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Dominion: Intrigue» Forums » Rules

Subject: Saboteur confusion rss

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Thomas Bird
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I'm having an issue with Saboteur on which cards you can gain from trashing the card. In the rules for Saboteur, it says "He trashes that card and may gain a card costing at most 2 Treasure less than it." The "at most" is extremely confusing. Does that mean I could get either get a 2 treasure less, 1 treasure less, or 0 treasure less card from the trashed card?
 
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Chris Weeks
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Yes, if the player trashes a 5 cost card they MAY gain something costing 3,2,1,0. If say they trash a province then they MAY gain something costing 6,5,4,3,2,1,0.
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Thomas Bird
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Alright I think I get it now. My confusion was that if I trashed a Saboteur I thought the card meant I could get any card costing 5, 4 or 3 since it said at most. Thanks for the info, it really helped.
 
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A Swenson
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you don't trash the saboteur, you trash other players cards and they may take a replacement card worth at most 2 less than the card trashed.
 
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James Newton
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Mr T00mbes wrote:
Alright I think I get it now. My confusion was that if I trashed a Saboteur I thought the card meant I could get any card costing 5, 4 or 3 since it said at most. Thanks for the info, it really helped.
I must admit, I hadn't seen the ambiguity in the description, but yes the correct interpretation is that he may gain a card costing "at most (two coins less than it)" (and not "(at most 2 coins) less than it").

The Additional Card Description section of the rule book is there to clarify these sorts of things, and that clearly gives the example that if you trash a card costing 5 then you may gain a card costing up to 3.

Edit to fix stoopid typo
 
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Thomas Bird
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Aeek wrote:
you don't trash the saboteur, you trash other players cards and they may take a replacement card worth at most 2 less than the card trashed.
I was using Saboteur as an example of a 5 cost card to trash. Sorry for the confusion

I read the rules before I posted the question, however I didn't read the line "may gain a card costing up to 3" carefully enough. Thanks again!
 
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Dick Hunt
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churchmouse wrote:
The Additional Card Description section of the rule book is there to clarify these sorts of things, and that clearly gives the example that if you trash a card costing 5 then you may gain a card costing up to 3.

Edit to fix stoopid typo
The problem here is that this example is painfully obvious. 5-3=2 isn't difficult math, and there are always 3 coin cards available because SILVER costs 3 coins. It would be far more helpful if they used a LESS obvious one. For instance:

I'm forced to trash a Silver card, which costs three. Two less than three is one, and there is no card available that costs one coin. What the hell do we do? We look up the card description which simply repeats what the card says and then gives an outrageously obvious and unhelpful example...

So we winged it, spent the rest of the game bitching about the Saboteur card screwing up the whole game, and didn't care if we never saw Intrigue again. We'll probably get over it, but we're still pissed.

How did we wing it? Trash a Silver, gain a Copper. You're losing more value than you're supposed to lose (Silver costs 3, Copper 0), but at least you're getting SOMETHING in return. Of course, Saboteur still ruined that particular game for us (our first with the Intrigue expansion WHICH DID NOT HELP OUR MOOD).

We quickly tired of paying for cards that cost 5 or 6 coins only to lose them to the Saboteur. And since trashing Silver and gaining Copper quickly removed money from the game, we never had enough money to buy anything. Then we spiralled into "Fight Saboteurs with Saboteurs," and the rest of the game experience was absolutely miserable.

What did we do wrong, and how do they justify NOT clearing up this huge rules hole in the card text explanation that should be in the rulebook?
 
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Chris in Kansai
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DSHStratRat2 wrote:
churchmouse wrote:
if you trash a card costing 5 then you may gain a card costing up to 3.

The problem here is that this example is painfully obvious. 5-3=2 isn't difficult math, and there are always 3 coin cards available because SILVER costs 3 coins. It would be far more helpful if they used a LESS obvious one. For instance:

I'm forced to trash a Silver card, which costs three. Two less than three is one, and there is no card available that costs one coin. What the hell do we do? We look up the card description which simply repeats what the card says and then gives an outrageously obvious and unhelpful example...

So we winged it, spent the rest of the game bitching about the Saboteur card screwing up the whole game, and didn't care if we never saw Intrigue again. We'll probably get over it, but we're still pissed.

How did we wing it? Trash a Silver, gain a Copper. You're losing more value than you're supposed to lose (Silver costs 3, Copper 0), but at least you're getting SOMETHING in return. Of course, Saboteur still ruined that particular game for us (our first with the Intrigue expansion WHICH DID NOT HELP OUR MOOD).

We quickly tired of paying for cards that cost 5 or 6 coins only to lose them to the Saboteur. And since trashing Silver and gaining Copper quickly removed money from the game, we never had enough money to buy anything. Then we spiralled into "Fight Saboteurs with Saboteurs," and the rest of the game experience was absolutely miserable.

