Episode 012 : King of the Castle

Phil, Jeremy and special guest Dan recap their most recent local Store Championship.

Phil and Patrick

Phil and Patrick


SHOW GUIDE:
0:00 Introduction
11:23 Listener Mail
18:07 Announcements
31:52 King of the Castle

LINKS:
World Wrestling Federation
JamesTeki
The Effect of Player Skill on Netrunner Win Rates by Alexfrog

Send us feedback at feedback{at}netrunomicon{dot}com!

Crossroad Games Store Champion Top 4 (left to right) - Patrick, Andrew, Phil and Zeb

Crossroad Games Store Champion Top 4 (left to right) – Patrick, Andrew, Phil and Zeb

Phil’s Store Championship 1st Place Decklists

Hey Interwebs! Below are my 1st place decklists from our local Store Championship. Instead of doing a full tournament write up we are going to do a podcast episode about the Store Championship so stay tuned for episode 12! I need to give a special shout out to Monster Rob for helping me with these decklists.

Return of the Noise (46 cards)

Noise: Hacker Extraordinaire

Noise

“I never left bitches!” – Noise

Events (9)
2 Deja Vu
3 Easy Mark • • •
1 Stimhack
3 Sure Gamble

Hardware (7)
2 Clone Chip •• ••
3 Grimoire
2 Plascrete Carapace

Resources (7)
1 Aesop’s Pawnshop ••
3 Kati Jones
3 Wyldside

Icebreakers (6)
1 Corroder
2 Crypsis
2 Mimic
1 Yog.0

Programs (17)
3 Datasucker
3 Djinn
3 Imp
2 Keyhole
3 Parasite
3 Sahasrara •• •• ••

Boring Old HB FA (49 cards)

Haas-Bioroid: Engineering the Future

HB

Vanilla > Chocolate

Agendas (11)
3 Accelerated Beta Test
3 Efficiency Committee
2 Gila Hands Arcology
3 Project Vitruvius

Assets (8)
3 Adonis Campaign
3 Jackson Howard • • •
2 Melange Mining Corp

Upgrades (3)
3 SanSan City Grid ••• ••• •••

Operations (8)
3 Biotic Labor
2 Green Level Clearance
3 Hedge Fund

Barriers (8)
1 Eli 1.0
2 Heimdall 1.0
3 Ice Wall • • •
2 Wall of Static

Code Gates (4)
2 Enigma
1 Viktor 2.0
1 Viper

Sentries (7)
2 Ichi 1.0
3 Rototurret
2 Sherlock 1.0

Episode 011 : Tip Top Shaper

Phil and Jeremy talk about all things Shaper in this jam packed episode!

SHOW GUIDE:
0:00 Introduction
5:19 Listener Mail
24:55 Announcements
48:55 Tip Top Shaper

LINKS:
Sherlock Holmes
NRTM
ANR Tracker
The Color Wheel of Netrunner by Alexfrog

Send us feedback at feedback{at}netrunomicon{dot}com!

Running with Scissors : Street Chess

Hello Interwebs! This is your friendly neighbourhood Phil the Netrunmancer here. It has been awhile since I have posted to the blog so I thought I would talk about a deck that I have been playing recently for my triumphate return. This is a deck that I worked on that focuses on using the Shaper identity Exile in conjunction with the Caïssa program Pawn to create a draw engine that triggers while running. I have played this deck a handful of times and have had some moderate amount of success with it. Here is the deck:

Street Chess

Exile

I wear a hood under a popped collar cause I’m cool damnit!

Exile: Streethawk (46 cards)

Events (13)
1 Levy AR Lab Access
3 Quality Time
3 Scavenge
3 Sure Gamble
3 Test Run

Hardware (12)
1 Akamatsu Mem Chip
3 Clone Chip
3 Deep Red •••
1 E3 Feedback Implants ••
2 Plascrete Carapace
2 R&D Interface

Resources (6)
3 Daily Casts
2 Kati Jones
1 Same Old Thing

Icebreakers (6)
1 Cyber-Cypher
1 Deus X
1 Femme Fatale •
2 Knight ••••
1 Snowball

Programs (9)
2 Magnum Opus
3 Pawn •••
2 Scheherazade ••
2 Self-modifying Code

Not bad right? A great deal of thought has gone into this decklist. A special shout out to Monster Rob who consulted on this deckbuild. The deck is not perfect by any means but this deck has a significant amount of potential. Let me break it down for you.

