Looking Behind, Looking Ahead

Hello again everyone. I realise that you have not heard much from me, and so please accept my apologies.

Other work and hobby commitments aside, I will freely admit that I have been devoting more time to working on new cards with Ben Peal in my role on the VEKN Design Team.

To an extent it is true also that it has been difficult to gauge the demand for Storyline material. When I was offered the role I was not given any particular mandate by the IC. At the NC meeting in Budapest in 2012 I said I would be glad to provide advice on World of Darkness ideas created by the community and would happily create events for anyone who asked but alas I did not receive any such requests from anyone over the following 12 months.

In my experience creating Storylines for the last two ECs I have come to the conclusion that many people do genuinely enjoy VTES Storyline, but they care far less about the creation or the results than they do about the playing. And faced with the uncertainty of our favourite game’s long-term future it is clearly more important than ever to keep people playing.

So for 2014, the 20th anniversary of VTES, I will be doing things a little differently. Firstly there will be an Anniversary Storyline, playable and available to all in the six months leading up to the next EC in Mannheim. Secondly, each month for the next six months I will be posting a) some suggestions for alternate VTES play formats, and b) some self-contained ‘stock’ Storylines for players to take and use in their own playgroups in their own time and at their own discretion.

Previous EC Storyline Results

Thank you to all players that participated in the previous events that I organised at the EC 2012 (Budapest) and the EC 2013 (Stockholm). Thanks also to those of you that took the time to submit your results to me.

Interestingly, for each event the majority of the games played did not lead to result submissions. I have taken this to mean that people were mostly interested in trying the alternate game format, and were less interested in the impact this had beyond the scope of the games that were played.

For the Budapest Storyline, the most submitted game wins were achieved by the Blood Brothers. In honour of this the Design Team is working on a new Blood Brother crypt card.

For the Stockholm Storyline there was no clear winning clan - in fact of the submitted clans none achieved more than 1 game win each. In consideration of this the Design Team has chosen to take forwards the Brunhilde Advanced crypt card that was offered as part of the event as a 'real' card. (You may also eventually see some of the werewolves again - but all in good time!)

Both of these cards are currently being playtested and will be made available for print and play as soon as they have artwork and are signed off by the Design Team.

2014 Anniversary Storyline – “The Returned”

Starting in April 2014, and running episodically each month for the six months leading up to the EC, there will be an Anniversary Storyline called "The Returned".

Each month, a special Mythic Vampire from the lore of the World of Darkness will be offered to the player base as a ‘thank you’ for continuing to play, support and promote the game.

As per the last two official Storylines, the format will be single games of V:TES where each player uses a Storyline legal deck (i.e. a crypt 75% of the same clan). The Storyline will also require you to keep a league table of game wins among your playgroup.

Any player who achieves at least one game win during the month will be permitted to use that month’s Mythic Vampire in deck construction for the remaining duration of the Storyline. E.g. a winner in month 1 (April) will be able to use the first Mythic Vampire released in any game over the next 6 months of Storyline games.

And at Mannheim any player attending the EC will be encouraged – regardless of league performance - to use any of the six Mythic Vampires in friendly games played during the course of the event (with the agreement of their opponents).

The first Mythic Vampire will be announced soon so watch this space!

Over to You

VTES now belongs to the player community and the Storylines that I create will always pale compared to the stories that you tell yourselves in your games with your friends.

Looking beyond the official tournament format I would encourage you to experiment with your own game formats and special rules to mix things up a bit.

And if you need ideas or help with creating your own Storyline for an event of any scale – local, national or regional - then I am only one e-mail or Private Message away.

I applaud and congratulate the efforts of Desso Alastor and the Brazilians in the creation of their ‘War For Territory’ event. This inspires me and it should inspire you too.

For now, happy bleeding.

Mike Nudd
VEKN Storyline Co-ordinator