In this article series I will explore the so called Alt-VP or Alternate Victory Point cards. I will analyze simple decks that use Alt-VP as their win condition and how well they fare against baseline strategies. I will also try to find (near) optimal strategies for the mirror match.
Week 5 : Feodum
Most of the Alt-VP cards are worth going for if you can get them up to 4 VP. This means you’re going to need at least 12 Silver in your deck which is a lot of junk, especially for an engine. It’s perfect for a Slog with some kind of Silver gainer (Jack of All Trades or Amulet). Today we’re going to use the ultimate enabler, Masterpiece. Here are the buy rules for the Masterpiece/Feodum bot (evaluated from top to bottom for each buy):
- buy Feodum when you have 21 or more Silver
- buy Province when you have 21 or more Silver
- buy Duchy when you have 21 or more Silver
- buy Estate when you have 21 or more Silver
- buy Masterpiece with $5 or more
- buy Silver
Here’s how it fares vs a Smithy Big Money strategy (which buys 1 Smithy, Treasures and Provinces)
It’s a hopeless battle for the poor Smithy. It spends $8 to get 6VP while the Feodum player only needs to spend $4 to get 7VP. Masterpiece/Feodum wins very close to 100% of games. This strategy is so strong that it even beats strong engines. Its only rivals are probably mega turn engines with Goons. As an example let’s let it fight against a Fishing Village/Wharf mega turn engine:
Feodum wins a whopping 80% of matches vs the engine.
When a strategy is so dominant the game often turns into a mirror match. It’s pretty obvious that winning the Feodum split is going to be important. Here are the buy rules for the best mirror bot:
- buy Feodum when there are 8 or less Silver in the supply
- Masterpiece with $5 or more (if there are still Silver left in the supply)
- buy Province if you already have Feodum
- buy Duchy if you already have Feodum
- buy Estate if you already have Feodum
- buy Silver
The mirror bot wins 60% of games versus the original bot. It surprised me that winning the Feodum split gives only a small advantage, but getting lots of Silver first will allow easier access to Province which are going to be worth as much VP as Feodum in a mirror match (40 Silver split in 2 means 6VP Feodum).
This combo is going to dominate on the majority of boards, but losing the Feodum split in the mirror is not the end of the world.
I will be taking requests for future articles, so feel free to send me a message (Geronimoo on the forum).
(these bots have been incorporated in the latest version of the simulator)