Runner-up in the Android: Netrunner Season 2 Tournament

After the Season 2 Game Night Kits were announced, the local game shop around me was gracious enough to order a few kits; for our local game nights, and to run a local tournament with. After a bit of a wait, the Game Night Kits arrived, and a date was set for the tournament: August 31st.

The shop is Redcap’s Corner in Philly, which was also the place for one of the Regionals I’ve attended a couple months ago. I’ve been looking forward to this tournament, mostly because of the prizes from the Game Night Kit. The alternate art Kate looks awesome, as does the alternate art Scorched Earth. The art for the playmat was also very nice looking.

During the time between the last Regional Tournament I’ve attended til now, I’ve been messing around with all the different Identities. Mostly with Jinteki and Noise. I felt comfortable with playing with both of these decks, but was a bit worried about how much time they would take up. So I decided to drop Noise for a faster deck: Criminal. Here are the decks I’ve came up with.

Identity:
Gabriel Santiago: Consummate Professional (Core)

med_gabriel-santiago-core

Total Cards: (45)

Event (22)

  • Account Siphon (Core #18) x1
  • Forged Activation Orders (Core #20) x2
  • Easy Mark (Core #19) x2
  • Special Order (Core #22) x2
  • Inside Job (Core #21) x3
  • Emergency Shutdown (Cyber Exodus #43) x3
  • Scavenge (Creation and Control #34) x1 [][]
  • The Maker’s Eye (Core #36) x1 [][]
  • Deja Vu (Core #2) x1 [][]
  • Dirty Laundry (Creation and Control #52) x1
  • Kraken (Humanity’s Shadow #90) x2
  • Sure Gamble (Core #50) x3

Hardware (6)

  • Desperado (Core #24) x3
  • HQ Interface (Humanity’s Shadow #85) x2
  • Plascrete Carapace (What Lies Ahead #9) x1

Program (15)

  • Sneakdoor Beta (Core #28) x2
  • Faerie (Future Proof #104) x2
  • Femme Fatale (Core #26) x3
  • Corroder (Core #7) x1 []
  • Yog.0 (Core #14) x1 []
  • Datasucker (Core #8) x2 []
  • Parasite (Core #12) x2 [][]
  • Crypsis (Core #51) x2

Resource (2)

  • Compromised Employee (Trace Amount #25) x2

Influence Values Totals (15)

  • Anarch: 11
  • Shaper: 4

Strategy:

I was thinking of going with Andromeda again, with her 9 card starting hand to have an early economy going. What I’ve noticed with a lot of Andromeda players (myself included) is that they tend to give the corp a run free first turn. We’re so worried about discarding good cards that we will spend all four clicks on using four cards instead of running.

So I opted to go with Gabriel Santiago, to put early and steady pressure on the corp throughout the game. Who needs economy cards when you can earn up to 3 credits with one click by running on HQ? My deck is very Event heavy with a small rig. I run early, and I run often.

Identity:
Jinteki: Personal Evolution (Core)

med_jinteki-core

Total Cards: (54)

Agenda (10)

  • Braintrust (What Lies Ahead #14) x3
  • Nisei MK II (Core #68) x2
  • Fetal AI (Trace Amount #32) x3
  • Executive Retreat (Trace Amount #39) x2

Asset (21)

  • Zaibatsu Loyalty (Core #71) x2
  • Snare! (Core #70) x3
  • Project Junebug (Core #69) x3
  • Ronin (Future Proof #112) x3
  • Cerebral Overwriter (Creation and Control #9) x2 [][]
  • Encryption Protocol (Trace Amount #29) x2 []
  • PAD Campaign (Core #109) x2
  • Server Diagnostics (Creation and Control #25) x2
  • Melange Mining Corp (Core #108) x2

ICE (11)

  • Data Mine (Core #76) x2
  • Chum (Core #75) x2
  • Neural Katana (Core #77) x3
  • Matrix Analyzer (Core #89) x2 [][]
  • Enigma (Core #111) x1
  • Bastion (Creation and Control #26) x1

Operation (11)

  • Neural EMP (Core #72) x1
  • Trick of Light (Trace Amount #33) x3
  • Shipment from Mirrormorph (Core #60) x1 [][]
  • Shipment from Kaguya (Core #100) x3 []
  • Hedge Fund (Core #110) x3

Upgrade (1)

  • Hokusai Grid (Humanity’s Shadow #95) x1

Total Agenda Points: 22

Influence Values Totals (15)

  • Haas-Bioroid: 8
  • NBN: 4
  • The Weyland Consortium: 3

Strategy:

My “Funteki” deck is what I put together because I was tired of playing Haas Bioroid all throughout the Regional Tournaments. When the first big box expansion came out, it was even more HB. The more I played with Jinteki, the more fun I had, and the more creative I’ve gotten with card combos. There were so many cards I wanted to use, that I had to bump up my deck size to 54 to try to fit them all in. As a result, I also had to bump up the number of Agenda Points to 22.

