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Subject: Dumpster Diving and Head Hunter rss

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Lawrence Wang
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How exactly does dumpster diving work? Is it all the discard piles in the park or just the discard pile for rides/upgrade/etc (not including the events discard pile).

If it's the latter, how exactly do you counter head hunter? There's only 2 head hunter cards in the game and if somebody uses it on you and you don't have instant karma, there's only one left? I like the fact that you can counter all the take that in the game but with something like head hunter where you can't counter it, it really ruins the game for me.
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Joel Finch
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Dumpster Diving only works on the Park discard pile, so by itself it's not a direct counter to Headhunting. The game deliberately doesn't offer a method of selecting any Event card you wish from the discard pile - if it does so in future, then the cost will be high, to balance the amount of control that offers.

The general method for obtaining an upgrade you need that another player has is to demolish it and use Dumpster Diving to retrieve it. The same is true for transferring staff members - get them fired, and then retrieve and recruit them.

The Vampire pack is the only pack that allows direct staff stealing, and it also adds Instant Karma as a reversal mechanism; it's in the same pack to ensure it will always be available alongside Head Hunting. The Mesmerist also allows stealing a staff member for one round - at the cost of one action while you control them you can also dismiss them to the discard. Vlad's Impaler, if you receive it, also enables the process of searching staff out of the discard, so those options can be used for staff manipulation also.

So in any game with Vampires, there are three Event cards available in addition to the initial Head Hunting itself that can reverse the effect immediately, and it can be done the "hard way" via Frivolous Lawsuit + Dumpster Diving.

On a meta level, it means that when Vampires are in play, if you wish to use a strategy that is heavily dependent on a specific staff member, it's best to wait until you have Head Hunting in hand before you rely on them, or choose a strategy that doesn't need staff to always be there. The ultimate defense is of course to hold both Head Hunting cards in hand, but that is not reliably achievable.

Future packs will add direct defense methods for staff, but that's not of any value for the moment of course.
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The Sploot
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Oh wow I didn't think you could dismiss a mesmerized employee to deny your opponent their staff member. I assume then that once dismissed, the staff member will NOT return to its original owner during clean up, and that the mesmerism token is removed?

This seems a bit overpowered though...
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Lawrence Wang
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joelfinch wrote:
Dumpster Diving only works on the Park discard pile, so by itself it's not a direct counter to Headhunting. The game deliberately doesn't offer a method of selecting any Event card you wish from the discard pile - if it does so in future, then the cost will be high, to balance the amount of control that offers.

The general method for obtaining an upgrade you need that another player has is to demolish it and use Dumpster Diving to retrieve it. The same is true for transferring staff members - get them fired, and then retrieve and recruit them.

The Vampire pack is the only pack that allows direct staff stealing, and it also adds Instant Karma as a reversal mechanism; it's in the same pack to ensure it will always be available alongside Head Hunting. The Mesmerist also allows stealing a staff member for one round - at the cost of one action while you control them you can also dismiss them to the discard. Vlad's Impaler, if you receive it, also enables the process of searching staff out of the discard, so those options can be used for staff manipulation also.

So in any game with Vampires, there are three Event cards available in addition to the initial Head Hunting itself that can reverse the effect immediately, and it can be done the "hard way" via Frivolous Lawsuit + Dumpster Diving.

On a meta level, it means that when Vampires are in play, if you wish to use a strategy that is heavily dependent on a specific staff member, it's best to wait until you have Head Hunting in hand before you rely on them, or choose a strategy that doesn't need staff to always be there. The ultimate defense is of course to hold both Head Hunting cards in hand, but that is not reliably achievable.

Future packs will add direct defense methods for staff, but that's not of any value for the moment of course.


I also did not know you can dismiss staffs. Back to rereading the rules again. Thanks.
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Joel Finch
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Sploot wrote:
Oh wow I didn't think you could dismiss a mesmerized employee to deny your opponent their staff member. I assume then that once dismissed, the staff member will NOT return to its original owner during clean up, and that the mesmerism token is removed?

When a card leaves play, any coins or tokens on it are discarded. If it comes back into play later, it is considered a fresh version of that card, not a continuation of the old one.

Sploot wrote:
This seems a bit overpowered though...

Staff members have powers that are strong, and they are intended to attract attention from other players. They are inherently volatile because they can be attacked directly (unlike attractions, which are stable - Ninja special-case notwithstanding) and this is factored into their abilities, cost, and points. For example, some staff pay off 5 coins for each of a specific item, one even gives an entire extra action of your choice each round, while even super attractions don't get that high because they're virtually impossible to destroy entirely.

At the cost to the attacking player of using up a Park step action, staff dismissal while mesmerised is on par with any Event card demolition effect (which are obtained by using an action to draw Event cards). Mesmerism can be defended by using Head Hunting immediately after they are mesmerised, to bring them back to you early, and thereafter they are immune because of the mesmerism token.

Think of it this way - the staff that are likely to get dismissed, stolen, or mesmerised, are all a bit "unfair" to begin with, and losing them early or having to defend them is part of paying for getting the use of their enhanced abilities. Not all costs are marked on the card

If you happen to be playing with World Peace, and can't dismiss competitors' staff, the balance comes in getting your own staff, with their own asymmetric-but-powerful abilities - the game is more a race than a fight under those circumstances, but still with plenty of power available to everyone.
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