Category Archives: netrunner


Drive By

At last nights Warlords weekly meet up I got a chance to test drive my first attempt at a Criminal deck. 

I’m an Anarch at heart, I love playing Noise (although the leaked/spoiled Anarch id null from the next data cycle may tempt me away) especially with Faust/David/Street Magic/Wylde Side/Pancakes – which has most people online raging against them (this might be gutted with the first update to the most wanted list due to drop any day now).

So playing a faction I don’t usually play is a big thing.

However I was tempted to come up with this deck after the Run Last Click guys mentioned the Drive By card in the live broadcast they did at the UK Games Expo.

In my hunting online to find out just what the good ice breakers are for Criminal, I stumbled across a card combo that would install Femme Fatale for free! It was out of faction but had to be used a nine cost ice breaker is way way too expensive.

The main thing I wanted to play with in this deck was the Drive By, Gang Sign and Rebirth.

My starting id for this deck is Andromeda giving me an initial massive nine card draw. If that doesn’t give me rebirth, it should allow me to fish for it using some of the card draw or planned assault. 

Once I get rebirth I can then swap to a Criminal id more suitable for the matchup I’m facing.

From what I can tell Criminal is all about the central servers particularly HQ. 

This deck is running a lot of events for me , giving economy, exposing cards, making the hit on HQ more painful for the Corp, and finding cards.

Running one copy of my breakers may seem recless but with the events I can get to them quickly if need be.

Window I added because how many times after losing has the card you really needed been on the bottom of the stack? 

In the game last night I mulliganed, in the second hand I drew I got two sure gambles. A cash rich start. Ben iced up HQ quickly. So a Sneakdoor Beta on an unprotected Archives scored me an agenda. Guess who iced up archives then?

Gang sign scored me an agenda when Ben scored his first agenda. I managed to score a third agenda from HQ. I was sitting on six agenda points while Ben had five. 

My biggest problem was having enough credits to drive my ice breakers in the lay stages of the game. Which slowed down my assault on HQ. 

Ben scored the final agenda he needed to get the win.

I liked the way this deck played. The combo worked to get Femme out for free. Drive By did its job a couple of times. Gang Sign got me an agenda. So the little ‘tricks’ worked. 

We followed up our Netrunner game with Firefly Fluxx which Ben won. 

My final game of the evening was a four player game of Epic. The decks were dealt randomly (in the interests of time), and we played it that you could only attack player to your left, with only the two players doing battle able to play events to influence it, however everyone else could play events when the current player tried to end their turn.

I was the first to be knocked out. However I’m pleased with that, considering the random element to the decks, the cards I had drawn were not bad. I could have been dealt worse cards. In the end Ben emerged triumphant again. A clean sweep for him.

Great evening gaming. But now I have to decide if I play this new Criminal deck at Saturday’s comp at my FLGS or stick to my tried and tested, but more importantly familiar Noise.

Here is my deck…

Drive By Swap
Andromeda (Humanity’s Shadow)
Event (28)

3x Drive By (The Underway)

2x Easy Mark (Core Set)

1x Emergency Shutdown (Cyber Exodus)

1x Express Delivery (Honor and Profit)

2x Infiltration (Core Set)

2x Inside Job (Core Set)

1x Lawyer Up (True Colors)

2x Legwork (Honor and Profit)

1x Lucky Find (Double Time) ••

1x Planned Assault (Honor and Profit)

1x Rebirth (The Liberated Mind) •

2x Satellite Uplink (Trace Amount)

2x Scavenge (Creation and Control) ••••

2x Special Order (Core Set)

2x Sure Gamble (Core Set)

2x Test Run (Cyber Exodus) ••••• •

1x Unscheduled Maintenance (The Spaces Between)
Hardware (6)

1x Desperado (Core Set) ☆

2x Plascrete Carapace (What Lies Ahead)

2x Public Terminal (Honor and Profit)

1x Window (Honor and Profit)
Resource (8)

2x Gang Sign (The Underway)

3x Same Old Thing (Creation and Control)

2x Security Testing (Honor and Profit)

1x Street Magic (Kala Ghoda) •
Icebreaker (4)

1x Aurora (Core Set)

1x Femme Fatale (Core Set)

1x Leviathan (Second Thoughts)

1x Crypsis (Core Set)
Program (2)

1x Sneakdoor Beta (Core Set)

1x Au Revoir (The Source)
48 cards (minimum 45)

14/14 (=15-1☆) influence used

Cards up to The Liberated Mind

Upcoming OP Events

That I'm taking part in (well planning to) or actually organising.

