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Subject: Fan Expansion: Strife rss

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Orson Bradford
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I've been cooking on an expansion for a while, which I think is in pretty good shape to share: http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife

The basic theme is warfare and Attack cards.

Apologies if I've inadvertently copied any other fan ideas. I have not kept up on Fan expansions lately, and there are certain ideas I'm sure occur to everyone. My card names are certainly not unique, but I wanted what felt like a cohesive theme.

Thanks for your thoughts and comments!
 
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Drew Spencer
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Here's my feedback fwiw:

Cannon: Too brutal of an attack. As a cantrip (+1 Card, +1 Action) that triggers on anyone with 4+ cards in hand, it can lead to forced trashing of two of the five cards in your hand. Compare to Swindler, which is a very rough attack even though it does not affect players' hands and gives an equal-cost replacement.

Mercenaries: Strange mechanic, seems worth trying. Note that in a 2-player game, the other player will always discard the highest cost Treasure card.

Archer: Another forced trash. This one could have an interesting "chicken" mechanic going on, but the risk of trashing a good card may be too strong for other players to risk revealing something good.

Conscription: What does it mean for something to be "put out of play?" Trashed or placed on a mat, I suppose? You should say so explicitly rather than making up new terms. Otherwise, I like the idea; kind of a Golem/Tribute combination.

Encampment: Might be a bit weak for $3, though I'm not sure. Compare to Mining Village or Great Hall.

Knight: The way it is now, if you named "Action" and most cards were Treasure cards, you would get +2 Coins (because most cards were Treasure) and +1 Action (most cards were not the type you named). Is that right? What if you're playing a 3-player game and one player reveals an Action card and the other a Treasure card?

Prize Fight: Could be worded better. How about "...the player who reveals the single highest cost card (if any) may gain a Prize or a Duchy. All other players discard the revealed card. All players: +1 Card"

Banner: Should it be "when another player plays an Attack or reveals a Reaction"?

Dungeon: What does it mean to "form[] a new deck"? Shuffle?

Messenger: Seems weak at $4, though it's hard to tell.

Sapper: Okay this is really nitpicky, but on most of your cards you use "they" as a gender-neutral singular, but on this one you use "his."

Siege: As soon as you play this it becomes in play and thus discards itself. It doesn't look like that was your intent, so maybe just change "...any copies of this..." to "...any other copies of Siege..."

Soldiers: Seems strong for $4. Sure it could help other players early in the game, but that just means you're not likely to buy one of these early in the game. Compare to Saboteur.

General: Seems strong for $5, though it's hard to tell. Also if multiple players collect these, only one player will get to play them, meaning that the other players will not be able to attack that player, so they will get to play them again the following turn. That's a very "rich get richer" mechanic which seems troublesome. Is that how it works in actual play?

Gibbet: More forced trashing. I guess you like forced trashing, which I suppose is fine.

Admiral: The discard pile is face up, so how do you prevent players from looking at a face down set aside card that just got discarded? Also, what happens when you discard a token?

Others I can't really comment on without playing them, especially because you do some strange things that are difficult to compare to other cards. Over all, these seem like pretty reasonable (and often quite creative) ideas.
 
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Kevin Costello
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Some crazy stuff going on there. I think it would be hard to comment too much without playing them, but I will say there is an awful lot of words on there, and quite a few of the cards are pretty hard to wrap my head around what they're supposed to be doing without multiple readings. Regardless of balance/rules functionality issues, I think the set could probably benefit quite a bit from some streamlining.

For example, I think Cannon is actually a pretty cool card idea. I love the flavor of smashing things into bits, and I think between the 4-card bit and the victim being able to choose what gets discarded, I don't really think it would be overpowered. BUT, I think the potion part is silly. I would be really surprised if players ever opted to trash a card with potion in its cost. So in practice, I'd suspect this is a line or two of card text in an already super complicated set that doesn't really serve a purpose. I think Cannon would play almost identically if it just ignored potion cost.

Similarly, there are lots of these cards that involve everyone at the table making lots of choices and often make special exceptions for the current player. Every time you do something like this, there's a significant cost in terms of card complexity, card text/readability, and game slowdown, and I'm skeptical that it's worth it. Like, if somebody were to play 3 or 4 Knights in a turn, we could literally spend a minute or two (or even more with AP-prone players) resolving what ultimately amounts to playing a Lab and a Woodcutter. It feels like a huge waste of time for a random combination of effects that aren't even that interesting. In general, a lot of these just feel like even if they're balanced, they'll cause the game's momentum to grind to a halt every time they hit the table.
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Orson Bradford
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Thanks for the comments, you've made some good points and suggestions. I'm considering some edits.

