file TWD - Portuguese National Championship 2011

13 Jan 2012 03:43 #20791 by Brum
Date: 18-12-2011
Location: Myrdinn's Magic, Lisbon
Number of Players: 12
Winning Player: Tiago Brum

Deckname: Ventrue LOL Firm or Cold From Fever
Author: Tiago Brum
Description: Built this Firm from the works of Mr. Guido Canciani, Mr. Sergio Garcia, my own past enterprises and the Vignesque tap and bleed I took to Örebro.
Play the table as it is, but try to build and have 3 Vampires before the First Tradition: Masquerade.
If you are in a table with non-Imbued ally decks, steal a couple of them before the First Tradition. Regardless what they are, you are going to need them once First Tradition hits.
If there is Strong Opposition(tm), oust them first (even before they do something bad to you). Parity back part of the pool his/her Predator got.
For more, go to www.vekn.net and look for this report.

Vampire (12) [Min: 19 Max: 31 Avg: 6,17]
1 Epikasta Rigatos cel AUS DOM PRE 8 Camarilla Prince of New York
1 Graham Gottesman obf pre tha DOM FOR 7 Camarilla Prince of Miami.
2 Lodin (Olaf Holte) aus pro DOM FOR PRE 8 Camarilla Prince of Chicago
2 Mustafa, The Heir cel dom FOR PRE 6 Camarilla Prince of Istanbul
1 Reginald Moore PRE 4 Camarilla primogen
1 Tara cel POT PRE 6 Camarilla Prince of San Diego.
1 Victor Donaldson for pre DOM 6 Camarilla Prince of Atlanta
3 Victor Pelletier cel dom for PRE 5 Camarilla

/* I think this is the best Law Firm crypt out there.
Yes. This is built for 2nd turn Parity Shift.
Most games I play one more at most, but remember I use no Deflections. I figure this way I help the game go faster and I'm better ready for the one-on-one.*/

Library (71 cards):

Master (13)
2 Anarch Troublemaker
2 Dreams of the Sphinx
3 Information Highway
1 Papillon
2 Pentex(TM) Subversion
1 Ventrue Headquarters Ventrue
2 Vessel

/* European Stealth(tm). Make no mistake about it: Law Firms live on 1 stealth tops. Focused Combat, stable +1 intercept, Delaying Tactics, Direct Intervention and many other things destroy this deck.
If you're Pentexed, there's no way you'll break it. And using it can save your unlife.
Vessels on the other hand where not needed. I'll drop'em for a Coven and Uncoiling.
In fact the deck has 71 cards because I forgot to add Uncoiling. I was very lucky I didn't need it in the Final.
Next time I'll be sure to add that.*/

Action (13)
5 Entrancement Presence
6 Govern the Unaligned Dominate
2 Mind Numb Presence

/* Fun fact: 8 games with this deck. Only 2 Superior Governs.
Info Highway is also for a panic Govern down 3 pool, but I never really needed to do that. */

Ally (1)
1 Carlton Van Wyk (Hunter)

/*Because I can and because it's the only non-Imbued ally that has built in Intercept to stop me from contracting him over to my Firm.
And he stops my conservative legal actions. Damn liberal.*/

Political Action (14)
1 Ancilla Empowerment
3 First Tradition: The Masquerade
4 Kine Resources Contested
6 Parity Shift

/*All your eyes go for the Parity Shifts, when it's the First Tradition: Masquerade that is truly broken.
This card collapses tables. Period.
Sure, the Shifts are nice. But they didn't give me the win.
First Tradition + (Kine or tap-n-bleed) did.*/

Action Modifier (18)
2 Awe Presence
3 Change of Target
2 Daring the Dawn Fortitude
1 Day Operation Fortitude
6 Freak Drive Fortitude
4 Voter Captivation Presence

/* With enough Entrancements, Bleed and Political Actions, Majesty is always preferable to Force of Personality.
One or two might not hurt, but my favorite quote of one of the Esbjörnsson Brothers is: "With small and focused decks you get what you need, not what you want". */

Reaction (4)
4 Second Tradition: Domain

/*Maybe one more would be nice.
I'm split between adding one First or one Second.
*/

Combat (8)
8 Majesty Presence



Report itself:

Ventrue is the clan I've played the most.

