VGHVI Minecraft: May 28, 2015

Jun 14 2015

For our May Minecraft session, we pretty much hung out in the same place where we’d been in April, where Pat and (towards the end) Miranda had been building a sort of stockade village.

I flew around for a bit, and ended up returning to a large, strangely round cave nearby:

Flying around in a rainy sunset

Flying around in a rainy sunset

The entrance to the round cave

The entrance to the round cave

Looking down into the cave

Looking down into the cave

Coordinates, for my future reference

Coordinates, for my future reference

I wanted to do something with the cave, but I wasn’t sure what: the entrance in particular was so big around round that I wasn’t sure what I could do that would make it look better instead of worse. I eventually decided that I didn’t like the area right outside the entrance, so I wanted to put some color there.

The first version that I actually took a picture of. I liked the black and blue border, but the gold was a bit much.

The first version that I actually took a picture of. I liked the black and blue border, but the gold was a bit much.

Green, maybe?

Green, maybe?

Or red?

Or red?

How about purple?

How about purple?

Emerald, to match the texture of the blue?

Emerald, to match the texture of the blue?

Diamond?

Diamond?

Those were all too gaudy; maybe some gold ore?

Those were all too gaudy; maybe some gold ore?

Diamond ore?

Diamond ore?

The ores didn't work.  White?

The ores didn’t work. White?

I'm tired of doing these one at a time, let's look at three options at once.

I’m tired of doing these one at a time, let’s look at three options at once.

Black, but a darker black (and a different texture) than the outer ring.

Black, but a darker black (and a different texture) than the outer ring.

I liked the black best of the options so far; maybe add a white dot in the middle?

I liked the black best of the options so far; maybe add a white dot in the middle?

Or a white triangle?

Or a white triangle?

A gold triangle, maybe?

A gold triangle, maybe?

Or a gold dot?

Or a gold dot?

What if I stick a torch on it?

What if I stick a torch on it?

Or leave the torch but ditch the gold dot?

Or leave the torch but ditch the gold dot?

I kind of liked the look of the torch, but it seemed a bit weird sitting there on the ground in the middle, so I went back to black.

I kind of liked the look of the torch, but it seemed a bit weird sitting there on the ground in the middle, so I went back to black.

Lots of work for a carpet. And I still don’t know what to do with the cave itself! Though I later returned to another part of the area surrounding the cave entrance, this time a ledge high up on the right:

Adding a railing and leveling out a ledge

Adding a railing and leveling out a ledge

Putting in a chest and workbench

Putting in a chest and workbench

Anyways, enough of that area. I went back to the stockade village (not very far away at all):

A nice wood / river between them, you can barely see the roofs of the village

A nice wood / river between them, you can barely see the roofs of the village

What's that small hole on the right river bank?

What’s that small hole on the right river bank?

And then I saw a small hole; I went in to explore, and there was a massive cave inside! I didn’t take too many pictures, but it was one of those great Minecraft moments, where you never know what will happen when you enter a hole or go around a corner.

Lava visible through a cave tunnel

Lava visible through a cave tunnel

Emerald ore

Emerald ore

Some mine shafts

Some mine shafts

Back outside

Back outside

Anyways: the village. First, Pat and Miranda finished it off a bit more:

Finishing a house

Finishing a house

Beds inside one of the houses

Beds inside one of the houses

That room's ceiling

That room’s ceiling

A house by the river

A house by the river

A view from the top

A view from the top

Then, once they’d gotten the houses habitable, they started spawning villagers.

Spawning a villager

Spawning a villager

More villagers

More villagers

The villagers examine the structures

The villagers examine the structures

Inside a house

Inside a house

The village at dawn, with lanterns added

The village at dawn, with lanterns added

Inside the main building

Inside the main building

Villagers outside at day

Villagers outside at day

They spawned a golem, too

They spawned a golem, too

The golem is in the water

The golem is in the water

One last view of the whole village

One last view of the whole village

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Leela Patel, v. 0

Jun 13 2015

I’m trying out Leela Patel for my new runner deck. And I’m honestly not sure what else to include to synergize with the corporation’s identity. Emergency Shutdown and Crescentus will increase the number of cards that I can use my identity power on. And once I’ve bumped cards back to HQ, maybe I can try a Demolition Run? Also, derezzing ice suggest Forged Activation Orders and Compromised Employee; HQ runs suggest Sneakdoor Beta and something for multi-access.

