Killer hand, bro

Heartthrob 2482

Recipe for a killer hand, bro:

1/2 deck - Any CI (score-from-hand) deck 2 copies - Scorched 1 dash - SEA Source 3 copies - Gyri's Labrynth 3 copies - Reclamation Order

Carefully mix in tagging ice: 2 - Data Ravens 3 - Hunters 1 - Shadow 2 - Ichi 1.0

KILLER HAND, BRO (shout out to my man @AKAnderson for help testing and tweaking the deck...also shout out to Board Game Revolution in Orem, Utah and our awesome Netrunner group!)

*I've been excited to share this deck for a while now, so I hope you guys like it. I think it's the best deck I've built to-date.

So the typical, powerful CI combo deck (see: Cerebral Hive of Giraffes) uses extra clicks and a handful of necessary combo pieces to get money and hold off the runner until you're ready to score the win from hand in 2-3 major turns. All of these decks use some combination of Efficiency Committee, Biotic Labor, Shipment from San San. To stop the combo the runner has to apply heavy pressure and win from R&D and HQ before the Corp can get its pieces in hand.

This means that they can't sit back, they can't cash up and they need to run aggressively... They are now vulnerable to a new CI deck archetype - a kill combo.

Instead of gathering fast adv scoring combo pieces, this deck spends time collecting scorches, archived memories and SEA Source...waiting behind tagging ice to get some extra clicks to hit the runner with multiple scorched turns. Gyri's get them in singe Scorch kill range , Data and Hunter will eventually stick a tag, and SEA Source will catch them with their guard down.

Why I believe this deck is better than the traditional CI archetype:

  • So many ways to set up the win. You have several ways of hitting them with multiple scorches. If they don't plascrete up hard, you will win very early with a Scorch or 2x Scorch. If they do plascrete you have multiple ways to hit them with 3x or 4x scorch. If they choose to float tags they are dead, otherwise they get supremely slowed down and stopped by your ice. If they are hellbent on not dying from Scorch, you can start scoring those NAPDs.

  • It punishes the best counter to the traditional CI deck - Aggressive Runs. In order to put the hurt on traditional CI you have to run hard and often, sometimes employing reckless tactics (looking at you Siphon). If you do that to this deck you seal your fate.

  • They can never kill your combo pieces with Imp/Noise/Demo Run. You have Archived, Reclamation and Vitruvius...you'll get those pieces back if you need them.

  • You can easily score to win if you must. If they get wise and start sitting back, it's time to start scoring NAPD. If they score it, they just helped you SEA Source for cheaper. If they leave it, you score it and move on to score another. Big turn with 3x Biotics to score Priority out of hand if needs be.

  • The deck has the trappings of a score-out-of-hand deck. If it comes to it, score an Efficiency out of your hand. You'll use those free clicks later to 3x-4x Scorch :)

  • Low agenda density. Much like Peekay's Cerebral Hive of Giraffes, the agendas are few and far between. Sorry Indexing, was it worth taking 3 tags coming through my ice to score that NAPD?

  • More player interaction. You can kill on turn 2...or turn 25. It totally depends on how the runner plays. Eventually you will win, but how you do so requires you to be on your toes every turn, always looking to bait the runner into taking tags and letting their guard down.

I went 3-0 in a store tourney with this today, scorching the win all three times in the early goings.

This deck has been through many tests against every runner deck we can think of (we've net decked all of you guys btw! Thx for your input on my runner decks too) and it has lost only twice that I can remember...both times to really bad draws. A couple of times I have had to 4x Scorch the win against triple Plascrete. I think by now we have tested this deck 24+ times.

Give it a try and see what you think.

Note: I believe @AKAnderson will be sharing his version that won a small store tourney, so keep your eyes open for that deck too!

23 comments
27 Apr 2014 yeoda

Such a scary deck. And the only one I lost to in the tournament.

Assuming the runner clears tags, at what point to you decide to just pump out the NAPDs? You cant just biotic an NAPD, so do you set up a remote server for scoring? My thought are you put all your tagging ice in the centrals and put up the ETR ice on your single remote.

Great job on this deck, I still like my big ice, but at some point I'll join the cool kid club and get these combo decks.

