Resource: Virtual • Install: 2 • Influence: 2

The install cost of each piece of ice that is not installed in the innermost position is increased by 1.

"To beat cautious sysops, you've got to get creative. Commandeering Network systems is like using their own strengths against them." -Kabonesa Wu
Shaper • Alexandr Elichev • Daedalus Complex 7
All sets:
Links: Decklists | ANCUR
Network Exchange
MWL Entries

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Rulings

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Reviews

This feels like it's a Criminal or maybe Anarch card that's been put into the wrong faction.

Regardless, lets look at this from a purely economic standpoint; credits in, to credit differential out.

Cost:

  • spent installing
  • 2 install cost.
  • The card itself.

  • Approximate Total Cost: 4-6 of value, depending on card to credit, and click to credit efficiency.

Output:

  • 1 per non-innermost ice.

So, in theory, the Corp needs to install at least 5 non-innermost ice over the game for this to "break even".

Then, this becomes a decent effect from 8 non-innermost ice and upwards; which I'm sure you'll agree, is not particularly practical; especially if you don't have ice-destruction tools to help you with it.

Furthermore, this is assuming you get to install this early in the game, which certainly isn't a guaruntee; and can cost you resources you desperately need for other purposes, so you are unlikely to get full value out of this anyway.

However, these are stackable, and forcing credit loss is often far more valuable than credit gain; especially as the Runner, so despite it's bad stat-line for what it is, it may well be entirely playable, even if the best support is in other factions.

At the very least, we can be glad this isn't some insane monster of a card that totally kills glacier, only an interesting card that might just slow it down a little.

(Daedalus Complex era)
152
Use it with Ankusa to troll Weyland glacier decks, maybe? —
Perhaps not just Ankusa, but Inversificator and this show off a new side to Shaper which is about messing with the corp's math, just to watch them lose chill. —
...oh hey, I just figured out why Inversificator is in the same pack as Adjusted Matrix...that's fun —
This works well out of Kit to help keep servers short —
This is the text that should have been on Unscheduled Maintenance, the only crim current. —
I've also seen people stack 5, 6, 7, or more ice on a single remote against Smoke. So a pair of these would hurt them pretty bad. I just wish it was in the same faction as Vamp or Siphon. Maybe this is a Jesminder card? —
I feel like this card with Leela Patel's ability would be fun to mess around with. —

While people are right to be skeptical of this card's value, there are scenarios where it has merit. If glacier becomes a more common archetype after the MWL 1.2 hit that Rumor Mill took, then the value of this card increases. Its upsides:

  • combined with effects that force ICE to be installed repeatedly or incentize multiple ICE servers, the credit drain can be real
  • it stacks so lucky draws where you see multiples early quickly become oppressive
  • increased cost as opposed to "corp loses 1" is important since a poor corp cannot install ICE without first clicking for credits (e.g. think of a Pop-up Window or Vanilla that the corp wants to put at the outermost position)
  • corp credits are more valuable than runner credits; Vamp trades credits at a rate worse than one-for-one but is a powerful effect in Netrunner. NE is similar; even if you've spent about 4 installing NE, if it drains the corp for that much it's paid off OK since runners have persistent econ cards like Kati & MOpus while the corp has to rely on trashable assets for persistent econ

There are several effects which increase the value of Network Exchange: False Echo, Inside Job, Leela Patel, Rielle "Kit" Peddler, DDoS. All of these cards push the corp towards multi-ICE servers. If you're not running some effect like this however, NE is unlikely to provide enough value. Here are a couple prototype lists that look to maximize the value:

To be clear: I'm not saying these are strong decks, there are definitely better options for both IDs, but these are the sort of lists that maximize NE's value by forcing multiple ICE servers, slowing down the corp, and building to a strong late game.

Its downsides:

  • must be seen early to have an impact, dead card in the late game
  • expensive in terms of influence & install cost for the effect
  • useless in matchups where the corp rarely double ICEs servers (e.g. asset spam)

On the whole, even in lists built to maximize its value, there are typically cards that accomplish a similar credit drain more consistently, such as Vamp and (less so) Exploit. Given that Vamp is the same influence, easier to both tutor (Planned Assault) & recur (Same Old Thing), it's hard to justify the effort needed to build around NE.

Color Pie Post Scriptum: I think this card is in Shaper for balance and not theme reasons. It would be problematic in Criminal or Anarch and likely a lot more playable since it could be more easily combined with effects like Leela, Inside Job, Vamp, Reina, etc.

(Station One era)
2191