So I threw in all of those and a bunch of other generally good criminal cards, a completely uninspired set of icebreakers based around the core Anarch breakers, and a bunch of other random stuff; the result is the following bloated (55-card!) deck:

 

Leela Patel

Leela Patel: Trained Pragmatist

Event (20)

  • 3x Account Siphon
  • 1x Demolition Run ••
  • 2x Dirty Laundry
  • 3x Emergency Shutdown
  • 3x Forged Activation Orders
  • 3x Inside Job
  • 2x Special Order
  • 3x Sure Gamble

Hardware (11)

  • 2x Clone Chip •• ••
  • 3x Desperado
  • 2x Dyson Mem Chip
  • 2x HQ Interface
  • 2x Prepaid VoicePAD

Resource (10)

  • 3x Compromised Employee
  • 2x Crash Space
  • 1x Decoy
  • 2x Security Testing
  • 2x Symmetrical Visage

Icebreaker (8)

  • 1x Cerberus “Rex” H2
  • 2x Corroder •• ••
  • 1x Faerie
  • 1x Femme Fatale
  • 1x Mimic •
  • 1x Passport
  • 1x Yog.0 •

Program (6)

  • 2x Crescentus
  • 3x Datasucker • • •
  • 1x Sneakdoor Beta

15 influence spent (max 15)
55 cards (min 45)
Cards up to The Valley

Deck built on http://netrunnerdb.com.

 

I’ve tried it out once, and it actually won: Emergency Shutdown plus Forged Activation Orders is a good combo. But there’s a lot of work to do here; I’ll play it a few more times before making changes, though.

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Cybernetics Division, v. 0

Jun 10 2015

I enjoyed my Industrial Genomics deck, but I figured it was time to move on. I was tentatively planning to do a Replicating Perfection deck, or maybe some sort of NBN, but then I looked at the new data pack, and realized that Cybernetics Division, Self-Destruct Chips, and Ryon Knight could be fun to build a deck around. Which would, of course, mean that I’d be building another kill deck! But at least with a different identity, and this time I’d try keeping it down to the minimum (well, 44 cards) instead of bloating it up, and I’d try leaving a real possibility for an agenda win.

 

Here’s the initial version:

Cybernetics Division

Cybernetics Division: Humanity Upgraded

Agenda (10)

  • 3x Accelerated Beta Test
  • 3x Project Vitruvius
  • 3x Self-Destruct Chips
  • 1x Utopia Fragment

Asset (13)

  • 3x Adonis Campaign
  • 2x Cerebral Overwriter
  • 2x Jackson Howard • •
  • 2x PAD Campaign
  • 2x Project Junebug • •
  • 1x Ronin ••••
  • 1x Sundew •••

Upgrade (2)

  • 2x Ryon Knight

Operation (7)

  • 3x Biotic Labor
  • 3x Hedge Fund
  • 1x Restructure

Barrier (4)

  • 2x Eli 1.0
  • 2x Heimdall 1.0

Code Gate (5)

  • 1x Checkpoint ••
  • 2x Hourglass
  • 2x Turing

Sentry (3)

  • 1x Cortex Lock ••
  • 2x Ichi 1.0

15 influence spent (max 15)
18 agenda points (between 18 and 19)
44 cards (min 40)
Cards up to Chrome City

 

Pretty obvious ideas: the identity and Self-Destruct Chips whittle down hand size, Cerebral Overwriter and Ryon Knight are there as traps to help with that process, Heimdall and Ichi might be windfall brain damage (but probably won’t), Ronin is there to provide a potential kill on my turn, and Junebug is there to provide a potential kill on their turn. (And I guess Cortex Lock can do that too; it’s also there because I’m going for a fast game, and Cortex Lock is cheap and is disproportionately powerful at the start.)

Checkpoint may dissuade some runs, and there are various pieces of ice designed to get the runner to waste their clicks, to activate Ryon Knight, and to just plain be tough / expensive to break. And there are a decent number of economy cards, and Biotic Labor plus three-point agendas to use them on. (I’m not sure whether I’m going to want to biotic out the Self-Destruct Chips early to let me put hand pressure or biotic out the two-pointers to help me win.) It’s low on ice in general: my feeling is that I want enough ice to let me score in the early game while the runner is setting up their rig, and then I’ll place a few more strategic pieces of ice to let me survive into the middle game, but if the game goes on for a long time then I’ll have lost.

I was hoping that there’s enough uncertainty about the meaning of both unadvanced cards and double-advanced cards for me to be able to bait the runner into wrong decisions.

 

I’ve tried it out twice so far, and my initial conclusion is: it’s definitely workable. I won both of those games, even though in both my opponent had cards to increase his hand size. (There seem to be a lot of those out these days, it seems like an area where FFG is actively exploring the design space.) One was through a flatline, the other was my first corp win via agenda points in more than two months. In particular, the number of ice actually turned out to be reasonable, and the amount of economy was also reasonable: I wasn’t swimming in money, but I had enough, and I did a reasonable job of having my scoring server alternate between agendas and Adonises. (And, uh, the occasional trap.)