My Jinteki deck is very asset heavy, and runs only a few pieces of ICE. I pretty much sit back and wait for the runner to make mistakes. I use the Matrix Analyzers to advance traps/agendas on the runner’s turn, and makes the runner second guess every little thing I do. The Zaibatsu Loyalty is there for Infiltration, which can mess with my traps.

Deck Created with CardGameDB.com

GAD-layout

The tournament is supposed to start at 12pm, so I get there a bit early to fill out my decklist, and chat with some of the players. I meet a really cool guy from Ohio (I think) named Mike, who happens to be in the area. This is his first tournament, but he plays quite a bit on OCTGN. We also talk about how power Jackson Howard is going to be when the next Data Pack is released.

We play a warm-up game while waiting for the start time. I play my Criminal deck against his Haas Bioroid deck. Good thing we played too, since it has been awhile since I’ve played with criminal, and was forgetting stuff like collecting credits on successful runs. He ends up beating me before it was time to start the tournament.

There are only 10 participants in this tournament. A low turnout most likely due to the fact that this was during Labor Day weekend. Even a few of our local guys wouldn’t be able to make it. Their will be 4 rounds of matches, then we will cut to the top two players. We’re using the new tournament scoring rules.

For the Prizes:

  • 1st Place – Bragging Rights
  • Top 2 Places – Playmat
  • Top 4 Places – Full Bleed alternative art Kate “Mac” McCaffrey
  • All Participants – A set of 3x Full Bleed alternative art Scorched Earth

That is awesome! I came into today thinking that only top 2 was going to get the alternative art Kate, so I was glad that my chances of obtaining one has increased. The fact that all participants will receive a full set of alternative art Scorched Earth was also very cool. Decklists were collected, pairings were made, and everyone head to their tables.

Round 1:

My first opponent is one of the local guys whom I’ve played against many times before. He always have some interesting decks, and I can never know what to expect. We flip to see who gets to play what first, and in my first match, I will be playing my “Funteki” deck. He will be playing as Exile: Streethawk.

I draw my starting hand of 5 and choose to mulligan. I shuffle and re-draw, not much better. It was something like three assets, one ICE, and a Trick of Light. I think I drew an operation, and installed the three assets on my opening turn, leaving all centrals open. A huge mistake on my part, since on his turn, he scored two quick agendas from R&D. Doh! I don’t remember much else, and he was able to score another agenda. Total defeat 0 – 7.

med_ash-2x3zb9cy-what-lies-ahead

Now it is time for my Gabriel deck against his NBN: Making News deck. He was doing some cool tricks with his deck. He had a card down in a server with two upgrades. I run on the server, and he rezzes ?Ash 2X3ZB9CY, so I spend my 3 credits to trash it. I have to run the server again, and this time he rezzes the other upgrade card, Red Herrings, which forces me to pay 5 credits as an addition cost to steal the agenda… which I didn’t have. He was able to score the agenda on his next turn.

This game was much closer, but he still ended up winning 5 – 7. I’m off to a horrible start, and after the first round, I’m at 0 Match Points. Maybe “Funteki” was a bad idea, and I should have gone with Noise and Haas Bioroid?

Round 2:

My second opponent is another one of our local players. Another good player, but one advantage I have over him is the fact that he has been out of the game recently due to work. So he is going to be a bit rusty getting back into the game. He plays as the corp first, and is using Weyland Consortium: Building a Better World.

He draws his 5 cards, and mulligans. On his turn, he ICE up HQ and R&D, then gains some credits. I run on both servers to get him to rez his ICE, then gain some credits. He scores a Hostile Takeover on his next turn. I score an agenda out of R&D next turn and gain some credits. He gains some credits and puts an ICE down on HQ. Next turn I run on HQ and he forfeits his agenda to rez an Archer. Ouch! Fortunately I didn’t lose much. Next turn gains some more credits. On my next turn, I install Sneakdoor Beta, and run his HQ three times. Three agendas for the win, 7 – 0.

med_sneakdoor-beta-core

The second game starts, and he is playing The Professor: Keeper of Knowledge. I play my Jinteki deck much better this time around. I ICE up my central servers and start playing the “Which is an asset/agenda/trap?” game. He plays very well, and very safe, but when you play too cautiously against Jinteki, then Jinteki can score agendas. He was too worried about what ICE I was running, and was trying to get out a full rig before running. By then, it was too late, and I was able to score 7 agenda points before he did, 7 – 4.

I’m feeling a whole lot better now. After the first round, I was doubting my Jinteki deck, but now I’m getting back into the groove of playing it again. I am now at 4 Match Points.

