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Messages - josh bornstein

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General Discussion / Re: Reporting user Freundhein
« on: 28 May 2020, 11:35:38 PM »
That is weird.  Was there some interaction relating to granting/denying an Undo request during this game?  That's the only reason I can think of as to why a player's reaction would suddenly become hostile.  (Maybe also if one player was taking a super-long time for moves, but I think you would have included that part of the chat, yes?)

Are these serious posts?!?  (Real question)  I mean, are there really people saying, "My enjoyment of this online game is significantly damaged, due to having an unfairly low rating for the first week or so."

I would like to believe that we humans are made of sterner stuff.  Please tell me that some of the earlier comments were made in jest!

Support / Re: How many cards in my discard deck?
« on: 25 May 2020, 09:08:25 PM »
I think it totally depends on the people you play with.  In my IRL group, we all play using our memories...except for 2 of my friends who have weaker memories, so we let them write down the information.  But my group plays mainly for fun, so we're really relaxed about where we want strict enforcement of the rules and where we don't.  (I can't remember the last time anyone in my group asked for a re-do and someone else objected, for example.)

Very competitive people might have a different reaction, of course.  Water finds its own level, and it's been my experience that it's been pretty easy to find people who share my more-casual and more-relaxed approach to playing.  The "Blacklist" function here is great...you can select-out people who are perfectly polite and friendly--but still do not share your approach to playing the game.  If you use this, and if you also make a point to add as friends the people who play the most enjoyable games with you; you'll end up with a nice-sized group of online players that are simpatico with you.  :-)

I think you will get out of online Dominion what you're willing to put into it, in terms of taking the time to eliminate people you don't enjoy playing with, and identifying people you especially do enjoy playing with.

Support / Re: How many cards in my discard deck?
« on: 25 May 2020, 06:35:26 AM »
You are correct in a sense.  In my IRL games, players who can keep decent track of their deck as it's played have a distinct advantage. In Gardens games (total cards), Vineyard (total Action cards), Silk Road (total Victory cards), and maybe others I'm not thinking of.

When you play IRL with friends, of course, you can modify the game however you all want...it's one of the advantages to IRL games, just as you can give out money in Monopoly for landing on Free Parking, even without that being part of the official rules.  But the game of Dominion is definitely designed to give a strategic advantage to players who can keep track of the deck.

It's actually a skill that is not hard to get pretty good at.  When you're playing the computer, just wait until there is a new shuffle, and then try to keep track of your total cards played, the victory cards played, and the action cards played.  We all have a huge advantage in that we can take those extra 5-10 seconds while our opponent is playing her hand to write down the running totals of our own hand.  If you are like me; you will be very weak at this in the beginning, then a bit better, and then a lot better.  I found that, after only a week of practicing, I was able to keep pretty accurate tallies.  And, of course, it will be rare to have a kingdom with Vineyard and Silk Road and Gardens all in the game.  Usually, just one of those cards will randomly appear in a kingdom, which of course means that you only have to keep track of one of those three conditions in your deck. 

1.  I think anyone has the right to report anyone, for any type of behavior. 
2.  I also think that, on the spectrum of behavior at an online website, this seems pretty anodyne.  I mean, I would not call someone an idiot for turning down an Undo request, and I don't think it's good behavior to call someone an idiot for any reason . . . and it certainly does not show good sportsmanship.  But my reaction would probably be to merely blacklist them, so I know I'll not be matched with them in the future.

My two cents only.  :-)

Game Log Issues / Re: stuck
« on: 25 May 2020, 01:00:06 AM »
You forgot to mention which steps you have tried already.

1.  Try clicking on "Kick"  (very bottom of screen, in small letters)
2.  If not work, try clicking on "Kick and Resign."

If these in-game solutions do not work, try the usual things we all try with any software or website problems: clearing out your cache; closing down browser and re-opening it; doing a full reboot of computer; etc..

General Discussion / Re: Should this undo be granted?
« on: 18 May 2020, 10:58:38 PM »
To continue on from what Jeebus was writing...

