There are no Secrets Except the Secrets that Keep Themselves

Chimpster 484

This is still a work in progress but so far, it's shaping up fairly well and seems to have pretty good matchups across the board (what I was attempting to achieve), though as with all glaciers, Noise still causes problems (unless you see Cerebral Static in your opening hand).

The basic premise for the idea was taken from the 'No Siphons, please' deck found here (, but with a vastly different approach on ICE and operations. Essentially, the core strategy remains intact, this deck doesn't need 3x TOL and 2x Archive Memories or Retrieval Order because it's playing in a style more commonly seen out of RP. Setting up a scoring remote and grinding out the scoring windows. The reason why we're in Tennin over RP is because of the great option to lock out the centrals and then score a Nisei with no counters via Tennin's ability and because I don't like leaving open remotes for security testings.

The agenda mix up is something I'm still working on, I'm still not 100% sure on the inclusion of the Braintrust and Philotic and I'm tempted to switch out to something else (maybe NAPD but this deck does play with BP). For the time being though, it seems to be efficient enough. You want to score the Nisei as soon as is safe and then rush out the Future Perfect to take you to match point. You can also potentially score 2 FP and then 1 Clone Retirement or 3x 2pters and 1 CR (I think it evens out the agenda pool nicely and has the added bonus of maybe getting lucky against Valencia or removing a Grim BP).

Jackson, Caprice and Crisium need no introduction and all three are hugely important (and I think 2x Crisium is probably the right amount).

Operation wise, we see a full blooded economy engine, running lots of cash and means to get upto the magical 10c for Restructure (Celebrity and Fundraiser love Restructure). I've also included 2x Cerebral Static as I'm getting a lot of mileage out of it in the current meta. As already mentioned, Noise is the death of glacier, if you're lucky enough to see this early, you can bring him to his knees so long as you keep R&D locked up tight. Cerebral also wrecks MaxX and can be useful against Leela once you're ready to score (I even used it against Stirling over the weekend, he was not impressed :P). Sure, it doesn't hurt Kate or Andy, but I think they're probably worth the include just for the Noise matchup alone. If Andy and Kate are still the runners of choice in your meta, maybe replace 1 with another TOL or Fundraiser. The deck does still have the 1 TOL to potentially close a game out if required but make no mistake, you need to get a scoring remote setup and get some glacier (TOL can always be used on a Nisei if the runner may have made a successful run you weren't expecting as well).

The ICE mixup is something that has been changing constantly, and I think it's finally in a place which works as intended. First off, an honourable mention to Changeling - my new favourite ice. It. Is. Incredible. Datasuckers have dropped off the radar and D4v1d is becoming more and more prevalent. A 4str sentry is a pain in the backside to break, especially for Shaper who are typically reliant on Mimic. Atman at 4 is the only real answer (and a potential weakness here due to Lotus Field), or Stealth breakers. Stealth Andy is definitely a bad a matchup against this deck and I'm still not wholly sure if it can fend off the onslaught of a fully setup Switchblade. It does have a lot of sentries (esp if you include Changeling) to hopefully soak up the Faeries and Silencer credits, but bottom line is that they can pick off remotes pretty comfortably unless you win psi games. Wormhole offers great flexibility against Criminals though, making itself a trash program via Grim or a can't run again via Excalibur. Don't expect to pay any less than 6 to rez it though, a good runner will deny advancements as much as they possibly can.

Overall though, I'm pretty happy with how it has performed so far. It definitely needs a little work but I think that it has potential in the post-Clot world we're about to find ourselves in.

Let me know what you think folks!

2 Apr 2015 Shielsy

Looks good!

Any consideration given to Mamba > Grim? You mentioned the bad pub could be an issue, and Mamba actually has a lot of synergies with Komainu and Philotic, as well as Fetal AI.

