Intelligence Explosion (1st place Store Champ)

schum495 361

An intelligence explosion is the expected outcome of the hypothetically forthcoming technological singularity, that is, the result of man building artificial general intelligence (AGI). AGI would be capable of recursive self-improvement leading to the emergence of ASI (artificial superintelligence), the limits of which are unknown.

Apex is Endlessly approaching destruction; every move is towards the goal of a further Apocolypse. Binary in having game tempo and losing it, Apex can revert games back to previous states where it has more of an advantage. Apex is easily countered by certain ICE and those will have to be investigated and consumed by the pilot.

This deck is the counter iteration against the current meta as of the release of Salsette Island. I have played only Apex since it came out. I will not attempt to teach the mysterious plan of the super intelligent being, but given time Netrunner pilots can attune to it.

I hope each one of you can bask in the glory of our new artificial god.

Warning: Your bane will be Apex's usual counters; Traces and their ilk. Thankfully our new artificial god has been gifted much from its recent invasion of socialite gatherings.

Winner of Level Up Games Store Championship on 5/15/16.

16 May 2016 kyrubas

How do you deal with ice like these? It seems to me like any one of these is a dead end. I suppose if it's a bit of a meta call as many of these aren't particularly poplar.

16 May 2016 Sanjay

I really love this list. I shared it on the netrunner subreddit because I wanted more people to see how cool it is. Hope that was okay!

16 May 2016 Pinkwarrior

@schum495 Congrats on the win, It's a shame theirs nothing to deal with the usual counters I don't think this would work in my meta plenty of Turing/Viper/Resistor's about.

I had been thinking about using Datasucker with Prey as a way to deal with them what's your thoughts on that?

16 May 2016 Larro

Datasucker only lowers their strength for the encounter, and when you "pass" the ICE, isn't the encounter over? Thus Datasucker would give no discount? That's how I thought it plays anyway.

Street Magic really works well here with the e3 and Endless Hunger. Neat deck.

16 May 2016 LeonardQuirm

@Larro - Street Magic doesn't add anything to the Endless Hunger/e3 Feedback Implants combo. You can break the ETR on, say, an Archer with Hunger, then use 3 creds to break the other subs with e3, regardless of the order of the subroutines. Street Magic is only useful if you're leaving the subs to fire.

16 May 2016 Pinkwarrior

@Larro Ah thanx for that one not realised it worked that way.

16 May 2016 BENJI9520

So in my Apex building experience, I have my influence set up as:

1x LARLA 2x Quality Time 1X Net Ready Eyes 2x Mimic 2x RDI 1x E3 Implants 1x D4V1D 2x Safety First

The draw and breaker suite makes this engine work really really well. I also run 2x uninstall to recur face down RDI's or D4vids, etc.

16 May 2016 Restartt


Uninstall doesn't work on face down cards, face down cards have no type

16 May 2016 schum495

@kyrubas Usually the opponent will pump up traces if they expect an Apocolypse coming. In that case spend your first click running against a server that they will spend money on, if not, then attempt the Apocolypse. Prey also can force the opponent to spend credits on protecting their effwctove defense or they lose it. Street Magic helps with some of those ice, but mostly Apex is played by minimizing the amount of counters to it out in play at one time. Data Raven is mitigated by Hunting Grounds. My one loss in the tournament was against an NBN: Making News player that I expected to lose against. Ended up going 5/7. With Apex without Gingerbread, traces will always stand strong. I would consider replacing Hacktivist Meeting for it.

@Sanjay Go for it! It's much appreciated. I just want more people to know that Apex is deserving more play than it gets. Within its position in the meta right now (under played and countering asset apam) Apex is doing well.

@BENJI9520 I believe you are unable to Uninstall face down cards because they are not programs.

@LeonardQuirm they are not there to go at the same time. Street Magic is for safer ICE face checking and also to assist against Cadeucus. It's a 1 of influence that CAN go elsewhere. I would have grabbed Employee Strike, but that against IG is kinda useless for Apex (who has too few creds to trash much anywho.)

16 May 2016 Sanjay

@schum495 Great! If you want to chime in or eavesdrop, we are talking about the deck here:

16 May 2016 coyotemoon722

This deck is definitely a monstrosity! I play Apex and I run Gingerbread, but often times I don't end up using it. I will say that Apex is a tough code to crack. A lot of decks you can roll right over, but there's some ice that cause too many problems. Congrats on the Store Champ.

