NBN: Making Improved Glaciers (NAPD MWL legal)

Krams 817

Old deck, revisited. Any comments welcome :)

Deck Development

This deck once was called Improved Bioroids, but after my latest restructure of the ICE suite and the influence spread, it mearly has 4 bioroid tracer ICE left to be improved.
This deck was always meant as a slow glacier with heavily defended servers and very taxing tracer ICE. But originally, it had means to fast avance out stuff when needed. Long before the NAPD Most Wanted List was published, I tried to move this deck away from fast advance to make the core glacier concept even stronger. But it didn't work out. I published a v2 with much less FA that struggled harder early game and had no backup for late game because it lacked FA. All in all, it was worse. Then I made a v2.1 that never got published although I've put a lot into it. It really no means of FA and turned out to be even clumsier than the v2. I've reached a dead end with the development of this deck.
And then, NAPD MWL happend. I took out the original version and started from scratch, yet again turning it into a no FA version. When I had reworked the agenda suite, influence spread and ICE suite, smoothed out the deck and removed anything that seemed unnecessary the deck had 19 agenda points and 45 cards. To fill it up, I added The Future is Now, Fast Track, Freelancer and Interns as 1-ofs. I made some testplays and the cards seemed useful. All in all, the deck performed pretty well and I'm glad the transition of my improved bioroids to the NAPD MWL meta went so smoothly.


The deck usually runs with a single remote server and heavy defences on all servers. The remote is used as Melange shell and scoring remote, alternately. Though from time to time, Jackson can go in there as well, sepecially if you want the runner to run there and waste resources.
If possible, Improved Tracers gets scored early and often. Fast Track and The Future is Now can be used to tutor it up if there's a scoring window. Every copy that gets scored makes every ICE in the deck more taxing. Layers of 3 ICE with strength 7+ are quite common on the remote.
Once you have a Surveillance Sweep in hand and the runner isn't immediately threatening a steal (like a wide open R&D or an agenda flooded HQ), play it! Everthing is better with Surveillance Sweep out.


The deck is usually very rich and can afford to stack many ICE, rez them all and still have money left to make traces scary. Typically, the runner will try to not let any trace fire. That's okay. If they never fire, that means that the runner has broken your ICE, which usually doesn't come cheap with this ICE suite!

  • Sweeps Week iss always nice, even when you just get the net gain of a Beanstalk Royalties.
  • Hedge Fund is Hedge Fund.
  • Restructure works good in this deck, I rarely have trouble playing it.
  • Melange Mining Corp. can get out of hand quickly and print endless money if the runner doesn't run it. And if (s)he does, it's a pretty nice tax when your remote is set up. It combos nicely with Resctructure.

Agenda Suite

The original version had AstroScript Pilot Program, the no FA version had NAPD Contract. With the new MWL, I tried to avoid both.

  • Improved Tracers is the backbone of the deck and needs to be a 3-of.
  • GFI helps greatly in reducing the agenda density and forcing the runner to steal 4 (or more) agendas to win. It's well worth it's influence.
  • Project Beale can be never-advanced out as a 2-pointer or scored as a 5/3, just as needed. Always a solid choice.
  • 15 Minutes is just awesome.
  • That leaves us with 19 agena points and nothing else to put in. I opted for The Future is Now for tutoring, but might as well take Breaking News or any other 1-pointer.

ICE Choices

All in all, this deck has fewer ICE than most of my other glacier decks. The goal isn't to rush out 3 layers of cheap stuff in front of every server, but to make each single ICE a tax that matters.
Curently, the greatest problem is runners clicking through the bioroid ICE, which are supposed to be taxing. Currently, my answer to this is just stacking them on the same server.

  • Resistor can tax runners that float too many tags, which helps against Account Siphon spamming. The 0 rez cost means that you can even rez it directly after the Siphon landed and at least have any defense. Other than that, it's just a simple ETR ICE that forces the runner to have anything out that can break a barrier. Though, from time to time I like to install a Resistor as innermost ICE on a server and stack 2-3 Turnpikes on top of it. The combo is quite taxing for their rez cost.
  • Turnpike over Gutenberg is just my personal preference. To me, Gutenberg always feels a bit wasted on any other server than R&D. And I want to be able to ICE up servers as the situation calls for. And yes, I am aware that Mimic is a thing, but I still think Turnpike is a better Hunter.
  • Archangel is often kept in HQ as ambush, especially when Gang Sign hits the table.

