Friday, August 24, 2012

Deck Construction: Module Building

Modular Building of decks is probably a fairly long-standing idea in VTES.  The core of it is that you create a trusted mix of cards which will work for a given discipline/'trick'.

Example Module:

Dominate Powerbleed (24 cards)
6x Govern the Unaligned
4x Foreshadowing Destruction
4x Command the Beast
6x Conditioning
4x Seduction

Dominate Flick/Defence (12 cards)
4x Wake (of whatever sort)
8x Deflection

Presence Vote-Push
4x Bewitching Oration
4x Awe
6x Voter Captivation
4x Optional Versatile Vote-push  (e.g. Iron Glare, Scalpel Tongue)

Pot Grapple Combat
6x Slam
6x Immortal Grapple
6x Torn Signpost

Ani Air Strike Combat
8x Carrion Crows
8x Aid from Bats

Aus Bleed Defence
4x Eyes of Argus
4x Telepathic Misdirection
2x Telepathic Counter
2x My Enemy's Enemy

Now the reason for multiples of 6 would mean that choosing the right combination of 6-card-multiples would then be easy to build decks of 60, 72 and 90 card decks.

I might put up some more of the Deck Modules I can think of, or if there are Deck Modules you use.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

How would you change VTES? Addition Rulebook 1.6.1

 Rulebook 1.6.1

7. Cancelling cards and effects.
There are two major types of Cancel: "Cancel a card" and "Cancel an effect".  When a card is played, other players may play cards which cancel that card. (As indicated in  When effects are declared, they may also be cancelled by other cards. 
When a card or effect would cancel a card, the cancelled card is considered to have no card text but was still played and still retains its name, type and cost.  The cost is paid for a cancelled card unless there is explicit text which contradicts this rule.
When a card or effect would cancel another effect, the cancelled effect is considered to not resolve; it has no effect.  This means that the card or effect was played successfully.  If a bleed action has its effects cancelled, then it is not a successful bleed action but since it was played successfully it will be successful action if the action is not blocked.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

How would you change VTES? 4E: Contesting

4. Untap Phase and Contesting

You start your turn with your untap phase. At the beginning of your untap phase, you must untap all of your cards (except your infernal cards, see section 11). Any cards or effects that require or allow you to do something during your untap phase take effect after you have untapped your cards. You may choose the order in which these effects take place. Any effect which must happen at the beginning of the Untap phase must be resolved before you resolve any voluntary Untap phase effect.  Of course, the rest of your Untap phase effects must also be resolved before any effects which must occur at the end of your Untap phase.  If there are multiple effects that must occur either at the beginning or the end of your Untap phase, you may choose the order in which you resolve the effects. Along with effects generated by cards, there are other effects that are resolved during the untap phase:
  • If you have the Edge, you may take one blood counter from the blood bank and add it to your pool.
  • For each card and title you are contesting, you must choose to yield or to pay to contest it (see below).

4.1 Contested Cards

Some of the cards in the game represent unique resources, such as specific locations, equipment or people. These cards will be identified as "unique" in their card text. In addition, all crypt cards represent unique minions. If more than one unique card with the same name is brought into play, that means control of the card is being contested.  Any Unique card can be Contested and will be Contested if another copy of that card enters play.  For the duration of the each contest, all copies of the contested cards are turned face down and are out of play Out of Play. If another uUnique card with the same name is brought into play, it is immediately contested and turned face down as well.
If additional copies of a Contested card would enter play, they are instead placed Out of Play after paying for their cost and also become Contested.  The cost to contest a card is one 1 pool, which you pay during each at the beginning of your untap phases. Instead of paying the cost to contest the card, you may choose to yield the card. You may choose to yield a Contested card by not paying the 1 pool cost; A yielded your copy of the Contested card is burned. Any cards or counters stacked on the yielded card are also burned.
If all other copies of a contested cards contesting your unique card are yielded, then the your copy of the card is untapped and turned face up during your next untap phase, ending the contest.

4.1.1 Contesting Cards with Yourself

If at any time you would Contest a card with yourself, then that play would be illegal; you cannot choose to Contest a card with yourself. If, for some reason, you must contest a card you already control the 'new' copy of the card is burned after any cost is paid. Be careful about putting duplicates of the same unique cards in your deck. You can't control more than one of the same unique card at a time, and you cannot contest cards with yourself (if some effect would force you to contest a card with yourself, then you simply burn the incoming copy of the unique card). On the other hand, you may wish to have a second copy handy in case the first is burned.

