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Subject: Has anyone had success with these 8 cards? rss

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Robert Freeman
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[Edited, as after some experimentation, I've found that Baron is pretty sweet early in the game, Upkeep works well later in the game, and Duke has its uses. I've replaced them with a few new entries.]

I'm not saying that the following cards are 'bad', but after many games, both over the internet and in person, I've never had success with any of them, and I can't say I remember anyone else doing that well with them either:

1. Coppersmith

2. Adventurer

I've already gone over these two cards in another post, so I won't dwell on them for long. Both cost too much for what they do, don't give you anything else besides its ability (no cards, buys, actions, etc), and are 'money' cards that fail to perform as well as money of the same value (silver and gold, respectively).

3. Tribute

Some players love it, but those players never seem to win much. It just seems far too random to be worth it. You can't really build a strategy around it.

4. Market

Ah, here's the one that hurts. It SEEMS great, but when you consider the fact that the +1 card/action just cycles the card, all it's giving you is a single dollar and an extra buy. It might just be me, but by the time you're playing cards that cost 5, that's hardly a significant bonus. A single dollar and a buy aren't going to impress anyone. By comparison, a woodcutter may cost you the card and action, but it's far cheaper and gives you more money.

5. Saboteur

This is the only attack card in the game that literally gives the user NOTHING. No cards, money, or anything. Sure, it's destructive, but if you're spending your money on saboteurs, then you're not working towards winning the game. Worse yet, if there's a defense card out there, you're only helping the players that have one in their hand when saboteur is played. It might just be me, but I think it's easily the most overrated attack card in the game.

6. Envoy

Another card that some players swear by, but I don't like the fact that it filters your best cards out of your deck. Nothing's more painful than having all your gold discarded right out of your deck, thanks to Envoy.

7. Great Hall

Yes, it's an estate that cycles, giving you a new card and action...but that's all it does. I'd only ever take it as a late game card, and by then I usually always have money for something better.

8. Throne Room

Here's another one to ruffle a few feathers. As a math geek, I've found that the odds of having both a single throne room and a different single action card in your hand simply aren't very good. You're much better off with a card that gives you +1 action. There's just too great of a chance of throne room coming up without another action, or with another throne room, and nothing else.
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Trent Hamm
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I've had my teeth kicked in by the Duke before. Of course, we were playing a mixed Dominion/Intrigue mix and a guy went for a Gardens + Duke strategy. He wound up with 5 Dukes, 6 Duchys, 6 Gardens, and a 70+ card deck. Actually, during that game, he used the Saboteur to just slow everyone else down.
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Greg Jones
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robertmfreeman wrote:
2. Adventurer


Well, I have had success with it in the past, but I rarely use it any more. Before you use the Adventurer, you should trash at least most of your Copper, and most of your treasure should be Gold. Then you're expecting 5 or 6 coins for the Adventurer every time. However, I think when you get to the point where most of your treasure is Gold, you can just go ahead and win anyway, and you don't need an Adventurer.

robertmfreeman wrote:
3. Baron

Many people trash the chancellor (which is a very underrated card, in my opinion) but personally, I'd rather trash the Baron. Sure, it's good early on in the game...or not. It's only really good if you fill your deck with estates, and why would you want to do that? I'd much rather have silver. It's dependable, cheaper, and doesn't require an action.


I was going to say that this card is the new brokenness. I haven't done the math, but I believe buying a Baron and a Silver gives you the best chance to get an early Gold. Later in the game, it's not as good, but the same can be said for the Moneylender. A solution to both, if they bother you, is to trash them later (Chapel or Remodel).

I rarely fill my deck with Estates when I have a Baron, but he performs reasonably well anyway. In fact I often buy Baron and Chapel in the first round. I don't Chapel all my Estates, as I usually would. I mainly use the Chapel to trash Coppers. But I do Chapel one Estate, and the Baron still works fine. I do agree the Baron is a bit undependable. It sucks when you buy a Baron, and for three or four rounds at the start of the game, he never comes up with an Estate, but this is the exception. One way the Baron will work reliably even in the late game is if you have a deck that draws the whole deck in a turn. You're going to draw the Baron, and you're going to draw your (possibly only one) Estate.