This one runs much like the Vignes deck in the part that you build and build until you lounge.
Lots of things destroy this deck, so you might need to oust another player first, other than your Prey, in order to survive and have a chance.
Parity Shift mitigates the problem of giving someone else a VP.
Once you get momentum going, the lounge is usually on the whole table.
First Tradition: Masquerade is so damn powerful. I really was surprised when I started testing this deck. I was all like "Dear, sweet Law of Kindred, where were you all this time?"
It's like a loaded Smiling Jack that you don't need to defend.
And it is sooo unfair to the other players.
You have Kine Resources Contested, Voter Captivation, 2nd Tradition + Majesty and Govern + Daring the Dawn. Freak Drive and Majesty for multi action. And many times vote lock.
Combat rushers and other politics will simply pass.
Everyone else will either pay to untap or pass.
Damned if you play, damned if you don't.
Oh and multiple 1st Traditions is just hilarious (hence LOL Firm).


Preparations for the Tournament:
I was counting on ANI combat, Shamblers, Imbued, Weenie CEL combat, Power Bleed and maybe AUS wall, Rachel Brandywine, POT combat or mono DEM.
I also tried to think about the more experienced players, their playstyle, what they would bring to the tournament and specially the Final.
For the first time ever some of us planed the weekend to spend Saturday at Eliseu's place and playtest all day.
Besides playtesting our decks, we used some of the above stated staple decks and we practiced table seating in a Final on most games (a d20 was used to simulate seed, each of us declared what deck we used and why we would sit the way we did).
I feel this is something people don't have much experience and it is a good idea to practice.
We played all Saturday up until 4 am on the day of the Tournament.

BTW: Tireless testing VS Swedish Power Naps(tm) is an interesting discussion.
My take on this is: you are going to be tired in a Final, regardless of how much you sleep the previous day.
For non experienced players, the more you test -> the more automatized you responses are to certain situations. Experienced players are already programed this way, so they can afford to sleep (although if you spend your free time in an EC sleeping and not looking at local meta, you might be in trouble too). ;)
Young players have the huge disadvantage that most this are new and they need to pay allot of attention to each situation, so sleeping should be good.
For me, when the tiredness hits it will never go beyond a certain point and I'm better suited to make split second decisions with more practice.
Also, when one's tired, there's less blood going to the Prefrontal lobe in the brain, therefore one becomes more logical and less emotional.


The Tournament itself:
Rounds 1 and 3 have little story for me.
Firstly, I was in a table with 2 imbued that didn't contest crypts and vomited the Gehenna Events in quick succession.
My Prey was stealth politics and I was trying to help him go for the oust, but his game sucked and well... I'm a Ventrue Law Firm with 4 to 8 minions next to me all with +1 intercept.
No, Force of Personality would not help because they were smart and never got at ousting distance. And my predator was rush Imbued who could cancel my Majesties.

Second Round:
Predator was Eduardo (Drain) with Blood Bros from Torrence. Potence Rush combat. Yay!
My Ally was André and his version of Nana and Aksynia.
My Prey was Eliseu with his Anarch Palla Grande.
I really don't remember if Eliseu did much on this table. I do remember trying to convince André to rush Eduardo's Blood Brothers, but he must of gone backwards instead because Eliseu was fast at ousting distance.
I played First Tradition under the assumption that Eliseu could no play and André would bloat and go forward.
I had two reasons to want to duel with André: the deck doesn't have much intercept and I had Majesties for combats.
Eduardo passed all the turns of the First Tradition and during those turns we saw that André didn't draw Villein and didn't go forward.
I ousted Eliseu, stole André's Jake Washington (chump blocker for the first inevitable rush) and soon after that ousted André.
In the head's up Eduardo didn't draw rush and I was really lucky with that.
On the other had I didn't draw Political Action either and his constant bleeds were eating away my pool. One of then with Walk of Elvis really put me on the ropes.
Still it was a price I had to pay.
I think that in this duel we both did our best to win and it was really a matter of getting the cards we needed to finish the other off.
With more Political actions than his rush actions, I drew a Kine Resources Contested that ended the table.

Third Round is a blur in my mind.
I guess I didn't draw Majesties and died miserably to André's Nana ANI.
I used the rest of the time to scout the other tables, drink water and have coffee.

