In the second part of this interview (check out part one here) the conversation turns to the Vampire: The Eternal Struggle ccg (V:TES) and its future
FTN: With the Sherlock Holmes books coming out of copyright there’s a lot of games coming out based on him, have you seen any of them?
MN: I’ve got the old Baker Street game, the book of stories, that’s quite cool but obviously once you’ve done them all, you’ve done them all. I haven’t tried any of the new ones yet
FTN: Have you seen a Study in Emerald?
MN: Ah no, I thought about backing it but in the end I didn’t because I’m not a fan of deck builders, I’m a big CCG player; I play Magic (The Gathering) loads, I play V:TES loads. I still play V:TEs loads.
I’m actually designing the cards for the V:TES community right now, we’re hoping it will come back into print so fingers crossed something might happen and if it does we hope our cards will get used for it, so watch this space!
FTN: So is there a plan to reprint V:TES or bring out a new edition?
MN: It is sort of a game that won’t die, really, because Wizards (of the Coast) had it for four years and sort of dropped it, So White Wolf restarted it and kept the same rules, in or around 2000, I think.
It even survived the CCP takeover for a number of years until they decided, eventually, that they weren’t going to make any more sets, but we are still playing the game. The fan club VEKN nominated a few of us to develop official cards to keep the environment moving while we wait to see what happens.
We released the first set at the European championships in Stockholm last year (2013), we released the second set which was officially released in Mannheim, at the European Championship a few weeks ago. We had 100-120 players, which was good.
So yeah, I need to talk to the other guys about what we’re doing this year for a set while maybe something official to do with the game goes on in the background.
FTN: Kickstart a new starter set perhaps?
MN: There’s licensing issues because you need to get the IP from White Wolf and Wizards, both of them have to agree it’s okay
FTN: Well, White Wolf don’t seem to be using any of that IP lately.
MN: True, they’re basically just an imprint now, so you’d need CCP’s permission and it’s not really Wizards, it’s actually Hasbro. So you have to get Hasbro’s lawyers to agree. They’re like “We’re too busy doing Transformers something or other,” but yeah, if it were to come back I can see that a Kickstarter would make sense as a starting point because you’re going to need a new base set to get a new wave of players in because that’s the hardest issue right now.
We still get new players that show up to our events or our newsletters, or our meet up groups or whatever. It’s like we’d love to get you into the game we can give you a load of spare cards and that’ll be some fun but there’s a key, maybe 12-20 chase cards that you really need as a new player, which we just can’t give away.
So they’ll all need to be in a new base set, if that happens then yeah, we’re cooking.
FTN: That would be cool
MN: Yeah, FFG has proved it works with Netrunner, AEG just rebooted Doomtown, which is another game I love but I’m on the fence right now; I’ve got loads of Doomtown cards but they’ve changed it just enough that you can’t use the old cards, so I’m like “Do I buy them and start all over again?” It’s hard because it’s a great, great, game. The mechanic with the card values in the corners and pulling the poker hands for combat is genius, absolute genius, I’m so jealous that’s something I didn’t invent, it’s really, really clever.
FTN: So what websites should people check if they want to keep up with your goings on?
MN: I have a blog called Gameaholic, I’m on Facebook, I’m on twitter… I don’t really understand twitter but I’m trying!
I’m also involved in a community site called Frothers Unite if you’re into fantasy miniatures you go to The Miniatures Page to talk about them or Frothers, basically the two places you go to talk about them online.
Our place (Frothers) has no doghouse, so there’s a lot of swearing, it’s got quite a reputation, So yeah, I was involved in setting that up and still support it, we do Salute every year, we do display games at salute and get very, very drunk and swear a lot. We get quite a lot of industry types in as well.
FTN: Sounds great! We look forward to seeing what happens next!