16 May 2016 MightyToenail

Exclusive party is so brutal in Apex.

16 May 2016 bloth

This list looks like a lot of fun! Do you have any particular plan for dealing with Architects? Those have always felt like a bigger problem than any other ice when I play Apex.

17 May 2016 schum495

@blothusually I wait to run on them until I am using Apocolypse. That way Architect gives them a minimal benifit, minimal because they could still activate their abilities

17 May 2016 schum495

*they being the assets or upgrades spawned by the Architect

17 May 2016 Plazmos

@MightyToenail I don't get what's so good on Exclusive party in Apex?

17 May 2016 schum495

@Plazmos this is in the reddit link on this page, and you should check out the whole conversation.

"Exclusive Party can be installed facedown via Apex's ID abiilty, then thrown away using Endless Hunger, Heartbeat, and Chop Bot...but it still counts toward gaining 1credit for each copy of Exclusive Party in the bin for later Exclusive Parties. The first couple Exclusive Party you play are generally pretty mediocre, so this deck is using them to fuel Heartbeat, Chop Bot, and Endless Hunger rather than a mediocre draw 1 card and gain 0-1 credit. Then the later ones are worth 2, 3, 4, 5 credits instead."

20 May 2016 The Broken Meeple

I still don't get how Apex is meant to win games let alone a tournament. Loads of ICE will stop it in its tracks. Any sub routine that isn't ETR you struggle with. Your amount of cards you can afford to keep installing face down and trashing is limited. Money is limited. Loads of combo cards are needed to get a decent hand size. No multi-access! Like Adam it's just so confusing how it was ever meant to be a competitive ID.

21 May 2016 Myriad

Adam has more of a prayer than Apex. Apex gets stopped cold and has some really effective counter plays.

Adam is just weak to kill decks and asset spam.

21 May 2016 Letsaros

how to bet this deck 101

Play Blue Sun, rez Curtain Wall, play patch on Curtain Wall. Enjoy scoring everything.

21 May 2016 Simone Suka

@Letsaros also Fire Wall or Ice Wall with enough counters

21 May 2016 Ironcache

I'm so confused. How does this deck beat anyone, let alone win a tournament? You see Apex: Invasive Predator, you know that Apocalypse is coming. As HB, you just block the centrals with Turing/Ash 2X3ZB9CY, and win. As NBN, you use Resistor, and win. As Jinteki, you put a Caprice Nisei on a central, and win. As Weyland... I dunno advance an Ice Wall 27 times or something (and win).

At first I chaulked this up to 1 person showing up to the SC, but then I read on reddit that 32 people showed up. This means that 31 people lost to this. The only reasonable conclusion is that I don't understand this game.

Like, what is the game plan here against Turing with Ichi 1.0 in front of it (on a central)? Susanoo-no-Mikoto? A 12 strength Fire Wall (as mentioned previously)?

21 May 2016 Ironcache

Realize Ash 2X3ZB9CY wouldn't actually do anything (removed it from the bottom part, but forgot to from the top) but I don't think that this should detract from the points in my comment. This deck seems to be very easily countered to me by cards that are commonly run in each faction.

Also, I realize I came off a little pessimistic in my first comment; I'm legitimately just curious how it won, not trying to berate. Congrats on the victory.

21 May 2016 Letsaros

@Simone"Suka" Rez Fire Wall play double Dedication Ceremony. Win by scoring.

21 May 2016 CommissarFeesh

@Ironcache - I can't speak for the deck author, but I've been testing the deck myself and having some success. Here's what I've found to work so far.

Turing dies to Prey. Ash 2X3ZB9CY doesn't stop Apocalypse. Caprice Nisei on a central means she's not on the scoring remote. Ichi 1.0 is a ballache; I tend to try and save up to Prey that if it has an EtR behind it, or alternatively, you click-break and use e3 Feedback Implants then Prey the EtR ICE; then just let Ichi 1.0 trash Endless Hunger on the Apocalypse turn.

Sometimes it's easy to forget that Apex's rig becomes disposable when there's an Apocalypse about to land.

