OFFICIAL VEKN GANGREL-ANTITRIBU NEWSLETTER VOLUME 7 NUMBER 12 DECEMBER 2004 ***************** In this tinsel-and-balls-bedecked goodwill-to-all-mankind issue ......... CHRISTMAS CRACKERS: Legbiter's pick of the seasonal games. DECK: Don't F*** With The Gangrel, by Jován Pavlovic LETTER TO THE EDITOR AND DECK: Second Amendment by Ankur Gupta. ***************** CHRISTMAS CRACKERS: Legbiter's pick of the seasonal games. Christmas comes but once a year, and when it comes it brings Good Cheer. Plus hangovers, constipation, and the Overwhelming Need to brutally slay all your relatives. At this festive season, therefore, you NEED to be able to withdraw into the harmless world of Gaming where the Slaying Thang does not attract the Wrath of the State so much. So here are Legbiter's top games of 2004, which you may either get for yourself or acquire for relatives. 1. Neverwinter Nights. Available for the PC and on Mac if you have system X, this is a stunningly good game with tremendous graphics and a LOT of humour and replay value. i am still on the basic game [Antsul Chopsalotapepl, 11th level LG Dwarf fighter takes a cautious bow here] but there are two expansions - Hordes of the Underdark and Shadows of Undrentide IIRC, both of which we have. This qualifies as a 2004 game because that's the year i discovered it, and thanks to Reyda for the tip [Reyda is a professional game reviewer as well as a top-class VTES player and all-round Good Guy, so if you want to know the real dirt on any given game drop him an email, is my advice]. Note that you should shed any prejudices you may have about electronic D&D when you think about NW Nights - this is *NOTHING* like the rather dim and clunky Baldur's gate and its sequels. If it is like anything then Diablo II is the closest i can think of. In at least some ways it is better than Diablo II. 2. Betrayal at House on the Hill. This is a board game in the tiles tradition [think Zombies!!!, When Darkness Comes] and similar to those games it is inspired by the pulp/B-movie tradition. While WDC is a terrific game, i think some legitimate criticism can be levelled at Zombies!!! for its inordinate slowness in >3-player mode and its failure [IMO] to be true to the Zombie movie genre [by which i mean that IMO you ought to become a zombie when you get killed in the game, rather than going back to the Town Square]. No such criticism can be made of BAHOTH, which is a truly exhilarating and reverential romp through the world of crappy and not-so-crappy horror. Of special note is the basic mechanic which has all the players as heroes at the start, one of them randomly becoming the Bad Guy once a given threshhold has been reached in the game, at which point the "Plot" [game winning conditions for both Bad Guy and remaining heroes] is revealed. Absolutely tip-top fun, you really, REALLY want this game. 3. Call of Cthulhu CCG from Fantasy Flight. This is a duel game but has some multi-player potential including a rudimentary predator-prey mechanic which might stop it degenerating into Kill the Leader [i have never played the multi-player version, but the rules are online and they look ok]. Excellent artwork, plays quite well, good atmosphere are its good points; heavily overpowered rares, execrable flavour text [except on Thrill Killer - incredibly, there are *NO* quotes from HP Lovecraft on ANY of the cards] and magic bullet solutions to card-overpower are the downsides. 