4.2 Contested Titles

Some titles are unique. For example, there can be only one Prince or Archbishop of a particular city (see Vampiric Sects, sec. 10 Appendix 1 Keywords). If more than one vampire in play claims the same title, then the title is contested. While the title is being contested the vampires involved in the contest are treated as if they have no title, the title is Out of Play but they remain the vampire is still controlled and may act and block as normal.
Any vampire may continue to contest a Title by burning 1 blood at the beginning of each Untap phase. They may also choose to yield the title by not burning 1 blood.  
The cost to contest a title is one blood, which is paid by the vampire during each of his untap phases. Instead of paying the cost to contest the title, the vampire may choose to yield the title (or may be forced to yield, if he has no blood to pay). Only ready vampires can contest titles -- vampires in torpor must yield during the untap phase. Yielding the title has no other effect on the vampire.
If all other vampires contesting a title with your vampire have yielded the contest, then your vampire acquires the title during your next untap phase, ending the contest.

How would you change VTES? 4F: Rules 2.2

2.2. Blood Bank and the Edge

Each player takes 30 blood counters to form her starting pool. The remaining blood counters are placed in the blood bank -- a common reserve of counters placed so that all players can reach it. Remember that the number of blood counters in the blood bank is limitless -- the bank never runs out.
The Edge (see section 1.2) begins the game uncontrolled and so is placed in the central area as well.

2.2.1 Blood, Pool, Life and Blood Bank

Players should have a large number of small counters to use for Pool, Life and Blood.  At the beginning of the game each player takes 30 counters as their starting Pool.  
When an ally is put into play, it gains counters from the Blood Bank equal to its Life.  
The Blood Bank is theoretically limitless and cannot run out.

2.2.2 The Edge

The Edge represents an advantage you have gained over the other Methuselahs.  It begins the game uncontrolled and is often placed in the center of the table to represent this.  The Edge should be some distinctive object which cannot be mistaken for any other game component; many players use figurines to represent the Edge.

2.2.2a Gaining the Edge

When a minion you control successfully bleeds (i.e. a bleed action taken by a minion you control resolves in dealing damage to another Methuselah's pool) you gain the Edge even if it is controlled by another Methuselah.

2.2.2b Bonus Pool from the Edge

During your Untap phase, if you control the Edge you may gain 1 pool from the Blood Bank.

2.2.2c Burning the Edge

There are times during the game where you may burn the Edge. When the Edge is burned, it is moved to a neutral location where it is clearly not controlled by any one of the Methuselahs.
During a referendum, including the Bloodhunt referendum, you may burn the edge to gain 1 vote.  
Actions may require you to burn the Edge as part of their cost (such as Enticement); you only burn the Edge when the action is not blocked and would be successful.

How would you change VTES? 4X: Appendix 1 - Keyword Glossary

(AFAIK none of this is explicitly structured as a common glossary of keywords in one location. It may be spread through the rules in a variety of places, but it is not a common collection of keywords.  Also, I would like to clearly define some keywords and wish I could go back and edit the text of cards to make these keywords be used.)  This is currently a work in progress, so I will come back to add and edit these.  But for now...

Bound: Keywords can be bound to clans or sects. If the minion changes their properties, then they may no longer be eligible to use the keyword. Examples of bound keywords are Prince, Scarce, Slave and Justicar.

General Keywords

  • Burn: Any effect which burns something either moves counters back to the Blood Bank or moves cards to the Ash Heap.
  • Contest/Contesting: Contesting cards and titles occurs at the beginning of the Untap phase. This makes the cards and/or titles Out of Play. The cost for contesting a card is 1 pool paid by the card's controller.  The cost for contesting a Title is 1 blood paid by the minion with the title.  For more detail regarding the rules on Contesting see the section earlier in the rules.
  • Controlled: A card which is not Out of Play or in the Uncontrolled region.
  • Move: Any effect which will Move a target must have a valid target to choose. That is, you cannot move more counters than currently exist and you cannot move a card from a minion which is not there (e.g. cannot move equipment if there is no equipment). Any effect which would attempt to Move things from a target which do not exist would be an illegal play.
  • Out of Play: Cards which have been removed from the game are Out of Play. This is also the state for Contested Cards (see rules for Contesting Unique Cards or Titles).
  • Ready: A card in the ready region is Ready.
  • Steal: Steal moves the target card or counters from another minion to the minion playing this effect (in general). Steal effects may be used when there is not necessarily a valid target. That is, I can try to Steal 3 blood from a vampire with 1 blood. The Steal effect will take any eligible targets available and any excess effects of the Steal effect will fail (i.e. Stealing 3 blood from a vampire with 1 blood will result in moving 1 blood and the remaining 'steal 2 blood' will fail). This means that Steal Equipment can be played on a minion which has no equipment. 
  • Unique: Any card or title which is Unique can be contested. By default, crypt cards are Unique. By default, allies are non-Unique.
  • Non-Unique: Minions or cards with this keyword cannot be contested; they are not Unique.

