The Process — 1st @ UK Ranking Finals

Frost 466

I've pretty much played solely Azmari through this season and it's been a stalwart companion throughout, always ending with positive record. Azmari is great because of how it could be anything: Punitive, EoI, BOOM!, or in this case just straight glacier, bringing me to a 5*-2 finish.

This is not a tricksy deck. It makes money and it makes the runner spend money getting through ice. Games against non-shapers usually involve icing up centrals, earning money, and then starting up the agenda revolving door through the remote when it's taxing enough.

A very easy mistake is to be too aggressive: at some point your remote will become effectively unassailable, there's no need to rush. Just protect centrals for a few turns until you get there.

One of the harder parts is baiting runs through ice. Not even baiting runs through the entire remote, even. Endless EULA is a glass cannon that needs to be placed properly so the runner pays through it only to find out they couldn't get through the server anyway. The ideal order tends to be [TTW/Hippo buffer] -> Endless EULA -> Surveyor -> Border Control.

One thing I've picked up is that you don't always have to IAA. Nobody wants to run and trash your Rashidas once it's iced up so unadvanced agendas are often safer in the remote than HQ. This also gives you flexibility in scoring it, giving you a click to shore up a hole in centrals, or to jam a Rashida or Echo Chamber in immediately afterwards.

Thanks

  • To boot, fellow Azmari and Apoc Crim lover.
  • To the London crew, for being a welcoming and friendly lot, despite the disappointing chips.
  • To jamesgrey for repeatedly beating me with Freedom on Jinteki.net until I learned how to play against it.
  • To rotage for TOing.
  • To johno for tirelessly organising the dinner afterwards.

Matches

  • R1 W vs rotage on reg Val: Turn 1 scarcity. He never managed to generate enough economy to contest anything.
  • R2 L vs steffmonkey on reg Val: I made a combination of mistakes of trying to score too aggressively and rezzing the outermost ice against hippo. Combined with a rip off R&D it slipped away.
  • R3 W vs kikai on 419: He was an aggressive runner on Engolo rather than Corporate Grant so a mid-game scarcity stuck. An unfortunate misplay of letting an IP Block fire on a DoF run combined with not finding enough econ bled his credits dry.
  • R4 W* vs twisty_b on Maxx: He never found enough of his econ and I was able to set up ready to start pushing agendas through the remote... And then time was called and we were 3-3. I had an Echo Chamber ready to be scored in another turn and he was broke, so it's a win in my books. ;)
  • R5 L vs rusefus on 419: More passive 419s are one of the worse matchups for the deck but are not unbeatable. Having Corporate Grant also changed the landscape and we both ended the game with multiple currents in our hands, each not wanting to be the first to play theirs. Once he set up, he slowly built up to a Turning Wheel deep dig while sniping a few agendas and won the turn I threatened to score out.

  • Cut W vs paulyg on Leela: He never found econ. Hernando Cortez arrived and turned off an Endless EULA I had protecting R&D, but the accesses weren't enough.

  • Finals W vs angedolo on Freedom: A hell of a nailbiter! A great ending to a great day. I got flooded a bit ending up with three agendas while trying to draw for ICE (there's a reason this deck has 18 in 44 cards). I slowly set up centrals while he dug for accesses and sniped two Degree Mills out of HQ. The saving grace was a Daily Quest I had stuck since the early game. After I drew enough ice, the huge money advantage let me rez enough ice to shut him out of every server, leaving me time to push agendas through the remote and score out.

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