Greetings fellow Methuselahs
How many vampires are there in this world? Some scholarly types suggest 1 per 100 000 mortals, which would mean that about 10 would be skulking around my city, including my humble self. LIES! Last I counted there were 30 active Methuselahs here, and more and more turn up every Wednesday for our weekly social games. And those are the Methuselahs, the ancient ones! Just imagine how many minions they have?! 1 per 100 000 mortals, my ass …
FOUR NEW PRECONS AND ANTHOLOGY I NOW IN STORES
It is February 2019, and for the first time since February 2010, a set of new starter decks is available for purchase in game stores in Santiago, Sydney, Johannesburg, Milan, Helsinki – throughout the world!
There have been sealed deck release events in many of these places, actually too many to keep track of, because not many of them are put into the VEKN event calendar. But many games have been played, and many players had great fun.
All this feels like a great reward for many of us that have worked as volunteers for the last nine years, struggling to keep the Eternal Struggle eternal. Thanks for all such efforts, and thanks to you that turn up to play VTES events!
OFFICIAL CARD CHANGES
Rules Director Vincent Ripoll recently posted the following card changes, concerning cards reprinted in the February 2019 pre-constructed decks:
• Perfectionist: Gaining blood is now optional.
• Trap: Is now put into play with counters to track the number of presses it can provide.
• Powerbase: Madrid: Adding the counter is now optional.
• Rack, The: Adding the blood is now optional.
• Embrace, The: Inherits the Sire's sect.
The changes are effective in tournament play on March 18th, 2019.
Do you have rules questions? Ask in the VEKN forum or at Vampire: Elder Kindred Network on Facebook.
NEXT GRAND PRIX TOURNAMENT: BRNO, CZECH REPUBLIC MARCH 16TH
This month the Czech VTES community welcomes you to the next VEG tournament. The venue is Black Oil, Kotlářská 51a in Brno and games start at 15:00. Remember that all VEG players this year get the awesome playmat depictured above, courtesy of Ultrapro.
More information at the Facebook event VEG Czech Republic and in the VEKN event calendar.
REFLECTIONS AND RULEMONGERING
Last month we promoted Bindusara´s Jyhad Diary, an Australian blog that gives you “the oral history of VTES” by offering very readworthy interviews. This month we have to do it again, because these Kindred archeologists recently visited one of the deepest crypts and pulled the stake out of none other than L. Scott Johnson, maybe more known as LSJ. He was the lead designer of VTES 2000-2010. A real must-read: LSJ, reflections and rulemongering
BLACK CHANTRY SUMMARY: FEBRUARY 2019
• As mentioned above, February 16th was the big day for Black Chantry this month, with five new VTES products both on store shelves all over the world and available on Drivethrucards.com.
• Sadly, there also had to be an announcement on a production error. A serious stain on the protocol, but hopefully forgiveable in the long run. All future printings, including the new print runs of the February releases, will have the correct corners.
• VTES designers Ben Peal and Mike Nudd have just completed a first draft of the next cards for playtesters to test. It is very exciting stuff! Do you and your playgroup want to playtest? Send an application to playtest coordinator Darby Keeney as described in this post.
• A very special surprise product will be announced in March. Watch out for that!
• Currently ten Black Chantry products are available through Drivethrucards.com and other stores:
- Lost Kindred bundle
- Keepers of Tradition Reprint Bundle 1
- Keepers of Tradition Reprint Bundle 2
- Heirs of the Blood Reprint Bundle 1
- Heirs of the Blood Reprint Bundle 2
- Den of Fiends Preconstructed Deck
- Libertine Ball Preconstructed Deck
- Pact with Nephandi Preconstructed Deck
- Parliament of Shadows Preconstructed Deck
- Anthology I bundle
ARTIST IN FOCUS: JAVIER SANTOS
This month we have the great privilege to talk to Javier Santos. He has produced many pieces of art for VTES, but unlike most of our previous interviewed artists, he is not primarily into crypt card portraits. Instead he has made art that’s much about action, violence and horror – which of course is very needed in a game that is much about action, violence and horror ...
