The Journey Deck (1st @ Polish Nationals)

Matuszczak 1918

The AgInf deck that went 5-2 on the way to winning Polish Nationals. The description is going to get sentimental, but I don't care. It feels like so many of the learnings from the awesome 6 year Netrunner journey are in this deck. Learnings from the countless games, but most importantly from other runners.

I needed a Corp for Nationals as I knew I could not play PE. Not pecause it's not good: I knew that @Odol and @apo would be among the guys to beat, both knowing the list inside out and both running enough annoying counters to make them heavily favored against it.

Palanas proved very strong @Worlds, there were a couple of AgInf lists high in the standings as well, that reassured me that scoring Jinteki can work against the top runners. AgInf always felt stronger to me, I have a soft spot for the ID since the release, I just needed to find a way to solve econ. Top worlds lists ran Daily Quest, which I did not like. The remote is where I like to keep my agendas so I had to find another way.

Below's an incomplete list of card choice inspirations:

  • SSL Endorsement: @Odol was spectating my Val vs AgInf game in the top cut of worlds and told me that stealing an SSL from R&D lost me that game. I believe he was right. Hence a deck that aims to put an SSL in the game quickly. It's more important than the Nisei's. If you can score it or engineer a situation where the runner commits resources to stealing it early, you're likely to come out ahead.

  • Medical Research Fundraiser: @Selverin played it in plenty of different Jinteki decks over the years and once told me “my money is more important than your money” when I asked him why. I might be much fonder of denying runner’s creds, but the card does massive work here. It has a meaningful downside, but you only have to suffer it the benefit outweighs it. It’s a lot better than Celebrity Gifts that are one of Netrunner’s most overrated cards.

  • Macrophage: @Smieszny brought a Titan deck with Macrophage to Worlds. I was doubtful about the card, the deck had its ups and downs, but his wins were basically a Macrophage highlight reel. Khumalo could get popular after Worlds (they weren't really @ Polish Nats)? A way to purge Pelangi from Shapers? Criminals relying on Turtles? I'm Aginf so I can get away with specialized ICE choices? It proved very strong and the 2 copies won the key game against the very @Smieszny who inspired the card by purging his Pelangi and taxing his Smoke on R&D accesses.

  • Thimblerig: I remember arguing with @Asertus, @Odol and a bunch of other guys that Thimblerigs are ok, but are basically inferior Quandaries and the ability is almost irrelevant. I take that back, the ability matters in this deck, you do not need to worry about positioning your Excaliburs and other situational ICE. Just install them where you need them at the moment and even a single Thimblerig will be able to fix your ICE placement later down the line. They also annoy the hell out of Orchestra players.

  • Jinja City Grid: my favorite, beloved, extremely underrated pet card. It saves plenty of clicks, credits and enables servers that would be too expensive to build. It does amazing work here and in so many other scoring decks. Jinja > La Costa, you won’t convince me otherwise :)

This must be one of the strongest decks around right now. I’m sure the list can be fine-tuned and there definitely is an extremely high skill cap with all the Jinja, AgInf & Thimblerig triggers. Play it & have fun, scoring AgInf is my personal favorite Corp to play. Pursuing the dream of winning Polish Nationals has been one hell of a journey. Getting here with a deck that has so many of the learnings collected around the way in it just feels great.

PS: The journey does not end here, there’s plenty of Netrunner to be played. Always be running!

3 comments
31 Oct 2019 manveruppd

Huge congratulations dude! GINGER INFUSION IS LOVE AND LIFE! I've been playing something quite similar for the past year (with far less success, turns out piloting skill also matters in this game, who knew!), and can confirm, it's the most fun Corp deck since pre-rotation CtM! Macrophage is an absolutely inspired include, and I shall definitely try it out! I fully agree that SSL is the best agenda in the deck - I tried 3xObo 1xSSL briefly (right after Excalibur was unrestricted), and immediately went back to the same ratio you have, it's much better. I replaced the Philotic with a Timely Public Release tough, since, in AgInfusion, it's basically a 4th Nisei MK2. DRM has been a huge boost for it as well, as this deck basically loses if it can't find an agenda.

I'm curious if you think the NGO Fronts were worth including. In my experience my remotes aren't all that taxing, so the bluffing aspect of it isn't that valuable. I've been including draw and recursion in those slots (Hasty Relocation, which helps you move ice from hq to the top of your deck so you can install it for free with Jinja, and you can combine it with Genotyping to get rid of agenda flood).

I really don't know if this deck will be viable once Excalibur rotates, but I fully intend to keep trying it, especially now that I know it's actually possible to do well with it!

3 Nov 2019 vesper

Brawo i gratulacje :)

12 Nov 2019 Havvy

Loving the idea of Medical Research Fundraiser, going to give it a go in my Aginfusion deck now! :)