Astrolabe

Hardware: Console • Install: 1 • Influence: 2

+1

Draw 1 card whenever the Corp creates a server.

Limit 1 console per player.

"There is no better tool for charting the empty spaces of the net." -Nasir Meidan
Shaper • Gong Studios • Up and Over 79
Links: Decklists | ANCUR
Astrolabe
Reviews

I realize that I should be comparing this card to other consoles. But since my current runner deck wasn't actually running a console at the time this card came out, I found myself comparing it to Akamatsu Mem Chip instead. If you aren't running another console, and all you really need is a single point of memory boost, no other card does it better. Yes, the draw ability is fantastic against corporations that play very "sideways" like NEH, and just okay against other corporations. But if you're using it as a replacement for a single Akamatsu, even getting one draw out of this card makes it better.

At the end of the day, I guess what I'm saying is that it's pretty hard to beat a card that gives you 1 memory and another bonus for only 1 credit. This will be my console for a little while.

129

Something often overlooked by runners is that because Astrolabe's card draw is mandatory, it can be abused by the Corp at (in)opportune times. Wait until the runner ends their turn with a full hand and 0-1 s, and then just start spamming remotes (you might even go bold and throw down a naked agenda). This puts the runner in a pretty nasty dilemma - they start their turn with 8 cards in hand and no money. If they don't want to trash those shiny new cards, they need to play them, but if they want to play them, they need to get credits back first...and what about those remotes?? There's 3 of them they need to check!

Things to consider:

  • Shapers tend to have a lot of recursion, so they may not be too heartbroken if they have to temporarily discard a program or two.
  • 0 cards are a thing. Self-modifying Code, Modded(wince), and Same Old Thing make frequent appearances in Shaper decks, so you might still be doing them a favor.
  • You probably shouldn't try this against Hayley Kaplan: Universal Scholar, especially if she has some drip econ established.
  • Hardware is very difficult for the runner to get rid of (Aesop's Pawnshop, Trade-In). If you are running kill cards like Scorched Earth (or constant damage decks like Argus or Jinteki: Personal Evolution) and the runner's deck is starting to get low, you can "mill" them into flatline range (this is especially hilarious when they've been holding I've Had Worse in their hand and it suddenly becomes worthless).
  • Jank Extra Credit: Drop (and force the runner to draw) up to 5 cards in a single turn with Shipment from MirrorMorph, or play Ad Blitz to vomit up some obscene combination of the 8 types of advertisements you can theoretically stuff your deck with. Suck it, Fisk.
Let's not forget Personal Workshop, shall we? —
Also a funny little jank is that every card that the runner gains from Astrolabe also feeds Sweeps Week. It could give you a few extra creds, for whatever that's worth. —
I managed a 'dream' play against someone running Astrolabe in my horizontal NBN deck... I had two Turtlebacks rezzed, installed 2 new remotes, and played Sweeps. 4 from the Turtlebacks, 6 from the Sweeps, 2 new servers, and a free card. Great turn! —