Organized Resistance - Martín de Diego Sábada
"Organized Resistance" by Martín de Diego Sábada from the Brujah Fifth Edition preconstructed deck.

Greetings fellow Methuselahs,

September 2021 VTES Tournaments
THE RETURN OF LIVE UNDEAD TOURNAMENTS

It is still crucial that any VEKN events are organized in line with local health regulations, but during September some countries have loosed their restrictions and a number of major tournaments were held. It is hard to ask of the organizers to file thorough tournament reports to share in these newsletters, and the community is happy with the events being run appropriately and a tournament winning deck eventually ending up in the archive. We try to update you with more info on events in the future, but for now we settle for quick mentions of the champions here:

• North American Championship 2021: Congratulations Alex Romano! (Winning deck at VTES.net)

• Polish National Championship 2021: Congratulations Łukasz Ho Thanh! (Winning deck at VTES.net)

• Czech National Championship 2021: Congratulations Daniel Gargulák! (Final round video at Youtube)

• Danish National Championship 2021: Congratulations David Luhaäär!

• UK National Championship 2021: Congratulations Hugh Angseesing!



VTES Discord
VTES HAS A NEW OFFICIAL DISCORD SERVER!

The original announcement by Lionel Panhaleux:

“Exciting news! Today we are opening Black Chantry's Official V:TES Discord server! The plan is to make one big, centralized place where we all can get games going on our time zone easily and to unite the community in a single diverse environment where we all can learn and have fun playing V:TES. There are dedicated language channels, so you'll always be able to play games and discuss V:TES in your preferred language. We hope to see you there!”

https://discord.gg/cafUcrDP8k

The upcoming online World Championship will be held on this new server:

VTES Online Championship 2021


CAMPEONATO NACIONAL 2021 ALICANTE
THE SPANISH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP WILL BE MASSIVE!

Reports say that 90 players already have registered for the November 27 Spanish championship in San Vicente del Raspeig - VTES is hot in Spain! Possibly a lot of this extra early interest is because the organizers tempt with some special promo cards. Read more about this event (in Spanish) at it´s VEKN.net forum thread.



DECKS TO BEAT: SEPTEMBER

A retrospect by Rudolf Scholz

What is your favourite new card, be it art-wise or effect-wise? I like Aline Gädeke’s blue eyes, and cannot wait to bounce the first bleed with Bait and Switch. Yet again, ladies and gentlemen, it is time to look back: at the tournament winning decks with the most participants from September 2000, 2005, 2010 and 2015. Be prepared to meet Legacy of Pander, Darkness Within, Chameleon, and Kindred Spirits.
VTES Decks to beat SeptemberYear 2000
“Legacy of Pander” by Rob Treasure
Deck type: Pander vote
English NC 2000, GenCon UK 2000 – Manchester, England, GB – September 3 – 30 players

Notes by Rob: “The deck is still frighteningly effective, even after people have had several years to get to grips with it.”

Crypt (12)
1x Jost Werner   6 AUS PRE ani   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Lena Rowe   3 aus obf pre   Pander:2
1x Christine Boscacci   2 dom vic   Pander:2
1x Frederick the Weak   2 pre   Brujah antitribu:2
1x Gillian Krader   2 ani dem   Pander:2
1x Mitchell, The Headhunter   2 obt pot   Pander:2
1x Angela Decker   1 pre   Pander:2
1x Antoinette DuChamp   1 cel pre   Caitiff:2
1x Basil   1 obf   Pander:2
1x Huang, Blood Cultist   1 pro   Pander:2
1x March Halcyon   1 for   Pander:2
1x Royce   1 dom   Pander:2

Library (90)
1x Archon Investigation
1x Barrens, The
1x Direct Intervention
1x Dreams of the Sphinx
1x Effective Management
2x Elysium: The Arboretum
1x Heidelberg Castle, Germany
1x Humanitas
2x Information Highway
1x KRCG News Radio
1x Misdirection
3x Presence
1x Sudden Reversal
1x Tribute to the Master

1x Entrancement
4x Legal Manipulations

1x Deer Rifle
2x Leather Jacket

1x Tasha Morgan

3x Banishment
7x Consanguineous Boon
1x Conservative Agitation
1x Disputed Territory
2x Dramatic Upheaval
6x Kine Resources Contested
9x Legacy of Pander
1x Rumors of Gehenna

3x Awe
2x Bewitching Oration
2x Change of Target
2x Cryptic Rider
3x Forgotten Labyrinth

3x Dodge
4x Fake Out
8x Majesty

6x Wake with Evening's Freshness

2021 comments:
– Well, some things never change … Weenie swarm vote can be extremely dangerous if left alone. Why? Usually, you can start “doing things” by turn 2, very often this means you do them unnoticed by any minion => unblockable. Political actions which are undirected actions at +1 stealth many times are “unblockable” as well, since stealth-bleed decks or rush combat decks don’t include any intercept.
– The key card of a Pander vote deck is Legacy of Pander, a rare card of the Sabbat and Sabbat War sets (released in 1996 and 2000). Successful referendum puts the card in play, and it provides any non-titled Pander with 1 vote. There can be multiple copies in play but they don’t stack, and because of this you work with a few back-up plans to reach vote lock.
– This deck features the Presence based action modifiers Awe and Bewitching Oration. Because less than 50 percent of the vampires have Presence, some Master: Discipline cards are included. It obviously worked out, but nowadays you prefer to go for Crusade cards and Día de los Muertos. The latest trend is to add titled vampires like Korah or Arika. It is also possible and powerful to make the events Fall of the Camarilla and Fall of the Sabbat work.
– Note that until 2001, ANY ready vampire could be chosen as target for Banishment which made this political action a very powerful weapon in the hand of weenies. Elysium: The Arboretum allowed you to end ANY combat involving a vampire you control. And the VP-sniping political action Dramatic Upheaval got banned in 2005.
– I recommend taking a close look at Darby Keeney’s tournament winning deck “Tatu Signal, The Wake Effect”. It is a very pragmatic 61 card deck with a pure Pander crypt. I doubt if it makes sense trying to make the Presence angle work today, even though it is always nice to include Jost Werner, a special task force. ;-)

VTES Decks to beat SeptemberYear 2005
Untitled deck by Andrea Del Cont
Deck type: Midcap Lasombra stealth-bleed
Italian ECQ – Bologna, Italy  – September 18 – 55 players

Crypt (12)
3x Henri Lavenant   7 DOM OBT pot qui   Lasombra:3
3x Banjoko   5 DOM obt pot   Lasombra:3
2x Gratiano   8 DOM OBT obf pot  priscus  Lasombra:2
2x Tobias Smith   7 DOM OBT PRE pot   Lasombra:3
1x Guido Lucciano   5 OBT dom obf   Lasombra:2
1x Ignacio, The Black Priest   4 dom obt pot   Lasombra:2

Library (79)
2x Blood Doll
1x Direct Intervention
3x Dominion
1x Elysian Fields
1x Obtenebration
3x Path of Night, The
1x Regarhagan's Hold

1x Blooding
1x Dominate Kine
1x Far Mastery
6x Govern the Unaligned
1x Rampage
1x Sanguine Instruction

1x Carlton Van Wyk

1x Watchtower: Greatest Fall

3x Change of Target
2x Conditioning
3x Foreshadowing Destruction
3x Shadow Play
3x Shroud of Night
7x Tenebrous Form
5x Threats

6x Darkness Within
6x Oubliette

5x Deflection
2x Eyes of the Night
3x Forced Awakening
3x Redirection
3x Wake with Evening's Freshness

2021 comments:
– In last month’s Decks to beat article I talked about the struggles early Lasombra stealth-bleed decks endured. In 2002 and 2003, the Camarilla and Black Hand sets introduced a few group 3 midcaps of this clan with superior Dominate.
– Superior Dominate is so much stronger than basic Dominate. You can “Govern down”, and play Seduction on any vampire, Bonding for stealth and bounce bleeds with Deflection without locking the vampire.
– Yet this deck does not exploit that. It looks like Andrea preferred to “fight for beads”: He wants his vampires to play Obtenebration cards for free (3x Path of the Night), prefers Threats instead of Conditioning, makes use of Dominion and even includes Regarhagan’s Hold and Watchtower: Greatest Fall, both of them are unique appearances in the TWDA, kudos!
– It looks like Andrea had an idea about the tournament’s metagame: He included 12 combat cards and no Delaying Tactics, the latter usually is an auto-include in stealth-bleed decks. I would give up two combat cards for two Delaying Tactics. Forced Awakening should become On the Qui Vive. I prefer the master trifle Cadet, maybe two copies, above the action Blooding.
– I would increase the copies of Govern the Unaligned since it more or less is the only pool gain mechanism in this deck. Seduction would be more offensive than Change of Target.
– Regarding the fight for beads, I recommend reading the article “Blood, Pool and Grinding Beads” by Paul Jones.