To use Wolf Den as an example (of why I'd always give an Undo there):  If I were playing you, and you wrote to me in chat, "I want to buy Card X, but not if it's my first such purchase.  I'm not remembering.  I can carefully go through the game log, and that will take 4 minutes to do.  Or, is it okay for me to buy it, and I'll do an Undo if I lose 3 points for it being my only X in my deck?" . . . I would *always* say, "God, save me and you the wasted time of searching the game log.  Buy the card and Undo it if it ends up being your first X." 

Since I would do the above, I see no reason why I would not grant the Undo if my opponent--at least partly in an effort to keep the game moving--bought the card without asking my permission in advance.  But then, I don't take the game particularly seriously, and I care not a whit about my ranking...and I know for sure that many players do not share my relaxed and strictly-fun-based approach.  :-)

General Discussion / Re: Looking for suggestions #2
« on: 18 May 2020, 10:40:38 PM »
First, welcome to the site.  I think you are taking the exact right approach.  (ie, start with the limited cards in Silver, and start with playing games against Lord Rat.)  I think you can play about 5 games in a half-hour against Lord Rat, right?  So, I think, even playing just those few games each day, you will pick up the cards much faster than you give yourself credit for.  After all, at least 75% of the cards are pretty straightforward.  There are cards where the instructions are a bit complicated.  And there are some cards that have unusual interactions with other cards.  But you'll get there faster than you expect.

Once you have the basic understanding of at least most of your cards, you'll be fine to play real opponents.  My advice:  Use The Chat function!  If you find yourself in a game where you do not recognize a card or two, just tell the other person in chat that you need a minute to read the card.  Almost all players remember what they were like when they first started, and they'll be fine with you taking a minute or so at the very beginning, once you have told them your beginner status.  (What irritates people, according to posts at this forum, are players who take a long time thinking about each move, or for many many moves in a game.)  As long as you move reasonably quickly after the starting phase of the game, I think you'll find that 985 of your opponents will be super-friendly.  At least, that's been my experience.

General Discussion / Re: Volunteer development?
« on: 18 May 2020, 10:33:15 PM »
I absolutely am NOT assuming bad faith.  "Bad faith" means something quite different from, "We do not want your help, even for free."  If I were the game developer, and I knew my game needed significant bug fixes and modifications, I *might* take offers of free help.  Or, I might not.  I have a really limited knowledge of website design.  So, with my limited knowledge, it seems very easy to give an outsider a project, let her/him try to fix it, and then test it out when that person turned in the work.  It will fix the problem.  (Suggesting this person knows what they are doing, and can take on other projects.)  Or it will not fix the problem.  (Thank that person for their effort, but not use them in the future.) 

I totally get that there are more considerations.  For example, what if someone does a "good" fix but intentionally or accidentally includes a virus or Trojan Horse in the fix?  But as I have asked my friends (who are experts in this field and are writing code for Google and Facebook), they seem to think that farming out work on a trial basis would be fine.

I think that we old-timers (ie, people who paid for a lifetime subscription at the old site, but who also have been willing to pay a monthly/yearly subscription here) are most dismayed at the apparent lack of interest by Steph et al to fix some of the most glaring problems.  IMO, this is especially true in games against Lord Rat (my games against actual players has gone quite smoothly).  To give just a few glaring examples, I immediately resign any game where Counterfeit comes up, since Lord Rat buys up each one, and never uses it 'properly.'  It's essentially impossible to lose such a game to LR, so it's very boring to play a Counterfeit game.  When Bank is in the kingdom, LR plays Bank first or second of its treasures, pointlessly giving up major coins.  It should be a 10 minute fix to change the coding to "ALWAYS play Bank last."  And with Contraband, LR always picks "Gold" as the thing to block.  I get that this would be almost impossible to code well.  But you could at least change it to, "Always pick Gold, UNTIL first Prov. has been bough.  After this, always pick Prov."  That's a 30 minute coding fix.

