Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

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Wonderful Plays
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by Wonderful Plays »

wakeywakey wrote: 15 April 2021, 11:50 https://boardgamearena.com/table?table=164364316

Opponent took Dragon Lair, Alchemist Tower & Catacombs.
I rinsed Tree of Life + Ring of Midas to grab Pyramids, Statue and a 2 pointer.

Lair is very strong, but not unbeatable.
I'd say grabbing Alchemist is a waste. Should have focused on pyramids earlier.

And my argument is not that it's unbeatable, it's very beatable with athanor and philo stone strats, but my point is that there are boards when it is the best strategy and then whoever can grab it 1st turn just wins the game on the spot.
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sheldortheconquerer
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by sheldortheconquerer »

https://boardgamearena.com/9/resarcana?table=175363478#

(Necromancer) dragons lair turn 1 rush beaten with a (witch) alchemist tower +HOP round 1 into a catacombs round two; opponent and I each got reanimate once. The witch and Horn of plenty helped a lot certainly.
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nmego
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by nmego »

I'd say that Dragon's Lair is certainly not as problematic as Philosopher's stone.
lucalulu
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by lucalulu »

I don't know why anyone here would consider the philosopher stone or athanor as "problematic" as the dragon's lair. In the last two weeks I paid careful attention to the various strategies in the game. It's a strongly imbalanced card. Here's why:

- The Dragon's lair is always there, if it's turned on its side, so no matter the deck or your cards, you can get it. TBH, If it isn't there, I usually phew and think "oh, we're going to actually play the game now".

- Protection against it: since it's taken at the first turn, you need to be able to hurt the adversary at the first turn. So, either you spend everything on a dragon at the inception - which actually means you burn off all of your resources ONLY to hurt the adversary , or you are that lucky that you have the elvish bow and you shoot (once). That is, if the player doesn't have one green (which is very easy to get), in which case you've got no protection.

- There are no costs involved. Most other cards require you to spend other resources to get gold. Here you have the only card, apart from the Horn of plenty, which you need to have in the deck anyway, that you tap and gets you golds. And not one, but two. You tap twice, you get a monument. You tap the boot twice, and if you had other two golds, you can get a monument. In term of turns and resources, these are higher costs.

- let us maybe consider another place of power that could be powerful - the catacombs. tap and have a point. if you want more, spend 5 blacks. I rarely saw someone that could actually gather so many blacks to win with it. The Sunken reef has a better efficiency, I often used it, but the velocity with which I could actually make points is not comparable to Dragon's Lair - this is because to get points you need turns, while to get one monument, assuming you have something to reanimate (which you can have every other turn), you need exactly three turns, and you get 1 or 2 points + some good power.

- this leads me to the next point - the turns cost. to play any other strategy apart from collecting gold and buying monuments, it takes at least double the effort in terms of turns-to-make-points. The alchemist rarely leads to victory, as you need to collect 4 different resources, I guess most of us gets it because it gives 3 resources per turn + a good OPTION (I'd say 30% of the times used) to make actual points. This is because it takes turns to convert resources and to get them.

Compared to the other "related" cards above:
- The Athanor can be used only at the second or third turn, it can be used ONCE (realistically), and you need to concentrate on producing resources FASTER than the adversary gets the monuments. But seriously, unless you have incredibly good cards, and you can have 20 of the same at the third or fourth turn (which is the limiting point in the game, I think), it's useless. This is also working on the assumption that you have the Athanor on your first hand - and you need to do only that. You can't just tap and get golds, while playing other stuff.
- The philosopher stone needs less involvement, but it's mostly the same as the Athanor. If you burn off the cards in your hand, you can play it in the first turn, and then accumulating resources fast enough, you MIGHT be able to arrive there. TBH, I rarely could use it effectively, this is because, as mentioned, you need to get lucky and have it in the deck

In summary, unless you play on the assumptions that you have some GREAT cards, like athanor or philostone + knife with some dragon, then you can already concede. You could also have the elvish bow, but it's useless to oneself, if you use it only to hurt the adversary. and even if you hurt, they can just tap again.

Just today I used it, and the other player just conceded after passing the 50% progression. I picked it because I had three dragons in my deck, so it would have been a sound strategy, but since I had no dragons in the first two rounds, I just produced golds. This is not playing, this is just plain boring.

I remember (maybe?) twice I was able to beat someone that got it, and it's because they were beginners.

I think it shouldn't be the case that one card, which 50% of the times is available to the first lucky player, to determine the endgame. Otherwise it's really difficult to enjoy the match. If you have no good cards at the first or second turn, then you can just pass until the opponent wins or concedes.
federspiel30
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by federspiel30 »

VERY GOOD explained! :idea:

I'll go even further and say that Dragon's Lair destroys the games in which its included. It simply to easy to get gold that is otherwise much harder to get. One card movement and you get 2 gold = 4 resources is to much.

I've lost close against DL many times, but in very most cases you don't keep 2 gold every time DL is tapped. If the DL owner has a card refresher in addition, then it's all over.
AND, there is not automatically everything OK if you can win against DL only under specific conditions. The card is already unacceptable if you easily win 85% of the games and this is by test a fact.

I think an errata rule is due, so that tapping DL only brings +1 gold. The card would still be interesting with its other functions, but no longer far superior.
Or it would have to become even more expensive (e.g. 4 of each resource), so that the race against DL becomes exciting again.

Second point (off topic): A dragon attack should be a bit more powerful.

Otherwise, I think that Res Arcana is really very well balanced.
Last edited by federspiel30 on 23 August 2021, 14:11, edited 1 time in total.
federspiel30
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by federspiel30 »

After a lot of games i must say, dragons lair distortions this game. Yes, there are strategies against it but in most of all cases DL is enough to win. I never lost when i had DL by the way. The point is, since every player goes for DL when it appears DL just avoids other exiting confrontation that would happen otherwise. In the real game wevbanned DL by a broadly carried agreement in our group.
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nmego
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by nmego »

- The philosopher stone needs less involvement, but it's mostly the same as the Athanor. If you burn off the cards in your hand, you can play it in the first turn, and then accumulating resources fast enough, you MIGHT be able to arrive there. TBH, I rarely could use it effectively, this is because, as mentioned, you need to get lucky and have it in the deck
- You never play PS in the first round, you're supposed to play it when you can win the game.
- You also don't need that much support, I find that in 100% of my games when I grab PS, I can easily achieve 10+ VP by round 4 (Often 15) (sometimes by round 3).

Philosopher's stone is, imo, the most busted card in the game by far, it is incredibly hard to beat it from the other side. Athanor is also quite good, but a bit trickier to use, because you need it early. It is also why I've grown tired of this game, one of my latest games had my opponent passing on PS in the draft (????), and me getting it, the game was just over, I didn't even have to think, and I made a few mistakes, won pretty easily.
federspiel30
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by federspiel30 »

I'm afraid, if now everyone pulls about his unloved cards, The arguments are done from nagging. That is not my intention. I am very precise in my approach and yes there are some very strong cards, but I only see the problem with Dragons Lear that you really can only be beaten in very specific cases.
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alafter
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by alafter »

I think to beat the dragon's lair/catacomb strategy you need to work twice as hard with another strategy--if you're lucky enough to have stuff to counter it.

Doesn't seem very fun at all.
federspiel30
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Re: Dragon's Lair -- your feelings?

Post by federspiel30 »

That's exactly how it is. But in order not to criticize, it is simply contradicted.

In our game round we have also experimented with DL tapping brings only 1 gold and DL + dragon brings only 1 victory point (use one of both). This makes things much better. I would start the catacombs with at least one minus point.
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