I have no idea why I chose Utopia Fragment as my 3-point agenda: in this deck, its ability will almost never be relevant. And I don’t think Checkpoint is a good idea; maybe I’ll just swap that for a second Cortex Lock? I doubt that I will stick with two each of both Hourglass and Turing, but I don’t yet have a good feel for how those will play out in practice. (In particular, to what extent they will activate Ryon Knight; incidentally, another question is whether I should find room for a third copy of him.)

After my previous deck, one Ronin doesn’t feel like enough. Also, Sundew is a little too tempting / vulnerable to last long. So I may make changes that take one or both of those into account.

Cerebral Overwriter remains one of my favorite cards.

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Industrial Genomics, v. 2

Jun 04 2015

Version one of my Industrial Genomics deck was a significant change over version zero. It got rid of a lot of the random cards, and added a second Cerebral Overwriter to add more possibilities for bad things happening if my opponent ran against a double-advanced card. I took it to a tournament, it went 4-1, and I stopped losing with it at work. So clearly those changes were a big improvement: it was going to be my corp deck for Regionals, the only question is what tweaks I wanted to make.

The deck is set up to have the possibility of scoring agendas, with the Caprice + Ash + Red Herrings combo, but in practice: I never win that way. Sometimes I win through a bad R&D access; sometimes, I win through Ronins. So I wanted to increase the chance of that happening.

I swapped my third Caprice for a third Ronin, and I tweaked the ice to be a bit more straightforward: Chum was a threat that never landed, and while I still think Kitsune might have possibility, it doesn’t turn into a kill, so I removed those, added a third Komainu, and decided to experiment with Crick. That helped; after that, I noticed that I was always discarding Subliminal Messaging (and frequently not using it even when I could, because it was more valuable face down in archives), and while Cyberdex Virus Suite is a potential archives trap, I wasn’t getting hurt enough by viruses for it to be effective, and I really want the sorts of traps that can damage people. So I got rid of those and swapped in a Project Junebug (since I often end up with Ronin triple- or even quadruple-advanced), and a Zaibatsu Loyalty to try to protect against exposes.

(Incidentally, one thing I didn’t consider doing is slim the deck down from 59 cards. It works just fine with 59 cards.)

 

Here are all the changes:

  • -1 Caprice Nisei
  • -1 Cyberdex Virus Suite
  • -1 Subliminal Messaging
  • -1 Chum
  • -1 Kitsune
  • +1 Ronin
  • +1 Project Junebug
  • +1 Zaibatsu Loyalty
  • +1 Crick
  • +1 Kitsune

 

And here’s the full deck:

Industrial Genomics (59 cards)

Industrial Genomics: Growing Solutions

Agenda (10)

  • 3 Fetal AI
  • 1 Hades Fragment
  • 2 NAPD Contract
  • 1 Philotic Entanglement
  • 3 The Future Perfect

Asset (29)

  • 2 Cerebral Overwriter ** **
  • 2 Hostile Infrastructure
  • 3 Jackson Howard * * *
  • 2 Melange Mining Corp
  • 3 PAD Campaign
  • 1 Project Junebug
  • 3 Ronin
  • 3 Shi.Kyu
  • 3 Shock!
  • 3 Snare!
  • 3 Sundew
  • 1 Zaibatsu Loyalty

Upgrade (8)

  • 2 Ash 2X3ZB9CY ** **
  • 2 Caprice Nisei
  • 2 Hokusai Grid
  • 2 Red Herrings ** **

Operation (3)

  • 3 Hedge Fund

Barrier (2)

  • 1 Wall of Static
  • 1 Wall of Thorns

Code Gate (3)

  • 1 Crick
  • 2 Lotus Field

Sentry (4)

  • 1 Cortex Lock
  • 3 Komainu

 

This is the best deck that I’ve ever built, no question. My coworkers haven’t beaten it (I believe) since version 0, it went 4-1 at a casual tournament, 5-2 at Regionals, and those weren’t flukes. Honestly, I don’t understand why Industrial Genomics isn’t a lot more popular: I’m sure that there are counters, but a fairly typical scenario is that, after scaring the runner over their first Archives runs, I get a bit of asset defense to stick, which is enough to keep Melange alive for two or three turns (happily discarding an extra card each turn while I do that), at which point I have enough money to rez whatever I want. So then I have enough ice to make the runner think twice about runs on central servers, I can rez a Hostile Infrastructure to give a second layer of asset protection, and the PAD Campaigns and Sundews start giving me as much money as I want.

And, at this point, I just start double/triple/quadruple advancing assets, because money is no longer an issue. Some are Cerebral Overwriters, some are Ronins. And generally, either people go and kill themselves or I get one Ronin triple-advance and one quadruple-advanced, and win.