Round 3:

My opponent this time is one of the newer guys to show up to our local Netrunner Game Nights. He is also really good at the game. This is also his first tournament, so he isn’t used to the faster pace of the tournament games, so due to that, a few of his games went to time.

He chooses to play corp first, and is playing as Haas Bioroid: Engineering the Future. I don’t remember much of this match except that it was a pretty long game that I ended up winning. This wasn’t looking good since my Jinteki games are usually pretty long too.

med_trick-of-light-trace-amount

I’m sorry but I don’t remember much from this game either except that he was playing as Rielle “Kit” Peddler: Transhuman. I was able to score an Executive Retreat, which is a 3 point agenda using Trick of Lights, and he was able to steal a 2 point agenda after playing Indexing. Unfortunately, time was called, and the game resulted in a tie. So we both get a Match Point for that game.

I am now sitting at 7 Match Points going into the last round of the tournament. The current 1st place person is at 12, and 2nd place is at 8 points. I’m currently tied for 3rd. So that means I’ll be facing the person I’m tied with.

Round 4:

My opponent this time is actually one of the owners of the game shop, and I’ve played him a few times before. He runs some pretty unique decks, and always has a few unexpected tricks up his sleeves. Looks like this will be a mirror match. He’s playing Jinteki and Gabriel. This is going to be fun.

He plays as Jinteki first. It was a pretty long game, and he is running Scorched Earth in his deck. I also found out the hard way, that he is running an Archer in his deck. I also had the pleasure of seeing all three of his Snares! It was very back and forth, and he did enough damage to me that I drew up my entire deck, and was down to 3 cards left in hand, and my only ICE breaker on the table was a YOG.0.

I had an Inside Job, Deja Vu, and Dirty Laundry in hand. I only needed 2 more agenda points to win, but as you can see, in a very difficult position. He two remote servers with a card in each, both protected by ICE I couldn’t break. They have been sitting there for awhile so I figured they were just assets. I figured I’ll do an Inside Job at HQ, and if I was unsuccessful, I would Deja Vu the Inside Job back into my hand to run one of the remotes. Fortunately, I pulled an agenda from his hand for the win.

There was now about 20 minutes left to play our next match. I was able to score a Braintrust, and was able to get him low with cards in hand, a few times, but never had a Ronin or Neural EMP ready in time. I was finally able to flat-line him though, when he was hit with a Neural Katana, and accessed a Fetal A.I.

I am now sitting at 11 Match Points, hoping whoever was in first place, won both of his matches. As it so happens, he did! I get bumped up to 2nd place, and will be playing in the final round.

Final Round:

Since 1st and 2nd place prizes were the same, there wasn’t much reason to play except for bragging rights, but we wanted to play. My opponent is Mike, whom I have met earlier in the day, and was playing a warm-up match with, and beat me. I needed to get my revenge. Plus everyone was watching. There were a few players who wanted to see how my “Funteki” plays.

Since we’re playing with the new tournament rules, which meant I needed to win two matches. It didn’t matter if I won 7-0 in the first match, if in the 2nd match he won 6-7, we would still have to play a 3rd match to determine the winner. I actually like this ruling better. With the older ruling, whoever won the first match could just rush out the agenda points they needed to win, and would play differently then if they had to win with 7 points.

As it so happens, in the first match, I was able to beat his Haas Bioroid deck, 7-0. So if it was the old rulings, in the 2nd match, if I had scored 1 agenda point, I would have won the whole round. I don’t like that. That would force me to play very differently, just to score one agenda. So even though it would have given me first place, I’m glad that FFG changed their tournament rules.

med_cerebral-overwriter-creation-and-control

Although he was having some difficulty, he was able to beat my Jinteki deck with his Andromeda deck to force a 3rd match. I gave him the choice of what to run the next match since I didn’t care. He didn’t want to face my Jinteki again, but at the same time, he had already lost to my Gabriel deck, so he didn’t know what to choose either. He ended up picking to run again as Andromeda.

This was another close game that went back and forth, that came down very close at the end. I had a Braintrust and Trick of Light in my hand, and had a Cerebral Overwriter installed with two advancements on it. On my next turn, I would be able to install my Braintrust, advance it once, then use Trick of Light to bring two advancement tokens over to it to score the agenda. Unfortunately, he ran at HQ and was able to pull the agenda from my hand to win.

That was a great win for him, and I was happy with the way my decks played. I was able to talk to Mike for a few minutes after the tournament was over, and was able to get a few tips to what to change in my Jinteki deck. I think I will be tweaking my Jinteki deck a bit more. Maybe adding another 2 point agenda in order to put in 4 more cards into the deck. Also since I have a new alternative art Kate card, time for me to build a new Shaper deck.

This was a great tournament, and I had a ton of fun, and met some cool cool guys. Special thanks to folks at Redcap’s Corner for running this tournament, and making all this possible. Thanks for reading, and I will see you next time!


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