First up…

A second Spring kit 2016 is being cracked open on the 2/7/16 at The Hobbit Hole. So another chance to get those lovely brain damage tokens. Sadly their is no Worlds of Android book up for grabs this time.

At the end of July, 23/7/16 to be exact, there will be a store kit (not sure which one) being opened and battled over for Imperial Assault. I just need to get some practice games in now.

Finally for this post is an event I've organised…

20/8/16 sees Ashes getting the spot light. I've got two OP kits hopefully on their way over from the US.

You can visit the event page on the Plaid Hat website here that I've set up for this.

So now you know where I will be and what I'll be playing. Hopefully I'll see some of you at these events.

I'd love to get a Star Realms/Epic events organised, but White Wizard and Esdevium have decided to collaborate to make this extremely hard to do if you want to use an official OP kit. Esdevium aren't listing them for my FLGS to order them, and White Wizard are sounding like a broken record direct you to your FLGS and their distributor. And frankly I think this sucks. We have more than enough interest here to run events to both games. Sadly just can't get the support.


My first netrunner comp

Yesterday saw The Hobbit Hole run its first Netrunner event. John (the store owner) was using the Spring 2016 store kit. However to make this first event “special” I had donated a copy of Worlds of Android premium edition as the top prize.

So the Spring kit gave the following to use for prizes:

  • A set of acrylic brain damage tokens (first place)
  • Two alt art Leela Patel identity cards (top two)
  • Seventeen alt art Political Operative cards (basically participation prize)

Naturally I wanted first place not for the book (I already have it) but the brain damage tokens.

The combatants were John, Chris, Robert, Kar-Fai and myself. There could have been at least another three players but previous arranged commitments or work stopped them taking part. Robert was the surprise entry after his rage quitting of the game announcement on Tuesday. But somehow he had managed to build a deck Friday night.

My first round match up was with Chris. My Noise ran riot over Chris's Replicating Perfection deck. He romped away with seven unanswered agenda points to get the win. It was then my NEH deck taking on his Kate deck. My NEH is the deck I still think needs work. It's the ice, and more cards to do damage if the runner is tagged. However in this match up it was working nicely. All the little “tricks” were landing such as News Team being taken as a negative agenda point (twice) negating scored one point agendas. Daily Business Show is allowing me to bury agendas at the bottom of my deck. Chris having been wreck less against this deck before, had given me my only ever turn two win. So he was playing much more cautiously against this deck. But still I get the win. Chris isn't happy. His dreams of getting the Android book fading away.

Round two saw me against Kar-Fai. Our match up started off with my Noise against his HB deck (can't remember the id). Kar-Fai started off scoring an early Private Security Force. In reply I scored three agendas worth six points. I was hunting for that final winning agenda, mainly by hitting R&D, and archives. Kar-Fai had been forced to purge virus counters to stop my deep digging of R&D. I had been ignoring a card in his scoring server because I felt it was a trap. During my hunting, I took three tags. Kar-Fai started using the Private Security Force ability of doing meat damage. I had a couple of I've Had Worse in hand that kept me in the game. I should have but didn't get rid of the tags, but then again I had no money, I didn't really need it at this point I thought. After my turn I was left with two cards in hand, hoping this hadn't been noticed. But click one damage, click one damage, click one damage, I'm dead. If I had hit that ignored server I'd have won! Brilliant game.

Our second game saw Gabriel against my NEH. This was a close game also. Kar-Fai was making it hard to keep tags landed on his runner by spending money to clear them. So although I'd prefer to keep the tags on him, it did mean he had to spend clicks and money to clear them. Everytime Kar-Fai hit HQ he kept hitting one of the two Scorched Earths I had in hand and was not able to land. Another reason for him to keep clearing tags. In the end our game went to time, with Kar-Fai getting the win on having more agenda points.