This takes a while, but that’s okay: there are only 10 agendas out of 59 cards, and people get nervous making runs. (And the Shi.Kyus may mean that they’ll need to steal four agendas instead of three.) But if my opponent doesn’t run, then it’ll just be harder and harder to trash assets, and I’ll build up more and more money. Which, I think, can in some circumstances be okay for the runner, if they build up lots of money too and just eat the extra trash cost, but it makes runners quite nervous to not have a clear strategy to win. Also, those 59 cards mean that it will be very hard to deck me.

I ran into a surprising number of Astrolabes at Regionals; at first, it made me unhappy, because I create new servers all the time. But, actually, it ended up fine for me: it means that I couldn’t get cheap kills from runners who don’t keep their hand full, but it also meant that runners went through their decks more quickly than they would have otherwise. Of course, I also ran into a decent number of Levys, but I’ve more than one game where runners Levied and then went through their deck a second time: I’m a lot closer to decking them than they are to decking me. (Yes, I know you technically can’t deck the runner, but net damage gets a lot more serious if you can’t draw back up after it!)

 

Like I said, I don’t understand why Industrial Genomics isn’t a lot more popular. (Other than that, well, most people don’t want to be assholes the way I do!) But probably part of that is that I’m not good enough to see the counters that would make the deck less reliable. (Or that I just don’t appreciate how reliable top-tier decks can be, because I’ve never played them: I should set my sights higher than 5-2.) Exposing is certainly one possible counter; and there have been a lot of cards recently that increase runner hand size. Maybe I should throw a second Zaibatsu Loyalty to help with the exposes? And cards that clear out the runner’s entire hand to help with large hand size? (Fortunately, I’ve already got Komainu.) And I guess I have to maintain the possibility to score, too, just in case I lose two Ronins and can’t resurrect them.

I’m getting better at faking, but I probably should occasionally put out Snares instead of leaving them in my hand. And, for that matter, I should also put out unadvanced 3-cost agendas or double-advanced 5-cost agendas, too, to increase the number of possibilities that unadvanced or double-advanced cards can represent. And maybe another Project Junebug would be good, to increase the chances that bad things happen when running against bad cards. A third Hostile Infrastructure would help, maybe a third Hokusai Grid (I really like having one on R&D; incidentally, I’m also thinking that Red Herrings is useful either in HQ or R&D).

But, if I’m going to add cards, I need to also remove cards (I don’t think I want to go to 64 cards…), and I’m not sure what. Maybe I really should give up on Caprice and Ash. (Which will give me influence for a third Cerebral Overwriter!) Maybe I can lose an ice or even two: Crick is probably not quite pulling its weight, and I could probably lose one of the barriers. Hard to say. Also, I’m considering swapping the Philotic Entanglement with a third NAPD: Philotic has some real potential to do damage, with the assistance of Shi.Kyu, so at times I’ve tried just leaving it around unadvanced for a while, but I’ve never gotten it to land a real killing blow.

Honestly, I’m not sure what I’d do next with this deck. I’m going to move on for the time being: Regionals are over, so it’s time to experiment, and it’s not a pleasant deck to play against. But I may bring it back at some point in the future, to see if I can figure out more improvements.

One response so far

Nasir, version n + 1

Jun 02 2015

I’d been doing worse and worse with my Valencia deck, so with Regionals coming up, I figured I’d pull out my Nasir deck again, to see if I thought I’d do better with it. And, playing the deck against my coworkers, I decided that Nasir was definitely the right choice: the deck can build up quite quickly to an amazing level of strength.

Looking at cards that had come out since I last played the deck, the main one that caught my eye was Study Guide: I have access to not only the credits that disappear when I hit ice but also tons of recurring icebreaker credits (up to 6 a turn!), so it seemed like I should be able to level it up quickly for free. So I tried using it in place of Gordian Blade.

And it worked pretty well: my favorite times involved seeing Orion come out, and then a few turns later I’d upped my Study Guide to strength 8, at which point Orion only costs 3 credits to break. (On which note, though: Nasir really does not like galactic ice in general! Strong ice with a rez cost of 3 or 0 is not good.)

The flip side, though, is that, if Study Guide came out late, it was too slow to level up, and even if it came out early, it could be stopped by medium-strength code gates, because it would be too expensive to level up immediately.

The other problem I noticed is that one barrier breaker and one code gate breaker meant that sometimes it took a while to get my full suite out. Test Run helped a lot, but it wasn’t quite enough.

So I decided to attack both problems: I ended up including both code gate breakers, dropping one Clone Chip to make room. That way, I had a pretty good chance of getting a sentry breaker and a code gate breaker out naturally (especially given the amount of draw I had), and two Test Runs meant that having only one barrier breaker was fine.

