« Last post by aku chi on 19 May 2017, 05:32:53 am »
It also seems to me that after the first opening strategies, the mid-game is the place where you can really screw up. I often will make a mistake there I regret - or just make a play I didn't realize would harm me. I expect 50+ players do not do that.
I see sub-50 players make a lot more mistakes in the midgame than 50+ players. Though, from my perspective (60+ player), the midgame of Dominion is generally the easiest to master. To put it another way, I'm most surprised when my good-match opponent makes an obvious mistake in the mid game, like buying Gold over Laboratory in kingdoms where that's silly (most kingdoms). There are kingdoms where the midgame is challenging, of course - mostly those with mid-turn gaining.
Early game decisions are ostensibly easier, but they have a huge impact on the rest of the game, and many kingdoms present tough choices (usually between cycling, economy, and attacks). I think it's tougher to intuit the right choices in the early game; you just have to play a lot to get a sense for best opening practices. Of course, you can go pretty far copying the opening of a better player!
Late game decisions are the most challenging, IMO, especially in engine mirrors with plentiful gaining. There are often super-complicated decisions about which piles to lower when; and if, when, and how to green. This is where I find myself most advantaged against players in the 50s and where I feel most vulnerable against the strongest players.