Vampire Keywords

Vampire Properties

  • Blood Cursed: Blood Cursed vampires may not diablerise another vampire.
  • Bleed: All vampires have 1 bleed. Vampires with +x bleed have that in addition to their normal 1 bleed. Vampires with -x bleed have the reverse. Allies have their bleed listed at the top of their text; they may have +x bleed listed on their superior text and if so they function the same way. Any minion which successfully completes a bleed action which would resolve for less than 0, instead has that action resolve for 0. This action is successful (it was not blocked) but is not a successful bleed (the target of the action did not burn pool during the action's resolution) and the Edge does not move.
  • Capacity: This is shown on a crypt card in the bottom right inside a red circle. 
  • Clan: This is shown via the clan logo (and also card background) on the crypt card. Caitiff cannot be chosen as a Clan by cards, however if a Caitiff creates another vampire the new vampire will also be a Clan-less Caitiff. Caitiff is not a clan, but a collective name for vampires without a known Clan heritage.
  • Generation: This is a synonym of Capacity. Larger capacity vampires are "older generation" vampires.
  • Infernal: Infernal vampires do not Untap as normal. To untap an Infernal vampire, you must burn 1 pool during your Untap phase.
  • Intercept: All vampires have 0 intercept. Vampires with +x intercept have that in addition to their normal 0 intercept. Vampires with -x intercept have the reverse. Any minion with stealth greater than the blocking minion's intercept will not be blocked, even when the intercept is less than zero.
  • Older: A vampire with a larger capacity.
  • Red List: Red List minions have additional special rules attached to them. See the section "Red List Minions" for additional rules. Traditionally these minions have made themselves enemies of vampire society and typically valuable rewards have been offered for their destruction.
  • Scarce: When a Methuselah would control more than one Scarce minion of the same clan, they must burn 3 pool for each Scarce minion beyond the first. That is, if a Methuselah would control three Scarce minions of the same clan then they would burn 6 pool (3 pool x 2 minions beyond the first).
  • Slave: A Slave vampire is bound to a Clan/s. The Slave cannot take directed actions unless you also control a member of the Clan to which the Slave is bound. 
    When a member of the Clan to which a Slave is bound would enter combat after being blocked, the Slave may take the place of the acting vampire; the Slave enters combat with the blocking minion. The Slave vampire taps before the combat begins and the acting vampire untaps; it does not matter if the Slave could have taken the action on their own.
  • Stealth: All vampires have 0 stealth but some of the Default Actions (see the section on Default Actions) have additional stealth.  Minions with +x stealth have that in addition to their normal 0 stealth.  Minions with -x stealth have the reverse.  Any minion attempting to block with intercept equal to or greater than the acting minion will block the acting minion, even if both the intercept amount and the stealth amount are less than zero.
  • Sterile: Sterile vampires cannot take actions or use effects that would put vampires directly into play; that is they cannot take Breed Actions (see below for more details on Breed Actions).  They can take actions that may indirectly put vampires into play, such as adding counters to an uncontrolled minion.
  • Strength: All vampires have 1 strength.  Minions with "+x strength" have that in addition to their normal strength.  Minions with "-x strength" have the reverse.  Allies have their strength listed at the top of their text; they may have +x strength or -x strength listed on theirtext and if so it functions the same way.  Any strength-based strike which would be for a number less than 0, resolves as if the strike was for 0 damage.
  • Vulnerability: This is bound to a type (commonly Cold Iron).  Damage from the bound source is treated as aggravated damage for minions with this keyword.
  • Younger: A vampire with a smaller capacity.


All vampires belong to a Sect.  A vampire cannot belong to more than one sect.
  • Camarilla: Vampires with this keyword are Camarilla vampires.
  • Sabbat: Vampires with this keyword are Sabbat vampires.
  • Laibon: Vampires with this keyword are Laibon vampires.
  • Independent: Vampires with this keyword are Independent vampires.
  • Anarch: Anarch is a subtype of Independent vampires.  A vampire cannot be Anarch without also being Independent.  If a vampire which is Anarch changes sect to a sect other than Independent, then it also loses its Anarch keyword.
    Any minion may choose to become an Independent Anarch as a +1 stealth action which costs 2 blood if you do not already control an Anarch vampire.  If you do control an Anarch vampire, this action costs 1 blood.

