So, the obvious purpose of Lucky Charm is as a counter to instant run-ending effects like Border Control and Nisei MK II. As the other review points out, it's pretty bad at this job, due to having way too many limitations (it does reduce the cost of a Border Control + Surveyor server, because the HQ run is going to be cheaper than running the server, but typically not by enough to actually get in, and it doesn't save clicks, only credits).

Still, cards in Netrunner are often usable for non-obvious purposes. In particular, there's a strategy known as "trigger stacking". Think about a card like Aeneas Informant; seems pretty innocent, right? If you try to use the card for a little bonus economy, which is its obvious purpose, it doesn't do very much. However, say you install it along with a couple of other cards with the "Whenever you access a card with a trash cost not in Archives and do not trash it" trigger (like, e.g., another couple of Aeneas Informants). Now, it suddenly makes sense to start running the Corp's PAD Campaigns and intentionally failing to trash them, in effect clicking for 3. The card normally has a bad effect because the trigger doesn't naturally happen often enough to be worth the reward, but if you're stacking up a lot of cards with the same trigger, you can set off the trigger intentionally to get a lot of bonuses at once.

"Make a successful run on HQ" is a trigger that's pretty commonly seen on cards. So that means that Lucky Charm might potentially be viable in combination with other cards with the same trigger; running HQ just to trigger Lucky Charm isn't worth it, but triggering a lot of cards at once might be. Unfortunately, it won't be as simple as just running an unprotected asset, but there are cards like Feint whose entire purpose is to trigger successful-HQ-run triggers. So you can imagine a deck that plays a few Feints, a few Lucky Charms, and many cards that care about whether you get into HQ, and maybe the Lucky Charm will be viable!

Unfortunately, the picture isn't as rosy as it seems from this. The problem is, that you don't just care about getting into HQ; you care specifically about getting into HQ when you're planning to make an important run later in the turn, and lots of successful HQ run triggers don't help that much for that purpose. Sure, Gabriel Santiago: Consummate Professional's trigger is nice, but that 2 is almost certainly more than the cost of the HQ run in the first place, and running as Gabriel is simply just going to entice the Corp to put extra ICE on HQ. So although there's a wide spread of possible triggers you could stack with Lucky Charm's, only a few of them are actually useful in practice.

The second-most viable trigger stack I've discovered with Lucky Charm is Silhouette: Stealth Operative along with Wari. The idea is that you get into HQ using Feint, allowing you to expose a piece of ICE, in turn allowing you to guess what it is and bounce it back to the Corp's hand, making the scoring server just a little smaller (ideally you would bounce a Border Control). Then you get to run on the scoring server, and avoid one ETR on the way. Especially when combined with Inside Job, this can get you into scoring servers that are much deeper than the Corp might expect, even without icebreakers (normally you can get through a 3-deep server even without any appropriate breakers). This is a fun thing to do if you really badly need to get into a scoring server to stop the Corp winning. Is it competitively viable? Well, the combo itself has an effect of the required level, but unfortunately it means that you have to put several otherwise terrible cards into your deck (Feint? Wari? Lucky Charm?). So any deck that's trying to do this is doomed to be fundamentally inconsistent and too tight on deck slots. In other words, it's jank.

That said, there is one really strong trigger stack involving Lucky Charm, which has impressed me a lot and makes me think that the card does indeed have a home: Lucky Charm together with Apocalypse. Just like Lucky Charm, Apocalypse has a requirement for a successful run on HQ (which Criminals can often accomplish conveniently using Feint). It also has a requirement for a successful run on R&D; that isn't a scoring server, but it's another server that tends to be well-protected. If you simply make the HQ run first, then having a Lucky Charm installed will make it a whole lot easier to get into R&D. (This is especially the case because you don't care about, e.g. " Trash 1 program." subroutines on an Apocalypse run, because you're about to blow everything up anyway, so Lucky Charm is enough by itself to get past otherwise very taxing ICE such as Archer.) Even better, Apocalypse is definitely a competitively viable card, and Feint is definitely viable in an Apocalypse deck because it saves so much money when doing the Apoc runs. (You can combine this with the Wari combo if you're a jank fan. It might not even be bad! But in practice, I've found that typically the Wari setup is unnecessary for a Lucky Charm Apoc deck; typically you have enough bypass to get into R&D even without it.)

Conclusions: Lucky Charm is a bad card… unless you happen to have a deck that needs to be able to run difficult servers and needs to do so on the same turn as an HQ run for some reason. In other words, this is a card for your Criminal tri-run decks (generally Apocalypse, although I guess if you prefer Exploit or Quest Completed or Notoriety or whatever, go mad). It isn't a (viable) hate card; if you're trying to get around the Corp's run-ending effects, you'll sadly have to look elsewhere, so run it only if it's a perfect fit for what your deck is trying to do.

Snare! is the bane of beginning runner who are playing against a Jinteki deck. This trap has the fastest win record of all card. Every runner has lived the experience of using/installing 3 cards and running a naked server to die on Snare on the first turn of the game.

At 2 influences, it can be used to give a nasty surprise in any deck.

Snare combine especially well with Preemptive Action and Genotyping, allowing the corp to put back Snare in the diminishing R&D. Giving cold sweat to the runner.

Other card that combine especially well with Snare are Mwanza City Grid and Hokusai Grid. Mwanza will force the runner to dig further in the deck, giving a better chance to hit Snare TWICE. Hokusai will give a net damage before digging the deck, enhancing the flatline potential.

