Official VEKN Nosferatu Newsletter
April, 2002

Official VEKN Nosferatu Newsletter for April, 2002

This month, I have put together what is probably a pretty effective Nosferatu
deck. Ok, sure, it is only a Nosferatu deck by virtue of having 4 total
Nosferatu in the crypt, but they are the key to the deck, and without them, the
deck doesn't really do anything good.

"Prom Queen"

2x Grendel the Worm-Eaten (5) OBF
2x Agrippina (4) OBF
1x Lena Rowe (3) obf, pre
1x Celeste, the Voice of a Secret (3) pre
1x Delilah Easton (2) pre
1x Fredrick, the Weak (2) pre
1x Vasilis, the Traitor of Tom Cruise (2) pre
1z Angela Decker (1) pre
1x Igo, the Hungry (1) pre
1x Antoinette DuChamp (1) pre

Avg. of 2.75

8x Presence
4x Effective Management
4x Blood Doll
2x Secure Haven
1x Fragment of the Book of Nod
1x Powerbase: Montreal

18x Cloak the Gathering
4x Disguised Weapon
12x Enchant Kindred
10x Social Charm
6x Kindred Intelligence
2x Patagia-Flaps Allowing Limited Flight!
2x Nosferatu Justicar
2x Rumors of Gehenna
6x Fake Out
4x Arson
2x Flame Thrower
2x Assault Rifle

Prom Queen (clearly referring to Agrippina, the belle of the ball) is
essentially a Presence weenie bleed deck with stealth back up. It gets all the
benefits of speed and relentlessness that come from a little vampire bleed
deck, but backs it up with the incredibly flexible stealth provided by Cloak
the Gathering. Agrippina or Grendel can hand out +1 stealth on every action
taken by another vampire, tapped or no. If you have out Agrippina and Grendel,
they can combine Cloaks (effectively circumventing the "only one of each type
of action modifier per action per minion" rule) for +2 stealth if necessary.
Heck, if it is Lena Rowe acting and someone tries to block in earnest, you can
play up to three Cloaks on a single action! Sure, if no one ever tries to
block, you are stuck with a whole lot of unusable stealth, but if no one is
trying to block, you are probably ousting your prey anyway (well, that or
dead...)

The crypt is very straight forward--2 each of the two most important vampires,
and then one each of all the smallest vampires with Presence. As there are only
six different vampires of capacity 2 or less with Presence, I have to either
double up or include 3 pointers (of which there are countless possibilities),
so I chose to include the two 3 point vampires that are the best possible for
the deck--Lena Rowe is a no brainer, being the smallest vampire in the game
with both pre and obf; Celeste is less of a no brainer, but clearly the best 3
point vampire with only pre for the deck. Sure, she has a disadvantage, but as
this is a relentless forward action deck, she will in all likelihood never be
required to block, and occasionally she will get +1 bleed (and against the
Toreador, appropriately enough). Many of the vampires in the crypt have
disadvantages, but none of them directly affect the deck's main goal--speed
bleeding. Sure, Vasilis might give someone free +1 bleed, Igo hunts at a
default 0 stealth, and Angela can cost you pool if she gets burned, but none of
these slow down the ability to bleed, which is really all that is important.

At this point, one might think "Why not use weenie Dominate vampires, as they
can bleed better *and* have access to Deflection?", which is a good question.
The answer comes in efficiency and utility. The weenie Dominate vampires (of
which there are five 2 point vampires and only one 1 point vampire) are
slightly costlier on average, but more significantly, come with more
debilitating disadvantages--Royce gets -1 stealth while bleeding (counteracting
most of the advantage provided by Cloak) and Marciana has to pay an extra blood
to bleed. As the Presence vampires don't have any significant disadvantages, in
terms of bleeding, that is a definite point in their favor. Dominate and
Presence both have identical abilities in their free influence cards--Enchant
and Govern/Scouting, so that is a wash. Dominate, significantly, has access to
bleed bounce, which is a powerful effect, but requires leaving vampires
untapped (or packing Wakes) to make it work. On the side of Presence, you have
access to Social Charm and Legal Manipulation which can gain you pool at
Superior. Given that this deck wants to bleed as quickly as possible and never
have any untapped vampires if it can avoid it, I figure that Presence wins out
here--using Social Charm to gain pool as you bleed effectively counteracts
bleeds, just like bleed bounce (although admitedly not as well), but doesn't
slow you down like relying on bleed bounce tends to do.

