This is the version of what I'd call the post rotation L4J anarch deck that I started working on together with Alex Marchuk from Brisbane, and Garth Davos from Adelaide, before notable refinements and improvements were made with testing and input from The Winning Agenda team members Wilfred E Horig and Jesse Marshall, as well as Jian and Sam (all Melbourne residents). The introduction of Imps over Scrubbers, as well as Femme and Retrieval Run were fantastic. Jesse piloted a similar list, though he forewent (2) Career Fairs, and thus found room for an information sifting and another D4v1d. Information sifting did provide another powerful avenue of attack for Jesse when Employee strikes stayed in the deck, and was a popular choice across all factions as people sought to contest game states where HQ was a safe location for agendas due to ridiculous hand sizes. In contrast, my list leaned a little more heavily on being able to play not one but two employee strikes back to back, to force the CI player into the uncomfortable position of discarding a large number of cards, making HQ much better for single accesses, and legwork.
Kim seemed like a solid choice in a world where runners didn't have turn 1 pressure, and a lot of win conditions and much of the corp economy is based on operations. Kim's ability is relevant from turn 1, which means you can force early ice rezzes on centrals, which feels great. That said, the breaker suite is inefficient, lending itself to fewer runs per turn (game) than other breaker suites. High impact run events along with recursion provide an appropriate workaround to this problem.
Otherwise this deck is essentially money, card draw, tech cards for various match ups, and high impact run events. Against an uncertain field this deck feels good, and it has favourable match ups against all CI decks (bar perhaps Stinson CI), though player skill does matter here. Imp once again helps with the Jinteki match up (and really all match ups), while Knifed was a late change from Spooned, to combat Ashigaru, Chyashi, and Kakogu. Similarly, while Hunting Grounds was an early include, it dawned on us more and more just how useful the card would be in a meta where jinteki would most definitely have to be respected. The ability to turn off Komainu, Data Loop, and Data Raven, and mitigate the impact of cards such as Loki, IP Block, and Turnpike was huge. Combined with Political Operative, Femme, Imps, and I've Had Worse, Hunting Grounds enabled strong avenues of central server pressure against Jinteki corps, while limiting the viability of any form of remote play.
Only potential changes to this, based on the weekend's results, is the possible inclusion of an Aumakua or two in place of Career Fairs. While one can definitely combine retrieval run and same old things to change Femme targets over the course of a game, Aumakua can be fantastic. Hunting Grounds would in the case of Aumakua inclusion provide further value by disabling the on encounter effect of IP block.
For people wanting to play other cards, there are plenty of fun 1 influence cards that work in a deck like this, including maxwell james, and hernando cortez. There's a lot of flex here, just don't play Maw.
This is awesome...a Kim in the top cut, nevermind the Top 5!! Speaking as the only competitive Edward Kim player in the greater central Connecticut area (at least, I think I am...not that that's saying much), this is very encouraging and speaks volumes to the fact that today's meta is very fun and full of variety!! Congrats on your successes at Worlds, firesa! :) I'm definitely plugging this one into my DB app.