It's also interesting to hear perceptions of how some cards would play. I've found through testing that many of these cards don't play quite like I would expect at first reading. Although that's true of many Dominion cards in my experience.

I've written up detailed description of all the cards, which have some examples and hopefully answer rules questions about how they work.

Cannon
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=cannon
In the early game, I've found the cannon helps other players more than it hurts, by thinning out Coppers and Estates. But in late game, once Coppers run out (and they actually can in games using this) it becomes devastating.

Battlefield
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=battle...
Kind of a Fairgrounds/Silk Road like mechanic, but all-or-nothing. I didn't realize at first that it scales unevenly and becomes weaker with more players.

Mercenaries
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=mercen...
A low cost attack with a musical chairs mechanic. It is difficult to see how to build a strategy around it.

Raiders
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=raider...
A risky Wishing Well.

Treaty
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=treaty
Everybody gets to punish cards they don't like. It pushes the line a bit on the Dominion principle of non-political effects.

Archer
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=archer
It was intended to be a very flexible hand disruption attack. I've found it usually works out as a weak Ghost Ship and slow trasher. The forced trashing effect is rare.

Conscription
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=conscr...
Supposed to be a weak Possession like effect. Good point about the wording "put out of play". I mean to contrast with "in play", perhaps "taken out of play" would be better?

Encampment
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=encamp...
You might be right that it's a bit weak. It is similar to the Pawn, too.

Knight
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=knight
The mechanics came out a bit more complex than I originally intended, but this card has an interesting bluffing mini-game in it. Check the examples I give on this page, for different outcomes.

Prize Fight
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=prize_...
Another mini-game type card. I wanted to try another way to get Prizes. I will consider the wording as you suggest. it's quite simple once you play it.

Tribunal
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=tribun...
An Envoy which affects all players.

Wall
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=wall
An alternate Moat-like defense card.

Banner
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=banner
I believe revealing is also considered playing a Reaction? I was trying to cover reactions which don't use the term 'reveal' (like Horse Traders or Fool's Gold).
This came out of several card ideas merging together, which seemed to work.

Dungeon
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=dungeo...
A way to disrupt opponents decks and delay useful cards as well as thinning your own deck.

Messenger
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=messen...
Retrieves useful cards. It doesn't seem too weak.

Sapper
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=sapper
Rabble like effect.

Siege
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=siege
This would make a game grind to a halt if many were in play, so it needs to remove other copies. That was a good point about the wording, I will clarify it.

Soldiers
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=soldie...
I think it is a bit weaker than Saboteur in that it can miss sometimes.

Cavalry
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=cavalr...
I'm pleased with how the "play when you have no Actions" mechanic works out. It is an interesting twist on Village Action splitting.

General
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=genera...
I don't see the "rich get richer" effect when I test this, since it hurts all players who get too many of these, including yourself. It's basically a Laboratory, but one which doesn't play well with itself.

Gibbet
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=gibbet
I guess I do like forced trashing. I find this card fun. This card does have the feeling of a game of "chicken" as the active player can sacrifice valuable cards in an attempt to hit higher cost targets.

Revolutionary
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=revolu...
A Forge like mechanic but gaining multiple cards.

Stockpile
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=stockp...
An accumulating Coin token generator.

Tariff
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=tariff
This was inspired by Embargo, but with a different deterrent method.

Admiral
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=admira...
A way to disrupt tokens and otherwise untouchable cards. The intention is to prevent looking at opponent's face down cards before they are discarded.

Frontier
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=fronti...
My shortest card text (yay!), it provides a way to gamble on which way the game will end.
 
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Kevin Costello
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nosro wrote:

Banner
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=banner
I believe revealing is also considered playing a Reaction? I was trying to cover reactions which don't use the term 'reveal' (like Horse Traders or Fool's Gold).


Revealing a reaction card is definitely not considered playing it. As worded now, it would trigger when someone plays a Witch/Spy/Etc, or when someone plays a Moat for +2 Cards/Secret Chamber for coins/Etc. But it would not trigger when someone reveals a Moat to block a Witch. I don't think there's anything you can trigger off to make it do exactly what you want. Probably best to just leave it as triggering off attacks. Reactions are an edge case that don't really come up that often anyway, and similar to some of my above comments, I think what you're trying to do here is adding complexity and rules ambiguity for not much gain in terms of gameplay.
 