The Baron's ability to add an Estate can be useful in the late game. Estates are good "tiebreakers", and when your deck is large, and already bloated with Provinces and Duchies anyway, adding a few Estates doesn't do too much damage. Also, the Baron works excellently in a Gardens deck. Is there any other single card that lets you gain 3 cards in a turn? The Baron gets you an Estate, then you use your normal buy, then you use the Baron's extra buy. Add to that he's the most useful +buy card for 4 or less in my opinion.

robertmfreeman wrote:
5. Upgrade

I'd much rather have a remodel.


I probably would too, but it's not always available.

robertmfreeman wrote:
Only being able to 'upgrade' the cards to ones that cost exactly 1 more means the upgrade isn't any good for getting rid of curses/copper,


Actually it is. Remember the rule is to execute as much as you can of a card's instructions. You trash a card, then you gain a card costing exactly one more. If you trash an Estate, you must take a Silver at least. If you trash a curse or Copper, you cannot execute the second part, so you don't gain any card. That's okay, the first part remains in effect.

I have had some success with a combined Upgrade/Remodel deck. You can play both cards in the same turn without any additional +action cards. So you can speed along your upgrading process. Also, you can Upgrade your Upgrades to Golds, then Remodel them to Provinces. But I don't think it's a very strong deck, just one that has worked for me in otherwise pretty weak sets.

robertmfreeman wrote:
7. Market

Ah, here's the one that hurts. It SEEMS great, but when you consider the fact that the +1 card/action just cycles the card, all it's giving you is a single dollar and an extra buy. It might just be me, but by the time you're playing cards that cost 5, that's hardly a significant bonus. A single dollar and a buy aren't going to impress anyone. By comparison, a woodcutter may cost you the card and action, but it's far cheaper and gives you more money.


Here you are clearly crazy. The Market is widely loved as one of the best cards in the game. Originally I felt the same way as you about it, but now I feel differently. I am not a Market fanboy. The Market is not my favorite card. But it is useful in a lot of circumstances.

You have to think about it this way. The Market is as good as your average card in your deck ... plus one. If the average card in your deck costs 3, then the Market isn't worth 5. If the average card in your deck costs 4, then the Market is probably worth about the same as other 5-cost cards. If the average card in your deck costs 5, the Market is awesome. If every card in your deck is a Market (except the Chapel of course), then the value of each of those Markets is the value of each of those Markets +1 - positive feedback loop.

You also just want at least one Market in a lot of games. You want a +buy most of the time. The Market is one of the only +buys that doesn't expend an action. I'd buy a Market for my +buy before I'd buy a Woodcutter. Also, the Market is very nice combined with the Throne Room, especially if there are no +2 actions cards. That combo gives a virtual +2 actions. Other combos, like Throne Room / Cellar and Throne Room / Spy give you +2 actions, but not much else. Throne Room / Market and Throne Room / Laboratory are the best uses of Throne Room.
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Michael Leuchtenburg
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robertmfreeman wrote:

2. Adventurer


Adventurer is excellent *if* you can get rid of most of your copper. Otherwise, as you said, it tends to not fetch enough money.

robertmfreeman wrote:

5. Upgrade

I'd much rather have a remodel. Only being able to 'upgrade' the cards to ones that cost exactly 1 more means the upgrade isn't any good for getting rid of curses/copper, or gaining you provinces, or shortening the length of the game (by remodeling cards into the exact same cards, to thin out the selection). All it seems good for is turning early game cards into late game cards, and remodel does it a lot better, for a cheaper price.


Here's where you are completely and utterly wrong. Why would you not be able to get rid of a curse or copper with Upgrade? Read down the card:
+1 Card
+1 Action
Trash a card from your hand.
Gain a card costing exactly 1 more than it.

So if you trash a copper, you get to the last line and can't do it. Whoops! Guess you'll have to skip that line. And yes, I'm 100% certain this is the correct way to resolve Dominion cards. You might want to take another look at Throne Room/Feast, while you're at it.

robertmfreeman wrote:

7. Market

Ah, here's the one that hurts. It SEEMS great, but when you consider the fact that the +1 card/action just cycles the card, all it's giving you is a single dollar and an extra buy. It might just be me, but by the time you're playing cards that cost 5, that's hardly a significant bonus. A single dollar and a buy aren't going to impress anyone. By comparison, a woodcutter may cost you the card and action, but it's far cheaper and gives you more money.


Comparing this to Woodcutter is not reasonable - cards that give +actions are extremely useful in decks built around them. A better comparison is Festival or Laboratory - I'd rather have either of those than a Market. Still, even if all three were available, I might mix a couple of Markets in there.

