From One, An Army (GRex SC 1st Place)

IonFox 1167

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Designed by Singapore National Champion @burdle.jai and inspired by the deck created by @josh01, this is the deck I sleeved the night before store champs, which eventually carried me to victory. On the day itself, this deck went 5-0, helping shore up the 2 games DLR Andy dropped. And in most cases, the scoring remote and even centrals sometimes would stand nigh impenetrable with only a single piece of rezzed ICE.

The Build

I'm not going to waste too much time here, so basically, this is a fairly straightforward Palana Glacier build, but with a few spicy includes for the meta, which I will explain below.

Clone Retirement

Now, it's no secret that Jinteki's glacier plan got screwed over by Rumor Mill. Hard. Before @Josh01 came up with this idea, people were slotting in 3 Scarcity of Resources just to have a chance to score out. Enter Clone Retirement. This great include serves quite a few functions in this deck. First, if someone decides to drop a Rumor Mill to contest the remote, we can just spend 1 turn and 2 credits to say nope. Secondly, if Blackmail-En Passant Valencia happens to be rearing its head, scoring one of these early forces them to dig for DDoS, and any server with at least 2 ICE becomes a headache for them. Thirdly, sometimes you just end up at 6 points and ending with a The Future Perfect is pretty risky. However, now we can just dig for a single copy of this and roll out the GGEZ. Lastly, it's the best fodder for Archer (will go into more detail later).

Mumbad City Grid

The MVP. The Bad Boy. The hot, new spiciness which single-handedly carried this deck to victory every single game. If there's one thing Jinteki does well, it's ICE which is both taxing and painful. Now the only thing that hurts going through said ICE, is going through it again. And again. And again. The fact that this gives Rumor Mill the finger, and can go on multiple servers just further adds on to its value. Lastly, it's synergy with our ICE suite is amazing. Paying 15 credits with Paperclip to go through a Galahad 3 times. Forcing criminals to jack out simply because they are fed up with your army of one Lancelot taxing their Mongoose more and more. Honestly, this card is so good that I can't even put it into words. Try it.

The Hottest ICE

Even when Palana just came out, people were trying out Grail in it, and finding some reasonable success. The value of Grail ICE just gets even better in this build, as Mumbad City Grid means that your grail ICE just got so much more taxing and painful. Now, each server can function with as little as 1 piece of ICE, meaning you can hold more of them in hand, and they just get up to 2 more subs every time you move them down. This might not seem like much, but it adds up real fast. It also feels real good when that single Galahad ends up with the subs of 4-5 different pieces of ICE and locks them out.

Now, on to one of the more interesting/fun choices. Archer. It's actually rather simple when we think about it. What sucks more than Tollbooth? Archer. What sucks more than Archer? Multiple archer encounters just by rezzing one (thanks MCG!). This card is also easier to slot since we also aren't too sad about throwing away clone retirements rather than a 2 pointer. It pulls it weight, and once you got one on a remote, you can be pretty sure no one will get in again.

To end this section, I’ll just say that every card in the list pretty much is worth the slot, but if you really want to swap something out, I would recommend starting with the Subliminal Messaging. Possiblities include: Interns, Best Defense, Foxfire, Excalibur and probably a few more which I can’t think of right now.

The Game Plan

Once again, this is rather simple as it follows closely to most other Palana glacier decks. Make money, shore up you centrals early, then slowly build up an impenetrable remote with some Grail or an Archer with a grid and a Caprice Nisei and/or Marcus Batty. Scoring a Corporate Sales Team or Nisei MK II is always preferred, but an early Clone Retirement is always nice as it immediately turns on your Archers. That being said, it's also helpful to hold onto a spare or a current if you suspect a Rumor Mill, as it still sucks and sometimes people are just crazy enough to pay through a Mumbad server.

