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Subject: Is this good as a first expansion? rss

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Michael Redston
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I know it's a more advanced expansion, but I only have the base game, which is pretty bland and boring (the cards that is, not the gameplay or variety or anything). It seems to me Dark Ages is the most complex expansion, so it should combine well with the base game, which is the simplest one, no? I think it would take Dark Ages to become stale a lot longer than any other single expanion, correct me if I'm wrong.
 
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Ryan McLelland
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I don't have as much experience with Dark Ages as I do the other expansions, but I think it would be okay as a first expansion. My normal suggestion is Prosperity or Seaside, but Dark Ages would be fine too.
 
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Derek Thompson
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kroen wrote:
I know it's a more advanced expansion, but I only have the base game, which is pretty bland and boring (the cards that is, not the gameplay or variety or anything). It seems to me Dark Ages is the most complex expansion, so it should combine well with the base game, which is the simplest one, no? I think it would take Dark Ages to become stale a lot longer than any other single expanion, correct me if I'm wrong.


For me personally, I think Ruins separate from Curses and the possibility of games with both is kind of annoying. The cards that dig around the trash are cool, but Prosperity was more mind-blowing in the way it changed the game. I'd start there, although you might be disappointed with subsequent expansions then. Probably the expansion that's just "wow, these are really interesting cards!" without screwing with the rules much is Hinterlands.
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The Compulsive Completist
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That would be like skipping chapters to get to the meaty stuff at the end of the book. You'd be missing out on a lot of good stuff. dark ages biggest strength is that it seems to tweak the game the most. If you haven't explored the other expansions you need to tweak the least.

That is my opinion. In the end it is a really fun expansion and you would enjoy it. It will be harder to teach to newbies though.
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Jay Reigns
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I would say no. If you're really in love with the concepts and have gamer friends, it may not be bad, but starting with Dark Ages with people who aren't huge gamers seems like a bad idea, as some of the rules are more complicated (Different starting cards, digging through trash, cards not in the supply that can be obtained, etc.) I personally went Vanilla, Intrigue, Cornucopia, Prosperity, Seaside/Hinterlands (bought them at the same time), Dark Ages and it worked out pretty well. Most people will probably tell you to grab Prosperity/Seaside first and expand from there in whichever order excites you. If you want to play 5-6 players (I wouldn't recommend it) or play more attack cards, grad Intrigue.
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Mathue Faulkner
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I think if you have the right group and you're the right type of gamer, then absolutely.

I'm that type of gamer.

Some may argue that it isn't a good idea because it's not as newbie friendly, but it sounds like that isn't a concern for you. In my opinion, it is easily the best expansion and makes the game much more interesting. I personally didn't find Prosperity nearly as revolutionary in terms of game play. It just felt like the same game, only longer and a different pacing. Dark Ages really changes the game, and has completely revitalized my interest in the game.
 
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aldaryn wrote:
kroen wrote:
I know it's a more advanced expansion, but I only have the base game, which is pretty bland and boring (the cards that is, not the gameplay or variety or anything). It seems to me Dark Ages is the most complex expansion, so it should combine well with the base game, which is the simplest one, no? I think it would take Dark Ages to become stale a lot longer than any other single expanion, correct me if I'm wrong.


For me personally, I think Ruins separate from Curses and the possibility of games with both is kind of annoying. The cards that dig around the trash are cool, but Prosperity was more mind-blowing in the way it changed the game. I'd start there, although you might be disappointed with subsequent expansions then. Probably the expansion that's just "wow, these are really interesting cards!" without screwing with the rules much is Hinterlands.
I'd go so far to say that just Curses without any defenses vs. them (e.g. Moat, Chapel, Cellar) can be annoying for newbies. The game drags on twice as long as your typical Dom game, and newbies get the impression that such a long game is the norm than the exception.

Of course, that's not to say base game is bad either... just pick a preset or random set that's more newbie friendly. You can always do the same for DA.... no Curses, no Ruin giving cards for your first game or 3.


As far as suggesting Prosp. as a first exp... I'm more concerned that adding P/C that early will skew their perceptions and values of the Kingdom cards and the game itself, but I suppose that's the tradeoff with Prosp.
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Jacob Lee
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I don't think it should be the first expansion to pick up. Dark Ages has so many cards related to trashing that there's not as much variety as one would expect with 35 new cards. This is why I would say Intrigue and Prosperity should be your first expansions.
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Michael Redston
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Let me elaborate: First, I asked whether it should be my first expansion, I didn't say it would also be my last. Second, there's no "game group", just me and my brother.

From reviews and looking at cards, I kind of like all the big expansions equally. The reason I'm biased toward Dark Ages is because it seems it has the most variety (it has the most kingdom cards out of all expansions, doesn't it?)
 
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The Compulsive Completist
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There is a difference between "quantity" and "variety". And if this isn't your last expansion than it definately shouldn't be your next.
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Michael Hyer
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No, I would get seaside or prosperity, although intrigue is great to although you do get a lot of cards you already have. I wouldn't buy this one until you have at least 3 other expansions.
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Lab Gnome
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A friend of mine went intrigue then dark ages (I have them all, just FYI) and he rather enjoyed it a lot.

I don't think you can go wrong for the most part. Avoid Alchemy since it is generally the most disliked.

Me personally, I found that prosperity does change things a bit but it is mostly just that it means longer games with bigger engines.

