Witch in 2018

This post was originally written by Titandrake and edited in collaboration with the Dominion Strategy blog team.

WitchDigital

“Witch is a defining card in Dominion. … Curses are the strongest attack in the game, and Witch is as straightforward a Cursing attack as it gets. “

theory, “The Five Best $5 Attacks”, April 2011

“No matter what kind of deck you’re playing, you will benefit from buying a Witch and playing it as often as possible.”

theory, “Guide to the Dominion Base Game”, June 2011

“Witch is a guaranteed Curser with no drawback and definitely one of the strongest cards in the game.”

Qvist Dominion Card List, January 2012

“It’s good.

Buy it.

If you don’t, you better have a good reason, and I mean a REALLY good reason.”

Titandrake, “Witch”, June 2013

It’s been 10 years since Dominion came out, cards have shifted up and down in relative power level, but through it all is one constant:

Witch is still a good card.

You should still buy it.

If you don’t, you should still have a good reason, and I mean a REALLY good reason.

“But there’s a way to trash Curses!”

No, every Curse they trash is a Copper or Estate they didn’t get to trash.

“But the trasher competes at the $5 price point!”

You may want to buy the trasher first, but if you do, you should probably still buy the Witch later.

“But Mountebank is in the kingdom!”

Actually, after you play Mountebanks a few times, your opponents can have enough Curses to block Mountebank fairly often. In this scenario, Witch can turn into the better Curser. The +2 Cards can also be a big deal compared to the +$2 Mountebank gives you.

“But Moat is in the kingdom!”

Having a Witch still threatens handing out Curses. They only have to fail to have Moat once to get punished for it. And if they buy a lot of Moats, then you’ve hurt them in a different way: they spent a bunch of buys on Moats.

“But Lighthouse is in the kingdom!”

Okay. The Moat principle still applies – they only have to miss it once to get hurt. However, Lighthouse is genuinely different. As a non-terminal, it’s more okay to have several Lighthouses, and in some games (like Minion games) it’s even beneficial. Additionally, for Moat to block Witch, it has to be drawn in the opening hand. For Lighthouse to block Witch, it needs to be drawn any time in the previous turn, a much looser condition. A strong enough engine can block all attacks with just 2 Lighthouses.

So sometimes, they do have enough Lighthouses to make buying Witch redundant. But if you notice they’ve gotten complacent and are starting to miss Lighthouse turns, maybe you should reconsider that Witch…

“But Ambassador or Masquerade is in the kingdom!”

These are the most regular counters to Witch. Witch is great because giving away Curses is great. It sucks when they give the Curse back, especially while also thinning their own deck.

“But I’m drawing my deck, and I have a trasher, and I’m out of things I want to trash with it! I’ll just trash the Curse if I get Witched!”

Sure, this is true for now. It’s easy for this to stop being true, as you add payload or Victory cards to your deck. Much like the Moat argument, if they’re playing Witch every turn, you only have to fail to draw your trasher once to fall behind on having a thin deck. Once you fall behind the first time, it’s more likely you fall behind the next, and soon your thin deck can have 3 Curses in it. It’s a classic recipe for beating people who are overconfident in their deck’s reliability, and with Witch in the kingdom, you need to be extra careful not to fall behind in the deck size battle.

A lot of new players don’t like Witch, because it slows down the game. Most people’s idea of fun is playing a bunch of cards and producing a bunch of money. Witch gets in the way of that. But I like Witch. When I give out Curses, I think to myself “yes”. When I get Curses, I think to myself “no”. Even if you don’t like it, you have to respect it.

Sometimes, you can skip Witch, and you get to be a Hero. Maybe even a Champion. Just be careful out there. Curses make the world a scary place.

Advertisements
Posted in Articles, Dominion, General Strategy, Individual Card Analysis, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Dominion: Renaissance – Release and Card Spoilers

The latest Dominion expansion, Dominion: Renaissance, officially released online today, and will be available in retail stores imminently. This also means that the full text of all cards has been revealed, as well as the game manual, which can be accessed here.

