NA Champs Top 16 - 8/6/2016 - Birdbath - PDX Burns the World

bluebird503 1966

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TLDR: Some People Just Want to Watch The World Burn

Birdbath - for "Bluebird's Tubs" - name by @saan

The second that MWL 2 hit I saw a a lot of players hailing the end of asset spam. Heritage Committee had been hit hard by the changes, only being able to use museum of history once per turn is not easy, you lose some influence due to Mumba Temple. I had just come off of a win with Dan's Hot Tubs in Vancouver, BC regionals and had felt the deck was powerful to warrant full on banning of some of its pieces. I immediately began testing variations of Hot Tubs online starting from a starting point of the previous list. Once I began testing this with HHN and getting free/easy wins.. I never really intended to play anything else at gencon. It was winning too easily and I knew something was here and I also thought it might be a bit under the radar. Splash Hate from CTM worried me but not enough to get off of the list.

My starting list was virtually a stripped down hot tubs removing all of the jinteki influence from Tubs and trying the deck from that point. I also added Hard Hitting News alongside Sea Source. I quickly found that people would let me HHN them all the time; at the beginning of my testing. I almost never wanted to use Sea Source. HHN was allowing me to keep any resource based decks down so much that winning was a foregone conclusion despite the lack of a lot of Tubs old resources. While the deck's power level was hit; HHN was making up for a lot of its new weaknesses.

Here was my decks original influence package.. I had about 7-8 iterations tested with at least 3 games each after this. 3 Mumba Temple 3 Jackson Howard 2 Turtlebacks 1 Clone Suffrage 1 HHN 1 DBS 1 Sea Source

From there I decided I wanted heritage committee back in the list. I was running out of assets to spam and I was becoming flooded in the hand especially. At this point the turtlebacks came out. Heritage Com was actually fine you would just use it and then next click use MCH again. The real issue with Heritage Com came from the fact that you could only museum it back so often due to the new unique rule on Museum. At this point in time with no turtlebacks I realized that real $ was my problem, it would be my problem all the way into the event; I think my use of only 2 pad campaign was probably incorrect.

From here the list was refined and edited. I decided sea source was not needed, I moved closer to a traditional hot tubs list. And the list I had at this point in time was basically Hot Tubs with lots of tech cards. I tried Stock Union Exchange and other various cards for a time but they did not work out for me. Also consulting visit for subliminal is just way too cute haha. I considered third scorched earth to make it easier to work through plascretes and such. At some point I try Senseis Actor Union instead of heritage. This really changed a lot of things for me.. as I quickly found Senseis to be the best card in the deck. I really wish there was an easy way to protect it naked in faction for weyland because I think it would be insane; However I didn't really have a way to do it. At some point I discuss a bit with @simpleton because he had posted in slack about a tubs list. I see what direction he has gone and compare some of his card choices with my own. Ultimately I don't go so far into the direction he has ventured and stick more with my kill plan, but this helped me a bit. I tell Dan a bit about my list and the success I had been having but he wasn't really buying it :P. A lot of Estrikes show up in whizzards so I add paywall over a 2nd consulting visit in order to deal better with these whizzards. My win rate against non whizzard was insane anyways.

I settled on a list before taking off to Gencon... on the way to Chicago on the plane I brainstormed while a Toddler kicked the back of my seat. I had cut Hostile Infrastructures in and out repeatedly throughout testing but I knew that once I had tagged my opponent, there was little incentive for them to stop running and trashing my tools; especially the tutoring and recursion tools for scorched earth. Closed accounts had been on the back of my mind for ages ever since discussing with @ossa when he tried the deck out. But... Dedicated Response Team could also serve a similar purpose without the need for cutting a mumba temple. The last minute inclusion of DRT over Pad Campaign was confirmed.. except I brought most of my playable cards and didn't deem DRT playable for some reason. I messaged @forktines during my layover and asked him to bring DRTs for me :D.

