Gangrel Antitribu Newsletter

Official VEKN !Gangrel Newsletter Volume 6 Number 9 September 2003.


In this End-of-Summer Issue .......
FICTION: Legion of the Damned 
VTES HOLIDAY SNAPS/LISBON [more vampire tourism]
DECK: Gangrel Serpentis combat [a tourney-winning deck by Jim Suh].

FICTION: Legion of the Damned*

"Arnold of Breschia, you have been found guilty by this conclave of
the heinous sin of heresy, and of obstinate refusal to recant your
dreadful errors in denouncing the Church's holding of property. Your
wickedness having been further compunded by your shunning of any food
that is not blood, you will be taken forthwith to the ruined Temple of
the heathen Diana outside this court, where you will be burned at the
stake. Have you any final deposition to put before us?"

The hooded inquisitors' masked faces turned towards the slight chained
figure before them. The hideous tortures to which he had been
subjected seemed not to have marked him, body or soul, and he smiled
slightly, shaking his head and folding his hands.

"Then take him hence."

Burly men-at-arms grasped his elbows and propelled him out into the
shadowy square where the temple stood. The eastern sky was slowly
lightening, and Arnold of Breschia looked thoughtfully in that

"This way, father, if you please."

The condemned heretic allowed himself to be attached to the stake,
still with that odd little smile on his face. To the executioner and
his crew Arnold seemed to glow internally, with a brightness that
mirrored the approaching dawn.

"I'm truly sorry about this, Sir. I can arrange matters so that there
will be no pain, if the Holy Father desires?"

Arnold of Breschia shook his head, a beatific expression on his
strangely-illuminated face.

"Bless you my son, but that will not be necessary. Now my dear sons,
in God's name i beg you to withdraw some paces while i pray. And when
the event occurs, please be so good as to recite a prayer for my soul.
Whilst you do so, be sure that no ill can befall you or yours."

The executioner bowed, and signalled his party to withdraw. Arnold of
Breschia looked around at the living world for the last time, and then
bent his head to pray. The inquisitors came out onto the porch to
watch, and now all could see the increasingly bright glow emanating
from the heretic's body. Suddenly the morning sun shone into the
square and there was a puff of flame: the watchers gasped, for no fire
had been set, and the flame came from within the condemned man's
habit. In seconds Arnold of Breschia's form was entirely shrouded in
flame and steam, as the blood boiling within him streamed down onto
the pyre. The executioner and his men began to pray quietly for the
dying man's soul, whilst the inquisitors watched, unmoved. The
steaming blood flowed down the pyre and into the cracked masonry of
the platform, which seemed to groan piteously in response.

A minute later, and all was over .... or wait, what was that? A
straining, cracking sound came from the platform where the blood and
dusty ashes of Arnold of Breschia were settling. Fragments of masonry
spattered away from the base of the pyre, and then the pyre itself
began to topple, falling forward into the square, where it continued
to smoulder. And then, somewhat concealed by smoke and steam, figures
could be seen, struggling free of the platform, skeletal figures
rustily armed and armoured after the fashion of Roman Legionaries.
Stiffly they climbed down, assembling in good order on the square.
Ignoring the frantically-praying execution squad they drew their
gladii, wheeled and began to march purposefully towards the
inquisitors, some of whom had the wit to try to flee. These the
ancient Romans struck down with their heavy pilums, striking them in
the legs so that they were still alive when they came upon them. Of
all that happened when the Legion caught up with the inquisitors the
only living witnesses were the execution party, and they were
unwilling to talk of it. Certain it is that once it was over no trace
of the Legion or of Arnold's judges was ever seen again, except
perhaps for a smear of blood on the outer wall of the court, which
spelled out in Latin the biblical phrase:

"Judge not, that ye be not judged."

*[dark-age-ish fiction inspired by the Temple of Diana at Evora, the
life and death of Arnold of Breschia, and the Undead Romans in the
Russian game Legion of the Damned by Zvezda]


This newsletter is a trifle late because we are only just back from
Lisbon, where we had a jolly good time as usual. Sadly we did not
manage to meet up with Luis Duarte and our other old friends from
Lisbon, but we did get to meet some new friends in the form of Bruno
Robalo, Sergio and Pedro who very kindly entertained us in Bruno's
MASSIVE games room. We only had time for one game in which i went
fourth, and used my version of the turbo-Baron deck to bleed Bruno,
who was playing a Daughters/Ventrue vote deck; Pedro was next, playing
a Tremere deck; then Anklebiter playing Kiasyd/Lasombra; then Sergio
bleeding Lady Legbiter, both of whom played Tzimisce decks [happily
enough, no contesting issues occurred]. Usually the turbo-Baron fails
in 6-player games because it runs out of cards but this time it
didn't, and in fact i all-but-swept [Michael got the other VP]. Great
game, and thanks to all three gentlemen for their kind hospitality!

Bruno and co are setting up a gaming shop to the North-West of Lisbon
and this meant they had to work, which made it difficult for us to fix
a date for them to obtain their revenge and/or be shown the basics of
classic Rage [for which they had IMO wisely obtained some cards]. So
that will have to wait for our next visit, and i wish them the very
best of luck with the new shop.

