Black Chantry is releasing a new set of demo decks, New Blood. Like First Blood, there are five decks with the same clans as the Fifth Edition boxed set: Malkavian, Nosferatu, Toreador, Tremere, and Ventrue. Let's take a look and see how the first of these decks measure up for new and established players alike.
New Blood: Malkavian
Black Chantry describes it as a "toolbox that mixes bleeding and political actions." Malkavians playing politics? This is atypical unless Lutz is involved. Here, we have an a nice mix of bleed and political actions. With easy access to stealth, we should expect most of them to succeed. With most clans having access to bounce and with such a plethora or titles, however, will the bleeds hit the right target or will the referenda actually succeed?
Well, not everything should succeed. Real games are often full of failure, bounced bleeds, and torporized vampires.
As a Demo of the Game
This deck is a really nice demo of the game. It features politics and bleed. It has stealth to make things successful. The reaction package is typical: bounce. Some of it can be used for intercept, but Malkavians rarely like combat, so that's an option best left for something that must be blocked.
This deck should stack up well agains the other starter decks. With at least transient intercept in every deck, the Malks may get blocked, but their stealth package is good and the payload is solid (for the demo games).
Evan Klein (discussed below) has a troublesome special for a demo environment. It's something that I expect experienced players to struggle with. As such, I would probably tell players checking out the game to ignore his special until they have more experience.
For New Players
- Very solid card. Being able to remove a key piece of equipment or a key location can be critical to long term success.
- Forgotten Labyrinth
- Perfect for stealth voters.
- Malkavian Justicar
- The bonus votes make this easier to pass. After it passes, having extra votes in Fifth Edition's vote rich environment will help too.
- Scouting Mission (also in the Tremere)
- Yes, this is Govern the Unaligned's little brother. This is generally considered weaker and rarely played. Perhaps more useful in a modern Law Firm deck or in a deck with smaller vampires, so that you don't need to worry about refilling their lost blood.
- Secure Haven
- The ultimate defensive option for decks that want to keep someone alive. Anyone building the unnamed will surely pick up this deck just for this card.
- Telepathic Vote Counting
- Vote cancelation has never wowed VTES players in the same way that vote push does. Push might get you by more than one vampire's votes, but cancelation is only going to solve one problem. With the increase in transient votes from cards like Protected District, the ability to cancel a referendum and call it again later may have more appeal than it used to.
- Threats (also in the Tremere)
- Yes, this is Conditioning's little brother. This is good much for the same reasons as Scouting Mission. I do like it for Giovanni powerbleed decks that spend so much blood in general.
New Blood: Malkavian Mash-Up
Deck Name: New Blood: Malkavian Mash Up Author: Karl Schaefer Description: A probably not good enough deck. Blood Dolls are too slow for this deck and we really need Govern the Unaligned to bring up extra bodies more quickly. I suspect that test runs will prove that more Parity Shift is worthwhile. Yes, two The Barrens. You can get rid of the second one easy enough. You need to be able to cycle through the deck properly, so getting this resource early enough will be critical. Secure Haven goes on someone without OBF (maybe). You (hopefully) have enough No Trace to handle other problems. Crypt (12 cards, min=18 max=30 avg=6.0) ======================================= 2x Alexander Silverson 8 pre AUS DOM OBF prince Malkavian:6 2x Jason "Son" Newberry 7 pre AUS DOM OBF Malkavian:6 2x Andi