7 things about life I learned from the game Ascension – Part 6

30 01 2013

6. Things have no inherent value; value changes as the situation evolves

What makes a “good” card? While there are a few objectively good cards that are always useful to any player, most of the cards in the game are applicable to a certain strategy or situation. With some planning and consideration, a player can leverage their knowledge to evaluate what is truly a worthwhile investment.

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There are a few cards which are always good to have, no matter what. Everything else can be quite subjective.

Some cards are practically worthless without other key components that play off of them. Try to avoid purchasing these cards until you have secured other parts of the “combo” that work by themselves.

Banishment cards are some of the most sought after assets in the game but late in the game, once all the banishing is done, they become worthless and are ironically themselves prime candidates for banishment!

There are certain cards that pay great dividends in the late game, but require your deck to develop and reach that high-gear end game state before they are truly worthwhile. Don’t snag these in lieu of more immediately useful cards if your deck is not yet matured enough to make good use of it.

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Void Initiate is highly desirable in the first few turns, however in the mid-late game it is a horrible buy, when you’ve either already done the majority of your deck-thinning or it’s too late to start. Conversely, cards like Tablet of Time’s Dawn and Twofold Askara are not especially helpful in the early turns but in towards the end of the game can be astonishingly effective.

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Certain cards are not as worthwhile until you have the resources to “fuel” them to their maximum potential.

Cards like Master Dhartha are always good…if they are in your deck; if they are in the opponents deck, they are very, very bad. Learn to banish power cards instead of holding out on the remote chance that you might afford it before a more focused opponent has an opportunity.

It is also important not to disregard the events that show up from the center row that will enhance the value of the cards of their associated faction. Always take these into account when weighing your options, but also remember that the event will probably phase out eventually…

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Certain cards get a huge increase in effectiveness when their favored event is out. Counting on those events to show up might get you in trouble, but when the events are actually out you have to pay attention to how much more powerful these cards become.

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And finally, going back to the awareness advice (part 2), always keep in mind that the game is won by way of honor points. Nothing else really matters as far as the rules go. At the end of the game in particular, keep that fact at the front of your mind when you are making the decision on what to purchase.

Having a little perspective and analytical thinking will help develop the wisdom on what is a good move or not taking into account the current strategic situation. One man’s filth is another man’s feast, a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, and similar meditations on worth are all applicable and evident in this game, just like in the real world. Remember that the value of things fluctuate, and your needs will change with ebb and flow of the tides of time.


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