 

Changes since version n:

  • -1 Clone Chip
  • +1 Study Guide

 

The full deck:

Nasir (45 cards)

Nasir Meidan: Cyber Explorer

Event (9)

  • 1 Diesel
  • 2 Net Celebrity
  • 2 Quality Time
  • 2 Sure Gamble
  • 2 Test Run

Hardware (12)

  • 2 Clone Chip
  • 3 Cyberfeeder * * *
  • 3 Dyson Mem Chip
  • 2 Plascrete Carapace
  • 2 The Toolbox

Resource (13)

  • 2 Armitage Codebusting
  • 3 Order of Sol
  • 3 Personal Workshop
  • 3 Underworld Contact
  • 2 Xanadu ** **

Icebreaker (7)

  • 1 Battering Ram
  • 1 Crypsis
  • 1 Deus X
  • 1 Femme Fatale *
  • 1 Garrote ***
  • 1 Gordian Blade
  • 1 Study Guide

Program (4)

  • 1 Cloak
  • 2 Parasite ** **
  • 1 Paricia

 

So that’s what I brought to Regionals. I figured Nasir is weird enough that there would be matchups where it just wouldn’t work, so I expected my Industrial Genomics deck (evolved from this version, I’ll blog about that next) to be the workhorse. But I’d seen enough at work to make me believe that this deck wasn’t awful, either, so maybe the two decks would combine to go 50-50?

I was a lot more optimistic after Nasir won during my first two games as runner! But then I dropped the other five; fortunately, I did go 5-2 with the IG deck, so I ended up with 50%, but yeah, Nasir is vulnerable. In particular, at work, we’re playing a lot of power corp decks right now (well, I’m not, but my coworkers are!), which Nasir can reflect back and amplify; but against NBN or Jinteki decks with tags and weak ice, he has a lot more problems.

 

So if I want to be serious with this deck, I’ll need to adapt to that. But there were also some situations where a bad draw led to problems that had nothing to d I needed to be a little lucky with the draw. I need to get my Personal Workshop quickly: I’d assumed that three of those plus one Diesel and two Quality Time was good enough, but I ran into situations where even that isn’t enough. Which is fine, you can’t plan for everything: but if Quality Time doesn’t get me my Personal Workshop on the first turn then I end up with a fistful of cards and only two credits, and that is super hard to recover from. So I think I want to replace at least one Quality Time with Diesel, probably both.

The other issue is money. Not that money was exactly bad in the deck, but I’ve never discarded as many Sure Gambles in any other deck: I just don’t normally have 5 credits lying around, or for that matter have any real need for 9! Whereas there were several situations where Armitage Codebusting was exactly what I wanted, giving me access to just a few more credits at key moments. So I’d definitely want to trade one Sure Gamble for a third Armitage; maybe I’d keep around the other Sure Gamble, maybe I’d find another money card to trade it for, or maybe I’d see if I can trade it for something that can protect me against tags or damage.

 

That’s all hypothetical right now: Regionals are over, it’s time to experiment. But I like this deck a lot, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I decided to return to it later…

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VGHVI Minecraft: April 30, 2015

May 16 2015

Pictures from the April Minecraft session. First, some wandering around; some of these were actually oddities Miranda noticed and showed me:

A random sunset picture

A random sunset picture

A water glitch

A water glitch

A strange strip of snow

A strange strip of snow

A decently large floating island

A decently large floating island

Turns out that there were lots of animals on top of the floating island

Turns out that there were lots of animals on top of the floating island

Lava in a grotto

Lava in a grotto

Miranda found a desert village, and decided to work on it:

The desert village

The desert village

Another view

Another view

A ring of lights at night

A ring of lights at night

Meanwhile, Patrick decided to extend the fort he’d built the previous month:

A bridge crossing the water, and walls on the other side

A bridge crossing the water, and walls on the other side

House number one

House number one

Working on house number two

Working on house number two

I wandered around nearby, and found this strangely round large cave opening

I wandered around nearby, and found this strangely round large cave opening

Then I went back to Miranda’s village; there was one villager who was very persistent about walking in a circle.

A villager walking in a circle

A villager walking in a circle

He's still at it

He’s still at it

Other villagers have gathered to watch him

Other villagers have gathered to watch him

Here's the whole village at daytime

Here’s the whole village at daytime

A sudden desert/grass boundary nearby

A sudden desert/grass boundary nearby

Dan, as he has been for over a year now, is continuing to build a path in a line; he hit a mountain at about this point and started digging through it.

Dan digging through a mountain

Dan digging through a mountain

And then Miranda decided to join forces with Patrick.

