The Spoiler that made Weyland fans around the world say: "OMG Weyland's getting good ICE!"

One of the primary concerns Weyland has revolves around its suite of ICE; the earlier cycles giving us the likes of Tyrant, Salvage, Woodcutter, and Burke Bugs, which hasn't exactly lit the world of fire. This faction has a good reputation with most of it's barriers, but other ICE types seem to fall apart. When asked to name a good Weyland Sentry piece of ICE, 99% of you will proclaim Archer, and for Code Gates most would say Checkpoint or Wormhole...and herein lies the problem, why is most of Weyland's ICE so mediocre?

Enter Mausolus, a stand-alone, strong Code Gate with multiple subs that are respectable, until you discover this pieces of ICE is the first of its kind - one that has stronger, more impactful subs when it is advanced. Staring down the barrel of this ICE fully advanced gives Faust a run for its cards, requiring 2 to boost and a further 3 to break, you can be sure the Runner will let the first sub fire. The problem comes with surprise, a thrice-advanced piece of ICE will telegraph itself as a Mausolus, which doesn't allow it to get the drop on you like an Archer would. Sure, there's Anson Rose to consider for means of boost-advancing on encounter, but then you're surrendering yourself to build a deck that capitolises on that support network, with ICE like Fire Wall that gets slow-rolled into a towering beast of an inferno, until the runner drops a D4v1d.

Mausolus is a good card, and I think any and all Weyland decks will treat this as an auto-include. Maybe someone could bluff out a triple-advanced Ice Wall to instill the fear of the steroid-ed Mausolus, but the fact remains despite the little impact of surprise - Mausolus isn't ICE to encounter lightly, and each run is going to tighten the belt of the Runner's pay-to-break pool. I sincerely hope Weyland get to see ICE like this in future packs, because Meat Damage Protection is still being printed and Weyland needs more ways to secure their beefy agendas, (at time of writing - still the only faction with a single 3/2 agenda.)

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Might be fun out of Tennin too... —
A good ID for it, in a faction native to net damage, but at 3 influence I think the asking price is too high. —
Interesting designer choice, that Code Gates get more scary, see DNA Tracker. —
Thrice-advanced ICE could also be space ICE so you can potentially bluff one of those instead —
@LordRandomness. - While mechanically possibly I don't see a lot of space ice at all these days. Wormhole sometimes makes an appearance while Orion is sometimes used as an Oversight AI target; but the times I do see wormhole no one advances it beforehand. Sometimes the surprise is just too impactful to throw away. —

Coming from a huge fan of Jinteki I find no joy in admitting that after an objectionable reflection of Potential Unleashed, I'm still on the fence as to whether this ID is worth playing over Pālanā Foods: Sustainable Growth; let's break it down and study it a little.

So this ID sacrifices utility and versatility to maximise milling threat. The ability triggers on each instance of Net damage, forcing the Runner to discard the top card of their Stack. When Runners took a gamble at running a protected Jinteki server they would weigh up their grip and contemplate how damaging it would be if they lost this particular hand of cards; now, net damage preys on the unknown and makes the Runner think if they're going to lose their only Decoder / Plascrete / etc. from their stack. This is quite a huge threat for anyone not running recursion, especially Criminal. Ark Lockdown servers as an opportunity to destroy Levy AR Lab Access before it can be played, potentially locking the Runner out of specific servers for the rest of the game.

Having this kind of threat comes with the cost of highly porous in-faction ICE with a clipped influence to boot; forcing your playstyles to be 'lockout' or 'flatline'. It's somewhat refreshing to have Jinteki return to its murderous roots, more-so with Rumor Mill shutting down nearly all of Jinteki's reliable means to score; but good Runners will balance their runs and known when and how to take calculated risks. With much of the ICE needed to compliment Potential Unleashed in faction and expected in these deck, winning is likely to be a test of attrition; PU wants to find your breakers and your Levy through its tried and tested 1000 cuts. With Aiki and DNA Tracker added to the roster, net damage is looking more attractive, but cost affects play more than often and Jinteki are by no means thriving with Econ.

Balancing the right ICE, with the right number of punishing assets and operations to give validity to your PU deck does cut short a number of your win options, and you may have to rely on the shell game to attempt to score when desperate. It's very much an Identity that relies on luck, but having your opponent sweat in fear of making a terrible mistake can make it all worth while. Ironically I don't think it has unleashed its full potential just yet, and I look forward to seeing what experiments give this Blade Tree some sharper, more competitive teeth.

