Triggered effects

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The default time in Dominion at which a card has an effect is when it is played. If an Action or Treasure card's text doesn't state specifically when the instructions on it are to be carried out, it is when the card is played. Since cards are played one at a time in Dominion (even Treasure cards), there is never any ambiguity about what order to resolve these effects in: play one card, resolving its effects; then play the next card, resolving its effects. Similarly, Events by default are resolved when you buy them.

Many cards, however, and several Events and Landmarks, have effects at specifically-stated other times. This page is an index of the various situations that can cause a card's abilities to be triggered. This can be interpreted as data for a flow chart: For example, if you are buying a card, look at the list of "when you buy a card" triggers to see if any of those effects apply, and if they do, execute them; then you can see if any of the effects triggered by buying a card themselves trigger other effects, and so on. It is often the case that a single trigger can activate multiple cards' abilities simultaneously, and then the abilities must be resolved one at a time using the rules below.

Some effects that take place at times other than when a card is played are thought of as being "set up" by playing a card; even though the effect itself takes place later, the act of playing the card is what causes it to happen. For example, playing the same card twice will cause the later effect to take place twice, and moving the card out of play will not prevent the set-up effect from taking place. Similarly, some Events "set up" effects for later when bought. Such effects are in general not listed here. Other effects are caused by a card being in a particular location, such as the play area, regardless of how or why it got there.

Cards in italics have been removed.

Contents

Official Rules

  • If multiple cards resolve at the same time on your turn (for example, Duration cards that do something “at the start of your next turn”), you choose what order to resolve them.
  • A card that affects multiple players during your turn still resolves in player order, affecting you first if it affects all players and then proceeding clockwise.

Other rules clarifications

  • If an effect causes you to gain or draw multiple cards, you always in principle gain or draw them one at a time, resolving any on-gain or on-draw abilities of one before moving on to the next. However, if you are instructed to trash or discard multiple cards, unless that effect is explicitly sequential, they are trashed or discarded at the same time. For example, StewardSteward.jpg can trash 2 cards; if you choose that option, you may not trash one card, resolve an on-trash effect (such as Market SquareMarket Square.jpg's), then trash the other card. Both cards must be trashed simultaneously, and on-trash effects resolved with afterwards. Conversely, RemakeRemake.jpg trashes two cards, but it instructs you specifically to trash them one at a time.
  • At the end of the game, your discard pile, your hand, cards you have in play, cards you've set aside, and cards you've put on mats all count as part of your deck.

Punctual effects

These are abilities that are executed at a single point in time: you fully resolve the card's ability by following the instructions on the card in order, and then move on to the next ability to be resolved.

At the beginning of the game

These do not happen in any particular order, and should all be completely resolved before the first turn begins. For example, if the Bane for Young Witch is the Black Market, then you must prepare a Black Market deck; conversely if Young Witch is in the Black Market, you must add a Bane pile.

At the start of your turn

Playing a card

When you play a card, first

These effects take place "first", before other effects triggered by playing a card.

For any type of played card…

If the played card is an Action

If the played card is an Attack

  • MoatMoat.jpg: Another player may reveal this from their hand to be unaffected by the Attack.
  • Secret ChamberSecret Chamber.jpg: Another player may reveal this from their hand. If they do, they draw 2 cards, then puts 2 cards from their hand on top of their deck.
  • DiplomatDiplomat.jpg: Another player may reveal this from their hand of 5 or more cards. If they do, they draw 2 cards, then discard 3 cards.
  • Horse TradersHorse Traders.jpg: Another player may set this aside from their hand.
  • BeggarBeggar.jpg: Another player may discard this [from their hand]. If they do, they gain two SilversSilver.jpg, putting onto their deck.
  • UrchinUrchin.jpg: You may trash this from play if it is not the played Attack card. If you do, gain a MercenaryMercenary.jpg from the Mercenary pile.
  • Caravan GuardCaravan Guard.jpg: Another player may play this from their hand.

When you play a card

These effects take place after the card enters the play area but before you resolve any of its own on-play abilities.

If the played card is an Action

  • EnchantressEnchantress.jpg: If it's the first time you've played an Action this turn, get +1 Card and +1 Action instead of following its instructions.
  • CitadelCitadel.jpg: If it's the first time you've played an Action this turn, play it again afterwards.
  • Ways: You may perform the Way instead of following this card's instructions.

