Axeidents Happen (Top 8 US Nationals, 3rd After Swiss)

podoboyz99 2252

Glass shop again

This is the Skorpios Defense Systems deck that I piloted to 7th/8th place at US Nationals at ETX on 6/4/17 along with a Whizzard deck you can find here. A little backstory before I get into the actual deck.

So at Seattle regionals two weeks before I had been rused into playing a Skorpios deck by my friend Stephen (@pandapersona) and finished a disappointing 10th place, missing the cut because my deck wasn't good. It was some batty rig shooter shenanigans with MCA Informant and Voter Intimidation. I then proceeded to play good decks next weekend (SpagsWhizz and Moons) at BC regionals, and ended up getting 4th. Two days before nationals @pandapersona and @CJFM sent me this deck, and I rolled my eyes at it. After some testing and input from yours truly, it evolved to be the beast you see before you. When I rolled up to nationals with a Skorpios deck in my bag, I got yelled at by a bunch of really good players to audible out of it at the last minute, but they were wrong.

The Deck:

This deck is an absolute monster. It will dismantle the runner in a way that has never been done before, and it will win you a lot of games. The deck went 5-1 on the day, the only losing game too a bad matchup on stream in the cut. The gameplan is simple. Stop your opponent from getting into servers with barriers, then they can't win while this is happening. Fortunately for them, they usually have a way to break barrier subroutines in their deck. Unfortunately for them, you will promptly remove them from the game. Doing all this while rushing agendas makes it very hard for the runner to win. Some cards are obviously good (like Hunter Seeker), but I’ll get into some of the weird ones in a moment.

The Cards:

Hatchet Job: This card is absolutely ridiculous in this deck. Comboed with Salem's you can exile any breaker in the game without any interaction at all, you just need a money lead, no runs necessary. Gets through Sac Con and Fall Guy, and is just a bonkers high trace. The trash cost downside is mitigated, because the only time where they are accessing cards is if they have their fracture installed, and when that happens you just play this card.

Salem's Hospitality: The second part to your two card combo. If you have multiples in hand you can just blind Salem’s for problem cards. This play is what makes the deck so threatening. Its very hard for the runner to make a correct play involving dancing around just Salem's or Hatchet and Salem’s.

Ark Lockdown: Who would be dumb enough to play Ark Lockdown in Skorpios? You’ve already covered the niche! The earlier versions of this deck didn't have lockdown but I lobbied hard for it, and it ended up being insanely good. This is for all the times people decide to play around Skorp by playing multiple siphons in a turn, or by discarding their Paperclip.

Crisium Grid: Crisium ended up being the best meta call ever for this tournament, which was plagued with Siphons, Keyholes, Indexings, Deep Data Minings, and Apocalypses. I wish I could fit in a third but the deck is so tight I couldn't decide what to cut.

14 Barriers???: You need to ensure a complete lock once you do all that work of removing their fracter from the game. If you remove their fracters from the game and you just need an ice to cover RnD from their dig and the only ice you can draw is that one Enigma that you thought was a good idea to put in to make them install their decoder it’s actually terrible. Because of the decks ice suite, you only have to focus on one thing only, the fracter. A Swordsman instead of a Wraparound I would be more open too, because Eater decks can give you some trouble. I literally picked the cheapest barriers I could find and slapped them in here.

The Matchups:

Bad: Siphon whizz can give you a lot of trouble because they don't trigger Hunter Seeker often due to all the Keyholes and 2 Crisium isn't enough even in a 44 card deck. You also have 4 breakers you must remove (the 3 Eaters and the Clip) so your matchup isn't good, but it also isn't unwinnable. Rushing is very good vs this style of deck once you have HQ locked down. Shaper Mopus would be an issue if it was at all prevalent, but luckily it isn't. Any Brahman deck is actually insane, but only if they know what you are doing.

Good: Both Frantic Whizz and Frantic Maxx are good matchups because you can randomly remove their breakers and that's just a free win. Otherwise you may have to put pressure on early and get them to not Mopus up too much. Reg andy is good because you can stuff them pretty hard early with all the ETR’s and their econ is based off getting into servers.

Absolutely Insane: Every other deck in the meta. Hayley lock and the new SF Apoc Ayla deck just get obliterated as they cannot contest the trace and they only have 2 breakers. DLR Andy is like 6 turns too slow, and value Hatchet Job is a legitimate play there. Also if you get the Mammons and double ice everything you can also win, but you have to bust your booty to get the agendas out after that. Tem Whizz has a hard time because they have to play the clip to use Tem, and by that point you should have 4 points and a money lead. Dyper is a blowout you just bounce the Leprechaun while rushing and they lose. Crisium is also insane vs Dyper.

The Games:

Day 1: 70 Person Swiss, 6 Rounds

Round 1 (Leah): A somewhat janky smoke deck that was playing Blackat and Dai V. Blackat came down early, but I couldn't find Salems and Film Critic came down. I was able to assemble the combo the turn before an Indexing came down, but it whiffed. After a surprise Dai V got killed when I was trying to rush another agenda, but she wanted to get multiple agendas that turn so she didn't put it on FC and ripped 2 off the top or RnD, Hunter Seeker hit, and she conceded. Whizz takes care of business. 2-0

Round 2 (Noah @nobo): Battle of the Noah’s for the second year in a row at ETX. This game went pretty quickly, because he was playing the SF Ayla which didn't beat our Skorp between me and Stephen all tournament. After I was able to Hatchet Salem’s his Faust and bust his bookmark, and Salems the Chameleon after a last ditch effort, another concession. Whizz gets wrecked. 3-1

Round 3 (Phillip): Also on the Ayla deck, but he just heard all about our Skorp from his teammate Noah. He tried to play around it, but a bounced Bookmark and a Salemsed Faust turned into a last ditch effort with Chameleon, where I got wrecked by Rumor Mill to pick him up to 6 points, but I found a second Salem’s and it was over. Concession, then I lucksack with Whizz, 5-1.

Round 4 (Joe @sighence): Playing Hayley lock, but had no idea what my gameplan was. Installed Faust and didn't run, it got blown up through his double Sac Con. A Chameleon got Salemsed after he went through most of his deck and played it. The deck just did its job, another concession and Whizz squeaks by, 7-1.

Round 5 (Kyle @bluebird503): My matchups were good vs Kyle but we are friends and it just makes sense to ID rather than risk it. 8-2

Round 6 (Max): ID town again. 9-3. Ended up 3rd after swiss on sos.

Day 2: Top 16 Cut

Game 1 (Phillip): I swept Phil from SF round 3, but I was much more confident in my corp matchup here as it is insane, and the game ended up being much closer than I would have liked. He drew a lot of money early and I drew none, but due to my money agendas I was able to rush a little. He played around Hunter Seeker really well, and it came down to an RnD access with Equivocation, and he missed and conceded afterword.

Game 2 (Clint @ramus): Whizz loses a close one, will be covered in runner write up.

Game 3 (Noah @nobo): Whizz takes care of business, covered in runner list.

Game 4 (Kris @tzeentchling): Sucks that this was the only game this deck got on stream, the Siphon Whizz is a bad matchup and I was able to lock down HQ with a Crisium but Keyhole is just too good vs Hunter Seeker.

Conclusion:

This deck is amazing and a force to be contended with. It is surprisingly consistent and a great meta call for this tournament. I believe this deck is one of the future powerhouses for this evolving rock paper scissors meta. It has so many good matchups and few bad ones, and it is very difficult to tech against. As people adapt to it, you must as well, so don't take this exact list as gospel. Big thanks to @CJFM for making the deck and @pandapersona for giving me the list and letting us tune it. Congratulations to @Joseki for winning the event (lucksack doged my deck, shucks), but he put in the work and it paid off. Also to @ramus for repping seattle and getting second. Also, thanks to @jakodrako for organizing and to @Wyrm for streaming the whole event. Most of all, thanks to the community for being great and all the people I met for being fun.

27 comments
5 Jun 2017 CJFM

@podoboyz99 You don't know how hard I was rooting for you this nats. Great result by a great player! Thanks for taking a gamble on this. :)

5 Jun 2017 thesenorcortez

Gr8 stuff dude, keep it up! I expect to see you at worlds.

5 Jun 2017 phette23

I wasted a lot of time trying to make Skorp work & came nowhere near this Hatchet-Salem's combo. Awesome work & congrats on the strong showing!

5 Jun 2017 Revelations

Great deck and awesome result. Big Weyland fan boy here so great to see it do well.

I know it is likely much of a muchness, but have you considered targeting Decoders instead? I only ask because of Hortum being a good ETR Code Gate in faction which can be made anti-AI and which should help one of your problem match ups (Siphon whizz)?

5 Jun 2017 podoboyz99

@Revelations That doesn't really work because there is not enough ETR code gates. There is Enigma, Quandry, Hortum, and the rest are bad or really expensive (Hortum is expensive but we are not counting that). The strength of this deck is you don't spend money on ice so you can beat them on the hatchet job trace.

@thesenorcortez I hope so! We will see.

5 Jun 2017 neuropantser

"Barrier (14)" That alone deserves a like. Congrats on the finish!

6 Jun 2017 Ulkrond

Great work!

6 Jun 2017 podoboyz99

@GoHawks came up with the name SeaSkorp. I think it's ok, thoughts?

6 Jun 2017 SneakdoorMelb

Great deck! What's the plan against Employee Strike? Hold Hostile for it?

6 Jun 2017 podoboyz99

@SneakdoorMelb I didn't see any Strike on the day, earlier versions of the deck had currents, but they were way too slow. You can go Jackson digging for Hostile [retty easily because they won't have Rumor Mill up.