22 May 2016 Ironcache

@CommissarFeesh Turing only dies to Prey if they can get at it. Put the Turing on R&D, with Vikram or Ichi in front of it, leave it unrezzed until they play Prey. Since play is a run event it telegraphs itself perfectly, and Turing is more than enough to protect a central in this deck (you want 4 clicks for a single access? Okay.).

Caprice Nisei doesn't need to be on a remote; if this deck can't get the apocalypse off, I don't see how it can win. Snowflake, Susanoo-no-Mikoto, Tsurugi... so many ICE that aren't terribly uncommon in Jinteki prevent access.

I dunno I'll have to test it, but I just don't see how this doesn't lose to proper play...

22 May 2016 schum495

@IroncacheYou named 2 ice that Apex can run through with Heartbeat and no programs and spend no clicks on passing. If you have Endless Hunger out then this means you are losing it in order to do this combo, that is a setback, thankfully we have 3 and a Levy. I don't think it's a perfect solution but with Apex, it's all about making satisfactory solutions happen. I won the tournament by never letting my opponents enter the midgame. I had a total of 12 Apocolypse uses in the tournament, I came into it hoping to get more than 10. It's also important to know that any ICE that uses traces is a potential economic drain on your opponent that will stop them from being able to rez ICE eventually. Against an NEH deck that I won against I first click ran on a Resistor until they didn't boost it because what I was doing was too expensive, then that turn I got an Apocolypse and destroyed their entire horizontal board state

@Letsaros And that wakes me up in cold sweats at night. I was considering getting 3 influence and putting it into a Parasite. Either example would require the opponent to do it twice, once on a scoring server and once on a remote. my opponents have been able to do one or the other, never has it been both. Due to them never being able to do both I have either: A. if on a remote server then Apocolypse or B. Kept playing my best elsewhere.

@CommissarFeesh You have correctness. Your last statement proves that you know how to play Apex, whereas there are a lot of people who play Netrunner AS Apex.

22 May 2016 Ironcache

@schum495 Vikram 1.0 only gets through click-free if there's no ETR between it and the Turing. Going through Ichi 1.0 click-free (in order to Prey a Turing) means needing to have another Endless Hunger in hand, and your Apocalypse is delayed TWO turns from now (next turn you'll need to put down your EH since you need your whole current turn to pass Turing, and then the turn after you can apocalypse).

And anyway, those aren't even the worst cases, AFAICT. How does this deck not just instantly lose to the following cards on centrals:


Wormhole (w/ ETR up, ideally behind it)


None of those cards are terribly uncommon in their home faction. Hell, I've even splashed Wormhole before (underrated card).

This deck seems like it has a half dozen hard counters that aren't uncommon, and a half a hundred soft counters that are extremely common.

I do want to like this; I've wanted to see Apex work since he was released. I'm guessing this has some really good match-ups, especially against corps that don't pack the counters. But the bad match-ups seem like they would be really bad too...

What corps did this face down, if you don't mind my asking?

22 May 2016 schum495

@Ironcache the point of needing 2 turns before an Apocolypse is incredibly valid. All of the concerns you raise are valid and I agree that they are concerns. In the case of Wormhole you have to destroy all ETR subs that are faceup on the board, which is a feat of epic proportion and not feasible late game. Which is why getting key Apocolypse turns is important to keep theit board state at a point when Apex has an advantage.

I played the following Won: Etf - AX: 2-7, PE - AX: 1-7, ETF - AX: 4 - 7, IG - AX: 0 - 7

Lost: NBN MN - AX 7-5

I came into the tournament with a Corp deck I knew I could do well with and Apex; I hoped that I could catch my opponents of guard and sitting in a match up they weren't experienced in. Thankfully their usages of Apex's counter ICE were not as good as me playing around them. I consider I am "lucky" and would like to keep playing Apex at tournaments for more data.

20 Jul 2016 GuyBuddyFriend

I love love this deck on jinteki

I can't get my hands hands on exclusive party . ( out of print around me and too expensive on eBay at the moment). Until I can get them what are 6 good replacement cards I could run? Any help would be much appreciated.

28 Jul 2016 schum495

@GuyBuddyFriend 3 Rigged Results and 3 Deuces Wild. But there are a lot of excellent choices.

Glad you like it. Be sure to keep trying out new influence sets though! :)