Cockatoo Brawler (8-1¹ @ Syd Aus Nats '23; 6th in cut)

sohum 457

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QTM built the deck, I'm just the fool that stared at it and thought "okay but what if tutor tho". Pivot gives this deck an astonishing ability to respond immediately to the boardstate and capitalise on small runner missteps, and it even lets you tutor up a Bellona to take advantage of a scoring window.

The cockatoos were insistent that we offer the runner opportunities to better themselves instead of smashing their shit, and they're right. (They're always right.) It dodges the economic discount of Simulchip reinstalls, and the cred hit is immediate and real enough that you can usually close the game out immediately.

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It is seven years ago. It is ten years ago. It is round four at Sydney Nationals 2023.

The runner is playing Maker's Eye on R&D. The runner is running with Medium on R&D. The runner is playing Finality on R&D.

I need to reduce my agenda density. The cockatoos are watching. I flip the card my fingers know so well — a friend, a collaborator, a brother. I rez Jackson Howard. I rez Jackson Howard. I rez... Jackson Howard, and shuffle in a couple of non-agenda cards back into my deck.

I look down at the card in my hands, to see Spin Doctor's rez trigger. I receive an Irrecoverable Failure To Maintain Gamestate; a game loss.

The cockatoos are still watching.


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okay. fine. i get it. you wont let me unsubscribe. but then the least you can do is listen to me vent okay. i dunno yall it's just pretty much entirely my little kid competitive sweaty nature resurfacing and makin me feel like shit that for some unforeseen and impossible reason i'm not like immediately doing well at this game after years and years away from it. i know that. you know that. i know you know i know that.

doesn't stop me from feelin like shit tho.

it's such a tiny thing. it's so stupid to feel this and the fact that this is so stupid is in and of itself making me feel stupid. yknow?

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yeah. yeah okay. yeah yeah yeah fair enough okay.


¹ my record with the deck was 3-1 in swiss and 1-0 in the cut; the loss being the technical game loss described above — we played it out afterwards, and it would've been my win. A friend brought the same deck and went 3-1 in swiss. A bit cheeky, perhaps, to call that 8-1, but in my defense, the cockatoos are okay with it.


An UNASSUMING YOUNG MAN locks the balcony door behind him as he steps out, leaning into the bright morning and its view. Occasionally, he takes a picture. He's masking it, but our shot focuses in on his shaking fingers and too-frequent blinking. He's NERVOUS. JITTERY. Perhaps even PANICKED.

As he's looking one way, through the lens of his camera, a SULPHUR-CRESTED COCKATOO lands on the balcony railing behind him. Then another. By the time he turns to see them, there are FOUR COCKATOOS perched on the balcony railing.

He backs away, alarmed. TWO MORE COCKATOOS land on the railing he just vacated. They make no noise, and no further moves.

He looks inside, to the PARTY BUS CREW he has travelled to Sydney with. They shrug. He looks back. The cockatoos look back at him.

The man tries to speak to the cockatoos, but they pay him no mind. He takes a picture, then two, then three, and they preen.

His fingers are no longer shaking.


27 Sep 2023 Porkobolo

Yay, cockatoo facts!

27 Sep 2023 izzy

I'd like to subscribe to cockatoo facts!

27 Sep 2023 chordgang

Hey, cool to see you're still playing! Congratulations on the fantastic performance and beautiful writeup, and I'm so so sorry about the game loss. Spin Doctor is jealous and petty; he only did that to you because he knows he can never replace Jackson in your heart.

28 Sep 2023 jan tuno

fucking incredible writeup. qtm wants to moresubscribe to cockatoo facts. more. more.

28 Sep 2023 Phros

Great writeup, great weekend, great nats, great deck!

28 Sep 2023 ThePatrician

The highs and lows deserve a podcast. Also, 2 Brewers R+ decks had auto game losses... PE does not have this problem ;P

28 Sep 2023 m.p

Can someone explain to me what the "technical game loss" was? did he rez spinny at 1 card in RnD?

28 Sep 2023 m.p

also, i´d like to subscribe to cockatoo facts

28 Sep 2023 crowphie

this writeup rules. the lineage never dies!

28 Sep 2023 chordgang

m.p pretty sure it was "rez spin and immediately pop to shuffle R&D, Jackson style) forgetting to draw the two cards before shuffling

28 Sep 2023 Paillu

-puts the cockatoo feed on the QtM server- subbscribed! bird facts! We love.

28 Sep 2023 DeFlow

Been testing this list, with a few changes:

V1: -1 Funhouse, -1 Artificial Cryptocrash, +2 Oracle Thinktank.

V2: -1 Pivot, -1 Wraparound, +1 Magnet, +1 Mavirus.

I really like Behold!, what do you think about that card in this deck?

28 Sep 2023 crowphie


  • cutting Funhouse definitely used to be correct. We've seen a lot more Conduit recently, but even so I don't think it's worth the slot - it's just so brutal to rez and see them bounce off.

  • I wouldn't move back to 3x Thinktank. If you play triple Tank, then you have a lot of difficulty drawing agendas you want to score, since scoring Tank is real bad for you. Playing an extra 2-pointer is far more valuable than packing additional ambushes into the deck.

  • In general, I wouldn't want to play less than 13 ice, and I'd consider swapping the Cryptocrashes to Offworld Offiices to smooth the economy a little.

  • Behold is theoretically fine but we never found it worked out in practice. If it works out for you then go for it, I just never found myself enjoying it.

28 Sep 2023 sohum

@emilyjoh heya! thank you for the kind words! to be quite honest, i was still iffy about dipping my toes back into competitive netrunner, right up until APAC Continentals when I saw you tearing up the charts. The more things change... 😅

@QtM yall rock, and it's honestly extremely rad to have yall as one of the top testing groups in the game!

@Microbrewers 💜💜💜

@m.pyep, @emilyjohhas the right of it. funny thing is, apparently, if I'd shuffled back two faceup cards, that would have been recoverable.

@DeFlowI do think the Funhouse is the least-performing ice, but it feels wrong to drop the last one, because there are setups where it's useful to have. I agree that the 3x Thinktank just feels awkward a lot of the time. The problem with Behold imo is that the runner rarely digs this deck until they're already tagme, at which point Behold does nothing for you. The deck lives on that tightrope of "stuff wot is good before tagme" and "stuff wot is good after tagme", so.

2 Oct 2023 Dragons1rule

An amazing writeup for an amazing deck! I'm honoured to be included in the win-loss count (even if I did ruin your ""perfect"" record). Thanks for humoring all of my silly ideas for this deck, I couldn't have gotten those wins without your advice! :)

5 Oct 2023 HolyMackerel

Ah, it's been a long time since I've seen a deep LRR cut like ServoFacts. Thanks for the laughs :)

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