Patrick had built a third house

Patrick had built a third house

Miranda building a dock

Miranda building a dock

Making one of the house entrances look nice

Making one of the house entrances look nice

One response so far

Valencia, v. 3

May 09 2015

The second version of my Valencia deck actually ended up doing a lot worse than the first version. I’m not entirely sure why: the reasoning behind most of the additions seemed sound, so my current guess is that I got a little luck with the earlier version. It’s always been a slow deck; sometimes I can get away with that, sometimes I can’t, and recently “can’t” has happened a lot. And it’s not that the new cards didn’t come up: actually, I got pretty lucky with Paige and Symmetrical Visage coming up early, so that should have helped my draw, but either my analysis is wrong or it didn’t help enough.

So I went to speed it up. I noticed that I was spending too much time on Day Job, so I got rid of one of those (my version 0 of the deck, which I don’t have a record of, actually only contained two copies, probably adding a third was a mistake) and put back in one copy of Dirty Laundry. I also got rid of the two copies of Clot that I’d added: they did help me in one game, but only because I wasn’t finding my breakers, so I figured I should just thin out my deck to make it easier to get the breakers. That still left me with 57 cards, so I started getting rid of more events: my second copy of Forked (cutlery has served me well, but I only had one copy of the other two), my Frame Job (I’ve got enough sources of bad publicity), one copy of Deja Vu, and one copy of I’ve Had Worse.

 

That last one may have been a mistake: I went 2-3 with the deck today, and two of the losses were flatlines. I think I’m not entirely ready to give up on the deck: I’m going to spend the next couple of weeks seeing how I like my Nasir deck but with Study Guide swapped in, but it still feels like I should try to get the deck down to 50 cards.

I’m actually a little tempted to give up on Rachel Beckman (though it is amusing to see my coworkers all playing her now); I’d have to think about what I’d do with the extra influence. (Maybe upgrade ZU.13 to Gordian Blade and add a second Clone Chip? Now that I think of it, Clone Chip works better with bad pub than Deja Vu does, and I don’t have enough viruses that the “two virus” ability matters.) I might add back the third I’ve Had Worse; maybe get rid of one copy of Vigil, too, and swap a second Day Job for Dirty Laundry, or even just get rid of Day Job entirely? (Kati Jones is coming up enough that my econ is okay, especially with Symmetrical Visage helping.) I think the quantity of icebreakers is about right (it feels a little low, but I want to solve that by making the deck more efficient), and the non-icebreaker programs I have all frequently help me win games, so I think they’re pulling their weight now that Clot is gone.

 

Anyways, here are the changes:

  • -1 Deja Vu
  • -1 Forked
  • -1 Frame Job
  • -1 I’ve Had Worse
  • -1 Day Job
  • -2 Clot
  • +1 Dirty Laundry

 

And here’s the full deck:

Valencia (53 cards)

Valencia Estevez: The Angel of Cayambe

Event (15)

  • 2 Day Job
  • 1 Deja Vu
  • 1 Dirty Laundry
  • 1 Forked
  • 3 Itinerant Protesters
  • 2 I’ve Had Worse
  • 1 Knifed
  • 1 Spooned
  • 3 Sure Gamble

Hardware (8)

  • 1 Clone Chip **
  • 2 Cyberfeeder
  • 2 MemStrips
  • 3 Vigil

Resource (16)

  • 3 Investigative Journalism
  • 2 Kati Jones
  • 3 Paige Piper
  • 2 Personal Workshop **** ****
  • 3 Rachel Beckman * * *
  • 3 Symmetrical Visage

Icebreaker (8)

  • 1 Cerberus “Cuj.0″ H3
  • 2 Corroder
  • 2 Eater
  • 1 Mimic
  • 1 Yog.0
  • 1 ZU.13 Key Master **

Program (6)

  • 2 Datasucker
  • 2 Medium
  • 2 Parasite

One response so far

Nasir, version n

May 02 2015

I’m planning to focus on new decks here, but I enjoyed my Nasir deck enough that I still haven’t taken it apart. So here it is, as of the last version I played with it:

Nasir (45 cards)

Nasir Meidan: Cyber Explorer

Event (9)

  • 1 Diesel
  • 2 Net Celebrity
  • 2 Quality Time
  • 2 Sure Gamble
  • 2 Test Run

Hardware (13)

  • 3 Clone Chip
  • 3 Cyberfeeder * * *
  • 3 Dyson Mem Chip
  • 2 Plascrete Carapace
  • 2 The Toolbox

Resource (13)

  • 2 Armitage Codebusting
  • 3 Order of Sol
  • 3 Personal Workshop
  • 3 Underworld Contact
  • 2 Xanadu ** **

Icebreaker (6)

  • 1 Battering Ram
  • 1 Crypsis
  • 1 Deus X
  • 1 Femme Fatale *
  • 1 Garrote ***
  • 1 Gordian Blade

Program (4)

  • 1 Cloak
  • 2 Parasite ** **
  • 1 Paricia

 

I’m a very traditional Netrunner player: honestly, my taste in icebreakers hasn’t really evolved since the core set. So I’m sure there are other people out there with Nasir decks that use all sorts of specialized icebreakers in fascinating ways. But I’m doing things in a much more straightforward way: I want to use Nasir’s powers to get out a strong suite of standard icebreakers, and I want enough recurring credits that I’ll actually be able to use those icebreakers even after potentially losing a bunch of money.

