Another week, another gamer’s challenge completed. This weeks challenge was to play an old game with a new strategy, and my group seemed to enjoy busting out an oldie but a goody. Remember, my crew is so use to playing brand new games for reviews that we hardly ever get to go back and revisit our favorites, so doing so is quite a treat.
So what did we pull out? Dominion. Several of us our suckers for the game, and it’s so infrequent we actually get to play it. This is also a game that I definitely have a strategy for, so it was easy to declare what my strategy normally is and then sit that strategy to the side. Normally in Dominion, I am a cycle-er. I cycle through my deck as much as possible, so I can get all of my money into my hand on each turn. Then “Bam!” I buy a province, or two, when possible. It’s a pretty good strategy, and the set of randomized cards we had would have worked really great for it, but alas, I had to whip up a new strategy.
The set of cards we played with was a combination of Dominion (base set), Dominion: Intrigue, and Dominion: Seaside. The deck was comprised of a ton of cards that gave you +1 or +2 cards, and a lot of cards gave you +1 actions, so you could just keep cycling…. wait… no… must put that idea aside, I can’t play that strategy! So what else was there? Well, “Wharf” was on the table, which gave me +2 cards and +1 buy. “Lighthouses” were also part of the mix, which protected me from the attack cards and gave me +1 money on two rounds. I decided that was my plan of attack. I would horde lots of gold, Wharfs, and Lighthouses with the plan of simply buying out the province pile faster than my opponents. I had seen it work on the Dominion app before, so I figured I would give it a shot. I coupled that with some “Ambassadors” that let me discard cards and give my opponents what I discarded in an attempt to get the copper and estates out of my deck and weight down my opponents deck with them instead.
So how did this work? Not so well. There was four of us playing and I came in third, and only by a point. My deck was just too darn slow. I had a tough time getting gold initially to start the ball rolling, and I never could get the Ambassadors at the right time to slim down my deck. In the end my deck was the one that was the bloated whale, not my opponents.
There is a reason that some of us have set strategies for a game, because they work. Or at the very least, they work for us. It’s hard to break away from a mindset and play the game effectively in another way. But it’s also good exercise for the old gray matter, so I shouldn’t complain.
Next weeks challenge is one that should be pretty easy for me, but might force some of you to go out and meet some more gamers. Next weeks challenge is to play a game with at least eight players.
Good luck, and Happy Gaming!