The third and final round was against John. This was my first time ever against John. John was playing core set NBN. Noise did his job, ran amok again and won the first game. I can't remember the core runner or faction John was using. But the “tricks” were working, John was walking into traps. I had scored four one point agendas, I had an unguarded archives with a two point agenda hidden in it (that never got hit), my unguarded PAD Campaign never got trashed. John did keep clearing tags that I landed. In the end our game went to time, giving me the win.

The modified win against John meant I took second instead of drawing first. But Kar-Fai got the well deserved first place. Kar-Fai very generously let me have the brain damage tokens.

Final positions for the competition:

  1. Kar-Fai
  2. Me
  3. Robert (third round buy)
  4. John (first round buy)
  5. Chris

Well done Kar-Fai – a worthy winner. Hope you enjoy the book, and look forward to playing against you soon.

Robert confirmed he is definitely selling up, he just wasn't enjoying the game, and I think may have already have a buyer for his core set and data packs.

I had a great time playing yesterday, can't wait for the next event.

The next Netrunner event (with another Spring 2016 kit) is 2nd July.


Running tomorrow

Sorry for the lack of updates this week, been busy with work and under the weather hasn't helped. But starting to feel better so will start getting back up to the regular pattern.

Tomorrow starting around 10am is the first Netrunner store tournament at The Hobbit Hole in Chatteris.

Naturally I'm going with my Noise and NEH decks.

I'm hoping it's the above store kit. But I do know the first place prize is even better this time because there is also a copy of Worlds of Android up for grabs. I've donated my spare copy to try and attract players, and build up the community locally.

Looking forward to some great games tomorrow.


Frustrated from Chatteris

Last night I I managed to get a couple of games of Netrunner in. Practice for the coming weekends store comp.

The first game was my Noise against a Weyland deck. The corp took an early lead on the agenda front while I was building up my deck. I was very cash rich at the start, with a David out, Street Magic, Aesops, incubator out in support. Two parasites in hand.

My opponent quickly iced up archives, had a scoring server setup. I did some runs to get targets for the parasites to hit. With a second incubator out I was thinking I'd load up a medium and hit R&D. My parasites were attacking ice protecting archives and the scoring server.

Trashing one of my incubators to take out the ice on archives. Bingo! Five agenda points, back in the game.

Trashed the second incubator taking out the second piece of ice I was attacking with the other parasite. My David steam rolled through the remaining ice to get me the last two points for the win.

In our second game despite some misplays by both of us, I scraped out a win on agenda points.

The rest of the gaming group were playing 7 Wonders with all the expansions. There was some Magic action going on, plus the retro version of Bolt Action, Flint Action.

And while all this gaming goodness was going on Robert was struggling with his inner demons trying to build decks for Netrunner. His frustration almost turning into rage. I've since found out he has quit the game!


New Gaming Wing Additions 24Apr16

First up the mid point in the Mumbad Cycle cycle arrived. Nothing in this data pack really grabbed me as “this has to go in my deck”. So for the time being this is a bought to just keep my card pool upto date. I felt dirty typing that, and even dirtier reading it back.

The first expansions for Ashes that I pre-ordered arrived. It should be hitting the stores real soon. Like the art work the packaging for these expansions is beautiful.
Because I pre-ordered it from PlaidHat themselves I got two promo Phoenixborn. I already had Dimona so not much point putting another photo of her up here. However it is worth putting up the new promo Phoenixborn Lulu Firststone. I also got extra dice that PlaidHat are now selling. And were also up for pre-order at the same time as the expansions. Which technically means I could run a mono dice Phoenixborn!
Dimona will be used most likely as a prize in any Ashes event I organise. If I'm lucky I can get one of the OP kits PlaidHat do that are currently only available to stores and organise something.


Can you believe that the UK Games Expo wasn't one of the promo game tiles made for Suburbia by Bezier Games when they did the Game Con Bonus Tiles promos? I know shocking!

