Today's social featured arguablely the longest 4 player game I've ever been involved in. Phillip (playing old-school Ventrue Vote & Bleed, and starting) was bleeding Val (Guhuri Restricted Vitae & some vote) bleeding me (new school Ventrue vote and vote) bleeding Kevin (!Toreador sneak bleed).
The game started fairly slowly, since we were all bringing out fairly large minions. With all the Zillah's Valleys and one of the Information Highways in the bottom 10 cards, and not drawing many masters, I was slower to get going than I hoped. I was always going to be in trouble as I only drew 2 masters in the first 3rd of my deck, so later one I was jamming rather horribly on masters. I also erred in the balance of vote cards, and didn't have enough aggrssive votes to really pressurise Kevin when I needed to, and, with the number of big vampires around, calling Honour the Elders ended up helping the table fairly equally. Kevin, relying on the power bleed from the Palle Grande was able to oust Phillip, although Phillip did come close to ousting Val a couple of times, but Val's farming was just good enough to hold him off. I did eventually oust Kevin, after much to-ing and fro-ing, but eventually minion superiority meant Val was able to end oust me (Val had 8 vampires to my 6). Considering that my cheapest two minions were 6 and 7 caps, and Val vampires ranging from 4 up to 11 (Eze) says a lot of how the farming went through the course of the game.
The game had several unusual events - I had to yield two titles due to contests, and had to burn my protected resources to eventually bleed Kevin out, which was extremely annoying. Both Kevin and I decked ourselves, and, when Val ousted me, he was down to only a couple of cards left in his library.
The Ventrue deck does show promise (with the Ventrue headquarters and Gustav, I could towards the end generate 17 votes without modifers, despite the yielded titles), but I do need to add a few more aggressive votes, and work on the master balance a bit. Fitting in a couple of vessels will a) provide an additional pool gain option, and the trifle will also be useful to help cycle through the masters a bit faster.
After the marathon, Kevin left, and we played a three player with the intention of playing fast. I (Serpentis bleed deck, mildly tweaked) was bleeding Phillip (Brujah concept deck) bleeding Val (Lasombra combat & bleed), with Phillip starting. I got off to a fast start, with an early hunting ground and a path not to long thereafter, and, since the bleed deck is fast, was able to sweep the table in less than 30 minutes. The combination of the path & the eternal mask is truly scary. This deck will suffer against bounce, and can be run out of S:CE, it's probably the best of my attempts at a stealth bleed deck.
An interesting, and rather educational evening.