V:EKN Clan Gangrel Antitribu Newsletter, March 1999 Official VEKN Gangrel anti Newsletter Vol 2 number 3 March 1999 IN THIS ISSUE ....... FICTION: THE WILD HUNT [more sadistic cruelty from the annals of Legbiter] ALLIES - THE HELLHOUNDS THAT DID NOT BARK IN THE NIGHT [musings on a strategy that ought to work, really] FICTION: THE WILD HUNT Night falls in the New Forest, which is neither new nor a forest .... William the Bastard established his exclusive hunting ground [old french: Foray] here after the Norman conquest in 1066, so it was new to the Anglo-Saxons. A horn sounds, and there is a jingling of harness ... under the beech trees ghouled horses snort and stamp, and on their backs are the Vampire Hunters, resplendent in their Hunting Pinks. Ah, here comes the pack! Aren't they MAGNIFICENT? For Black Spiral Dancers, i mean ... good Rends-the-Treehuggers! Down boy! Dear old Craps-on-Sidewalk! Snarls-at-Postmen and, um, Paints-the-Lamposts, isn't it? Good doggies all! Ah, yes, better not get TOO close to them, my dear, they, erm, bite. As you see. Or saw. O dear. Ah well, there's plenty more where she came from. Now, Master of the Hounds, what do you have for us tonight? A Caitiff earth behind Minstead, you say? Perfect! Come Ladies and Gentlemen, let the Hunt begin! Out of the trees we ride and onto the moor .. through park and brake, over streams and fences, the wind in our hair and the belling of the Werewolves ahead. And ahead of that, running for their unlives, the disposable progeny i created for this very purpose! I always pick good specimens for this, y'know .. joggers, athletes, soldiers .. makes the sport SOOO much more interesting, doncha know! Ahah, the first of them brought to bay .. that's right, hold him my lads, but don't rip him, not yet! Hullo dear boy, remember me? Now, you know the old hunting song about John Peel? Well, now i'm going to show you why they call me Peel ..... damme, where did i put that flensing knife ... excellent, thank you Pieter that will do nicely!
Now, who is new to the hunt here? Sadie, stop that silly retching and come over here. .. there ... we call that blooding! I DO love these old traditions, don't you? OK Master, the hounds can feed now ..... Back on horseback, and on with the hunt. I kind of hope that whatsername, Marianne escapes again tonight. LOVELY blue eyes, she had, and the SWEETEST French accent ... the vampires ride away, and coming across the fields, fainter and fainter, we hear Legbiter's pleasant baritone singing .... "..... from a view to a death in the morning." ALLIES - THE HELLHOUNDS THAT DID NOT BARK IN THE NIGHT The Virgin store in Oxford is selling off Ancient Hearts boosters at 0.99GBP, and so i bought a load of cards and had a merry time ripping boosters and eating Thai food when i went to visit Lady Legbiter a couple of weeks back. Looking through the cards it became apparent to me for the first time that AH was MEANT to give a massive boost to allies and retainers and, to a lesser extent, equipment. As proof of this, consider Purity of the Beast and the wallpaper Serpentis cards .. the designers were so sure that allies were going to clean up that they shoved in "Magic Bullet" cards to counter them! However, as we all know, the intended boost to allies largely failed, and so for the last fortnight i have been wondering why ... is it really because the allies are so crap, or are we all so hypnotised by our own rhetoric that we are missing a new strategy? Is it possible that the other, successful, aim of AH [to boost big vamps, through ToR3 and RtI] was just SOOO brilliant that no-one's actually TRIED to explore the allies strategy? I have to confess that i do not have the answers to this, but i'd like to advance the following thoughts for your consideration. Allies that can bleed are a dam' fine investment, in principle - cheaper than vamps with equivalently-decent powers, marred only by their fragility ..... and that's not TOO big a problem if you pack Compel the Spirit. Think of it this way: an ally who can bleed is like an Embrace and an equip in one action .... not bad value! In a Giovanni deck with Compel the Spirit the two mummies, the Terrorists, the Mages from the original set and Scapelli ought to be really good. Alright, maybe not the two mummies since they never go to the ash-heap and so can't be Compelled ... but let's say a Gio/Tre/!Tre deck and broaden out the allies to include Nephandus and Succubus .... even [bow in the direction of the ostensible purpose of this newsletter] put some !Gangrels in and include the Shadow Court Satyr. This deck would be an otherwise-disciplineless NEC/tha bleed-and-bash weenie deck , and you would pay for the allies using Ascendance, Tribute and Blood Doll/hunt, and have a few Memories of Mortality and a LOT of Brainwash to scupper any big vamps that might be genuinely capable of hurting your allies. Allies are immune to many effects that target vampires ... the torporising effect of aggravated damage being one, but also Rotschreck, Terror Frenzy, Frenzy, Drawing out the Beast and Daring the Dawn. Their immunity to DoTB really makes weapons for allies a worthwhile consideration, Talbot's Chainsaw and Ambrosius being, these nights, the obvious one, but there are others too .... Is this practicable? Do i have a deck that implements these ideas and works? i don't know and not yet are the answers, but i may do by next month ... and there is a good allies deck on the NG quite recently, though to my shame i can't quote the article or remember who made it. In the meantime i chuck out the idea for anyone to develop as they see fit .... experience seems to show that this is less of a constraint to people's creativity than just slapping down a deck. If i get it to work i will post it to John Baker's Giovanni NL, so watch that space! OK, that's it for another month. Seey'all in April! The Cruellest month, according to TS Eliot, and therefore DEFINITELY a Legbitery favourite!