Below are the newly revealed cards. The images are taken from the online client which matches the wording but not necessarily the exact layout of the printed cards; for the newest, sharpest images, check the Dominion Strategy Wiki.

Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Coffers

This article was written by Polk5440 and briefly reviewed by the rest of the Dominion Strategy blog team. Stay tuned for Renaissance spoilers in the next few days, as the new expansion is likely to be available in stores and online as soon as Monday.

Coffers (née Coin Tokens) have been around since Guilds was first released in 2013. With the upcoming release of Renaissance, which once again utilizes Coffers, now is a good time to review some of what we know about how and when to use Coffers.

Save Coffers to Hit Key Price Points

One Coffers is equivalent to $1 which can be used on any turn. Coffers can be saved for later; coins can’t. This added ability makes +1 Coffers better than +$1.

For example, if you have $4 and buy a Silver, you waste $1. With Coffers, you don’t waste the extra money and save it for hitting key price points later. Getting a hand of two Coppers, one Potion, and two Estates is a complete waste if you are looking to buy a Familiar. Avoid this bad luck by using a well-saved Coffers.

Because of the added ability to save Coffers, cards that give +1 Coffers are generally weaker in their other abilities than cards that give +$1. Additionally, for most of the game, no more than one or two Coffers is usually needed to be kept on the mat to hit key price price points. Therefore, while there is a huge benefit to acquiring that first card that gives Coffers, the marginal benefit of a second or third card that give Coffers to your deck is much lower.

Spend Coffers Early

Just because Coffers can be saved for the future does not mean they should. Spending Coffers earlier leads to a compounding effect. Better cards now help you get more, even better cards sooner.

A good rule of thumb is that Coffers acquired early in the game should be spent as soon as possible to buy better cards. For example, while Baker starts you off with just one Coffers, if your opening draw is $3/$4, that one Coffers can get you a key $5 card in your deck an entire shuffle earlier than otherwise. Saving that one Coffers for later has a very high opportunity cost of not getting that better card now.

Beyond a Coffers, or maybe two, there really isn’t a lot of reason to keep more Coffers around in the early to mid game for smoothing out your buys. The extra Coffers should probably be spent on better stuff for your deck.

Hoard Coffers Late

Should you ever hang onto more than a couple of Coffers?  Yes. Late in the game, keeping a handful of Coffers can be used for hitting key price when your deck starts to sputter from gaining lots of green cards and is unable to consistently produce the same amount of money per turn. For example, you might want to consistently hit $8 for Province. With three Coffers stored, a sequence of turns that yields $8, $7, and $6 scores three Provinces, but no Coffers and a sequence of $8, $7, and $6 only scores one Province and two Duchies.

Additionally you can hoard Coffers late to threaten bigger buys. If you have a lot of Coffers, say 8 or more, sitting on the mat, and your deck can generate extra buys (or gains that allow using Coffers, like via Butcher), you are threatening to pick up multiple Provinces or other big Victory cards at your convenience. This can give you a lot of control in the endgame.

How many Coffers you need and how you use them in the endgame depends on how long the greening phase will be drawn out.

Coffers are a unique resource in Dominion. Hoard them late, spend them early, and save them to hit key price points. With the upcoming release of Renaissance, it will be fun to see all the interactions and strategies the new Coffers cards will bring.

Posted in Articles, General Strategy, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: Burning Skull

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship.  Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match.

Burning Skull will be playing jfrisch Friday at 1900 UTC (3 o’clock Friday afternoon Eastern Time); you can watch the live-stream of the match at dominion.games, or at .

This is Burning Skull’s pregame interview.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

Burning Skull:  Well, hi. Name’s Igor, I’m 30, live in St. Petersburg, Russia and I write code for a living.

How did you start playing Dominion?

Burning Skull:  Picked up a physical copy about six years ago, played a first game on Friday at work, never stopped playing before Sunday night. Was my first experience with board games btw (well, barring some Monopoly in the childhood, and one time Munchkin trauma).

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

Burning Skull:  Won’t be a surprise I guess, but Mercury was the toughest.