VTES Decks to beat September
Year 2010
“Chameleon Snakes” by Mark Loughman
Deck type: Nakhthorheb Chameleon
NAC Last Chance Qualifier – New Orleans, Louisiana, US – September 24 – 34 players

Notes from Mark: “Credit where credit is due. I had built a Chameleon module into a Ayo-Anarch deck a while back, and as such was familiar with the mechanics of it, but Matt Wedge took it to a new level. He proposed a mono-Snake deck accelerated by Eternals of Sirius. I've spent the last 8 months learning to build and play 60 card decks, more in the style of Jay. I went Group 4 for this, because Nakhthorheb's inherent multi-acting is so strong. Thanks also to Darby for some tweaks in the Master mix. I would probably delete one of the support snakes in favor of a second Cagliostro … synergy between him and Nak is huge.”

Crypt (12)
5x Anarch Convert   1 -none-   Caitiff:ANY
4x Nakhthorheb   10 OBF PRE SER   Follower of Set:4
1x Porphyrion   9 CHI OBF PRE SER for   Follower of Set:5
1x Arnulf Jormungandrsson   8 OBF PRE SER aus cel   Follower of Set:5
1x Cagliostro, The Grand Copht   8 OBF PRE SER nec pot   Follower of Set:4

Library (60)
7x Eternals of Sirius, The
1x Ferraille
1x Giant's Blood
1x Golconda: Inner Peace
1x Heidelberg Castle, Germany
1x Monastery of Shadows
1x Secure Haven

6x Chameleon
2x Entrancement
1x Fee Stake: Boston
1x Fee Stake: Corte
1x Fee Stake: Los Angeles
2x Fee Stake: New York
1x Fee Stake: Perth
1x Fee Stake: Seattle
1x Form of Corruption
2x Legal Manipulations

3x Banishment
1x Firebrand
1x Kine Resources Contested
1x Reckless Agitation

1x Bewitching Oration
2x Cloak the Gathering
2x Elder Impersonation
1x Faceless Night
2x Forgotten Labyrinth
2x Into Thin Air
2x Perfect Paragon
4x Swallowed by the Night
4x Truth of a Thousand Lies
3x Voter Captivation

2021 comments:
– This is one of these combo decks you want to build with only 60 cards in order to make the combo work reliably. Speed cannot be underestimated when trying to make Chameleon work.
– As Mark described above, Nakhthorheb is a brilliant “chameleonist”: He can act twice per turn, e.g. play a Fee Stake and Chameleon, and he is a big capacity vampire. In addition he can be speed-influenced with The Eternals of Sirius.
– Banishment interacts nicely with Chameleon. Of course this deck encounters some or severe problems when surrounded by big capacity vampires.
– Options for changes and additions could be: Blithe Acceptance, Reformation (because of the interaction with Nakhthorheb) and Enkil Cog.

VTES Decks to beat SeptemberYear 2015
Untitled deck by Lucas Oliveira
Deck type: Malkavian stealth-bleed
Steely Tenacity, Brazilian CCQ – Fortaleza, Brazil – September 20 – 18 players

Crypt (12)
3x Morel   6 AUS DEM OBF   Malkavian:4
2x Gem Ghastly   6 DEM OBF aus   primogen  Malkavian:5
2x Hagar Stone   6 AUS DEM obf   Malkavian antitribu:5
1x Santaleous   9 AUS CEL DEM OBF   Malkavian:5
1x Bloody Mary   8 AUS DEM OBF pre   primogen  Malkavian:5
1x Lord Fianna   8 AUS DEM OBF cel pro   Malkavian:5
1x Drozodny   7 AUS DEM OBF pre   bishop   Malkavian antitribu:5
1x Bela   3 DEM ani obf pro   Malkavian:5

Library (89)
1x Dreams of the Sphinx
1x Elder Library
1x Giant's Blood
1x Pentex(TM) Subversion
1x Secure Haven
1x Sudden Reversal
3x Vessel
2x Wash

1x Bitter and Sweet Story, The

16x Kindred Spirits
1x Restructure

1x Muddled Vampire Hunter

8x Confusion
3x Deny
5x Elder Impersonation
9x Eyes of Chaos
4x Faceless Night
6x Lost in Crowds
3x Spying Mission
4x Swallowed by the Night

Combat (6)
6x No Trace

1x My Enemy's Enemy
3x On the Qui Vive
5x Telepathic Misdirection
2x Wake with Evening's Freshness

2021 comments:
– Dementation/Obfuscate stealth-bleed is a reliably strong weapon in VTES. It is important to realise that many group combinations offer you this choice. Here we have groups 4 and 5; you might want to compare it with the deck composed of groups 2 and 3 featured in April 2021 Decks to beat article.
– Most of the vampires have superior Obfuscate, thus you get the best out of the action modifiers and out of No Trace. In an Auspex-heavy environment, Hide the Mind would be a nice addition.
– Wake with Evening’s Freshness should be Eyes of Argus, and at least one copy of Delaying Tactics should be included. The rest is fine, even though some consider it an unnecessary risk to bleed for 4 (Kindred Spirits + Eyes of Chaos), because that is in Archon Investigation range. Good luck bleeding!

That’s it for this time. Thank you for reading!


 
Mexico Politics topVTES STRATEGIES: THE SUBTLETY OF POLITICS

Some thoughts from Mexico again – this time about a beloved game mechanic:

In Vampire: The Eternal Struggle, in addition to defeating your opponents through bleeding, there are other strategies to weaken the power and influence other Methuselahs weild in the game environment. One of the most effective strategies is undoubtedly the political one. In addition to being one of the aspects that is most closely linked to the roleplaying game that VTES is based on (Vampire: The Masquerade), in order to play politics, it is necessary to develop or perfect a series of skills that have to do with the social dynamics between players.

Playing politics in VTES represents actions that your minions carry out in the world by mobilizing vampire society as a whole, and for this you need vampires who represent that power in the game, which is achieved in various ways: holding a title within the sect to which they belong, using their disciplines, or through the support of powerful and influential allies who can tip the balance of power to one side or the other depending on your interests as a Methuselah. Politics is the essence of the Eternal Struggle among vampires.

The threads of politics can be subtly moved by making alliances with other players to gradually achieve your goals by offering deals or benefits for their help, controlling strategic places of power, or being the obvious power if controlling many titled vampires on the table. Things can be done either by deciding with an iron fist or by using your best negotiating skills to achieve your goals in each game.

Recommendations to play politics and not die trying:

1) Be patient. Building an empire takes time, so take small but firm steps to position yourself properly throughout the game.

2) Be blunt. When you carry out an action, have the resources necessary for your political actions to be effective, because otherwise you may be in for a nasty surprise.

3) Keep an eye on the development of the table. It is never necessary that, due to an oversight, an important action goes to waste. Check the votes on the table, who is also playing politics, who has the Edge, etc.

4) Keep a cool mind. When playing politics, you come to moments when your decisions affect the entire table (and those affected may not like the result). The outcome of your moves must lead you to victory.

And remember: VTES is a game. Sometimes playing politics leads you to situations in which emotions are overflowing, and your opponents may dislike the consequences of your actions very much. Stay focused on the game and wisely dispense favors and perks to win the support of the table, and when you're ready, play your political control stratagems decisively to emerge victorious in the Eternal Struggle!

Eduardo García Ayala, @LaloVtes

Do you also want to contribute to this newsletter? Please contact . Hope to hear from you!

 


 

Black Chantry logo

BLACK CHANTRY SUMMARY: SEPTEMBER 2021

This was a busy month! Some highlights:

• The next four preconstructed decks (Banu Haqim, Brujah, Gangrel and The Ministry) are at the printer. All cards and deck lists have been spoiled. The shipping date is the release date: November 1. So these new cards will be tournament legal on December 1!

• A new batch of Legacy Card Singles was made available at Drivethrucards, this time Ravnos and Chimerstry, some with errata. More are being prepared.

• All the cards in the 2021 Promo Pack have been spoiled and should have reached at least some organizers and stores.

• The Unleashed Kickstarter is still under delivery, but hopefully the last on the list will have their packages when they read this.

NAC 2021

• Black Chantry´s Ben Peal was the head organizer at the North American Championship and the Week of Nightmares at the Origins Game Fair in Columbus, Ohio. The attenance was low because of the pandemic, but 13 tournaments were played, so still a lot of VTES. Karl Schafer wrote a report about these events at KSG-cards.com.

• Soon all artwork for the Fall of London-themed mini expansion is in, so cards can be templated and proofed. Release: Early 2022.

• A new version of the First Blood packs is being prepared. Not all reprints, but with some new cards. Release: Early 2022.

