This year I played the First Chance Qualifier, and oh boy, the meta game surely is different to the other tournaments during an EC. Everybody seems to pack their favorite wall or combat deck and enjoys bashing other players decks. Lots of Animalism and Celerity combat decks, lots of Auspex Walls and the occasional what-the-f…-deck at the tables. Of course, this is my impression based only on the tables I played. Since the judges enforced that players after being ousted must remain at their tables or leave the room, I wasn’t able to get a better overview of what was played. I had three very interesting games on Sunday, even though my results were not really good during this day (and the EC in general).
Overall the European Championship was very good event. Johannes,Andreas and Erol managed to organize this event were efficiently, even though the very small organization staff led to some small delays here and there. Many, many thanks to both them (and every other player who helped with the organization. The tournaments on Sunday had the highest attendance rate with 130 players in total (90 players in the FCQ and 40 players in the Day 2 tournament). This was more than I expected, because the overall number of active players in Europe has been declining in the past 2-3 years (see Hungary for example). The catering during the event was very good, given the fact that the lunch was included in the registration fee, and there was food and drinks available on location from the morning to the evening with very reasonable prices. The only real drawback was that the location was closed somewhat early in the evening, and you had to resort to playing elsewhere (e.g. the hotel).
- The Danish players and the (now former) European VTES Champion decided to play boardgames on Friday instead of VTES. This is nothing I condemn. On the contrary it shows that there’s a bond and share of common interest between the VTES players all over the world. Ben Peal was quoted “I swear…V:TES is less of a game and more of a weird-ass fraternity.” just before the EC. Generally I agree, but I’d rather call the Continental Championships a gathering of friends and families. Sometimes you meet with the weird friend or a rather distant relative, but otherwise it’s a really pleasant experience.
- The presentation of The Unaligned set was really pleasant. Mike and Ben not only showed the cards, but also gave some background information why they had chosen a particular angle for that clan, or from which canon context a particular crypt or library originated.
- I really appreciated the prize support given to each winner of the tournaments. Each of winners received a custom made wooden deck box in the form of a coffin. See pictures below.
Special thanks to the Portuguese players with whom I shared a nice dinner on Saturday evening, to the three Italian players from Brescia (three very interesting, very different games on each of the three tournaments I played) and of course everyone who made the effort to come to the European Championship this year. We’re all getting older, having more responsibilities compared to like 10 years ago, so making it possible to come to the EC is no small feat.
I hope to see you in Warsaw again!