Hey, it's the new Project Junebug!
It got buffed by quite a bit. Let's go down the list:
- It now does damage even if you haven't advanced it yet
- It doesn't cost credits to set off, so you can explode people even when you're broke
- It costs 2 to trash instead of 0, so it's no longer insta-dead if they find it in R&D
It does grow more slowly than Junebug, but thanks to the free +2 damage, it still keeps pace for a while. At 0 and 1 advancement, it's the better than junebug. At 2 they're even. 3 advancement and onwards, Junebug is in the lead, but in practice, it was very rare to ever land a junebug for more than 4 net damage. (Not impossible of course, but unlikely.) And of course, if you have 4 or more advancement on it, it's probably a moot point, since 6 net damage will kill almost as many runners as 8...
So this is very close to a strict upgrade from the venerable Junebug.
The only real big downside that I can see is the influence - Junebug was one influence, so it was extremely easy to splash. (Which was important, since in Jinteki everyone thinks about the possibility of Junebugs, but they're a lot less cautious around, say, Weyland!) Two influence for Urtica Cipher makes it harder to casually throw a copy or two into your non-jinteki decks.
Overall though, a welcome improvement to one of the most iconic traps in Jinteki's arsenal!
One other thing - this card is in the same set as Clearinghouse, which allows for some really nasty corp mind games. Just something to think about...
The increased trash cost is definitely a huge deal. Trap decks always folded quite hard to multi access. Sure, hitting Snare hurt, but for 0 credits you get to trash it— Cpt_nice
Same with Junebug, which does nothing in centrals. This is a nice buff.— Cpt_nice