Titles and Votes

  • Primogen: This is a non-Unique Camarilla title worth 1 vote.
  • Bishop: This is a non-Unique Sabbat title worth 1 vote.
  • Archbishop: This is a Unique Sabbat title worth 2 votes.  It is bound to a Domain (e.g. Archbishop of Mexico City) and any other title which is bound to this Domain will lead to contesting of the title.
  • Baron: This is a Unique Independent Anarch title worth 2 votes.  It is bound to a Domain (e.g. Baron of Los Angeles) and any other title which is bound to this Domain will lead to contesting of the title.  Baron's burn +1 blood when contesting their Domain with an Archbishop or Prince.
  • Prince: This is a Unique Camarilla title worth 2 votes. It is bound to a Domain (e.g. Prince of Paris) and any other title which is bound to this Domain will lead to contesting of the title. 
  • Magaji: This is a non-Unique Laibon title worth 2 votes.
  • Kholo: This is a Unique Laibon title worth 2 votes. It is bound to a Laibon Clan.  There can only be one member of a Laibon Clan with this title but this title does not contest between different clans. That is, an Ishtarri Kholo does not contest the title with a Guruhi Kholo but two Ishtarri may contest the Kholo title.
  • Justicar: This is a Unique Camarilla title worth 3 votes.  It is bound to a Clan (e.g. Ventrue Justicar) so it will contest any other vampire of the matching clan and title. The title also becomes inactive if the Justicar changes clan.  Inactive titles cannot be contested.
  • Priscus: This is a non-Unique Sabbat title worth 1 ballot.  All of the Priscii (pl. of Priscus) vote in their own referendum using their ballots.  As a group they cast 3 votes in referendums; even if there is 1 Priscus they are not considered to have voted for or against a referendum.  Priscus may use action modifiers which would give additional votes to gain additional ballots.  Ballots are worth 0 votes in the main referendum.
  • Cardinal: This is a non-Unique Sabbat title worth 3 votes.
  • Imperator: This is a Unique Camarilla title worth 3 votes; only one controlled vampire in the game may be the Imperator.  Imperators may play the card Bloodhunt from their controller's Ashheap as if it was in their hand, as if using the title of Prince.
  • Inner Circle: This is a Unique Camarilla title worth 4 votes.  It is bound to a Clan (e.g. Toreador Inner Circle) so it will contest any other vampire of the matching clan and title.  The title becomes inactive if the Inner Circle changes clan.  Inactive titles cannot be contested.
  • Regent: Regent is a Unique Sabbat title worth 4 votes.  A vampire with the Regent title may play cards as if they were also a Cardinal.
  • x votes: This is a non-Unique title worth x votes. (e.g. "2 votes" is a title).
  • Additional votes: Additional votes do not make a vampire titled.  Any card which gives "+x votes" also does not give a vampire a title.  (e.g. Legendary Vampire does not make the vampire with that card titled)

Action Keywords

  • Bleed Action: Bleed actions are a directed action directed at your prey, by default.  Any minion with a bleed amount may declare a bleed action.
  • Breed: Breed actions put vampires directly into play; moving a crypt card into the ready region is not a Breed action.  Examples of Breed actions are: Third Tradition: Progeny, The Embrace, Tumnimos and Shock Troops.  Command the Legions is not a Breed Action.  Sterile vampires cannot take Breed Actions.
  • Employ: Employ actions put retainers onto a ready minion; the retainer does not need to be placed on the acting minion for the action to be an Employ action.
  • Equip: Equip actions are any action which will put an Equipment Card on the acting minion.  These may be equipment cards from the hand or from another minion in play.  A minion may only gain 1 Equipment Card on a standard Equip action.
  • Hunt: These actions can be taken by a vampire who has no blood.  It can be used in place the the Default Hunt.
  • Mandatory: Mandatory actions must be performed before any voluntary actions.  Some cards may force Mandatory actions on a minion; these Mandatory actions can be performed in any order but all Mandatory actions must be completed before any voluntary actions are declared.  Declaring a voluntary action before all Mandatory actions have been taken is an illegal play.
    Vampires who have 0 blood always have a Mandatory action to hunt; this can occur at any time in a turn and does not make previous voluntary actions illegal.
    If a minion has two Mandatory actions then it does not perform any actions.  If a minion has a Mandatory action that it cannot complete (e.g. a vampire must hunt but is prohibited from hunting) then it does not perform any actions.
  • Political Action: Political actions, if not blocked, resolve in a referendum.  During a political action, action modifiers can be used and reactions may be used by the non-acting minion.
  • Recruit: Recruit actions put Allies into play.  Any card which would put an ally (i.e. not a crypt card or a vampire) into play is a recruit action.  The Summoning at superior Presence [PRE] is a recruit action.
  • Repeatable: A Repeatable action may be performed more than once by a given minion during a minion phase.  Most actions can only be performed once during a minion phase by a given minion.
  • Voluntary: Any action which is chosen by the player, instead of a Mandatory action forced upon a minion, is a Voluntary action.  Cards may check to see if Voluntary actions have been taken or if only Mandatory actions have been taken. Uncontrolled Impulse is an example of such a card.

