So I went to Worlds. I recently picked up the game and fell in love with it. Unsurprisingly, I was more than a little nervous about attending the most competitive event for my first tournament experience. What I experienced that weekend in Toronto just blew my mind. I came as a lone nooby but left with a dozen new friends and a wealth of experience. A heartful thanks to the wonderful Netrunner community and a special shoutout to the local Toronto crew, who were wonderful people. Thanks to my two German fellows @5NOOP1 and @tradon for our pleasant time together and their coaching.
Another unforgettable anecdote: I played the same deck during the Crown of Servers tournament. When we sat down after a first-round bye, I found myself matched against soon-to-be world champion @Sokka in my first-ever competitive Netrunner match. After losing my runner in the second match hard, I managed a timed draw with this deck when Sokka could not quite afford the NAPD Cordoned Bellona in the remote.
The deck did exceptionally well during the standard event at Worlds, and I found myself at a surprising 15 points after three games. I tasted a bit of air at the top tables and then bounced back to the mid tables. To be fair, I believe most people were not prepared to face this deck and did not know how to play around it.
All the credit and inspiration for the deck go to the fabulous @amavric. You should definitely check out his deck feature on the Métropole Grid stream. He does a way better job at explaining the deck mechanics than I ever could.
Early game: Since I am an aggressive player at heart, I try to jam an agenda on turn 2 behind one piece of ICE and score it out with Prav token and/or Seamless Launch. Best case is scoring Offworld Office quickly, and then hitting them with a well-timed Artificial Cryptocrash, putting us on 4 points.
Mid game: 2-3 taxing ICE on the remote. Install Bellona, advance, NAPD Cordon. It is a satisfying line which I was able to say out loud many times during the weekend (Install-Advance-NAPD Cordon!). With the Cordon and additional advancement tokens from Prav and Vasilisa, the Bellona costs 13 to 15 credits to steal.
Late game: I never got to the late game, so who knows?
Fast advancing with Vladisibirsk City Grid is another option, but I rarely used it. Mostly the card was used as a four credits tax for the runner in our game of economic warfare.
I made a couple changes to the deck to streamline it:
Mitosis - awesome card, but my thinking was either to go all in or nothing. With only one copy, oftentimes I found myself missing the combo pieces. Mitosis - Bellona - NGO Front - NAPD Cordon is cute first turn play, though. :)
NGO Front - I like it quite a lot better than Ubiquitous Vig or Regolith Mining License in Prav. Usually just left on the board and advanced with Prav counters until you need the money. A bit anti-synergistic on run, though, since there is no action window to pop it after you put the advancement counter from Prav on it after successful run.
Predictive Planogram - in most cases just a Diesel to find your missing pieces (usually Agendas to jam in the early and mid game). Also clutch for breaking Stargate locks. Mild tag punishment for Vasilisa, Turnpike and Tomorrow's Headline.
Endless EULA - just so good and taxing.
Urtica Cipher - if they see it early in R&D or HQ, they will be scared to run (good for us). There is a cool bluff in Install Urtica, Advance, NAPD Cordon, which screams agenda and can do 4-5 net damage. I only got one flatline in the tournament with it. A Freedom Khumalo: Crypto-Anarchist player was running on few hand cards, Stargate out. So I just installed this naked pretending to be a Spin Doctor, which he ran first click with only two cards in hand.
Our arch enemy is Imp, which just transfers our expensive Bellona to the bin, nullifying our game plan. The inclusion of one or two Mavirus could solve the problem, dropping one Akhet and one Vladisibirsk City Grid.
Many thanks again to the wonderful Netrunner community for their warm welcome. See you again soon!