I generally agree that Market is overrated, but it's not terrible.

robertmfreeman wrote:

8. Saboteur

This is the only attack card in the game that literally gives the user NOTHING. No cards, money, or anything. Sure, it's destructive, but if you're spending your money on saboteurs, then you're not working towards winning the game. Worse yet, if there's a defense card out there, you're only helping the players that have one in their hand when saboteur is played. It might just be me, but I think it's easily the most overrated attack card in the game.


Saboteur is *extremely* variable. If you hit a province with it, damn, that hurts a *lot*. But if all you hit is action cards, eh. Sure, it can keep your opponents low tech while you build up a real economy, but you've got to be playing it a lot to manage that.
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Michael Leuchtenburg
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morningstar wrote:
You also just want at least one Market in a lot of games. You want a +buy most of the time. The Market is one of the only +buys that doesn't expend an action. I'd buy a Market for my +buy before I'd buy a Woodcutter. Also, the Market is very nice combined with the Throne Room, especially if there are no +2 actions cards. That combo gives a virtual +2 actions. Other combos, like Throne Room / Cellar and Throne Room / Spy give you +2 actions, but not much else. Throne Room / Market and Throne Room / Laboratory are the best uses of Throne Room.


Personally, I'm a big fan of Throne Room/Feast. It's a transient combo, but a great one. TR also goes well with some attack cards, like Witch and Saboteur; not as well with Torturer, but still not bad; pretty darn good with Thief (in a 4 player game). And a Throned Council Room is likely to let you buy just about anything you want, and if preceded with a Village can turn into some massive chaining.

Throne Room/Market is boring. Throne Room/Lab is pretty good.
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Jeff Wolfe
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robertmfreeman wrote:
I'm not saying that the following cards are 'bad', but after many games, both over the internet and in person, I've never had success with any of them, and I can't say I remember anyone else doing that well with them either:


I've seen them all used effectively, and used many of them myself.

Quote:
1. Coppersmith

I tend to use this as a "jump-start" card; I don't necessarily build a deck around it. It's great to get you some high cost cards early, though.

Quote:
2. Adventurer

This card is great if you have low density money. The money you do have, you can get to it quickly.

Quote:
3. Baron

Many people trash the chancellor (which is a very underrated card, in my opinion) but personally, I'd rather trash the Baron. Sure, it's good early on in the game...or not. It's only really good if you fill your deck with estates, and why would you want to do that? I'd much rather have silver. It's dependable, cheaper, and doesn't require an action.

Another good jump-start card. Harder to build a deck around, but possible. It provides its own fodder.

Quote:
4. Duke

Has anyone ever used these guys effectively? I've seen people try, but all they seem to do is lose to the players who stacked up on provinces.

I've seen a good Duke deck, but I don't recall it coming out much in the random draw, so I don't have a lot of experience with it.

Quote:
5. Upgrade

I'd much rather have a remodel. Only being able to 'upgrade' the cards to ones that cost exactly 1 more means the upgrade isn't any good for getting rid of curses/copper, or gaining you provinces, or shortening the length of the game (by remodeling cards into the exact same cards, to thin out the selection). All it seems good for is turning early game cards into late game cards, and remodel does it a lot better, for a cheaper price.

As in this case, "I'd rather have X," often means, "This is good when X is not in play." It works slower, but it does other stuff for you. I don't often play Remodel/Mine/Upgrade type decks, but as with Remodel and Mine, I've seen Upgrade used quite effectively.

Quote:
6. Tribute

Some players love it, but those players never seem to win much. It just seems far too random to be worth it. You can't really build a strategy around it.

This is very good when there are multi-type cards in play. You really have to pay attention to what your left-hand opponent is doing, and buy this if their deck will make this work with your strategy.

As an aside, I've seen two Tributes that came up Curse/Curse. The first one, I was the left-hand player and I had "called" it. After a hand with the opponent getting all the bonuses because of a multi-type, I said, "The next one will be Curse/Curse", and sure enough, it was. The other Curse/Curse was between two of my opponents.

Quote:
7. Market

Ah, here's the one that hurts. It SEEMS great, but when you consider the fact that the +1 card/action just cycles the card, all it's giving you is a single dollar and an extra buy. It might just be me, but by the time you're playing cards that cost 5, that's hardly a significant bonus. A single dollar and a buy aren't going to impress anyone. By comparison, a woodcutter may cost you the card and action, but it's far cheaper and gives you more money.