Tournament Report

Swiss 1 vs YQ (Siege Engine Geist)

He gets out 2 Tech Traders Early meaning money won't really be an issue, and he quickly assembles a respectable suite of disposable breakers. I manage to push out a Nisei Mk 2 behind a pair of unrezzed ICE and an upgrade, which he doesn't contest as he can't find a 6th breaker (smart move, the front ICE was a DNA Tracker). I then find a grid and drop it into the remote, along with a Lancelot on top. He does manage to get past all the remote ICE once by burning 3 shivs and using a mongoose to break Lancelot a 3rd time, but I just boot him using the nisei token. He later manages to find a sales team on top of R&D, but he can't stop me from simply scoring out behind the single Lancelot after he goes broke. 1-0

Swiss 2 vs Myer (DamonFork Whizz)

I follow the game plan as usual, but decide to beef up my centrals a bit more to slow down sucker token farming. Here, I get a lucky break as he continues to face a Galahad, but gets surprised 3 Merlin subs (hid the second Merlin until he faced Galahad a second time), but only 2 cards in hands, and ends up flatlined. This was my only flatline the whole day. 2-0

Swiss 3 vs Derek (Angry Val)

Having faced the horror of these builds often online, I'm mentally bracing myself for the trial ahead. Thankfully, I mull into a hand with an enigma, some econ, and a Clone retirement. Taking my chances, I draw a card, drop the enigma over HQ and play a hedge. He thankfully does not have the tools to siphon me, but does find a Future Perfect on top which he steals. I immediately then rush out the Clone Retirement, and from that point on, I just sit back and build up my defenses. Without Blackmail, he is unable to threaten the remote, and while he does get off a successful double siphon, I am able to bounce back easily with subliminal messaging and a celebrity gift. This was perhaps the only game where Mumbad City Grid did not play a large role in winning. 3-0

Swiss 4 vs Nic Tan (Andy?)

I am offered an ID here, and seeing as I'm safe with my current record, decide to take it and use the downtime to grab a snack and some fresh air. End up being 1st seed after Swiss. I'll count it as 4-0 (due to the game below).

Elims 1 vs Nic Tan (Takeshi's Castle Andy)

I spy a familiar face in the first elimination round. I am really not confident of DLR Andy's chances against his rushy HB, so I choose to corp vs his Andromeda, and pray it's not DLR. When he drops a Desperado and Power Tap, I sigh as I recognise the castle build, and proceed to ICE up and create the remote from hell. I bait his Femme onto a Lancelot on the remote, and he manges to get in cheap once (since Femme fires before Grail), but thankfully is forced out by Caprice. Then, I proceed to install a fresh piece of ICE over the Lancelot. So, it turns out that when your only killers are Mongoose and Femme, breaking an Archer sucks. A triple formation of Archers? Basically impossible, with Caprice and Batty standing by. From there, it's pretty much smooth sailing as I score out with a Future Perfect, despite him finding an agenda or two in R&D. 5-0

And that's that. DLR Andy managed to pick it up from there, and I got my first ever SC victory.

To conclude, I feel that this is an extremely fun and powerful deck, which is capable of going toe to toe with a lot of the popular runners right now. So if you're looking for some solid Red glacier that can still do well despite Rumor Mill, try sleeving this up, and create your own One Man Army server. Any feedback, thoughts and opinions are welcome. Good hunting, everyone! ^.^

23 Dec 2016 EnderA

I tried to get Mumbad City Grid to work for a while - Grail RP, Blue Sun (What, you don't want to break Orion 4 times in a row? Let me just reset it back to the front for you...), what have you. Looks like Rumor Mill slaughtering glacier was what it really needed. Let everyone's guard down.

Gratz on the wins!

23 Dec 2016 percomis

Interesting that you're saying Citadel DLR is a bad matchup, can't you just rush out behind 2-3 pieces of cheap ICE with a Caprice?

23 Dec 2016 IonFox

@percomis Well just from my experience, every DLR build I've seen has just set up super fast with little time for me to get going. Or maybe I just play this too slow :p

@EnderA Thanks!

