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Android Netrunner - LCG


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So has anyone been playing the recently released Fantasy Flight reboot of Netrunner?

The rules remain largely unchanged from the Richard Garfield original and FFG have done a fantastic job of updating the game in my opinion.

For people that haven't heard of Netrunner before its a Cyberpunk card game that is largely inspired by William Gibsons Neuromancer. The core idea being that 1 person plays as a Corporation and the other player is the Runner (hacker).

The Corp can win by scoring 7 Agenda points or flatlining the Runner. The Runner wins by stealing 7 points worth of Agendas from the Corp. The game is very interesting in that it plays asymmetrically meaning that the rulesets and card layouts are different for both players. Unlike games such as MTG it also focuses on and rewards brave bluffing and double bluffing as the Corp plays many of its cards face down.

Games tend to be very tense and can provide some moments of absolute joy! Winning a game from behind thanks to a great bluff is one of the best feelings you can get in any sort of gaming!

Below is a link to the rule book if anyone wants to read some more about the game.

http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/ffg_content/android-netrunner/support/android-netrunner-core-rules.pdf

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This website has done a good job of summing up the core rules changes

http://teamcovenant....-new-whats-not/

Rezzed Cards

First up, a bookkeeping rule. Used to be if you exposed a Corp card it stayed exposed. You’d have to come up with a counter system to indicate which face up cards were rezzed and which weren’t. No longer. Face up, it’s rezzed. Face down, derezzed. Truth tell I always played like this anyway. It adds an extra memory element to exposing cards that I liked.

Which probably makes this change a wash in terms of playtime. Less fiddling with counters, more analysis paralysis, or AP as I prefer to say. Next.

Traces

Huge change here. Traces in the days of old were a blind bid, based on the trace value of the Corp card that initiated the action versus any base link the Runner managed to get into play. The bid was limited by the trace value, so the Runner knew what the Corp was allowed to spend at the upper limit. The Runner used a base link card to get an initial link value and then pumped it from there with his revealed bid.

That’s all well and good in theory. But in practice the Runner never bothered with base links, and just took the effects of the trace. If the Corp player even bothered to put Ice that traced in his deck. Most trace effects were relatively weak, and if it happened in the course of a run the Runner, if he was smart, left an action between himself and the Corp to deal with any ill effects. Like removing that tag he just got for example.

So, interesting on the surface. Useless when it came down to brass tacks.

A:N has done away with the blind bid, and how link value works in the first place. Now Runners get a built in link value which can be boosted by cards in game. The Corp’s trace value is their starting point, and they can spend AS MANY credits as they want to try and catch the Runner. The onus is then on the Runner, who has to decide if he wants to beat the Corp’s open bid, or just take the consequences.

I like this change. While blind bids are flavorful from a certain point of view, if traces were a big part of the deck’s strategy (admittedly, this was rare) it could bog a game down while the two players sized each other up.

Purging Viruses

Gone are the days where you could lose actions from successive turns. Now you only lose actions from the current turn, if able. Simple, elegant change. Which has the side effect of boosting viruses. I lose a whole turn as Corp to get rid of these quickly accumulating counters? Guh.

Bad Publicity

This is the largest mechanical change to the base rules, and it involves a mechanic from the original game’s sole full scale expansion. I was psyched to see Bad Publicity mentioned on early leaked cards, but little did I know that it would be even better than the original implementation.

Bad Publicity used to be an alternate win condition. Meant to balance out the Corp’s additional path to victory, the tag n’ bag, as decking the Corp was rarely an option. Get enough Bad Publicity points and outright lose the game. Cool enough to try and build a deck around it, but ultimately it still involved making runs and breaking subroutines. Meh.

Now? Now for every point of Bad Publicity the Corp has, the Runner gets a free credit at the start of EVERY run. Wowzors.

None of the changes that have been made really alter the game in a negative way in my opinion although I was never a massive player of the original as I used to play A LOT of MTG.

I think the main change is that its now an LCG rather than CCG. The 4 Corps and 3 Runner factions have very distinct flavours and have been designed in such a way that they are much more focused and themed. Currently this feels a little limiting due to the small card pool, but there are expansions coming which will flesh out the card selection and really open up the deck building options.

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Excellent game. I've got it and haven't played it as much as i would like yet as normally on games nights there's more than 2 people, but i've played it enough to see all the wonderful bluffing and traps that make up the corp side of the game. Looking forward to getting my hands on the data packs and doing a bit of deck building now. Not to build anything competitive though, my copy is just for playing with friends so I want a deck for each faction and for them all to be reasonably well balanced with one another.

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I picked this up when it came out, and get destroyed every time. It's really good fun, though. I could do with reading up on how to play it properly though.

Im loving it but definitely still finding it tough to work out good strategies and the best way to spend my clicks each turn. I guess because I'm so used to MTG learning a radically different game like this is taking some practise.

What decks are people tending to use? And are you deck building or leaving them as they come?

We've just started to modify the decks using the influence limit. Right now im liking the NBN deck because of its tracing and tagging ability combined with scorched earth from the Weyland deck and some snares from the Jinteki deck. This means I've been winning most of my Corp games by flatlining the Runner, im guessing this will change as they release more diverse Agendas.

I've not played Runner as much as Corp so I'm still not really sure about the pros and cons of each faction but I'm liking a lot of cards in the Criminal deck, stuff like Sneakdoor Beta and Inside Job together can be an amazing combo.

