We’ve been spending much of our development time on new library and crypt cards for a big Sabbat-themed set. This takes a lot of work to make sure all the interlocking parts mesh well enough together. We still have a lot more work to do on this, but we’ll be starting playtest on it later this year.
In the meantime, we are working on a mini set of 22 vampires for the major Sabbat clans. We’re going to send the first round of this mini set to our playtesters tomorrow. If you want to join us for a bit of fun, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to get on our mailing list.
Our blog has been in hibernation a bit this winter, but we have been working on our next set.
In the meantime, we have created a new page on the right sidebar which will host all our sets as they are published.
Check out our new Set PDFs page.
The last two Aye/Orun Enhancers we are profiling are Magnificence of Cagn and Orchestrating Ashé. These two cards require three or more Aye and three or more Orun. This is quite difficult to set up and thus the strong cards below are designed to have significant impacts on the game.
The major Laibon legacies lack access to significant stealth. Magnificence of Cagn is designed to give them powerful pseudo-stealth. The “except by older Laibon” restriction is a nod to canon. Some of the oldest Laibon claim to disbelieve that Aye and Orun even exist in the World of Darkness.
The Yoruba believe that ashé is the supernatural force that runs through all things; ashé is the power to make things happen.
We believe that taking action is the best way to win at V:tES. Orchestrating Ashé provides Transcendent Laibon great flexibility to push through potent actions.
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
The next two Aye/Orun Enhancers we are profiling are called Things Fall Apart & The Centre Cannot Hold. The card names are lifted directly from the opening stanza of William Butler Yeats’ famous poem The Second Coming. Not coincidentally, Things Fall Apart was previously chosen by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe to be the title of his well-regarded English-language novel dealing with the clash between colonialism and traditional African culture.
The cards themselves are pretty straightforward. Things Fall Apart is a reaction that cancels an action modifier, and The Centre Cannot Hold is an action modifier that cancels a reaction. We know that some people dislike cancellation cards, but we felt that these minion cards, as opposed to out-of-turn Masters like Direct Intervention and Dark Influences, are better suited to the task.
Cards requiring three or more Aye or Orun should be quite useful so we wanted to provide some strong incentives to use the them and try out the Aye/Orun Accelerators in Champions of Cagn.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
—William Butler Yeats (The Second Coming, 1919)
As mentioned previously, one of our main goals was to give more options for the Aye/Orun Concept. The following Laibon-only items can provide creative deck-builders with the full breadth of strategies for their favorite legacy.
There are several Laibon artifacts mentioned in Kindred of the Ebony Kingdom. We used the source material as inspiration for these equipment cards which confer some traits of the particular animal skin to the bearer.
Skin of the King (Level Two Artifact): This misleading name describes any hide, skin, skull or hoof from a dead animal ghoul that has been enchanted in the old ways of the Nagloper. By somehow donning this object, the wearer appears to onlookers as an animal of the sort used to create the artifact. Gazelle and monkey skins were sometimes made for spying purposes, but lion, hyena and crocodile artifacts are more common. Animals of the artifact’s origin regard the wearer as a specimen to be feared and followed — an alpha male, if you like. The wearer’s Social Attributes may be used on fellow animals, though no Abilities may be. [KotEK, p114]
We took each of the five animals mentioned and imagined what abilities each might confer to a Laibon who is in touch with the spirit world, represented by Orun.
We invite you to compare these cards with Laptop Computer, Erebus Mask, Agate Talisman, Sport Bike, and Depravity (among others) to get a better sense of balance. Also note that the abilities are not “always on” and thus require tapping Orun to get an effect. For example, this mechanic makes Skin of the King: Crocodile quite responsible against a prey who bounces bleeds frequently.
Secrets of the Dark Continent is a new event which is designed to help the Laibon and encourage creativity with deck design.
The first ability grants any non-Laibon the chance to “go native” and explore what the Laibon sect has to offer. Mozambique Allure also does this, but we wanted to create an alternate way of allowing this that was a permanent. Compare with the relationship between Go Anarch! and either Twilight Camp or Seattle Committee.
The second ability gives a small boost to the Aye/Orun Concept. If Secrets of the Dark Continent is in play, it becomes possible to get three Aye or Orun (key to using the most powerful cards) onto the Laibon by the end of the next master phase.
The third ability is the burn/restriction clause. While this card isn’t overwhelmingly powerful, one of our goals was to stress conflict between Laibon and non-Laibon. In order for an entire crypt to join the sect, they first need another to induct them into the secret ways of the Laibon. Plus, if the Laibon are not strong enough to endure, they lose the benefits provided by their homeland.
When looking over our PDFs, we noticed there was a misprint for Blessing of Cagn–the two PDFs were different. This was caused due to version control between the various rounds of our playtest. We apologize for the error. The PDFs and vtescsv files are now up to date.