Black Hand Pre-Release VTES Tournament
Washington DC, 16 November 2003

by Josh Duffin,
ultra-viole[n]t V:EKN Prince of DC
with pitty comments by Dan Coleman,
V:EKN Prince of Baltimore and battered foe

Fourteen people showed up for Blooding: Washington DC this past Sunday to get a look at all the exciting new cards. I had been a little worried that we might be over-subscribed like Baltimore was on Saturday, but I guess more people were free on Saturday or something. :-)

It was still a good time (and more low-key than Baltimore), though I was hoping that two more people would show up so we could have the perfect "four tables of four" seating. heh.

Here are the rankings after two rounds and the final, mostly adjusted from the Archon-calculated values due to the fact that the finals got the top player from each of the four clans rather than the top players disregarding clan:

1--Joshua Duffin !malkavian 2 7 4 120
2--Matt Morgan !nosferatu 1 6 0 102
[3] Kevin Karpinski !tremere 0 1.5 0 72
[4] Trey Morita !toreador 0 1 0 64
[5] Pete Oh !nosferatu 0 2 84
[5] Martin Henley !malkavian 0 2 84
[7] Heather Fogg !nosferatu 0 1.5 82
[8] Dan Keller !nosferatu 0 1.5 72
[8] Jason Babbitt !nosferatu 0 1.5 72
[10] Colin Riggs !tremere 0 1 70
11--Shawn Stutzel !toreador 0 0.5 54
12--Chris Cavett !toreador 0 0 48
12--Sarah Anthony !tremere 0 0 48
14--Dan Coleman !malkavian 0 0 36

For the statistically interested, this works out to:

!malkavian: 3 players, 9 prelim vps (avg 3.0) !nosferatu: 5 players, 14.5 prelim vps (avg 2.9) !tremere: 3 players, 2.5 prelim vps (avg 0.83) !toreador: 3 players, 1.5 prelim vps (avg 0.5)

This may have been something of a self-fulfilling prophecy in this case, as many of the participants had played at the Baltimore prerelease the day before and the !Nosferatu starter was therefore very popular (since it had done so well in Baltimore - though apparently not especially well worldwide). The !Toreador appeared weak again in DC, but it may not be as bad as it looked... hard to say.

In this tournament, after having played the !Malkavian the day before in Baltimore and gotten one game win in three rounds (sucked *horribly* the first two games, slightly redeemed myself the last one but not enough to make the finals), I decided to strip *all* the intercept out of it (leaving in just the Forced Awakenings and Telepathic Misdirections, and a couple Random Patterns (think that's what it's called, the Dem+Aus intercept/-intercept card)) and play it as straight stealth bleed (and of course vote). (I actually kind of wanted to play a different clan for variety's sake, but the !Malks were unpopular so I took it to round out the numbers to be at least approximately even.) It worked really well that way - instead of jamming on intercept, I almost always had enough stealth to get by people when I needed to, and the +bleed and Kine Resources Contesteds came up pretty regularly too (I played it at about 65 cards, if I remember right, adding a Gemini's Mirror (Obf dodge+maneuver) and a couple other things from my boosters). I was worried about the possibility of getting pounded mercilessly into torpor by the !Nos and others, but as seating and luck worked out, that didn't really happen much (before it was too late, heh heh).

Powerbase: Madrid rocks in this deck, by the way.

Thanks to everyone for coming to make this such a fun event! And thanks to White Wolf for their very generous prize support! And those great purple wrappers!

I have to agree with Josh about the play of the !Malks. I got "stuck" with them because (1) I was too slow in grabbing the first of the !Nos available; (2) I was not about to be the fifth player to choose !Nos; and (3) I played !Trem the day before in Baltimore and felt it "inappropriate" to play the same deck again, unlike some !Nosy and !Trem players. As luck would have it (HA!), in both games I had !Nos to the left of me; !Nos to the right of me; and !Nos in my face. How nosy-ating. {DJC]

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