The replacement die for Dead of Winter arrived. Which means I'm a happy bunny. But it still eats away what happened to the previous one.
Finally some new additions to the minifig collection.

This time I do really mean finally a replacement Batman Love Letter. I will manage to keep one of these one day.

So that's all the new additions to the new gaming wing being built.

Street Magic in Chatteris

Last night was the now weekly journey from the frontier town that is Wisbech to further into the depths of the fens and the outpost town of Chatteris. The things we do to play games!

My first game of the evening saw Noise returning to the table to run against the Jinteki Personal Evolution. It felt good to have him back running. I really am an anarch at heart. My opening hand had Street Magic and Same Old Thing, plus a Hivemind and Streetpeddler. I decided to keep my cards.

The Corp scum took an early lead, after establishing a scoring server protected by three pieces of ice. I had none of my ice breakers (ok that's basically Faust and David, with a little help from Parasite and Datasucker) out. I did get Datasucker out early and an incubator.
The Corp did score an early Chronos Project taking out about five cards. The second one they scored took a larger chunk of cards out. Apparently this deck had been designed to cater for my Noise. Isn't that sweet?
My problem this game was econ, and not getting my ice breakers out. Aesops didn't appear to near the end, and the same for Faust.
I did score a couple of agendas, one from Archives and the other from R&D. And I could have won if I had the credits to score the agenda.
Looking back I think I should have done a mulligan on the starting hand. But I didn't want to lose that Street Magic.
I also got to play Star Fluxx. As usual this game is beautifully chaotic. Just when I thought I was going to win, but my plan was thwarted. Allowing the player after me to grab the win.
My final game of the evening was introducing Ben and some others to Love Letter The Hobbit Battle of the Five Armies. That's a bit of a mouthful so I just call it Love Letter Hobbit.
I do like this version of Love Letter, but not the gem tokens. So I replaced them with small blue cubes. I love the touches like the one ring having a zero value all during the round until the end when it gets a value of seven. Or Legolas and Tauriel having different win conditions.
Batman Love Letter is still my favourite but this is damn close. Still neither Ben or I won.
Yes there was some Bolt Action last night. Over in another corner was a group doing a draft cube of Magic.

It did seem quieter than usual last night. But then there are going to be nights like this.

There was also a club committee meeting last night. Basically it was blah blah blah to me, well I'm not a committee member, but Ben is, and it was held during our Netrunner game! So while that was on hold I was at a lose end. Which eventually saw me passing the time playing Star Fluxx.

I was called into the meeting to confirm I was volunteered (thanks Ben) to help out on the clubs Facebook page.

But as usual another fun evening of gaming in the depths of the fens.

It’s drafty

At the weekly Chatteris Warlords meetup last night there was a Netrunner Draft going on, whilst some X-Wing and historical ship miniatures games were being played, amongst other stuff.

I've done two or three drafts before, a D&D Dicemasters one at last years UK Games Expo, and a couple of Epic drafts (one with Nath and one at this weekly meetup).

I'm still kind of undecided how I really feel about drafts. I like them, nay enjoy them even. Do I love them?

Netrunner is a LCG where you pre-construct decks to play with. Everyone has the same pool of cards to build from. There are no blind boosters. So Netrunner doesn't lend itself to being able to do drafting like you can with say Magic the Gathering or Dicemasters.

So FFG came up with a solution to this that allows Netrunner players to draft.

Basically FFG sell you three decks that go together. The first deck is a base one that contains a draft runner id, a draft corp id, and a few core cards. Everyone gets the same cards in this base deck. The other two decks are made up of one for the corp and one for the runner.

Each of these two decks are made up of forty random cards chosen from a card pool of two hundred odd cards I believe. They are randomly chosen at time of printing at the FFG card printing shop they own in the US (they use this for the small run stuff like these draft decks, promo cards etc).

Starting with the corp deck you split the four cards into “packs” of ten by dealing from the top of the deck without looking at them or shuffling before hand. You then follow normal drafting rules using the four packs. You then repeat this for the runner deck.

After drafting you go off to your private spot to build a corp and runner deck from the cards you drafted. Having built your decks you pair up and duke it out as per normal in Netrunner, except you play to six agenda points instead of seven.