VTES Fifth Edition

Black Chantry VTES products

• Currently these 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 (Also Spanish, French)
Libertine Ball Preconstructed Deck (Also Spanish, French)
Pact with Nephandi Preconstructed Deck (Also Spanish, French)
Parliament of Shadows Preconstructed Deck (Also Spanish, French)
Anthology I bundle
VTES Card Creator (Drivethrucards only)
25th Anniversary
First Blood: Malkavian (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Nosferatu (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Toreador (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Tremere (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Ventrue (Also Spanish, French)
VTES Legacy Card Singles (Drivethrucards only)
Promo Pack 1 (Drivethrucards only)
Promo Pack 2 (Event promos only)
VTES "Parity Shift" playmat
VTES card sleeves
Vampire: The Eternal Struggle Fifth Edition (Stores only)
Vampire: The Eternal Struggle Fifth Edition Latin (Drivethrucards only)
Fifth Edition: Malkavian (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Nosferatu (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Toreador (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Tremere (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Ventrue (Stores only)

Do you have opinions or questions for Black Chantry? Start a topic on the VEKN forum, or contact the company by e-mailFacebookInstagram or Twitter.

 


Sabbat: The Black Hand RECENT NEWS IN THE WORLD OF DARKNESS

The brand new "Sabbat: The Black Hand" for Vampire: The Masquerade Fifth Edition is written by Justin Achilli, Alan Alexander, Khaldoun Khelil, and Karim Muammar. It starts like this: "Here is the most important sentence in this book: The function of the Sabbat in Vampire: The Masquerade stories is to threaten the status quo. The presentation of the Sabbat for the Fifth Edition of Vampire is as antagonists. The Sword of Caine is undeniably a monstrous evil that even the Kindred fear, a sect of vampire supremacists who set aside the perspectives of the still-living, believing themselves to be more than mortals."

This sets the tone. It will undoubtedly arouse feelings in the VTM community, but for VTES players it matters less. Methuselahs accept any minions, "monstrous" or "evil" matters little, as long as they convey power!

The 132 page, gorgeously illustrated book contains:
• Introduction (About mood and theme)
• Chapter 1: Setting Fire (General information)
• Chapter 2: Apostates of a Cruel Church (Details the Paths of Enlightenment, new discipline powers and rites)
• Chapter 3: Burn Brightly (More about behavior, objectives, titles etc.)
• Chapter 4: The Gehenna War (Origin and current events, all over the world)
• Chapter 5: Storyteller Resources (More on how to use the Sabbat in your chronicles)

We know that the Black Chantry design team has been digesting for a while now, trying to decide the future for the Sabbat sect in VTES. I know they appreciate your input. Exciting times await!

Also: Have a extra look at www.worldofdarkness.com this coming month, they are doing lots of exciting stuff in this special "Month of Darkness"!



CALENDAR

Upcoming events:
VEKN still refrain from generally encouraging physical tournaments. Follow local regulations on what events are possible. Notice that online tournaments are possible - just check the box "Online tournament" when you add the event to the calendar!

For more information on upcoming events see the VEKN Event Calendar.

"Wherever smart people work, doors are unlocked."

Clint Langley VTES Backways

Backways by Clint Langley.

Greetings fellow Methuselahs,

INTRODUCING: GANGREL ANARCHS

Release date for the next four preconstructed decks is approaching, and soon cards and deck lists will be revealed. One of the decks is of clan Gangrel, and this time it is an all-Anarch deck. As you might know, in the game setting of Vampire: The Masquerade Fifth Edition roleplaying game, a majority of the Gangrel clan has joined the Anarch Movement, and that is the lore that Black Chantry follow for the Vampire: The Eternal Struggle Fifth Edition product line. From the tuckbox:

Clan Gangrel are outsiders, roaming wilderness and suburbs, straying from politics and intrigue. They keep in tune with nature and with their Inner Beast, and they value their freedom and are prepared to fight for it. The clan has now joined the Anarch Movement – they will not be pushed around, and their claws run deep.

The Gangrel deck coming up is a rather defensive deck, but in a toolbox style. Also from the tuckbox:

This deck takes a defensive stance, planning for the late game while occasionally hitting opponents with precise attacks where it hurts the most. Your strengths are animal companions, Anarch tactics and the Protean shape-changing powers of your minions, which help to pass blockers, intercept enemies and excel in combat.

Below you see the classic card Backways with new art by veteran VTES artist Clint Langley, the new card Deep Ecology (art by new VTES artist Kim Aldau) and new vampire Kamile Paukstys (art by Noorva Hirvonen, also a great VTES player).

Backways

Deep Ecology VTES

Kamile Paukstys VTES


 VTES Playtest Seating 2021

FINAL SEATING RULE CHANGE IN PLAYTEST

The VEKN is doing a playtest of a change in the rules for final table seating. The change was first discussed with the National Coordinators in a survey, and they thought it was interesting enough to do test some more.

From VEKN Rules Director Vincent Ripoll´s original description:

"Lurking has long been seen as a necessary evil: choosing the seating in the finals is meaningless if one doesn’t know what the others are playing. However, all players are not equal in the amount of intel they can gather (it depends on who met who during the preliminary rounds, and of how much data you can collect from other players between rounds), and lurking often results in a nuisance as players tend to assist to other games once their game is over.

It can also be difficult for some players to gather information during online tournaments.

In order to remove the necessity of lurking (and thus reducing the need of it) for the purpose of choosing one's seating for the final table, I am considering the following changes (in bold):

3.1.3. Final Round Seating
Table positions are not assigned in the final round. Instead each of the finalists is given an index card (or reasonable substitute) with his or her name on it. 𝗘𝗮𝗰𝗵 𝗳𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗹𝗶𝘀𝘁 𝘀𝗵𝘂𝗳𝗳𝗹𝗲𝘀 𝗵𝗶𝘀 𝗼𝗿 𝗵𝗲𝗿 𝗰𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗽𝗿𝗲𝘀𝗲𝗻𝘁𝘀 𝗶𝘁 𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗷𝘂𝗱𝗴𝗲 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗮𝗱𝗱𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻𝗮𝗹 𝘀𝗵𝘂𝗳𝗳𝗹𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗰𝘂𝘁𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴, 𝗶𝗳 𝗱𝗲𝘀𝗶𝗿𝗲𝗱. 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗷𝘂𝗱𝗴𝗲 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗻 𝗱𝗿𝗮𝘄𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗿𝗲𝗲 𝗿𝗮𝗻𝗱𝗼𝗺 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗳𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝗲𝗮𝗰𝗵 𝗰𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗮𝗹𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗺: 𝘁𝗵𝗼𝘀𝗲, 𝗮𝘀 𝘄𝗲𝗹𝗹 𝗮𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗻𝘂𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝗼𝗳 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗹𝗲𝗳𝘁 𝗶𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗰𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝘄𝗵𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝘆 𝗯𝗲𝗹𝗼𝗻𝗴 𝘁𝗼, 𝗮𝗿𝗲 𝗽𝘂𝗯𝗹𝗶𝗰 𝗶𝗻𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝘂𝗻𝘁𝗶𝗹 𝗮𝗹𝗹 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗽𝗹𝗮𝘆𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗮𝗿𝗲 𝘀𝗲𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗱. Starting with the lowest qualifier, each qualifier places his or her index card faceup in a row on the table. When placing his or her card, each player must choose to position his or her card at either end of the row (one end of the row is equivalent to the other) or may create a space between two cards already placed. After all cards have been placed, they are read from left to right to determine seating positions in the final round. The judge will then determine randomly which player will play first. 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗮𝗹𝗲𝗱 𝗰𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗮𝗿𝗲 𝘀𝗵𝘂𝗳𝗳𝗹𝗲𝗱 𝗯𝗮𝗰𝗸 𝗶𝗻𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗶𝗿 𝗼𝘄𝗻𝗲𝗿’𝘀 𝗰𝗿𝘆𝗽𝘁."

A number of countries have entered the playtesting, see this forum post.

Tournaments using the new rule are sanctioned as usual. If you want to know more, please contact your National Coordinator.


 Day 1 final NAC 2019

NAC Day 1 final 2019.

13 TOURNAMENTS IN THE NORTH AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK!

Live tournaments are possible again in USA, and you are welcome to the "Week of Nightmares" and the North American Championship at the Origins game fair in Columbus, Ohio. Black Chantry's own Ben Peal will be the head organizer for all the events, no less than 13 in 8 days:
• September 26: Week of Nightmares Event 1
• September 27: Week of Nightmares Event 2
• September 27: Week of Nightmares Event 3
• September 28: Week of Nightmares Event 5
• September 28: Week of Nightmares Event 4
• September 29: Week of Nightmares Event 7
• September 29: Week of Nightmares Event 6: Draft
• September 30: Origins - Thursday 1
• September 30: Origins - Thursday 2
• October 1: Origins - Friday 1
• October 1: Origins - Friday 2
• October 2: Origins - North American Championships
• October 3: Origins - Forced Awakening

More information in the VEKN Event Calendar and also (restrictions, venues, discount) at VTES in North America Facebook group. Or ask !


