Blood in the Water

Blood in the Water X/2

Agenda: Research

X is equal to the number of cards in the Runner's grip.

Some tests require specific conditions.
Illustrated by Scott Uminga
Decklists with this card

Midnight Sun (ms)

#39 • English
Startup Card Pool
Standard Card Pool
Standard Ban List (show history)
Printings
Midnight Sun
Rulings
  • What is the base trace strength for Amani Senai’s ability if Blood in the Water is scored or stolen?

    Amani Senai’s base trace strength will be equal to the number of cards in the Runner’s grip.

  • What choice does the Runner need to make with RNG Key to gain credits or draw cards if the next card they access is Blood in the Water?

    The chosen number must be equal to the number of cards in the Runner’s grip at the time RNG Key’s last sentence resolves during the access of Blood in the Water. This is not necessarily the same as the number of cards in the Runner’s grip when the choice is made. For example, if the Runner has 4 cards in their grip when the run is declared successful, but suffers 1 net damage from Hokusai Grid before breaching the server, they will need to have chosen the number 3 in order to draw cards or gain credits with RNG Key.

Reviews

Diogene notes that this can be used to kill in Jinteki: Personal Evolution. That's exactly right, and I'll go further. In PE, this is not really an agenda. It's an improved Neural EMP.

You don't play Neural when the runner has a full hand. You play it to flatline them. That means Blood in the Water never costs more than Neural. When the runner's at 0 cards, it's free, and when they're at 1 card, it's 1 and 1. You can even score two from hand to kill a runner for 1.

But the real win is that this version of Neural doesn't take a deck slot... not really. It replaces Project Yagi-Uda or whatever other useless agenda your PE deck wasn't planning to score anyway. So you've got an extra non-agenda deck slot to work with.

One downside compared to Neural: the runner can take it from you. But they would have taken the Yagi-Uda too, and you still have that extra non-agenda card.

(Midnight Sun era)

Totally agree!

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You might be able to score this easily after the runner pays to score Obokata or hits a Snare late on their turn, or if low-hand-size decks become viable. This wacky card was not limited to 1 per deck, and I love the boldness there. An agenda-scoring window triggered by anything besides credits is interesting game space.

This is the most inspired Jinteki card from a set which has been a disappointment.

(Midnight Sun Booster Pack era)

Lol so if runner has zero cards in grip, u cud score 3 of these with no money in a turn ! Quality!

Those are two big ifs which I think a competent player should usually be able to play around. I think playing conservatively on hand size against Jinteki is usually a good idea even if the card pool doesn't include a Neural EMP which immediately kills you on zero cards.

If you play with Jinteki: Personal Evolution, you might know the much regretted Neural EMP, the scourge and cause for so many flatlines.

In PE, this agenda will allow you to possibly kill from hand. Here is an example : take out those 2 cards with something (like Clearinghouse or Sting!) and then score this from hand with one click (no cards in hand mean it cost 0 to score), which would give a net damage, flatlining the runner.

But even out of Jinteki: Personal Evolution, this is a great card. It pairs well with Anemone and Snare!, by reducing the runners hand, making it possible for you to score a 2 points agenda from hand.

This agenda will becomes a popular agenda in Jinteki, for any ID, since it synergize so well with what the faction does best : damage the runner.

The art is well made and bring to mind exactly the name and what the agenda does. The quote is nice (and true) and has a dark and grim tone, which promote the art even more. Phenomenal.

(Midnight Sun era)
2547

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(Midnight Sun era)