The Programs:

Pawn

“The older I grow, the more I value pawns.” – Paul Keres

Pawn is definitely an all-star in this deck. You might even call it a Pawn Star! (DISCLAIMER: The Netrunomicon is not responsible for brain damage suffered from terrible puns.) The way Pawn works in this deck is every time you make a successful run you want to be trashing an installed Pawn on an ICE for a Pawn in the heap thereby drawing a card theoretically every time you make a successful run. John Masonri eat your heart out. It is crucial to get a Pawn in the Heap as soon as possible to get set up for your attack run and once you see the second Pawn you are in business. Of course this combo requires that Deep Red be in play in order to guarantee that the newly replaced Pawn gets installed immediately on ICE that is hopefully the only ICE protecting a Central. We’ll talk about Deep Red later.

So now that we have a Exile + Pawn + Deep Red draw engine up and running, why not make some money off of it? That is where Scheherazade comes into play. Once you add Scheherazade into the mix, now every time you make a successful Pawn swap on a successful run, not only are you drawing a card every time but you are also getting a credit to boot! Did someone say Professional Contacts while running? Yes please! Unfortunately with the recent Caïssa + Scheherazade ruling, the only Caïssa that can benefit from Scheherazade is Pawn. Luckily that ruling only hurts this deck by two cards. Potential targets for Scheherazade include Pawn, Self-Modifying Code, Test Run targets, and Cyber-Cypher.

This deck does not need a significant amount of money to be successful but it does need a cash infusion here and there to keep it sustainable. Magnum Opus is the bread and butter money maker in this deck.

Self-Modifying Code needs no introduction. Knight is usually the primary target for SMC but in a pinch I will grab a Pawn to get my draw engine started. In times of need I can also rely on SMC to get either Snowball or Cyber-Cypher to get me through when I absolutely need to.

The Icebreakers:

Knight

“In blitz, the knight is stronger than the bishop.” – Vlastmil Hort

As soon as Knight hit the meta I knew it would be a good card and it has not disappointed my expectations in the least. Knight is the Rockstar of the deck. Once Deep Red hits the board Knight becomes a significant threat to the Corporation. Installing Knight mid run via cards like Self-Modifying Code or Clone Chip and have it immediately hosted on ICE is bonkers. The key thing to remember with Knight is that it can be moved to different ICE allowing you to keep early pressure on both Centrals and Remotes when needed. I have included one E3 Feedback Filter in the deck to support my Knights. Last night while playing a game I was getting through Archers for four to five credits thanks to Knight + E3. Nasty! The secondary effect of Knight is that it acts as a pseudo Parasite because a Corp player is usually liable to trash any ICE that is hosting those aggravating Knights. It’s a win win win!

There are very few pieces of ICE that Knight can’t break on its own. That is where Femme Fatale comes into play. Femme can target that advanced Hadrian’s Wall that is out of Knight range. She also serves as the decks primary Killer. Femme is typically the target for Test Run early game and Scavenge makes it easy to keep her targeted on different ICE throughout the game.

Snowball and Cyber-Cypher are included as supplementary breakers for late game when there is just too much ICE to handle between Knight and Femme.

Deus X was included for the Jinteki match up as a direct counter to Ronin and Snares! It also doesn’t hurt to have against annoying large Bioroids like Janus and Heimdalls.

The Hardware:
If Pawn and Knight are the All-star and Rockstar of the deck, than Deep Red is the workhorse. Deep Red is the keystone of this deck and without it the deck would not function. It is integral that Deep Red get installed as soon as possible to make it possible for Pawn and Knight to enter play immediately onto ICE. The other bonus of Deep Red is that it will float the memory of Knight freeing up your main memory for Magnum Opus and your breaker suite.

Unfortunately this deck cannot host its entire suite (Femme Fatale + Cyber Cypher + Snowball + Magnum Opus = 5 MU) with the default four memory. That is where Akamatsu Mem Chip comes into play. Having only one copy in your deck might not seem like a lot but the draw capability of this deck is pretty crazy so the chances of you seeing the Mem Chip midgame is pretty good. The same logic also applies to E3 Feedback Implants.

E3 pairs very well with Knight, allowing you to break multiple subroutine ICE for cheaper. E3 is also an excellent counter to the larger Bioroids out there such as Janus that can be pesky when your best breaker can’t break anything larger than seven strength.

Clone Chip usually serves to get Knight back into play after it has been trashed. Very rarely do I target anything else but on the off chance it can serve to get a Pawn back into play when the draw engine gets broken.

