Literally the worst possible deck

Greasythumb 556

Here the objective is to make the worst deck of all time. It's worth questioning whether 'worst deck' means 'the best deck for a player who is actively trying to lose' or 'the worst deck for a player who is actively trying to win'. By refusing to decide either way, this deck achieves a 'third way' of worstness. It's not even optimised for any particular goal.

We're playing 5/3 and 3/1 agendas to make it as hard as possible to score. There's a strong argument for Merger but we might be able to score it if we install it before the runner is onto our plan to suck as hard as possible, so we're playing it safe. The 3/1s have a similar problem but they're only worth half as much, they significantly help the runner to score out by giving them that last point, and they make our R&D much more porous. Obviously one-ofs of of Research Grant and Megaprix Qualifier are worth style points. It goes without saying that we're running a maximum 21 agenda points in a minimum 45 card deck. I thought about Domestic Sleepers, but they come with a significant risk of agenda points, so I'll concentrate on assets to maximise porousness.

Custom Biotics: Engineered for Success is the perfect ID for this archetype, as not only is it blank in game, it lets the runner know there are no Jinteki traps to worry about in your deck. I initially thought the additional influence would be helpful for buying bad cards, but it turns out there's no shortage of those. That means we can come in at 15 influence despite the extra 7 being the ID's only advantage: an intimidating power move.

This is an iceless deck, an idea that's often experimented with in Netrunner and which I believe this deck demonstrates the full potential of. More unusually, in an early draft it was an operation-free deck too. There are plenty of worthless operations, but most don't have trash costs. Here we're looking to fill our deck with low trash-cost cards while avoiding any pesky economy or abilities. Only including a few spectacularly worthless operations makes Clone Suffrage Movement a shoo in. A banned card and yet here it is in the worst possible deck! Makes you think.

An exception to our ability aversion is draw. We actively want to draw cards so that we can find our agendas too fast to deal with and so that we can deck ourselves even if the runner decides not to run. As all of our cards are worthless, drawing them confers no advantage - we're literally just making more problems for ourselves. This makes Election Day, a perfect card for us, as it offers us unparalleled draw along with the bonus of pitching our HQ into archives. Of course, one might say that we could just play Power Shutdown, but that card was always problematic. I'm declaring it against the spirit of this very serious exercise. Also for fast draw we've got Anonymous Tip. Hatchet Job is a questionable include, as it does threaten to do something of value. However, even if it works it's unlikely to accomplish more than blunting the runner's multi-access. On the upside, it's a double and it has the gold-standard 0-trash cost. Violet Level Clearance, which has good draw and a low trash cost, is rejected because it threatens an unacceptable credit gain.

Defense Construct is arguably too useful here, but in my mind it's a classic HB bad card and it does have a perfect 0 trash cost. Speaking of trash costs, these have caused me to regretfully leave out some iconic cards like Isabel McGuire and Security Subcontract. There's an argument for Calvin B4L3Y to further buff draw, but there are a lot of cards that are strong for this deck so he doesn't make the cut either. Panic Button lets you respond to HQ runs by plowing every single one of your s on draw, which is amazing. Follow up with Election Day for maximum Chad energy.

There are lots of traps like Ghost Branch that offer 0 or 1 trash costs and could be played suboptimally to prevent them doing anything, but if someone played this deck to win they might be useful. The main reason I've left them out is that I don't want to give the runner the impression they're under any threat at all. Plan B makes the cut because I can't imagine it accomplishing a damn thing even given spectacularly clever play.

This deck's worst matchup is a runner who plans to flatline themselves. If you were worried about that you could include Personalized Portal or even switch to a different ID to get access to Pālanā Agroplex and Prāna Condenser. However, even these measures won't hep you against the frankly OP Guinea Pig + Light the Fire! combo. Console yourself that in losing at the game of losing, you're really winning, in a way. That is not to say that you are winning in the literal way, (although you are), but rather that by losing at losing you are at another level winning at losing, and that's winning at winning in a way that isn't losing at losing.

31 Aug 2023 sebastiank

Im disgusted that you didn't release this earlier in the week so it could wrack up a bunch of likes, get deck of the week, and force andrej to play it, but I guess suboptimal plays are on theme with the deck.

31 Aug 2023 internet

You can use Bifrost Array to add more counters to Project Wotan or put a counter on Megaprix (maybe? who knows). Sensor Net Activation would be even worse, although failure at true failing is somehow in line with this deck.

31 Aug 2023 Greasythumb

Wotan counters are dead because there's no Ice. By my reading, Bifrost can trigger Megaprix, which then looks to see if there's another Megaprix. There isn't, so the Megaprix does not get a counter when retriggered. In my view, that's the most beautiful interaction in this deck,

31 Aug 2023 Greasythumb

I do like the idea of Sensor Net Activation, but then I'd definitely want to find a slot for Calvin B4L3Y so that I had a legal target for it.

31 Aug 2023 Bridgeman

This deck is impressively bad, well done!

Perhaps there should be some rules to this though, like what is the worst deck that has an actual game plan? Mb we should have to include some amount of ice etc?

1 Sep 2023 Jeffrey Bosboom

One of the FAQs for Megaprix Qualifier says that Bifrost Array cannot trigger its ability.

For comparison, a (pair of) decks that tries to end the game as soon as possible: netrunner 100 games speedrun any% glitchless (Helpmate). That is a clever solution to a well-defined, interesting problem; this one is just unsatisfying.

1 Sep 2023 rotage

Maybe add Watchtower as a piece of ice, this can help the runner slowly deck you out

2 Sep 2023 grombatmole

I'd like to suggest Mutually Assured Destruction to add to this hilarious nonsense