So having been through all of the above I played Ben. Our first game was my corp against his runner. Which ended in a victory for Ben. However I had an early Sundew and pad campaign giving me lots of credits, plus some ice out. Ben hit my snare in R&D. Unluckily he scored agendas that were in my HQ to get the win.

Our second game the roles were reversed. Ben had a scoring server iced up, had iced up his HQ and left R&D wide open. Ben had a card on his scoring server that he was advancing big time. It was either an ambush that was going to hurt me big time when I ran into it, or an agenda that gained extra points the more advancement tokens on it. It turned out to be the later, a Project Beale scored as four agenda points. I soon caught up scoring from the unprotected R&D. I was hitting R&D at least once a turn for free!

Ben installed a new card on his scoring server and advanced it once and iced up his R&D. Too little too late, I ran on his R&D, I couldn't break the ice or its subroutines, but there was no end of run, so I was through and scored the winning agenda.

So the evening ended a draw between myself and Ben.

It certainly was interesting drafting in Netrunner. Not having to worry about influence, or number of copies of cards whilst building your deck, certainly make for some interesting decisions and combinations.

For instance I drafted Wyldside, which gave me card draw, but also costs me a click. I ended up with Rachel Beckman (seemed to be a card no one wanted, I think due to cost, eight credit cost to install is expensive). With no pancakes to get the click back, Rachel Beckman is a costly but effective alternative in this limited card pool. You get one extra click to spend each turn, plus she gets discarded when you take a tag. So a little tag protection. The synergy didn't occur to me while drafting, but when deck building from my drafted cards.

Drafting I think makes a fun break from the regular deck building. I think it might be more popular if Esdevium/FFG didn't price the latest draft set so expensively. At the moment for those that want to draft the only way people can play it cost effectively is to buy the older sets.

Another great evening running.

Meat Damage

Easter Monday, a bank holiday in the UK, and the last day in a four day weekend that started on Good Friday. For some it's a religious holiday celebrating the death and resurrection of Christ, for others it's just a long weekend and an excuse to pig out of chocolate. On the chocolate front I pig out after Easter when the shops reduce the price of their Easter eggs, more sugar high for your money.

My Easter Monday afternoon was spent at my FLGS The Hobbit Hole at Chatteris.

I was there for an informal painting workshop that was being run. I was given a Warhammer tyranid that had already got a base coat on so was ready for painting to practice with. After doing a poor job painting the main areas, I got to try dry brushing. A technique I have wanted to get a grasp of. Yes I knew the theory of doing it. But needed the confidence to do it. Having the practice miniature and guidance was enough to help give confidence I needed.

Naturally I hadn't gone to the store empty handed. I had a small bag of games and decks with me also.

I had leant my copy of Get Bit! I'd taken along to a family there to play with. It was the least I could do having won a game of Fluxx with them. After the painting I got roped into playing a two player game of Get Bit! In the two player variant both players play two robots. The game was enjoyable, not earth shattering. It won't be leaving my collection soon, but only because I have very few games that youngsters can play.

Chris and I played our first game of Netrunner. It was my Shaper deck against his Jinteki Corp deck. Chris won this easily scoring agendas. He'd built up a nice scoring server that was well protected. I was getting cards in place, but economy was an issue this time for me this time. Not having funds to make runs because you can't pump your ice breakers isn't good.

Our second game saw his Kate deck against my NBN Corp deck. Turn one I set a trap for the runner in a single remote server, iced up R&D and HQ, on the runners turn they played a couple of cards, did a run on my trap and took a tag. “How many cards are in your hand?” I enquired not casually enough. I think the runner knew what was coming. Scorched Earth, BAM! Turn two kill!

Quickest win of my short time playing Netrunner. Wow that was like shockingly amazing.

We reset and played again. This time the game played out more like a typical game. Once again early on I had the cards to do the kill in hand. But the runner was more careful in avoiding tags this time.

