bionicsheep 1367

I've been running this for a few weeks and it's obscenely strong, like 80-90% win rate against even PPVP Kate decks strong. It's sort of a variation on a couple of existing themes, but it works like a charm.

I've called it Syncromodernism because it feels like a Supermodernism deck, in terms of quickly setting up powerful lose-lose scenarios for the runner and scoring behind cheap ETR ice. You're not quite so kill-reliant, but wearing tags willy-nilly isn't a good idea either.

Play tips:

  • Install a News Team naked early on to see if they're running remotes. News Team is consistently the MVP of this deck.
  • Scoring server is Data Raven into ETR with a Keegan behind it. I've played extensively about shapers and it turns out that their recursion isn't all it's cracked up to be when you trash literally everything.
  • Fire that Scorch given the opportunity even if you don't get the kill. It'll hit some recursion or something they're trying to save from Keegan, and they'll slow down on wearing tags.
  • Scorch and Psychographics are punishments for tag me, which I've tested against a fair bit.
  • Runners often forget to count how many points are left in the deck and hit R&D repeatedly in search of 2pts in 15 cards. This isn't really a play tip, but it is pretty funny to watch?
  • Film critic hurts, but unless they're running three, it's not so bad.
  • If you score an astro, consider install-advancing a GFI. They'll assume NAPD and you can score it out with the token.
  • Two Astros because 2-pointers are sort of a hindrance rather than a help. 10 agendas is the perfect number; not worth cutting the TGTBT for another Astro.

glhf :)

12 Oct 2015 Chuftbot

Messing with agenda points feels incredibly strong out of SYNC, so I really like what you've got going here. Not 100% sure on the lack of solid ETR ICE though. Has that presented an issue?

12 Oct 2015 Frogblast

I've been wrecked by this deck on OCTGN today, Data Raven and Keegan Lane is just annoying and the cost of removing tags is quite high eventhough I had magnum opus :(

13 Oct 2015 Bigguyforyou518

Just completely wrecked someone piloting this on Was playing Turntable Leela, knew exactly what they were doing, they telegraphed every play exactly as you wrote it. I calmly ate all the -agenda point traps and let them deck themselves while econ-denying them and bouncing/derezzing/bypassing their Data Ravens.

This deck suffers from not having enough Scorched Earths, not having enough AstroScript Pilot Programs, and not enough money, frankly. As long as they control the board, running into agenda point traps isn't forcing a bad decision on the runner - they should just eat them and keep running.

Maybe +1 The All-Seeing I and +1 Archived Memories?

13 Oct 2015 bionicsheep

@Chuftbot Nope, it's never presented a problem. 6 solid ETRs in a 44-card deck in combination with Keegan Lane does the trick consistently, since they're only really necessary on a scoring remote - HQ and R&D can be relatively porous.

@Bigguyforyou518 I'd be interested to test more extensively against Leela, I can certainly see her harassment being an issue. That said, Reality Threedee has consistently done work for me against tag-me decks, and although I click for credits fairly regularly, I can't think of anything I'd want to cut for more econ / AM splash. I definitely see the argument for that variant though!

13 Oct 2015 UminWolf

I'm in the same boat as @Bigguyforyou518. Negative agenda point traps aren't really traps. So I would drop the Shi.Kyūs for another Scorched Earth and maybe 2 Archers. Using Keegan Lane to trash their sentry breaker right before they face check Archer could be game ending, plus it's ETR ICE. All you have to do is throw a Data Raven in front :)

I would also drop the News Teams for some more money; maybe even 2 Beanstalk Royalties instead of 1 of the Archers that I was saying. Or even 1 or 2 Closed Accounts for different tag punishment, though with SYNC they'll hopefully already be getting poorer.

13 Oct 2015 bionicsheep

@UminWolf Not seeing the argument that minus points aren't traps - unless the runner can consistently mine R&D every turn with big digs and score almost all the points in the deck before the corp can score anything, forcing the corp to self-mill, taking the minus points makes it almost impossible for the runner to win on points. I regularly win games where the runner has 7+ points worth of agendas, but between GFIs, News Teams and Shi Kyus, they can't score out. Meanwhile, in that time, I've probably got 2-3 Quantum Predictive Models scored and the Astro train running.

I see the argument for more money, but the most money this deck ever usually needs is 5-8 credits, which isn't ever insurmountable - I might could trade out Reality Threedee for something, but I've found it does a lot of work and runners are rarely happy to trash it. I definitely wouldn't splash Beanstalk, since Sweeps Week is much more efficient siphon recovery in-faction. Not sure exactly what to go for instead though?

13 Oct 2015 Bigguyforyou518

@bionicsheep The problem with the -agenda point traps is twofold. Firstly, I think 9 out of 10 runners would be happier to run into a News Team or Shi.Kyū rather than a Snare!. Barring some exceptional circumstances, and weighing the fact that News Team doesn't cost the corp any credits...Snare! is just an objectively better card, hands down. It's absolutely brutal, and while there are some niche rigs that can absorb it completely (Feedback Filter + New Angeles City Hall?), it's almost always a very large tempo hit (at least).

