file What are common mistakes you've seen when teaching new players?

31 Jul 2016 19:12 #77682 by self biased
The biggest thing thing that's hemmed up new players that i've seen is during stealth/intercept exchanges, they very often see +1 Stealth on an action card, and want to use that +1 Stealth. Perhaps a change in how included stealth is expressed on actions? wouldn't it be clearer if instead of [+1 Stealth Action] on a card it was just [1 Stealth Action] and the + was removed?

another thing i see that seems to be fairly common is that during combat, managing the flow is pretty tough, particularly Maneuvers and when certain strikes resolve.

what sort of things have you seen your new players stumble over?
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31 Jul 2016 20:21 - 31 Jul 2016 20:22 #77684 by Ankha

The biggest thing thing that's hemmed up new players that i've seen is during stealth/intercept exchanges, they very often see +1 Stealth on an action card, and want to use that +1 Stealth. Perhaps a change in how included stealth is expressed on actions? wouldn't it be clearer if instead of [+1 Stealth Action] on a card it was just [1 Stealth Action] and the + was removed?

another thing i see that seems to be fairly common is that during combat, managing the flow is pretty tough, particularly Maneuvers and when certain strikes resolve.

what sort of things have you seen your new players stumble over?

This is indeed a mistake I have observed too during initiations.

Originally (Jyhad), actions were written: "+1 stealth. Blah blah" and the rulebook stated "Stealth and intercept are opposed characteristics of minions, represented by a number. Stealth is a measure of a minion's ability to avoid detection and/or pursuit and intercept is a measure of the minion's ability to detect and/or pursue. Normally minions have a 0 stealth number and a 0 intercept number."
(emphasis mine)

So I guess that the designers had in mind that the minion, not the action, carried a stealth value and that's why some actions were giving "+1 stealth".

Current rulebook says:

" Stealth and Intercept. Conceptually, stealth represents the measures that the acting minion is taking to conduct his business discreetly, to avoid attracting the attention of those who would oppose him. Intercept represents the blocking minion's efforts to discover the plans of the acting minion and to stalk or chase him in order to detain him (by fighting with him) before he can accomplish his goal.
To see if a block attempt succeeds, compare the acting minion's stealth to the blocking minion's intercept. The action is blocked if the blocker's intercept is equal to or greater than the acting minion's stealth. By default, minions have 0 stealth and 0 intercept. So a block attempt will normally succeed unless the action has inherent stealth (such as hunting) or a card or effect is used to increase the acting minion's stealth.
Some actions have an inherent stealth, as noted in the action list (sec. 6.1) and on some action cards. The minion taking such an action starts with greater stealth than normal. Additionally, some cards and other effects can be used to increase a minion's stealth or intercept, as noted on card text."

I think there's a clever way to eliminate all ambiguity, but I haven't found a satisfying one yet.

Prince of Paris, France
Ratings Coordinator, Rules Director
Last edit: 31 Jul 2016 20:22 by Ankha.

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01 Aug 2016 06:43 #77692 by Ashur
Common mistakes:
1. Trying to tell too much at once. Try to have a strict plan, that introduces stuff in some logical order. I´ll post one that is kind of like that below, don´t remember where I stole it.
2. Having the wrong demodecks. There are two schools concerning this - either having 1) specially designed "demo decks" that are simple, or having 2) normal, competitive decks. I propose a mix: Use your least complicated yet competitive decks. For example various stealth-bleeders, Ventrue lawfirm, stealth-voters, grinders. Ideally these are decks with a straight focus and not a lot of complicated exceptions to general rules. Avoid rush-combat, walls, combo-decks, etc. But don´t get me wrong, those are important to introduce within shortly to show the diversity of the game, but try to wait at least a couple of games or so, if possible.
3. Being too many "tutors" at once. If you are more than one experienced player at the table, try to not talk in eachothers mouths. The risk is there are mixed messages and general confusion. Let one person be the primary teacher, at least in the beginning.
4. Not starting to play soon enough. Don´t lecture for more than say 10 minutes - begin playing instead, and take breaks when things come up.

Here´s the list I use:
1. Setup
- Key concepts: Library, crypt, pool (influence, pay), blood, zones
- Explain the significance of the 30 pool that the methuselah starts with
- Show difference in crypt cards and library cards
2. How to Win
3. How to play a master card (introducing concept of pool cost)
4. How to influence vampires
- Bring a vampire into play
- Describe parts of a vampire
- Briefly explain normal and superior abilities
5. Explain the turn sequence
6. How to take, and resolve, an action (first a simple bleed)
- Demonstrate a bleed
- Explain the edge
- Explain directed actions / prey / predator
7. Other actions; equip, rush, retainers, etc.)
- Perform a hunting action
- Explain action cards
- Equip weapons (1 vampire equips a ranged weapon that gives a maneuver, and other equips short range weapon)
- Explain why weapons are paid for from the methuselah’s pool
8. How to block
- Demonstrate blocking a bleed
9. How to resolve a simple combat (no maneuvers, strikes for hand damage)
- Demonstrate 1 round basic hand to hand combat
10. Stealth/intercept concept
- Explain stealth/intercept
- Demonstrate using stealth to prevent a bleed from being blocked
11. Action modifiers and reaction concept(s).
- Explain action modifier cards and why they are paid for from the vampire’s blood capacity
12. The absolute VTES timing rules (ie. there is no 'interrupting' another person's card play)

