Caleb Stanford Blog

3rd place match -- Dominion Online tournament 2019

games dominion

Last post about the tournament! This tournament has been a lot of fun. Previous post about round 7 (semifinals) is here. I lost 2 to 4 and definitely misplayed, especially in game 4. I won games 2 and 5.

For each kingdom, try to guess the most valuable cards, i.e. which cards are most important to the best strategy. For reference, a list of all Dominion cards can be found here. Good luck!

Game 1

Kingdom 1


Most valuable card(s): Jack of All Trades

Jack/Silver (or Jack/Merchant maybe) open is fairly clear. From there, the right strategy here is probably just money-focused. I tried to do Conclave village with Diplomat, Werewolf, and Council Room (and a few other uniques), but it wasn't fast enough compared to money. Also, we both got nice Mint trashes at some point. Another question is whether you can try to go for a Feodum-based strategy, but probably it's still not fast enough.

Game 2

Kingdom 2


Most valuable card(s): Hamlet, Peddler, Triumph. Honorable Mention: Scheme, Bridge Troll.

Interesting board because there's cost reduction and gains, but no draw. So you can only hope to get about 5 gains on a given turn. However, the clear interaction is Peddler/Hamlet: if you can play, say, 4 Hamlets, then you can gain 5 Peddlers. So you want to try to get the entire Peddler stack.

I had some unlucky shuffles and my opponent got Scheme instead of Hamlets, which I didn't like at the time, but now I can see the value in an early Scheme or two; it helps line up actions for Peddler. Inventor on the open is good; one or two Bridge Trolls are good, but the deck can't support too many. Then you just Triumph a turn or two, and the game ends on 3-piles.

Game 3

Kingdom 3


Most valuable card(s): Diplomat, Lookout, Squire.

This one I'm less sure of. The question is whether a Jack/Money variant is just better than the engine, as it was in Game 1. I skipped Jack so I could trash more aggressively. I love Lookout here. But I lost because I didn't get Diplomats quickly enough and so my opponent found a way to empty the remaining 4 diplomats in a turn. Squire goes well with Diplomat and becomes Giant when trashed with Lookout. Giant is what tipped the balance for me to want to play the engine.

Game 4

Kingdom 4


Most valuable card(s): Recruiter, Storeroom, Library. Maybe Charm.

I mainly want to just play with the first three cards, but you can play with most of the board here. Fishing Village for some actions (not as good as Recruiter for actions though, probably); Bandit for Golds which can be trashed; Charm is reasonable but I kinda disrespected it, and only opponent got them, I went heavily for Storeroom/Library. Mission could be good here; one of us should have gotten it (allows getting villagers, and paying off Royal Blacksmith debt). Apothecary could also be good early on and interacts with Storeroom nicely.

Game 5

Kingdom 5


Most valuable card(s): Haunted Woods, Cargo Ship, Throne Room.

My opponent went solely for Haunted Woods basically; I ended up winning playing the more interesting deck, with Throne Room, Lurker, Nomad Camp, and of course lots of Haunted Woods draw. Awkward and inconsistent but when you can get like 3 Haunted Woods plays in, you draw a LOT the next turn. The real challenge is doing this fast enough to catch up on the Battlefield points. Silk Roads end up being enough to outscore in the end.

Game 6

Kingdom 6


Most valuable card(s): Trader, Crop Rotation.

Not much else to do here but Trader/Money. It would be Soothsayer, but the problem is once you have a Trader or two, the opponent doesn't want to buy Soothsayer: it basically says "opponent gains a Silver", which actually helps them, and it's kinda slow for you. Crop Rotation is good and I slept on it a bit. There is also a trick you can do with Villa and Trader (that both of us seem to have missed): gain the Villa and then trash it for a lot of silvers.

Edited on .