Chop Cam Apex

phette23 2017

I've gone 6-1 over two GNKs with variations on this deck now. It's surprisingly good.

edit because a few people actually took interest in the deck I guess I should add a write-up.

Mulligan for Chop Bot & nothing else. I'm not sure what weird matchup or how excellent a hand would have to be for me to keep without Chop Bot. It is this deck's Wyldside.

The engine: use spy cam at the end of the corp's turn to trigger Reaver + Wastelands, then Chop Bot a facedown card at the start of your turn to draw 2 (one for Chop Bot, one for Reaver) & trigger Wastelands. If you draw a conspiracy breaker, you usually want to facedown & chop it to get it in your heap at a profit. The engine is like old school Noise in that it produces clickless cards & credits every turn.

Apex happens to have enormously powerful hate cards for a number of matchups. It is extremely good against net damage or Brain Rewiring decks. Double Hunting Grounds helps against NBN. Shadow Net is surprisingly relevant (15 Minutes, News Team, Shi Kyu, Standoff, Project Kusanagi, etc) against shenanigans. I used to not play Prey in Apex at all but it's become excellent as ICE got better & the disappearance of Parasite lead to the return of low-strength ICE like Komainu & Kakugo.

Some nuances: the order of your Apex/Chop Bot triggers vary by turn; if you have no facedowns or Harbinger, use Apex first, otherwise try to use Chop Bot first so if you draw something you want to facedown (e.g. a conspiracy breaker) you can. Always use Apex if you have a useless card in hand as the facedowns are fuel for later. Remember Reaver triggers on trashing corp cards (e.g. if you Prey an ICE). Sometimes you want double Reaver while you're setting up, to find all your Wastelands, but when that leads to too many cards you Chop Bot the second one. You can a) choose which ICE to Prey, b) don't have to break all subroutines on it, & c) can do stuff like Hunting Grounds the on-encounter, then trash HG to get enough facedowns to feed to Prey.

Only one Apocalypse?!?

Apex has a better board state than most corps, turning it all facedown is typically a mistake. Apoc is a fine emergency plan if everything goes wrong but that's it. Literally the only time I've played it with this list was after a turn one where Haarpsichord installed three naked remotes. Honestly, the apoc is a flex slot that could be something else (3rd Prey, a current). I know, I know, I'm no fun.

Also, Endless Hunger just doesn't do enough and is a very awkward fit for a rig that includes a 1MU console and a utility program. I don't think it's worth a card slot for the very few situations where it'd be usable.

6 comments
23 Nov 2017 tendermovement

The fact that a lot of economy is gone from the runner side really makes Apex's WasteBot good. Aumakua is great for having a stable rig rather than blowing it all up. I used to play a Faust with Reavers but now Aumakua has replaced it and replaced it well.

23 Nov 2017 phette23

I, too, was on the Faust-Reaver Apex train back in the day. Made building the breaker suite so much easier. But as you say, with fewer economy options having a build-your-own-Aesop's option is quite strong.

25 Nov 2017 rubyvr00m

Have you considered playing Fester?

I took your list onto JNet and swapped the Deuces for a set and it seemed to really boost the effectiveness of Aumakua as a primary breaker. The only other changes I made: -1 Apocalypse, -1 Spy Cam, +1 Aumakua, +1 Injection Attack.

Kudos on making a solid Apex deck. I think I might pick this up for casual games.

27 Nov 2017 phette23

I hadn't considered Fester. A good include if you want to lean on the turtle more like the changes you describe, I'm mostly thinking of it as an early pressuring tool though. I really don't want to add more cards to the rig, I prefer Deuces for the better setup speed.

4 Dec 2017 phette23

Now 9-1 through 3 GNKs. Just barely missed winning on SoS :(

3 Jan 2018 JDC_Wolfpack

Took this deck to a GNK recently and went 2-1. I beat out a Skorp and Comrades CtM. My only loss was against a Rush Palana when I couldn't set up fast enough. This deck is super fun and surprisingly competitive.