I think you underestimate the value of a card that replaces itself. I never have to worry about getting stuck with a Market I can't play.

Quote:
8. Saboteur

This is the only attack card in the game that literally gives the user NOTHING. No cards, money, or anything. Sure, it's destructive, but if you're spending your money on saboteurs, then you're not working towards winning the game. Worse yet, if there's a defense card out there, you're only helping the players that have one in their hand when saboteur is played. It might just be me, but I think it's easily the most overrated attack card in the game.

I don't think this card is overrated, because there are lots of people out there who don't like it. I don't like Saboteur myself, but I've seen it used quite effectively. And don't overestimate the value of defense cards. If you have enough of them to counter every single attack, you have too many of them for your own strategy (although this can be mitigated if you have a strategy that uses their non-defense ability). I've seen players win with Attack cards more because their opponents focused on defense than because of what the Attack actually did.
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Andrew Hardin
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robertmfreeman wrote:

4. Duke

Has anyone ever used these guys effectively? I've seen people try, but all they seem to do is lose to the players who stacked up on provinces.


I have won 2 games using the Duke strategy.

The key to the Duke strategy is to play what I call the 'sputtering deck' approach. It is fairly easy to get 5 Coin a turn on average and harder to get 8. If you are willing to let your deck clog badly and go for the Duke cards early you can end the game with something like 6 Duchy, 4 Dukes fairly easily.

This card mixes well with a modified Big Money attack, but I personally found the Bridge to make this strategy much stronger. The key to winning with this approach is to be completely willing to commit to buying the Duchy/Duke cards very early.

robertmfreeman wrote:

5. Upgrade

I'd much rather have a remodel. Only being able to 'upgrade' the cards to ones that cost exactly 1 more means the upgrade isn't any good for getting rid of curses/copper, or gaining you provinces, or shortening the length of the game (by remodeling cards into the exact same cards, to thin out the selection). All it seems good for is turning early game cards into late game cards, and remodel does it a lot better, for a cheaper price.


The thing about this card is that it chains. It can make the Duke strategy much stronger or can be combined with a number of other strategies to consistently improve the quality of your deck in a steady way.

As much as I like the Remodel the Upgrade can be faster. Not only does it toss the Copper/Curse (a point others have made above) but it tends to help consistently cycle your deck upwards while chaining.

robertmfreeman wrote:

7. Market

Ah, here's the one that hurts. It SEEMS great, but when you consider the fact that the +1 card/action just cycles the card, all it's giving you is a single dollar and an extra buy. It might just be me, but by the time you're playing cards that cost 5, that's hardly a significant bonus. A single dollar and a buy aren't going to impress anyone. By comparison, a woodcutter may cost you the card and action, but it's far cheaper and gives you more money.


Never underestimate the power of chaining cards. The trick with the Market is that it combines 3 critical effects together. You get +1 Coin, +1 Action, +1 Card (and +1 Buy, which is either worthless or priceless).

The trick with the Market is that the +1 Coin is in addition to the other 5 cards. Once you play the Market you are essentially right back where you started with an additional Coin and Buy.

It may not seem like a lot but it does much the same as the Upgrade in that it consistently pushes your power upwards in a steady path. Don't underestimate this. Particularly in a card that adds cards to your deck without slowing down the speed it cycles.

- Lex
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Greg Jones
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dyfrgi wrote:
morningstar wrote:
You also just want at least one Market in a lot of games. You want a +buy most of the time. The Market is one of the only +buys that doesn't expend an action. I'd buy a Market for my +buy before I'd buy a Woodcutter. Also, the Market is very nice combined with the Throne Room, especially if there are no +2 actions cards. That combo gives a virtual +2 actions. Other combos, like Throne Room / Cellar and Throne Room / Spy give you +2 actions, but not much else. Throne Room / Market and Throne Room / Laboratory are the best uses of Throne Room.


Personally, I'm a big fan of Throne Room/Feast. It's a transient combo, but a great one. TR also goes well with some attack cards, like Witch and Saboteur; not as well with Torturer, but still not bad; pretty darn good with Thief (in a 4 player game). And a Throned Council Room is likely to let you buy just about anything you want, and if preceded with a Village can turn into some massive chaining.