Mexico VTES League

VTES IN PANDEMIC TIMES: THE MEXICAN ANARCA LEAGUE

Things are happening in Mexico:

As in the rest of the world, the situation of the health contingency due to COVID-19 has forced the restriction of meetings and large concentrations of people in closed places, and Mexico is no exception. Currently, with the appearance of other variants of the virus, it has motivated governments to call on the population to be extremely careful regardless of whether they have already taken the vaccine or not. As for the community of Mexico, we have had sporadic game meetings at the home of some of the players and we were thinking of restarting activities in some of the stores to grow the community of players, so we had thought about starting face-to-face tournaments. However, due to the health situation, it seems that it will not be possible shortly. We hope to host our national championship later this year or early 2022.

To maintain the competitive spirit of the community after the experience of the Atlantic Cup 2021, we decided to implement a competition in an online league format through the Discord and LackeyCCG platforms for Mexican players. Each player will accumulate victory points (VP) in weekly games for 4 months – the champion will be the one who accumulates the most VP's. Although initially the tournament was designed for the Mexican community, thanks to the community's social networks, players from both Chile and Brazil have joined, which gives the tournament a wealth in terms of strategies and styles of play, and always benefits the entire gaming community.

Although some countries will be returning little by little to face-to-face activities, it seems to me that online gaming is here to stay, since it allows, in a relatively easy way, to connect communities of players that otherwise would be difficult to find. Thanks to these platforms, Mexican players were able for the first time in 25 years to participate in a world championship last year, an idea that many of us had imagined very difficult. Likewise, these platforms have allowed Spanish-speaking communities to have a more frequent exchange regarding issues related to the game itself, such as the implementation of the rules, standardizing judging criteria or doubts that arise during the games.

Lackey and Discord have become valuable tools for our community, not only for the game but for the exchange of ideas between the different communities, motivating the creation of related content as different as each game of VTES. I invite you to continue using them in each one of your playgroups and among the different communities of the world. We look forward to the next international event soon, and of course, we open the invitation to all players to participate in our league.

Eduardo García Ayala, @LaloVtes

Do you also want to contribute to this newsletter? Please contact the editor at . Hope to hear from you!



Sede de VitaeMORE VTES IN PANDEMIC TIMES: SEDE DE VITAE

Sede de vitae ("thirst for vitae") is a new phenomenon in tournaments, built to occupy space in the weekly schedule of Brazilian players. Each event is a constructed tournament with 2 rounds + final which take place during weekdays: round 1 on Monday, round 2 on Wednesday and finals on Thursday.

The results so far are extraordinary! Here are some numbers related to the first 10 editions:
Total players: 205
Unique players: 49
States: 12 different states
Cities: more than 15 cities
Champions: 8 different champions
Finalists: 25 different finalists

Structure: Discord for voice chat (Desso Alastor's channel), Whatsapp is used for preparing the game and LackeyCCG is the platform for playing.

Live streams of the games happen at Henrikone - Twitch, Blood Faca - Youtube and Channel 10 VTES - Youtube.

There's no fee to play, but players are welcome to donate any amount that they desire, and after every 5 tournaments, in a livestream built for the community, the entire amount received in donations is converted in prizes (portuguese VTES cards from the local distributor Conclave Editora) and drawn between participating players.

As a sidenote, in Brazil the pandemic has caused more than 500.000 deaths and some of those deaths have reached our players. Thanks to the online matches we could escape from this cruel and unpredictable reality spending some quality time with our friends, even though we are far away and behind a computer screen. The events will continue, and every week will bring new adventures. We thank you all for the opportunity"

Desso Alastor, organizer
 


 VTES Rules questions August 2021RULES Q & A

Black Chantry Rules Director Vincent Ripoll answers some rules questions:

Q: I am a little confused by cards that don’t inflict damage. Does Coma work at long range? What about a strike: combat ends?
A: By default, strikes are only effective at close range. Since Coma lacks the “ranged” word, it does not work at long range (you can play it still for no effect, but remember that you have to pay the cost). Strike: combat ends (as well as a dodge) is effective at any range, because the rulebook says so.
 
Q: Can I play a Relentless Reaper to avoid the new combat created by Illusions of the Kindred? What about Psyche!?
A: You can play Relentless Reaper: Illusions of the Kindred will have no effect, and a new round against the opposing vampire starts. You cannot however play Psyche!: since Illusions of the Kindred “queues” a combat, and Psyche! does the same, there is a ruling preventing more than one combat being queued (“An effect which would cause (a new) combat cannot be used if there is already a "to be resolved later" combat.) [RTR 20020501]

Q: Can I play Eternals of Sirius if I am at 4 pool? Or 3 pool?
A: You can play it if you have 4 pool left: you pay the card and gain the pool at the same time, so you would end at 5 pool. You cannot play it if you have 3 pool or less, since you cannot pay for it in order to play it. [See forum thread]

Q: Vivienne Géroux can now play “cards requiring basic Celerity [cel] and/or Fortitude [for] as an Anarch vampire.” Can she play Diversion using Celerity or Fortitude, then Forced March, then Constant Revolution?
A: She can play Diversion using one of those Disciplines (cardtext), then Forced March since she can play cards requiring both Disciplines at the same time. However, she cannot play Constant Revolution since it does not require any of those Disciplines. [See forum thread]



DECKS TO BEAT: AUGUST

A retrospect by Rudolf Scholz

Summer blues here: rain instead of sunshine, almost no possibilities to play VTES locally with the buddies … For example Stockholm, with a new league season finally taking place again in the Dragon’s Lair game store, sounds like a nice place to be, at least to me.

Now, ladies and gentlemen, it is time to look back at the tournament winning decks with the most participants from August 2000, 2005, 2010 and 2015. It would have been three decks by “Team France”, but I dared skipping Selim Ammouche’s EC 2015 Day 1 win in a field of 95 players (kudos!) to avoid a Stanislava repetition.

VTES Decks to beat August 01Year 2000
Untitled deck by Christian King
Deck type: Toolboxy Lasombra stealth-bleed
GenCon 2000 – Milwaukee, Wisconsin, US – August 13 – unknown number of players

Crypt (12)
2x Gratiano   8 DOM OBT obf pot   priscus   Lasombra:2
2x Guido Lucciano   5 OBT dom obf   Lasombra:2
2x Ignacio, The Black Priest   4 dom obt pot   Lasombra:2
2x Ramiro   4 dom obt vic   Lasombra:2
1x Angelica, The Canonicus   10 DOM OBT POT cel obf  cardinal  Lasombra:2
1x Aurora Van Brande, Paladin   6 OBT dom for pot   Lasombra:2
1x Aaron Duggan, Cameron's Toady   2 obt   Lasombra:2
1x Mitchell, The Headhunter   2 obt pot   Pander:2

Library (91 cards)
1x Archon Investigation
4x Blood Doll
3x Dominate
3x Elysian Fields
2x Elysium: The Arboretum
2x Minion Tap
2x Obtenebration
3x Political Hunting Ground
2x Slave Auction
1x Sudden Reversal

1x Bum's Rush
6x Govern the Unaligned

4x Leather Jacket

7x Bonding
6x Conditioning
8x Shadow Play
3x Shroud of Night

3x Arms of the Abyss
3x Entombment
5x Shadow Body

5x Deflection
5x Eyes of the Night
6x Redirection
6x Wake with Evening's Freshness

2021 comments:
– Well, back in August 2000, it was not that easy to design a Lasombra stealth-bleed deck. Only 11 Lasombra existed, and only 8 featured Dominate and Obtenebration, and the youngest to have both on superior was the mighty Gratiano. Okay, there were also a few vampires with Obtenebration and Dominate in other clans, but to include one or two of them, like the Ventrue antitribu Gerard, would have made things only a bit easier for Christian crypt-wise.
– Even worse, there existed only two different Obtenebration action modifiers to gain stealth, Shadow Play and Shroud of Night, and the latter can be used on a bleed action only at superior level.
– Besides the awkward size of 91 (Judge!), the library discloses the deck’s pursuit of many important goals: bleed to oust, when needed add stealth, bounce bleeds, block occasionally, be prepared for some combat and gain back some pool from your vampires’ blood.
– Elysium: The Arboretum surely is a surprise, because its effect can be applied only in a combat between Camarilla vampires – these days. However, until 2001, it affected ANY combat with one of your vampires. (Thanks go to Ke for his Amaranth Deck Builder which allows to take a look at card texts of older editions!).
– To make the deck a viable threat today, you would have to do the usual (main-) streamlining: add a few Govern the Unaligned, diversify the stealth modifiers, reduce the combat module; of course convert most of the Wake with Evening's Freshness to On the Qui Vive, and most Redirection should be Deflection. Pool gain should happen via Villein instead of Slave Auction and Minion Tap, and blood gain via Giant’s Blood, Jake Washington and The Coven besides 1 Hunting Ground. Secure Haven could replace Elysium: The Arboretum.
– Nowadays, if you wanted to bleed fast and dirty with Obtenebration and Dominate, you would and should (!) go for groups 3 and 4 or 4 and 5 and among others enjoy two 5-cap powerhouses with OBT and DOM called Dame Hollerton and Ermenegildo, The Rake. For example, search for “Spanish Ladies” in the TWDA, and you will know what I mean.

