The Speed Shamblers deck archetype has had considerable success during the years 2006 to 2008 in the VTES tournament scene. With Amiel Feldman being the chief author of the deck, Olivier Perez has been the foremost player using this deck. Olivier’s tournament score card is quite impressive with tournament wins in the German and French ECQ 2006 and runner-up during the French Nationals 2007. With the rising popularity of Animalism combat decks and the ban of Memory of Mortality in 2008, the performance of Shambling Hordes decks in general have suffered quite a bit since then, but there not an unusual sight in VTES tournaments today.
The deck archetype is basically a Rush combat deck with the Shambling Hordes as its main weapon. The speed factor is due to the small deck size of 70 to 80 cards, and the recursion/tutoring technique from the Liquidation and Sudario Refraction.
The Malkavian ’94 deck is one of the earliest and still one of the most successful VtES deck archetype in existence. The name derives from the fact that the deck is around since the introduction of VtES (then known as Jyhad) in 1994. Since then it has seen little need for modification. The Malk ’94 deck archetype is also known as Malkavian (Obfuscate/Dominate) Stealth Bleed deck, which describes the type of deck more closely.
How to win with them
Here’s a short instruction manual for the deck — extracted from a TWD deck description:
“Keep it simple. Get out a bleeder as quick as you can and keep bleeding. If you bring out a vampire and you are bleed, bounce the bleed. If you get bounced and you are going to take out someone else’s prey, play Spying Mission.”
Celerity Gun (Cel Gun) is a deck archetype in Vampire: the Eternal Struggle. This deck type has been around for a long time, since there is an abundance of small- to mid-cap vampires with superior Celerity in the early expansions. Cel Gun is a classic Rush combat deck, that is its vampire take actions to attack the opponents vampires directly, i.e. by using Bum’s Rush or Haven Uncovered. It uses the combo Concealed Weapon and .44 Magnum to equip with these guns during combat, and then uses Celerity combat cards to inflict significant damage on the opposing minion. The deck ousts mainly by inflicting damage through Fame, Tension in the Ranks and/or Dragonbound.
How to win with them
Threaten your predator into submission (i.e. he doesn’t do anything against you). Usually you should be careful what kind of predator you let live. You need to kill a Stealth-Bleed/Powerbleed deck right away. No exceptions. When playing against Vote decks, you might need to kill one or two vampires w/ titles, to reduce the ability of the vote deck to dish out damaging votes. Toolbox decks or other combat decks which combat abilities you can trump, are only a small or no threat at all. Usually it’s a good idea to show your strength by crippling one or two vampires of your predator, so he’s both intimidated and busy while defending against his predator.
The Ventue Lawfirm deck archetype is along with the Malkavian Dominate/Obfuscate Bleed deck of the oldest existing (and successful) deck types in VtES. Lately the Ventrue Lawfirm has seen a tremendous comeback due to the new crypt choices that came along with the “Keepers of Tradition” expansion. The name derives from the Ventrue appearance as politicians and lawyers, and their ability to set and push a political agenda.
How to win with them
The deck has three angles with provide you with the necessary flexibility to adapt to the table dynamics in most cases. The deck can
“Weenie Animalism” decks, as the name of this VTES deck archetype suggests, are decks based on small (sometimes also mid-cap) vampires with the Animalism discipline (preferably in the superior version). The deck can be played as rush combat as well as intercept combat deck, but both use the same combat package consisting of a large number of Carrion Crows and Aid from Bats combat cards.
How to win with them
The deck’s strength lies in its cost efficient minions (and therefore often a sizable number of vampires), and a very effective combat package. There are quite a number of low to mid-cap vampires with superior Animalism, and Animalism on its own has some very efficient combat cards (see also Crypt Composition section below). Most notable in this deck archetype is the combat package consisting of Carrion Crows and Aid from Bats, of which the decks incorporates 10 to 20 each.
So the question is how to get in combat, so can you use all those Animalism combat cards? There are generally three ways of doing this:
- by bleeding consistently,
- by rushing other minions,
- by blocking other minions.
Inspired by the Bibiliodeque project launched on VEKN France, I want to update the existing posts on Deck Archetypes from the previous years. These updates will include basics like spell checking, a (hopefully) consistent formatting and updated deck links as well as content-related updates. I plan to post one updated Deck Archetype each week, starting with the Weenie Animalism deck as the first update on Tuesday.
Let me know, if you have an ideas for additional articles for certain deck types ..
The Deck of the Month for January/February 2015 is the tournament winning deck “Heart of Stone” by Mailton Silva (BRA). The deck is a block/rush combat deck based on the group 4/5 Gargoyles. I have chosen this deck, because you don’t see Gargoyle decks winning tournaments that often if these Gargoyles are not Tupdogs, and in contrast to the typical Tupdog deck, this deck has some decent intercept to stay in the game. The stars of the deck are Chaundice and Rocia, both having a useful combat special ability.
As usual, there were quite a few interesting decks beside the Deck of the Month in January & February. In each case, the decks are not your typical tournament winning powerhouses, but rather toolbox decks with cards that are from the latest expansions or with cards you see rarely at the final table of the tournament, let alone winning it.
- Giovanni mini powerbleed with goods by Lex Pike (USA) — what’s unusual about this deck is the extensive use of Shroud Mastery in this deck, as well as the first inclusion of Funeral’s Wake in a TWD. I regard Funeral’s Wake one of the better cards in The Unaligned, and I think we’ll see that card more often in finals, and not necessarily restricted to Giovanni decks.
- Vem para mim by Tiago Deividy (BRA) — this deck is actually an golden oldie, and is based on the combined use of Free States Rant & Temptation. What I like about the deck is that it remains toolboxish, that is it also uses other cards like Enticement & Entrancement or Disputed Territory to achieve its goals. And as said above, you don’t see it very often in tournaments anymore.
- Locksmith by Marko Lindroos (FIN) — The last deck is an Imbued deck, that doesn’t do its variation of Vigilance & Leather Jacket. I think, it’s really one of the very, very few Imbued decks, that uses cards minion cards requiring a Creed other than a Power card (or a Conviction). The main card of the deck is Lock, which is used to deprive opposing minions of their blood/life. Later in the game Unity allows to retrieve those Locks, that have been burned (or blocked). In this Lock is (indirectly) assisted by other cards like Hunger Moon or Vampiric Disease. Very nice indeed and rarely seen in this shape.