If the played card is a SilverSilver.jpg

  • MerchantMerchant.jpg: If it's the first Silver you're played this turn, +$1.
  • SaunaSauna.jpg: You may trash a card from your hand.

On-play effects

The vast majority of Action and Treasure cards have on-play effects of some kind. Several Treasures, plus the Action card Noble BrigandNoble Brigand.jpg, use phrasing along the lines of "when you play this". Despite the similarity of this wording to things like "when you play an Attack card", this is not the same trigger. On-play effects of cards always take place after the "when you play a card" effects of other cards.

Since most cards have on-play effects of their own, we do not list them all here. However, two cards have an effect that modifies the on-play ability of another card:

Directly after you finish playing an Action card

When you buy a card

Remember that buying a card happens before gaining it, so all these effects happen before you gain the relevant card, and before any of its on-gain effects happen.

When you buy any card:

  • EmbargoEmbargo.jpg: Gain a CurseCurse.jpg card per Embargo token on that pile.
  • TalismanTalisman.jpg: If the card costs $4 or less and is not a Victory card, gain a copy of it.
  • GoonsGoons.jpg: +1VP.
  • HoardHoard.jpg: If it is a Victory card, gain a GoldGold.jpg.
  • HagglerHaggler.jpg: Gain a cheaper non-Victory card.
  • HovelHovel.jpg: If it is a Victory card, you may trash this from your hand.
  • Merchant GuildMerchant Guild.jpg: +1 Coffers
  • Haunted WoodsHaunted Woods.jpg: Put your hand on top of your deck in any order.
  • Swamp HagSwamp Hag.jpg: Gain a CurseCurse.jpg.
  • PlanPlan.jpg: If the bought card has your Trashing token on its pile, you may trash a card from your hand.
  • CharmCharm.jpg: If this is the next card you've bought this turn, you may also gain a differently named card with the same cost.
  • TaxTax.jpg: Take the D from its pile.
  • BasilicaBasilica.jpg: If you have $2 or more left, take 2VP from here.
  • ColonnadeColonnade.jpg: If it's an Action, and you have a copy of it in play, take 2VP from here.
  • Defiled ShrineDefiled Shrine.jpg: If it's CurseCurse.jpg, take the VP from this.

When you buy this card:

  • MintMint.jpg: Trash all Treasures you have in play.
  • Noble BrigandNoble Brigand.jpg: Each other player reveals the top 2 cards of their deck, trashes a revealed SilverSilver.jpg or GoldGold.jpg you choose, and discards the rest. If they didn’t reveal a Treasure, they gain a CopperCopper.jpg. You gain the trashed cards.
  • FarmlandFarmland.jpg: Trash a card from your hand. Gain a card costing exactly $2 more than the trashed card.
  • StonemasonStonemason.jpg: You may overpay for this. If you do, gain 2 Action cards each costing the amount you overpaid.
  • DoctorDoctor.jpg: You may overpay for this. For each $1 you overpaid, look at the top card of your deck; trash it, discard it, or put it back.
  • MasterpieceMasterpiece.jpg: You may overpay for this. If you do, gain a SilverSilver.jpg per $1 you overpaid.
  • HeraldHerald.jpg: You may overpay for this. For each $1 you overpaid, look through your discard pile and put a card from it on top of your deck.
  • MessengerMessenger.jpg: If this is your first buy in a turn, gain a card costing up to $4, and each other player gains a copy of it.
  • PortPort.jpg: Gain another Port.
  • ForumForum.jpg: +1 Buy.
  • Animal FairAnimal Fair.jpg: Instead of paying this card's cost, you may trash an Action card from your hand.

Events have on-buy effects by default, and are not listed separately here.

Gaining

When you would gain

When you would gain a card:

  • PossessionPossession.jpg: The player to your right gains it instead.
  • TraderTrader.jpg: You may reveal this from your hand. If you do, instead, gain a SilverSilver.jpg.

When you would gain this:

  • Nomad CampNomad Camp.jpg: Gain this onto your deck (instead of to your discard pile).
  • GuardianGuardian.jpg: Gain this to your hand (instead of to your discard pile).
  • Ghost TownGhost Town.jpg: Gain this to your hand (instead of to your discard pile).
  • Night WatchmanNight Watchman.jpg: Gain this to your hand (instead of to your discard pile).
  • Den of SinDen of Sin.jpg: Gain this to your hand (instead of to your discard pile).