VTES Decks to beat August 02Year 2005
“Exhibitboon” by François Morand
Deck type: Weenie to Midcap Toreador antitribu swarm bleed & vote
Open de France – Carcassonne, France  – August 27 – 75 players

Crypt (14)
2x Jost Werner   6 AUS PRE ani   Toreador antitribu:2
2x Lolita   3 for pre   Toreador antitribu:2
2x Carter   2 cel   Toreador antitribu:2
2x Nicholas Chang   2 aus   Toreador antitribu:3
1x Sheila Mezarin   6 AUS PRE cel for   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Creamy Jade   5 PRE aus cel vic   Toreador antitribu:3
1x Cristos Mantigo   5 aus cel dom obf pre   Toreador antitribu:3
1x Mercy, Knight Inquisitor   5 AUS cel dom pre   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Remilliard, Devout Crusader   4 AUS pre   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Sabrina   4 aus cel pre   Toreador antitribu:3

Library (89)
1x Anarch Troublemaker
1x Creepshow Casino
2x Día de los Muertos
1x Direct Intervention
1x Elder Library
1x Fetish Club Hunting Ground
2x Fortschritt Library
7x Foundation Exhibit
1x Heidelberg Castle, Germany
1x Humanitas
1x Jake Washington
1x Life Boon
5x Palla Grande
5x Parthenon, The
1x Sudden Reversal
1x Sunset Strip, Hollywood
3x Visit from the Capuchin

3x Anthelios, The Red Star
1x Slow Withering, The
1x Veil of Darkness

6x Art Scam
12x Embrace, The

11x Consanguineous Boon
2x Disputed Territory
2x Rumors of Gehenna

6x Change of Target

6x Dodge

4x Delaying Tactics

2021 comments:
– Toreador antitribu breeding, bleeding, voting … Let’s compare it to the Black Chantry deck “Libertine Ball” and have a look at the differences:
– Both decks feature the powerful master cards Foundation Exhibit and Palla Grande, and they use The Embrace to create a swarm of Toreador antitribu taking pool-gaining actions like Art Scam or Consanguineous Boon.
– The two main differences are that François’ deck features much more master cards, which is justified by 5x The Parthenon, and abstains from using any cards requiring disciplines, which allows to add nasty Gehenna events; of which François used even more in his tournament winning deck in a 24 player event 4 months earlier. Anthelios, The Red Star got banned in 2016, though, thus the master card recursion is now gone.
– Crypt-wise, stealthy Jost Werner and bleedy Sheila Mezarin are special forces available only the a group 2/3 crypt, but Klaus Konrecht, even though an 8-cap, is a Cardinal, and he will finally be seconded by a non-PDF version of Mélusine d’Anjou once the Unleashed Kickstarter sets are delivered, woohoo!
– Library cards to consider for breed deck like this: Not to Be and/or The Uncoiling to defend against Scourge of the Enochians (a threat born with the release of the Keepers of Tradition set in 2008); Aranthebes, The Immortal to contest Aranthebes, The Immortal; Pentex Subversion (How could he do without it?) and Gird Minions. And even more events, like Narrow Minds or Fall of the Camarilla.
VTES Decks to beat August 03Year 2010
“!Ventrue pour CF 2010” by Pierre Tran-Van (“Stone”)
Deck type: Ventrue antitribu pseudo grinder
French NC 2010 – Salle des Pavillons, Lyon, France – August 29 – 47 players

Notes from Pierre (translated): “Originally a Ventrue antitribu deck with a Concealed / Desert Eagle / Magazine / Scattershot module, tested once in a friendly game and 4 times in a 5 player tournament. Because of limited time, the module was removed and, well, replaced by some filling stuff. It made a sweep in a friendly game at ‘Troll de Jeux’ the Tuesday before the tournament. In this state, it's an unpretentious thing, a kind of tap'n'bleed in disguise. The surprise Orgy of Blood, the wet dream Last Stand and the submarine kill Slaughtering the Herd have never been played during the tournament.”

Crypt (12)
3x Neighbor John   5 AUS dom for   Ventrue antitribu:4
2x Owain Evans, The Wanderer   8 AUS DOM FOR cel pre   Ventrue antitribu:3
2x Blackhorse Tanner   7 AUS DOM FOR   Ventrue antitribu:3
1x Charice Fontaigne   6 AUS DOM for pot   Ventrue antitribu:3
1x Jefferson Foster   6 AUS DOM for tha   bishop  Ventrue antitribu:4
1x Katherine Stoddard   4 dom for   Ventrue antitribu:3
1x Sister Evelyn   3 aus dom   Ventrue antitribu:3
1x Ulrike Rothbart   3 dom for   Ventrue antitribu:4

Library (90)
2x Anarch Troublemaker
1x Corporate Hunting Ground
1x Direct Intervention
1x Giant's Blood
1x Last Stand
3x Misdirection
1x Pentex(TM) Subversion
1x Powerbase: Montreal
3x Vessel
3x Wash

1x Uncoiling, The

13x Govern the Unaligned
2x Slaughtering the Herd

1x Bowl of Convergence
1x Heart of Nizchetus

2x Bonding
8x Conditioning
1x Daring the Dawn
2x Seduction

4x Indomitability
1x Orgy of Blood
2x Rolling with the Punches
3x Target Vitals
4x Weighted Walking Stick

7x Deflection
5x Delaying Tactics
2x Eagle's Sight
2x Enhanced Senses
4x Eyes of Argus
3x Forced Awakening
1x My Enemy's Enemy
3x On the Qui Vive
1x Telepathic Misdirection

2021 comments:
– When either of the notorious vampires Owain Evans, Blackhorse Tanner or Neighbor John enters the game’s controlled region, the usual expectation is to meet the “Grinder” archetype (please read VTES One´s archetype article for a detailed description).
– However, it seems like Pierre designed his deck for a special metagame: 5x Delaying Tactics, fewer combat cards, 6x “European Stealth” (again, see VTES One for reference). I guess he made a few of his VPs in that tournament by simply surprising his opponents.
– A group 3/4 Ventrue antitribu deck is very successful in general, when played correctly, and allows a lot of tweaking and metagame choices. The most unconventional card I witnessed so far was Masochism, and Pierre’s pick Last Stand is on the same level of strangeness in my opinion.
– I suggest entering the three main vampires in the TWDA crawler of your choice (I work with Codex of the Damned and VDB) to get a survey.
VTES Decks to beat August 04Year 2015
Untitled deck by Otso Saariluoma
Deck type: Auspex Presence bounce and bleed
EC 2015 Last Chance Qualifier – Warsaw, Poland – August 28 – 74 players

Notes by Otso: “The deck itself has the usual suspects with AUS PRE. It is inspired by a similiar deck popularized by Martin Weinmeyer's EC win back in 2009 – although with higher caps, more auspex and lacking fortitude and Daring the Dawns. This version has problems with dedicated blockers and stealth vote, but otherwise has proven to be quite resilient with lots of reactions and combat ends, which gives the flexibility to alter your tempo and possibly wait for an opportunity to present itself.
    In the preliminary rounds I really would have needed Darings against my ani pro prey. In the second round I got lucky as Kim was one card short of running away with the game, which would have costed me the spot in the finals. And I got lucky again in the finals drawing half of my combat ends in the first quarter of the library against Pascal's Enkidu – but some luck is obviously needed in this game. In the heads-up against Noora's The Unnamed the deck transformed into a half-decent block deck.

Crypt (12)
2x Rebekka, Chantry Elder of Munich   8 AUS PRE THA pot   Tremere:2
2x Jost Werner   6 AUS PRE ani   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Sheila Mezarin   6 AUS PRE cel for   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Felicia Mostrom   5 AUS CEL pre   Toreador:1
1x Ramiel DuPre   5 PRE aus cel dom   Toreador:1
1x Mariana Gilbert   4 PRE cel   Toreador:1
1x Remilliard, Devout Crusader   4 AUS pre   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Violette Prentiss   4 PRE dom   Ventrue:1
1x Gideon Fontaine   3 PRE   Ventrue:1
1x Isabel de Leon   3 AUS   Toreador:2

Library (82)
2x Anarch Troublemaker
2x Blood Doll
1x Direct Intervention
2x Dreams of the Sphinx
1x Giant's Blood
1x Jake Washington
2x Pentex(TM) Subversion
2x Vessel
1x Wider View

10x Enchant Kindred
3x Entrancement
3x Intimidation
2x Legal Manipulations
5x Mind Numb
2x Public Trust

1x Carlton Van Wyk

1x Heart of Nizchetus

7x Aire of Elation
1x Change of Target

2x Charismatic Aura
8x Majesty

2x Delaying Tactics
6x Eyes of Argus
4x My Enemy's Enemy
3x On the Qui Vive
8x Telepathic Misdirection

2021 comments:
– Please check July’s Deck to Beat article and the year 2000 deck by Steve Coombs. Steve’s idea was to combine the bounce and block powers of Auspex with the bleed and combat powers of Presence. Now, look again at Otso’s deck – and enjoy its virtuosity.
– Changes and additions to consider: 2 or 3 copies Force of Personality, among other things to increase the chances of making Entrancement work, and Scourge of Enochians against swarm decks.