27 Apr 2014 AkAnderson

Against @Heartthrob he was staying within a safe credit amount (we were both in the 30s) and so twice I dropped a naked NAPD, wanting him to take it. I think I prefer to score or Biotic out Efficiency Committee first over NAPD unless the credit totals are very close.

27 Apr 2014 Heartthrob

@Yeoda, you need to publish that big ice deck man...it was great. AKAnderson used to run an HB big ice that was mean. Early pressure is tough to deal with though.

To your question, that's what I like about the deck. It takes savvy to pilot correctly. You may start to score just to bait the runner into wasting credits going through your remotes so that you can SEA Source. I think we've only had to score the win a handful of times...the rest were Scorch murders.

27 Apr 2014 PeekaySK

Nice writeup, although I'm missing some important stuff here :D Just wait till I publish my CI from the Chronos in Vienna. Similar, but different enough to publish. Went 5-0 on that day, shame I ran like a moron so I finished 5th on tie-breakers.

28 Apr 2014 Heartthrob

I'd definitely like to see that version Peek. Just give mine a little time to get some likes before you publish yours and steal the thunder ;)

28 Apr 2014 PeekaySK

No worries man, I'll be publishing mine as part of an article on CI as such, and yours will be definitely quoted in there as well :D

28 Apr 2014 Elthane

I really like the inevitable feeling that this deck gives the runner, catch 22, playing on your terms. I meant to ask you how you deal with the credit downswing after your first double biotic into efficiency committee, you save the efficiency committee for the scorch so you are not using it to reclaim restructure--does this open a significant attack window for the runner? when I played AKA I saw the scorch 1 turn too late, otherwise I think between Magnum Opus, Plascrete, and the 1 of Chakana I had in my Runner deck I would have been able to at least put up a fight. I am going to force him to play it against me on OCTGN so that at least I can learn the in and outs of the deck.

28 Apr 2014 falseidol

What do you think about Hellion Alpha Test for a deck like this? My thinking was that it either pressures them into not clearing tags, or helps to keep them poor for when you SEA Source?

28 Apr 2014 AkAnderson

@Elthane you are right about a window for the runner after trying to score, but it usually only lasts for a turn or two. Your hand or archives should be so full of money cards that you bounce right back. The deck can get kindof clunky if you're being forced to Archive Memories a Reclamation and vice versa in order to then get back your money cards but if you've played your ICE right then you should be taxing and safe to recover.

28 Apr 2014 Heartthrob

Hellion Alpha Test eh? I kind of like that...

@Elthane, I wouldn't even double biotic that Efficiency. Personally I would set up a remote and drop something in it with a nice piece of tagging ice over it. Bait them or score it cheap next turn. Also, isn't Scorch the kind of play you always see 1 turn too late ;)

When I run against this deck I always feel like I have to play as if they could kill me at any time. I always want to throw down 3x Plascrete, but who can ever draw to those quickly enough? I know I find myself half-digging for them, but have to stop once the remote is started. That inevitable feeling of doom is, in a word, terrible.

28 Apr 2014 Heartthrob

@Peekay, where will you be publishing that btw? BGG, Stimhack?

28 Apr 2014 Elthane

The one time I played against AKA I pulled a first turn indexing, didn't see anything abnormal and scored a 3 pointer. The next turn I pitched 2 plascretes...the 3rd turn I checked the top card of r&d, saw the scorch and laughed realizing I was pretty much dead this turn or the next, if that indexing had tipped me off I think I would have won by delaying with plascretes and matching income with opus/delaying with chakana I had all the tools to do it--but hindsight is 20/20 isn't it? Take away? install plascrete against CI from now on.

28 Apr 2014 AkAnderson

@Elthane it was incredibly hard to hide my grin when I saw you discard those Plascretes

28 Apr 2014 Elthane

My hats off to you sir, well done.

29 Apr 2014 PeekaySK

@Heartthrob: Stimhack, simply because of how incredibly convenient their mobile interface is. Also, better structure of the forums. I'll drop a link here one it's up.