When you gain

When you gain any card:

  • Trade RouteTrade Route.jpg: Move the pile's Trade Route token to the Trade Route mat.
  • WatchtowerWatchtower.jpg: You may reveal this from your hand to either trash that card, or put it on top of your deck.
  • Royal SealRoyal Seal.jpg: You may put that card on top of your deck.
  • DuplicateDuplicate.jpg: If the gained card costs up to $6, you may call this, to gain a copy of that card.
  • Travelling FairTravelling Fair.jpg: You may put that card on top of your deck.
  • LabyrinthLabyrinth.jpg: If it's the 2nd card you've gained this turn, take 2VP from here.
  • ChangelingChangeling.jpg: If the gained card costs $3 or more, you may exchange it for a Changeling.
  • Cargo ShipCargo Ship.jpg: You may set it aside face up (on this).
  • Exile: You may discard discard all other copies of the gained card from here.
  • SleighSleigh.jpg: You may discard this to put that card into your hand or onto your deck.
  • SheepdogSheepdog.jpg: You may play this from your hand.
  • FalconerFalconer.jpg: If it has 2 or more types (Action, Attack, etc.), you may play this form your hand.
  • LiveryLivery.jpg: If it costs $4 or more, gain a HorseHorse.jpg.
  • Way of the SealWay of the Seal.jpg: You may put that card onto your deck.

When you gain an Action card:

When you gain a Treasure card:

When you gain a Victory card:

When you gain this:

'When you gain another specific card:

  • DuchessDuchess.jpg: If the gained card is a DuchyDuchy.jpg, you may gain a Duchess.
  • Fool's GoldFool's Gold.jpg: If the gained card is a ProvinceProvince.jpg, another player may trash this from their hand to gain a GoldGold.jpg onto their deck.
  • Mountain PassMountain Pass.jpg: If the gained card is the first ProvinceProvince.jpg gained this game, after this turn, each player bids once, up to 40D, ending with you. High bidder gets +8VP and takes the D they bid.

When another player gains

When another player gains a Victory card

""When another player gains any card""

  • Fool's GoldFool's Gold.jpg: If the gained card is a ProvinceProvince.jpg, you may trash this from your hand to gain a GoldGold.jpg onto your deck.
  • FalconerFalconer.jpg: If it has 2 or more types (Action, Attack, etc.), you may play this from your hand.
  • InvestInvest.jpg: If you Invested in a copy of that card, and that card is still in Exile, +2 Cards.

Trashing

When you trash

When you trash any card:

  • TombTomb.jpg: +1VP.
  • PriestPriest.jpg: +$2.
  • SewersSewers.jpg: If it wasn't with this, you may trash a card from your hand.

When you trash one of your cards:

When you trash this:

Turn phases

At the start of your Buy phase

At the end of your Buy phase

At the start of Clean-up

  • EncampmentEncampment.jpg: If this is set aside, return it to the Supply.
  • ImproveImprove.jpg: You may trash an Action card you would discard from play this turn, to gain a card costing exactly $1 more than it.
  • Walled VillageWalled Village.jpg: If you have this and no more than one other Action card in play, you may put this on top of your deck.

Discarding from play

When you discard this from play:

"When you discard an Action card from play:

  • SchemeScheme.jpg: If it is the chosen card, put it on your deck.
  • PrincePrince.jpg: If it was played by Prince this turn, set it aside again.

When you discard another card from play:

When you would draw your new hand

  • OutpostOutpost.jpg: Only draw 3 cards (instead of 5).

When you draw your new hand

These must take place after OutpostOutpost.jpg's effect, as they draw cards in addition to the 3 Outpost tells you to draw.

At the end of your turn

  • PossessionPossession.jpg: Return the set-aside cards to your discard pile.
  • SaveSave.jpg: Put the set-aside card into your hand.
  • BathsBaths.jpg: If you haven't gained any cards this turn, take 2VP from here.

At the end of this turn

After this turn

These happen after checking for the end of the game.

  • DonateDonate.jpg: Put all cards from your deck and discard pile into your hand, trash any number, shuffle your hand into your deck, then draw 5 cards.
  • Mountain PassMountain Pass.jpg: If you gained the first ProvinceProvince.jpg this turn, each player bids once, up to 40D, ending with you. High bidder gets +8VP and takes the D they bid.

Extra turns happen after DonateDonate.jpg and Mountain PassMountain Pass.jpg.