23 Dec 2016 Evilpyro24

I've run Mumbad City Grid out of the Foundry to varied amounts of success. Have you considered slotting a Komainu for the potential flatline? As with Brainstorm, the subroutines stack up. Encountering it three times means a LOT of net damage. Of course, GS Shrike M2 laughs in the face of that many subroutines, which is an issue. It could be worth asking for some help from your friendly neighbourhood Corporate Troubleshooter.

23 Dec 2016 Pantacruel

So i'm thinking of trying Midori as a one of to go on the scording Remote. In the only couple of games I played, I faced anarch on Parasite.

I think Midori would be fun because you could keep an Archerin hand plus 2 Grail Ice. On your scoring remote with a 2 ice deep, depending on what breakers they have you could switch in the most painfull/costly grail ice, or go for the double Archer.

What's your thoughts on this?

And congrats on the build.

23 Dec 2016 Benjen

Correct me if I'm wrong here, but if I hit a Lancelot with a mongoose and then you make me encounter that Lancelot again with Mumbad City Grid, I am still using Mongoose to break the "1 ice per run" because it is the same piece of ice.

23 Dec 2016 Sanjay

@Benjen I don't think there is a ruling on this specifically, but Damon has ruled on Cell Portal and Mongoose, and that ruling would suggest you are right... you can use Mongoose each time you encounter the same ice.

23 Dec 2016 IonFox

@Evilpyro24 Every time, you swap ICE, the runner has the option to jack out, so it is relativrly easy for them to avoid the flatline. They can also run with fewer cards un hand to mitigate komainu's cost.

@Benjen You are correct, mongoose can still be used. However, it is still 8 credits per Archer, and 4, 5 then 6 credits for Lancelot, which especially hurts when Batty and Caprice are still in the server, as the costs will quickly add up.

@Pantacruel Midori could work, main issue is slots are tight, and the ICE goes in unrezzed. However, the case with parasite is definitely worth considering.

24 Dec 2016 Seriousigg

Glad to see that people haven't given up on Palana and grail ICE especially after it had served me well :-). How do you usually play the Scarcity of Resources current? Whenever it arrives, save it for the Rumor Mill or try draw out Rumor Mill before it wrecks the Caprice Nisei and Marcus Batty?

I think Komainu does have a place in this deck but to make the Mumbad City Grid remote really taxing rather than an attempted flatline. If a runner does get round it by running with fewer cards in hand then you don't have to move the ICE. Need to be very braved to continue although I would love to make space for a Snare! or three.

25 Dec 2016 Nathan 0

I dunno - maybe you guys are facing different stuff than me, but this deck has way too little ice to deal with the amount of dedicated anarch ice destruction I see. Feels like an auto-loss against any standard Whizzard deck.

27 Dec 2016 c-hung

Do you find Voter Intimidation to be very necessary?

27 Dec 2016 Abstract

Would you consider swapping some of the Grail ICE for Excalibur to make room for Friends in High Places? Or did you ever feel a need for that card? I like the look of this a lot, thanks for posting!

28 Dec 2016 IonFox

@c-hung Voter came in helpful, trashing things like beth, wyldside and a hades shard. It's probably jot necessary, but nice to have. Switch it if you feel something else is better in the slot.

@Abstract I actually did not see the need for friends that day, but I also did not face much ICE destruction. I feel that if one were to mive away from the grail suite, or drop archers, then friends would be an excellent include to recur defensive upgrades and any trashed ICE.

2 Jan 2017 EnderA

Have you considered Quicksand? Combined with Mumbad City Grid it can become quite a beast very quickly.

5 Jan 2017 evilgaz

ICE destruction is big these days, how do you cope with Parasites and cutlery decks?

8 Jan 2017 IonFox

@evilgazOk I'll be honest here. Ice destruction sucks. With the spoiled new anarch console resulting in an even greater focus on ICE destruction, the current list simply won't suffice.

I intend to probably start by dropping the grail suite and exploring alternative, influence free options, that can fulfill the same role. This is so I can hopefully slot 2, maybe even 3 friends, and perhaps interns. It'll be rough, and I'm honestly not sure how things will go.