What did we do wrong, and how do they justify NOT clearing up this huge rules hole in the card text explanation that should be in the rulebook?
The operative word here is "you may gain a card..." - in your example, if a silver gets trashed you're probably better off not replacing it with anything rather than cluttering your deck with unwanted coppers.
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Dick Hunt
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DSHStratRat2 wrote:
churchmouse wrote:
The Additional Card Description section of the rule book is there to clarify these sorts of things, and that clearly gives the example that if you trash a card costing 5 then you may gain a card costing up to 3.

Edit to fix stoopid typo
The problem here is that this example is painfully obvious. 5-3=2 isn't difficult math, and there are always 3 coin cards available because SILVER costs 3 coins. It would be far more helpful if they used a LESS obvious one. For instance:

I'm forced to trash a Silver card, which costs three. Two less than three is one, and there is no card available that costs one coin. What the hell do we do? We look up the card description which simply repeats what the card says and then gives an outrageously obvious and unhelpful example...

So we winged it, spent the rest of the game bitching about the Saboteur card screwing up the whole game, and didn't care if we never saw Intrigue again. We'll probably get over it, but we're still pissed.

How did we wing it? Trash a Silver, gain a Copper. You're losing more value than you're supposed to lose (Silver costs 3, Copper 0), but at least you're getting SOMETHING in return. Of course, Saboteur still ruined that particular game for us (our first with the Intrigue expansion WHICH DID NOT HELP OUR MOOD).

We quickly tired of paying for cards that cost 5 or 6 coins only to lose them to the Saboteur. And since trashing Silver and gaining Copper quickly removed money from the game, we never had enough money to buy anything. Then we spiralled into "Fight Saboteurs with Saboteurs," and the rest of the game experience was absolutely miserable.

What did we do wrong, and how do they justify NOT clearing up this huge rules hole in the card text explanation that should be in the rulebook?
I just found the answer to my question in the rulebook. Basically, when following the instructions on any action card, you have to do as much of the action as you can even if you can't do everything the action instructs you to do.

We should have been trashing our Silver cards and getting nothing in return because Saboteur lets you replace your trashed card with one that costs at most 2 coins less. Since there were no cards we could buy for 1 coin (2 less than what Silver costs), we should have done as much of the action as we could: trash the Silver and then get nothing in return.

This endears the Saboteur card to me even less....
 
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Pawel Pawlak
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DSHStratRat2 wrote:
We should have been trashing our Silver cards and getting nothing in return because Saboteur lets you replace your trashed card with one that costs at most 2 coins less. Since there were no cards we could buy for 1 coin (2 less than what Silver costs), we should have done as much of the action as we could: trash the Silver and then get nothing in return.
If I'm reading you correctly, you get it the wrong way. The "at most" does not apply to "less", it applies to the cost of the card that you may gain. It's like "you may gain a card that costs no more than (cost of the trashed card - $2)". So it is legitimate to gain that darn Copper (cost: $0) when your Silver gets trashed (cost: $3). But of course you are not obliged to do it (you may choose to gain nothing), since there's a "you may".
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Matt E
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Generally, Silver is the best card to lose to a Saboteur. It's cheap and readily available. You usually don't want to gain a Copper when your Silver gets hit, though there are exceptions (Counting House, etc.).
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Carl Bussema
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Buying extra silver is my favorite defense against the saboteur, other than moat (and maybe market square).

Saboteur is a nasty card that a lot of people simply hate. I rarely buy one myself because it's too unpredictable... it could screw my opponents or be only a minor hindrance (e.g., blowing up silver) while I waste a terminal action. Its potential to blow up provinces is really nasty if it hits (one of the reasons people really really hate it), but it's hard to rely on that unless someone is doing something crazy like a 6 to 10 card deck, which is just begging to be sabotaged.
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Michael Brandt
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I feel like the rulebook answers all the questions here pretty plainly whistle

(emphasis added)

Intrigue Rulebook wrote:
Saboteur - Each other player turns over the top cards of his deck until he reveals one costing 3 coins or more. If a player needs to shuffle to continue revealing cards, he does not shuffle in the already revealed cards. If he goes through all of his cards without finding a card costing 3 coins or more, he just discards everything revealed and is done. If he does find a card costing 3 coins or more, he trashes it, and then may choose to gain a card costing at most 2 coins less than the trashed card. For example, if he trashed a card costing 5 coins, he may gain a card costing up to 3 coins. The gained card must be from the Supply and is put into his discard pile, as are his revealed cards. Costs of cards are affected by Bridge.
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Dave Wight
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If I discard my draw pile through, is that tough luck for the saboteur or do I shuffle and redraw until I find something worth 3 or more?
 
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Donald X.
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Wightrash wrote:
If I discard my draw pile through, is that tough luck for the saboteur or do I shuffle and redraw until I find something worth 3 or more?
You shuffle (but not the cards already revealed) and keep going.
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George I.
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Wightrash wrote:
If I discard my draw pile through, is that tough luck for the saboteur or do I shuffle and redraw until I find something worth 3 or more?
What Donald said; from a technical view, you *reveal* your draw pile; if there are no more cards, then you shuffle the discard pile and continue. You do not shuffle the revealed cards, because they are not in the discard pile; they are in "the-land-of-revealed-cards". All revealed cards (sans the one that was trashed) are discarded at the end of the Saboteur action.
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