Throne Room/Market is boring. Throne Room/Lab is pretty good.


The problem with a couple of those combos is that they require a Village or Festival to work well. Throne Room / Council Room without a Village is a good way to give your opponents two cards and draw mostly action cards. Throne Room / Witch gives out two curses, but might likewise end up not gaining much for you. It's bad enough when you draw your Throne Room without an action card. It has to be drawn with the right card to get the most benefit out of it. If you require drawing three cards, such as Village, Throne Room, and one other, that combo hardly ever comes up.

I do like Throne Room / Feast, though as you say it's transient. Throne Room / Thief works pretty well if you like the Thief, but I don't.

Generally, any time you play the Throne Room it's like you had an extra of the card you're playing it on, plus one action. So it makes sense that it would be the most valuable when played on the highest-cost cards. For 6-cost, Throne Room / Nobles is pretty good. Throne Room / Laboratory is probably better, although occasionally you use Throne Room / Nobles for +6 cards. I don't care for Throne Room / Adventurer. You're likely to end up with a bunch of coins and only one buy. This is another combo that really requires three cards to work, like Market, Throne Room, and Adventurer. So it's just too hard to make it work.
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Greg Jones
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dyfrgi wrote:
A better comparison is Festival or Laboratory - I'd rather have either of those than a Market. Still, even if all three were available, I might mix a couple of Markets in there.

I generally agree that Market is overrated, but it's not terrible.


I understand where this thinking is coming from. The Market is the middle child. Festival, Market, and Laboratory are pretty similar. Each gives you at least +1 action. Then you get a total of 2 cards and/or coins. Festival - +2 coins, Laboratory - +2 cards, Market - one of each. Festival gets +1 more action, Laboratory lacks +buy. One of the main decision points is which 2 you want, coins or cards.

If your average card is worth more than 1 coin, wouldn't you prefer to draw a card? At the start of the game, your average card is worth 7/10 of a coin. It doesn't take long to get the average value up to more than a coin though. So it would seem Laboratory is always the best buy based on that. Sometimes you buy a Festival for the +2 actions. But Market is clearly inferior to Laboratory, right? You trade off 1 card for 1 coin. You get a +buy in the deal, but that's not much.

The error in this thinking can be seen from an extreme case. What's better, a deck of all Laboratories, or a deck of all Markets? A deck of all Laboratories does nothing. That's an extreme case (though a deck of all Markets is actually a competitive deck), but generally the idea is you can't buy up a bunch of Laboratories until you buy a bunch of other cards worth drawing with the Laboratories. You can go ahead and buy up a bunch of Markets whenever you feel like it. It's not bad to buy up a bunch of Laboratories if you keep your original Coppers. By adding only a little more treasure, you can at least manage to buy one Province. But I think there are faster ways to build up a 1-Province-buy deck.
 
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The thing about the Market is that it is rarely a bad idea to improve your Coin incrementally. The Market does so in a seamless way.

The more cards you have in your hand the easier it is to buy a Province. The Market doesn't increase your hand size but it does increase what I call your 'effective hand size'.

I would generally prefer the Laboratory but I happen to think the Laboratory is the best single card in the game so that is no knock on the Market. The Market is a good card that produces steadily improved decks.

- Lex
 
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Robert Freeman
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Wow! That's a lot of very well thought out and intriguing posts! 'Thumbs ups' all around, even to the guy who called me 'clearly crazy'. I might just have to put that on my business card. ^_^

I'm really glad upgrade allows you to just trash without taking a new card. I thought you had to do both, but I was clearly wrong. It's still inferior to remodel or mine, in my opinion, and it's more expensive as well, but (as many mentioned) at least the card cycles, replacing itself with a card and an action (and no, I definitely do not underestimate this ability).

If duke works, then it works. I've just never personally seen it do much for people than clog up their decks and net them a small handful of points. Garden strategies just seem to work a lot better (makes me wonder if dukes should really cost 4 instead of 5).

I still say market is overrated. If you really want to cycle cards so much, then use a great hall. That's a cycling estate for a cost of three, instead of a cycling extra dollar and buy for a cost of five. As I said, on the surface market looks great, but I expect my 5 cost cards to do more for me than give me a dollar and a buy. An extra card from a laboratory, or an extra two dollars and an action from a festival, or an extra two dollars or a redraw/attack option from a minion, are all far better cards than a market. It just doesn't seem to warrant its cost, and it's never been significant in any game I remember playing. Woodcutter, on the other hand, HAS been significant in quite a few games.

