I am not the world's best Akiko player or anything, but I wanted to offer a different take on her than that in the other reviews.

By using her, you are kinda sorta pre-installing a R&D interface with all that entails. You don't have to put 3 of them in your deck in order to make sure you can R&D multi-access. That frees you up deck space for other stuff.

Rather than doubling down on R&D pressure, like with adding multiple R&D Interfaces when you are already playing Akiko, I suggest not trying to go for the deep dives on R&D. Play a few indexings, maybe, because you probably won't hit more than 2 agendas in 5 cards anyway, and just let the corp overcommit resources to defending R&D while you focus on other things like ensuring that you can get into the scoring remote when needed. Maybe play some legworks and run against HQ.

The more they spend trying to turn off your ID, the better for you because that makes other stuff less well defended.

If your ID triggers, bid zero 66% of the time and bid one 33% of the time. That should encourage the corp to spend a fair number of turns bidding 2 and go a long way toward preventing yourself from bidding higher than them. They should have to pay if they want to turn your ID off.

Also, don't shuffle up without including 1 or 2 copies of Psych Mike in your Akiko decks.

DO play Equivocation with her. That's a great cheap way to make the R&D runs you do go a lot farther. Make them draw whatever is not an agenda every time so your 1/2 accesses are a lot more likely to hit agendas. It's worth it.

<p>I think there is a good general principle here. Many Runner cards make successful runs more impactful, but in most cases it is the Corp who ultimately dictates which server is harder to get into in the first place. Therefore it is good for a Runner deck to have the ability to pressure both R&amp;D and HQ when the opportunity arises.</p> —

A green Embolus-ish card at first sight. However they are much different in their uses. Reduced Service:

  1. Starts at full strength, enabling reactive lockdown of a server that you predict the runner would run. (E.g. Create a scoring window on the remote, protecting a naked Bio-Ethics Association after the first run in Jinteki: Replicating Perfection, protecting Ronald Five on the last click, etc.)
  2. Counters cannot be regenerated once exhausted, barring derez shenanigans with Divert Power or Test Ground in Standard
  3. Is more like a Tollbooth in server tax calculation compared to Border Control for Embolus
  4. Is more usable in asset-spammy decks (Centrals only) compared to Embolus
  5. Not payable by Bad Publicity
<p>This asset incentize the runner to go against centrals. In a glacier, this card could shine very bright.</p> —

I absolutely love the NISEI 'hommage' cards to retired runners and iconic rotated cards.

The Artist brought back Kate's exceptional ability to save a credit on your first program or hardware install, as well a once-per-turn Magnum Opus click.

The Class Act gives you Andromeda's 4-card boost as well as a once-per-turn Mr. Li deck filtering.

With The Nihilist, NISEI had a bigger challenge: merging Noise: Hacker Extraordinaire and Wyldside. While Kate and Andromeda's abilities were excellent, Noise's ability was meta-defining and bringing it back in full would have been a mistake. However, this card has a significant flaw compared to the two other hommage cards: it gives the choice of resolution to the corporation.

While it is a good virus counter gathering card for Freedom Khumalo, I see very little use of its secondary ability to trash a card. No corporation would accept trashing the top of R&D to simply block you from drawing two cards. I feel like if NISEI really wanted to bring us back to Wyldside, they could've given us a bit of pancakes for brekky.

How about a card that would read: "The first time each turn you install a virus program, place 2 virus counters on this resource.

When your turn begins, you may remove a virus counter from your installed cards and lose a click to draw two cards. If you do, gain a click unless the Corp trashes the top card of R&D."

This could make the second ability to fire a bit more without hurting the card draw too much, making this card stronger but not overpowered.

<p>I have to start playing this card if there is no real choice and the runner just always gets to draw the 2 cards.</p> —

The single biggest reason why I dislike Boomerang (among many reasons to dislike it) is that it breaks Crim design philosophy. Crims, you see, are Criminals (big shocker there). Their stated goal for why they run is money and their most prominent cards embody this. Paragon (and its more broken predecessor, Desperado) pay you for running. Inside Job and Spear Phishing show how Crims prefer to evade their problems rather than waste money confronting them. Finally, Crims are, well, criminals. They steal stuff. They are especially good at punching Corps in the nose and keeping them down.

Crims however don't confront stuff all that well. They're not really supposed to, you see. Their Fracters are either good but conditional, okay, or laughably bad and outdated (meaning they are in real danger of being locked out) and their Decoders are either great but expensive or just okay. Crims splurge on Killers but only because it's the breaker type that prevents their toys from breaking the most. All this, of course, ignores Aumakua, but even that anomaly is run-dependent and thus somewhat forgiven. Simply put, Crims, more than any other faction, do not wish to overstay their welcome.

Crims lack longevity, basically. That's reinforced by their pick of the color chart as well. They're supposed to be the faction with powerful Events and Resources but little in-faction recursion, and the wisdom of that design decision really shows in Boomerang. Boomerang's self-recursion ability propels it from good to just plain obnoxious. Crims are the Runner faction that emphasize the early game, with a playstyle defined by tempo, control, and resource denial. Crims are supposed to hit fast and hard, getting away with anything, but needing help to reach their goals honestly.

Boomerang breaks that mold entirely. Its recursion is infinite, allowing for cheap, endless, strength-ignoring breaking, fodder for endless installs, and its trash ability allows for endless profits. Boomerang on its own defines Crim endgame strategy in that the Crim endgame is simply 'infinite Boomerangs.' 'Infinite Boomerangs' is, in fact, so good and reliable an endgame strategy that other factions import it in. The faction that's supposed to have the weakest endgame is now having their endgame strategy imported by other factions...

Let's hope that easy, infinite self-recursion isn't something pursued in the future. We already have two cards like that, both of them in Crim. One of them is Boomerang and the other one is banned. Note that the banned card has much more stringent recursion conditions than Boomerang.

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<p>Well, there are things that prevent (in different levels of mastering the game) that makes boomerang less hard</p> —
<p>I mean, you can (as a runner) choose a bad ice that it's not going to be rezzed. As a corp you have not many, but there are other ways to prevent the run to end successfully. (Border control, crisum grid) Also the multi sub ice is more common nowadays so you can get only 2 subrutines out. Also you can't have more than 1 boomerang on the table.</p> —

Casual "fun deck" card.

Opponents are always trying to maximize their value, at every decision step.

Cards that give your opponents choices always entail your opponent choosing whatever is the worst option for you unless you are able to surprise punish the choice that appears to be the worst for you.

If you try to be sneaky and you spring some trap that makes the opponent wish they had chosen the other option, well then you are just playing a bad combo deck.

Speaking as the opponent here, when you play this, you are using 5 resources units (draw, 2 credits, 2 clicks) to give me 4 free clicks (draw x4). At face value, that's a 9 resource swing in the wrong direction for the runner. Why would you play that, do you want me to win the game?

Whatever tricky thing you are doing with this card, it's probably not worth putting yourself at a 9 resource disadvantage by playing it.

IMHO, just play good cards instead of this.