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Messages - Polk5440

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Thank you for soliciting feedback. I had made the decision to not purchase any more months after my current subscription ran out primarily (but not exclusively) because of the UI quality, lack of polish, and pace of UI improvements. This would be solved by complete implementations of 9, 10a, and 10b; to a much lesser extent 15 and 16. 

1. An offline client, allowing you to play campaigns against bots
An offline client is very important to me as an iPhone app. I would pay separately for it. Much less important if the client remains desktop only. For me, personally, unless campaigns were very compelling, I would not play or pay for them.

More compelling to me (and probably easier to implement) would be achievements.

2. A bot with a setting for different play styles

I like different "personalities" for chess bots; I don't know about Dominion. More important is bot strength. I might appreciate a mostly money bot that always goes for well-defined big money + X strategies.

3. A strong bot.

I would like the bot to be stronger, or at least not get trapped with certain cards and take into account Landmarks. It doesn't need to be the most amazing AI ever, it just needs to not completely throw games when certain cards are available.

4. Options for timed games

Yes! I would very much appreciate timed games. I have written suggestions for how I would implement a clock on this forum. 

5. Options for undo settings

I like the undo as-is for unrated games, but I view its necessity as an admission that the UI regularly fails the user. Better implementation of the UI and visualization of the unfolding game would reduce the need for many types of undos.

The one thing I would add is a visual way to undo multiple steps. The /undo chat command is tacky and very few people know about it, though it does work. (Improved documentation in Online Dominion would help.)

My personal preference is to make rated games more restrictive in the types of undos allowed.

6. Online mini-tournaments; the option to easily create one for you & your friends.

Not important to me with one exception: if there are going to be sponsored tournaments, these tournaments and features relevant to running the tournament (starting player order, contacting opponents, multi-game series) need to be done in the application itself rather than dictated from the forum.

7. Option to invite specific players to your table

Absolutely. Not a big deal when number of tables created is low... but that's not what you want long term, right?! It's horrible be waiting for a friend to join and having to ask other people to leave your table.

8. More translations (to what language?)

Not important for me.

9. Better animations when cards are gained/bought/played/...

Absolutely! The slow pace at implementing good solutions for this is one reason why I did not continue my subscription.

10A. Better visualization of split piles, Archive/Crypt contents, Prince targets, ...

Absolutely! The slow pace at implementing good solutions for this is one reason why I did not continue my subscription.

10B. Option to hide the log

Absolutely, but the game has to be playable without the log, first! The slow pace at implementing good solutions for this is one reason why I did not continue my subscription.

I would add hide and/or mute chat, as well. This does not have to wait until the game is playable without the log to implement.

11. Android app (or just improved compatibility?)

Not important to me (I have an iPhone).

12. iPhone app (or just improved compatibility?)

Very important to me. I would pay for the current version as a compatible downloadable offline app even without campaigns or better bots.

13. Downloadable game logs

Very important to me, but I understand why this isn't a top feature request outside of, say, committed f.ds members. I can't see it being a feature that actually drives sales.

There is a load log/replay game feature already built, but it's kind of useless if you can't easily search for old games. I had high hopes for this type of feature, but it hasn't delivered for me, yet.

14. Improved moderation (dealing with chat abuse, slowplayers, ...)

You are doing a good job with moderation. Hide/mute chat would be nice. An ability to report the user from in-game would be nice.

15. Tutorial on how to play Dominion

Not important for me to use. However, it is critical for a tutorial -- or at least a link to the official instruction books -- to exist for me to ever want to recommend Online Dominion to friends.

16. Tutorial on how to play dominion online.

Yes! Or at least documentation. This is a critical feature to exist for me to ever want to recommend Online Dominion to friends.

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: Game Reports & Discussion
« on: 06 October 2017, 12:03:39 AM »
A couple of thoughts from the other side of the table.

Use Gear to stack up Capitals to hit $14 for Dominate, then pay off the debt later. Jfrisch suggested Fool's Gold as an option instead of Silver, I'm not sure how I feel about it.

The thought crossed my mind, but I don't like Fool's Gold as much as Silver with Delve available, which I think we both utilized well.

Teacher tricks with Dungeon to upgrade Peasant quickly. I get ahead with early $5, give up part of my lead by having weird turns, and then lose the lead when I dud for a turn. Polk gets a pileout where he wins by 1 VP while gaining 10 Curses.

I had fallen behind on getting enough cards progressed in the Peasant line, but I had 4 Dungeons to Titandrake's 2 which gave my turns more consistency, so a dud on his part was more likely. I did feel like I was behind and purchased a Talisman late as a last resort of sorts. After he Discipled a Swamp Hag and played a Swamp Hag (which gives 3 Curses per buy) this gave me the pile-out even though I had only 3 buys. Labs were already empty and there were 4 Dungeons and 10 Curses. I went Dungeon-Dungeon-Curse to empty the piles with the help of Talisman for the first 10 Curse pile drive to a one point win I've had in, I think, years. We were commenting on how much rarer Curse pile drives seem to be with the newer expansions.