How would you change VTES? Part 4D

1.6.3. Minion Cards

Minion cards are cards that your vampires and allies (collectively referred to as "minions") play. Unless the card states otherwise, a minion card is burned after a minion plays it.
By default, a minion card in play is controlled by the controller of the minion it is on. If a minion card is just in play and not on another controlled card, then it is, by default, controlled by the Methuselah who played it.
If a Minion Card is played on a minion or another controlled card (e.g. a Master card), then the player who controls the minion or controlled card will control the Minion Card in play.  If a Minion Card is put into play, then it is controlled by the Methuselah who played it.
In many cases, a minion card will have a Discipline symbol, a clan symbol and/or a blood cost; in these cases, the card can only be played by a vampire who meets the requirements.

Some allies have the ability to play certain cards "as a vampire." In these cases, the ally is treated as a vampire for all effects generated by the play of the card, including duration effects (like "for the remainder of combat"). The ally's life represents his blood (to pay costs, for example). Any blood he gains or loses as a vampire equates to a gain or loss of life for the ally. For purposes of that card, the ally has a capacity of 1 by default (for use if the card requires an older vampire or a vampire of a given capacity). If the ally gains life in excess of his capacity, it doesn't drain off since the ally does not technically have a capacity. and if the effect inflicts aggravated damage on the ally, he burns life as normal. Allies are not affected by phenomena such as sunlight and fire in the same way as vampires, so aggravated damage and normal damage burns life without any special consideration for the type of damage.  However, if the effect would send the ally to torpor, then he is burned instead. The ally is treated as a vampire only for the effect generated from playing the card. In particular, the ally is not treated as a vampire for effects the card has from being in play (like "the vampire with this card" effects).
The general types of minion cards are as follows:
Action cards: A minion can play an action card to take an action other than the default actions like "hunt". Only one action card can be played for the action; action cards cannot be used to modify other actions.
Action modifier cards: The acting minion can play these cards to modify his action. They can only be played once a minion has declared an action.  Usually only the acting minion can play Action Modifier cards but there are commonly used exceptions.  For example, some action modifiers increase the acting minion's stealth or bleed amount or give him more votes. A minion cannot play the same action modifier more than once during a single action. Each minion can only play an action modifier with a given name once during an action.

Ally, equipment and retainer cards: These action cards represent things that a minion can bring into play by taking an action. It takes one action for each card. A minion cannot bring two equipment cards into play in a single action, for example. Equipment and retainer cards are played on the minion playing them (the acting minion), while allies are put into play and remain independent from the acting minion become new minions. Equipment and retainers are burned when the minion they are played on is burned.
Political cards: A political action card can be played to call a referendum as an action, or it can be burned from your hand during a referendum to gain a 1 vote. You may only burn 1 political action from your hand in a referendum.
Combat cards: These are played by minions when in combat (see Combat, sec. 6.4).
Reaction cards: A ready untapped minion can play a reaction card in response to an action taken by another Methuselah's minion (an action taken by one of a Methuselah's minions cannot be reacted to by any of her own minions). A minion cannot play the same reaction card more than once during a single action. Minions may play 1 copy of a reaction card during each action. Using a A reaction card does not tap the minion using it.
Reflex cards: A minion can play a reflex card to cancel a specified kind of card played against him as it is played.
8. Powers: These action cards are only playable by Imbueds minions (see the Appendix 2 - Imbued Rules appendix).