R&D Interface is the kill shot for this deck. If the game is going in your favor you should be able to set up a very easy R&D lock without much trouble. I have thought about swapping RDI out for Indexing but more on that later…

Finally Plascrete is must have for this deck. With the Pawn draw engine you want to be running often and flatline decks can very easily ruin your day. I am seriously considering adding a third Plascrete because of how essential it has become especially in this day and age of Power Shutdown Shenanigans.

The Events:

Scavenge

I like junk in my trunk.

The events for this deck are pretty straight forward. Sure Gamble is a no brainer. Test Run is the bee’s knees. Enough said.

Quality Time will get you a hefty dose of card draw infusion when you need it. I have not had any problems playing QT and finding cards I don’t mind discarding and in some cases I almost want to discard certain cards such as Pawn.

Scavenge is a powerhouse for Exile. Most often the target for Scavenge will be either Femme or Cyber-Cypher. I love Scavenging and installing the same card with Exile giving you a card draw at the same time. Heck yes!

Levy AR Lab Access is the reset button and is not to be played lightly. In every game that I have played with this deck I have come very close to running out of cards in the Stack. The problem with Levy is that it breaks the Pawn draw engine because without a Pawn in the Heap the engine does not work. Break glass only if necessary.

The Resources:

Kati Jones

KATI JONES EVERYBODY!!!!

Kati Jones is the backup to Magnum Opus. Between KJ and MO you should have at least one of them in your starting hand.

This is a Daily Casts deck. This deck wants to run, so freeing up Clicks is just gravy.

Same Old Thing is the backup to Levy AR Lab Access. Never discard it. “It is good practice to backup the backup.”

What Works:
This deck in motion is killer. There are so many tricks packed in here that the Corp player will definitely be surprised if he is unprepared. Getting into servers early to midgame is typically not a problem.

Once the Pawn draw engine is up and running you’d be surprised at how effective it can be. Its essentially John Masanori and Professional Contacts with none of the downsides such as receiving tags or spending five credits up front. If you have all three Pawns in play (2 on ICE + 1 in the Heap) you can basically get two cards and two credits ever run. Crazytown!

Corporations can try to stop the Pawn chain by trashing ICE. No big deal. You want the Corp to trash their ICE. They can also try to stack multiple ICE on certains which can slow things down but if they are focusing on Centrals they are neglecting remotes.

This deck can really bring the early pressure while building its rig in the process. Knight is a total monster. I very rarely find that I have problems getting into servers when the deck is jiving.

On top of everything else this deck is just fun!

If your gauge of success is judged by the percentage of wins let me break down my record for you. I have played a total of ten games and I have lost four games and I have tied once sitting at match point. Two of my losses came from Scorch Earth flatlines which have proven to be the biggest problem for this deck. During another loss I sat on match point while seeing over ten cards during R&D accesses. Truthfully I am stilling learning how to utilize this deck because there is a definite learning curve.

What Doesn’t:
This deck is not without its problems. I hate to admit it but the deck is a combo deck. *CRIES* Exile + Pawn + Deep Red is a combo. In theory the Pawn draw engine could work without Deep Red. It would just be slow and cumbersome and not worth the time. It takes some preparation to get the engine rolling. The nice thing is that you don’t have to sit on your butt waiting for all of the pieces to fall into place. This is a deck that builds in motion but it can become problematic when the momentum stalls especially if Magnum Opus gets nuked.

The deck is pretty resilient to program trashing from cards like Power Shutdown and Grim but it really hurts when Magnum Opus gets trashed. It is very important to keep Magnum alive or you run the risk of coming to a screeching halt. This decks likes to be running and gaining all at the same time. If you aren’t gaining from your runs the deck is not living up to its full potential.

A number of my losses have come from Scorch flatlines. The problem is that this deck wants to run often and will leave itself exposed against the SEA Source + Scorch kill despite attempts to play around it. A third Plascrete might be necessary just to stay alive.

With so many tutors in this deck another problem is when a card you need is in your hand. This almost happened to me in a game last night where I trashed Clone Chip to retrieve a Self-Modifying from the Heap thereby drawing a card. I needed to use that SMC to tutor for Cyber-Cypher so if I ended up drawing the sole copy I would have been screwed. Just be mindful of the risk.

Pawn can also get in the way of Knight at certain points during the game. You don’t want to install Pawn on a Central that you expect to run on using Knight.