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

Burning Skull:  My favourite is probably City Quarter, It’s just cool to see how it draws a lot of cards. Also the art on it is nice, if you look closely you can see Donald X. in one of the windows. I also like Miser, it’s kinda niche, but sometimes does a great job. Black Market is love forever as well.

Really don’t like Battlefield – it sometimes makes dumpster strategies win, and why would you want to play a dumpster strategy. Not a huge fan of Tournament – it just leads to frustrations too often.

What cards do you think are the most overrated/underrated?

Burning Skull:  Some of the weaker cards are slightly underrated: Royal Seal is not really a bad card, it’s just the competition at this price point is usually quite high. Also, Transmute is not unplayable at all: you can go for it in like one of 50 games you see it in.

Most overrated cards are still Province and Gold.

What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

Burning Skull:  I’ve been translating the cards to Russian, and that’s a blast, really liked them a lot! Think I like it better than Nocturne so far.

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

Burning Skull:  Hmm, there was this one relatively recent vs Mic, where I was about to win a game by Ambassadoring him a Province, but there were Changelings on the board, the fact we both missed, and yeah, that was an agonizing revelation. I lost.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

Burning Skull:  I tend to work a lot, also play quite a few other games. Love reading, love going somewhere to see stuff, just a regular guy stuff. I’m a metalhead of sorts, so summer is for the festivals

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

Burning Skull:  Well, fall in love with the game most of all. I started playing competitive to some extent after watching Wandering Winder videos. So yeah, watching good players thought process helps a lot. Taking a break after a game and thinking why it went that way and not the other also won’t hurt.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: jfrisch

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship.  Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match.

jfrisch will be playing Burning Skull on Friday at 1900 UTC (3’clock in the afternoon Eastern time); you can watch the live-stream of the match at dominion.games, or at .

This is jfrisch’s pregame interview.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

jfrisch:  Hi, I am 26 years old. I’m a math Ph.D student in California. I also grew up in California.

How did you start playing Dominion?

jfrisch:  I learned Dominion at a summer program I went to about 8 years ago but I started playing in earnest in late 2011 thanks to some combination of real life friends, Dominion Strategy, and Isotropic.

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

jfrisch:  I’ve had two really tough matches so far. My match for the quarterfinals spot against singletee went to the seventh game and it was a close game!

However for me the very hardest match was probably against Huevos Locos in round 3, they thoroughly crushed me in last years tournament so I went in really nervous and it was also a really close match. It was also decided on the 7th game.

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

jfrisch:  I’m a big fan of (most) cards that warp the game but increase the complexity in interesting ways.

My favorite Dominion card right now is Horn of Plenty. Gainers in general add lots of interesting tactics and thought into the game and Horn of Plenty in particular is quite strong but requires a good amount of finesse to build around properly. I also really like Bridge Troll which helps you gain more cards but, again, is not simply spammable and procession which leads to some excellent puzzles and incredibly precise game play. In terms of things that are not technically cards Windfall is probably my favorite event. It’s often worth warping your deck around but to do so requires careful planning.

My least favorite cards are cards which regularly dominate with limited support while dramatically increasing the luck in the game. Cultist and Rebuild both actively destroy otherwise fun kingdoms and they’re going on my ban list as soon as it exists. I’m also personally disinclined towards Possession. I don’t like the degeneracy it seems to frequently encourage (though I understand why many disagree).

What cards do you think are the most overrated/underrated?

jfrisch:  Bishop is trash. Opening with it is suicidal in most circumstances and merely disastrous in the others. If you’re both going for the engine it gives them a crucial tempo advantage. It can sometimes be a desperate source of alt-VP to enable engines (but, even then, unless they’re going Big money, you’re usually better off skipping it). The trashing it gives to your opponent is unforgivable and, for the vast majority of games, you never want it.

Gold is underrated. Obviously it’s crucial in big money games but, beyond that, you can often get it on the cheap (Courtier/Treasure Maps/Windfall/Soothsayer/Tunnel/Market Square etc). It’s actually uncommon for gold to make a deck worse. (Though there are certainly some cases where it does). Unlike silver it’s generally a good card!