Cards that didn't make it in the deck

Let's talk about Rutherford Grid. Great card. 0 to rez, can be faked as Melange/Agenda and strengthens those traces. The ones that usually don't fire, because the runner will break them. All. Don't get me wrong, I still like it, but not without it's combo cards that make it great.

  • TMI isn't as bad as it's reputation. NBN: Making News can rez it relatively good, especially on a Rutherford server. But it doesn't work with Improved Tracers and Resistor has better synergy with the rest of the ICE suite.
  • Ash 2X3ZB9CY is an obvious choie for any glacier, so why is he missing here? Well, I felt like he doesn't bring enough to justify his influence cost. He's an absurd tax in any Rutherford server!
  • Troll is awesome. Often overlooked, but actually one of the best NBN ICE. He can support the bioroid ICE by taking away s when placed in front of them or - even better - end the run after the runner has spent all of his s to pass them. But this deck only has 4 bioroids and I don't want to invest too much in positional ICE combos when I can't get them to be consistent. Viper has to be enough tax.
    Another thing to note about Troll is that while he sadly doesn't gain anything from a scored Improved Tracers, he is brutal in a Rutherford server. (Or a Heinlein sever, but now we're talking about a whole different deck.)
4 Jan 2016 Pinkwarrior

@Krams Have you thought about trying this with New Angeles Sol: Your News seems like the choice of current would allow it to work their as you wouldn't need the trace credits as much then. You could also get in News Hound then which is crazy good. Not that It doesn't look good here either mind looks like an interesting deck idea.

4 Jan 2016 Corence

I feel like you could drop 1x Viktor 2.0 for a Tollbooth and use the influence to add in Astros or SSCG. NBN already has many of the best Code Gates in the game so it seems a bit of a shame to be spending 8 influence on them.

SSCG forces runs on your Glacier server even if there isn't an agenda in there, and everything except GFI can be scored out of hand. If they don't trash it, you fast advance. If they do, you can likely score traditionally since they'll be poor.

4 Jan 2016 Krams

@Pinkwarrior Interesting idea. Sol could make the current more consistent and News Hound would add much needed cheap hard ETR. But I already have a lot of strength 4 ICE and Atman is a thing, so I'd need to replace Viper and/or Ichi. Maybe even go more towards tagging and tag punishing ICE? I don't know... Could be a cool variant. I'lll give it some more thought.

4 Jan 2016 Krams

@Corence Yea, having an incentive for the runner to run the remote seems like a good idea, so I guess making another version with SanSan City Grid is worth a try.
Viktor 2.0 is in the deck because he is a tracer and a hard ETR, but I guess there are influence cheaper options to keep the runner out ;)

5 Jan 2016 Pinkwarrior

@Krams yeah Atman is definitely something to be wary of, If you do go more taggy or tag punishment their is Keegan Lane to think about 2 he's definitely worth running from what I've played of him sure you remove the tag but they were going to do that anyway them self.

5 Jan 2016 moistloaf

Current ICE suite is startlingly porous, with only 1 ETR - Mother Goddess. These Bioroids and Archangel is effectively blank until the Runner installs something. How are you defending Melange?

6 Jan 2016 Krams

@moistloaf with Viper, Viktor 2.0 or Resistor. Passing a Resistor against NBN: Making News by beating the trace is a ridiculous tax, so the runner will need to get his Corroder out. But then, Archangel and Ichi 1.0 aren't blank anymore.
I admit, I do have problems with my early stopping power. If the runner can apply pressure fast and hard, I often struggle to get either the first Melange use or the first scored Improved Tracers. This is a slow deck in a meta full of fast enemies and sometimes it can collapse if the runner gets ahead too fast.
But most of the times I reach the turning point where runs are getting really expensive and the runner is forced to slow down.