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Initial inspection of Hatchet Job conjures thoughts of pushing back an expensive Runner card, such a Security Nexus or Femme Fatale back to hand, or an overloaded Medium, to knock back the Runner's tempo. The reality is the card is riddled with a number of flaws that hurts its viability and justification for a deck slot. A 2 Double Operation that depletes most of your turn to force a trace on the Runner, at a base of 5; with the most expensive install card likely to be Paperclip in today's meta. This is all while requiring the Trace being successful, and the Runner not trashing the card for free on access. Strong arguments could be made to follow this up with a Salem's Hospitality as a form of rig destruction, but that involves holding onto Hatchet Job until then and hoping it doesn't get trashed for nothing.

The card still feels too niche and too fragile for me to justify its inclusion, NBN have a plethora of better cards that could be included to do just as much damage as this card could. That 0 just hurts this so much.

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Just hatchet job your own agendas in the runners grip. Best way to make sure they never access them. —
That's super funny @Frogblast. It should work based on the text. —
Unfortunately they then just overdraw, discard them into your archives, and run. —
Unless you do that after they have no more stack left to draw and use a deck which deals no damage to them that would help them getting rid of the agenda. If only LARLA wasn't in every deck :D —
Well with skorpios and salem's hospitality this is a really good in a rig shooter combo —

The Weyland Chum as it were, a neat Code Gate with beautiful artwork that will simply struggle to find a space in competitive decks. The biggest issue with this piece of ICE is not the positioning requirements, but the lack of impact the ability has. Strength 5 Code Gates are automatically attractive, but one that can allow itself to fire with no immediate consequence to the Runner may not be pulling enough weight to justify its existence. It doesn't help being native to Weyland, a faction that primarily consists of pumpable barriers.

Factor the install cost of the ICE vs the Rez Cost, vs holding onto it to wait for that Archer you're desperate to install in front of, and your focus has turned from making this a potentially taxing card to devoting set-up just to make this work. It's not worth it. The value in Chum at least stems from the threat of a kill in a faction that runs low-strength, multi-sub, dangerous ICE. Jannkmasters will always have a nice combo in mind with Red Tape, but tournament decks aren't going to see enough value to replace gear-check ICE with a card that isn't impactful enough, and will inevitably be cheaper for the Runner to break the next ICE at +3 strength than break Red Tape.

1570
I feel like you got to mention Wendigo. It is the same rez cost, also a strong code breaker (1 less str), but instead of costing 3 more, it makes them unable to break the followup ice at all. Much better card, same role, same faction. Can even swap types. Red Tape isn't going to be used until you have 3 Wendigos, and even then you might look at Builder first. —

Versatility is the golden egg among the gaggle of IDs, and credits are at the forefront. Money talks, and the economy race is paramount in Netrunner, so we have an ID that supports the corp by setting back their opponent. At the start of the Flashpoint cycle we're starting to see a shift towards NBN trace-centric punishment in forms of Hard-Hitting News and Hatchet Job; threats towards Economy, Resources, Programs, Agendas and Life are all viable if you cannot out-money the corp and a tag is landed. I've found this identity to be one of the most interesting and versatile identities in NBN's pool, outside of the ever classic NEH.

Aside from the aforementioned constant credit drop to set back the Runner's Sure Gambles, look at how the identity can leverage a credit swing on your behalf. Product Placement is one of my favourite NBN cards, and can act as a fantastic bluff upgrade to a potential naked Astro, so long as the Runner is willing to further push money into your pockets for the risk. In a bid to ensure a Midseason Replacements landed I installed an Explode-a-palooza behind a Special Offer with a Product Placement, which was rezed on my turn. The Runner runs it, steals the agendas, and hits all ICE and Upgrades on the way - ending with a -1 and -2 on their part to take 2 points and give me +11. The Midseasons lands comfortably and now it's race between Psychographics / Project Beale or Scorched Earth / BOOM!.

Consulting Visit plays a great role to get the necessary operations into play when the time is right. Fairchild 1.0 applies a nice tax on face-checking Runners, with the constant threat of the necessity to spend credits that are being depleted. Poor Runners will also have a hard time getting through Tollbooth and Little Engine if they cannot climb the hill to begin with. Slow score behind high-strength ICE while draining the Runner's credit pool, Leverage the economic race to your advantage to go full on tag storm, leading up to a flatline or a 1-Beale victory, this ID gives you those options.

1570
Spark only triggers on the first ad you rez each turn...so if you rez Offer AND Product Placement in the same turn, they should only lose 1 cred. —
Correct, but I said that the Product Placement was Rezed on my turn, and naturally the Offer would be Rezed on theirs. Probably my awkward way of wording it. —