Thursday, August 9, 2012

How would you change VTES? Part 4C

1.6.2. Master Cards

Master cards are cards you play in your role as a Methuselah. There are two three types of master cards: out-of-turn, trifles and the regular master cards. Some types of regular master cards are: locations and Disciplines (and there are other regular master cards that don't have a specific type). Master cards can have additional categories listed on the card such as Location and Discipline.  Regular master cards are played during your master phase. You can normally play only one regular master card during your master phase. Out-of-turn master cards can only be played during other players' turns. By playing an out-of-turn master card, you are effectively "borrowing" from your next master phase -- that is, playing the card now instead of waiting until your next master phase.
A master card in play is, by default, controlled by the Methuselah who played it, even if it is played on a card controlled by another Methuselah.
The general types of master cards are as follows:
Some specific Keywords found on Master Cards are as follows:
  1. Location: A location card represents a place (a building, a city or a designated gathering place, for example) that a Methuselah or her minions control. A location card stays in play and may be used repeatedly, even on the turn it is played. Some library cards (such as Arson) can burn them. Cards which target locations, such as Arson and Disputed Territory, can target these cards.
  2. Discipline: A Discipline card is played on a controlled vampire (even one controlled by another Methuselah) to give him them an additional a level of a Displine., either giving a vampire the basic level of a new Discipline or adding a level to one he already has (increasing the level of a Discipline from basic to superior). The Commonly the vampire also gains an additional blood one capacity (the "+1" in the red circle in the bottom right corner of the card indicates this) along with the Discipline granted. but he does Vampires do not automatically gain an extra blood to fill the any new capacity they may gain.
  3. Trophy: A trophy may be put into play using a master phase action (or can be retrieved as listed under "Red List" in section 11). When you play a Trophy it is put into play in your ready region.  Trophies It has have no effect until it is they are moved to a vampire and once they are moved to a vampire (and controlled by the owner of that vampire) a Trophy cannot be given to another vampire using the rules for Trophies. When any vampire burns a Red List minion in combat or as a (D) action (including diablerie), the controller of the a Trophy may choose to move the that Trophy to that the vampire which burned the Red List minion. Any number of trophies in play may be moved to the vampire in this way (in addition to the single trophy that the vampire's controller may retrieve from her library, ash heap or hand). Once placed on a vampire, a trophy is controlled by the controller of the vampire it is on, and it cannot be awarded again. See "Red List" in Section 11 for more details regarding the Red List keyword and Trophies.
  4. Out-of-turn: You may play an out-of-turn master card whenever appropriate during another player's turn. Doing so counts against your next master phase, even if the Out-of-turn master card is cancelled (see Master Phase, sec. 5). You cannot play a second out-of-turn master card before your next master phase. You cannot play an out-of-turn master card on your own turn.
  5. Trifle: Some master cards are identified as trifles. When a Methuselah successfully plays a Trifle (and it isn't canceled), she they gain an additional Master Phase action. For an out-of-turn trifle, she they gain a master phase action in her next master phase. A Methuselah can gain only one master phase action from trifles in a given master phase. If you play others Trifles they act like regular master cards and do not provide additional Master Phase actions.
  6. Other master cards: Any master cards not explained here have their effects described on them. These master cards are discarded when they are played unless the card says to put it into play or to play it on some other card. Investment: Investments are put into play and often convert counters into pool for different players.
  7. Powerbase: Powerbases represent important geographic locations, often cities, which will give players important long-lasting benefits.  Many of them generate additional pool counters for their controller.

How would you change VTES? Part 4B: Rules Changes - Rulebook 1.6.1

1.6.1. General

All Library cards have an Attribute Bar on the left hand side (it has a marbled background).
  1. Playing Cards. There are four main types of library cards: convictions, master cards, minion cards and events cards. Convictions are put in play during the untap phase (see details in the Imbued Rules appendix); master cards are played by Methuselahs; minion cards are played by the minions (vampires and allies) the Methuselahs control; event cards are put into play during the discard phase to represent events that affects the World of Darkness as a whole (see section 8). Master cards have no icon at the top of the attribute bar while the other cards have an icon there that indicates what type of card it is. A card is played by placing it face up in the playing area or by showing it to the other players and placing it face up in the ash heap. The player completely declares the effect of the card when it is played. Most cards are played by revealing them from your hand, declaring any targets and effects of the card and then either placing it face up in the playing area or instead into the ash heap.
  2. a) Convictions are put into play during your untap phase and have special rules detailed in the Imbued Rules Appendix.  
    b) Master cards are played during the Master Phase by the Methuselah to try represent a direct action by the ancient hidden vampire you represent.  
    c) Minion cards are usually played during the Minion Phase by the minions you control.  They represent the actions, responses and physical combats between the minions in play.  Minion cards include Action Cards, Action Modifier Cards, Combat Cards and Reaction Cards.
    d) Event cards are played during the Discard Phase. They represent major events in the history of the world of the minions in play. They can only be played once in a game.
Some effects can cancel a card "as it is played." These effects (and effects that grant the ability to play them, like Forced Awakening) are the only effects allowed during the "as played" time period of another card. Even drawing to replace cards comes after this time period.
  1. Drawing Cards. Whenever you have successfully played a library card from your hand, you immediately draw another from your library to replace it (unless card text says otherwise, of course). You must wait to replace a card you have attempted to play until it is either successfully played or cancelled.  If your library is empty, then you do not draw to replenish your hand, but you continue to play. The number of cards in your hand should always match your hand size (cards that are replaced later reduce your hand size for the duration of the effect). Whenever they don't match (when an effect changes your hand size or adds or removes cards from your hand, for example), immediately discard down to or draw up to your hand size.
  2. Requirements for Playing Cards. Each library card has symbols on the Attribute Bar (the marble stripe on the left side) for the card type (except for master cards), the clan or Discipline (if any) required to play the card, or special abilities such as Flight and the cost (if any) of playing that card. Some cards will have other requirements (such as capacity or title) There may be additional requirements stated in the card text. Only a minion who meets all of the requirements given on a minion card can play it, while only a. A Methuselah who controls a ready minion who meets the requirements of a master card can plaiconmiscburnoptiony it that Master card.
a) Some cards that have a requirement also have a burn option icon. This icon means that  a Methuselah who doesn't control a minion that meets the requirements may discard the card during any Methuselah's untap phase. Each Methuselah is limited to one such discard each untap phase.