One of the funniest/saddest parts depending on who you are was the lead up to gencon. There was a lot of discussion about new MWL2 and how healthy it is and the removal of these filthy museum decks. Meanwhile I'm crushing with Public Enemy #1. The Team Covenant video and comments are especially interesting. Thanks for all the hard work you guys do but going to respectfully disagree MWL2 solved museum. (However future cards coming out are a problem for museum lists as discussed later)

The actual Gencon event was a blast. I played against a lot of amazing and awesome opponents. I am so happy that I got to meet all of you. I don't remember everyone but Claudia was a fun opponent. She was from the Phillipines and we had a friendly match(well as friendly as my decks would allow). She didn't like my ANRPC dice so I used her ANR credits as well... but they don't use fives. Thankfully she allowed me to use dice to represent fives during the gag game because sandburg was in full effect that game.

My other games were great as well. My games against the world champion involved a hunt for decent food/coffee which ended in failure as we chose to ID the round. @simpleton @foilflaws @samrs @simonmoon were all played against, quite an assortment of strong opponents. My final round was one of my most gracious of opponents as we played for 9th place. I believe their name was Dan and we had some fun. I had a turn 2 loss with Tubs to single accesses that cemented my fate outside of the top 8 but then we played some fun games.

The after party was a blast and I brought my brother along and we had a great time. Gencon 2016 was some of the most fun I've ever had and I'm really happy for all the memories :D.

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The success of this list is not quite what we wanted.. we did not succeed in putting up a victory or a top 4 finish or even top 8 finish. The list did do well though. Two of us piloted virtually the same 54 cards at Gencon which had 230+ players. Both Alex and I finished in striking distance of the cut of the North American Championships barely missing out on the cut. I believe I had the highest SoS other than Dan, having played against four players that made the top 8 of the event. Alex Black had not played constructed netrunner in almost a year and was handed the decks blind; never before playing a museum deck even. He also had an insane finish in the top 18 or somewhere around there. (I'll update later with exact standings but don't have a picture of adjusted standings and am waiting patiently for FFG)

In UK Nationals with 155 players; Yoshi (Peter) and Simpleton (Jason) took variations of my gencon list with a few cuts and additions to top 16 and 23rd place respectively. Yoshi only lost one game with the deck and it was sadly in the cut. Watching the banter on the stream was quite hilarious. "How do you beat this thing?" asks Yoshis opponent. Yoshi sadly had no idea :D.

25-8 for a 75% win percentage between the four of us at national championships is not bad. This is a bit worse than the testing win percentage I had but some of that can be accounted for variance/user error.

The variant that I suggested for UK Nationals was cutting the DRT and Mumba Temple for Pad Campaign and Closed Accounts. Both players played something very close to that with a few personal changes of their own.

Going forward: I think that Temujin Contracts and Rumor Mill are both extremely good tools against this deck. Boom is interesting because of its ability to close out games so quickly, needing a bit more work to keep two tags on your opponent.

Special thanks to: @Ossa for being a great travel companion and for crushing Gencon. Your first big event and you crushed it. Thanks to @forktines and Alex Black and Tyler and Josh for making the event so awesome And my testing mates @grogboxer and @Saan from the PNW that let me play against their whizzards with tubs... over and over and over again. Sorry guys :D.

3 comments
14 Aug 2016 grogboxer

Congratulations with this deck! This is a lot more fair than the pre-MWL2 version, in my opinion. :) Euro game board-building decks are the best

14 Aug 2016 djc6535

so... how does the deck play? It seems like a tag & bag, but there are only 2 tagging cards? Is the whole point to keep cycling HHN and zelaous judge until you can double scorch?

14 Aug 2016 bluebird503

@djc6535, yes you only have 1 way to land a tag on your opponent. However, Mumbad City Hall and Consulting Visit give you the ability to HHN at will. Clone Suffrage/Museum/Asset Tutors make sure the options are in the right place. Judge makes sure your opponent can't simply clear 4 tags on their turn and be okay. The kill is not as simple as sea source scorch scorch usually you land tags and then just set up a kill while trashing resources and securing your board. Eventually you flatline your opponent.