On a final note, my favorite card to use in combination with throne room is nobles. Throne rooms and labs are another nice combination.
 
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robertmfreeman wrote:
I still say market is overrated. If you really want to cycle cards so much, then use a great hall. That's a cycling estate for a cost of three, instead of a cycling extra dollar and buy for a cost of five.


Unless there are cards that care about card types (e.g., Ironworks), Great Hall isn't worthwhile early on. Sure, it cycles and so doesn't clog up your deck, but it doesn't accelerate you either. Which is better, the acceleration you get from a good 3-cost card like a Silver, or a single point? In the early to mid game, I would easily take a Market over a Great Hall, and in the late game at 5 coins I'll just buy a Duchy anyway.
 
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Baron is good for early buys, either big or multiple. It's also nice to snag a late estate for tiebreakers. I don't buy more than one usually, but like to have it.

I don't like Adventurer, but have had it used quite effecively against me.

Same for Upgrade, but I still want to try a deck with a lot of these.

Market is where I disagree the most. I love the Market and it's usually my first 5 buy unless the Witch (dependig on my opponents) or Minion are in play. It's not the best at anything, but it can do everything.a little. The extra buys are really nice for Garden decks or to allow multiple VP card purchases at the end. Festival can give you the extra buys and actions, but not the cards. Labs can give you the cards, but not the buys.
 
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qzhdad wrote:
Same for Upgrade, but I still want to try a deck with a lot of these.


Upgrade is powerful, and the fact that it chains is what really makes the card, but you do have to be careful when you have lots of them. The other day I had a game where Upgrade was the only +Action, so I grabbed as many as I could and used them primarily to turn 4-cost cards into Dukes and Duchies. I won the game, but I did trash more than one Gold in the process...
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robertmfreeman wrote:

If duke works, then it works. I've just never personally seen it do much for people than clog up their decks and net them a small handful of points. Garden strategies just seem to work a lot better (makes me wonder if dukes should really cost 4 instead of 5).


The Gardens are better than Dukes. The largest barrier in Dominion is between 4 and 5 Coin. The Feast is specifically intended to help overcome that barrier.

If you had every Duke and every Duchy you would have an effective VP/card ratio of 7.5 per card. You would be lucky to get more 4-5.

Winning with the Duke is all about evaluating the cards that are available in the game and deciding 'Is it worth it?'. The answer depends on the question 'How long will the game last?'.

The Duke becomes a dominant VP effect when you get past the 25 VP barrier, at which point it is basically worth more than 4 Provinces. You need exactly 7 buys to get to that point. Beyond that the Duke starts becoming dominant.

At 9 buys you have 6 Duchy, 3 Dukes worth 36 VP (equivalent to 6 Provinces). That is exactly 9 total 5+ Coin buys for the entire game! At that point your deck can have all kinds of problems and you can still win.

The problem is sustaining a consistent pace of 5 Coin per turn while starting early. So I won't play the Duke strategy unless I feel confident in two things:

1. I can sustain 5 Coin a turn regularly.
2. The game won't end quickly on Province buys.

If that happens I will play the Duke strategy. My opponents inevitably end up buying some of the Duke/Duchy cards to deny me the chance of getting a massive VP lead so the game ends on pile depletion. The two games have been too close for my comfort but it does work.

- Lex

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robertmfreeman wrote:

1. Coppersmith

Good shot at early Gold, with Garden Decks, and when deployed with Nobles, Wishing Well, and Lab.

robertmfreeman wrote:

2. Adventurer

Superior in refined treasure decks, where it has a value of 4-6.
Superior in VP laden decks, wherein it cycles through your VP cards, and for no cost.

robertmfreeman wrote:

3. Baron

You have more than enough Estates to keep it working, even if you don't, it can allow you to obtain more. The Baron gives the best odds for Gold in the game.

robertmfreeman wrote:

4. Duke

You have to aim carefully. You should be aiming to obtain at 6 Duchies, 4 Dukes, as that has a worth of 42 points, or 7 Provinces, and your Dukes=Provinces. If you are playing with multiple opponents, this will easily outweigh their share of Provinces. If you are playing with a single opponent, they have to work through the entire Province deck themselves while you keep grabbing Dukes, something which is much easier to do.