Hello Javier. You have made VTES art for a number of sets now, but I´m not sure our players know a lot about you. What is your background?
- Firstly, I want to introduce myself. I was born in Ávila, Spain, in 1983, but I have always lived in Madrid. Since I was a child, I have always loved manga, anime, computers and video games. I studied a Computer Science degree but, after attending an art course of design in Madrid, I began my career as a concept artist. Nowadays I am a freelancer concept artist and illustrator working in many interesting projects.
I have always loved drawing and I have considered myself a very creative and inspired person, although I hadn't developed any special interest in being an artist until I attended an art course. From that moment I started to learn the fundamentals to level-up my drawing and painting skills. Finally, and with the boom of the Internet, I was able to get into the industry, by contacting some clients and starting my career as a concept artist.
What kind of motives do you generally prefer?
- I really like sci-fi and dark themes. For that reason, I find VTES art very close to my preferences on colour palette and mood choices. Movies like “Blade Runner”, “Ghost in the Shell” and “Akira” are my greatest inspirations.
What artistical techniques do you prefer? Is it all digital?
- Yes, basically it is all digital nowadays. However, I am still using the paper and pen for quick sketches, rough concepts or ideas.
Most of your art seem to have elements of photos or are done in a photo-realistic style. Do you work with models and photos?
- I usually start by drawing some thumbnails to find out some cool shapes and compositions. In this early step, I am not looking at any references or putting any efforts into details. After I have decided the final thumbnail to proceed with, I start blocking all the colours and basic shapes while looking for some references at the same time. Next, I start fixing some values, perspective issues, lighting, etc. Sometimes, I use 3D tools to help me out on this step, since it is a 50% of the illustration. If the perspective or light are badly implemented, the final image will look weird. Finally, I start adding the last details with the use of some textures and photos to make it more realistic and reinforce the overall composition.
You have done VTES, but also other games and other places. What work are you most proud of so far?
- I think VTES is one of my biggest contributions, at least it is the longest so far. I have seen my evolution over the period of time I have worked with VTES, and it is very clear my style has changed a lot. I have no best piece of art at all, I think all of them own a lot of sentiments and meanings to myself.
Thanks for these answers Javier. Make sure to check out his site Javisart.com and follow him in various social media. And don´t miss our previous artist interviews, with Ken Meyer Jr, Carmen Cornet, Noora Hirvonen, Riccardo Fabiani, Heather Kreiter and Mark Kelly - many more will follow!
March 2: Crónicas del Califa IV: Huele a primavera - Córdoba, Andalucía, Spain
March 2: Aplocalypse VI - Bailleau-le-Pin, France
March 2: Algeciras Pachanging I - Algeciras, Spain
March 10: Last Round V - Reus, Catalunya, Spain
March 10: Visit from the Capuchin - Heath, United States
March 16: Italian National Championship 2019 - Brescia, Italy
March 16: Bart Jansen - Utrecht, Netherlands
March 17: VEG Brno - Brno, Czech Republic
March 23: Scourge of Magdeburg 2019 - Magdeburg, Germany
March 23: Ile St Denis Watchtower March 2018 - L ile St Denis, France
March 23: Praxis Seizure: Moss - Moss, Østfold, Norway
March 24: Antediluvian Awakening (National Championship México) - Ciudad de México, Mexico
March 24: Den of Friends - Palma de Mallorca, Spain
March 30: Praxis Seizure: Santiago - Santiago, Chile
For more information on upcoming events see the V:EKN Event Calendar.
You can contact the V:EKN Inner Circle members using contact forms at V:EKN.net. Also follow the V:EKN Facebook group, the official V:TES Facebook page Vampire: The Eternal Struggle and the official V:EKN Twitter account @VEKN_VTES
“Dare to feel, take the chance, make the deal. Being an island, shying from trying - seems the easy way, such an easy way. But there's no future without tears.”