I borrowed this game from the local game store last weekend, and we've played twice so far, both times we me as Dracula. I lost both times, so I'm a little grumpy.
The first time we played I pretty much deserved to lose - I didn't play so well, the hunters were constantly on to me, and at night-time I hid instead of pursuing the hunters. Eventually they cornered me and took me down.
The second time, though, I felt like I was robbed of my rightful victory. I was at 4 points, had two bitten hunters (plus Mina), and had them scattered about and half of them with no items. Then the card that takes me anywhere came up, and I had two vampires in my encounter hand. My first instinct was to run away as far as possible, to Spain or the UK - but then I thought, it's night time, I should pursue. Using the double-move card, I played both vampires along with a Hide on the second one so I could protect it with a minion, and then I attacked one of the hunters. I figured I'll try to get a bat-ending, to push another card into the trail and put my vampires one closer to maturing.
Three bad dice rolls later, my poor Drac was stabbed through the heart while trying to bat-scape away.
I guess there's something of a learning curve to the game. I noticed that Escape (Mist) usually saves you from a "Kill" result, so I thought Escape (Bat) would be as good. It might have been nice if there was a cross-reference table in the book that shows all the results. I suppose that next time I would know that attacking with 7 Blood isn't a very good idea, or that if you have two well hidden vamps you should just pass the time until they mature. Still, I felt that I was doing very well, and it's a bit annoying when three dice rolls turn all that around.
Other than that... in both games, the hunters had me pinned down almost all the time. Once they figure you out - for example, if you go to Castle Dracula to heal - it's very hard to outmaneuver them. Especially with the anti-sea ally. You pretty much need that move-to-any-city-on-the-board card to escape if they pin you down in Eastern Europe.
You feel very helpless as Dracula during the day when there's two hunters on your trail.
The heavnly hosts and consecrated grounds seem to gravitate to that east-west border pretty quickly.
All in all it's a fun game... it's going back to the store on Friday, we'll try squeeze in one more game tomorrow, and maybe I'll manage another during the week.