robertmfreeman wrote:

5. Upgrade

This card is on the weak side, I agree. Its trashing power, while efficient, still results in it not truly being a "free" card. It can't get you Provinces, it forces you to trash if you want to keep going through your deck, and there is only so much to be gained in the process.

robertmfreeman wrote:

6. Tribute

If multi-type cards are out, this is uber as those cards are all very popular. Besides that, it works well in conjunction with engine decks. It gives a better than average yield for a typical engine card (+4 stuff the majority of the time), but at the cost of it being random. If you have an engine already going with multiple actions and card drawers floating around, it will ensure that it keeps going. Very nice when used in conjunction with Throne Room.

robertmfreeman wrote:

7. Market

Is good for the same reason Laboratory is good. It improves your hand for free, with no reliance on other cards. A 5 card hand with 1 Money has a significantly better chance of buying a Gold/Province than a 5 card hand with 0 Money

robertmfreeman wrote:

8. Saboteur

I agree.
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LexH wrote:
The largest barrier in Dominion is between 4 and 5 Coin. The Feast is specifically intended to help overcome that barrier.


As I alluded to above, I think this is also where Upgrade really shines.
 
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Peristarkawan wrote:
LexH wrote:
The largest barrier in Dominion is between 4 and 5 Coin. The Feast is specifically intended to help overcome that barrier.


As I alluded to above, I think this is also where Upgrade really shines.

Except that in any situation where you could Upgrade from 4 to 5, you could Remodel from 4 to 6. Which is not one but two large gaps crossed.
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Greg Jones
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wodan46 wrote:
Peristarkawan wrote:
LexH wrote:
The largest barrier in Dominion is between 4 and 5 Coin. The Feast is specifically intended to help overcome that barrier.


As I alluded to above, I think this is also where Upgrade really shines.

Except that in any situation where you could Upgrade from 4 to 5, you could Remodel from 4 to 6. Which is not one but two large gaps crossed.


You will be left with a 3-card hand and no actions.
Feast will leave you with a 4-card hand and no actions.
Upgrade will leave you with a 4-card hand and 1 action.

I think the comparison between Feast and Upgrade is good. Upgrade can turn any 4-cost card into a Feast, and has +1 action.
 
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Andrew Hardin
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wodan46 wrote:
Peristarkawan wrote:
LexH wrote:
The largest barrier in Dominion is between 4 and 5 Coin. The Feast is specifically intended to help overcome that barrier.


As I alluded to above, I think this is also where Upgrade really shines.

Except that in any situation where you could Upgrade from 4 to 5, you could Remodel from 4 to 6. Which is not one but two large gaps crossed.


Remodel does a better job upgrading in 1 step. The problem with Remodel is you can't chain the effect.

If Remodel had +1 Action it would be better. If Remodel had +1 Card I might even claim it is better. Instead they are two cards doing slightly different things.

I have played my share of Remodel decks. They have a critical weakness that was pointed out above. Unless you have a lot of help Remodel leaves you 3 cards and no Actions. The end result is that you are essentially getting one new buy (usually a weak buy) and replacing a mediocre card with a good card. You could often get the same effect by simply having Coin in your hand.

Upgrade is a chaining card. Just like the Market the chaining ability can be crucial. The player who manages his Coin and his Actions is often the winner.

- Lex

 
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Matthew Calhoun
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Adventurer is a strong card which I have used to great advantage on many occasions. It's situation dependent, in that it requires other cards on the board that let you trash coppers, but it usually gives you 4-5 coin. When I have an adventurer or two in my deck, I will almost always buy a province after I play it. This card is really very strong when used properly and I think you are dead wrong to discount it. It doesn't hurt that you can remodel it into a province and that it's a great counter to thief. It also has a "chancellor type" effect, in that it often will allow you to reshuffle at the end of your turn.


Upgrade is f amazing, and if you think remodel is better I strongly disagree. The problem with remodel is that if you draw it with other non plus actions then one of your cards is dead. Upgrade is a card that can virtually win the game on it's own, and I am saying that after many games played on BSW. Having multiple upgrade allows you to trash cards rapidly, much more rapidly than having multiple remodels, and early in the game this trash ability can rapidly turn your deck into a powerful engine when used correctly.

Saboteur is also a game breaking card in my opinion, simply because it is the only card that allows you to trash provinces from your opponents deck. In the end game stages, when there is a VP race, trashing your opponents province or duchy can easily win you the game.
 
