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Vampire: The Eternal Struggle» Forums » General

Subject: Basic deckbuilding guidelines and parameters? rss

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Nate Merchant
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As I'm sure all fans of this game do, I have a mess of cards that I'd love to turn into decks and distribute among my friends in an evangelical frenzy. But unlike other CCG's, there don't seem to be any strict deckbuilding rules. Or maybe there are and I've missed them. Thanks for any advice!
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Dan Keller
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The only real restrictions are on the deck size: minimum of 12 for your crypt, and most people use tournament rules for library construction, minimum 60 cards max 90.

As for deck composition, that will vary widely, depending on what type of strategy you're going with for the deck. Since you can only play one Master card per turn (barring Trifles, Parthenons, etc), you generally don't want to fill a deck up on these. Somewhere around 15-20 cards at the most.

If you're building decks for your friends to play against, I would probably stick with basic strategies: Sneak & Bleed, Politics, Bleed or Fight. Stick with most of the common cards, such as Lost in Crowds, Undead Strength, Kine Resources Contested. Stuff that will directly support your goal for the deck.

I would stick with mostly low to mid-capacity vampires (3-6 capacity), and maybe stick in 2-3 larger capacity vampires. I wouldn't build around a large vampire with beginning decks as those can take a while to build up for a novice player.

White Wolf had released some demo decks a few years back which are smaller versions of normal decks and easier to teach basics of gameplay and to get a feel for how the game runs. The deck lists can be found at http://www.thelasombra.com/decks/WWdemodecks.htm

My advice may be a little rusty as I haven't played regularly in quite a few years but hopefully this helps out some.

Edit: And just so we're clear, there is no per card limit. Put in as many copies of a card into a deck as you feel you need to accomplish the deck's goal.
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salem .
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There's also a grouping rule for the crypt. It's in the recent rulebooks.
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Neil Muller
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There are no deck building restrictions other than the minimum sizes (12 card crypt, 40+(10 for every player) library size, although almost everyone just uses the VEKN tournament limits of 60-90 cards), the grouping rule and, for tournament play, the small list banned cards, which most groups also ban for casual play.

This lack of restriction is one of the strong points of the game, as it allows for a great deal of deck variety, from various decks focussed on only 1 facet of the game (votes, bleed, combat, etc.), to toolbox decks that aim for flexibility, but aren't as efficient at any one thing.

There is lots of good deck-building advice available:

The Lasombra's site has a page of deck building advice that's well worth looking at. "Head First Design Patterns" and "Legbiter's Happy Families analysis" were both of considerable help to me when I started building decks.

The clan newsletters are worth a look if you want ideas for a specific clan. It's also educational looking through the various decks available - both the lasombra's deck page and the tournament winning deck archive can be mined for ideas, although they can also be very frustrating to look at when you only have a limited selection of cards to work from.
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Teeka
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Natus wrote:
distribute among my friends in an evangelical frenzy.


Kudos/+1 rep/etc for this!

It's how I got most people into the game. One or two easy/fun to play (not necessarily super good of course) decks to start people off.

As for your question:
It's OOP now, but if you can find it somewhere (maybe as a download?), an official player's guide was released some years ago. It contains lots of info on basic deckbuilding and archetypes*, amongst other things.

*as already stated, there's so much room for variety in this game. Before you can say how many cards of a type would be a good idea etc, you first need to know what type of deck you want it to be (including clans, disciplines, etc).

Speaking as someone who's brought many a newbie into this game, let me know if you need any pointers, ok? You can PM me if you want.

Good luck!
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Neil Muller
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Teeka wrote:

As for your question:
It's OOP now, but if you can find it somewhere (maybe as a download?), an official player's guide was released some years ago.


The players guide, and the Kindred Most Wanted update to it, are both available as pdfs from DriveThruRPG.
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