My little “tricks” we're playing out. I let the runner score some one point agendas and getting Franchise City scored in response. The runner scored 15 Minutes, that went back into R&D on my turn. I was allowed to keep two Pad Campaigns in play, even with three agendas in hand and a Scorched Earth, I was still able to create lots of new servers. The bottom of R&D was getting loaded up with agendas thanks to Daily Business Show. The runner had even taken News Team as a minus one agenda point to avoid taking a tag.

The game came down to one final play, if the runner failed on the run I'd won, because I could score out the agenda. The first ice they hit was a Wraparound, which got +7 strength, breaking that with Crypsis emptied the runners pockets of credits. Next up Turnpike, the runner gets a tag – finally! Then he final piece of ice an Enigma that the runner was able to break. Bugger they were through and got the win. Next turn I could have played the two Scorched Earth to kill them, or scored the agenda.

What a fantastic game. Who cares that I lost, it was a blast.

After a flurry of text messages from Jonathan, our Pandemic Legacy evening was moved to Wednesday, and transformed in to a three player gaming evening.

Our first game of the evening was naturally Five Tribes, since in the text exchange Jonathan had said he wanted to play the game again. How much did Jonathan like the game? Well in a virtual shopping basket in a virtual store, in a virtual world, is a virtual copy waiting to be turned into a real physical item in meat space once a virtual button has been pressed, and digits representing money are moved from one virtual place to another. Or without all that waffle, it's sitting in his Amazon basket.

Once again Jonathan's tactic of buying items, ignoring the djinns or clearing tiles paid off and gave him the win. Obviously I'm really bad at this game and came in last by a point to Debbie. A single point!

We then switched things up by playing Five Tribes again but this time with the expansion The Artisans of Naqala. Wow this is a great expansion. It doesn't add tonnes of stuff, but boy oh boy. With the mountains and chasm more thought has to be given to routes, because these obstacles have to be gone round. The sixth tribe adds a new scoring avenue and power ups, the tent wooden token, adds a scoring booster. It's a very nice expansion that doesn't overload you with new rules to learn, it just fits very naturally with the base game.

Jonathan and Debbie's scoring just went ballistic this game, Jonathan burst through the two hundred points barrier. Debbie hit 179 points, while I managed to beat my previous score but was way way way behind the other two on scoring. So yes I lost again and Jonathan won.

We finished off the evening playing a couple of games of Batman Fluxx. I won the first game, while Debbie took the win for the second game. Like Love Letter with Fluxx you choose the theme you like and play that. Some slight changes to rules, the way things play, but you expect that. In Batman Fluxx keepers have abilities/rules that can be used. For example I think it was the Batmobile I could discard to gain another turn straight away at the end of mine. Or the Batcave increases the number of cards you can draw, hand limit, play by one.

I enjoy Fluxx, I like the changing rules and goals. It's not everyone's taste, I think the theme for tonight was right, and the others enjoyed playing it.

So a great bank holiday playing games, doesn't get better than that.


A Quiet Week

Business First th second data pack in the Mumbad Cycle arrived. Well that was a given really.

Plus the replacement card I needed for Lost Legacy arrived. If you remember I bought Lost Legacy off of the Facebook Trading and Selling page. Now I knew it didn't come with the nice little bags, which AEG kindly sent me for free. However I did discover a card that had a tear on the back of it. Which meant the card is useless unless I bought sleeves to use with the game that are opaque. This was a fault the seller hadn't declared and I was not happy with.

But once more AEG stepped up to the mark and sent me a replacement card.

How flipping cool are they. This is how customer support should be. The Fun Forge support is sooo slow and bad compared to AEG. AEG respond quickly (within 24 hours), and have the call resolved and replacements sent out within that time also. The replacement figure from Fun Forge is being shipped from China and won't be with me until sometime in April!!!! That's nearly two months to resolve.

Next week there is one item for sure, I might be lucky with Tiny Epic Kingdoms Second Edition and Heroes expansion arriving. Disappointingly The Others is being delayed until July, who knows I may see the expansions for Thunderbirds soon. It's nice to see some of the kickstarters coming to completion. But I can't help feeling disappointment with Cool Mini Or Not, because I feel that their delivery estimate was deliberately optimistic at best and misleading at worst. There is a big debate on the Kickstarter page on this at the moment.