The key card here is Personal Workshop, of course: that gives me something useful to do with the credits that I would lose when encountering newly rezzed ice. In fact, those credits turned out to work so well that I bumped up the cost of programs (adding Garrote in particular, though I’m not 100% convinced that was a good idea): I’ve never gotten out my Toolbox so smoothly in any other deck. I’ll mulligan if I don’t have either a Personal Workshop or Diesel / Quality Time.

Order of Sol was the most surprisingly useful card in this deck: I go broke in this deck all the time, so that helps me bounce back. In fact, I ended up frequently trying to go broke on the corp turn as well, so so I could get twice as many credits: if I had more than a credit or two in my pool, that’s not worth it, but if I end my turn with a single credit, then I can spend it on the corp turn to take a counter off of something in Personal Workshop, and that’s free because Order of Sol replenishes it immediately.

I ended up using Dyson Mem Chip as my non-console memory: they’re cheap enough in this deck, and there are a decent range of corp decks where the link is useful. And that in turn suggested that I should use Underworld Contact as a source of money: Nasir starts with one link, so it triggers when I either have my console or a single mem chip.

Xanadu obviously synergizes with Nasir.

In earlier iterations, I had Self-Modifying Code in here as well, but I was had a small enough stash of money most of the time (and expensive enough programs!) that the two credit cost made a difference. So I decided to focus on card draw plus Test Run to get cards out of my deck, and Clone Chip to resurrect them from the trash if they were destroyed or if I drew too much. Having only one of each icebreaker is potentially dangerous, but in practice that’s been okay, and Crypsis / Femme Fatale / Deus X give me a bit of wiggle room as well.

Battering Ram is, obviously, not a very popular icebreaker; the reason why it’s here (other than the fact that it’s in faction) is that you can bump the strength before losing the credits. You can do that with Gordian Blade, too: otherwise, I’d be tempted to put in Torch.

And, obviously, there are tons of recurring credits. Mostly for icebreaker use, to give me a prayer of making it through even after losing lots of credits, but Net Celebrity can be used for anything (in particular, for Personal Workshop) and Paricia increases the chance that I’ll be able to trash stuff at the end of the run.

Parasite has an extra non-obvious use in this deck: the worst case for Nasir is hitting strength 0 ice, but if I’ve got a Parasite in the trash and a Clone Chip on the board (or on my Personal Workshop), then I can destroy a Popup Window before encountering it, which means that I don’t lose my credits.

 

This is probably the tightest deck I’ve ever built: I can point at basically every card in the deck and say “there’s a really good reason why this card belongs in this specific deck”, and it’s small enough and has enough draw that I actually get to play those cards. And it did reasonably well: it’s not a top-tier tournament deck, but none of my decks are ever top-tier tournament decks, I’m not good enough at building them! The main tournament downside is that it’s mentally absolutely exhausting to play: you have to do so many more calculations when playing this deck than when playing other decks. I did contest math when I was growing up, and playing a Netrunner tournament with this deck actually tires out my brain more than math contests did.

I’m actually thinking of resurrecting it: my Valencia deck has not been doing so well recently, so I’m thinking I’ll bring this deck to regionals, partly because I enjoy it, partly because it’s probably slightly better than my Valencia deck, and partly because, as one of the weaker players at regionals, I figure doing a weird deck is good, because it will increase the variance. (Whereas good players want to shrink the variance of their decks.) I’m planning to swap in Study Guide as the code gate breaker: I’ll gradually be able to bump up the strength using spare recurring credits (icebreaker-specific ones work fine there, I don’t need generic ones), so I’m hoping that, a few turns after it goes down, it will end up being stronger than Torch with me having spent many fewer credits that wouldn’t otherwise have been wasted in the process.

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Valencia, v. 2

Apr 28 2015

Here’s the current version of my Valencia deck, after I took the prior iteration to a tournament.

The deck did well at that tournament, so I didn’t want to change it too much, I just wanted to thin it down a bit. I decided it probably had enough economy, so I got rid of the two Dirty Laundries; and despite all the bad pub I get, Raymond Flint wasn’t even normally giving me as many as 2 HQ accesses on average, which didn’t seem worth it.

So that brought the deck down to 50 cards, yay! But then I took a look at The Valley. I’m vulnerable to fast advance and I’ve got extra virus-specific memory and extra program install power from Personal Workshop, so I threw in a couple of copies of The Clot.