That’s it for this time. Thank you for reading!

 


 

Black Chantry logo

BLACK CHANTRY SUMMARY: AUGUST 2021

• The Unleashed Kickstarter is still under delivery. All cards weren´t printed at the same time so there was some delay before things could be packed to deliver. Hopefully all US backers have had their cards, and rest of the world is being served during September.

• Black Chantry CEO Hugh Angseesing was at UK Games Expo 2021 in Birmingham and ran demo games, sold some products and chatted with players and potential players. Thanks to you who attended!

VTES at UK Game Expo 2021

• The next batch of Legacy Card Singles has been proofread and will probably appear at Drivethrucards soon.

• The next four preconstructed decks (Banu Haqim, Brujah, Gangrel and The Ministry) are at the printer, as is the annual promo pack. Release dates are still vague, but sometime late October/early November.

• A new version of the thin First Blood decks is being prepared. This time they will not be all reprints, but feature some new cards too. Release: Early 2022.

• The Fall of London-themed mini expansion has gone through playtesting. Artwork is dropping in, looking excellent! Release: Early 2022.

VTES Fifth Edition

Black Chantry VTES products

• Currently these 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 (Also Spanish, French)
Libertine Ball Preconstructed Deck (Also Spanish, French)
Pact with Nephandi Preconstructed Deck (Also Spanish, French)
Parliament of Shadows Preconstructed Deck (Also Spanish, French)
Anthology I bundle
VTES Card Creator (Drivethrucards only)
25th Anniversary
First Blood: Malkavian (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Nosferatu (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Toreador (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Tremere (Also Spanish, French)
First Blood: Ventrue (Also Spanish, French)
VTES Legacy Card Singles (Drivethrucards only)
Promo Pack 1 (Drivethrucards only)
Promo Pack 2 (Event promos only)
VTES "Parity Shift" playmat
VTES card sleeves
Vampire: The Eternal Struggle Fifth Edition (Stores only)
Vampire: The Eternal Struggle Fifth Edition Latin (Drivethrucards only)
Fifth Edition: Malkavian (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Nosferatu (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Toreador (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Tremere (Stores only)
Fifth Edition: Ventrue (Stores only)

Do you have opinions or questions for Black Chantry? Start a topic on the VEKN forum, or contact the company by e-mailFacebookInstagram or Twitter.


World of Darkness August 2021

RECENT NEWS IN THE WORLD OF DARKNESS

The fifth and final season of “L A by Night”, the streamed Vampire: The Masquerade chronicle, is now airing. Check out the trailer and an interview with storyteller Jason Carl in the August 27 World of Darkness News. The show streams once a week at World of Darkness on Twitch and is also available on the World of Darkness Youtube channel.

Apart from that, of course we are most thrilled with the upcoming Sabbat sourcebook. It was discussed with Elisa Teague from Renegade Game Studios in the August 20 World of Darkness News, and is scheduled for a September release – super-exciting!



CALENDAR

Upcoming events:
VEKN still refrain from generally encouraging physical tournaments. Follow local regulations on what events are possible. Notice that online tournaments are possible - just check the box "Online tournament" when you add the event to the calendar!

For more information on upcoming events see the VEKN Event Calendar.

Sanity is for the weak.

Ginés Quiñonero Spying Mission VTES 2021
Spying Mission by Ginés Quiñonero.

Greetings fellow Methuselahs,

INTRODUCING: THE MINISTRY

In the Vampire: The Masquerade Fifth Edition lore, the Followers of Set have rebranded themselves as The Ministry, and Vampire: The Eternal Struggle abides. A preconstructed deck is at the heavlily-strained print shop and will appear, together with decks for Brujah, Gangrel and Banu Haqim (previously known as the Assamites) sometime in October-November.

We have to wait a bit with the deck list, but the tuckbox text tells us the following: "This deck delivers a steady stream of mischief on your enemy, with tactics both direct and indirect. Your vampires do anything to elude defenders – sneaking, hypnotizing, even shape-changing! Your defense is limited, but you have some Anarch tricks up your sleeve." So this will be a bleed deck, but Anarchness and the new clan discipline Protean (replacing Serpentis) helps it stay alive ... or should one say undead?

Below you see the new Spying Mission (always bleed responsible!), a new Baron with art by VTES veteran Ken Meyer Jr, and a new action that will be important in the deck, art by new VTES artist Kim Aldau.

Spying Mission VTES 2021 Elisha Tucker VTES 2021 Ken Meyer Jr The Platinum Protocol VTES 2021

VTES Rules Q & A July 2021RULES Q & A

Black Chantry Rules Director Vincent Ripoll answers some rules questions:

Q: If my vampire has a Sniper Rifle and blocks, and the acting vampire can set the range to close before range is determined, who wins?
A: The acting vampire has the impulse to play their cards and use their effects first, so the acting vampire “wins”: once the range has already been set, the Sniper Rifle cannot set the range anymore.
 
Q: In order to merge a vampire, do I need the two different versions of the cards, or does it work with 2 advanced versions?
A: You need the base and advanced versions. Once one is out, you can merge it with the other version by spending 4 transfers and 1 pool during your influence phase.
 
Q: If my prey gets ousted by my grand-predator (the predator of my predator), who wins the VP and the 6 pool?
A: You do, no matter who ousts your prey.

Q: The acting vampire plays Mirror Walk at superior and is blocked. Can the acting Methuselah choose to use the slave rule to unlock? And would there be combat?
A: The short answer is no [ANK-20210627]. If you want to read more about it, there is a very interesting discussion here: https://www.vekn.net/forum/rules-questions/79192-mirror-walk-and-slave and a few clarification and reversals:

Two minor changes introduced in the 2019 Sabbat preconstructed decks that should have been mentioned in the official card changes on release:

Mirror Walk: Now explicitly locks the blocking minion. (SP, 16/02/2019)

This is because Mirror Walk no longer activates half of the block resolution and cancels the other half but triggers before the whole block resolution.

Telepathic Tracking: The card is played when the combat would end, and replaces this by starting a new round. Telepathic Tracking is always played before Psyche! because Psyche! is played when combat is about to end (that is after any replacement effects). (SP, 16/02/2019)

REVERSAL (of the last part of LSJ 20090513 about Promise of 1528): you cannot play Promise of 1528 before burning the blood or life to the Banshee Ironwail.

This is due to this new RULING: An effect that is delayed (such as Mirror Walk effect: "if this action is blocked, lock the blocking minion and end the action before block resolution.") happens as soon as the condition is met, before any Methuselah can play other cards or use other effects in that same timing window (it is not possible to "interrupt" the resolution of an effect by playing other unrelated effects, even if they share the same timing window).

If two delayed effects have the same timing, then they are resolved in sequence, as usual.

Do you have your own rules questions? The easiest way to get a quick answer is posting it in either the VEKN.net forum or in the VEKN Facebook group.


Card text updates July 2021OFFICIAL CARD TEXT UPDATES

Also from Vincent Ripoll, the official card text database has been updated, effective 09/07/2021 (DD/MM/YYYY):

  • Daliah: Gaining blood is now optional.
  • De Sade: All vampires (including the ones which the same controller) must burn blood to vote against De Sade's referendums.
  • Inside Dirt: Burns 3 blood or 3 pool, instead of 2.
  • Public Vilification: The blood stolen is now distributed among vampires.
  • Show of Force: The vampire can gain +2 strength at superior instead of +1 strength.
  • Vivienne Géroux: Can now play cards requiring basic Celerity and/or Fortitude as an Anarch vampire. (This includes Forced March and Diversion).

Also, note that there is a typo on Illegalism in the Kickstarter version of Anarch Unbound: The [chi] effect should read "This is a +1 stealth action." instead of "This action a +1 stealth action." This is a typo – there is no practical difference in these two wordings.

Also, some have asked what happened to the Mind´s Eye Theater promo card Alicia Cortez? The card was released on March 31, and is tournament legal as of that date. It has been added to the card database.



DECKS TO BEAT: JULY

A retrospect by Rudolf Scholz

I rise my glass in memory of the ones we lost. Mementum mori, and say “Not today!” … I hope many of you have played VTES again, real VTES with cards in hand, and started to enjoy the summertime. Have you seen some previews of the new decks by Black Chantry and maybe even already pre-ordered some? Anyway, it is now time to look back, at the tournament winning decks with the most participants from July 2000, 2005, 2010 and 2015. Three out of four of these decks made use of library recursion.

