Gated Garden 2.0 - 4th Store Champs/2nd Dutch Invitationals

Kelfecil 1806

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2nd place in 8 people Dutch Invitationals 2016 (top 8 best players in the NL)

4th place in 20 people Christmas tournament

2nd place in 8 people GNK tournament

4th place in 15 people Store Champ (was top 3 and I was left out of it due to SoS)

Link to Runner Deck - Andromeda, SupplAndy

In all of those tournaments, I lost only 2 games due to immense bad luck with agenda flood in first 2-3 turns and one game due to Sifr. Runner was the one that cost me the bad spots in all other tournaments except the Invitationals, since I configured it to run better against the meta decks like Hasty CI.

After playing this deck for a few good months, I have decided to make some changes, which you will see when I post the next decklist, which is probably in a couple months again. I will however give you some of my notes on the changes too after explaining the deck.

My good friend Jonny from the US played a major role in the building of this deck since he is the one that judges my deckbuilding choices very harshly. I do disagree on him sometimes, but it's nice to have someone to poke you about stuff. He is also the reason why I felt comfortable playing Encrypted Portals in Nisei Division (despite it being an easy to steal agenda, which I usually don't like).

Before I get into anything, I have to say that Jonny has been successfully piloting a fast-advance Palana deck which runs Sansan and he told me to try out that playstyle in Nisei too since Nisei can make use of it with the strong early game (good ICE suite). However, after a couple of days of trying it out, I realized that this is not the kind of playstyle that I really enjoy and at the same time, I was not doing good, because Nisei's full potential is only realized when you go full control style and play the long game. It may be tiring, but that's the kind of play style that I really enjoy and also think that Nisei is meant to be played in.

Welcome to the latest version of "Gated Garden"! This is by far the most well-functioning control deck I've built thus far. Why is that? Well let me explain! :)

  • The Agenda Suite : So the agendas are pretty much a staple thing in this deck. I tried playing around with them a lot, but it seems as if the deck just runs better with these, as long as you want to play the control game that is.

  • The Assets: They are your standard x2 Jackson Howard plus the x2 Shock! that makes Archives feel safer and stop the Datasucker spam as well. I was considering Cyberdex Virus Suite, but that is too much when I already run Macrophage.

  • Upgrades: are the standard x3 Caprice Nisei, x2 Crisium Grid (one of THE most important upgrades you can have in your corp deck imho) and x2 Old Hollywood Grid in order to have extra protection when the runner Rumor Mills you or something like that. Old Hollywood Grid + Nisei MKII counter actually allows you to score in your remote even without a Caprice. Runner has to be extremely rich to run through your expensive ICE, break Old Hollywood and then re-run to steal the agenda. Nisei counter just makes it even better.

  • Operations: These are important here too. Economy was changed from asset economy to operation economy again, since it was hard to keep up with the Whizzard trashing and since a lot of people have been playing slums due to prison decks being all over the place. Hedge - Restructure - Gift are the main engine and apart from those, Friends in High Places allows for reinstalling your Caprice, your Old Hollywood and your Crisiums (or ICE if they got trashed) and the x3 essential current cards that always provide a good extra pressure on the runner. ELP is just annoying, although many play run events so it does not really matter sometimes.

  • The ICE Suite: This is the key element of Nisei Division. Cheap to rez but quite expensive to break ICE allows you to have a very stable early, mid and late game. Every piece of ICE you install can have such a huge effect on the runner's economy if they want to go somewhere more than once. Therefore, there are a lot of ICE cards in the deck. Being able to rez cheap ICE is essential since the runner usually tries to fatigue your economy by running everywhere. This is impossible against Nisei, since everything can be rezzed quite fast. There are obviously a lot of code gates to make use of Encrypted Portals (and boy oh boy, does it cost the runners a lot to break increased strength code gates). The Snowflakes are always good value and x1 Komainu forces them to bring their sentry breaker for that one, or in fear of another Sentry popping up later again. Even against Gordian Blade, the ICE is really cheap to setup and rez and still a bit expensive to break.

My notes on changes:

  • Sifr is a bad match-up. Nicolo got the win in the invitationals because he kept burning all of my ICE, or Sifring through with Yog. It was a huge problem which a mid-game Lotus Field wouldn't solve on its own since he was already some points ahead. Double Mind Game on remote was great since he could only run once, but he won the psi game and that meant game for me. I did x3 Friends in High Places to bring back ICE, but imagine if I did not even have that. So yeah, Sifr, bad match-up.

  • How you solve the problem with Sifr, is by going to x3 Lotus Field, playing a tighter agenda suite (maybe my old GFI + TFP + Clone Retirement or Encrypoted Portals one again, depends) and most probably including ICE that sticks, like Magnet and Architect. Sifr is generally a problem for most decks that rely on ICE to keep the runner out and not just combo out (that basically play interactive Netrunner). That is still yet to be found out though, since I just made a new deck and I am not sure how it fairs against Sifr yet, I'll have to do some testing.

  • Dyper Kate was never a problem since the deck is so huge and so "control-y" that I just kept them out with Caprice or Crisium or something else. Dyper Kate has to spend a lot of turns in order to prepare appropriately against a control deck with good upgrades. I have faced about 4 different Dyper Kate players and haven't lost against a single one.

  • The cards that are probably going out are: Enhanced Login Protocol (since it's not really all that great, an extra scarcity would be just fine), Old Hollywood Grid (since it is great, but not always reliable, also too expensive early-mid game), probably one Aiki to make room for the 3rd Lotus Field, which although I really don't like (terrible rez for strength value when you compare it to the rest of Nisei's ICE), it is a necessary evil in the current meta.

Any comments and feedback are of course welcome as I have actually found some of the comments here to be really useful in the past when I went to deckbuild later! :)

Reason why I keep posting these, even when they don't do as good as they used to (like straight up tournaments wins in a row) is because I know some people enjoy them, so might as well share them for other people that love this playstyle!

(FYI, I will ignore all troll comments.) Thank you for reading! ^^