Lastly, this deck is not the easiest to pilot. This deck takes time to learn. I still don’t feel like I have even unlocked its full potential.

What Might Change:
This is the first iteration of this deck. I don’t quite think it is Tier 1 just yet but I have faith that it could be. I have some different ideas swimming around in my head. I think this deck really needs to have three Plascretes because of how much this deck likes to be on the run. It needs a safety net to do what it wants to do. I think the deck could possibly live without Kati Jones and rely solely on Magnum Opus as its main economy. Indexing may be a better choice for this deck over R&D Interface. A third Self-Modifying Code might be useful but deck space is already limited. E3 may be expendable but I really like having it.

Conclusion:
Well there you have it, Street Chess in all its glory. It is kind of shocking to me that the Deep Red is only one influence and makes this deck viable. It almost makes me feel bad for Anarch. Shaper can include all of the Anarch fun tricks (I am looking at you Parasite) and still have all of their tutors. I am going to keep tweaking Street Chess to get the perfect deck balance. Hopefully I can raise it to the tournament level tier with more plays, changes and experience.

Episode 010 : Anatomy 101

In the 10th episode of the Netrunomicon podcast the Netrunmancers, Phil and Jeremy, overview the Turn and Run Timing Structures and review the Go7 Gaming series of Netrunner products.

SHOW GUIDE:
0:00 Introduction
2:11 Very Special Listener Mail
12:04 Announcements
32:44 Anatomy 101

LINKS:
Highlander
Go7 Gaming
Go7 Gaming Kickstarter
Android: Netrunner FAQ

Send us feedback at feedback{at}netrunomicon{dot}com!

Episode 009 : Talking Tech

In this 9th installment of the Netrunomicon podcast, the Netrunmancers, Phil, Jeremy, and Monster Rob, have a round table discussion with Tech Talk’s very own Eric “Scud” Rampson.

SHOW GUIDE:
0:00 Introduction
11:49 Announcements
19:58 Talking Tech
1:22:06 CLICK! CLICK! Dont Flatline Me!

LINKS:
Tech Talk
Scud: The Disposable Assassin
Dreamblade
Team Covenant’s Netrunner & AGOT – Damon Stone In-depth Interview – GenCon 2013
“My Plugged In Tour 1st place lists” by Travis R. Chance

Send us feedback at feedback@netrunomicon.com!

My Personal Evolution

Hello Runners! Jeremy and I had the opportunity to go to the Plugged-In Tour and we had an excellent time. We recorded two podcast episodes on the road, so make sure to give them a listen if you haven’t already had a chance to check them out. I have had a week to decompress from Plugged-In. Here are my thoughts.

The Plugged-In Tour!

Going into Plugged-In Tour, I didn’t really know what to expect. To be honest, this was the first real Netrunner event that I had been able to attend since I missed my local Regionals. I must give a big thank you to Fantasy Flight Games for providing this opportunity. In a sense, this event was my proving grounds. Producing a podcast implies a certain working knowledge of the game and it adds some undo pressure to perform. I would have been very disappointed in myself if I had been skunked at both tournaments. It was my own personal goal to do well enough to be proud of the results. I was very comfortable with the decks that I had chosen but I was still nervous needless to say. I never expected to actually win a tournament!

No one was more surprised than me that I won! Over both events I went 14-4 against some incredibly tough competition. I was proud of my results. I was not proud because I won; I was proud because I felt like I played well against very strong opposition. Did I mention it was tough? If you want to check out my decklists you can see them here. Winning one of the tournaments was awesome, but the most rewarding experience of the whole event was how it opened my eyes to world of Netrunner beyond my local meta.

I have the privilege of living in New England, which turns out to be quite the melting pot of different Netrunner metas. People from Maine to Rhode Island to Vermont all showed up to put their decks to the test. I saw a Cerebral Imaging deck perform admirably, I lost handily to a Whizzard Control Deck, I played against some tried and true Andromeda decks, I inched out a win against a scary Next Design big money deck, I got pretty beat up from a Jinteki deck, I almost lost to a Professor deck and I even saw Darwin used quite often as a solitary breaker. I was shocked at the amount of diversity I saw at both tournaments.

Manchester, NH Faction Breakdown

I love Netrunner. I really do. No other game has captured my attention the way that Netrunner has in the last year. I love everything about it and going to Plugged-In only strengthened that love affair. Playing at a high level of competition really excited me and seeing all sorts of different working decks filled me with joy for the game. It made me realize that there is no perfect answer in Netrunner. This realization has made me take a step back and analyze my personal game. I recently read a thread entitled “What’s holding back your potential as a player?” where the author put forth the question of what is holding you back from being a better player. It really made me think.