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J
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Alright I'll throw in my 2 cents and address some of the cards.

nosro wrote:

Cannon
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=cannon
In the early game, I've found the cannon helps other players more than it hurts, by thinning out Coppers and Estates. But in late game, once Coppers run out (and they actually can in games using this) it becomes devastating.

Hard time seeing this card as a positive card. Early game it helps you get rid of bad cards and mid game it's like playing a virtual savager on your opponents. Depending on how fast they can end the game it actually seems a little weak to me since multiple.

On the other hand if the coppers run out it lends itself to random trashing since you can play a lot of them. Basically it has the saboteur problem in that it lends itself to one player investing in them heavily (made hard to do by the potion cost) and then they can screw around with the other players and make it not fun. However they won't actually be able to win themselves cause they need to invest in a lot of them to get past the point of "I'm helping my opponent's" to I'm now hurting them or else the opponents will end the game way too soon for cannon to really hurt them.


Quote:
Battlefield
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=battle...
Kind of a Fairgrounds/Silk Road like mechanic, but all-or-nothing. I didn't realize at first that it scales unevenly and becomes weaker with more players.

Player scaling problem not to mention its a huge gamble overall. Seems very unworth trying for in most sets cause getting each to be worth 2 points would be a challenge.


Quote:
Mercenaries
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=mercen...
A low cost attack with a musical chairs mechanic. It is difficult to see how to build a strategy around it.

Don't see why anyone would ever buy this card. It's net effect on your hand is a weak cellar action and +2 cards and a small attack on your opponent that probably will help them cycle their deck not to mention you lose the card.


Quote:

First choice seems way too risky to ever be a viable option cept early game or with the help of a look ahead card. Second option is ungodly OP as it would give you the ability to rush end the game with a bunch of copies of the card.


Quote:
Treaty
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=treaty
Everybody gets to punish cards they don't like. It pushes the line a bit on the Dominion principle of non-political effects.

Well it's definitely interesting I'll give you that one. Scales poorly will lots of people playing since it can effectively lock down the game and make practically everything forbidden with multiple plays which would make the game ultra boring since it would basically make everyone play big money decks

Quote:

Archer
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=archer
It was intended to be a very flexible hand disruption attack. I've found it usually works out as a weak Ghost Ship and slow trash. The forced trashing effect is rare.

General consensuses is rare is not good enough. Might want to add "For each revealed card if it costs the same or less than the card you revealed you may trash it. Otherwise discard/put on top of deck" to make the forced trashing extremely rare.

Quote:
Conscription
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=conscr...
Supposed to be a weak Possession like effect. Good point about the wording "put out of play". I mean to contrast with "in play", perhaps "taken out of play" would be better?

"Set aside" is the words you are looking for (I think). Seems fair. Playing a random action (which can be very good) effectively without any real harm done to anyone.

Quote:
Encampment
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=encamp...
You might be right that it's a bit weak. It is similar to the Pawn, too.

Seems pretty good to me. The closest comparison I'd see is Upgrade and spice merchant which is often used just to trash a copper. I see nothing wrong with this card the way it is as it is an excellent trasher. If anything it might be a little too good since trashing a copper and +card is identical to the benefit usually taken with spice merchant.

Quote:
Knight
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=knight
The mechanics came out a bit more complex than I originally intended, but this card has an interesting bluffing mini-game in it. Check the examples I give on this page, for different outcomes.

Not touching this one. Seems like a pain to balance and scales widely depending on the number of people playing.

Quote:
Prize Fight
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=prize_...
Another mini-game type card. I wanted to try another way to get Prizes. I will consider the wording as you suggest. it's quite simple once you play it.

Don't see anything obviously wrong here.

Quote:
Tribunal
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=tribun...
An Envoy which affects all players.

Seems like a poor card overall since the chance of screwing yourself if high when you play it. Don't see any serious players buying it.

Quote:
Wall
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=wall
An alternate Moat-like defense card.

Actually like this one. Slow trasher overall with increased value in attacking games as do all reaction cards.Only problem I see is it's very very weak against all attacks that give +1 action that get played a lot like minion. I'd suggest wording it in such a way that the player is immune to all attacks played until the beginning of his next turn.


Quote:
Banner
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=banner
I believe revealing is also considered playing a Reaction? I was trying to cover reactions which don't use the term 'reveal' (like Horse Traders or Fool's Gold).
This came out of several card ideas merging together, which seemed to work.