Liu 6 aus obf pre DOM prince Malkavian:6 2x Donny Kowalczyk 6 obf dom cel AUS prince Malkavian:6 2x Evan Klein 5 aus dom pre OBF Malkavian:6 2x Dr. Stephen Norton 4 aus OBF Malkavian:6 Library (73 cards) ================== Master (9) ---------- 2x Barrens, The 4x Blood Doll 2x Elysium: The Palace of Versailles 1x Secure Haven Action (5) ---------- 1x Conceal 4x Scouting Mission Political Action (15) --------------------- 2x Anarchist Uprising 7x Kine Resources Contested 2x Malkavian Justicar 4x Parity Shift Action Modifier (25) -------------------- 3x Cloak the Gathering 3x Elder Impersonation 4x Faceless Night 2x Forgotten Labyrinth 3x Lost in Crowds 2x Old Friends 4x Telepathic Vote Counting 4x Threats Reaction (15) ------------- 4x Deflection 4x Eyes of Argus 4x Telepathic Misdirection 3x Wake with Evening's Freshness Combat (4) ---------- 4x No Trace
Fifth Edition-New Blood: Malkavian Mash-Up
Deck Name: V5-New Blood: Malkavian Mashup Author: Karl Schaefer Description: Ask Ben Peal, the original is already good. That being said, I've added a little safety by bringing in No Trace and Secure Haven. The Elder Impersonation will ensure actions succeed. I reduced the stealth a little, but left all Faceless Night. That card is too good for follow-up actions. Running the double The Barrens again. Swapped in two votes. The Justicar vote to increase random vote counts for you and Anarchist Uprising. You want the table to have less pool all around. I dropped everyone from the crypt without Dominate in favor of the new vampires. Upped Alexander to ensure that the early Govern chain works as intended (greater chance at least). Use Gilbert Duane (G6) instead, if you have him. With 3x Alexander Silverson and 2x Donny Kowalczyk, I'd love a second Wider View to compensate, but we don't have one. I never really liked Revelations here, so I dropped them. If you love them, certainly add them back. Crypt (12 cards, min=17 max=31 avg=6.0) ======================================= 3x Alexander Silverson 8 pre AUS DOM OBF prince Malkavian:6 2x Donny Kowalczyk 6 obf dom cel AUS prince Malkavian:6 1x Jason "Son" Newberry 7 AUS DOM OBF pre Malkavian:6 1x Andi Liu 6 aus obf pre DOM prince Malkavian:6 1x Gelasia Fotiou 6 obf pre AUS DOM Malkavian:6 1x Colette 5 dom AUS OBF Malkavian:6 1x Evan Klein 5 aus dom pre OBF Malkavian:6 1x Sully 4 aus dom obf Malkavian:6 1x Ashley 3 dom obf Malkavian:6 Library (77 cards) ================== Master (13) ----------- 1x Asylum Hunting Ground 2x Barrens, The 5x Blood Doll 1x Dreams of the Sphinx 2x Life in the City 1x Secure Haven 1x Wider View Action (12) ----------- 12x Govern the Unaligned Political Action (2) -------------------- 1x Anarchist Uprising 1x Malkavian Justicar Action Modifier (25) -------------------- 4x Bonding 3x Cloak the Gathering 2x Conditioning 2x Elder Impersonation 4x Faceless Night 2x Foreshadowing Destruction 3x Lost in Crowds 3x Spying Mission 2x Threats Action Modifier/Combat (3) -------------------------- 3x Swallowed by the Night Reaction (20) ------------- 5x Deflection 5x Eyes of Argus 5x On the Qui Vive 5x Telepathic Misdirection Combat (2) ---------- 2x No Trace
For Established Players
- Evan Klein
A 5-cap with
Oand d. At this capacity superior Obfuscate is more important than superior Dominate. The ability to ensure that the action succeeds is more important than the 1 pool loss difference between inferior and superior Dominate. His ais unlikely to see much use, unless he blocks. Another Malk with roffers us some interesting possibilities. We don't really need Presence for combat ends, since he can play No Trace
- Jason "Son" Newberry
What more could you ask for in a 7-capacity Malkavian vampire? He has all
of the in-clan disciplines at superior, +1 bleed, inferior Presence, and a
corner-case special. This guy is going to be a terror going forward. Like
roffering some interesting possiblities, but combat ends isn't one of them.