3 Apr 2015 Chimpster

Grim makes Wormhole a much bigger threat and I don't think the bad pub is too bad (there are some circumstances where you won't bother rezzed grim, but most of the time it's worth it). Mamba is decent in a deck with house of knives but I don't think it fits here at all. It's a significant investment for what often only ends up being 1 net damage. Grim much more powerful here.

6 Apr 2015 Bigguyforyou518

Your ICE seems a bit porous for Tennin - do you find this to be an issue at all? I'm seeing 8 of your 19 ICE with End-the-Run subroutines (10 if you count Wormhole), compared to afishisborn's 14 out of 19. With your relaxation on the typical fast-advance style of most Tennin decks, I would think you'd want your servers to be more airtight.

How do you deploy your ICE - do you just tax on centrals and stop them on your scoring remote?

Without trap assets like Shock!, Shi.Kyū, or Space Camp, you need to wall off archives just like everything else (more so against Anarch), and with something at least mildly discouraging to the runner.

afishisborn says in his deck write-up that you linked,

"once you have them spending 6-10 credits per run, start setting up your scoring server."

Do you find that happening with your current ICE spread and econ?

It also seems odd that in a deck that de-emphasizes Trick of Light plays, you only have 3 ICE that can actually use your Tennin tokens (5 if you count Changeling, but that's card you want to advance selectively, not randomly). Do you ever feel like your tokens are wasted, or does your deck just not rely on them, and actually hope that the runner will shut off your ability and exhaust themselves?

To this, afishisborn says

"Thirdly, you will bluff out your other ice as ice walls. I've had many confident runners charge into a twice advanced Wall of Thorns, expecting at the worst to be knocked out by a Fire Wall. This is not an amazingly strong strategy, but given you'll find many turns without a good advanceable target, it never hurts."

This seems like insanity to me. Why treat such a powerful econ ability like a throwaway strategy? I'm not saying you do this, but it seems like your deck takes a similar approach to advancement targets. If you have to spend awhile building up a safe scoring remote, then chances are you wont always have an agenda down while you're getting tokens.

6 Apr 2015 Chimpster

Thanks for the reply, hopefully I can address some of the concerns!

The thing I found most problematic with afishisborn's list was its lack of taxing ice combined, especially against decks that could recur Parasites or could stick a Yog down. 5 pieces of 'yoggable' ice is not inconsiderable in a meta which has seen a huge rise of Anarch. Equally, Tsurgi rarely made up for its high rez cost, ETR subroutine or not. Wall of Thorns and Eli both suffer from the same vulnerability, Lady and general Shaper recursion. I think the author is probably right to go 'all in' on trying to use Lady token up asap but I'd much rather spend the influence on cards that are more targeted to hurt Shaper (given that D4v1d and Sharpshooter recursion are a glaring weakness here). Just because a piece of ICE doesn't say ETR doesn't mean that it won't accomplish just that. You aren't going to run through a Grim if you don't have the means to break it, and the means to break it are blumming expensive (unless you are as already mentioned, recursion Shaper). Ice wall equally suffers from a complete lack of taxation unless you can stack tokens on it a mile high. Firewall seems a far more reliable means of taxation, starting out at a respectable 5 and potentially locking down a server with tokens (also forcing the use of more D4v1d tokens, as you either have to go all in or not bother). Having 'porous' servers isn't the worst thing in the world when you're trying to open up a scoring window to get out a Nisei or Future Perfect. Just as an aside, I am looking at maybe replacing the Pup and Yagura with 2x Cortex Lock, though I am concerned with the 4str vulnerability vs Shaper. Definitely something I'm going to be testing.

At least one piece of ice has to be placed on archives, yes, but once it is, it is rarely worth the run to deny a counter. Paying a click and a few credits is a heck of an investment for denial of that nature, and I'm rarely unhappy to see it happen given this deck isn't as reliant on tokens as most Tennin decks are.