Yeah it doesn't matter how you word cause this card can never work. A reaction like moat can be revealed as many times as the player likes in response to an attack. This means if I play Banner and another player plays an attack a third player with a moat in his hand can choose to give me an infinite number of points. This alone makes the current design of the card completely invalid and unusable.


Quote:
Soldiers
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=soldie...
I think it is a bit weaker than Saboteur in that it can miss sometimes.

You're kidding right? Saboteur cannot specifically target green cards (the cards you actually want to target with saboteur), yours does, Saboteur gives the person playing the card no benefit, yours does not to mention yours is cheaper. Most people will want to play with this about as much as they want to play with saboteur with is never.


Frontier
http://nosro.net/games/dominion/strife/card.php?title=fronti...
My shortest card text (yay!), it provides a way to gamble on which way the game will end. [/q]
If by yay! you mean no!!! than yay! cause this card should not cost 7. Basically no one is ever going to buy it when they have 8+ money to spend since the liklihood it would be better than a provenice is pitifully low. We already have gardens which does the "buy me out and empty 2 other piles quickly" theme well enough making this card extremely weak. By the time you can afford it you will likely be buying provences all the time instead.
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Orson Bradford
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I agree with you on the set being overly complex, and I am going to try my best to streamline the cards.

My first version of the Cannon card didn't have the Potion component. I added it later in testing. A goal for this set was to add more re-playability and interesting combinations with official expansions. I feel Alchemy is getting marginalized as no new Potion cost cards get introduced, so I wanted to put some effort toward expanding Alchemy. As it stood, the Cannon would devalue Alchemy cards even more by ignoring Potion costs, and so I decided to rewrite the Cannon this way. But I may revisit a non-Potion version.

I can also see your second point about cards which slow the momentum of the game, like Knight. On the other hand if all the players are engaged, I think it might be time well spent. I wanted to make a set which provided more interaction between the players even when it was not their turn. A single player running extensive combinations by themselves, even if it is done fast, can be a bit tiresome sometimes. So several Knights in a row might equal the final effects of a Laboratory and a Woodcutter, but there have been a series of significant choices made by all the players and they end up with a modified hand of cards, based on those choices.

kevincos wrote:
Some crazy stuff going on there. I think it would be hard to comment too much without playing them, but I will say there is an awful lot of words on there, and quite a few of the cards are pretty hard to wrap my head around what they're supposed to be doing without multiple readings. Regardless of balance/rules functionality issues, I think the set could probably benefit quite a bit from some streamlining.

For example, I think Cannon is actually a pretty cool card idea. I love the flavor of smashing things into bits, and I think between the 4-card bit and the victim being able to choose what gets discarded, I don't really think it would be overpowered. BUT, I think the potion part is silly. I would be really surprised if players ever opted to trash a card with potion in its cost. So in practice, I'd suspect this is a line or two of card text in an already super complicated set that doesn't really serve a purpose. I think Cannon would play almost identically if it just ignored potion cost.

Similarly, there are lots of these cards that involve everyone at the table making lots of choices and often make special exceptions for the current player. Every time you do something like this, there's a significant cost in terms of card complexity, card text/readability, and game slowdown, and I'm skeptical that it's worth it. Like, if somebody were to play 3 or 4 Knights in a turn, we could literally spend a minute or two (or even more with AP-prone players) resolving what ultimately amounts to playing a Lab and a Woodcutter. It feels like a huge waste of time for a random combination of effects that aren't even that interesting. In general, a lot of these just feel like even if they're balanced, they'll cause the game's momentum to grind to a halt every time they hit the table.
 
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Greg Slagel

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Fun cards! I like the interactivity and aggression theme that still generally respects Donald's "Unofficial Rules of Dominion." They seem well thought out and many of them would change the game significantly.
 
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J Kenntoft
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Looks very nice! I would love to give them a shot, but i wonder how to play fan made expansion of a card game?

How can you print them so they looks exaclty lika other Dominion cards??

Or are sleeves a must?


//Jay
 
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Encampment
I feel like 2-cost cards are the hardest to design. This strikes me as a good one.


Mercenaries
So if a single Philosopher's Stone gets discarded (3P), then it is "unclear" whose treasure is highest cost and Mercenaries goes to the lefthand player, is that correct?

In strictly flavorful terms, I love this card. It's awfully busy though.


Knight
Perhaps this shouldn't have the type Attack. It allows each opponent to discard and replace the worst card in his hand. Knight plays more like Tribute.