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I'll only comment on the cards I've used - I only use the base set, so my experiences may be different from yours.

First of all, allow me to state the obvious: a card's usefulness can vary dramatically depending on what other cards are available for purchase. I'll try to be as positive about each as I can to demonstrate potential use.

1) Coppersmith
The Coppersmith is a relatively poor card in most circumstances (except perhaps in the very early game, but you'll sooner or later run out of coppers and be stuck with a coppersmith or two in your deck), but in a game with no other means of trashing your coppers (no Mines, Chapels, or to a lesser degree, Remodels), or in a game where you can Remodel it later into something else, it can be rather good. In the early game, it can allow you to make a jump to buying Silvers and Golds fairly consistently, but it will eventually lose its value and need to be trashed somehow if possible. As I said earlier, this card really comes into its own if you have no other means of trashing your Coppers - in that case, you'll want one or two per deck. I'd rather draw a useless Coppersmith in a hand full of golds and silvers every now and then than draw consistently watered-down Copper treasures throughout the whole game.

2) Adventurer
You really need a sleek and sexy deck to make the Adventurer work, but when you do, he can be quite amazing. Any actions that provide you with extra buys and/or actions make good accompaniments to the adventurer, and you'll definitely need some means of trashing Coppers and later on Silvers to create a high Gold concentration. In a deck loaded with Golds, a Market+Adventurer (or Festival+Adventurer) is effectively 2 buys with an awful lot of money. I've seen two provinces purchased in a turn due to the Adventurer's help. With that said, this card is highly dependent upon having other cards around to provide extra actions/buys and cards that allow you to trash your lower-value treasure cards. If you've got Remodels/Chapels/Mines and Festivals/Markets or Villages+Woodcutters, the Adventurer can really do some amazing things. Otherwise, it's subpar.

7) Market
The market does effectively cycle itself and provide +1 coin and +1 buy. On its own its rather subpar, but the extra buy for "nothing" is the real power with this card. Play it with anything that gets you more purchasing power and you can really get some buying traction going on - Adventurers, more Markets, Festivals, Council Rooms, and Libraries all make good companions to the Market.
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Snipafist wrote:
1) Coppersmith
The Coppersmith is a relatively poor card in most circumstances (except perhaps in the very early game, but you'll sooner or later run out of coppers and be stuck with a coppersmith or two in your deck), but in a game with no other means of trashing your coppers (no Mines, Chapels, or to a lesser degree, Remodels), or in a game where you can Remodel it later into something else, it can be rather good. In the early game, it can allow you to make a jump to buying Silvers and Golds fairly consistently, but it will eventually lose its value and need to be trashed somehow if possible. As I said earlier, this card really comes into its own if you have no other means of trashing your Coppers - in that case, you'll want one or two per deck. I'd rather draw a useless Coppersmith in a hand full of golds and silvers every now and then than draw consistently watered-down Copper treasures throughout the whole game.


I think you're confusing Coppersmith with Moneylender. The Coppersmith derives extra value from your Coppers without trashing them.
 
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Adventurer: Mostly useful when you don't have many coins. I recently played a game where my oppponent was using Swindler to turn my Gold into Adventurers. I managed to Remodel one of them into a Province, but the other 3 were very helpful in helping me to get the remaining money in my deck (some of it was being stolen by a Thief as well).

Baron: Currently, the best start in terms of $6 on turn 3 is Baron/Silver, which I think gives something like 40% chacne of $6 on turn 3. It also gives a remote (in the order of 5%) chance of going 6/6 on turns 3 and 4. Outside of the start of the game, it can be useful during the mid and late game to help you reach $8 or another money milestone, and don't forget that the Estates will give you points as well. It's also a very good "card advantage" card in Gardens games.

Upgrade: Can be very useful if the Swindler (or anything that throws Curses) is around, as it lets me chase my Coppers out of the deck first. Also, Estate to Silver is useful as well. Can be very good against the Torturer. I take the Curse and then Upgrade it out next turn.

Market: Almost never the star of the show, but nearly always a good foundation.
 
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Peristarkawan wrote:

I think you're confusing Coppersmith with Moneylender. The Coppersmith derives extra value from your Coppers without trashing them.


Pardon me, you're right. The Coppersmith is an Intrigue card and it is not that good. Nevermind.
 
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