After this is clear (possibly during play):
Advanced combat
- Demonstrate combat at range
- Explain maneuvers/range/presses
- Explain torpor / getting out / diablerie
- Explain master cards / out-of-turn master cards
- Explain using master abilities cards and gaining blood capacity
- Employ a retainer
- Recruit an ally
- Explain the difference in retainers and allies
- Explain unique / contested cards
- Explain titles
- Demonstrate a vote

"My strategy? Luck is my strategy, of course."
The following user(s) said Thank You: Lönkka, Hakuron

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02 Aug 2016 13:30 #77726 by Hakuron

Common mistakes:
1. Trying to tell too much at once. Try to have a strict plan, that introduces stuff in some logical order. I´ll post one that is kind of like that below, don´t remember where I stole it.
2. Having the wrong demodecks. There are two schools concerning this - either having 1) specially designed "demo decks" that are simple, or having 2) normal, competitive decks. I propose a mix: Use your least complicated yet competitive decks. For example various stealth-bleeders, Ventrue lawfirm, stealth-voters, grinders. Ideally these are decks with a straight focus and not a lot of complicated exceptions to general rules. Avoid rush-combat, walls, combo-decks, etc. But don´t get me wrong, those are important to introduce within shortly to show the diversity of the game, but try to wait at least a couple of games or so, if possible.
3. Being too many "tutors" at once. If you are more than one experienced player at the table, try to not talk in eachothers mouths. The risk is there are mixed messages and general confusion. Let one person be the primary teacher, at least in the beginning.
4. Not starting to play soon enough. Don´t lecture for more than say 10 minutes - begin playing instead, and take breaks when things come up.

Here´s the list I use:
1. Setup
- Key concepts: Library, crypt, pool (influence, pay), blood, zones
- Explain the significance of the 30 pool that the methuselah starts with
- Show difference in crypt cards and library cards
2. How to Win
3. How to play a master card (introducing concept of pool cost)
4. How to influence vampires
- Bring a vampire into play
- Describe parts of a vampire
- Briefly explain normal and superior abilities
5. Explain the turn sequence
6. How to take, and resolve, an action (first a simple bleed)
- Demonstrate a bleed
- Explain the edge
- Explain directed actions / prey / predator
7. Other actions; equip, rush, retainers, etc.)
- Perform a hunting action
- Explain action cards
- Equip weapons (1 vampire equips a ranged weapon that gives a maneuver, and other equips short range weapon)
- Explain why weapons are paid for from the methuselah’s pool
8. How to block
- Demonstrate blocking a bleed
9. How to resolve a simple combat (no maneuvers, strikes for hand damage)
- Demonstrate 1 round basic hand to hand combat
10. Stealth/intercept concept
- Explain stealth/intercept
- Demonstrate using stealth to prevent a bleed from being blocked
11. Action modifiers and reaction concept(s).
- Explain action modifier cards and why they are paid for from the vampire’s blood capacity
12. The absolute VTES timing rules (ie. there is no 'interrupting' another person's card play)

After this is clear (possibly during play):
Advanced combat
- Demonstrate combat at range
- Explain maneuvers/range/presses
- Explain torpor / getting out / diablerie
- Explain master cards / out-of-turn master cards
- Explain using master abilities cards and gaining blood capacity
- Employ a retainer
- Recruit an ally
- Explain the difference in retainers and allies
- Explain unique / contested cards
- Explain titles
- Demonstrate a vote

This makes an awesome checklist to find out if a new player has learned everything necessary to stand on his own feet. :woohoo: Thanks, Henrik!

National Coordinator Germany
nc [dot] germany [at] magenta [dot] de

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03 Aug 2016 07:25 #77751 by Juggernaut1981
1) Information overload
2) The 'extra stealth' and 'no repeat play' rules
3) Play-Replace
4) The Path of 9000 Steps (aka Combat)

Remedies:
1) Dirt simple decks. Hand them some seriously one-dimensional Malk Cheese Bleed with about 8 different library cards and every library card can be played by basically every last Vampire. Combat is all super simple and usually strikes or weapons (say .44s or Deer Rifles)
2) Start mostly with stealthy decks, then try more wall-ish decks.
3) Try toolboxes
4) **DON'T PLAY TRUMPY COMBAT** If it's going to torpor vampires every second time you interact with it... it will just make the experience crap.
5) Have an older player 'sit out' and guide them through when you can.

:bruj::CEL::POT::PRE::tha: Baron of Sydney, Australia, 418
www.halflingcaravangames.com.au/

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03 Aug 2016 23:37 #77766 by JBurns
I have 4 DEMO decks that deal with mechanics. One for vote, one for bleed , one for combat and one for stealth. I normally start people with the stealth deck and then let them try another.

What i have noticed the problem they have is the timing of when to play cards like stealth and reaction etc.

I also agree with Ashur in don't take alot of time trying to explain the cards. I basically tell people to match symbols up Minion cards with Vampires.

James D Burns
Prince of Dupont(wilkes Barre)PA
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