Prize Fight
Nice tension. Do I risk losing my Gold in hopes of winning the Prize? Or play it safe and reveal an Estate, giving someone else the Prize??


Battlefield
This seems extremely difficult to pull off. Why did you raise the cost from 2 to 4? Even 3 seems too high. Am I missing something?


Dungeon
Good themed card. Seems too weak for the cost. It'll often miss, its effect will be felt slowly, and it does nothing for the active player. Saboteur doesn't ever miss.


Profiteer
The card text conflicts with the 'details' text in Option 1. Card text makes gaining a card conditional upon having trashed a card. The 'details' text says you can gain a 4-coin card if you had nothing to trash.


Siege
If I have a Siege in play and you play a Siege, do you have to discard a card before my Siege leaves play?

I think you are playing the Throne Room interaction incorrectly. TR does not make copies; instead you play the same card twice. I believe that playing the same Siege a second time should not cause itself to be discarded, that's a fairly significant departure from Dominion rules.

Also, if you want Siege to affect Reaction cards when they are revealed, I think it needs to say that on the card. Dominion rules explicitly state that revealing a Reaction is not the same as playing it (I believe). So as written, Siege would not affect them.

Neat theme, but I'm not sure Siege justifies its complexity.



Soldiers
Interesting attack card. I like that it recognizes how effective discarding/replacing a hand with no victory cards can be as an attack.


Wall
Nice! (I'm a big Island fan...)


Gibbet
Whew, 5 might be too low.
 
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Terry Donahue
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carnalito wrote:
How can you print [fan expansion cards] so they look exactly like other Dominion cards??

I think that with the right kind of printer you could print directly onto the blank cards that come with Dominion expansions + a promo pack, or print onto clear labels and stick them onto the blanks.

But I think the best solution is to print them onto regular paper, cut them slightly smaller than the cards, clip off a bit of the corners, and slide them into sleeves with a regular card on the back. I even arrange the fan variant card images in GIMP/Photoshop so that they're slightly overlapping in a grid, so with one cut between the cards and just inside the outer edges, they all end up slightly smaller than the Dominion cards.

I bought an extra cards-only expansion to get a few hundred cards for this purpose and it works great.
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Christian @BoardGameMonster
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Use black-backed card sleeves and then you can't tell the difference between your old/new/printed cards. Works like a charm but it does take roughly a WHOLE DAY to sleeve an entire set of Dominion + all the official expansions!
 
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Brett Brimmer
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Looks pretty cool, I like the way you have little competitions Tournament-style with cards like Prize fight, General, and Battlefield. That's a really cool way to have a warfare theme without actually just having a ton of attack cards. Also I think emptying supply piles is a fine mechanic but I feel like the cards that do should hit like two-three cards at a time, or maybe one card if it's a victory/curse pile and three if it's in the normal supply? I mean the effect gives you absolutely no tangible resources, it just contributes to your strategy, so you really have to make each count hit. It's not a mechanic Donald X. has been fond of but I think it has legs.

Frontier is also a subtle player interaction card that maybe makes you want to end the game faster or not buy from certain piles if the opponent is going for this strategy. I think it needs playtesting though because in two player games it might just be like having sixteen provinces, since buying these instead of provinces leaves the provinces to the other player, and it will take so long for them to run them out that the player going for Frontier shouldn't have any trouble running out three piles. I think if it doesn't pan out in playtesting it might be worth pursuing at a different cost/value. (edit: maybe like a 5-cost that's worth 2VP with no piles empty, 4VP with one pile empty, and 5VP with two piles empty.)

Anyways I like the expansion, I find it very hard to come up with player interaction that doesn't involve more boring Militia/Witch/Spy variants so this is pretty cool.
 
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Jeremy Volk
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It looks to me like Banner is completely broken. I can set aside a Province from my hand and get the best action on the table next turn? And on top of that, my score goes up every time an attack is played.

Battlefield seems kind of useless. The only time it's even worth buying is if I am able to get more of at least two (preferably three or more) types of Victory cards than anyone else, and if that's the case, I can probably win without Battlefield anyway, unless I just don't go for Provinces at all.

Siege just seems like a terrible idea to me. Seems like the game could too easily devolve into a siege war which would slow the game to a grinding halt.

I also don't like the idea of the Cavalry and General cards, which counter themselves. one player could end up way on top just because he got to play his first and got rid of his opponent's.

I think Frontier costs too much. It requires a lot of planning and strategy to make it worth as much as a Province, but only costs $1 less.

Other than that, I really like the cards for the most part.
 
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