Kind of a weird board, turned into an Overlord powered engine. I get an early Province which interacts in a hard way: it gets topdecked by Rabble which is bad, but it makes Chariot Race activate more often, and lets you play Overlord as Explorer to gain Gold to hand. Having 6 Overlords to 4 and a cleaner deck let me build enough advantage to win.

This game was so confusing to me for some reason. The Province interaction, for sure, but also I realized I didn't have a clear picture of how many Overlords versus regular copies of cards I wanted.

Tax + City Quarter + Cultist with Moneylender to get rid of Coppers. Game comes down to who gets their City Quarter to go off and who doesn't. Polk does some nice things with Taxman.

I like to think my 3 Cultists to his 2 made a big difference, but eh, probably not.

Explosive game with trashing, Menagerie, Villa, and Horn of Plenty. Move to buy phase, play duplicate treasures, buy or gain Villa, play activated Menagerie, and repeat. I have a complicated win on my 2nd to last turn, but miss it. I miscount, then win anyway because Polk had a dud turn.

I don't utilize Villa well and missed a ton of opportunities, I'm sure. I thought my Steward-Steward was a better opening until I realized how much explosive potential in the kingdom there was. Now, I am not so sure.

Goons game with Haunted Woods for draw, plus Chapel and Wandering Minstrel. Polk opens a bit better and gets a great draw, I never catch up.

I do like Chapel-Minstrel openings, but I didn't know what to do with myself with such perfect shuffle luck on t3 and t4 and sat there for a minute trying to make sure I didn't somehow screw it up. The early Haunted Woods activation and Goons buy gave me enough of a lead to win the Minstrel split 7-3 and pretty much cruise for the win.

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: Round 3 Matchups & Results
« on: 05 October 2017, 06:45:09 AM »
Polk5440 defeats Titandrake 4-2 in rated games.

General Discussion / Re: Timed Games
« on: 28 September 2017, 08:31:15 PM »
sometimes you have to stop and consider things like what is left in your draw pile, your opponent's deck/probably hand composition, triggering the reshuffle, counting points or other decision points.  Those boards just take longer to play, and a clock is not, IMHO, a solution.

It is a strategic decision to play or avoid a complicated engine in Dominion much like it is a strategic decision to play or avoid a complicated position in chess. The fewer pieces on the board, the simpler the analysis. It may not be optimal to avoid tough positions in chess, but in clocked games many people often do so; it's constrained optimal for them.

Yes, there are many more things you do on a turn in Dominion than just move one piece, but that's why it's interesting to think about a good way to increment the clock.

Clocked game play would be different than high level Dominion play. And you know what? Sometimes I just want to play a more casual game without thinking too hard or waiting for someone else to think hard. Or I have to catch a train in 30 minutes and would like a guarantee that the game will end (other than me simply resigning). I understand many other people don't want this, but for me, the current "Practice Game" option does not cut it and I think timed games would.

I was watching Qvist's Championship tournament match yesterday....

Ah. Too bad about that. In the context of a serious tournament with no clock, I could see why complaining about speed of play would tick people off.

General Discussion / Re: Timed Games
« on: 28 September 2017, 07:20:24 PM »
This is not a discussion about slow rolling. This is a discussion about a preference for speedier games. Sometimes I will play a two hour game of chess. Sometimes I want to play a 10 minute clocked game. How I play in both scenarios is completely different.

I want the same option and guarantee for a quick game of Dominion against humans, as well.

General Discussion / Timed Games
« on: 28 September 2017, 06:00:22 PM »
The topic of timed games comes up now and again because different people like to play Dominion at different speeds. I thought I would lay out an example of where I would start to think about implementing a clock and see what others think.

There would be two options for playing a timed game, "Minutes per player" and "Clock runs continuously".

+ Play a timed game
    o Minutes per player
        x 5  (default for 4-6 players)
        x 15 (default for 2-3 players)
        x 30
    o Clock runs continuously
        x Yes (default)
        x No

"Minutes per player" with "Clock runs continuously" checked to "Yes" is pretty straightforward. It's a straight clock that starts counting down when a player needs to make a decision (e.g. start of turn) and ends when the next player needs to make a decision (e.g. start of next player's turn).

Setting "Clock runs continuously" to "No" would implement delays for when the player is interacting with the client. In particular,
    (1) The clock would not run during animations. To make this even among players, animation speed for all players at the table is set to the slowest speed preference among the players. 
    (2) A fixed amount of time (e.g. 1 second) is added to the clock each time a player makes a decision that advances his turn and requires an interaction with the client. For example, playing Peddler adds 1 second. Playing Pawn adds 1 second then clicking the Action/Buy option adds another 1 second. Checking what's in the trash or right-clicking on a card to read its text would not add time to the clock.