So, the Final:
Me ->
Helder (DOM THA bruise bleed group 3/4) ->
Igor (Nephandus Art Scam) ->
Eliseu (Anarch Palla Grande) ->
Melkor (Imbued Rush)

Igor started by asking Melkor if he had Unmasking or Slow Withering in hand. I thought "oh boy, this is gonna be good."
Igor influenced a weenie !Toreador and played Unmasking, Eliseu put pool on the uncontrolled region, Malkor got an Imbued and played Slow Withering.
I started arguing that both ally decks where very synergistic. I was bottom seed, so I really had to go for the long run: 3 vps. My problem was the Unmasking. Most of my actions are at +1 stealth and I couldn't do anything while the Gehenna events where on the table.
I got Victor Pelletier as Justicar and asked Melkor if he would block a Parity Shift if he wasn't the target.
He probably assumed I would do it on my Prey, so he said no block. I found it odd that he didn't want to block. I targeted Igor and gave the pool to me.
Obviously Igor didn't like it one bit.
I transferred Lodin (combat special might come in handy against Predator) and didn't do much for a couple of turns.
My Prey got Muhsin Samir and Alejandro Aguirre, Igor got António Derlette, 2 Nephandus and made a couple of Art Scams.
Eliseu got Sheila and Jost, Melkor got 2 or 3 Imbued.
So this was 3 or 4 turns into the game and I declare that the Ally decks are really screwing the other players over. I try to reason with Eliseu that the strength of his deck is the steady bleed with stealth and the other cards that are used at Superior. I was completely surprised when Eliseu drops a weapon of mass destruction called Fourth Cycle.
Imbued clean of Convictions, one of Igor's vampires in torpor and all the Gehennas burned.
He passes, Melkor puts Second Sight on his humans and I play.
I look at my two Entracements in hand and go for the Nephandus. My reason was this: in the long term the Nephandus is the best ally and if push came to shove, my Prey's THA combat would destroy them anyway, so that wouldn't make any real difference for Igor.
Also I was planning for the 1st First Tradition and with that, my Prey's demise. Melkor was not ousted yet, so I decided to give Eliseu a little incentive too.
Igor became really upset because Melkor's guys didn't have React with Conviction. My decision was final and that was it.
My Prey used all the wakes to block my bleeds, but didn't do much for the politics, so without intercept left or right (Melkor had to worry about Eliseu), I took the Prey's VP and got Igor dead in the water.
Then I made a mistake that could have cost me the Win: I discarded both Daring the Dawns during the last turns.
Eliseu ousted Melkor and there where 3 of us.
When I went for the double kill with Ancilla Empowerment, Eliseu blocked.
I Majestied and since I was controlling 4 Vampires, a Carlton van Wyk and 2 Nephandus, I swarm bled Igor to death.
And the last duel began. Eliseu was defending his title since he's the 2010 Champion.
1st Tradition was on the Table and it was a contest to see who would lower his opponent's Pool enough for him to be forced to pass.
Eliseu payed to play and damaged me down to 4 or 5 pool.
I used Anarch Troublemaker that was standing there for along time and ousted Eliseu with bleed and politics, the details of witch I regret I don't remember.
Besides the 7 minions, I had Ventrue Headquarters, Dreams of the Sphinx and Anarch Troublemaker. Eliseu had Sheila, Jost, Lolita, Mercy and maybe someone else.
My Ready Region was full of cards and Eliseu overlook the Troublemaker.
Had I not discarded the Daring the Dawns it wouldn't matter anyway, but this one went for me.


I remembered the wise words of Orian Gissler when I complained to him I went to Finals but never won them.
"Always start the Final with a plan. Know the seeds and the decks.
Sit according to the plan and try to stick to the plan as much as possible".

I had no chance on the choosing where to sit part.
This time, everything else went ok. ;)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Forhead, Mephistopheles, Joscha, Hakuron, Drain

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13 Jan 2012 06:41 #20797 by Mephistopheles
Thank you for this very nice report Tiago! Now I really feel like removing the dust from my First Traditions and build my own version. If you don't mind I'd like to play this deck and just tweak it here and there so it fits my personal play style.

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13 Jan 2012 11:18 #20826 by Brum
Thanks.
I would love to see what you make of this, as I'm going to continue to use and tweak this deck too.

