duke
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From a value standpoint, the Dominion Big Box is a legit place to consider starting. It has the basic game, Prosperity (which is generally well thought of) and Alchemy (which may not be as well thought of) for $60-65. It is kind of like buying the base set and Prosperity with Alchemy being thrown in. We have it and Intrigue. Alchemy has not seen the table yet.

Oh, with the Big Box, you also get two random promo cards and a mat for the Victory and Treasure cards. But, no doubt...this is a great game!
 
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Joe Schmo
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achasteen wrote:
aman74 wrote:
Looking to maybe pick this game up and wanted to make sure I have this right. You guys are ranking the base set low, but you're saying this as buying it as an expansion if you already have the base set right? I thought the only sets you can play stand alone are the base and Intrigue?
That's exactly right. If you've never played, go with the base set. It will introduce you to some basic strategies. Then you can gauge whether expansions are worth it.

aman74 wrote:
Editing to ad that I just looked this up on Amazon and I see that you can buy the original game with the base cards and I guess other cards or you can buy just the base cards that can be used with expansions...so my question is would I be best off just buying the original box or get the base cards and a couple preferred expansions?
If you've already played Dominion and liked it, say a friend owns it, then I'd recommend the snazzy base set cards with the nice artwork and getting an expansion. Already having fancy cards and complex innovative cards would be a cool move. Very bold. I would hate for you to do all that and not like the game though.


Well, from what I was seeing, depending on the expansion, it didn't seem more expensive to do it that way, so was wondering if it's a viable option or the base would still be better. I think I'll avoid Intrigue as it seems mixed as to whether that's good for starting out or not.

Thanks to you as well as Brad for replying to me.
 
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Ryan McGuire
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rantinronrevue wrote:

Intrigue - The 'Better' base set. Focuses more on hand management than the original.


I'm torn on this. On the one hand, I think there is some value to having the original base game. On the other, Intrigue is a little better. If your group is planning on getting into Dominion, with each person buying an expansion, your best bet is to convince someone else to buy the original so that the group has a copy and then you "settle for" buying Intrigue as your base set.



 
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J T
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I'm intrigued by this thread. I've heard people talk about Seaside and Prosperity before, but never this much about Hinterlands: is it really this awesome? I've owned Dominion and Intrigue for two years now, but I've been hesitant as to how to expand Dominion further, in part because I didn't see the appeal of Seaside after my first play-through of it. This has, unsurprisingly, lead to a steep decline in Dominion play.
 
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Aaron Chasteen
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Neuronaut wrote:
I'm intrigued by this thread. I've heard people talk about Seaside and Prosperity before, but never this much about Hinterlands: is it really this awesome? I've owned Dominion and Intrigue for two years now, but I've been hesitant as to how to expand Dominion further, in part because I didn't see the appeal of Seaside after my first play-through of it. This has, unsurprisingly, lead to a steep decline in Dominion play.

I can understand why you had a bad experience with Seaside. Seaside cards have a grandios flavor that sometimes overshadow the rest of the cards (like Treasury, Treasure Map, Tactician and Sea Hag). They become the whole focus of the game, upsetting the balance. Alternatively, Seaside also has mediocre cards that people have little interest in (like Native Village, Pearl Diver, Navigator, Lookout).

What you're going to find with Hinterlands are more balanced cards that mix seamlessly into other sets. They don't disturb the balance, but they remain useful. Many cards give benefits as soon as you buy them, instead of waiting till they arrive in your deck. They also give complex choices like Intrigue, but without being mean attack cards. Here is a card listing for Hinterlands.

http://dominionstrategy.com/card-lists/hinterlands-card-list...
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Ron Olivier, Sr.
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Neuronaut wrote:
I'm intrigued by this thread. I've heard people talk about Seaside and Prosperity before, but never this much about Hinterlands: is it really this awesome? I've owned Dominion and Intrigue for two years now, but I've been hesitant as to how to expand Dominion further, in part because I didn't see the appeal of Seaside after my first play-through of it. This has, unsurprisingly, lead to a steep decline in Dominion play.


Have you gone beyond one playthrough of Seaside? I mean, it IS a different animal than the two base games, but it's supposed to be! If you've played it several times and still dislike it, then yeah - it's probably not for you. But if you're basing your opinion on one play thru, I'd recommend at least doing a couple more with JUST Seaside, then a few games mixing it with your favorite base set.
 
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