On your final point, you're right in that you really shouldn't underestimate the power of playing 'never advance' with Tenins ability on cards like Nisei, or being able to gain another free click after scoring an agenda (with the extra advancement). This is a click and a credit worth of value, and while you won't get ETF level's of value out of it, you also gain significant tempo from not having to use your whole turn to score out an agenda. The flexibility of say using a restructure before you score the agenda can be huge. Regardless, getting free/cheap Wormholes is a big deal, and definitely something that makes the Tennin ability worthwhile alone. Being able to switch up Changeling is also a nice tempo play.

Bottom line is that the pressure to run against Tennin is not insignificant for the runner, and this can keep them in a hole or allow you to advance your board state nicely while defending against key cards like Siphon.

Hopefully this helps to clarify a few of the deck choices. I've been having pretty decent success with the list overall, and certainly haven't been hurting for more ETR. Dependent on your meta, it would be easy to chance the Pup or Swordsman for more ETR if you feel it's lacking, and there's definitely scope for further improvements.

Let me know how you find it!

6 Apr 2015 Bigguyforyou518

On your agendas, I feel like you should try to stick to 4/2's to make the best use of Tennin's ability to install unadvanced, and then score it completely on the next turn. As frustrating as The Future Perfect is for runners, it feels awkward here, where you'll always have to spend at least two turns actively advancing it. Even if you're dead set on not using Trick of Light, I would strongly suggest fitting 3x Medical Breakthrough in. Finally, with 3 Future Perfects, consider what the average board state is going to look like if you ever score Philotic Entanglement. It's much more brutal in Jinteki: Personal Evolution, but even there, I would hesitate to play this agenda if I wasn't rolling with some combo cards like Neural EMP or Ronin to play off of it.

6 Apr 2015 Chimpster

First off, I definitely think you're wrong in your criticism of 3x Future Perfects. It's absolutely the right call when you ideally only want to be scoring out 3 agendas. Having self protecting 3 pointers is a big deal (even if it's not precise) and once that 1st Nisei has been scored, they are far easier to score than you might imagine. Ultimately, this is exactly the same in an RP list, and we all know how successful they have been of late.

On the Medical Breakthrough point, this is an area of debate I'm having with a couple of guys on the netrunners forums and I'm still not sure whether it's the right call or not. Having a 2/2 agenda is potentially very nice, but I'm not sure it's worth increasing the agenda count for or having one inferior 4/2. I still think having 2 3/2's and 1 2/1 is the right call, especially when you can get luck and clear a bad pub with it. Philotic isn't looking to flatline here, it's simply a better 3/2 than Braintrust and has the potential to score a net damage or 2 for a little bit of extra tempo.

Fundamentally, this is an RP deck in Tennin clothes but with the added advantage of not playing open remotes like RP often has to (or spending ice to defend said remotes) and also forcing pressure on the runners each and every turn. If you're familiar with how an RP game plays out, this deck will be incredibly familiar.

6 Apr 2015 Bigguyforyou518

Fair enough. I've never personally been a big fan of The Future Perfect (or 3 pointers in general), but I realize I'm almost certainly in the minority here. Too many frustrating losses of psi games, taxing myself into oblivion by constantly playing psi games, and too many times of wanting to win a game with 3 agendas turning rapidly into losing a game in 3 agendas.

6 Apr 2015 Chimpster

Psi games are certainly a bit of a buggerance, and can swing either way. This deck (and the same is said of RP decks), will often leak early agendas before establishing a fairly hard lock on the game. It's not uncommon for me to drop 5 earlyish points before closing the game out comfortably once I get to the late game. In terms of taxing yourself out by playing psi games, this deck has an absolute buttload of money, and I rarely find myself too skint. I definitely prefer the operation economy over the asset one, it makes R&D less porous while also granting great burst economy when it's needed.

Like I say, give it a try and let me know what you think, would definitely value any opinions on what works well and what doesn't (because it's definitely not a finished product yet)!

6 Apr 2015 Bigguyforyou518

I will definitely try it. As you alluded to, I think the difficulty is going to be getting out of the typical Tennin mindset and into the RP one :P