In the Master card selection, there are plenty of Presence skill cards--getting
superior Presence is important as it allows you to Enchant at superior (getting
you more vampires cheaply and quickly), allows you to gain pool from the Social
Charms, and in a pinch, you can give Agrippina or Grendel Presence for extra
bleeding ability. The Effective Managements are a total no brainer, but you
don't actually need that many, as the Nosferatu have access to Kindred
Intelligence, speeding things up. Blood Dolls are always good, just as much for
their ability to give blood back to vampires as take it in this sort of deck.
Secure Havens are a must to keep your Nosferatu from getting killed, the
Fragment allows you to cycle out Stealth if it starts clogging your hand, and
Powerbase Montreal is a very powerful card that has a minimal disadvantage in
this deck--if it gets stolen, you always will have the extra actions to waste
to get it back. Heck, you can even *let* people borrow it as a deal maker, and
then just get it back on your turn.

The Minion cards have both obvious choices, and choices bordering on sheer
idiocy. The Cloaks are the key to the deck, and so 18 seems like a reasonable
number. As opposed to most other action modifier stealth cards, Cloak can be
played multiple times per action (given multiple vampires with OBF), so the
super redundancy isn't that much of an issue. The Enchants and Socials have
already been discussed, but again, Enchant at superior effectively reads "gain
2 pool", which is always going to be a good deal (although it is often tricky
to get to use the superior in this deck, due to the small vampire sizes) and
Social at superior gains you pool which again, is always good. The Socials
could have been Legal Manipulations, but given the small vampire capacities,
the one blood cost is significant, and using only +1 bleed cards lessens the
possibility of irresponsible bleeding--getting bounced and ousting your grand
prey. In the goofy support cards, you have Kindred Intelligence, a card often
laughed at as pointless, but in this deck, is quite handy--the Nosferatu in the
deck don't need to take offensive actions, so they are always available to take
support actions, just like KI. Between the Effectives and Kindred
Intelligneces, you can get out an awful lot of vampires right quick. The
Disguised Weapons, Patagia, Fake Outs, and guns exist to keep the Nosferatu
alive, although the Fake Outs can be used by an accidentally blocked Presence
weenie in a pinch. If someone does rush Agrippina, she has a lot of maneuvering
available, and might very well pull an Assault Rifle out of her watch, even
after her opponent has picked a strike. Sure, the Assault Rifles are mad
expensive, but you'll probably only ever need to buy one, the deck can afford
it, and 4R with an optional maneuver is *really* scary. The Flame Throwers
should probably be Ivory Bows, but I don't have any extras for the deck :-) The
minor vote angle is useful for support--the Nosferatu Justicars are very easy
to pass, barring heavy vote opposition, and the Rumors are very useful
considering the 20 Master cards and also easy to pass--just make friends with
everyone and give away extra MPAs all around. The Arsons are always useful in a
deck with space for them and actions to spend, and this deck has both.

The strengths of this deck, clearly, are speed, reliable stealth, moderate pool
gain, and sheer numbers. It will run into trouble in the face of heavy
intercept (although the sheer number of actions probably will overcome most
serious blocking decks); heavy bleed nullification (like the deck with 20
Telepathic Counters...) or bounce (although as each minion only bleeds for 2,
getting bounced isn't that big of a deal, and often an opponent will suck up
the bleed of 2, hoping to bounce a bigger, juicier bleed); an even faster bleed
predator; and Rush combat, although the "whack-a-mole" defense certainly helps
out here--whenever a minion gets torporized, pull them out as quickly as
possible, and leave them around to block. That, and Agrippina with Patagia and
an Assault Rifle will probably scare off most close range Rush decks, and do a
good job of slowing down a long range Rush strategy, like an Assamite deck.


Peter D Bakija
PDB6@aol.com
http://www.geocities.com/bakija6

"We have no pages lefted.
It is too deep."
-The deeply bizzare and inexplicable error message my junky windows
machine at work gave me one day.