Players have been asking for years--for years!!!--for minor and easy changes like this.  I do not think Steph's refusal to effect this fixes is bad faith.  I just think it is SO LOW a priority, that it will never actually get done.  (We get occasional updates from Steph, giving us the fixes he's done over the previous X number of weeks.  So, we are aware that work is being done.  It's partly the slow pace.  And, partly, the fact that lots of problems that have been around since the very beginning are still in effect--with no end in sight.  (If Steph had ever asked for my advice, I would have said, "Create a list of things to do, in the order you intend to address them, and make that list public.  And then follow-through on working through that list.  And then, give a 5-minute monthly updates on your progress.")

As I said, I have cheerfully handed over my money, month-after-month.  And I've been a helpful and friendly contributor to these forums.  I think that has earned me the right to (politely) offer my feedback . . . and yes, also my criticisms on the rare occasions when I think it's worth my time and effort to state them.

Your mileage, of course, may vary.  ;-)

General Discussion / Re: Volunteer development?
« on: 17 May 2020, 08:45:00 PM »
I don't think that is true. 
I think (IMO) that the truth is:  "There is a LONG LIST of bugs and software modifications that need to be made.  But addressing these are so low on our list of priorities, we prefer to refuse help, even when it's offered for free."

I agree that there may not be, technically, such an official pull list.  But there are a ton of fixes and improvements that can be made, including ones that many many many people have been requesting for many many many months.  So, regardless of semantics; I am guessing that it will annoy many paid subscribers when people say, "I'm happy to help out, for no money.", and Dominion's response is a polite version of, "No thank you. We don't need or want assistance."

I'm not sure I'm annoyed.  But I am profoundly disappointed.  The subtext seems to be, "While we are happy to collect your subscription money, we're also fine with the game as it is."

General Discussion / Re: Reporting player for racism
« on: 14 May 2020, 08:09:45 PM »
Yesh!  That is pretty appalling.  I think most bad behavior should not lead to an automatic expulsion.  But this sort of thing calls for an immediate response.  There are children playing on this site.  Given the essentially unlimited number of usernames, I think even bigoted assholes can find an 'annoying' username that will be acceptable.

I join you in hoping that the Powers That Be move quickly on this.

Your gameplay was fine.  Not remotely even a close call.  This was a case of your opponent failing to understand how the Wall event works.  Or she/he knew, but forgot all about Wall in the heat of the game.

For the almost-zero cost (ie, losing a game they should have won, in a game that you guys were not playing for money), your opponent learned a valuable lesson, and now is much less likely to do that sort of brain-fart again in the future.  If you had just forfeited, you would have deprived your opponent of this important lesson.

(Of course, in games with no alternate ways of gaining or losing VP, I don't see the point of playing out a game where a player is hopelessly behind.  But that's obviously not the situation you are talking about.)

General Discussion / Re: Reporting Ashkenazy
« on: 06 May 2020, 08:56:26 AM »
1.  Sorry you had that experience.  It's never nice when one encounters a rude player.  Or one who uses profanity.

2.  I am confused about what was scary.  Saying "Fuck you" to someone online, when you don't know the other person's real name, address, or even country seems mean, but also a million miles away from an actual threat.  Can you explain what was so scary about the situation...I feel like there is a lot missing from this story.

3. Anyway, you should definitely blacklist this person.  If enough people are like you and complain about this player, then she or he will indeed be banned.

Hopefully, you will have better luck in your future games.  I've never experienced anyone like this, so I hope your future opponents will have better manners.

General Discussion / Re: extra turns, in a tie game
« on: 05 May 2020, 02:22:57 AM »
Huge thanks.
Any way to stick these links in a sticky?  Perhaps at the top of the How To Play > FAQ sub-forum?

General Discussion / Re: extra turns, in a tie game
« on: 04 May 2020, 07:06:51 PM »
Do you have links to all those rulebooks?  Those would be super helpful.  Probably helpful enough to so many people that having a sticky with links to all the rules would be a good thing to have somewhere here (or even better, as a permanent button on the Dominion game page??).

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