The VEKN Storyline co-ordinator, Mike Nudd, has released information about the VEKN’s current activity and future storyline events:
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.
On March 23rd, 2014 the Belgian VtES EC Qualifier was held in Brussels, Belgium, this time with 14 players from four different countries attending the qualifier tournament. The final standings after 3 rounds and the final were as follows:
1. Erol Hammer (GER) — 2 GW 7 VP — 3 VP — Lasombra G2/3 Obf/Dom Bleed/Vote
2. Dennis Devriendt (BEL) — 0 GW 2.5 VP — 2 VP — Brujah antitribu Vote
2. Johannes Walch (GER) — 2 GW 6.5 VP — 0 VP — Ahrimanes G2/3 Ally Toolbox
2. Bram Van Stappen (BEL) — 1 GW 4.5 VP — 0 VP — Osebo 419 Operation feat. Neighbour John
2. Ralf Weppner (GER) — 1 GW 4 VP — 0 VP — Kiasyd Stealth Bleed w/ Extras
Congratulations to Erol for winning the Belgian ECQ 2014. A tournament report with the tournament winning deck and a short recount of final round is available on vekn.net.
Today the VEKN has published a survey for the latest VtES expansion “Danse Macabre”:
Dear fellow Methuselahs,
It is 5 months after release of Vampire: Elder Kindred Network‘s first expansion for Vampire: the Eternal Struggle — Danse Macabre.
We believe it is enough time for the community to provide feedback regarding this set.
By answering this survey you are helping us to create even better expansions in the future, especially in situation that the next expansion is in progress.
Please answer the questions if possible. Please send information about this survey to all your friends that play VTES.
You can find the survey here:
Michal Kazmierczak “Migalart”
VEKN Marketing CoDirector
One of your local player had build a combat orientated deck around Dark Steel, Power of One and Hell for Leather. The deck had its moments during a few games, but ultimately lacked the performance to make it viable in its current state. The basic idea was to hit the opposing minions hard in combat using Dark Steel, Torn Signpost and Immortal Grapple. Perhaps once in a while you could weaken the enemy by playing Power of One when the opponent dared to block, killing minions like Carlton van Wyk or even Ponticulus right away. The icing on the cake would be playing Hell-For-Leather to inflict two pool damage (possibly in addition to a Fame). The crypt choice was based around Jacko and a couple of low-to-mid-cap Lasombra. And that was the problem, in my opinion. A lot of his vampires didn’t have superior Obtenebration and superior Potence, so making full use of Dark Steel was the exception not the rule. I was discussing with him what could be done about the deck in general and the crypt selection in particular. In fact, I was boasting that there had be a decent crypt with reasonably sized Lasombra vampires with both Potence and Obtenebration, if not with the group 2/3 Lasombra then for sure with the group 4/5 Lasombra. Boy, was I wrong ..
It turned out, that there’s isn’t a decent mid-range crypt for a Dark Steel-centered deck. In group 2/3 you have Talley, the Hound (capacity 6) and then there’s nothing, until you look at 9 cap vampires like Alvaro. Group 3/4 is even worse, the smallest vampire with POT/OBT having capacity 8 (Giangaleazzo and Conrad Adoula). The best you can get are three vampires of group 4/5 with Otieno (6), Lord Vauxhall (7) and Badr, Shadow of Granada (8). But even that is not really optimal, since none of the vampires has a special ability that’s really useful for a combat oriented deck, and then the capacity of these vampires are just too high for this kind of combat decks.
Compare this with the wide crypt selection you have when you’re playing Animalism deck based on Carrion Crows, the card that is probably best comparable to Dark Steel. There are a lot of 4 to 5 cap vampires with ANI, the group 3/4 vampires with Stick (3), Bobby Lemon (4), and Beetleman (4) standing out. Granted you don’t have the maneuver as with Dark Steel, but then it damages the opponent on close and long range, and it doesn’t require two superior disciplines.
I won’t advocate a change to Dark Steel, the card is generally fine. And what would you change? If you could deliver the two environmental damage on inferior Potence/Obtenebration and adding the maneuver on superior Obt/Potence, on the other hand, is probably too good for the small cap vampires. What it would need to make Dark Steel more viable for deck, is a couple of vampires with POT/OBT; either of lower capacity or having decent combat orientated specials.
Today the VEKN has published some information on the upcoming Independent-themed set for VtES.
Round Two of the Independent-themed set playtest is ongoing. We had a rather lengthy review process after Round One, with over 40 of the 70+ cards getting adjustments. A handful of cards were cut because they weren’t working out to our liking or to the liking of the playtesters, and we’ve replaced them with some new ideas. We’re still on track for a 70-card set: 9 crypt cards and 5 library cards for each of the 5 clans (Assamites, Gangrel, Giovanni, Ravnos, and Setites). Mid-round playtest reports are being submitted, and we’ll be concluding Round Two in a couple of weeks. One more round of playtest is planned after that. The release of the set will happen when the final adjustments to the cards are made and all of the artwork is completed.
The artwork is coming along nicely. We have twenty-five finished pieces submitted and three in progress. They’re all portraits for crypt cards, as crypt cards are easier to design and balance than library cards. We’ll start commissioning library card art after Round Two of playtest, and some will likely be commissioned based on the mid-round reports. We’ve recruited a new artist, Mark Kelly, for this set and we’re thrilled with the work he’s done. Most of the artists from Danse Macabre will be returning, as well. We’re more than happy to bring more artists on board, so if you know any you’d recommend, please let us know!
In addition, the V:EKN Marketing Team has prepared a survey about Danse Macabre. We’d love to get your feedback about that set, and the url for it will be posted soon.
— Ben Peal and the V:EKN Design Team
There are also two card art previews in the original posting on vekn.net.