4. Pirates of the Spanish Main from Wizkids. This is a collectible card game with a difference; the plasticated cards are kits with which to make ships. You get big ships and little ones, and there are three factions; the British [including, at this epoch, what is now the NE USA], Spanish [including what is now Spanish-speaking South America] and the Pirates. This is the cheapest game i am recommending this Christmas [roughly 7 USD/Euros per pack, about 5 GBP, and you only need 1 pack per player really] and a great stocking-filler, very visually-pleasing and easy to learn and play. ***************** DECK: Don't F*** With The Gangrel, by Jován Pavlovic This deck was played by Jován Pavlovic from Budapest in Hungary at this year's EC's side event, Silence of Death, a 20-ish player tournament. He got 4 game wins from 4 games with it. Containing as it does 3 copies of Wren and 1 each of the Black Spiral Buddy and Campsite HG it obviously deserves a spot in this newsletter, and should gladden the hearts of all old Rage players with its concentration on werewolf wonderfulness. Deck Name: Don't F*** With The Gangrel 3 Wren 3 Chandler Hungerford 3 Bear Paw 3 Mirembe Kabbada Master: 19 2 Ecoterrorist 2 Charisma 4 Blood Doll 1 Campground H.G. 1 Zoo H.G. 1 Fame 1 KRCG 1 Backways 2 Feral Spirit 3 Haven Uncovered 1 Sudden Reversal Action: 6 3 Form Of Corruption 3 Enticement Action Modifier: 7 4 Earth Control 3 Rapid Change Reaction: 10 2 Delaying Tactics 2 Pack Tactics 3 Guard Dogs 1 Speak With Spirits 2 Instinctive Reaction Equipment: 6 3 Laptop Computer 3 Meat Hook Combat: 16 4 Earth Meld 4 Form of Mist 4 Lucky Blow 3 Concealed Weapon 1 Claws of the Dead Ally: 11 1 Werewolf Pack 1 Black Spiral Buddy 2 Cry Wolf 2 High Top 4 Renegade Garou 1 Vagabond Mystic ************* LETTER TO THE EDITOR AND DECK: Second Amendment by Ankur Gupta. Hey, I have recently been playing the following deck which has done quite well in the games I've played here, sweeping a table, winning another, and tying a third. I'm sending it to you in case you'd like to include it in the newsletter. Anyway, thanks for the great newsletters! Ankur Gupta Prince of West Lafayette, IN ------------------------------------------------ Deck Name : Second Amendment Author : Ankur Gupta Description : Scattered Desert Eagle with Marbly Flesh for the WIN! Swap a Nimble Feet for a Sideslip in a tournament, maybe. Find room for a Shadow of the Beast. Crypt [12 vampires] Capacity min: 3 max: 8 average: 5.75 ------------------------------------------------------------ 2x Ellen Fence, the T 8 CEL OBF PRO aus bishop !Gangrel:2 2x Darrel Boyce, Cons 6 CEL OBF PRO !Gangrel:2 2x Skryta Zyleta 5 CEL obf pot pro !Gangrel:3 1x Hrothulf 8 CEL FOR PRE dom pot pro Ventrue:3 1x Zachary 7 CEL OBF PRO for pre !Gangrel:2 1x Steve Booth 5 CEL pot pre pro Brujah:3 1x Scarlet Carson O'T 4 CEL pro !Gangrel:3 1x Wren 4 cel obf pro !Gangrel:2 1x Sarah Brando 3 CEL !Brujah:2 Library [90 cards] ------------------------------------------------------------ Action  2x Arson 2x Bum's Rush 7x Flurry of Action 4x Games of Instinct 2x Harass 1x Sacrificial Lamb Action Modifier  5x Cloak the Gathering Ally  1x Mylan Horseed (Goblin) Combat  4x Acrobatics 2x Concealed Weapon 2x Disguised Weapon 7x Flesh of Marble 2x Magazine 4x Nimble Feet 6x Psyche! 6x Scattershot 4x Taste of Vitae 4x Trap Equipment  6x Desert Eagle 2x Laptop Computer Event  1x Dragonbound Master  6x Blood Doll 1x Campground Hunting Ground 1x Capitalist 2x Fame 1x Hungry Coyote, The 1x Tension in the Ranks 2x Twisted Forest 1x Vast Wealth Retainer  1x J. S. Simmons, Esq. Editor's note for non-Americans: the Second Amendment to the United States of America's Consitution is something about guns, i believe. ******************** And that's it for 2004! Around the Christmas tree at Legbiter Hall the Massed Ranks of the Gangrel Antitribu are busy getting Seriously Stottered. The Black Spiral Buddy is curled up in its new Christmas basket Dreaming of Slaughter and Incest, blissfully unaware that the Shadow Court Satyr has tied its tail and tongue together while it slept. Tiny Tim [who did NOT die, on account of becoming a vampire] is stomping around on his little withered leg, and all of us are thinking warm thoughts about all of you. Caine Bless us, every one, and see you in 2005! Address for correspondence: chopsalotapepl"at"yahoo"dot"co"dot"uk, or possibly yahoo"dot"com if that does not work. ?