The second edition of Dominion was an update to all pre-Empires sets that started in Fall 2016. It involved a number of formatting changes, such as a bigger font where possible, better wordings, and the replacing of all masculine pronouns ("he", "his") with gender-neutral pronouns ("they", "their"). It was most pronounced in the Base and Intrigue sets, which saw a number of functional changes to existing cards, as well as the removal and replacement of some cards that, in retrospect, seemed weak or not fun to play with.
Currently, all sets have been released under the second edition except for . Proofs of second edition promotional cards have been made, but not all have been released yet. All cards, except for some from , have been updated on Dominion Online.
For consistency, this wiki will use second edition rules and wordings wherever possible.
 Formatting changes
A comparison between 1st (left) and 2nd (right) edition versions of Cellar
The formatting changes were first announced a few days before Empires was previewed:
Well this is unprecedented, but I'm not made of stone. Here are some spoilers about card layout.
- A bigger font is used on cards that don't have lots of text.
- "They" is used instead of "he."
- +'s in the body of text are now in bold.
- Card texts are more carefully centered than ever before.
In addition to these, previous sets received some wording changes, such as Cellar's, shown to the right. For the most part, these wording changes have no effect on how the card is played; however, a few received functional changes:
- , , received a "you may" wording for accountability purposes
- was changed so players with no cards in hand are skipped
- was changed so each gained per token on a pile is a separate event, rather than gaining all of them at once
- was changed to function in a similar way to
- was changed so the Possessing player also receives all tokens (from ) gained
- was changed to trash before gaining , which matters if trashing a card that can gain Victory cards when trashed
- was changed so you can no longer choose Actions that are not discarded that turn, such as Durations
A few cards did not receive functional changes, but instead had their wording changed to match their intended function, where previously it was ambiguous:
- was changed to make it clear it doesn't visit, as previously its wording matched , which does visit
- , now refer to finishing "playing" an Action, as opposed to "resolving", which had never been referenced on any other card
- now explicitly says the player may play Treasures before buying a Black Market card
- now says "put in hand" rather than "draw", matching its intended function to ignore the -1 Card token
- lets you look at what remains of your deck when you shuffle, in order to retain its function despite the new rule (see below)
With the re-release of Guilds & (as one set), a major visual change was made: all references to "take a Coin token" were changed to "+X Coffers". This has no effect on any actual gameplay, but does let the text on the relevant cards take up a little less space, and highlights the taking of Coffers by making it a vanilla bonus.
 Rule changes
With the release of the second editions for the base set and Intrigue, their rulebooks were also updated. For the most part, this was simply streamlining the rules and putting them together in a more compact, friendly way, but there was one, somewhat subtle change to the rules with regards to shuffling. Previously, when you wanted to draw a card (or otherwise do something with your deck), and your deck was empty, you shuffled, then continued drawing. So if you played with 2 cards left in your deck, you would have drawn those 2, then shuffled, and drawn 1 more. In the second edition, when your deck is running low, you first check to see if there's enough left to do something with, and if there's not, you shuffle your discard pile, and put that under what's left of your deck. So in the previous situation, with 2 cards left in your deck when you play Smithy, you'd shuffle your discard pile, slide it under those 2 cards, and then draw your 3 cards. Donald X. has cited the ruling as making it easier for situations other than drawing with a near-empty deck.
 Removed cards
See: Removed cards
 Added cards
To replace the cards removed from the base set and Intrigue, 7 new cards were added to each set. Some functioned as fairly direct replacements (such as for ), but others filled needs that Donald X. had felt were lacking in the sets. For instance, the first edition of the base set had several big money enablers, but not a lot of engine support, leading some players of the base game to view it as a solved game where you mostly bought Treasures, so the second edition added several cantrips to balance the set strategically.
 Secret History
Ah, Love! could thou and I with Fate conspireTo grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire!Would not we shatter it to bits - and thenRe-mould it nearer to the Heart's Desire!
I can't trace exactly how it happened, but over time, I gradually built up an interest in revising the main set and Intrigue. The reasons piled up.
- It would be nice to have the prettier Base Cards in the main set.
- We could have a playmat for the trash.
- I could improve the rulebooks.
- I could improve card wordings.
- Hey I could actually replace some cards with better ones.
We couldn't replace cards without providing them separately. We could do that though, we could provide them separately. A small box with just the new cards. Two mini-expansions (that would go out of print when demand for them fell off).
In June 2015 I decided to go for it. I started thinking about it and talking about it with playtesters; I didn't actually test any new cards until July. Empires was still going on but that was fine, I would test Empires cards and slip in the new main set / Intrigue cards. Later of course it got to be the focus. Initially I was going to replace five cards and add one (there's space due to taking out the randomizer-backed base cards). I eventually came around to replacing six (and adding one) instead.