  • OutpostOutpost.jpg: Take an extra turn.
  • PossessionPossession.jpg: The player to your left takes an extra turn, during which you can see all cards they can and make all decisions for them. Any cards or D they would gain on that turn, you gain instead, and any cards of theirs that are trashed are set aside and put in their discard pile at end of turn.
  • MissionMission.jpg: Take another turn, during which which you can't buy cards.
  • Seize the DaySeize the Day.jpg: Take an extra turn.

Miscellaneous

When you would make any decision

  • PossessionPossession.jpg: The player to your right makes the decision for you.

When you discard this other than during a Clean-up phase

When you shuffle

  • Star ChartStar Chart.jpg: You may pick one of the cards to go on top.

When you shuffle this

  • StashStash.jpg: You may look through your remaining deck, and may put this anywhere in the shuffled cards.

When you would earn +$

When you would draw a card

When scoring

A number of Landmarks have effects at this time, and are not listed separately here.

When you reveal this

After the game ends

  • FleetFleet.jpg: There is an extra round of turns just for players with this.

Persistent effects

The cards listed below have effects that persist over some extended period of time, rather than being resolved at a specific, unique point in time. Many of them have the effect of setting up a trigger for a punctual event as listed above, which can be triggered any number of times as long as whatever factor conditions the persistent effect remains active. Others cause more general changes to gameplay while they obtain, such as changing the costs or other characteristics of cards.

While cards are in play

While this is in play:

While something else is in play:

Turns

During your turns

  • InheritanceInheritance.jpg: EstateEstate.jpgs are also Actions with "Play the card with your Estate token, leaving it there."
  • CapitalismCapitalism.jpg: Actions with +$ amounts in their text are also Treasures.
  • CanalCanal.jpg: Cards cost $1 less}.
  • FishermanFisherman.jpg: If your discard pile is empty, this costs $3 less.
  • DestrierDestrier.jpg: This costs $1 less for each card you've gained this turn.
  • WayfarerWayfarer.jpg: This has the same cost as the last other card gained this turn, if any.

During your Buy phase

For the rest of this turn

For this entire turn

  • PossessionPossession.jpg: The player to your left takes an extra turn, during which you can see all cards they can and make all decisions for them. Any cards or D they would gain on that turn, you gain instead, and any cards of theirs that are trashed are set aside and put in their discard pile at end of turn.
  • MissionMission.jpg: You can't buy cards.

Until your next turn

  • Haunted WoodsHaunted Woods.jpg: When any other player buys a card, they puts their hand on top of their deck in any order.
  • Swamp HagSwamp Hag.jpg: When any other player buys a card, they gain a CurseCurse.jpg.
  • EnchantressEnchantress.jpg: The first time each other player plays an Action card on their turn, they get +1 Card and +1 Action instead of following its instructions.
  • GuardianGuardian.jpg: When another player plays an Attack card, it doesn't affect you.
  • GatekeeperGatekeeper.jpg: When another player gains an Action or Treasure card they don't have an Exiled copy of, they Exile it.

Longer

While your token is on a supply pile

While a card is in Exile

  • InvestInvest.jpg: When another player gains or Invests in a copy of it, +2 Cards.

For the rest of the game

  • EmbargoEmbargo.jpg: When anyone buys a card from the pile the Embargo token was put on, they gain a CurseCurse.jpg card.
    • This in principle could also be considered a "while a token is on a Supply pile" effect; but, unlike the tokens listed above, it's not possible to move an Embargo token off a Supply pile once placed.
  • HirelingHireling.jpg: At the start of each of your turns, +1 Card.
  • ChampionChampion.jpg: When another player plays an Attack, it doesn't affect you, and when you play an Action, +1 Action.
  • PrincePrince.jpg: At the start of each of your turns, play the set-aside Action if it has successfully been set aside each turn since you played Prince.

Several Landmarks have persistent effects that last for the entire game. They are not listed separately here.

Deck archetypes Big MoneyComboEngineRushSlog
Strategic concepts CollisionCounterCyclingDeadDuchy dancingEndgameGreeningMegaturnMirrorOpeningOpportunity costPenultimate Province RulePayloadPinPiledrivingReshuffleSilver testStop cardSplit advantageStrictly betterSynergyTerminalityThree-pile endingTurn advantageVictory pointVillage idiot
Rules Blue dog ruleCostDeckGameplayMaterialsNo Visiting ruleStop-Moving rule (previously Lose Track rule) • Supply (Kingdom) • Triggered effectsTurn
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