Cheers!
Tiago Brum,
Portuguese NC^2. B)

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13 Jan 2012 11:52 - 13 Jan 2012 11:53 #20827 by extrala
Congrats, Tiago and thanks for the extensive report. Although I really like the in-line comments as such, they make the decklist harder to read (or get an overview), therefore:

Deck Name: Portuguese National Championship 2011: Ventrue LOL Firm or Cold From Fever
Author: Tiago Brum

Crypt (Capacity min=4 max=8 avg=6.17; 12 cards)
==================================================

1x Epikasta Rigatos 8 cel AUS DOM PRE Toreador:4
1x Graham Gottesman 7 obf pre tha DOM FOR Ventrue:5
2x Lodin (Olaf Holte) 8 aus pro DOM FOR PRE Ventrue:5
2x Mustafa, The Heir 6 cel dom FOR PRE Ventrue:4
1x Reginald Moore 4 PRE Brujah:4
1x Tara 6 cel POT PRE Brujah:5
1x Victor Donaldson 6 for pre DOM Ventrue:5
3x Victor Pelletier 5 cel dom for PRE Ventrue:4

Library (71 cards)
=====================

Master (13 cards)
2x Anarch Troublemaker
2x Dreams of the Sphinx
3x Information Highway
1x Papillon
2x Pentex(TM) Subversion
1x Ventrue Headquarters
2x Vessel

Action (13 cards)
5x Entrancement
6x Govern the Unaligned
2x Mind Numb

Political Action (14 cards)
1x Ancilla Empowerment
3x First Tradition: The Masquerade
4x Kine Resources Contested
6x Parity Shift

Ally (1 cards)
1x Carlton Van Wyk (Hunter)

Action Modifier (18 cards)
2x Awe
3x Change of Target
2x Daring the Dawn
1x Day Operation
6x Freak Drive
4x Voter Captivation

Reaction (4 cards)
4x Second Tradition: Domain

Combat (8 cards)
8x Majesty

Created with Secret Library v0.9.3. (Jan 13, 2012 14:48:00)
Last edit: 13 Jan 2012 11:53 by extrala.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Brum

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13 Jan 2012 12:46 #20831 by Forhead
Thank you Tiago! And congratualtions on the win! I really enjoyed the report. The deck seems really solid, first tradition is something I'll sitt down right now and build something with. That card is sick!

Isak Esbjörnsson Bjärmark
The following user(s) said Thank You: Brum

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13 Jan 2012 16:33 - 13 Jan 2012 16:38 #20843 by Drain

Brum wrote: Second Round:
Predator was Eduardo (Drain) with Blood Bros from Torrence. Potence Rush combat. Yay!
My Ally was André and his version of Nana and Aksynia.
My Prey was Eliseu with his Anarch Palla Grande.


Ugh, you had to in-depth with this one. A table best forgotten.

Brum wrote: I played First Tradition under the assumption that Eliseu could no play and André would bloat and go forward.
I had two reasons to want to duel with André: the deck doesn't have much intercept and I had Majesties for combats.
Eduardo passed all the turns of the First Tradition and during those turns we saw that André didn't draw Villein and didn't go forward.
I ousted Eliseu, stole André's Jake Washington (chump blocker for the first inevitable rush) and soon after that ousted André.


Correction: you played two chained First Traditions, conditioning the entire game for the first few turns. I do believe Eliseu was a complete goner as soon as we sat down to play, but what followed is where it got silly:

Me and André (my predator) were already on talking terms, having agreed that we would be better off with the first tradition deck off the table. His animalism would erode your majesties and my bleeds for one would slowly but surely increase the pressure. My hand was already thoroughly jammed on red cards by this point and I can't even tell for sure if I torpored a minion at all during this game.

Now, the kicker: André, your then-grandprey, had Nana Buruku with Villein, 3 blood and Bahari counter, Aksynia Daclau on full blood and Gustaphe Brunelle on full blood. The turn before you ousted your prey he discards the second Villein he did draw. I question him about this, to which he replies: "oh, there's plenty more where that came from, the deck's packed with them". The turn procedes normally around the table, with you ousting Eliseu and getting André down to some 6-odd pool.

As his new turn comes around he cycles some Master cards and nervously declares that he hasn't a Villein in hand. The End.

Brum wrote: In the head's up Eduardo didn't draw rush and I was really lucky with that.
On the other had I didn't draw Political Action either and his constant bleeds were eating away my pool. One of then with Walk of Elvis really put me on the ropes.
Still it was a price I had to pay.
I think that in this duel we both did our best to win and it was really a matter of getting the cards we needed to finish the other off.
With more Political actions than his rush actions, I drew a Kine Resources Contested that ended the table.


It wouldn't have mattered, as I told you then. Even if the next rush-enabler had not been buried some 8 cards deep I still didn't have any Immortal Grapple on hand to go with it. After André's misplay it was all yours to take home. ;)


You did play exceedingly well in the finals and congratulations are certainly in order. Thanks for the report.


Drain
Last edit: 13 Jan 2012 16:38 by Drain.
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