One of the things I'm struggling with the most overall is the economy, credits are vital in this game which is why cards like Armitage Codebusting, Adonis Campaign, Sure Gamble and Mining Corp are so important. Again this comes down to knowing how to spend your clicks each turn, from what I've read a lot of people will frequently use their whole turn just taking credits which seemed a waste to me at first.

Man it's been a while since a game had me as hooked as this!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Me and DOnk played this again last night, and he absolutely leathered me. I played Weyland, then Haas Biodroid and then mixed some Weyland into the Hass Biodroid but he used the runners that use virsus and staved me off long enough to run my R&D for 7 then 9 cards and pull all the needed points. Fucking crazy.

Couple of questions: why are discarded cards put face down in the archive? What purpose does it serve?

Any idea when the expansion is out?

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Couple of questions: why are discarded cards put face down in the archive? What purpose does it serve?

Any idea when the expansion is out?

Cards are put into archives face down if the runner hasn't seen them but face up if they were face up on the table. They could be agendas which the runner can score if they access them so hence the need for secrecy. It could also reveal too much of your strategy if they see it's a trap card I guess. If you pick up too many agendas archives can be a sneaky way of getting one or two out of your hand as sometimes you just don't pick up ice as fast as you want to.

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Me and DOnk played this again last night, and he absolutely leathered me. I played Weyland, then Haas Biodroid and then mixed some Weyland into the Hass Biodroid but he used the runners that use virsus and staved me off long enough to run my R&D for 7 then 9 cards and pull all the needed points. Fucking crazy.

Couple of questions: why are discarded cards put face down in the archive? What purpose does it serve?

Any idea when the expansion is out?

Did you remember to purge the virus counters?

Were you trying to win by agenda scoring or tagging? If you go for tags and like the Weyland deck it would be a good idea to splash in cards like Sea Source (NBN) and Data Raven (NBN) which increase your chance of tagging which will lead you on to using Scorched Earth which is a brutal card. Id also say that Snare (Jinteki) is an essential card for most corp decks right now, if you'd have had x3 Snares in your deck it would have hurt him massively on the R&D draws and even flatlined him in 1 run if he was drawing multiple cards and you got lucky.

The other tip I'd give is to try and be as unpredictable as possible, as the Corp you need to use the fact you're playing cards face down to your advantage. For example yesterday in a game I installed 2 Assets and an Agenda in one turn with no ice protecting any of them, on the runners turn he had no idea what to do or if he should run of any of them, he picked one and it was a Snare after that he left the other 2. Then on my turn I advanced and scored the Agenda which was unprotected. Now clearly this won't work every time especially if the runner has a way of Exposing the cards first, but its about being unpredictable you need to avoid following the same patterns for installing, advancing and scoring.

Although bare in mind that right now I think the Runner is easier to play overall, but that should change with the expansions adding more diversity. The first expansion is due in the next couple of weeks.

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Did you remember to purge the virus counters?

Um. Is this a thing that happens automatically? If so then the virus with a green pot on it is not nearly as good as I thought - I had two of them installed and a successful run on R&D was yielding 5-7 cards off the top.

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  • 3 weeks later...

So Esdevium received the first Data Pack this morning. Should be on the delivery to my LGS tomorrow! Speak to your people! :)

I was in Dark Sphere yesterday, and they're expecting the expansion and a restock of starter sets today. I wonder whether I can convince the wife to give it a try.

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Was finally able to get the first data pack from Travelling Man in York.

Not had chance to play with the cards yet but there are some very nice ones in the first pack. One of the main additions is that each Corp has been given a killer Agenda, they are expensive to score but they all have some very powerful abilities once you have scored them.

Mandatory Upgrades looks immense for HB, 6 to score but an extra click each turn is massive. Braintrust and Project Atlas are interesting because to take maximum advantage from scoring them you need to leave them in play and put additional advancement tokens on them, that will definitely lead to some interesting plays and bluffs.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Second Data pack is apparently out on Monday, and because my local game shop doesn't seem to be very good for anything except Games Workshop products (no, it's not a Games Workshop, smarty pants) I've taken the liberty of ordering it from OG Games.

I've got next to no experience with Card Games of this type, mainly because I never liked the idea of having to buy random booster packs in the hope of getting something half-decent - so this idea of a developing game with set, regular expansions has just completely blown my mind. Because of my complete lack of exposure I have no idea if Netrunner is actually any good or not, but I certainly think it's a lot of fun and the people I tend to play with dig it as well. My only complaint is that playing as the Corp means you struggle to reach out and batter the runner - that said, the runner is well capable of battering himself on ICE walls.

Some games just feel like your ICE is pointless, and the Runner just shreds it up :(

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The 1st data pack and my 2nd base copy arrived at the weekend so I had a lot of fun deck building. Managed to make a complete deck for each faction without the need to pass neutral cards from deck to deck, which was part of the point of getting the 2nd copy really. The 2nd data pack is now in the post on it's way to me too so more deckbuilding fun times would seem to be imminent. I'm not sure I'll play it enough to warrant all this expense, but it's such a good game I'm going to buy up the 1st cycle of data packs and then perhaps just get the inevitable bigger boxed expansions as and when they get released.

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Should be having my first game of this later in the week. The game is at a friends so i don't have access to the cards. Are there any good decklists for the runner that you can make with one base copy? Don't want to spend 30mins building a deck before playing!

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