  1. Costs for playing cards
    A drop of blood with a number on the left side of a library card (in the middle of the side or in the bottom corner) indicates the amount of blood or pool that must be burned to play the card. A number in a red drop represents blood cost (the amount of blood the vampire must burn). A number in a white diamond with a skull represents pool cost (the amount of pool the Methuselah must burn).
    The cost of a card must be fully paid before the card begins to resolve.  If the cost of an action could not be paid before playing the card (and that cost was known before declaring the action), then it is an illegal play and cannot be taken. If for whatever reason the cost of a card cannot be paid before resolving an action which was a legal play, then any available blood or pool must be burned and the card to resolves as an unsuccessful action.  Once the cost of a card has been fully paid, then the card resolves normally (See Action Cards, Action Modifier Cards, Master Cards, Reaction Cards and Strike Cards for further details).

  2. Targets. If a card is played on another card, or selects or chooses or otherwise targets another card, the target card must be in play (i.e. controlled).
    Vampires in the torpor region are eligible targets by default, but vampires in the uncontrolled region and contested cards are not. Cards in the uncontrolled region cannot be targeted without specific text on the card.  Cards which are contested are not in play and cannot be targeted.
  3. Sequencing. If two or more players want to play a card or effect, the acting Methuselah plays first. At every stage, the acting player always has the opportunity to play the next card or effect. So after playing one effect, she may play another and another. Once she is finished, the opportunity passes to the defending Methuselah (in the cases of directed actions and combat), then to the rest of the Methuselahs in clockwise order from the acting Methuselah. Note that if any Methuselah uses a card or effect, the acting Methuselah again gets the opportunity to play the next effect.
  4. Draft Effects. Some cards have a special booster-pack version that also lists, in a gray box identified as "DRAFT:", an additional way to use the card. This effect can only be used in a draft or sealed deck tournament. Any bold text, like "+1 stealth action", in bold at the top of the regular text applies to the whole card, including the draft effect. Card cost applies as normal to the draft effect, as well. Clan and Discipline requirements are given in the draft effect section (and are independent of any Clan or Discipline requirement of the regular effects).

Thursday, August 2, 2012

How would I change VTES? Part 4A: Rulebook Changes #1

Rules changes have been marked with italics.

