Xanatos Gambit

tiedyedvortex 4334

Xanatos Gambit: a plan in which all foreseeable outcomes lead to success for the creator.

This deck revolves around a single play, which should be made as early as possible. You Mushin No Shin down either a Cerebral Overwriter or a Mandatory Upgrades. This leads to four outcomes, all of which are favorable:

  • It's an Overwriter and they run it. With your ID ability, this gives them a 1 card hand for the rest of the game.
  • It's an Overwriter, and they leave it alone. You now have the world's most secure server for your Shell Corporation.
  • It's a Mandatory Upgrades and they leave it alone. You score, and immediately begin fast advancing like there's no tomorrow, occasionally dropping and using Melange Mining Corp. in the same turn for crazy amounts of money.
  • It's a Mandatory Upgrades and they run it. You play a Media Blitz and start fast advancing anyway.

Elis, NEXT ice, and Turing let you set up secure centrals pretty fast, with the potential for a strong late game. Cyberdex Virus Suite for Clot. Archived Memories to recur whatever you need. And, of course, everyone's favorite toy manufacturer for that all-important recursion.

30 comments
10 Oct 2015 thecodetroll

wow O_O this is dirty. I'd drop 1 gold and add in mother goddess. but thats only because thats my go-to NEXT set up heh.

10 Oct 2015 esutter479

Dirty? It's downright EVIL...and only 3 weeks away from Halloween, too. :) This might be what I switch to if my CP deck ends up shitting the bed on me!

10 Oct 2015 tiedyedvortex

Glad you guys like it. I realized I should also talk through two not-uncommon situations for this deck:

If you draw your Mushin No Shin but no Overwriters or Upgrades, your best bet is to use it on a Project Vitruvius. If they don't run it, you can either overscore it for the recursion...or, if you're feeling gutsy, pretend it was a failed Overwriter and use it to "protect" your Shell Corp, pulling it out for a surprise win later on.

If you draw your Mandatory Upgrades but no Mushin No Shin, that's still not terrible. You can always try to pull the "Waldemar Maneuver", which goes like this:

  • Install, advance once. They will probably assume it's an NAPD contract, or a trap.
  • If they don't run, you advance it twice on the next turn. Now they're suspicious: why didn't you just score it if it were an NAPD? Almost no runners will risk it at this point.
  • Triple advance and score.

If they get wise to this trick, then do it again with an Cerebral Overwriter and watch them fry.

10 Oct 2015 LynxMegaCorp

Love this concept. And the write up is similar to Credible Threat, posted 3 decks ago. :P

10 Oct 2015 RubbishyUsername

Super interesting seeing the differences between this and dodgepong's list: netrunnerdb.com

10 Oct 2015 JinMos

Time to run singleton of singularity...

12 Oct 2015 rumirumirumirumi

I've been pretty skeptical of these Mushin + Man Up decks out of CD, but I am really liking the way this one runs. I've been able to get a lot of value off of Project Vitruvius when Man Up isn't available to Mushin. Recurring Mushin or Hedge Fund has helped in keeping the pressure on the runner. It also is very flexible for rush if you can't get the FA thing rolling well.

The NEXT ice are pretty susceptible to to Parasite. Do you have any particular way of dealing with them? So far I've just grit my teeth and bear it (or if I have Vitruvius counters bring back Bronzes and Silvers).

12 Oct 2015 tiedyedvortex

@rumirumirumirumi: If Parasites are giving you hell, I would swap in some Architects in place of some of the Eli 1.0s and Turing. Architect is both immune to Parasite, and recurs your NEXT Silvers if they get trashed.

12 Oct 2015 Dydra

Wahahahahahah this is crazy fun. Kudos for comming up with that. :) Just have to care for finding and not getting Imped or smt else your Media Blitz

12 Oct 2015 Chuftbot

Yeah, I love this. Cybernetics is a pet project of mine and this is a fantastic take on it. Media Blitz in particular is a brilliant include.

15 Oct 2015 triplenine

Love this. I was running a similar set up but the loss of an MU hurt. I guess I should pay more attention to spoilers. Media Blitz is so rad in this.

19 Oct 2015 Dydra

This deck gets Dydra's seal of approval! (y)

20 Oct 2015 Creedsk8

How does Overwriter protect shell?

20 Oct 2015 esutter479

It protects Shell by saying to the runner, "Hey chap, run here and you risk losing the game in one fell swoop!" Since IHW doesn't guard against brain damage and hardly anyone uses Feedback Filter, it's really a good pseudo-ICE to use in a tricky deck like this.

20 Oct 2015 Creedsk8

I'm I not seeing something, can't they just not access overwriter and trash shell? I e found shell to be the hardest card in the game to pull off. Like the deck tho going to try it out soon.

20 Oct 2015 rumirumirumirumi

Unless there are additional costs like in Gargarin or restrictions like Queen's Gambit, the runner must access all cards in the remote server, so you don't get to only choose the goods, you have to access the bad too.

