Gangrel Antitribu Newsletter

Official VEKN Gangrel-antitribu Newsletter Volume 3 Number 11 November 2000

In this Waiting-for-Sabbat War issue ....

FICTION: Ascendance
DECK: Path of the Feral Heart

FICTION: Ascendance

As the earth warms ferocious gales and floods are sweeping across
Southern England. The gales hardly bother the vampires at all, but floods
are a different matter, threatening their subterranean crypts, forcing
them up onto the dangerous surface. In Southsea the Cruel but debonair
Prince of the City is draped over a leather sofa reading an anthology of
World War I poetry and plotting his next move in the jyhad. The wind
batters at the turret window, sounding like disembodied fingers
scrabbling to be let in. For the moment the Eagle has only one enemy to
think about, a non-aggression pact with his predator having been formed
for the purpose of destroying this enemy, the Vile and Insane Prince of
Portsmouth. What is old leggy doing tonight, he wonders idly. No sooner
has the thought formed than his eyes dilate, his mouth opens slightly,
and his spirit wanders over the city, swift as the wind, penetrating
walls and floors to the inner sanctum where Legbiter hatches his
despicable schemes. Ah, he is reading too! My, what a pile of books,
forsooth! Let's see .... Golconda in Ninety-Three Easy Stages .... The
Little Book of Regaining Humanity .... How to be Merciful ..... Feng Shui
for better Ascendance .... Caine's blood and bones, the Old Fool has
finally lost it! EXCELLENT!!! Wasting his time with all that mystical
gobbledegook while wiser demons put their resources into slaves or the
stock market. The Eagle allows himself a little disembodied chuckle and
returns to his physical shell, confident of victory.

Out in the night, the minions of Legbiter, fortified by a massive dose of
their master's blood, are on the attack. Their enemies, distracted by
this raw display of Ancient power, are helpless as Rends-the-Treehuggers
stalks the Ventrue justicar to her lair and rips her head off. The coup
de Grace comes from Starweaver the outcast Mage, and by the time of
sunrise another episode of the Jyhad is over, with Legbiter triumphant.

This is the first and possibly only Card of the Month feature in this
newsletter, and it's a plug for what's generally seen as one of the worst
master cards in the game. i have been using it as part of my Cheapass
weenie allies/vote deck and have been having lots of arguments with John
Eagles about whether this card is worth having [his view being that Short
Term Investment is better]. i think the card is much better than he
thinks, or than i used to think. Furthermore, i think i can PROVE that it
is better than competing pool-gaining cards. Judge for yourself! The
following, hopefully self-explanatory [i just KNOW this will get chewed
up when it posts], table shows the cost/benefit ratio for the various
gain-pool-on-your-master phase master cards.

			[MPAs]		     		     [POOL + MPAs]

Ascendance      0		1		1		 1

Short-Term	1		4		3		 0.6

Investment	3		7		6		 0.6

Slave Auction
[5-player game]	1		6		5		 0.71

i'm willing to debate the equation of pool with master phase actions as
costs, but i would argue strongly that if you ARE going to put master-
phase pool-gain cards into your deck then they really OUGHT to be

OK, so Ascendance costs you no pool and one master phase action, and it 
gives you one pool. If you divide the benefit [1 pool] by the sum of the 
costs [0 pool + 1 Master Phase Action [MPA] = 1] you get 1. Short term 
investment costs you one pool and 4 master phase actions [1 to play it, 
3 to remove the pool]. You gain three from it. 3/5 = 0.6. Doing the same 
calculation for Protracted Investment you also get 0.6. Slave Auction for 
a 5-player game gives you 0.71. Ascendance, in short, is the most cost- 
effective pool-gain-on-your-master-phase card in existence.

DECK: Path of the Feral Heart

One of the preview cards from Sabbat War is Path of the Feral Heart, a
burnable master card that gives the !Gangrel an edge in playing Protean
cards. In its honour i've constructed the following deck, which aims to
get maximum mileage out of the card by using as many expensive Protean
cards as possible. Probably the deck is too unfocussed, but i certainly
think there are interesting future opportunities for the !Gangrel
implicit in this card.

CRYPT [12 cards]
3 x Genevieve
3 x Caitlin
3 x Sadie
3 x Monique

LIBRARY [90 cards]
3 x path of the Feral Heart
The Hungry Coyote
Campground HG
2 x Blood Doll
Minion Tap
The Rumour Mill
Pentex Loves You!
City Gangrel Connections
Legendary vampire
Tomb of Rameses III
Giant's Blood
Dreams of the Sphinx

Disciplineless [16]
Cardinal Benediction
3 x Kine Resources Contested
Ancilla Empowerment
2 x Consanguineous Boon
5 x Wake with Evening's Freshness
.44 magnum
Leather Jacket
2 x Cryptic Rider

Protean [16]
Horrific Countenance
Shadow of the Beast
2 x Shadow of the Wolf
2 x Rapid Change
2 x Uncontrollable rage
2 x Body Flare
2 x Wolf Claws
2 x Dissolution
2 x Earth Control

Auspex [12]
Pulse of the Canaille
2 x My Enemy's Enemy
2 x Enhanced Senses
2 x Spirit's Touch
Telepathic Misdirection
2 x Aura Reading
2 x Eagles' Sight

Animalism [12]
Army of Rats
4 x Rat's Warning
4 x Cat's guidance
3 x Carrion crows

Dominate [8]
2 x Grave Robbing
3 x Conditioning
3 x Deflection

Fortitude [8]
3 x Skin of Steel
3 x Skin of Rock

OK, this newsletter is slightly early because by tomorrow it will be
obsolete - Sabbat War pre-release tourneys will have been held, and by
next month i hope to have digested the set sufficiently to offer some
thoughts about how the Gangrel antis measure up in the transformed World
of Darkness! Until December, then, cheerio!