VTES July 2021 01Year 2000
Untitled deck by Steve Coombs
Deck type: Midcap Presence lock-and-bleed toolbox
DragonCon 2000 – Atlanta, Georgia, US – July 2 – Unknown number of players

Notes from Steve: “Some comments about playing this deck:
1. Don't rely on getting any specific card, nor wait for one.
2. Play the hand you receive (all surprises from the deck will be good, I promise).
3. Cycle – Focus on going forward, you cannot win with this deck if you turtle up.
4. This deck was designed to play at a 4 player table ... (It's what I'm used to and usually what I see in tournaments).
5. Yes this deck is not perfect and it does have weaknesses, but I foresee changes to it in the not too distant future.
6. I'd like to thank David and Jose and the Charlotte play group for all their help and teachings over the last year.”

Crypt (12)
2x Anson   8 CEL PRE aus dom  prince  Toreador:1
1x Jost Werner   6 AUS PRE ani   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Rake   6 PRE aus cel pot  prince  Brujah:1
1x Sheila Mezarin   6 AUS PRE cel for   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Felicia Mostrom   5 AUS CEL pre   Toreador:1
1x Ramiel DuPre   5 PRE aus cel dom   Toreador:1
1x Demetrius Slater   4 aus cel pre   Toreador:1
1x Mariana Gilbert   4 PRE cel   Toreador:1
1x Remilliard, Devout Crusader   4 AUS pre   Toreador antitribu:2
1x Gideon Fontaine   3 PRE   Ventrue:1
1x Delilah Easton   2 pre   Toreador:1

Library (90)
4x Auspex
1x Barrens, The
3x Blood Doll
1x Effective Management
1x Elysium: The Arboretum
1x Giant's Blood
2x Information Highway
1x KRCG News Radio
2x Misdirection
1x Parthenon, The
3x Presence
2x Society Hunting Ground
2x Sudden Reversal
1x Tomb of Rameses III

2x Distraction
8x Legal Manipulations
1x Pulse of the Canaille
8x Social Charm

1x Ivory Bow
6x Marijava Ghoul
1x Palatial Estate
1x Sengir Dagger

10x Aire of Elation

4x Dodge
6x Majesty

2x Delaying Tactics
6x Telepathic Counter
2x Telepathic Misdirection
7x Wake with Evening's Freshness

2021 comments:

  • Presence bleed is powerful and a viable choice, and trying to make use of Marijava Ghoul to bleed at +1 stealth with Presence cards is an interesting idea. Auspex as a second discipline is quite common nowadays, which usually leads to a Toreador antitribu and Toreador crypt.
  • With a deck like Steve’s, you try to overwhelm your prey, either by successfully bleeding or by getting blocked, which locks the blocker, and surviving the combat and doing something useful afterwards, either with the same vampire, in case of superior Majesty, or with the next one.
  • However, this deck features too many master cards (taking into account that there are only 2 copies of Anson and 1 copy of The Parthenon); and if you really need 7 skill cards, you should probably ask yourself if you have chosen the right crypt.
  • If you drop the skill cards, the master card section immediately looks better. By taking out 2 other (Tomb of Rameses III, KRCG News Radio) and by turning 2 more (Elysium: The Arboretum, The Parthenon) into copies of Dreams of the Sphinx, things start to look well.
  • The Presence bleed cards are usually more diversified these days, e. g. Enchant Kindred allows you to build up or play a waiting game, Entrancement to take care about allies. Distraction could be Mind Numb. 2 copies of Aire of Elation could be changed to Change of Target. Change the Dodges to more copies of Majesty and/or to Staredown and/or Charismatic Aura and/or Force of Personality.
  • Looking at the reaction cards, Wake with Evening’s Freshness has to be replaced by On the Qui Vive and Eyes of Argus, and usually Telepathic Counter makes way for more copies of Telepathic Misdirection and for My Enemy’s Enemy.
  • Crypt-wise, Rebekkah should join the team, and maybe Greta Kircher.



VTES July 2021 02Year 2005
“With a feminine touch” by Jarkko Suvela
Deck type: Gangrel and Protean friends bigcap vote
Ropecon – Espoo, Finland – July 22 – 85 players

Crypt (13)
3x Stanislava   11 ANI CEL DOM FOR PRO  inner circle  Gangrel:2
2x Genevieve   10 ANI FOR PRO aus dom  priscus   Gangrel antitribu:2
2x Rachel Brandywine   10 AUS DEM OBF PRO ani  prince   Malkavian:3
2x Ingrid Rossler   9 ANI FOR PRO dom   prince   Gangrel:2
1x Caitlin   6 ANI PRO aus dom   bishop   Gangrel antitribu:2
1x Bothwell   3 ani for   Gangrel:3
1x Chandler Hungerford   3 PRO   Gangrel:2
1x Panagos Levidis   3 ani obf   Gangrel:2

Library (90)
3x Blood Doll
1x Direct Intervention
1x Dominate
2x Dreams of the Sphinx
1x Ecoterrorists
1x Giant's Blood
2x Golconda: Inner Peace
5x Minion Tap
1x Sudden Reversal

1x Alastor
1x Ancient Influence
2x Banishment
1x Disputed Territory
1x Gangrel Justicar
5x Kine Resources Contested
2x Parity Shift
1x Political Stranglehold
1x Protect Thine Own
4x Reinforcements
1x Reins of Power

1x Assault Rifle
1x J. S. Simmons, Esq.
1x Ossian
1x Palatial Estate
1x Tasha Morgan

3x Beast Meld
3x Conditioning
4x Earth Control
6x Freak Drive
3x Rapid Change

3x Carrion Crows
5x Earth Meld
4x Form of Mist
3x Superior Mettle

7x Deflection
2x Guard Dogs
2x Rat's Warning
3x Wake with Evening's Freshness

2021 comments:

  • The lady with the rose, yet not as a star vampire … The best way to find out about its special features is comparing it with 25th Anniversary.
  • With Carrion Crows and Superior Mettle, Jarkko’s deck is prepared for a few fights (to counter Finnish politics?), and with Alastor, Assault Rifle and Ossian, it has means to get rid of soft targets as well. Protect Thine Own also helped to deal with problematic vampires, but it got banned in 2008. There is also a library recursion module with Reinforcements which can allow you to do some deal-making.
  • Like the 25th Anniversary deck, this deck focuses on political actions and relies on Dominate for bleed defence, but it does not really try to put vampires into play faster (no Govern the Unaligned, no Zillah’s Valley). This deck won a BIG tournament, yet I wonder about the usefulness of the weenies (except for Chandler Hungerford).
  • Obvious changes are Minion Tap to Villein and Wake with Evening’s Freshness to On the Qui Vive. Recommended crypt changes are Rachel Brandywine to Xaviar Advanced and Panagos Levidis (since he has neither Fortitude nor Protean) to Mark Decker. Replacement for Protect Thine Own could be Scourge of the Enochians.
  • It should be tried to reduce the size of the library to make the Reinforcements more efficient. A first try is -1 Blood Doll, -1 Golconda, -1 Gangrel Justicar, -1 Kine Resources Contested, -1 Beast Meld, -1 Guard Dogs, -1 Carrion Crows. (If I were looking for a true redux version of this deck, I would kindly ask Jay Kristoff for help.)



VTES July 2021 03Year 2010
AD&D (Advanced Derange & Dementia) by Otso Saariluoma
Deck type: Malkavian bigcap stealth toolbox
Ropecon – Dipoli, Espoo, Finland – July 23 – 93 players

Notes from Otso: “The same deck I played before, this time with slight alterations, as I found Unmada too important to miss in the opening crypt. Temptation of Greater Power was actually an excellent addition. If you want to use the combo in every single game (which I didn't), I'd suggest playing more copies of the key cards: Derange, Dementia and Enkil Cog.”

20 days before Ropecon, Otso had won a smaller tournament with almost the same deck that he had named DnD (Derange & Dementia). On that deck, he commented: “The classic combo [Derange & Malkavian Dementia] with some new cards. Enkil Cog makes targeting the right vampires easier. Bring out Unmada first, Cybele second and Lutz third, if able. If all else fails, just bleed for three.”