What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

jfrisch:  Mountain Village seemed hilarious, Experiment delightful and Sculptor intriguing. I’m delighted that Donald is trying to push towards strategically complex, but simple to read, cards.

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

jfrisch:  I remember a game which ended (on piles) in about 7 turns which just felt absurdly fast. I’m not very good at remembering specific games in general though.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

jfrisch:  I’m a math grad student so I do a lot of math! Other than that I really enjoy hiking, traveling (often for school), and especially trying to find hidden restaurant gems (which is what I might be principally known for in my friend group).

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

jfrisch:  For new players specifically, you need at least 300 games (often more) before you’re going to be good (55+). It’s not just that there are lots of cards (and, honestly, you usually need to play with a given card at least 5 times before you understand its nuances) but there are so many ideas, tactics, and strategies that until you’ve played a lot of games you won’t be able to understand. Play these games trying to understand what your opponents are doing and try to make sure your deck is at least as good as big money plus one or two cards.

Don’t worry if you mess up. I don’t think there’s a player around who won’t occasionally pick a strategy that is worse than BMU (pure big money with no kingdom cards).

As in most competitive strategic games you’ll learn way more playing stronger players. Sometimes you’ll win but usually you’ll lose. If you can, ask them questions if you lose, usually they’ll have ideas of what mistakes you made which is the sort of precise tactical or strategic info and reasoning that is really hard to distill into articles. Also as in most strategic games when you’re tired or on tilt you will play much worse. Stop it when you’re no longer having fun.

In terms of specific strategic advice while strategy and deck planning obviously are the lions share of Dominion a close second is endgame play. Endgame play is sometimes simply looking for wins in 1 turn.  More often endgame play relies on paying deep attention to what your opponent could buy next round, determining how empty the piles are, figuring out roughly when the game will end, and planning tactics around it. Moving from weak to intermediate endgame skill is enough to increase your play by at least 5 levels.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: JoMa

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship.  Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match.

JoMa will be playing markus Friday, October 26 at 600pm UTC (2 o’clock PM Eastern time Friday afternoon); you can watch the live-stream of the match at twitch.tv/dominionstreams.

This is JoMa’s pregame interview.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

JoMa:  I am 31 years old, living in the north of Germany, trying to meet all the expectations of a modern father that cares about family, job and the housekeeping.

In the mornings, I work as researcher in the field of energy informatics, contributing a tiny bit to carry the German energy system transformation forward.

In the afternoons, I work as a father, trying to teach my three-year-old son some life lessons, while he teaches me patience.

How did you start playing Dominion?

JoMa:  During my study time, a friend brought the card game one evening, as we were looking for a good 2-player game. I immediately fell in love with it. We spent hours trying to figure out the cards of the base set and analyzing why certain decks succeeded and others didn’t.

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

JoMa:  The closest match was definitely the 3rd round match against train, where I was down 1-3 and somehow managed to make it to game 7 and then luckily had a first player advantage. My best opponent was Jan in the round of 16, but I simply had loads of luck during the match.

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

JoMa:  I somehow like to play raider, especially when both players have strong decks. Making your opponent discard one of the great cards you have played in your turn can be really powerful. However, I really like to play with certain events or landmarks, like Ritual, Mountain Pass, Fountain, Tomb or Wall.

I don’t really like swindler, but I guess I am not alone with that. The card that I play worst with is ambassador. I find it really hard to find the right balance between building your deck and junking your opponent.

What cards do you think are the most overrated/underrated?

JoMa:  Most overrated: Black market. Of course it can be a great card sometimes, but sometimes there is everything you need in front of you already.

Most underrated: I guess it’s develop. Of course it’s not a super great trasher, but during mid game it can be really powerful, especially in a kingdom with good action cards for all kind of different costs (especially good $2 cards).

What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

JoMa:  Unfortunately I haven’t had the time to test the cards during the preview weeks (I was busy with the championship matches).