The second problem is that they give the runner a choice, which is almost always a bad thing. It allows them to pick whichever option they can deal with easier. If they're rich as hell, and are confident they don't ever need to go fishing in archives, they might choose to take and clear the tags (or maybe they're playing tag me anyway, so they don't even care). Or maybe they have your board locked down and are running Film Critic (yes, I'm describing literally every Shaper deck), so you won't be able to Midseasons into a Psychographics score from hand. There aren't enough -point traps in the game to actually stop them from winning, so why would they care about piling them on?

Even the worst case scenario of them being at -5 points and you being at 6, there's still 12 points in your deck that they can steal (9 if you haven't scored any Global Food Initiatives).

As @UminWolf said, I would definitely drop the Shi.Kyūs at the very least (you've got 8 whole influenced locked into those). The News Teams can buy you time to win the game...but you need to actually have an end-game strategy. I would suggest either more reliable fast-advance, or a more reliable scorch package.

13 Oct 2015 UminWolf

@Bigguyforyou518: I completely agree about Snare!. That's what's really important in this game, is the tempo swings. News Team can create a decent tempo swing if they take the tags AND drop them (6 credits and 2 clicks with SYNC), but as he said, they could just not care. Which is why having game ending tag punishment becomes important (Scorched Earth).

Also, if we actually look at how you play against NBN, you hammer their R&D pretty hard to try and snipe the agendas before they draw them. So you'll probably most times give them -2 points, but that doesn't change the game state. It just means they will have to run a little longer, but if they are always in control, then it doesn't matter how long it takes them.

Real life example: My friend was running a ridiculous Iain Stirling deck using Data Dealer to always have control of the board. He won 2 games because he stole and sold enough agendas that the corp didn't have enough points in the deck to win, so he just passed his turn till they drew out. My point is that, he was perfectly willing to sacrifice agenda points to maintain control of the game, because at the end of the day, at the core of the game, the corp is the player who is pressure to score out, not the runner. The runner just has to stop you from scoring out before you deck.

13 Oct 2015 UminWolf

Don't get me wrong, I really like the deck idea. I especially love having Data Raven and Keegan Lane in the same deck. Like I said, running someone through that server into an Archer or any other destroyer is ridiculous! These are just some critiques with stated reasons as to what I would change and why (what I feel is the main purpose of this site).

13 Oct 2015 bionicsheep

@UminWolf @Bigguyforyou518 Fully understand both your perspectives, but that's not been my experience from deck testing at all. I did lose once, hard, to an Iain control deck with data dealer, NACH & film critic on the board, but I'm not particularly worried about that becoming such a dominant archetype that it becomes a regular occurence - and if it does, I guess I'll adjust.

Ironically, this deck sort of has a glacier endgame, in that it throws up ice that the runner can't deal with or afford to run through repeatedly. News Team helps with that endgame by preventing their ability to reliably hammer R&D for easy points. I've only been decked out once in 25+ games, although I do often come close, so it is a concern.

Really appreciate the critique, btw, sorry if I seem at all hostile! Think I'll probably tool around with your suggestions and see how they play out in practice as a point of comparison, especially since I want to take this to a tournament and see how it does once D&D drops officially. :)

13 Oct 2015 formerteen

How much do you find you're generally spending on a Shi.Kyū encounter? I know it varies extensively depending on the state of the game but what's a ballpark average?

14 Oct 2015 bionicsheep

@formerteen If I don't desperately need them to score it now, I'd never spend more than 3. I find 2-3 is a good number, because it puts enough hurt on them to make them really think about it - especially with the scorch threat - without making either option obviously better.

14 Oct 2015 formerteen

cool, thanks! yeah i mean it's tough because they're way too expensive at 5-6 but that's the only way to absolutely ensure they'll score it. i'll keep that in mind when i try out this build (come onnnn D&D).

are you usually flipping for the tag removal increase? that seems like the more commonly-advantageous ability.

14 Oct 2015 bionicsheep

@formerteen My finding is that people playing against this deck either work incredibly hard (often bankrupting themselves) to avoid tags - so the flip ability is redundant - or they accept tags 100% (usually in the late game) and don't install any resources, so no, it's not often worth flipping.

It's useful once in a while, and I don't think it's a bad ability, but by the point in the game I'd often rather save clicks than credits - especially since I most always want it flipped back afterwards.

14 Oct 2015 formerteen

you know, up until this point i thought that SYNC operated like Jinteki Biotech: Life Imagined and you had to flip to get either ability. i see the difference now (and that this is much, much better). my mistake 8)

16 Oct 2015 jawohl
29 Oct 2015 hi_impact

@UminWolfThat Iain Sterling deck win-condition is hilarious. Talk about maximum BM (bad manners).