Crypt (12)
5x Unmada   10 AUS DEM OBF VIC cel for  justicar   Malkavian:5
4x Cybele   10 ANI DAI OBF PRE SER THA   Baali:4
3x Lutz von Hohenzollern  11 AUS DEM OBF PRE pot   inner circle  Malkavian:4

Library (76)
1x Archon Investigation
6x Ashur Tablets
1x Direct Intervention
3x Dreams of the Sphinx
1x Giant's Blood
2x Golconda: Inner Peace
2x Heidelberg Castle, Germany
2x Information Highway
3x Malkavian Dementia
1x Metro Underground
1x Monastery of Shadows
3x Parthenon, The
1x Pentex(TM) Subversion
1x Temptation of Greater Power
6x Villein
1x Wash
2x Wider View
3x Zillah's Valley

2x Anthelios, The Red Star
1x Scourge of the Enochians

5x Derange
1x Entrancement

1x Banishment
2x Parity Shift
1x Political Stranglehold
1x Reins of Power

1x Cloak the Gathering
1x Elder Impersonation
2x Enkil Cog
2x Faceless Night
2x Forgotten Labyrinth
1x Into Thin Air
2x Lost in Crowds
1x Spying Mission
2x Swallowed by the Night

3x No Trace

2x Eyes of Argus
3x Telepathic Misdirection

2021 comments:

  • Both Anthelios, The Red Star and Temptation of Greater Power are banned since 2016. Especially the first ban affects this master-heavy deck. The simplest fix seems to be: add a copy of each Derange and Malkavian Dementia for the lost copies of Anthelios. Temptation of Greater Power could become something defensive, maybe Unleash Hell’s Fury. Plus, after the RTR 20201130 Derange lost a bit of its disruptive powers.
  • The trick of the deck: Put Derange on a worthy target, preferably out-of-turn with the help of Enkil Cog, thus it cannot be removed before the start of your next turn. In your next master phase, play Malkavian Dementia on a deranged vampire and do with it what you regard to be appropriate: Play Golconda on it, or use Heidelberg Castle to drain off the blood and take a useful action if the vampire was unlocked. As a side benefit, Derange usually slows down the game to your favour.
  • Even without the combo the deck is a valid threat. And being granted two or maybe even three master phase actions, two sets of Ashur Tablets will probably allow you to retrieve precious cards. Possible variations of this deck: Adding Anarchist Uprising and Ancilla Empowerment is one of the most obvious choices, because of the many weenie and ally decks out there. You could try out Social Ladder (to be played after Malkavian Dementia), put in more stealth/block denial cards, or play more reaction cards (wakes, bounce, Mental Maze, etc).
  • If you squeeze in one or better two Master: Discipline skill cards into this deck, you can hope to be able to play Derange on ANY vampire. ;-)



VTES July 2021 04Year 2015
“NAG Anu gets a blood” by Bram van Stappen
Deck type: Anu and Weenies with Procurers swarm bleed
French LCQ – Soissons, France – June 4 – 31 players

Notes from Extrala who chose this deck as Deck of the Month in his blog: “The deck is a rather untypical ally bleed deck built around Anu Diptinatpa and the Procurer ally. The Procurers together with Anu’s special ability to spend a blood to give a minion (!) an extra +1 bleed, serve two purposes. The first is to bleed for one with Anu’s help, and the second one is to provide Anu with an extra blood (hence the deck’s name) for future bleed modification. If you dare to block, the third angle of the deck is kicking in: with Concealed Weapon & Flash Grenade the minions are able to end combat and tap down an opposing vampire easily for the next untap phase. The deck looks very inconspicuous, but it’s fast, and puts a lot of pressure on its prey with a horde of minions.” 

Crypt (12)
5x Anu Diptinatpa   7 DOM NEC aus vic   Nagaraja:6
1x Andre LeRoux   3 aus   Toreador:5
1x Alu   2 obf   Assamite:5
1x Dr. Solomon Grey   2 dom pre   Caitiff:5
1x Eric Milliner   2 pot   Giovanni:5
1x Honest Abe   2 pre   Brujah:5
1x New Blood   2 san   Blood Brother:ANY
1x Nichodemus   2 pot   Nosferatu:5

Library (73)
1x Anarch Troublemaker
6x Ashur Tablets
3x Blood Doll
1x Coven, The
1x Direct Intervention
2x Dreams of the Sphinx
1x Giant's Blood
1x Jake Washington
4x Life in the City
2x Parthenon, The
1x Wider View

1x FBI Special Affairs Division
2x Unmasking, The

1x Carlton Van Wyk
10x Procurer

1x Camera Phone
1x Codex of the Edenic Groundskeepers
7x Flash Grenade
3x Saturday-Night Special

1x Change of Target

2x Backstep
9x Concealed Weapon
2x Dragon's Breath Rounds

6x Deflection
1x Delaying Tactics
2x On the Qui Vive
1x Redirection

2021 comments:

  • Bram himself says: “Well, I'd say it's originally built, pre-Legionnaire age. People tend to underestimate the damage output. The module with deflect and Anu's special is superstrong, especially if you can just use Procurer to fill her up again.”
  • It takes a while to fully understand all the threats Bram packed into this deck, and any unprepared opponent will tend to not regard it as a threat at all. First of all, any bleed delivered or bounced by this deck, even a bleed for zero, asks the same question to your prey: “To block or not to block?”
  • Personally, I like Procurers using Flash Grenades very much, since it is very powerful to lock an opposing vampire and not letting them unlock in their next turn. Adding the Saturday-Nights Specials together with Dragon’s Breath Rounds puts even more mental pressure on your opponents.
  • There is only one card I recommend to add to this deck: two or three copies of Anarch Convert (at the same time dropping one or two of the 2-caps), since in my opinion Anarch Revolt is currently a very common card in tournaments and a big threat to a deck like this.
  • Depending on the metagame, a second Delaying Tactics (in exchange for a Deflection) might be required, and a second The Coven (probably in exchange for a Blood Doll) could be useful since the first copy tends to be removed from the game (=> the curse ^^). I am tempted to put in a Secure Haven to help protecting the star vampire, yet it would not interact well with Life in the City and Blood Doll.



That’s it for this time. Thank you for reading!


VEKN Facebook growth
VEKN ON FACEBOOK NOW 2,059 MEMBERS!

... of which a whopping 1,812 are considered "active members" during the last month. The growth is not explosive, but considering the launch of VTES Fifth Edition was during a period when physical events has been discouraged, any growth is welcome. Thanks to all of you out there who promote the game, on Lackey and otherwise!

Most engaging posts this month (most comments and reactions):
1. At this moment in Slovakia.. 1gw.5vp
2. To clarify about the Sydnelson's card being shared
3. In Honor of our friend Fernando Cesar - Prince of Rio de janeiro
4. Ken Meyer Jr returns with more lovely art for Vampire: The Eternal Struggle!
5. Octane is one of the crypt cards in the upcoming …
6. So what to do with the new g6 Assamites or Banu Haqim as they prefer to be called nowadays?
7. Victoria Ash, preview Vampire: The Eternal Struggle art by Carmen Cornet.
8. Last Thursday (every Week) we have 6 player Table in Wels, Austria.
9. New strategy article by Tommi Hakomaa: How to play Tupdogs & Nephandus
10. Obituary: Sydnelson was the most fundamental pillar of our community…

Don´t forget that the VEKN.net forum is still around! Rules Questions and tournament winning decks ("Event Reports and TWD") are popular sections in the past month.


Black Chantry logo

BLACK CHANTRY SUMMARY: JULY 2021

  • The Unleashed Kickstarter is under delivery! The first lucky backers have received their products, others have to wait a bit. Black Chantry Distribution has been created to serve EU backers more easily.
  • The five Fifth Edition single decks (Malkavian, Nosferatu, Toreador, Tremere and Ventrue) are in stores since early July.
  • Previews for the next four preconstructed decks (Banu Haqim, Brujah, Gangrel and The Ministry) have begun (see above), but moving on slow, since the release date is sometime in late October/early November. The annual promo pack has roughly the same status – you saw a couple of previews in the June newsletter.
  • The second round of playtest of the Fall of London-themed mini expansion has concluded, and playtest coordinator Darby Keeney has produced a meaty report that is currently being digested by the designers. We´ll see if another round of playtesting is needed.
  • The design team is also working on a follow up expansion for the Fifth Edition clans. The format is still vague, but first drafts of some cards will be in playtesting soon.
  • The next batch of Legacy Card Singles for Drivethrucards has been templated and is now being proofread.

VTES Fifth Edition

Black Chantry VTES products

• Currently these Black Chantry products are available through Drivethrucards.com and other stores:

Do you have opinions or questions for Black Chantry? Start a topic on the VEKN forum, or contact the company by e-mailFacebookInstagram or Twitter.


Swansong Galeb
RECENT NEWS IN THE WORLD OF DARKNESS

  • Vampire: The Masquerade Swansong has a new trailer out for the Ventrue protagonist Galeb. The game is scheduled for release in Febuary 2022.
  • Paradox Interactive is looking for a freelance World of Darkness Community Ambassador - apply as soon as possible!
  • The World of Darkness News show has changed to a shorter format, and the main themes this month have been Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodhunt (July 2 and July 10), and Vampire: The Masquerade Out for Blood (July 16).


CALENDAR

Upcoming events:
VEKN still refrain from generally encouraging physical tournaments. Follow local regulations on what events are possible. Notice that online tournaments are possible - just note "ONLINE" in the event name when you add the event to the calendar!

For more information on upcoming events see the VEKN Event Calendar.

 

"Relax. No one else is knowing what they're doing either."