My goal with the replacements was to increase the number of decks to build, the number of things to do, while keeping things simple. Simplicity is tough with so many expansions but man I am pretty pleased with the complexity level of the new main set cards. The Intrigue cards are more complex but still pretty reasonable. There was the additional goal of just fixing any other problems I could fix, whatever problems there were, but the main goal was to have more things you could do.
Normally these posts just talk about new stuff, but today I also get to talk about the old stuff. Why did I replace cards? Right, to make the sets better. The main set and Intrigue have the most duds - the most cards that experienced players rarely buy, that usually aren't worth considering. Or, in the case of some main set cards, that just didn't add much to the game, didn't give you things to do. Seaside is 3rd but much better by this metric; after Seaside there just aren't many duds to speak of in any one expansion. I have big plans to fix wordings in every pre-Empires set, but only Dominion and Intrigue are getting new cards.
If I redid the main set from scratch, more things would change. For example I might do a draw-first Cellar like because that's simpler. There are rules things: for example I might change how Reactions work. But I was just replacing six cards, adding one, and keeping the game compatible with all the expansions.
Actually, there's one rules change: the exact way it tells you to deal with shuffling is different. It now says, when you have to do something with more cards than are left, shuffle your discard pile, put it under your deck, then do the thing (or, put the remaining cards on top of the shuffled cards, same difference). This has no functional difference though (except with the promo Stash, which will get a wording to fix this when reprinted), and was already how some people did it. I changed that (from "do the thing with the remaining cards, then shuffle to get the rest") to clarify tricky situations like, what if I trash with - is the card I draw one of the ones I'm looking at, or what? "Do the thing with the remaining cards" worked a lot better when the thing was always "draw." The rulings haven't changed but now it's easier to see what happens. It's also easier to remember how many cards you have left to draw after playing your Smithy and shuffling (though I personally was already putting the 1-2 cards on the Smithy while shuffling so I'd remember).
In the end it seemed reasonable to also change three cards functionally in a very mild way. Moneylender, Mine, and Throne Room all should say "you may." It keeps you honest. You play Moneylender for some exotic reason (like making cheaper) but don't want to trash a Copper (that you do have in hand). You can get away with cheating. The card should either make you reveal that you have no Copper, or be optional so that it's legal to not trash the Copper (and being optional is simpler/shorter and so preferred). This essentially never comes up for Moneylender and Mine. It does come up with Throne Room once in a while though. It was a question, should the mini-expansions include these changes. In the end it seemed like, that's such a poor product - buying Moneylender etc. again just for "you may." I didn't want to be selling that to people extra, that didn't seem like an option. The options were not making the changes, or including the changes in the set but not the mini-expansion. I went with the latter and well I hope everyone is okay with that.
A similar thing came up for one Intrigue card, . You can potentially lock your opponent out of cards (in a 2-player game) with certain combinations - for example, , Masquerade, Militia. Every turn you play out the rest of your deck, Militia them, King's Court a Masquerade, and they pass you three cards that you trash, while you don't pass them any. It is not an especially common situation, and most players who don't read up on these things in forums probably don't know about it. Still it has a fix - having Masquerade not include players with no cards in hand - and here was my chance to do it. I went for it. Again this is not part of the mini-expansion.
The plan was to update the base cards in both sets, but Jay started thinking, why not shift Intrigue to a regular expansion? Since Base Cards is a product now, you can just buy Base Cards and whatever expansion; it doesn't have to be Intrigue. People who want 5-6 player support can buy Base Cards; people who don't want it don't have to pay extra to have it included in Intrigue.
So all together the changes are:
- Six cards dropped
- Seven cards added
- Three cards changed very mildly ("you may") / one card changed mildly
- Base cards improved with art / base cards dropped
- Other cards changed to have better phrasings (that are functionally the same).
- Rulebooks improved
- A trash playmat in the main set
The base cards are actually better than the Base Cards product ones (which will be updated to match); they have art but reinstate the big symbol (but smaller). In some cases the art had to be nudged down to fit the symbol nicely. (in Prosperity) will actually get new art; there was no nice way to put the coin on or above the pyramid.
Card text will change for all sets prior to Empires (which already has these changes, so you can go see how you like them there right now). The different kinds of changes:
- Some wordings are improved to be clearer / simpler.
- We now use "they" instead of "he."
- A bigger font is used on cards that can use it.
- +Cards etc. in the body of the text are in bold.
- Layout will be more consistent and have better text centering etc.
A very small number of other cards may have changes. I don't have a complete list (and won't until all the work is done); the idea is to only do this when the wording gets a lot better and the change almost never comes up. It's not all the stuff I would change if only; it's really confined to nice improvements that only matter in exotic corner cases.
And will change to also give you tokens, but that's already errata to handle Debt
tokens. And will have a wording that makes it clear it doesn't interact with Guilds coin tokens