And then, there is the tag that comes with it. If the runner make the mistake of running on last click, this tag will let the corp trash their ressources, or worse.

The main drawback is the cost. At 4 creds, it is kind of expensive. If the corp does not prepare its econ accordingly, it run the possibility of a runner triggering a Snare that cannot be paid, this becoming a dud, easily trashed.

The art is evocative. Here is a suggestion for the quote : "Snap!"


Brainteki has it right. But since it has been 5 years, let's revisit this a bit.

Project Junebug is the trap to which all other trap are compared. At one influence, it can be used in any deck where you need a good trap.

A big advantage of Project Junebug is that, when you'll use it, which is usually Install-Advance-Advance, it look just like a NGO Front or a future 3 points agenda. The runner has to choose to take the risk of : 1-making a run for nothing, 2-making a run and losing 4 cards, possibly getting flatline, 3-no making the run and letting the corp score a 3 points agenda, 4-making the run an scoring the agenda (but not in this case). When the corp is on game point, it is a really tough choice.

On top of this, this trap (like Cerebral Overwriter and Aggressive Secretary) can be used with Mushin No Shin to great effect. Using a Mushin No Shin on this give the runner an even tougher choice. 6 cards is a lot. 3 points is a lot.

But what if the runner does not run and then you have an advanced trap sitting on the board for nothing? Enter the other one influence card : Back Channel. This will let you "score" Project Junebug tokens for 3 credits per token. Advance Project Junebug to 5 or 6 tokens and the runner will start to think it might be a False Flag (3 agenda points for 7 advances, 1 tag per 2 advance). If the runner run it, this can deal 10 or 12 net damage, insuring a flatline. Otherwise, this could net you 12 creds in 2 turns, or even more if you used Mushin No Shin. Pretty neat.

Using Back Channel, Project Junebug can also be combined with La Costa Grid, to let it self advance to get those sweet 3 credits without even paying for advance or using clicks (don't push it too far, the runner will find other ways).

Finally, you can combine Project Junebug with Upgrade traps, like Hokusai Grid and Prisec, to get an even greater effect.

Of course, there are cards to protect the runner : No One Home. On The Lam, The Noble Path, Recon Drone, Ramujan, Heartbeat, Deus X, Caldera, Guru Davinder, Sacrificial Clone, Bio-Modeled Network. The problem of those card is always the same, it target corp that does damage. So they can also be dead cards.

Comparable to Project Junebug (in faction) are Snare!, Psychic Field, Shi.Kyu and Gene Splicer. Snare trigger from R&D. Shi.Kyu trigger also from Archive (but not R&D), Psychic Field will take ALL the card of the runner, but not flatline. And Gene Splicer does half the damage but will grant an agenda point (often the 7th agenda point).

If you want to play the shell and bluff game, Project Junebug is damn good. Shell game is its own kind of thing in Netrunner. A special kind of fun, where you dare the runner to make runs.


The previous review are correct. But I will add other thought about this card.

First, it is a 2/3 agenda. Just this make it an excellent for any deck, especially rush deck. Here Medical Breakthrough is good. So is Project Yagi-Uda.

Second, it combine goes well with corp who plan with mostly one pointers and two pointers agendas. Creating the condition to damage significantly the runner.

Third, it combine even better with negative agenda points : Shi.Kyu, Hangeki, News Team, Meridian. If the corp incorporate those, it is possible to have 12 negative agenda in the corp deck (using 15 influences). The more negative and positive agendas the runner has, the more it is likely to flatline the runner by scoring Philotic Entanglement.

Fourth, it combine also with damaging agendas : Obotaka Protocol, Fetal AI, Sting!, House of Knives. All those will allow you to grind the cards of the runner quite a bit. Especially if you use Jinteki Personal Evolution.

It is such a fantastic agenda for Jinteki. If you are a reader of Ender's game (or have watched the movie), Philotic might tell you something. "Prepare the Ansible".


Fetal AI is part of the agenda suite, with Sting! and Obotaka Protocol, which allow Jinteki to flatline the runner. It self protect itself in 3 ways.

First, it cost 2 creds, if you do not have that, yo cannot steal it.

Second, it will give 2 net damage (+1 if stolen, if you are Jinteki Personal Evolution), setting the runner up for other damage (like from Ronin). It is unlikely to flatline the runner, but in case of multiaccess, if one of the other card is Snare!, it is possible to outright flatline the runner. This isi why Mwanza City Grid synergize well with this agenda.

Third, it is only 2 agenda points. It might cost the corp 5 advancements, it will always be a hefty price to pay for the runner.

In a trap and ambush heavy deck, it fit right in. It is also very good for grinding the runner out of card. Jinteki many ways to kill runner.

Aside from Mwanza City Grid, it synergize well with cards like Hokusai Grid, Prisec and Ben Musashi. Along this, the corp will look to use Sting!, Obotaka Protocol and House of Knives in its agenda suite.

To top it all, the art is spooky! What could be a quote to fit with it?

<p>A quote to fit with it? It has to be short to fit on a card with so much text, so how about 'Ouch!'?</p> —
<p>@Krams : I like cards to have a quote, it gives flavor to an otherwise mechanical text. Your suggestion really encapsulate what this does. The spooky version would be "I see you". The art of this card is among the most disturbing in Netrunner, it should have a fitting flavor.</p> —
<p>"Fetal AI cry is one of the worst sounds that anyone can think of."</p> —