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

JoMa:  Long ago, I played a 3-player match with Chapel, Pirate Ship, Saboteur and King’s Court. One other player and me, we were going for Pirate Ships, while the other one built up for a whole lot of Saboteur attacks. When all the Pirate Ships got trashed, we all ended up with literally no economy at all. While one player continuously Kinged the Saboteur, the other one was going for Copper + Estates. Out of frustration I trashed my remaining deck. With only a Chapel in hand I then slowly built a 5-card deck and managed to grab a Colony just at the last turn before the 3-pile end, which gave me the win.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

JoMa:  Usually I spend my time with the job or my family. Once a week, I really enjoy playing table tennis in a sports club. Additionally, every now and then, I meet with some friends to play some groovy samba rhythms on different types of drums, which is really fun.

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

JoMa:  Take your time. It has really improved my game when I started to slow down and think a bit more, especially at the start of the game.

Other than that I don’t really feel to be in the right position to give advice about Dominion, I rather feel like I am still learning, how this game works.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: markus

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship.  Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match.

markus will be playing JoMa Friday, October 26 at 600pm UTC (2 o’clock PM Eastern time Friday afternoon); you can watch the live-stream of the match at twitch.tv/dominionstreams.

This is markus’s pregame interview.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

markus:  I’m 33 years old and from Austria. I have a Math and Econ background and I’ve been living in Germany for a couple of years now.

How did you start playing Dominion?

markus:  I started playing it when it won the Spiel des Jahres, so I’ve been there all along. I played on Isotropic, but only became more involved when I joined the Dominion League for Season 11 three years ago.

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

markus:  The last one in terms of not getting eliminated, the first one in terms of keeping my focus.

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

markus:  In general, I like diversity and having all those expansions means that you don’t have to play too often with any card. I like Donate, because it really forces (and rewards) you to have a good plan before the start of the game.

I hate how Star Chart plays out with the new shuffle rule: you should take into account what say the last 2 cards of the old shuffle are that you are about to draw – do I need a Village or a Smithy using Star Chart? And it’s relatively easy to figure out what those cards are (in contrast to say Wishing Well), because youíre looking at your discard pile, hand, play area, set-aside cards and just need to add them up. Maybe also look at supply and trash, if you’re unsure what you’ve gained. It’s annoying to waste time figuring out those cards or waiting for your opponent to do so, when there is a seemingly simple fix (being allowed to see the remaining cards of the deck when shuffling).

But that’s just something that comes up online. In real life – and also with other games – my gaming groups tend to allow looking at everything that could be memorized, because we want to see who finds the best strategy and not who has the best memory. There, I should maybe pick Swindler as least favourite if I wanted to reduce my chances of losing games due to bad luck. But I will actually pick Black Market: what I appreciate in Dominion is the supply that is the same to everyone but differs from game to game. Your goal is to find the best strategy given the supply. Black Market removes that to some extent. Since the second edition and with 60 cards in it online, the Black Market deck has become strong enough that you rarely want to skip that. It’s still high skill because you need to pick the right cards at the right time. But you can’t plan on using positive interactions between cards in the supply so much anymore. I wouldn’t put it on my blacklist, but I would like to reduce the share of games with it a bit and I should put it on my blacklist every other day.

What cards do you think are the most overrated/underrated?

markus:  Overrated is Sauna/Avanto. The nice thing is that it provides a lot that you want (trashing, +Actions, drawing), but it’s not very fast, if your opponent doesn’t help you to uncover Avanto. Before you open Sauna/Silver, check whether there’s better ways to trash, get +Actions, and draw!

Underrated is Summon. Yes, you typically can only gain a $4 cost that way, but playing it without having to draw it or spending an Action the next turn is very strong. This often makes up for it being a weaker card later on in the deck compared to the $5 cost that you could have bought instead.

What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

markus:  First, I always like having a new expansion as it adds to diversity and gives you something new to think about. For sure, I wouldn’t play as much Dominion anymore, if Guilds had been the last expansion.

Second, I like Villagers. They seem like a nice way to rescue awful shuffles and weíve all had all the Villages and then all the terminal draw colliding.

Third, I also like having new landscapes, especially when they make you re-evaluate the rest of the board or do unusual stuff like Innovation. (Not so much when they waste your time when shuffling.)