Anyway, if, let's say, my entire collection disappeared and I wanted to start anew slowly. My buying order assuming I had the base:

1. Dark Ages
2. Hinterlands
3. Prosperity
4. Promo: Black Market
5. Cornucopia
6. Intrigue
7. Sea Side
8. Promo: Governor
8. Alchemy
9. All other promos: Walled Village, Stash, Envoy
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Lab Gnome
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kroen wrote:
Let me elaborate: First, I asked whether it should be my first expansion, I didn't say it would also be my last. Second, there's no "game group", just me and my brother.

From reviews and looking at cards, I kind of like all the big expansions equally. The reason I'm biased toward Dark Ages is because it seems it has the most variety (it has the most kingdom cards out of all expansions, doesn't it?)


Yes, it does. So, if you want a lot of bang Dark Ages would be great for that. It is less user friendly (mostly in strategizing, the cards are pretty straight forward), but it sounds like you and your brother would not have an issue with that.
 
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Chuck Smith
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I would also recommend it as I think it's the best expansion out there! I don't really think it's that much more complex than Prosperity, for example.
 
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Michael Redston
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Tnx for the replies, I'll probably get it.
 
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Rick Teverbaugh
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Dark Ages is a great expansion but I would NEVER suggest it as a first expansion. In fact, I would say at least two expansions and 12 months of playing should come before Dark Ages. Dark Ages breaks a lot of rules in playing Dominion ad it is harder to grasp those changes if not completely comfortable with how the game works.
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Mathue Faulkner
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rickert wrote:
Dark Ages is a great expansion but I would NEVER suggest it as a first expansion. In fact, I would say at least two expansions and 12 months of playing should come before Dark Ages. Dark Ages breaks a lot of rules in playing Dominion ad it is harder to grasp those changes if not completely comfortable with how the game works.

I don't understand this reasoning (not trying to single you out as I know others feel the same). For gamers that generally play much more complex games, Dark Ages really isn't that big of a step at all. It's definitely on par with games like Glory to Rome or Race for the Galaxy in terms of complexity....which means that it really isn't non-gamer friendly, but a couple of gamers shouldn't really have an issue with it especially if they've played the base game.

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The Compulsive Completist
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Dark Ages changes Dominion more than any other expansion. I don't think you have enough Dominion to change yet.

Why are you so against getting Seaside or Hinterlands or Prosperity? Those are more Dominion. Dark Ages is different Dominion.

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Rick Teverbaugh
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mfaulk80 wrote:
rickert wrote:
Dark Ages is a great expansion but I would NEVER suggest it as a first expansion. In fact, I would say at least two expansions and 12 months of playing should come before Dark Ages. Dark Ages breaks a lot of rules in playing Dominion ad it is harder to grasp those changes if not completely comfortable with how the game works.

I don't understand this reasoning (not trying to single you out as I know others feel the same). For gamers that generally play much more complex games, Dark Ages really isn't that big of a step at all. It's definitely on par with games like Glory to Rome or Race for the Galaxy in terms of complexity....which means that it really isn't non-gamer friendly, but a couple of gamers shouldn't really have an issue with it especially if they've played the base game.



Were Dark Ages a standlone game on its own and not an expansion for Dominion, I would feel as you stated. But that's clearly not the case. In my view, Dark Ages takes the existing Dominion landscape and twists it in all sorts of really fun ways. But I also believe that you need to really know those untwisted ways to appreciate and easily comprehend what Dark Ages does. I think the best Dominion experience is to buy the expansions as they were released so that it always my best suggestion. But for those who want to skip around, I would avoid Dark Ages and Prosperity until a person already has at least two of the other expansions. I absolutely refused to have people Dark Ages at GenCon if they had never played Dominion, but also if they had only played Dominion a handful of times.
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Jason Carlough
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Don't let people scare you away from Dark Ages, unless you are uncomfortable with complexity.

I have owned the base set for a long while and have played it on it's own a fair bit (for someone who doesn't play online and plays lots of other games as well). I was always reluctant to add more expansions since it requires more boxes on the shelf or time invested in a storage solution and more junk (tokens and mats, etc). With that in my mind I was pretty sick of Dominion.

I finally got Dark Ages and I am really happy with it. We played it a few times so far, on it's own and in combination with Intrigue (my friend owns Intrigue). I could not be happier with this purchase. I will admit it could be a little much for non gamers, but if you are comfortable with other complex card games (Glory to Rome, Race for the Galaxy) than get Dark Ages right away. It really ups the ante for Dominion and makes it a much more interesting game in my opinion.

I'm also going to go get Intrique though as after playing it a few times now, it seems to add a lot of interesting stuff to the game. If I were to start over I would probably just by Intrigue and Dark Ages, at least for the time being.
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Michael Redston
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Hockey Mask wrote:
Dark Ages changes Dominion more than any other expansion. I don't think you have enough Dominion to change yet.

Why are you so against getting Seaside or Hinterlands or Prosperity? Those are more Dominion. Dark Ages is different Dominion.


Against them? quite the contrary. They seem awesome, and I plan to get them eventually. My reasoning for preferring DA before the others I have already stated in this thread.
 
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The Compulsive Completist
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I have no problem with you getting whichever expansion you want. They are all great in their own way. The differences between the expansions is enough to have have their own supporters but certainly not to the point of arguing about it.

That said, I am a bit put off that you started a thread asking advice and the community, for the most part, tried to steer you in a certain direction and you seemed to just ignore it.
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Michael Redston
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As I've already said, I posted this thread with a bit of a bias toward DA and I have said why. And besides, enough people agreed that it was a good first expansion (and many of the others who didn't said it's good for gamers and such, which both me and my brother are).
 
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