1.5. Overview of Crypt Cards

Each crypt card (the amber-backed cards) has a set of elements that describe the vampire: his name, blood capacity, clan, Disciplines (powers), group and any special abilities or political title he has. These elements are described below. Some advanced expansions include other types of crypt cards. Details for these types can be found on the web site. See More Information. There are Crypt Cards which are not vampires; additional information on these Crypt Cards can be found in the Complete Rules Reference on the VEKN Website.
  1. Name: The name of the vampire appears at the top of the card. Each crypt card is unique, so only one copy of each can be in play at a time. A second Methuselah could contest control of the vampire (see Contested Cards, sec. 4.1), which means that the Methuselahs are struggling for control of him. If another Methuselah attempts to control another copy of the same vampire it would become Contested (see Contested Cards, Section 4.1).
  2. Blood capacity: The number in the red circle in the lower right corner of the card is the vampire's capacity. This number reflects many things at once: the vampire's relative age (larger numbers represent older vampires), the amount of influence (in pool) a Methuselah must invest in him in order to bring him under her control and the maximum ability  resources he the vampire has to heal wounds or play cards (some cards cost blood to play).
A vampire with a larger capacity than another is said to be older, and one with a smaller capacity is younger. A vampire cannot have more blood than his capacity; if an effect puts more blood on him than his capacity allows, the excess is always moved to the blood bank immediately.
An uncontrolled vampire (see Play Area, sec. 2.3) will have blood counters stacked on it representing the amount of influence pool that has been invested in him. When that stack pool counters equals his blood capacity at the end of the influence phase, you reveal move the vampire and place him in the  to the ready region (see Play Area, sec. 2.3) with that pool on top of the vampire as blood. He retains the blood counters used to influence him on his card to serve as his blood (see Influence Phase, sec. 7).
  1. Clan: Each vampire belongs to a clan, identified by the symbol at the top of the attribute bar (the marble stripe on the left side of the card). See the reference pages in the center of the rules booklet for a list of the clan symbols. You can find a comprehensive list of these in the Glossary and also on the VEKN Website. Some library cards require a member of a particular vampire clan to play, while other library cards may affect only vampires of a particular clan. The clans are grouped into sects (see Vampire Sects, sec. 10).
  2. Sect: All vampires belong to a Sect. This is like an association or philosophy for vampires.  Each clan has a Sect to which most of its member belong; but there are vampires who belong to other Sects within a clan.
  3. Disciplines: These are supernatural powers that vampires and some mortals possess. The Disciplines possessed by the vampire are represented by the group of symbols at the bottom of the attribute bar on the left hand side of the crypt cardFor vampires, they may have inferior disciplines (shown by a square) or superior disciplines (shown by a diamond). Other crypt cards may have non-vampiric disciplines which have their own symbols; these tend to not have inferior or superior levels.
    The vampire's Disciplines determine which library cards he the minion can play. If a library card requires a Discipline (noted by a Discipline symbol on the attribute bar of the library card), then only vampires minions who have that Discipline can play it.
Each of a vampire's Discipline symbols is in the shape of either a square or a diamond. A square-shaped Discipline symbol means that the vampire has one level of that Discipline, the basic level; he can use only the basic (plain text) effect listed on a card that requires that Discipline. A Discipline symbol within a diamond signifies that the vampire has an additional level of that Discpline, the superior level, and therefore may opt to use either the basic (plain text) or the superior (bold) effect listed on the card (but not both). A minion with an inferior discipline (shown by a square) may only use the inferior level of a card which is written in plain print font.  A minion with a superior discipline (shown by a diamond) may use a card at either one of the two levels of a card; the superior level is written in the bold print font.
Some library cards have multiple Discipline symbols on the attribute bar. Some of the effects listed on these cards require one of the Disciplines listed, while other effects require another listed Discipline, and some effects require the vampire to possess several Disciplines. Each effect shows the icon(s) of the Discipline(s) required.
  1. Group: Each vampire belongs to a specific group, identified by a number above the upper left corner of the text box. A player's crypt must be built using vampires from a single group or from two consecutive groups. This does not restrict a Methuselah from stealing vampires from other groups through play, however. Cards from some older sets do not have this designation. For those cards, the ones with an expansion set symbol (an icon in the upper right corner of the card) are treated as Group 2 vampires; the others are Group 1 vampiiconmiscadvancedres.
  2. Advancement: An advancement card is a type of vampire card for your crypt. An advancement card looks just like a regular crypt card except that it has an Advancement icon under the clan icon.
The advancement card is a vampire card in all respects, so it can be influenced in the normal manner. In addition, if you already control the advancement or the associated regular "base" vampire and the other version of the vampire is in your uncontrolled region, then you can spend 4 transfers and 1 pool to move the vampire card from your uncontrolled region to the controlled vampire card (place the advancement card on top of the base card). The two cards effectively merge to form a single vampire.
The particulars of this merge are as follows. The counters and cards on the vampire remain. The advancement and the base card are treated as a single vampire card, even if sent to the uncontrolled region somehow, until the vampire is burned. Any effects in play that targeted the vampire now target the merged version.
When merged, the text on the base card still applies, but the rest of the card is ignored (capacity, Disciplines, etc.). The advancement card applies in full. If the advancement card conflictsiconmiscmergedold with the base card (a different sect, for example), the advancement card has precedence. Some merged cards have an additional effect that only applies if the card is merged with its base card. Such an effect is identified in the card text by a "merged" icon.
The advanced vampire (merged or not) will contest other copies of the same vampire (advanced or not) in play, as usual.