20 Oct 2015 tiedyedvortex

@Creedsk8 The runner isn't allowed to selectively access cards. If you make a successful run on a remote server, you MUST access all cards in that server. (Except in Gagarin but that's an edge case). It's similar to how you must access every card in Archives if you run it, which is what makes cards like Shock! so useful.

20 Oct 2015 GrantZilla1979

Have you run across many Drive By when playing this deck? That's my favorite counter to Mushin currently.

20 Oct 2015 tiedyedvortex

@GrantZilla1979 Drive By pretty much murders this deck, yeah. I've been trying to figure out if there's a place I can cut influence to put in Back Channels instead of Shell Corp but the only thing to cut would be Jackson Howard and I'm not sure that's the right call.

27 Oct 2015 DevronHubbard

Have you tried this with +1 Back Channels, -1 Jackson? Did you try swapping something else for it?

29 Oct 2015 Windave

You can always rez the cerebral overwriter to prevent Drive By

1 Nov 2015 Tolaasin

I've played this deck a few times - lots of fun, but I have a few thoughts/questions. I seem to be often struggling for economy - and given also that the wins I've had have come from Media Blitz with Mandatory Upgrades scored by the runner, rather than overwriters which hit, I wonder whether this would be better off in Haas-Bioroid: Engineering the Future? Shell Corporation is neat when protected but I don't think I've managed to get this up and running more than a couple of times. Maybe putting in Back Channels if the trap fails? I'm still pretty new to NetRunner so I'm guessing there's more to it than this ...

3 Nov 2015 travisrchance

@tiedyedvortex Been playing this deck all week on jinteki.net and am not finding the 3 Melange to be what I want/need most of the time. Sure, it CAN be amazing, but often times, it puts me on a tougher decision, esp. with so few ICE, meaning you can't protect on all the nec. fronts. Further, a smaller deck with an auto-trashable has not been a hot one either. I subbed in 3 Green Level Clearance for the 1 Suite and 2 Melange, just to try it for throughput and to give me that one-shot boost, and I find it to be decent. No, it is not as absurd, when you are in that "Melange for X turns" in a row. Things don't always shake out where the snap Melange and do something else is AS viable as something else. It can get awk with Shell Corp unless you are just on "money.plan." Lots of trashables, three of which are 0, 3 of which are 1, means multiple RD hits get rough quick.

I am also not vibing on the 3 Mushin. With only the 2 options, things start to feel a little binary after you land one, or the other. Yes, I wanna find one, but without an Overwriter. Part of me wants 1 Agg Sec, but then we have MORE trashables. But it helps to keep things scary and lets the NEXT ICE get a second wind once they just become taxing ICE. With Overwriter being 0, if they trash 1 or even 2, the odds are in their favor--though the Archived for Overwriter and then Mushin is a mean, mean play :)

Lastly, part of me wants another ICE in there, to increase odds of hitting on ABT, which is sooooo good.

I love the deck though. Thoughts?

3 Nov 2015 tiedyedvortex

@travisrchance Honestly, you've probably played the deck more than I have at this point. I think your comments are definitely valid, but I'm not sure what the best answer is.

I think the general consensus is that Shell Corporation is probably not the best answer to failed Cerebral Overwriter play. If you're already finding that 3 Mushins is too many, it would be easy to do -2 Shell Corp -1 Mushin +2 Back Channels +1 Archived Memories.

As for the Melanges, they were mostly included because you can install and use them in the same turn once you've scored or Media Blitz'd an Upgrades. If you find that they make R&D too easily to dig through, then switching to operation economy like Green Level Clearance, Restructure, or Successful Demonstration will keep the credits flowing.

More ICE means less of something else. If you find that the Back Channels switch is enough of a patch for the economy, then maybe dropping the Melanges (or GLCs or whatever) is okay. I would say that Architect is the best choice here: it compensates for NEXT ice's weakness to Parasite, it can bring back expired Overwriters, and it can help you score out 3/2s.

5 Nov 2015 patty3123

I don't understand how shell Corp is protected. Why can't the runner just choose to access the upgrade? Don't they choose which cards they want to access ?

5 Nov 2015 DevronHubbard

They choose the order, but all cards must be accessed.

5 Nov 2015 esutter479

No, they cannot. That was answered earlier in this thread. :)

12 Nov 2015 travisrchance

@tiedyedvortex Thanks for the replies. I have tried some of the changes discussed, which are tight with the 44 card deck size being ideal. I will keep at it!

10 Dec 2015 trogdor

I have found switching out 1 Cerebral Overwriter for Plan B to be helpful. If the runner catches on to what you are doing and runs Vamp or Account Siphon so that they can run the Mushin'd card "safely" you can still take advantage of it.

30 Dec 2015 Myriad

I gotta ask. Does GFI warrant an include? It would require the runner to score half the agendas in the deck to win if you did run it.

Maybe dropping 1 Mandatory for a Beta test and swapping in two GFIs? Also fast track!