Therefore, I’m looking forward very much to the full release of Renaissance!

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

markus:  I remember one of the games in the Monoset tournament against Dan Brooks that had Knights and Rogue (I believe). It went on for a long time and Dan was slowly winning it by better plays.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

markus:  I like playing board games in general. Usually, I play a lot of different ones and many not very often. Dominion is the exception that proves the rule and probably because every board is different.

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

markus:  Try to get someone to comment on your play (join the Dominion Discord!).

In terms of strategic advice, watch out for three-pile endings (finding them, when you can win; not opening them up for your opponent, when it’s not a necessary gamble; setting them up for a future turn).

In the early and mid-game try to play the best strategy that is available (maybe inspired by your opponent). I think you can easily get to level 60 ignoring what your opponent does in the early turns and as much fun it is to react to what your opponent does.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: Mic Qsenoch

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship.  Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match.

Mic Qsenoch will be playing vsiewnar Wednesday October 24 at 1000pm UTC (6 o’clock PM Eastern time Wednesday evening); you can watch the live-stream of the match at twitch.tv/dominionstreams.

This is the pregame interview with Mic Qsenoch.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

Mic Qsenoch: I am 29, I am from the big middle part of the USA, and I surf the internet a lot.

How did you start playing Dominion?

MQ: Like anybody else, one leg at a time.

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

MQ: DG went to game 7, 50/50 chance on one of my last action plays to find a win, that’s pretty close!

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

MQ: Favorite: Butcher, because it’s the strongest card in Dominion. Least favorite: do-nothing cantrips like Harbinger and Pearl Diver, they don’t do much.

What cards do you think are the most overrated?  What cards do you think are the most underrated?

MQ: Just looking at some of these Qvist lists because I don’t really know what people rate things: Gear looks too high, probably because Gear BM was a meme for a while.  Butcher is too low because it’s not #1 on the list. From games I play, people seem to open Shepherd all the time and I’m not feeling it.

What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

MQ: A direct quote from myself at a time when I could answer this question: “this expansion is sweet.”

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

MQ: I still wake up from nightmares reliving the league championship where I needed to 6-0 Stef to win the season and I lost the sixth game playing something basic vs. something with King’s Court.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

MQ: Wisely.

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

MQ: During/after every game, try to identify a handful of mistakes that you or your opponent made, then stop doing them. Never try to decide which player played “better”. Drink plenty of water and eat lots of vegetables.

Finally, who do you think is going to win the Championship?

MQ: Good question!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: vsiewnar

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship. Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match.

vsiewnar will be playing Mic Qsenoch Wednesday October 24 at 1000pm UTC (6 o’clock PM Eastern time Wednesday evening); you can watch the live-stream of the match at twitch.tv/dominionstreams.

This is the pregame interview with vsiewnar.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

vsiewnar: I’m 28 and originally from Trinidad but currently live in Canada formally studying Applied Mathematics here. Thanks to ShuffleIT for organising!

How did you start playing Dominion?

vsiewnar: I started playing in person through one of my friends (trinadianese online) who introduced me to the game. It took some convincing to play the first game since I don’t typically like board games!

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

vsiewnar: I’d say it was against ehunt in Round 2. We got pushed to game 7 and I had to come from behind to win the decider.

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

vsiewnar: My favourite card changes from time to time. For now, I’ll go with Apothecary and Artificer. Sometimes, there is elegance with Apothecary such as setting it up to draw all 4 revealed cards or taking advantage of the information it gives. Artificer’s gaining ability is attractive mostly because it topdecks the card and is not mandatory.

Sentry often irritates me because I often expect too much from it. Perhaps I should lower my expectations. Governor also forces me to think a lot and is often centralising.

What cards do you think are the most overrated?  What cards do you think are the most underrated?

vsiewnar: I think Watchtower and Tracker are underrated. The topdeck ability is good and they both sometimes provide significant additional support. I have also seen a few people sleep on Groundskeeper though that may have changed by now.

