A Jes list without DJ Fenris?! My rationale is probably not a sound one, but here's my main reasons for playing Miss Sareen:
I love runners that can pressure multiple centrals when the remote is unassailable, and the combination of normal RnD shaper tools (Maker's Eye, RDI) plus the added HQ pressure that Hot Pursuit affords you makes Jes an incredibly desirable run based shaper to play. Less setup/maintenance than Smoke, and less moving parts than Kabonesa or Hayley, I settled on her because I got to play a cool out of faction economy card and it helps me deal with matchups I struggle with.
I thought that Jes would really help me in run based tag matchups (Argus and CtM) which I expected to see a good deal of at the regional, though I was informed as I was writing up my decklist that the CtM trace is an unavoidable tag, rendering Jes less effecive in that matchup. Thankfully I did not face any CtM at the regional! I did face a single Argus (there were several at the tournament) and lost due to some piloting error as well as some quality play from my opponent. Had the choice to steal an over-advanced Atlas through two ravens, with only one I could break with Engolo. I was short on money so he could have paid through the raven trace to get a raven counter. With the added risk that I might be running into an NGO, I conceded the remote which would have put me up 4-0 early; albeit at risk for Econ Warfare HHN. I learned later he did not have the combo in hand at that time.
I dislike having to control my tempo around taggy trace NBN ice that we have been seeing out of Acme (Data Ward etc.) and normal nuisance ice like Turnpike or Data Raven. Jes obviously waltzes over much of this ice and laughs in the face of the ubiquitous IP Block. Only faced one NBN on the day, but she helped me bounce off two News Hounds against New Angeles Sol.
Here are the things I learned about the deck before and after a 3-1-1 weekend:
The deck's breakers are incredibly expensive to get up and running without value Stimhacks or without The Artist triggers. All breakers (including D4vid) are 3 or more to install with the exception of the backup fracter Gauss which ironically was the only fracter I installed on the day to deal with Border Controls (although Cerberus "Lady" H2 would actually be more efficient.) I felt like my turn 1's were really slow unless there was an uniced HQ or RnD; but many of my opponents smartly double ice'd centrals turn 1 rendering an opening Hot Pursuit or Maker's Eye undesirable.
I was anticipating Compile D4vid would be more impactful over the course of the day to contest Surveyor/big ice remotes, but the only time I used it to great effect was in the Blue Sun matchup where I was able to pressure a 2 ice RnD with Chiyashi/Border Control to see multiple cards on my second to last turn forcing the Chiyashi rez and subsequent bounce as well as a Border Control fire on my last click, giving me a free RnD to maker's eye on my last turn to tie the game.
In testing, I found that I really struggled to stymie rushy HB Jinja glacier that could slap multiple Surveyor's and Border Control's on the remote, so I included (at Josiah from Pittsburgh's suggestion) a 1x Escher and a 1x Same Old Thing to get further mileage from all of my high impact run events. Escher is such a cool card, and actually has utility in this deck, because I really don't have the ability to pressure double 12 str surveyors on a remote server without taking mad tags. Two situations I could have used it: taking Double Raven off of the remote in the Argus matchup if I had been more patient and disassembling a double Border Control remote in the New Angeles Sol matchup. Kudos to Simon for putting a Crisium on HQ the turn before I Escher'd in, well played.
The Artist/Supercorridor are shaper cards I really love together. It feels great to pay 1c to net neutral next turn on Rezeki, but also love installing Clone Chips or Pelangi for free. Saving credits on installs is great, but the real secret benefit is equalizing credit totals for Supercorridor end of turn trigger. Being able to spend 1c less on an install or gaining 2 credits at the end of your turn gives you a much larger window to play around the corps credit total, and reliably got me several triggers over the course of the weekend. Planning out your turn with that mini game in mind is also quite interactive and fun. Also, Supercorridor has my vote for best 2 MU console, even though Maya has built in Jes synergy. +1 hand size really helps with ProCo over draw, damage matchups (invalidates double punitive and helps with contesting Obo's when you don't have Film Critic) and gives you more mileage on your Stimhacks. While +2 MU supports the full rig that added Rezeki's to keep up with Corp credit tempo.
Beth was my only hostage target, and it gave me a ton of mileage on ProCo throughout the weekend. She's a great card!
Diversifying pressure on RnD and HQ with Maker's Eye/RDI and Hot Pursuit respectively was a really effective strategy to slow corps down when my own board state takes a long time to reach full potential.
I still struggle against Argus even with the crutch that Jesminder provides. Thanks to my Argus opponent Josh for talking through the matchup after our games and giving me some pointers!
For those about to ask, no, I never used Because I Can. It was mostly for clown car remotes, unassailable defensive upgrades and bouncing a high priority asset I couldn't afford to trash. It's really a tech card that could either stay or go. I do love the card though, and I would be remiss if I didn't have it as a tech card to slow a corp down while I'm not fully set up.
Thanks to all the players for being so welcoming to an out of towner and especially to all my opponents who took the time to talk through matchups, strategy and deck building ideas. I really learned a lot from everyone I played and had a great time! Thanks to Dan Spinosa (CodeMarvelous) for not only TO'ing a great tournament, but setting up and running a killer stream promoting the game, making judge rulings all day and commentating on top! Stellar tournament, I will be sure to return soon for another!
If anyone has any questions about the deck or feedback to making it better (probably +1 Fenris for -1 Stimhack) I'm open to conversing!
25 Jul 2019 Sanjay