At the beginning of the year I set myself the task of coming up with some grand, epic events for the world of Vampire: The Eternal Struggle which could be played over the course of 2015.
Looking as usual to the role-playing game for inspiration, I came across a wealth of material concerning the crossover between Vampire: The Masquerade and Mage: The Ascension.
The Mage book Blood Treachery originally published in 2000 as part of White Wolf's 'Year of Revelations' explores the fact that some mages decided that a quick path to power was to steal the accumulated magical knowledge of vampires. And after dealing with vampires they discovered that Kindred vitae contained a magical essence which could be used in their own workings. A conflict then ensues between mages and Thaumaturgists which reaches - after facing mutual, assured destruction - something of a stalemate.
The Vampire book The Red Sign originally published in 2003 as part of White Wolf's 'Time of Judgement' puts forth the idea that a magical ritual might exist which when cast would return a vampire of any age to his or her original mortal self. This ritual is sought by a number of parties - some vampires yearn for their mortality, while others hope to emasculate their enemies. Mortal mages also seek the ritual, hoping either to restore the humanity of old friends, or to rid the world of the curse of vampirism.
I have already been speaking to Ben Peal and other members of the community about potentially expanding the role of allies within the game. Some of you may recall the Werewolf-themed Ragnarok event which I created for the European Championship in 2013, which I would deem to be a successful - although limited - experiment. I figure it's time now for something a little more ambitious.
The Red Sign will be a new Storyline running from 1st March to 31st August 2015 that will explore these narrative themes within V:TES. The Storyline will include a full set of new mage allies and new library cards usable exclusively by mages. The format will also include some new vampires, and an alternate win condition for each game. The cards and full rules will be published soon.
For this event I will be collating the game results - and feedback on the cards themselves - all of which will inform the future story of the game. The six-month time frame is intended to give each play group plenty of time to plan their events and perfect their deck designs. As per the last few events, this Storyline will be played in single games, and can be played multiple times by each group.
For those of you that will be at the European Championship in Warsaw in August I hope to see - and play in - at least one Storyline game using The Red Sign over the course of that weekend.