After much Netrunner soul searching I came the to understanding that what is holding me back as a player is that I only play what I consider to be good. As a self proclaimed Spike player, I tend to focus on the strongest winning deck formulas. Lately I have been focusing on strong Runner decks like Good Stuff Gabe and strong Corporation archetypes such as HB Fast Advance. That mode of thinking really limits my game in a number of ways. I have only been playing in my comfort zone. For example, as the corporation I hate having an agenda installed in a remote server so I play fast advance to avoid that. Focusing on my comfort zone as a player only makes me a better player in one aspect of a game that has many aspects.

My plan for the future is to expand my Netrunner repertoire. I want to become more comfortable with Jinteki. I want to get better at playing for the flatline with Weyland. I want to start playing Shaper. I want to explore under utilized cards. I want to stop relying on fast advance. I want to break away from the norm and explore the meta from different angles. If I do all of these things I can only become a better player overall. Plugged-In opened my eyes. This is my personal evolution.

– Phil the Netrunmancer

Episode 008 : Round 2… FIGHT!

This is for you Monster Rob!

This is for you Monster Rob!

This is the second installment of the Netrunmancers go to Plugged-In. In this jam-packed episode, Phil and Jeremy talk about spoiled cards from the Plugged-In Tour events and they also interview Damon Stone and Stuart Wilson from Fantasy Flight Games.

SHOW GUIDE:
0:00 Introduction
3:32 Round 2… FIGHT!
18:24 Announcements
48:50 Interview with Stuart Wilson
59:04 Interview with Damon Stone

LINKS:
Mortal Kombat
Pandemonium Books and Games
“The Deck” by Alexfrog
The Legend of Zelda
Plugged-in to New England’s Central Servers

Jeremy getting schooled by Matt at Plugged-In

Jeremy getting schooled by Matt at Plugged-In

Send us feedback at feedback@netrunomicon.com!

Episode 007 : Plugged-In

In this episode, Phil and Jeremy discuss the Plugged-In event while driving to and from the event.

SHOW GUIDE:
0:00 Introduction
14:44 Listener Mail
25:23 Announcements
38:19 Plugged-In

LINKS:
Tinkering with Kit by Monster Rob
Will You Plug-in?
Myriad Games

plugged-in-winners

The proud winners!

Send us feedback at feedback@netrunomicon.com!

The Cards My Destiny

Hello Runners! Back when I originally purchased the Netrunomicon domain, I had intended the website to be a blog dedicated to Android: Netrunner. Around that same time that I purchased the domain, I had also been very interested in podcasting and thought maybe I could tie a podcast into the blog at some point down the road. The way the website played out, the blog didn’t really take off, and I decided to set that project aside and come back to it later. Now that the podcast is up and running with most of the kinks worked out, I’ve been thinking of getting the blog back together. Don’t fret! The podcast is not going anywhere.

Android: Netrunner The Card Game

By no means do I consider myself a Netrunner expert, but I do consider myself a decent player with a real passion for this game. My hope for writing (and podcasting) about Netrunner is to strengthen my own game and hopefully people will find my articles useful in the process. The overall plan for the blog is to write as often as I want with no exact release schedule. I might even try to persuade some other people to also write for the blog in the future.

To give you a sense of what the future holds for the Netrunomicon blog here is a showcase of some of the categories that you can expect:

  • The Metaverse:
  • The Metaverse is a series of articles intended for analyzing cards or decks that have a significant influence on the metagame of Android:Netrunner. That is so meta!

  • Scanning the Net:
  • It is important in Android:Netrunner to keep an eye on the horizon in order to plan for changes coming down the pipeline and adjust accordingly. Scanning the Net will help players do this by scrutinizing cards previewed by Fantasy Flight Games that will be added to the game in a future release.

  • Running with Scissors:
  • The world of a Runner is filled with great risk and even greater reward. Running with Scissors will focus on the Runner side of the world.

  • The Corporium:
  • You cannot have good without evil or a ying without a yang. The same holds true in Android:Netrunner. You cannot have a Runner without a Corporation. The Corporium is a series of articles dedicated to everything Corporation.

  • The Sprawl:
  • The Sprawl encompasses everything else that does not fit within the above categories. Think of it as an uncategorized category.

This is the beginning of a beautiful blog.

– Phil the Netrunmancer