And then I looked at Paige Piper: if I play her then I can throw away extra copies of Rachel Beckman, Personal Workshop, Katie Jones, Corroder, Eater, Vigil, so she should thin out my deck? (And if I’m going to throw in one copy, there’s no reason not to throw in three.) Similarly, I’m drawing a lot with this deck and clicking for credits sometimes, so Symmetrical Visage should pay for itself in terms of efficiency, so another three copies of that (which Paige should get rid of 1-2 copies of); and also probably a third copy of I’ve Had Worse will actually make my deck less dense as well? (Or at worst break-even: one click to draw it, one click to earn a credit, one click to play it, resulting in three cards.)

I’m not sure I disagree with that analysis; but the flip side is that it leaves me with a 59-card deck, which is ridiculous. So either that analysis is wrong or it’s right but I need to take advantage of those increased efficiency cards and use that to get rid of other cards, to let my deck play smaller than it is. (Because having only 6 out of 59 cards being non-Eater icebreakers, two of which depend on also getting Datasucker installed, does not feel good!)

 

The changes:

  • -2 Raymond Flint
  • -2 Dirty Laundry
  • +3 Paige Piper
  • +3 Symmetrical Visage
  • +2 Clot
  • +1 I’ve Had Worse

 

And the result:

Valencia (59 cards)

Valencia Estevez: The Angel of Cayambe

Event (19)

  • 3 Day Job
  • 2 Deja Vu
  • 2 Forked
  • 1 Frame Job
  • 3 Itinerant Protesters
  • 3 I’ve Had Worse
  • 1 Knifed
  • 1 Spooned
  • 3 Sure Gamble

Hardware (8)

  • 1 Clone Chip **
  • 2 Cyberfeeder
  • 2 MemStrips
  • 3 Vigil

Resource (16)

  • 3 Investigative Journalism
  • 2 Kati Jones
  • 3 Paige Piper
  • 2 Personal Workshop **** ****
  • 3 Rachel Beckman * * *
  • 3 Symmetrical Visage

Icebreaker (8)

  • 1 Cerberus “Cuj.0″ H3
  • 2 Corroder
  • 2 Eater
  • 1 Mimic
  • 1 Yog.0
  • 1 ZU.13 Key Master **

Program (8)

  • 2 Clot
  • 2 Datasucker
  • 2 Medium
  • 2 Parasite

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Galactic Ice deck, final version

Apr 26 2015

Backfilling my Netrunner decks, here’s the final version of my prior corp deck, where I tried out the galactic ice from the most recent big box:

galactic (49 cards)

Weyland Consortium: Because We Built It

Agenda (10)

  • 2 Firmware Updates
  • 2 Government Contracts
  • 3 NAPD Contract
  • 3 Project Atlas

Asset (6)

  • 1 Edge of World **
  • 3 Jackson Howard * * *
  • 2 Melange Mining Corp

Upgrade (1)

  • 1 Cyberdex Virus Suite

Operation (14)

  • 2 Beanstalk Royalties
  • 3 Hedge Fund
  • 3 Punitive Counterstrike
  • 2 Restructure
  • 1 Subliminal Messaging
  • 3 Trick of Light *** *** ***

Barrier (6)

  • 3 Asteroid Belt
  • 3 Ice Wall

Code Gate (5)

  • 1 Lotus Field *
  • 1 Quandary
  • 3 Wormhole

Sentry (5)

  • 2 Archer
  • 3 Nebula

ICE (2)

  • 2 Orion

I’d tried out Because We Built It when the card first appeared, and it had failed miserably; it seemed like time to try it again, and this version is playable but not great. (It went 1-3 in the last tournament I played in, and that’s not at all surprising.) It’s slow; once it really gets going, the servers are strong, but it frequently doesn’t last that long, and the first few turns in particular can be brutal. Sometimes the Punitive Counterstrikes land; there’s also a good amount of program destruction possibilities, and Firmware Updates helps me feed the Archers. (Actually, playing the deck has gotten me perfectly happy sacrificing a two-point agenda to feed an Archer in the right situation.)

In previous iterations, I had some of the assets/upgrades that help with advanceable ice; Satellite Grid really wasn’t worth it, and while Constellation Protocol certainly had its moments, I ultimately decided that I needed money more. (If one of my coworkers didn’t have such a virus-heavy deck, maybe I would have left in one Constellation Protocol and ditched Cyberdex?)

I am a big fan of Ice Wall: it gives you a bit of defense in your first few turns while advancing the galactic ice. And Trick of Light is an absolute key card in this deck: I usually hold off on using it until I’ve got an agenda scored, but once I’ve got two points, using one to score a 3/2 agenda out of hand and then using two to score an installed but unadvanced 5/3 agenda is great.

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