@Elthane: at Chronos Vienna, I actually smoked my last opponent through two carapaces. Granted, it was mostly showing off at that point, as I could have just as easily scored my PriReq and be done with it, but all my wins up to that point were flatlines so I figured why be a combo-breaker je

29 Apr 2014 PeekaySK

So, if you're interested, here's my version: netrunnerdb.com

I tend to think of my approach as sneakier than yours, because there's less stuff to give away the Tag'n'Bag nature of the deck - most of the time in actual play it looks similar to a Celebrity Gift-based build that is just having a tough time finding its Giraffes :D

Also, it's much better to rely on proactive tagging in my opinion - God knows you're usually holding a bank large enough to tag the runner comfortably :P

29 Apr 2014 Heartthrob

Yours definitely hides the Tag n' Bag well. I like it. But I still like the Killer style of this deck as well. One thing's for sure, we're going to have to learn to run effectively against these archetypes and it ain't easy.

My deck doesn't mind if you waste time trying to play around the tags, that's often as effective as barrier ice and often more frustrating. I love Hunter, such a pain piece of ice for soooo cheap (which is nice for early-game CI).

Reasons I love Hunter - Strength 4 (sorry Mimic and Parasite) - Costs 1 - Almost always costs the runner 3 creds to go through - Nobody Knights it - Nobody Atman's it - No influence - Few people use it, so a lot of peeps aren't sure what to do about it.

30 Apr 2014 PeekaySK

Agreed on Hunter, it's a very underrated piece of ICE.

I see how you tipping your hand about wanting to kill the runner isn't necessarily a bad thing because it slows down the runner in general. But here's what I'm afraid of - most of my CI losses came from a single power turn anyway, because that's definitely the easiest way to go around the taxing nature of the deck's ICE (if your runner deck is built to work that way). In those scenarios, it looks to me like I'm losing more than I'm gaining, with your ICE suite. I'll definitely test your version and see how I like it in actual play, though.

BTW, my writeup on CI is published: stimhack.com ... check it out and let me know what you think!

30 Apr 2014 Jack Weyland

I love the implicit mention of how I died to this deck. Indexed through two Hunters for a single NAPD. SEA source, scorched, scorched. Katman what....?!?!?! No, it was not worth it. Didn't expect a kill deck out of CI. I can't wait to see what you bring to our next match up Heartthrob.

30 Apr 2014 Dydra

great idea and implementation mate ;) if i was playing anything else except Jinteki, I'd have tried that

30 Apr 2014 Heartthrob

@eapgood. Haha, that indexing made me happy (indexing never makes me happy). Good match still. The league will surely bring out some excellent new decks.

@Dydra I appreciate that. I'll need to get my own Jinteki deck revamped for H&P

@Peek, I'll def be checking out that writeup!

2 May 2014 Deezal

Love the premise of this deck, it includes the two things I love in building decks currently... Meat damage and fast advance... But it's the subtlety of the meat damage which is cool... Easy to overlook this as the runner if it ain't obvious....I'm pretty new to the game and really appreciate you guys sharing your decks... Very awesome..

3 May 2014 Heartthrob

Thanks @Deezal and it's good to see new players on here getting a lay of the land. We'll continue to share our deck ideas and hopefully players will take them and improve upon them.

As for this particular deck, it continues to really put the hurt on everything but a Magnum Opus + Vamp attack. For that reason my newest version runs Beanstalk Royalties. The Magnum + Vamp approach needs to wait until late in the game to strike (looking for that juicy archive score), so if you see the runner clicking Magnum for money and sitting back, it's time to score an Efficiency Committee. That will give you 3 emergency credits in the event that you are Vamp'd. Also, you hold a Beanstalk (or two) and a Hedge Fund and possibly a Restructure. They hit a big Vamp turn and take 30 creds from you - next turn you get 3 clicks from EC, Beanstalk, cred, cred, Hedge, cred, Restructure you're back to 15 creds. Or, if they float the tag. +3 clicks from EC, Beanstalk, cred, cred, Hedge, Scorch, Scorch.

I feel like the Magnum + Vamp attack is strong enough against CI to warrant this counter. Once you emergency recover, the runner will be in a tough spot with no money. Good time to start scoring in a remote if you haven't already Scorched them.