We did however manage to venture a bit further afield this trip,
getting as far as Cascais in the west and Evora in the east. Both were
interesting in different ways.

Cascais is absolutely lovely, a real seaside town with some cracking
gift shops selling mummified fish, wooden WW1 aircraft and elaborate
shell mobiles, plus all-day English breakfast and fish 'n' chips. This
should not put English-speakers off from visiting Cascais, which
appears to have been discovered by the NICE kind of English-person.
Having said that, when in Portugal and at the seaside you should eat
not fish 'n' chips but grilled sardines [as any fule no], and you
should sprinkle them with olive oil. The sea at Cascais is FRIGHTFULLY
cold, i think it only right to add.

Evora is odd, not perhaps as splendidly mad as Sintra but definitely
veering in that direction with its Chapel of Bones, teensy-weensy
University, Temple of Diana and jumble of late Roman and early
artillery-age fortifications. i bought a super cork Iberian-style
windmill which is the right scale for Flintloque, and resolved to
paint my Al-Garvey goblins for that excellent and neglected game in
the correct Portuguese Napoleonic colours of khaki, black and yellow.

This colour-scheme can be checked by visiting the Military Museum in
Lisbon, which is interesting but slightly odd in having no major
exhibits about the decolonisation wars which led to the Portuguese
revolution. Perhaps a sore topic? There was a sad little display built
around a Portuguese soldier who was killed when the Indians reclaimed
Goa, but nothing else at all. On the other hand there were quite a lot
of oil-paintings about Portugal's disastrous involvement in WW1, and
that was useful from the modelling point of view: Portuguese soldiers
of that time had light blue uniforms with light khaki webbing and
British-style steel helmets. A Portuguese division was, of course,
right opposite the spearhead of the April 1918 German offensive which
so nearly won that war for the Central Powers. Sarah's collaborator
Cecilia's grandfather was in that division, and distinguished himself
by acquiring cabbages from no-man's-land. This showed a proper
seriousness about the important things in life i feel, for the
Portuguese are good at food; whole crab and goose-barnacles were other
culinary highlights of this visit.

Also amazing is the Lisbon Oceanarium at the old expo site, our second
visit but like the ocean, always new.

And so back home! Thanks again to those Portuguese players whom we
managed to meet and apologies to those we missed; next time i promise
to be more efficient about notifying people of when we are coming and
where we will be. See you all next year, i hope!


DECK: Jim Suh's Gangrel Serpentis combat

Mattt Stockton in our group is always promising to make Setite combat
work, a promise at which we have all been wont to jape and mock with
many a mop and mow, but as it turns out the joke is on us. Here is the
evidence: a Jim Suh creation which is not exactly Setite combat but
Serpentis combat/takeover, and good enough to win a tourney in one of
the Citadels of the great game. This is a marginally-edited repost of
Lasombra's announcement of the winning deck; i'll point out that the
deck is storyline legal and has a significant Gangrel-antitribu
component if you take this Newsletter's editorial view that non-Camarilla 
Gangrel count as antitribu.

Elder Intervention
Atlanta, Georgia
August 30th, 2003
15 players

Tournament Winning Deck by Jim Suh

Deck Name: Setites can kiss my ra
Created By: Jim Suh
Description: How did this deck win? Luck.

Crypt: (12 cards, Min: 13, Max: 32, Avg: 5.50)
4 Nadima ani aus FOR PRO SER 8, Gangrel
3 Mirembe Kabbada ani PRO SER 5, Gangrel
1 Hesha Ruhadze ani obf pre SER 6, Followers of Set
1 Ramona for pro 4, Gangrel
1 Ramona (ADV) for pro 4, Gangrel
1 Chandler Hungerford PRO 3, Gangrel
1 Sadie pro 2, Gangrel Antitribu

Library: (90 cards)
Master (13 cards)
4 Blood Doll
2 Depravity
1 Dreams of the Sphinx
2 Ecoterrorists
1 Gangrel Revel
2 Guardian Angel
1 Zoo Hunting Ground

Action (17 cards)
2 Bum's Rush
4 Form of Corruption
2 Harass
2 Nose of the Hound
1 Ritual Challenge
6 Temptation

Action Modifier (1 cards)
1 Kiss of Ra, The

Reaction (10 cards)
8 Forced Awakening
2 Wake with Evening's Freshness

Combat (46 cards)
3 Bone Spur
3 Claws of the Dead
9 Flesh of Marble
4 Form of Mist
4 Gleam of Red Eyes
10 Skin of the Adder
4 Taste of Vitae
4 Trap
5 Weighted Walking Stick

Retainer (3 cards)
3 Raven Spy

[Editor's note: i might be tempted to slip in a Dog-pack instead of
one raven, and maybe Heidelberg castle for something i haven't decided
upon, but much would depend on the metagame].


And that's it for September! We shall be at the Bath storyline
tournament, so will see some of you there. Sadly we will miss Watford,
because Sarah has been offered a permanent job in Newcastle, and we
are going up that weekend to have a look round and to see if they can
give me one, too; and also we will miss London because it clashes with
our monthly SparkesCon. Obviously we will try to hook up with Anam and
Ian whilst in Newcastle. See you all in October!