I’m not sure what cards are overrated. Personally, I think I overrate Villa and Legionary. Villa changes the game a bit but not as much as I thought and Legionary’s attack has counters and checks as do the other attacks.

What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

vsiewnar: I haven’t cast much thought into Dominion: Renaissance aside from quickly reading the posted previews. I’ll look more into it when it become available online and I’ll probably keep calling them coin tokens 😛

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

vsiewnar: The most memorable is when I lost 5.5 to 0.5 to werothegreat in the League.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

vsiewnar: I should be using this time for my schoolwork!

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

vsiewnar: There are different pieces of advice for different levels of players. Some should play more to get more familiar with certain cards and ideas. Endgame is always a big area to improve. There is also the mental aspect of staying positive despite losing or going through some bad luck and keeping alert after 2 or 3 hours.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2018 Dominion Online Championship Quarterfinal Interview: derg17

254 players participated in the 2018 Dominion Online Championship.  Only 8 players are left, and we will posting interviews with each player this week before their match. 

Derg17 will be playing limetime Wednesday October 24 at 100am UTC (9 o’clock PM Eastern time Tuesday night); you can watch the live-stream of the match at twitch.tv/dominionstream.

This is derg17’s pregame interview.

Tell us a little about yourself. How old are you, where are you from, what do you do?

derg17: I can’t believe I’m here in the quarter finals! With so many excellent Dominion players who are worthy to be in this spot I’m very honored and lucky to be here. But to answer the question: I’m 33 years old and from central Illinois. I work with a Christian college ministry as a mentor and spiritual resource to students.

How did you start playing Dominion?

derg17: I was introduced to Dominion by some co-workers back in the summer of 2012. My love really took off when I found the online version. That was right when the first official online version was being launched.

What do you think was your toughest match in the tournament so far?

derg17: The match against Sicomatic. He is a very good player (obviously!). I knew I was the underdog going in and I definitely got at least a few big breaks to pull out the tight victory.

What are your favourite and least-favourite Dominion cards, and why?

derg17: Least favorite: Swindler – I see a fun board but then I see that Swindler is there which means my finely built deck will be destroyed. Ghost Ship – it just really is so painful to be forced to see those two cards again. Stables – especially with trashing! Nothing is quite so painful as a handful of stables and no treasure.

Most favorite: Ambassador – something about the ability to burry your opponent is fun to me. Scrying Pool – drawing all those actions! Menagerie – it’s been said before, nothing feels as good as an activated menagerie. Artificer – gain and play is fun and Artificer makes gain and play pretty easy.

What cards do you think are the most overrated?  What cards do you think are the most underrated?

derg17: Overrated: I think some duration cards like Ghost Town are overrated. Only being able to play them every other turn really hurts their value in my mind. I would often rather have regular village. I’m suspicious Den of sin falls into this category. I feel like I see people try to do too much with Vassal. Also, Taxman.

Underrated: Conquest. I’m probably totally wrong, but I’m convinced on many boards Conquest big money will beat lots of other stuff. I see people under value Advisor: You can’t just let your opponent get all of those guys. Also, I have a feeling that we miss Miser on slow boards. If a long game is necessary I bet we forget Miser becomes really good.

 What are your initial impressions of Renaissance, the newest Dominion expansion?

derg17: Mountain Village seems great. I expect Priest to be a blast when you can get it rolling, but I think that will be rare. Scholar is probably the one that seems the most fun of the ones I’ve seen. Discarding your hand is what draw to X always wanted!

What was the most memorable Dominion match you’ve ever played?

derg17: I always think of this match against vsiewnar back in season 19 of the league. It started with a Black Market/Museum game. That first game alone lasted almost 2 hours.

How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t playing Dominion?

derg17: I enjoy running, biking, reading, talking theology and philosophy, and hanging out with the wife. This past year I started working towards a Master of Divinity part time. That has dramatically cut back my Dominion time and taken all my non-Dominion time.

What advice do you have for Dominion players looking to get better?

derg17: Context makes all the difference in Dominion.  So I think there’s no substitute to watching the best players play and make all their decisions in context. My preferred medium for this is Youtube.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment