You could win a vacation cruise to hell! (Torsaug CO)

VirtualBread 151

Congratulations runner! You've won a one way cruise to hell! Featuring a luxurious first-class cabin, spacious open air spa, and a beautiful view of the river Styx, this literal voyage of a lifetime is worth 8000!

Rush out agendas, kill runners, lock down remotes, get ridiculous value, tutor the perfect tool for the situation, and put the heat on the runner. This rushy toolbox deck does it all.

This is an improved version of a deck I used in Torsaug (Toronto-Mississauga) Circuit opener and had a good amount of success with, even though I only placed middle of the pack because I suck at Netrunner and my Sable lost a lot of games. This deck is still very much a work in progress, but I want to publish it now to discuss it with the wider community.

The basic gameplan of this deck is to quickly build a remote or two and leverage them to rush out or force the runner to spend resources dealing with your board. Urban Renewal is a threat runners have to spend resources dealing with, while Special Offer ensures we almost always end up ahead if the runner does try to deal with our board

Flagship (heh) cards

Special Offer: "Mom, can we have Advanced Assembly Lines?"

"We have AAL at home."

AAL at home:

Special Offer into Rashida off the Ob trigger is so much gas the US wants to invade you. An absurd amount of tempo in a single card that also "protects" a server, this card makes it very hard for aggressive runners to keep you down. Your Ob targets when special offer self-trashes are:

  • Rashida Jaheem: Put this in a safe remote and get nonsense value

  • Spin Doctor: Even more important in Ob than your typical corp deck. Recycles all your Ob targets, especially your many 1-ofs and Border Controls. If specoff is protecting an agenda that's going to be stolen, you can fetch a spindo, install it overwriting the agenda, and then save it with spindo. Similarly, you can put specoff on archives to fetch spindo when the runner checks archives for agendas, or specoff on HQ to fetch spindo when the runner tries to fist you. If spindo stays on the table, you can leave it there until just before an Ob trigger to recycle the exact target you need. Also, spin doc is just a good option when you don't have a safe remote for Rashida. You burn through spin docs so fast, you'll wish you could run an extra 2 or 3 copies.

  • Svyatogor Excavator: You can use this card to force Ob triggers, recover from low credits, or just get incidental value over time. But this card isn't really our gameplan so much as something we can get utility off of when we tutor it in the right situation, so we only run 1.

  • Prisec: You install this in the attacked server and now the runner has to eat a prisec or jack out. This card being in the deck makes specoff really good at "protecting" your assets, especially early game. If they run, you get money and then they either eat prisec or leave your asset alone. If they don't run, you get to use your asset. This wasn't in my deck at the Torsaug CO, but I sure wish it were.

Based on my experiences, I would say that the best places for specoff in the early game are the remote to "protect" your assets (or agendas!), or R&D to either dissuade runners from poking it for accesses or get value if they do.

Boomerang, Endurance, Engolo, Pelangi, and Mayfly can all break specoff, but unless you really needed the specoff to fire, you're generally happy to rez a 1 cost ice that eats boomerangs, boat counters, or 5 from engolo. Aumakua, however, makes you very sad.

Border Control: Simply a great card for making remotes hard to get through. Border control makes especially obnoxious remotes in Ob, where you can fetch an Enigma off the Ob trigger and force the runner to go get their decoder after they just installed their fracter. Or fetch a Mavirus to dumpster their Aumakua. Border control is a key card in defending our remotes.

Urban Renewal: Our flatline method of choice. Urban Renewal + Azef Protocol + Any way to score Azef on the turn the bomb goes off is a kill. Install it ASAP even if you don't think you'll be able to assemble a kill in time, it makes runners panic and waste resources dealing with it.

Why Urban Renewal over all the Boom + MCAAP/Biotic/Bass/Drago/MAD/HHN kill Obs going around? Well:

  • Urban Renewal + Azef Protocol + Audacity is a whopping 0 influence. Why spend influence on bad cards like biotic, drago, or HHN when you could be spending influence on actually good cards like, ahem, special offer?

  • Azef Protocol + Audacity only requires 1, whereas most of the other kill combos require a good deal of cash. For example, MCAAP->Drago->Boom is 8. Also, Azef is a 3-of, and Urban Renewal can be tutored, so this combo is typically quite a bit easier to find than any of the boom combos. These two, combined, mean you can threaten kills very fast and with minimal investment.

  • The biggest reason: Urban Renewal is just a lot less committal than boom based kill combos. With all the anti-tag and anti-kill tech going around these days, you need to be able to score out or you're not going anywhere. The boom combo decks have very few avenues for winning outside of kill because they spend a lot of influence, deckslots, and resources on cards that are dead if you can't kill. Urban Renewal just requires Azef and Audacity, which are already great cards in rush.

I like to think of Urban Renewal as more of a secondary win condition rather than your primary win condition, which is rushing out. Urban Renewal is there to make runners panic and waste resources dealing with it or die if they can't. Even if you can't kill with it because your opponent has anti-kill tech or because you can't find your kill pieces in time, you still blow up their hand and snipe their important cards before fetching a 0 thingamabobber off the Ob trigger. Oh, and if you make them burn their anti-kill tech, you can to try for a kill again.

Notable cards

Regolith Mining License: Not the most ideal card for a deck that wants to spend its clicks rushing, but we really need a 2 cost card that gives us money and trashes itself to fetch Urban Renewal. Marilyn Campaign has to sit in a remote for way too long before giving you an Ob trigger, Nico Campaign costs too much influence, and I'm not Chad enough to run Defense Construct.

Wake Up Call: After the runner deals with our Urban Renewal, this trashes their boat, Earthrise Hotel, Liberated Account, Aesop's Pawnshop, etc. on the crackback or forces them to take 4 meat. It's a very nice run punishment card that's been putting in work in most of the games I've tested it in.

Calibration Testing: A good fast advance piece that gives you an Ob trigger. Can be fetched off Border control.

Mavirus: You might be familiar with this card's ability to stop clots and turtles, but what you might not know is that 10.1.2.a in the comprehensive rules says we can use Mavirus's trash ability whenever we want, even if there are no viruses anywhere. This is an important exception to the usual rule of "you can't use a card/ability if it can't change the game state" to know about. By contrast, Calibration Testing gets no such privileges; we can't use its ability without a target. Anyways, this means 2 things:

  1. We can use Mavirus as a bluff; if they check it, we can grab a 2 thing off Ob.

  2. We can use Mavirus to install a 2 thing off Ob at instant speed, like an IP block.

Envelopment: As most of us already know, it gets trashed to get you border control. Boomerang and boat do not like it.

IP Block: This used to be Whitespace, but lemme tell ya, that card is terrible against Aumakua. It also just isn't as taxing in general.

Afshar/Enigma: It's very nice to have a 3-cost non-barrier ETR because we can fetch it off border control.

Stavka: The great turtleslayer. Also a very good orbslayer. I kinda wish it did something to runners that haven't installed programs yet, but otherwise, this card is a nasty surprise because runners will often simply not be able to break a 7 strength sentry.

Other considerations

Transport Monopoly: Stuffs Diversion of Funds, Deep Dive, Chastushka, Pinhole Threading, Boomerang, Steve, all of crim's successful run triggers, and more. Or just steal 5 from the runner when they Dirty Laundry. In theory, it's good against a lot of the meta, but its direct competition is Oaktown Renovation and Offworld Office, which makes it a tricky sell.

Bio Vault: This card used to be in my deck, and to be honest, it's a good card. It makes our remote even more annoying, protects urban renewal from pinhole threading, and more. But I had to cut it to get influence for IP blocks once I realized whitespace is garbage. Maybe you can figure out how to put Bio Vault back in the deck.

Extract: I've thought about this for a while, but my take is that I don't think this card as good as it's made out to be. At least, in this variant of Ob. In the early game, you'd much rather have Hedge Fund because it doesn't destroy the board you're trying to set up. The mid game is where Extract is at its best, but we tend not to have money issues mid game. In the late game, Ob naturally kills the agenda density of R&D, and you don't want to speed up this process. Plus you won't have very many good Ob targets left. I think the real reason you might include this card is to force an Ob trigger on demand, but you already have Stavka, Azef, and excavator to force Ob triggers, and excavator, unlike extract, can be tutored by Ob. Plus most cards worth trashing in this deck already trash themselves.

