In general, a Turbo deck is deck archetype which burns a copy of the same vampire, reincarnates via the Soul Gem of Etrius, and repeats this sequence of actions over and over again. The main purpose is that the last action is a big bleed, and this will – repeated multiple times in a turn – kill every prey, even sometimes more than one in a given turn.
How to win with them
There are several boundary conditions for this deck which need to be met:
- need to equip with the Soul Gem of Etrius.
- need to increase the capacity by at least one.
- need to (nearly) empty the blood from the vampire.
- need to multi-act.
The first condition can be met by cards which allow to search for a particular equipment card in your library, and put it either in your hand or equip right away. Most commonly used is Vast Wealth, but also possible choices are Drop Point Network, Inconnu Tutelage, Magic of the Smith or Sybil’s Tongue.
The second condition is by far the most restricting condition, increasing one capacity is not easy to do without a Master card. But Master cards are out of question, since the goal of the deck is to repeat the burn-reincarnate cycle multiple times within one turn. Options for increasing the capacity of a vampire include Reliquary: Akunanse Remains, Camarilla Vitae Slave and several Praxis Seizure votes.
Getting the blood of the vampire is relatively easy: the Freak Drives do cost, the Force of Will action cost a blood. But this isn’t usually enough, so some additional actions are required, preferably those that cost two blood (or more) like going Anarch (two blood), Embrace (two blood), Procurer or Neighborhood Watchcommander. The later three have the advantage of getting additional minions in play.
After the vampire has been influenced out to the ready region, the typical sequence of actions for a Turbo deck is this:
- Equip with the Soul Gem of Etrius
- Freak Drive
- Increase the capacity by one.
- Freak Drive
- Use one or more actions to remove the blood from the vampire if necessary.
- Use Force of Will to bleed, the damage and the blood paid for action modifiers must be enough to burn the vampire, thus triggering the Soul Gem’s effect and bring out a new copy of the vampire.
The choice of vampires is driven by the third condition, increasing one’s capacity, and the fourth condition, the superior Fortitude required for the proper use of Freak Drive. Also it is recommended that the vampire has access to stealth, otherwise the likeness of actions being blocked increases dramatically. Obfuscate is the obvious choice, but Obtenebration or Necromancy also work.
All of this is virtually neglected, since the deck relies only on the Turbo trick with the Soul Gem.
How to win against them
Deflection or other bleed bounce cards only help partially since the Turbo deck will repeat the bleed action multiple times each turn, so the number of Deflection in your hand isn’t usually enough.
Intercepting actions (if possible at all) helps only in a limited way. The most important action to block is the action to equip the Soul Gem itself, thus preventing the most important requirement for the burn-reincarnate cycle. After the key vampire has the Soul Gem and you have intercepted him, you need to sent him to torpor with as little blood as possible. Otherwise the Turbo vampire will just rescue himself and try to restart the cycle.
Direct Intervention helps only partially, it has to be either on the Freak Drive or the Force of Will since this both interrupts the ability to continue/completed the required set of actions. On the other hand the DI will only stop the Turbo deck for one turn, next turn it will try to start its Turbo again.
Otherwise anything that helps remove the Turbo vampire from the game or if he changes owner, i.e. Graverobbing him or playing a Hostile Takeover kills the deck instantly, since the key figure is missing (and is not replaceable).
The Turbo deck is almost defenseless against all sorts of offensive actions, but it needs to be taken down quite soon.
- Soul Gem of Etrius — the key equipment for the burn-reincarnate cycle.
- Vast Wealth — most commonly used for fetching a equipment from the library to your hand.
- Force of Will / Daring the Dawn — both cards aggravated damage on the acting vampire can be used to burn the vampire. Usually Force of Will is preferred, since it can be played by a tapped vampire (saving a Freak Drive), and gives an additional +2 bleed.
Notable Examples & Variations
Traditionally, there are three types of Turbo decks, named after their main vampire, but new variants are coming up as soon as another way of increasing a vampire’s capacity are released:
- Turbo Arika by Philippe Lang — uses a Praxis Seizure vote and Awe to push the vote through and lose the blood simultaneously.
- Turbo Lucita by Andrea “RaVa TwO FaCeS” Ravera — uses the Camarilla Vitae Slave to increase her capacity.
- Turbo Baron by Erik Torstensen — works somewhat differently than the other turbo decks. It does not feature a complete crypt of the same vampire, but instead a diversified crypt with one Baron as it’s key vampire. Instead of reincarnating himself using the Soul Gem, the Baron brings up a second vampire which inherits the Soul Gem and uses his superior Necromancy to play a Possession to bring back the Baron from the ash heap. The Baron then takes the Soul Gem back from the new vampire and immediately uses Force of Will to repeat the cycle. Since the deck only features a single Baron in the crypt, the deck uses Coroners Contact to search for the “Baron” in the crypt.
- Turbo Amavi by Lasombra — the latest addition of the Turbo deck uses Reliquary: Akunanse Remains to increase Amavi’s capacity.
- Spiridonas Soul Bleeder by Christian Chénard — not a “true” Turbo deck since it cannot repeat the burn-reincarnate cycle more than once a turn, on the other hand Spiridonas special ability lets him bleed for huge amounts.