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Judge's Notebook: Action Fizzling

Many of you have heard that an action can "fizzle," but what is that because it's not in the rulebook.
Recent posts

Customizing LackeyCCG

A lot of us use LackeyCCG to play Vampire: The Eternal Struggle online.  One of the most important things you can do to make the games run more smoothly is to customize your settings to improve your keyboard shortcuts.  In this quick post, I'll go over the keyboard shortcuts that I use and you can configure your Lackey to your own liking. Keyboard Preferences I'm sure most of you know that Lackey has keyboard preferences, but if not, they are available on the Preferences tab and the Key Bindings subtab. Lackey comes preconfigured with a variety of Key Bindings preset, but I don't actually like the default configuration.  I have eliminated several bindings and replaced many others.  If you'd like to update a key binding, simply put your cursor in the appropriate box and press whatever key combination you'd like to set it to.  Lackey will record that and display it as the selected key binding Avoid using Key Bindings that do no

Thoughts on the 2024 Tournament Season Updates

BCP recently announced errata and changes for this years tournament rules to coincide with the Ravnos, Salubri, and Tzimisce starter release date.  The new cards and the changes will be tournament legal on February 2, 2024. The Errata We knew this was coming as Black Chantry announced that there would be an announcement.  I even stirred up some controversy by posting some changes I'd like to see now that these have been settled.  That being said, here's my initial thoughts regarding these changes. Ashur Tablets As much I would have preferred BCP to ban Ashur Tablets, this is the errata that I expected them to settle on.  I had considered this approach several years ago before BCP began testing changes.  It seems to be a solid middle ground that guts MMPA decks without necessarily gutting other decks that use Tablets.  The Ashur race is now much more of a race.  Gone are the days of 18+ Tablets decks.  I expect decks to sit in the 6, sometime

My Watchlist

We know the BCP has a watchlist for cards that are under review for banning/nerfing.  With the upcoming changes to Ashur Tablets and Emerald Legionnaires announced, but not detailed, I thought I take a few minutes to talk about some cards that I feel are problematic in the game.  I'll forego any talk about the upcoming changes. (I don't know what they are and any more talk about those cards at this point is just tilting at windmills.) My Watchlist This probably isn't my full list, but it's what is on my top of mind right now, which means they're important enough to remember that I have problems with them and important enough to think about what we need to do about it. Veil of Darkness A card that Black Chantry must be concerned about because it wasn't even reprinted in Echoes of Gehenna. The effect is powerful, a permanent chance to cancel cards.  There may be some problem with the effect, which is never going to be applied evenly.  Some decks run more Master ca

How Variants Improve Skill: Applying What We've Learned

Well, that was a lot of decklists and a lot of minutiae. So, we're going to take a step back and review deck variants from a higher level. Some Basic Tenets for Variants Honestly, most of these apply to building decks from scratch too. 1. Understand what the original deck is doing. It may be obvious, but you can't play the original or hope to create a workable variant without first understanding how the deck works.  How does it intend to oust?  How does it intend to survive being ousted? Breaking down the deck into categories, similar to the way I broke down the variant comparisons will help you gain this understanding if you're struggling to sort it out.  Notice how some decks have polyvalent cards and how those cards end up in different categories.  That provides flexibility at play time. 2. Understand how you want to alter the original deck. There are many possible ways to create deck variants.  Switching groupings, changing clans, V5-

How Variants Improve Skill: Overview

A while ago, I was honored to participate in a survey of top players by Oriol Pubil ( BcnCrisis ).  He compiled and analyzed the results for his YouTube channel .  The first question that he asked in his survey was "How good is your deck building skill? (1 worst to 10 best)."  I responded with 7.  I honestly feel that there are many better deckbuilders than me.  However, that question got me thinking more about how I improved my deckbuilding skill over the years. The survey hit during the same period as the Week of Nightmares and Origins , so I was contemplating deckbuilding a lot as I saw what folks were playing.  For the Friday night tournament, I played a group 2 Setite (the old school guys will always be Setites to me) Death Star deck.  I won that event.  It was the third time that I've won with a Death Star deck and each with a different clan. That's when I realized one of the ways I got better at deckbuilding: don't cl

How Variants Improve Skill: Ravnos Example

Tow variants down and one last one to go. As we've seen previously with the Followers of Set and Daughters of Cacophony versions, adapting the Death Star to a new clan opens up new options. My Original Ravnos Version I never played this original version in a tournament. After a test of two and some more experience with the other designs, I realized that I had taken an incorrect approach. I won't make that many updates in the winning version, but what was I thinking trying to play Durga Syn in this deck? Deck Name: Shilmulo Death Star Author: Karl Schaefer Crypt (13 cards, min=4 max=30 avg=4) ==================================== 1x Durga Syn 9 CHI OBF THA ani aus dom for Ravnos:4 1x Alexis Sorokin 8 CEL CHI OBF PRO for Ravnos:4 1x Tatiana Stepanova, Alastor 7 CHI PRE ani for obf Ravnos:4 1x Vassily Taltos 6 aus cel chi dom for obf Ravnos:4 1x Irena