What happens if the clock runs out for a player?

    The player loses. In two player games, the game ends. In 3+ player games, the timed-out player becomes a spectator and a bot takes their place. No matter the score of the bot, the timed-out player gets last place. [Alternative: The timed-out player becomes a spectator and the game continues among the remaining players. The timed-out player gets last place.]

What happens if a player disconnects?

    The clock keeps running.

What about reactions, Envoy, Contraband, etc.?

    Following the rules of Dominion, play is sequential, so clocks stop and start as players need to make a decision. For example A plays Witch. A's clock stops, B's clock starts. B reveals Moat. B's clock stops, C is skipped (no Moat in hand and client does not allow for pretending so there is no decision for C to make). D's clock starts. D reveals Moat. D's clock stops, A's clock starts. A continues with the turn.

Why set 5 and 15 minutes to be the default?

    For a two player game, 15 minutes per player gives 30 minutes per game. Same with 5 minutes per player in a 6 player game. This lines up with the physical box's "30 minutes or less" estimation about time to play. Defaulting to less time per player in games with more players also makes sense because you can think during others' turns.

What about the inactivity time-out that's already implemented in games?

    For timed games, there would be no inactivity time-out, only a clock hitting 0 time-out.


So, what do you think?

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: Round 2 Matchups & Results
« on: 27 September 2017, 03:57:30 AM »
Polk5440 defeats phazex3375 (phazex) 4-1.


Card Bugs / Taxman
« on: 19 September 2017, 01:54:13 AM »
Taxman did not reveal opponent's hand when Treasure (Silver) was absent.

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: Rules Discussions
« on: 13 September 2017, 06:18:47 AM »

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: Rules Discussions
« on: 12 September 2017, 05:31:55 PM »
10.1 If you disconnect during a game, use the reconnect feature. If your opponent is disconnected, do not make use of the "make resign" feature. This will not be counted as winning the game.

11.2 Keep in mind that in a competitive situation such as this tournament, players take a long time to consider a play. Do not make use of the "make resign" feature if your opponent is thinking.

This is just asking for trouble. If we're not supposed to use the "make resign" button, there should be a tournament mode (see my earlier post) that turns this off.

10.2 If the disconnect takes an extended amount of time, write down the game number and reload the game (latest decision) at a later date.

Where are there instructions on how to do this?

10.3 If reloading the game fails, complete the remaining games of the match first. If no player has reached 3.5 points after completing the remaining games, contact your moderator about the lost game.

How do we contact our moderator?


Also, if my opponent and I speak different languages, how do we schedule matches, ask opponents to explain themselves, or otherwise interact if it's not built into the client? It seems like this tournament is multi-lingual and there is no requirement to conduct everything in English.

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: HTTPS for the forum
« on: 23 August 2017, 06:56:00 PM »

Dominion Online Championship 2017 / Re: Rules Discussions
« on: 23 August 2017, 06:51:26 PM »
I agree with Adam the tournament rules as originally written left something to be desired.

I was under the impression there was going to be a "tournament mode" or some such equivalent in the client that would essentially force adherence to most rules before an official tournament with actual prize money is offered. The f.ds rules plus moderator discretion is fine for a for-fun tournament with no actual monetary prize. Doing something with stakes that way is risky. 

In any case, this is not happening, so I would suggest (in addition to the rules thread) having instructions that outline WITH PICTURES IN CLIENT how to set up a tournament game and how to contact your opponent for matches. Where do I click? What options do I need to turn on/off?

Why is this important? The tournament currently assumes very detailed reading and 100% familiarity with everything in the most recent version of the client and a 20 game min does not ensure this. I've played hundreds of games and I still don't know exactly how to implement everything the rules ask of me without fishing around for a while. Having important instructions like "turn off spectator mode" buried in walls of rules text and further not telling me how to do this is risky. Some participants may not be fully aware of how politely agreeing to certain things ("Do you mind if I have spectator mode on?" "Sure!") could be abused or even that they should/should not be doing certain things.

So, in short, more direct guidance and more guardrails to prevent problems would be helpful!

Connection Problems / Game Frozen
« on: 19 July 2017, 09:08:30 PM »
#5293041 on tokyo.

Been frozen for 15 minutes after granting an undo request from my opponent. We both tried disconnecting and reconnecting. I am still in the game, showing his turn, but I am not being prompted to force him to resign.

Interface Issues / Re: incredibly small card windows
« on: 21 June 2017, 03:02:47 PM »
I agree with Ingex. It does not seem to be a resolution only issue.

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