6 Jun 2017 Ironcache

Love the idea. You consider swapping the ICE suite to code gates instead of barriers, and targeting their decoders?

Datapike/Enigma/Quandary/Hortum/1x Lotus Field/1x Mausolus seems playable. Much pricier as a whole than your current suite, but also generally has negative repercussions for face-check. Also, against Eater anarch, you have a game plan of killing Black Orchestra and use Hortum to lock out Eater.

6 Jun 2017 Ironcache

Could tag in Mother Goddess for the Maus if you wanted a full ETR suite, or Lotus to save the inf.

6 Jun 2017 Ironcache

Of course, 11 Barriers and 3 Code Gates (Hortum) is also an option (lord knows some of these barriers are less than optimal). I like how targeted the all in approach is though.

6 Jun 2017 Revelations

@Ironcache Read the response to me asking the exact same question earlier. As I said there it would be great because Hortum really helps vs Siphon Whizz, but as @podoboyz99pointed out code gates are generally more expensive which makes playing Hatchet Job more difficult.

6 Jun 2017 Ironcache

Fair enough I didn't notice the comment you made. Though, if you're worried about Eater Anarch, I'm still curious about going 11-3 vs. 14-0. I can easily see this dropping 2x Meru Mati and 1x Self-Adapting Code Wall to get Hortum. Beating Eater Anarch still just becomes a matter of killing BO in that case.

6 Jun 2017 WhackedMaki

I like the deck quite a bit, and will be trying it out for sure. Even though I 0-2 Dropped from Top 16 with Blue Sun I'm glad that you got to take Weyland a good bit further! Maybe we'll see some more days coming up with multiple Weyland players in Top 4

7 Jun 2017 mat

can confirm Hortum is a monster against Siphon Whizz, my only loss at a recent SC was due to it in a Skorpios deck

7 Jun 2017 Pinsel

Would you consider playing beanstalk instead of hedgefund? This would allow to play hunter seeker /Hatchtet from 0 credits e.g after Siphon/Vamp

8 Jun 2017 magaruis

When i tested this deck in yesterday, i tossed in 2 Lycans.

Con ; Lycan is horribly expensive in comparison to anything in the deck. Con ; People expect shenanigans if you install and advance ice.

Pro ; It gearchecks both other breakers and may give you outs against criminals who just out-econ the deck.

8 Jun 2017 locker

sleeved this seems to be fun ;) what do you think about slotting 2-3 sappers especially as ppl start to know that youre only on barriers

if they know you have sappers they have to respect them and install a breaker if they dont know it even better :P not sure if hortums would be better though

8 Jun 2017 ChairmanHiro

Good idea with the hatchet salems combo, however I can see this deck having a lot of trouble in a slightly different meta. Any deck with film critic/saccon + a bunch of money should just steamroll this deck. Plus anything with link. Mopus shapers are obviously it's biggest weakness, but a rich crim with a critic should also be a bad matchup for it as well. Definitely worth trying out though. After rotation would you just slot in 3 IP blocks?

8 Jun 2017 konradh

Jinteki.net stories:

First game: against double Inversificator Kit, with turn one Film Critic. Not much to do there!

Second game: Apex! Luckly Salem hit two Endless Hunger and I managed to rush agendas before he found third one.

9 Jun 2017 Ulkrond

@magaruis Hollis would like a word with you.

9 Jun 2017 podoboyz99

@Pinsel In this deck, every credit matters, that's why the ice is so cheap. The Hedges are better than Beanstalks because they help you get a money lead that much faster.

@locker Sapper can be really good, but you have to be 100% sure that people know what the deck is doing and that they don't play around Sapper. If you are playing vs someone you can Skorp to remove a injected MKultra to make them scared of you want, that is a legitimate play. Doesn't really help vs siphon whizz though.

@metafoxx This deck is a little meta dependent, Mopus shaper isnt as bad of a matchup as you might think, just because if they get all that crap up you should already be around the 7 point mark. That said it's not really favored. Brahman is the biggest issue for this deck, but if that becomes an actual issue you can add KGRTV.

9 Jun 2017 TrungusWungus

HOLY MOLY NOAH! Well done man! This deck is sweeeet! I'm try it out <3 Grats on your finish.

10 Jun 2017 zmb

Kit gave me trouble as well -another argument to maybe try and switch to Code Gates? Also, if you don't draw your Hostile Takeover, or (as it happened to me a couple of times) they got stolen, then currents are a must include! I have added 3 Paywall Implementation and used every one of them in most games, even recurring them with Jackson Howard in a war for currents (pesky Employee Strike) Like the deck very much though! Especially the look on the opponents face you rez yet another Barrier and he realizes thats all there is :)

11 Jun 2017 zmb

Archangel would make a great include too maybe?