Hard-Hitting News + BOOM! or Public Trail + Retribution: Since urban renewal forces runners to run early, it may be worthwhile to have stronger run punishment in the deck. Especially tag punishment to deal with runners going tag me. But I couldn't figure out how to make room for it in the deck, especially given how tight influence is already.

Wall to Wall: It's a good card, but I chose to skip it because it doesn't self-trash and the 1 cost slot is already so competitive.

Preemptive Action: Hey remember when I said you'd run 2 or 3 extra copies of spindo if you could?

Malapert Data Vault: If you trash a 2 cost card when you score Azef, you can install a Malapert in the Azef server and get a Malapert trigger off the Azef scoring. Pretty nifty huh? I originally cut this card due to deckslot issues and because we already have so much tutoring, but I could see this being a worthwhile inclusion.

Macrophage: In case you don't think we have enough answers to turtle. It's also quite good against Conduit, which this deck hates because we shuffle a lot and struggle to tax the runner out of R&D in a long game.

Cost chart

Indicates that this card self-trashes

5 cost

4 cost

3 cost

2 cost

1 cost

0 cost

18 Aug 2022 NinjaMike

Everything about this deck makes me happy, and I super smiled losing to it on the weekend.

18 Aug 2022 hemraa

Great through write up, and the Cost chart is really useful. How did it perform in the tournament, any tricky match ups?

18 Aug 2022 mr_pelle

Loving the Special Offers! I'm also brewing a similar deck, but more glacier-oriented.

18 Aug 2022 formerteen

(o_ _)ノ彡☆

18 Aug 2022 Sauc3

This is a bit of me alright! Nice work!

18 Aug 2022 VirtualBread

BTW, for those who want to know how well I did at the Torsaug CO:

Ob vs reg Hoshiko: I felt that everything was going right that game. The rush gameplan was going well, and I'd say I was on track to winning. But 4 out of the 5 cards Hoshiko accessed the whole game were agendas, what can you do.

Ob vs Wu:

18 Aug 2022 VirtualBread

BTW, for those who want to know my tournament performance:

Vs Reg Hoshiko: Our rush gameplan was going well, and we kept Hoshiko out of our remote very well. We were generally on track to winning. But then 4 out of 5 cards Hoshiko accessed the whole game were agendas. Well what can you do. Hoshiko generally isn't able to break out specoffs except with Botulus, which is very considerate of her. But on the other hand, the companions and The Twinning are all virtual, so we can't snipe them with Wake Up Call.

Vs Wu: Wu got down early rezekis and econ, and got rich fast. AI breakers and Boat made centrals porous, and Aumakua broke through specoff cheaply. But then we killed the boat with Wake up call. Stavka is a real MVP against turtle, and even through shapers run simulchip, you can usually snipe something good because stavka kills 2 programs, not 1, and because shapers usually have rezekis or some manner of useful programs sitting on the table for you to snipe.

Vs Sable: Tried to bluff a Stavka on HQ while putting Enigma on the remote. Worst mistake of my life. Got doofed for my life savings. Yeah don't do that. In general, I think Sable can be a tough matchup. Our ice is not as taxing as the Outfits, so we struggle to tax her out of centrals. We also don't like her having many ways to cheese her way through specoffs and gearcheck ice.

Vs Wu: Absolutely intense game. Both of us made mistakes, which eventually lead to a win from me, but I could have maybe won that game more decisively with better play. Basically I should have been less of a coward and rushed out, the remote was generally more secure than I was giving it credit for. Didn't end up installing Urban Renewal that matchup, but probably could have to force a response from the runner.

18 Aug 2022 Murse

Love seeing such niche cards finding a home.

18 Aug 2022 Sauc3

5 for 5 so far on jnet... So many lines!

19 Aug 2022 Murse

I adore the recent trend of players giving card by card rational for the includes in their deck. After a long drought of content it's making every decklist like an excellent blog post. Thanks for being part of that!

20 Aug 2022 Jakuza

I applaud the rise of more bread.

22 Aug 2022 wookiez

Played this a few times on JNet, really enjoyed it, nice list.

If I can offer a touch of critique, the meta I've seen right now is full of a ton of codebreakers. Swapping Enigma for a 3 cost ICE with an ETR, like Akhet or Sandstone might be a good way to deal with Engolo after Border Control.